How to Archive Photos in Instagram

Instagram has a new feature to archive posts. It makes them private, so only you can see them, without deleting the post and losing the comments and likes.

Instagram Archive Posts
Instagram Archive Posts
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Instagram has introduced a way to archive photos in your Instagram account. This takes them off your public profile feed and switches them to a private state so that only can see them. But it stops short of deleting them. That means the comments and ratings are preserved, and you can also restore it back to your public feed with a single click.

It was initially rolled out only for some users, but as of mid-June 2017, it should be available on all user accounts.

Here’s a rundown of how it works.

A Word of Caution

First, though, a word of caution if you plan to temporarily disable your Instagram account at some point. Some users have reported that after archiving posts, then temporarily disabling their account, then re-enabling their account, that their archived posts have disappeared.

I’ve tried it myself and I couldn’t reproduce this issue–my archived posts were still showing up in the archive section when I re-enabled the account. But if you’re in this position, something to try is to remove the app from your phone and then re-install it. Some users have reported that that restores the archived posts.

How Instagram’s Archive Feature Works

You should see a new small icon at the top right of the screen in the Instagram app. It looks like a clock with an arrow going counterclockwise. Like this:

Instagram Archive Posts

It’ll then open the post archive page. If you haven’t archived any images before, it’ll obviously be blank, and you’ll see this message.

Instagram Archive Posts

To actually archive a post is very simple. Open the individual post in the app and click on the three dots (…) at the top right.

You should then see the option to archive it.

Instagram Archive Posts

It’ll then be added to your archive page and removed from your public profile. Only you have access to it now.

Instagram Archive Posts

To restore it, click on the post and choose Show on Profile.

Instagram Archive Posts

And that’s about it. Instagram is rolling this out to accounts gradually and I have no idea what determines the order of the rollout. But if you don’t have it already you should have it soon.

49 thoughts on “How to Archive Photos in Instagram”

  1. Does Instagram moderate any photos that are archived? Like sexy photos? Basically what I’m saying is are my archived risky posts safe from being deleted by Instagram?

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  2. Hello I have my live stream set up to archive all my videos. However when I go to view them nothing is in my archived folder. Any suggestions on what I am.possibly doing wrong.
    Thanks

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  3. The archive symbol is now at the top right on my profile instead of the 3 dots. This means I can’t switch to my other Instagram account – tapping my name isn’t working either. Can anyone help?

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  4. I archived a post and then wanted to put it back on my feed so I did the whole “return to feed” and now it’s completely gone. I can’t find it anywhere. Help!!!

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  5. Do we know if followers will receive notifications when an archived photo is restored? For instance, if the restoration might be my “first post in awhile” which usually sends out a notification, or if my followers have turned on notifications for my new posts.

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  6. I disabled my account for a week due to personal reasons and after reactivating my account again all my archive photos are gone. My profile was like new. I really need them back. If you guys know what to do. I’m devastated :(

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  7. Are you able to use the archive feature to, in essence, “schedule” your posts for maximum engagement purposes?? For example, if I take a pic, set up my post with caption, etc, then post and archive…then I restore it later during the recommended 7p to 9p timeframe for the best exposure, will it post to the feed in real time? Or will it basically back-date the time and place the archived post way down on everyone’s feed based on the time it was originally generated?? I hope my question makes sense…lol

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    • It makes sense, but I’m not sure of the answer off-hand. My guess is that it will backdate to the original posted time, but I haven’t tested that. There are other ways to schedule posts (some here, although Instagram generally discourages it, and some of them run afoul of Instagram’s rules. The safest options are essentially beefed up reminder services. Ones like Sendible or Buffer, where you can do much as you describe but you have to manually hit publish when you get the reminder.

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  8. I had the same problem when I temporally disabled my account the archive button went when I reactivated it but then I deleted the app and installed it again and it was back!! yayy

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  9. There is a glitch with the Archive feature on instagram!! I disabled my account 2 weeks ago I waited 1 week & reactivated my account only to find all of my photos were removed my photo count however still displays 160 but, my actual page only shows 3 photos I’ve tried re-disabling my account again but instagram won’t allow me it keeps saying “sorry you can only deactivate your account once a week try please back in a few days” but it’s been over two keeps now please help

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  10. Had my archive on my user, but now it had dissappeared from my profile. Why?? Tried to contact Instagram, but getting no response

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    • I don’t know–I’m only speculating–but it might be that they’re testing it and finding bugs that need squashing so are adjusting the rollout. It’s still accessible on my account, but I don’t know why it’s disappearing off some accounts.

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        • Instagram is rolling it out gradually to some accounts. It’s unclear what the roll-out schedule is or what criteria is used for prioritizing which accounts get it before others.

  11. I was just archiving some photos 2 days ago and now there’s no option for me to archive any of my posts and the section to see my archived photos is gone… Does anyone know what’s going on??

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  12. I archived a photo of mine a week ago to try out the archive feature. And then I disabled my Instagram account for a few days due to personal reasons. Now when I enabled it, the archive button is not there. My lovely photo is missing! How do I get my photo back?? :'(((

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  13. I had this feature the other week but it wasn’t there by the next day I don’t know what happened but is they a solution?

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    • Sorry, I don’t have an answer–I haven’t tried disabling my account so haven’t seen this happen. I don’t know of any trick that would magically make them reappear. Your best bet is to contact their customer support line (google “instagram customer service number” for some contact numbers).

      Reply

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