Instagram unfiltered: 16 great features you might not know about

Never miss an important photo

The trouble with following so many Instagram accounts is that you can’t prioritise what shows up on your feed. So if there is one account that’s more important to you than the others, the only way to make sure you never miss a post is to go directly to the person’s account regularly.

But there’s a much easier way to go about this - have Instagram do the work for you instead.

Make it happen: Go to that very important account in your Instagram life, tap on the (...) icon in the top right, and then Turn on Post Notifications. This will allow Instagram to push notifications to you, so that whenever that user posts anything, you’ll be notified instantly.

When you’re tired of the constant updates, simply follow the same steps to Turn off Post Notifications.

Emoji hashtags

The problem with hashtags on Instagram is that they can be very specific, ranging from #yaaayyy to #alwaysnforever, depending on the hashtagger’s level of literacy. As such, words and their accompanying hashtags are subjective to the individual, depending on culture, age, and a number of other variables. But you know what transcends language and cultural boundaries? Emojis.

Make it happen: If you struggle finding what you want from conventional hashtags, you might be more successful searching emoji hashtags. Instead of trying to narrow the search be deciding whether to look for #Paris or #vivelafrance, simply search #(insert French flag emoji).

Considering the new emojis available with the iOS update, there’s a world tagged with hashes awaiting you.

Fade and Colour

While the three new filters are undoubtedly the star of Instagram’s latest update, their appearance has overshadowed the addition of two brand new tools. If you’re not a fan of simply slapping a filter on, using Tools is a great way of creating your custom blend of photo edits.

Make it happen: When you’re tweaking a photo post, experiment with these two new additions by tapping on Tools and scrolling to the middle section. In Colour, you can tweak shadows and highlights, while Fade gives a subtly nostalgic effect.

Save your data

Unlimited data is a luxury, and many people have to scrimp and save just to make it through the month on a meager 2GB.

But there are so many Instagram accounts to poke around in, so many puppies to coo at, and so many food photos to make us salivate. Before you know it, you’ve blitzed through too much data, and your phone bill does not look too happy. Happily, there is a way to curb your Instagram’s datappetite.

Make it happen: Go to Settings, hit Cellular Data Use and make sure Use Less Data is switched on. You won’t miss out on the visual fun, but your experience might be a little affected in the sense that the images will take a while to load. But that’s better than having no data at all by the middle of the month.

What Instagram really needs to do though, is bring back the option to stop videos from autoplaying. We don’t need to watch every video, you know.

Destroy search evidence

“I absolutely do not have search history that I’m ashamed of,” said no one ever. If you’ve ever searched for random animals like 'echidna' just to see what one looks like, here’s how to make sure no one ever catches wind of your Animal Planet ignorance. 

Make it happen: Head into Settings. Near the bottom, you’ll find Clear Search History. Tap on that, and then hit Yes. Boom - your mortifying search history has officially been wiped off the face of Instagram.

Switching up Instagram accounts

It’s about time Instagram faced up to the fact that many of us have multiple accounts, whether it’s for work or for every single one of our five dogs. Thank the square-photo gods that we no longer have to go through the process of signing in and out every time we want to post an update of their incremental growth.

Make it happen: Go to your profile then Settings, marked by that little gear icon. Scroll all the way to the bottom to add additional accounts by entering your username and password.

Once that’s done, all you have to do is tap your username at the top of your profile to move between accounts. You will always know which account you’re active in via the profile photo. Just make sure you don’t post personal photos to your work account. You’ve been warned.

This feature is available in version 7.15 for iOS and Android so make sure you’ve got the most up to date version.