How to Use Instagram Filters & Why You Should (2022 Guide)

Last Updated: August 6, 2022
Let’s discuss how to use Instagram filters and also why we think you should be using them right now.
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Do you know how to use Instagram filters?

If you are someone who knows a whole lot about scrolling through your Instagram feed, but almost nothing about editing your Instagram images, then Instagram filters could be just what you need to go up a level when it comes to your Instagram content.

Right now, we think that your Instagram aesthetic is more important than ever, and even though you might think you are living the best version of your life on Instagram, if you aren’t making sure that your feed has a consistent, cohesive look, then everything you are doing for your Insta right now might be for nothing.

We all know what some of the best Instagram accounts look like out there, because each of us follow at least two or three of them.

Their Instagram feeds look super put-together and there’s a good chance that you have scrolled through them while feeling jealous.

You love what’s going on with their Instagram feed, but you don’t think that you’ve got the skills, time, or money to make the most of some of the most expensive editing tools out there.

What Are Instagram Filters?

So, what exactly are Instagram filters? Well, they are a quick, easy way to give your photos a little boost, before you post them to your feed.

Whether you are editing your pics through Instagram, or you are using another editing app, you can choose a filter to put over your photo and achieve the look that you are going for.

Each filter provides a multitude of effects, and the best part is that like the rest of social media out there, there are no actual rules for you to follow.

Of course, there are some aesthetics that people like over others, but at the end of the day, the whole point of Instagram is to be able to express yourself and create a feed that you think your audience is going to love.

Let’s discuss a little further why we think you should know how to use Instagram filters right now.

It’s Going to Save You Money, and Time

Yes, we all are a fan of Instagram, but at the end of the day, the majority of us don’t have all day to sit around and spend editing our photos so they are picture perfect.

Even if we did, you would quickly discover that editing tools can be hard to use, and a lot of the time really expensive.

When using an Instagram filter, you are just a couple of taps on your phone away from cultivating a perfect post.

It Creates a Cohesive Look

We have all been there when we have visited someone’s Instagram feed, and we’ve gotten really confused about what’s going on. This isn’t because their industry or niche isn’t up your alley; it is most likely because they’re all over the place with their posts.

They aren’t too sure what they’re trying to achieve with their Instagram feed, and as a result they’re trying out something different with each image or video that they put up. It’s important to remember that Instagram is so much more than just your latest post.

You need to incorporate the big picture as well and think of your images and videos as a collection. When you use similar filters on all of your Instagram content, you create a consistent theme, which is aesthetically pleasing to your audience.

You Can Build a Brand with a Filter

Brand With Image Filters

If you had been on Instagram for a while, then you have probably heard the term ‘personal brand’ a few hundred times.

At this point, it is definitely overused, but it also reigns true because there are so many brands both big and small on Instagram trying to make a name for themselves.

What it really means is that you have managed to create an aesthetic with your Instagram feed, which is instantly recognizable, and something that your audience can associate with your brand.

When you play around with Instagram filters, you can work out which ones are going to represent your vibe the best, and you can develop a cohesive theme that is built on your brand which people are going to easily remember. Take the Instagram feeds below as good examples of this.

How to Use Instagram Filters

So, hopefully at this point we have convinced you to use Instagram filters on your content, or at least try them out. If this is the case, then let’s talk about how to use Instagram filters to your advantage, and how to choose ones that are going to really make your content stand out.

Instagram Filter for Posts

Instagram Filter for Posts

Did you know that in the Instagram app alone, you’ve got more than 40 filters to choose from? This is a lot of options, and it can be a little bit overwhelming if you don’t even know where to start. This is why we suggest that you take some time to go through the different filters and play around with them a little bit.

See what looks good on your feed and what doesn’t so that you can figure out what is going to resonate best with your audience. When you go to the app, select the ‘+’ sign that you will see at the bottom of your screen. Once you have chosen a video or photo from your library on your smartphone, choose ‘next’ that will be at the top of your screen to the right.

Underneath your photo, you will notice a group of filters. Scroll to the right for additional options. To apply a particular filter, simply select the filter. If you want to adjust the strength of the filter, click on it a second time.

However, with this in mind, we suggest that you apply the ‘less is more’ approach. People aren’t really into oversaturated images these days, so the more natural you can make your content appear, the better. You can also save yourself time by deciding what order your filters appear in.

If you want to move a filter to the front of the line, just tap and hold down on it. You can also edit your filter list to only include those that you like to use on a regular basis. So, if you want to hide a filter, hold it down, and drag it to where you see an ‘X’.

 x option

At the end of the day, the Instagram filters that you choose to use are completely up to you. However, we will go through a couple of the most popular Instagram filters being used right now, so that you can decide whether you want to jump on board the trending train or not.

  • Clarendon: this is a great option if you want to pop out that color and highlight and intensify the subject of your posts.
  • Gingham: If you want to go for a vintage vibe, then Gingham is where it’s at.
  • Juno: making landscapes real and rich with a filter like this is going to help you stand out. It will also help you brighten those warm hues.
filters

Using Filters for Instagram Stories

The great news is Instagram filters aren’t just limited to your Instagram feed. You can also use Instagram filters in your Instagram stories. So, once you have taken a video or photo for your Instagram stories, swipe right to check out your filter choices. There will be 11 to choose from.

insta stories

If you are looking for something a little bit more playful, then we suggest that you check out the face filter options, which you can find by clicking on the smiley face that you will see at the bottom of your screen.

smiley face

When you choose the face filter, there will be instructions that come up like ‘tilt your head back’, or ‘open your mouth’. With these kinds of filters, you can show your funny side, and include everything from dramatic makeup to sunglasses and rabbit ears for your Instagram stories.

If you are someone who still uses Snapchat, you can even include a video or a photo that you have taken on Snapchat on your Instagram stories. All you’ve got to do is select the ‘download’ button on Snapchat, and then upload it from your phone’s library when you go onto your Instagram profile.

Use Instagram Filters for Photoshop

If your life has been changed by Instagram filters at this point, then being able to preset filters is going to blow your mind. You can think of presets kind of like high-quality filters.

There are a lot of professional photographers out there that use editing programs like Photoshop to adjust everything from saturation to brightness, sharpening, and even removing red eyes from images. However, as we mentioned above, for the average Joe, editing software is difficult to use and expensive.

This is where presets come in. Professional photographers and popular influencers make their presets in Photoshop. They even sell these presets on their websites, and a lot of people like this have links to their presets on their Instagram bios.

A lot of the time, presets are sold in bulk packages. This means that you can get a variety of vibrancies and tones that can complement any image. When it comes to how much they cost, you can expect to pay anything from just a couple of dollars, to $100.

At the end of the day, people who have created presets are banking on the fact that they’re going to really help someone do well, so setting the price is basically completely up to them.

How to Use Presets

If you want to use presets on your smartphone, you can download the Adobe Lightroom CC app. This app is available both for Android and iPhone, and it will need you to make an account – but don’t worry, you won’t have to pay anything.

Once you have downloaded the app, you can import your presets to your smartphone. We suggest that you create an album, so that you can keep everything organized and in the same place.

Presets

If you want to apply a preset to an image, you’ve got to add it to the app. You can do this by selecting the ‘add photo icon’ that you will find at the bottom of the screen to the right. Once you have chosen the photo you want to edit, you can select the right preset for it.

Open your preset, then select the three dots that you will find at the top of your screen to the right and choose ‘copy settings’.

Copy Settings

Go back to the image that you are editing. Select the three dots and choose ‘paste settings.’

Paste Settings

If you like what the preset has done to the image, then choose the three dots again and select ‘save to device’. If you don’t like it, then you can choose the undo option to try another preset.

Save to Device

If you like how a preset looks for the most part, but you want to do a little bit of adjusting, then you can use the editing options that you will find at the bottom of the screen. While you are experimenting with different presets on your image, we suggest that you save all of your favorites to your phone.

This way, you can compare them side-by-side, and work out which one you like the most. Just remember to select the ‘undo’ arrow after you have saved an image, so that you can continue to use the original picture and continue to be applying presets.

Final Thoughts

Now that your Instagram feed is looking amazing because of Instagram filters, why not keep leveling up on social media in general?

The top hashtag generator provides a whole host of features for its clients that go beyond just helping you with the aesthetics of your Instagram feed.

At the end of the day, we want to see you do really well with your Instagram growth, and we know that if you’ve got the right tools on your side, you can reach for the stars.

Knowing how to use Instagram filters is an important tool that can boost your growth.

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Written by Eddie Thunder

I’m a full-time social media research specialist. Actually you could say I’m a bit obsessed. I seek out the latest information and hacks for our How-to Guides. As well as that, I put companies under the microscope for reviews. Yes I’m hyper-critical when reviewing services, and most can’t handle the harsh truth – can you?
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