What format to use for beautiful photos on Instagram? Detailed size guide

If you want to create great photos for Instagram, but the app’s compression algorithm is ruining your work, here’s a guide to sizes and formats to use on the image social network.

What format to use for beautiful photos on Instagram?  Detailed size guide

In 2019, Instagram is taking more and more space in the landscape of social networks and is establishing itself as a must. But like any major social network, it can be difficult to stand out. Here are some tips for taking beautiful photos and preventing the application from compressing your creations too much, and some tips for choosing the right size for your photos on Instagram and trying to get more likes.

Make beautiful photos for Instagram

To break into Instagram, unless you have a very specific concept, you will need to take beautiful photos. This is an approach combining both technique and art.

The technique

In terms of technique, several choices are available to you since you can take your photo directly from your smartphone or go through a camera then transfer your photos to your phone to publish them on Instagram, or even post them from a browser in mobile format. Remember, however, that the result will be displayed in small format and that this helps to erase the quality gap between these two categories of devices.

Let’s first forget the camera and focus on smartphones. Although it is not an obligation, the more your smartphone will be designed for the photo, the easier it will be to obtain the result you want. For that, you can take a look at our selection of smartphones that take the most beautiful photos.

Even without an expensive smartphone, you can still pull off some great shots, and the first step is to understand how your camera works. Once the technical part has been assimilated, and with a little practice, you can play with the limitations of your smartphone to create beautiful photos for Instagram. Remember that the network was originally intended to create “vintage” shots.

The artistic process

But the art is all in your eye and you can use various techniques to take better photos and gain popularity on Instagram. Of course, the rule of thirds is a must, but there are also a few other “classic” tricks, such as always keeping the horizon perfectly straight or even using the scenery to “frame” your subject and direct the gaze thanks to the vanishing points. Finally, don’t be afraid to move and rotate around your subject to find the best angle.

A good photographer will tell you that rules are meant to be broken, but to break them perfectly, you will already need to know and understand them. Note also that Instagram offers many photo tips and techniques.

Then think about photo editing. There are many editing applications such as Snapseed or Lightroom CC, which are very effective in bringing your photos to life. Do not hesitate to follow online tutorials to fully understand these tools. In another genre, there are also applications that will apply more artistic touch-ups and filters to your images for unique effects.

Last tip: remember to check what your photo looks like when it is framed in white: this is the background color of Instagram and most social networks.

What dimensions and format for an Instagram photo?

Now that you have a nice picture, it’s time toupload on Instagram, but be careful: the application compresses the images to prevent them from overloading the servers and the algorithm often degrades your photos. Also, to avoid this, there are a few tips, starting with choosing the size and dimensions of your photo.

In its terms of use, Instagram explains how its algorithm is applied:

When you share a photo with a width between 320 and 1080 pixels, we keep this photo in its original resolution as long as the aspect ratio is between 1.91:1 and 4:5 (height between 566 and 1350 pixels with a width of 1080 pixels). If the aspect ratio of your photo is not supported, your photo will be cropped to match the correct aspect ratio. If you share a photo with a lower resolution, we enlarge it to a width of 320 pixels. If you share a higher resolution photo, we scale it down to 1080 pixels wide.

To avoid Instagram’s image compression and make your photos look their best, just make them no larger than 1080 pixels wide, including an aspect ratio. between 1.91:1 (landscape) and 4:5 (portrait). The 1:1 (square) also remains a format still very often used on Instagram.

Here are the ideal Instagram photo formats in 2022:

  • Square picture: 1080 x 1080 pixels (1:1)
  • Landscape photography : 1080 x 566 pixels (1.91:1)
  • Portrait photograph : 1080 x 1350 pixels (4:5)

Note that there are two other formats to be aware of for Instagram:

  • Profile picture : 110 x 110 pixels
  • In stories: 1920 x 1080 pixels

If you follow these dimensions, your photos will no longer be spoiled by Instagram’s compression algorithm!

To crop and resize your photos to the correct format, you can do it via software on your computer, or applications. Photo Resizer for example will allow you to easily resize your photos so that they do not exceed 1080 pixels wide.

And here it is, over to you likes and new subscribers!


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