Lovers of social media are all excited about the new ways in which you can publish photos and videos on Instagram. From vertical, horizontal and square photo options, Instagram stories, IGTV videos and reels, there are so many amazing ways to engage with followers r and deliver engaging content. As surprising as these new options are, it can be a little tricky to figure out what Instagram post and story sizes and formats are ideal for your content, right?
Here’s why we have put together a quick guide to decode all and different Instagram post sizes for each type of content and the best photo resolution to upload to Instagram for optimal look (yes, Instagram can reduce the image quality)!
And in case you need a table to keep track of all these Instagram image sizes (because let’s face it, there are a lot of them!) we have included a quick few lines here below.
What are the dimensions for Instagram?
The dimensions of Instagram posts, videos and photos have variable dimensions depending on the orientation of the photo and of the st rumento with which it is published. Here’s a short list of the most common Instagram photo and video sizes:
|Instagram post type||Proportions||Post size|
|Square photo||1: 1||1080 x 1080 px|
|Horizontal photo||1.91:1||1080 x 608 px|
|Vertical photo||4: 5||1080 x 1350 px|
|Instagram Stories||9:16||1080 x 1920 px|
|IGTV cover||1: 1.55||420 x 654 px|
|Square video||1: 1||1080 x 1080 px|
|Horizontal video||1.91: 1||1080 x 608 px|
|Video vertical||4: 5||1080 x 1350 px|
Instagram post size
When Instagram first launched in 2012 (it seems like a long time ago!), Users could only upload photos with an aspect ratio of 1: 1 . Users who wanted to show off their stunning landscape and portrait photos were forced to crop their photos into a square or use other apps to create workarounds.
Thankfully, Instagram listened to user feedback. and in 2015 it introduced new horizontal and vertical formats.
Do Instagram photos need to be square?
Your Instagram photos they don’t have to be square – you can also upload rectangular photos without cropping them. The trick is to make sure your photo is up to 1080px on the shorter side . Note that there are limitations: if you upload a photo that exceeds the aspect ratio (the width-to-height ratio of a photo), you will need to crop the photo.
That said, let’s talk about the best image size for Instagram photo posts, including vertical, horizontal, and traditional square format.
Square Instagram post size
Ideal size: 1080px by 1080px
The aspect ratio of a traditional square post is 1: 1. This is usually the easiest photo size to get on the first try due to the auto crop feature on most photo editing apps and on Instagram itself. Not to mention, you can take a square photo right in the iOS camera! For best results, your photo should be between 320 px by 320 px and 1080 px by 1080 px .
Does Instagram reduce image quality?
Have you noticed that your photos are uploaded blurry? The problem may come from files larger than 1080 px . If you upload an image larger than this format, Instagram will automatically compress the image. Photo compression can distort image details, greatly affecting quality.
The same is true when you upload an image smaller than 320 x 320 px . Instagram will expand the image, and consequently the pixels and blur.
To get the best possible photo in your feed, aim for square photo sizes of 1080px by 1080px. The compressed version on Instagram’s display will be around 600px by 600px, which will look flawless on both mobile and desktop without affecting resolution!
If that doesn’t seem to solve your compression problems either, try uploading the photos from the desktop. The Instagram web application preserves photo quality much more effectively than the mobile app!
What resolution does Instagram use?
According to Instagram, the app uploads your photos at the best possible resolution up to a width of 1080 pixels. As long as the photo width is between 320 and 1080 pixels, the app will keep the original resolution (provided that the aspect ratio of the photo is also correct). If the aspect ratio of the photo is not supported, it will be cropped automatically, which may affect the resolution of the photo.
If you want to do things right, make sure you resize the image to a maximum width of 1080 pixels. before uploading the image to avoid automatic resizing or compression.
How to resize photos for Instagram
To avoid quality issues with your Instagram photo, you should always try to resize your photo to the appropriate size and aspect ratio before uploading your photo to Instagram. You can resize your Instagram photo with a variety of desktop and web photo editors, such as Adobe Photoshop, LightRoom and others!
Instagram vertical post size
Ideal photo sizes: 1080px by 1350px
Wondering how to fit a vertical image on Instagram without cropping it? Vertical photos are easy enough to get right on the first try, although you’ll have to crop large photos to fit Instagram’s size.
What is the format of the vertical images ?
The ideal aspect ratio for vertical Instagram posts is 4: 5.
If you upload a larger image, such as a 4: 6 or 9:16 (the size of a Snapchat photo), you will be asked to crop a portion of the photo to fit.
How does a complete picture fit on Instagram?
If you want to upload your full vertical photo to Instagram without cropping it into a square, you can use the handy button to natural size when you upload your photo to automatically adjust your vertical photo (or horizontal photo) to the maximum available aspect ratio. Just tap the expand arrows in the lower left corner of the photo to fit the entire image on Instagram!
For example, the high fashion wedding dress designer Galia Lahav often uses vertical photos to capture the extraordinary details on her dresses. Cropping all that nuptial bliss into a 1: 1 square simply wouldn’t do the photo or dresses justice!
Speaking of details, the same rules about squeezing and enlarging photos apply here. To get the best resolution for Instagram, resize the portrait photo to around 1080px by 1350px. This way, automatic compression will not affect the quality of your vertical shot!
Instagram horizontal photo size
Ideal photo sizes: 1080px by 1350px
Let’s be honest: Getting the right horizontal dimensions for Instagram photos can be tricky . This is because the perfect aspect ratio for Instagram landscape photos is 1.91: 1 . At this size, your horizontal photo will look beautifully on Instagram without borders.
However, you can actually upload horizontal images with an aspect ratio up to 16: 9 and the app will automatically add a border around the photo.
How do you insert horizontal photos on Instagram?
Instagram made the insertion of horizontal photos easier than ever. Here’s how to do it:
- Open Instagram
- Tap the Add Post button (a square with a plus sign)
- Choose your photo or video to upload
- Tap the a button life size at the bottom left of the photo display (they look like two corners). This will automatically adjust your photo to horizontal ratio (or vertical if the photo orientation is vertical)
- Tap Next to continue uploading!
Check out these two photos by Traeger Grills to understand what we mean. In the first photo, the aspect ratio of the photo is 1.91: 1. There are no borders and the photo fits perfectly to the size of the Instagram post.
In the next photo, Traeger Grills used a photo at 16: 9. Because it is larger than the ideal aspect ratio, a border around the photo.
To obtain an optimal result at first try, make sure your photo height is at least 1080px. This will keep the quality of your photos on mobile and desktop devices high!
Instagram video post sizes
Video resolution ideal: Square and Carousel – 1080px x 1080px vertical – 1080px x 1350px horizontal – 1080px x 608px
If video is your preferred medium, it’s important to set the right size for uploading and publish your content.
The dimensions of the videos are the same as the images, except the horizontal format, which is 16: 9
The reason why we recommend a 16: 9 for landscape videos is that it will take a lot of time and effort to edit your video in the 1.9: 1 aspect ratio used in photo posts . Instagram users are used to viewing videos in 16: 9 format, so the time and effort to crop and edit your video to change it from 16: 9 probably isn’t worth it.
There there are also some minimum and maximum requirements to know when it comes to uploading your Instagram videos to your feed. Your video post on Instagram must be a maximum of:
- 30 frames per second
- 60 seconds in length
- 4GB file size
If your video passes any of these requirements , you won’t be able to upload it, so keep these numbers in mind when planning your video content.
Like Instagram photo posts, the orientation in which you shoot your video (square, horizontal or vertical) will determine the minimum and maximum resolution . The minimum resolutions are:
- Square video and carousel 600 x 600
- Vertical video 600 x 750
- Horizontal video 600 x 315
Since your video file will be compressed during upload, we recommend that you use the maximum resolution allowed. The maximum resolutions are:
- 1080 x 1080 square and carousel video
- 1080 x 1350 vertical video
- 1080 x 608 horizontal video
By using the maximum resolution in your videos you can preserve the quality, which is important for artist Laura Horn as she shows her followers her watercolor technique!
Ideal size for Instagram Stories: 1080px x 1920px
Instagram Stories are another great way to connect with your followers and post everything, from text posts, to live posts to uploading photos and videos! Instagram Stories content is meant to be viewed in portrait mode, so even if you can post horizontal photos and videos, they won’t display very well.
This is also another reason why the aspect ratio for Instagram Stories is different from the other post sizes we reviewed earlier!
You can upload photos and videos to Instagram Stories in any proportion from 1: 9: 1 to 9:16. However, it’s more likely to grab attention (and make your posts easier to see and understand) if you fill the entire screen with no borders.
The size of the photo you need to fill perfectly the entire Instagram Stories screen is a 9:16 aspect ratio and a size of 1080px by 1920px.
IGTV post sizes
Ideal IGTV cover size: 420 x 654 px
IGTV, or “the Youtube of Instagram” as it is sometimes called, debuted in 2018 with a unique vertical format. Previously, users had to shoot their content in a 9:16 long landscape format. However, after a series of feedback from users who found it difficult to film long-form content in this way, Instagram decided to allow horizontal videos on IGTV in May 2019.
This opens up a ton of new options for shooting IGTV content and some instagram post sizes to keep in mind. Here are all the dimensions to think about when it comes to your IGTV videos!
- Vertical IGTV videos have a minimum ratio of 4: 5 and a maximum of 9:16 (like Instagram Stories )
- Horizontal IGTV videos have a minimum aspect ratio of 5: 4 and a maximum of 16: 9
- One-minute preview option for IGTV (which inserts a preview snippet into the feed) is cropped to 4: 5 aspect ratio in the user’s feed
- One-minute preview is cropped in a 1: 1 square in the feed grid
- Your IGTV cover photo (you can choose an image from your video or upload your own) It should have an aspect ratio of 1: 1.55 and a resolution of 420px by 654px.