You’ve been doing it for years: taking up precious space in your Instagram bio to put “they/them” or “she/they” or whatever combo suits you best. There were so many decisions to make: do you put your pronouns at the end of your bio, or right under your name? Do you even have enough space to include them? But starting on May 11, you can now put your pronouns in your Instagram profile without actually having to put them in your bio description.
How Do You Add Pronouns To Your Instagram Profile?
This new IG update creates its own section for displaying your pronouns, and allows you to choose a wide variety of options — from she/her/hers and they/them/theirs to ze/zir/zir and xe/xem/xyr. “Add up to 4 pronouns to your profile so people know how to refer to you,” the app will prompt you. “You can edit or remove them any time.” Per a press release emailed to Bustle, the platform recognizes 11 different pronouns sets. If you use pronouns that aren’t yet options in the app, you can submit a pronoun request form here.
You can access this option by pressing “Edit profile” on your main profile page — tap the circle icon in the lower left-hand corner of your screen to get there. You’ll find the new Instagram pronoun section between your name and username. Click where it says “Pronouns” and start editing, just like you would edit your name or website info. When you’re done, you can toggle an option to only display your pronouns to your followers, rather than to everyone.
According to Instagram’s Twitter feed, people in “some countries” can access this new feature as of May 11. If it’s not available on your app yet, try updating it or restarting your phone.
Why Should You Add Pronouns To Your Instagram Profile?
Many trans, nonbinary, and queer folks think it’s important for everyone, regardless of their gender, to put their pronouns in email signatures or social media bios. “I’m a woman,” says Lúcia, 25. “But according to society, I don’t ‘look like a woman.’” Putting her pronouns on social media is “scary and vulnerable,” but also necessary so that people refer to her correctly.
With Instagram offering a dedicated space for everyone to put their pronouns in their profile, Lúcia says it’s a gesture toward normalizing who she is. “My dad has an IG account, and now whenever he wants to update his profile, he’ll see a pronoun section,” she tells Bustle. “Seemingly little things like this aren’t actually little,” she adds. “They can feel hugely validating, for me at least.”