Are you ready to take your Instagram account to the next level? The popular photo-sharing service just announced an amazing new feature called Instagram Stories, which allows you to share all of your moments for a 24-hour window that won't interrupt the rest of your feed. While this is a cool option in itself, there are so many more fun and easy Instagram Stories hacks that will make the service work amazingly for you.
Instagram Stories is great, since it won't clog up your feed with photos you only sort of care about. For example, if you've been in a situation where you've felt the need to pick just one solid photo to summarize your entire summer trip, as to not be annoying to your followers and friends, you'll love the ability to share to your heart's content without ruffling any virtual feathers. The way you receive feedback will also change for Instagram Stories — instead of likes or comments, you can chat with the people following your stories using Instagram Direct. Oh, and it must be mentioned that you can get really creative with your story by adding doodles or text to the photos you're interested in sharing. So, once you get the update, know that you can definitely play around with your photos and give them a bit more life before including them in your daily wrap-up.
Here are a few important hacks you'll want to know about once you start using Instagram Stories.
1. You can pause a story by pressing down on the screen.
If you're watching someone's story and the doorbell rings, have no fear — you can pause it by pressing down, and revisit it sometime within those 24-hours when you've got a few extra minutes to spare.
2. Check to see how well your story is doing by swiping up.
When you swipe up, you can see how many people have interacted with your Instagram Story. And even better, this information is just available to you. So, it's not a popularity contest as much as it is a way for people to share parts of their lives. Instead of likes or comments, you'll get feedback from Instagram Direct.
3. Swipe left and right to check out other stories.
When watching stories, swipe left or right to skip to the story before and after the story you're currently looking at.
4. If you love your story, it doesn't have to be gone after a day.
While your story won't automatically be featured directly on your feed, it could be if you let it. While stories have their own section on the app, you can choose to share a story on your feed as well. (I have a feeling a lot of people might be doing this until they get used to the change a bit.) Post from your story straight to your Instagram by checking out those who have viewed it, and clicking on the icon in the middle.
5. Pull the screen down to post pics and videos from your camera roll.
You can only choose photos that you've taken in the last 24 hours, but if there's a moment from earlier in the day you want to add, feel free to do so.
6. Use the settings to take full control over your story.
You'll be able to pick and choose who gets to see it, and whether or not you want people to comment on it. Commenting is available by tapping, and from there, users will be able to shoot you a direct message through the app — but by turning it off, you can kinda-sorta get some peace of mind if you're only interested in showcasing what you've been up to.
7. Get more creative by unleashing a wide variety of pen colors.
When you want to draw on a photo (and, of course you do), you'll see a small selection of possible colors you can use. Just press and hold these colors, and a lot of other options will be available to you. Also, your line width can change by simply tapping on the bottom left icon. It's like magic.
Images: Pixabay; Giphy (3); Hannah Caldwell/Bustle