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How to use Vanish Mode on Instagram

Snapchat might have introduced the concept of disappearing messages to the world back in the day, but it isn’t the only app that carries the sneaky chat feature.

Meta announced Vanish Mode for Facebook Messenger and Instagram back in 2020, enabling disappearing messages, photos, videos, GIFs and stickers across the two social platforms. This content will vanish the moment one user leaves the chat or switches Vanish Mode off and there’s no option to copy, save or forward disappearing messages. Not only is this convenient for privacy but it also helps save storage on your smartphone.

Vanish Mode only works with accounts you’ve already connected with so you shouldn’t need to worry about unwanted disappearing messages from strangers. The feature is also unavailable for certain professional accounts.

Scroll down to learn how to activate Vanish Mode in your own Instagram chats.

What you’ll need 

  • A smartphone 
  • An Instagram account 

The Short Version 

  1. Open Instagram 
  2. Tap the message icon 
  3. Select a chat 
  4. Swipe up to switch on Vanish Mode

How to use Vanish Mode on Instagram

  1. Step

    Open Instagram 

    We’ll be using the iOS app for these screenshots, but you can also activate Vanish Mode using the same steps on the Android app. How to Use Vanish Mode on Instagram

  2. Step

    Tap the message icon

    This is the icon that resembles a small arrow in the upper right corner. How to Use Vanish Mode on Instagram

  3. Step

    Select a chat 

    You can select an existing conversation or tap on the pen tool in the upper right corner to start a new chat. How to Use Vanish Mode on Instagram

  4. Step

    Swipe up to switch on Vanish Mode

    The final step is to swipe up from the bottom of the screen to activate Vanish Mode. You can later swipe up again to turn off Vanish Mode. How to Use Vanish Mode on Instagram


Does Vanish Mode delete messages on both sides?

Yes, Vanish Mode deletes the entire conversation for both users when one user leaves the chat or switches Vanish Mode off. It’s important to note that users can take screenshots in Vanish Mode but they cannot do so without notifying the other user in the chat.

Can you tell if someone has been using Vanish Mode?

Only the users in the chat will know if they have entered Vanish Mode and will receive notifications when the feature is toggled on or off.

Why is Vanish Mode unavailable?

If Vanish Mode is unavailable for you, it may be that you’re located in a region that doesn’t support the feature. Vanish Mode is currently unavailable in Japan and Europe.

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