How to Hide or Restrict Your Instagram Stories from Friends

BY George Tinari

Published 28 Feb 2017

Image credit: Instagram

Instagram stories are a fun way to keep everyone in loop with your personal life without always posting a permanent photo. Though Instagram users tend to have far more followers than on Snapchat, which means your story is exposed to even more people. While that may be good for exposure, you may not want all of those prying eyes seeing what you’re up to.

Fortunately, Instagram includes several settings that let you limit or completely restrict access to your stories. This also includes blocking certain people from sending you replies. Here is how to adjust these settings for your own privacy preferences.

Hide Your Instagram Story from Certain People

Instagram lets you hide specific people from ever seeing your Story. You just need to go into Instagram’s settings to make this adjustment.

Tap the Profile icon on the bottom right, then the Settings icon (gear) at the top. Under Account, tap Story Settings. Here, you can adjust the privacy.

Tap Hide Story From to begin your restricted access list. This shows you a list of all your followers (not people you follow). Just tap the names of anyone you want hidden or start typing their username find them. Keep tapping names until you’re satisfied and tap Done.

Henceforth, everyone you select here will never be able to see your Instagram story or your live videos. You can edit the list by coming back here at any time.

Note that these aren’t as nearly in depth as Facebook’s privacy settings. Instagram still grants no ability to adjust the visibility of individual posts and story entries. Restrictions can only apply to all story entries or none.

Restrict Message Replies from Your Story

Back in Story Settings, you can also adjust which people can interact with your story.

The setting Everyone is on by default, which means anyone who follows you can reply to your Instagram story. If you change this to People You Follow, only people you also follow back see the option to reply. Lastly, select Off to disable message replies for everyone.

One last option at the bottom irrelevant to privacy is the ability to save shared photos. If you turn this on, every photo or video you add to your story gets saved to your camera roll. This isn’t recommended (and is off by default) since stories are meant to have temporary content, but you can turn this on if you prefer to keep an archive.

In case you missed it, check out our guide on how to use Snapchat:

➤ How to Use Snapchat on Your iPhone: The Ultimate Guide