How To Use Backdrops On Snapchat

by Laken Howard
Courtesy of Snapchat

If you were getting tired of using the same old dog-eared filter on all your Snaps, you'll be thrilled with Snapchat's new feature called backdrops — a fun, artsy new way to jazz up your Snaps. But how do you use backdrops on Snapchat, and how exactly are they different than regular filters?

Essentially, backdrops are "colorful and artful patterns" that Snapchatters can place behind any object in their photo Snaps (unfortunately, it doesn't work on video Snaps yet). Located in the Vertical Toolkit under the scissors icon, backdrops lets you choose a pattern to place behind your picture, and then you can outline whichever parts of the photo you want to be in front of the pattern, so that the star of the Snap isn't lost in the chaos.

Backdrops are like a super easy, in-app version of Photoshop that you can use to give your Snaps even more personality. To get your hands on this nifty new Snapchat feature, follow these easy steps and take your Snap art to a new level.

1. Update Snapchat

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If you haven't yet, make sure to update your Snapchat to its latest version (released July 5, 2017). The update also includes new features called Paperclip (which lets you attach links to your Snaps) and voice filters (so you can change up how you sound in video Snaps).

2. Take A Photo

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Experiment with this feature with a simple selfie... or maybe yet another photo of your roommate's cute dog.

3. Navigate To The Backdrops Tool

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First, tap the Scissors tool — it can be found on the right-hand side of your screen, underneath the text, drawing, and sticker icons. Then tap the bottom tool (the square with diagonal stripes) to open backdrops.

4. Add A Backdrop

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Choose any of the backdrops (there are eight so far, but they'll rotate daily like the filters), and it will appear over the entire photo.

5. Outline An Object

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Trace any objects that you want to bring in front of the backdrop (aka what you want the pattern not to cover). When you're done, some little sparkles will appear, wiping the outlined area free of the backdrop so you can clearly see the photo's subject.

6. Admire Your Masterpiece

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Voila! — a dog in a completely digital field of daisies!

So if you've grown weary of throwing various animal filters on all your selfies, backdrops are a new way for you to get creative with your Snaps. You didn't need another excuse to keep your Snap streaks going strong, but trying out the backdrops feature is definitely a good reason to do so.