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How to make an Instagram filter

There are seemingly thousands of effects available on Instagram right now, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for one more. Here’s how to make your own Instagram filter. 

Despite what you might think, you don’t need to be a professional developer or artist to make your own Instagram filters. In fact, Meta has its own AR creation app – Spark AR Studio – which you can download for free to create Instagram and Facebook filters at home. 

We’ve put together this step-by-step guide to teach you how to make and post your own Instagram effects using Spark AR… 

What you’ll need: 

  • Spark AR Studio 
  • Facebook and Instagram accounts

How to make an Instagram filter

  1. Step

    Open Spark AR Studio

    You can download the app from how to make an instagram filter

  2. Step

    Choose a template or create your own filter from scratch

    We’ll be using the Face Distortion template for this example, but steps 5 to 10 will apply to any effect. how to make an instagram filter

  3. Step

    Click FaceDistortion to edit your filter

    If you’re making a mask, sticker or background, you may be asked to replace the placeholder asset with your own at this stage. how to make an instagram filter

  4. Step

    Make any adjustments to your filter

    Here, we’ve made the face and mouth bigger but you can make whatever changes you want to your filter. how to make an instagram filter

  5. Step

    Once you’re done, click Publish

    We’re now going to save the filter. how to make an instagram filter

  6. Step

    Click Export

    You’ll see a pop-up appear. how to make an instagram filter

  7. Step

    Name your filter and click Save to export it.

    This will save the filter to your computer as an .arexport file. how to make an instagram filter

  8. Step

    Click Publish again

    Next, we’re going to upload the filter. how to make an instagram filter

  9. Step

    Click Upload

    This will take you to Facebook’s Spark AR Hub. how to make an instagram filter

  10. Step

    Fill out your information, upload the file and hit Submit

    Facebook can take up to 24 hours to review your effect, so be patient. how to make an instagram filter


How do I link my Instagram account?

If you want to preview your effect on Instagram or have it attributed to your Instagram account, you’ll need to link your Instagram page with your Facebook account.

To do this, go to your Instagram settings, tap Accounts Centre, tap Set Up Accounts Centre, select Add Facebook Account and log in to Facebook. Then, just click Yes, Finish Setup to link your accounts.

My filter still hasn’t been approved

Facebook aims to approve filters and effects within 24 hours of submitting, but you might need to wait longer on weekends.

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