Instagram Photo Size (2020)

You're likely reading this article because you want to know the best Instagram photo size to use when posting to Instagram. There are quite a few articles that go into the best Instagram photo size in complicated detail. While we will give that information for those who are looking for it, we also want to make this information as simple as possible for those who simply want to know the best Instagram photo size so they can correctly upload their pictures to the platform. This article was last updated in 2020 so it contains the Instagram photo sizes for 2020.

Instagram Post Size

There are actually a number of different types of Instagram photo sizes, but we will concentrate on the one that most people will be interested in which is at the core of the Instagram experience, the Instagram post. The Instagram post photo shows up in your friends feeds and on your wall. This photo is best when sized as as a square. Since these are the main photos on Instagram, they're quite important. The technical answer to the Instagram photo size for feed pictures is:
  • 1080px by 1080px
  • Aspect ratio of 1:1
This means if you take a horizontal photo, the right and left side of the photo will be cropped out.
Horizontal Instagram Post Size

It also means that if you take a vertical photo, the top and the bottom of the photo will be cropped out.

Vertical Instagram Post Size

Best Size Solutions

There are two pretty simple solutions to make sure you get the best Instagram photo size when you take pictures and images. The first is to choose to take a square photo. Most phones and cameras have an option to take square photos instead of the typical rectangle photos. Simply put your phone or camera on this setting and you'll be sure that you get everything you want in your photos and not accidentally cut part of the photo out when posted to Instagram. The biggest issue with this method is that other than Instagram, square photos aren't really a thing and can look strange in other formats like when sending to friends or posting on other social media platforms. If this is the case, another simple solution is to learn to make sure the important aspects of your pictures are in the center square of the frame when you happen to be taking a horizontal or vertical image. This will take a bit of practice, but once you get the hang of it you'll be sure to get the Instagram photo size correct when taking all your photos. It's a good habit to get into for any photo you take that has any possibility of ending up on Instagram.

Why Instagram Photo Size Is Important

Getting the correct Instagram photo size is important for a number of compelling reasons. The first and most important is that Instagram is a visual social media medium, so how your pictures and images look is important. The better they look, the better your Instagram account is likely to do. Getting the best Instagram photo size for your feed will make sure your pictures look the best that they can which can only help your feed. Understanding the size of Instagram photos is also important so that you can frame your pictures and images correctly when you're taking them. You are much more likely to find a picture doesn't quite work if you take images without understanding that it will show up square in many instances on Instagram. Knowing Instagram's photo size will ensure you're able to frame all your photos as best as possible whenever you're taking them for your account. Lastly, knowing the best pixel size (1080px by 1080px) will ensure that all your photos look crisp and clear on the Instagram format. You always want your pictures to look as good as they can and making sure the pixels aren't too high or low will leave your images looking their best on Instagram.

Horizontal Instagram Photo Size

While square pictures still are the best choice for your Instagram posts (because they show up the best in all of the places on Instagram), you can now have horizontal and vertical photos display without any cropping in your feed if you size them appropriately. If you decide to use these, this is the information you need to create the best horizontal or landscape Instagram photo size:
  • 1080px by 608px
  • Aspect ratio 1.91:1
Horizontal Instagram Photo Size

Vertical Instagram Photo Size

For those wanting to post vertical pictures or portrait photos to Instagram, here is the information you need to make these the best that they can be:
  • 1080px by 1350px
  • Aspect ratio of 4:5
Vertical Instagram Photo Size

Note, just because you have sized your horizontal or vertical photo appropriately, doesn't mean it will show up that way in your wall. In your wall, all photos are shown as squares, so if your photo was not originally sized as a square, it will be cropped automatically by Instagram, on your wall page.

Frequently asked questions

Do Instagram photos need to be square?

No! At one time all Instagram photos were square (1:1 aspect ratio) and it's still the default setting when you post a photo to the app, but you now have the option to change the default and posts photos as vertical (portrait) or horizontal (landscape) as well.

How do you fit a full photo on Instagram?

When you open up a photo on the Instagram app, it will automatically crop your photo square (1:1 aspect ratio). If you want to fit the full photo on Instagram, you can 1) click the expand arrows or 2) pinch the photo at the lower left which will expand the photo so it's no longer square.

What's the best Instagram photo size for carousel posts?

When using photos for Instagram Carousel posts, you can use square, horizontal or vertical photos. The key point is that once you decide on one (square, horizontal, or vertical) all the following photos will be cropped exactly like your first choice and can't be changed. Think carefully what format you want to use because this will be how all your Instagram Carousel photos will display.

What’s the best Instagram photo size for Instagram stories?

Instagram photo size for Instagram stories isn't quite as strict as other Instagram photos, but if the best photo size for Instagram stories is 1080px by 1920px with an aspect ratio of 9:16 as this will make the Instagram stories photo have no blacked out borders.