Instagram, is a visual social media platform. You’ll gain followers based on what your photos and images look like.
Beside celebrities, the most followed accounts, are generally cohesive and follow a certain aesthetic.
I love editing my Instagram posts and seeing how they all match on my grid. I’ve been using Instagram a lot recently, you can follow me at @lovekyrablog.
In this post, I’m outlining how I take, edit and decide on my photos so I can keep up my bright and clean feed.
* if you want to grow your Instagram, I have a blog post on BlushBloggers on how to become famous on instagram!*
How to take gorgeous Instagram photos
I take my photos on my iPhone XR. It’s very good quality and I often get asked what camera I use.
Usually, I take my photos on the square setting so I know what I’d see when cropped. This also means I have the opportunity to change props around until it suits my liking.
I recommend taking it in natural daylight too. You can edit brightness but the editing looks far more natural when shot in natural daylight. I also feel that the editing then looks more cohesive. As I said before, Instagram is all about good photos (and good editing!) with a consistent theme.
When doing flatlays, I like to lay my blanket beside the window with the curtains wide open. It gives plenty of daylight and it also makes the photo better quality.
I’ve found when shooting photos in a dimmer lighting, the photos come out more grainy. If you have a business Instagram account, they won’t let you promote bad quality images. This suggests that Instagram want you to post good quality images and are more likely to push those.
How to edit Instagram posts
There’s many apps to edit your Instagram posts. In this post, I’m going to talk through 3 of the most popular ones and explain why each one is good for editing your Instagram posts.
This is definitely most popular among the larger influencers. Lightroom can help you create the most natural-looking lighting when brightening up your posts.
This can be done by using the brightness curve. If you’re looking to edit your Instagram posts to fit a clean and bright theme, then I recommend Lightroom wholeheartedly.
I use a preset for my photos that I purchased on Etsy. It makes my Instagram photos all fit the same theme.
The positives of Lightroom are:
- You can save your editing as a preset meaning you can edit all your photos exactly the same.
- There’s endless editing possibilities
- It provides very natural looking editing if that’s your desired looks
- It’s free to download and use
- It doesn’t compromise the quality of photos
The negatives of Lightroom are:
- There’s no default filters to choose from
- You have to pay for presets if you can’t edit the photos to your own liking
- You have to pay for a premium membership which allows for more complex editing.￼
You may have heard about this when “VSCO girls” were all the trend. Although this trend has died down, there’s still many people who rely on VSCO for editing their Instagram posts.
I feel VSCO is better for those who want to edit their Instagram posts to fit a grungier theme. Many people who use VSCO to edit their posts have a feed with a typically lower exposure and grain added.
The positives of VSCO are:
- There are popular default filters available
- It offers the infamous grain feature
- You can save your own editing as a preset
- There’s many Instagram accounts to help you create new filters
- It’s easy to navigate and use
The negatives of VSCO are:
- It’s more limiting on what you can do to edit
- You have to purchase a membership to unlock premium features
- Using a high exposure can look unnatural
- You can’t edit single colour saturation as you can on lightroom
- You can only have 10 presets on the free membership
Canva is an app used primarily for Pinterest but it can also be used to create a cohesive Instagram feed by using its templates.
This app edits your Instagram posts by adding a background rather than a filter. I’d say this app is popular for quote pages.
The positives of Canva are:
- Very cohesive theme
- More artistic/decorative editing
- Good for quotes
- Can be used for many social media platforms
- Many possibilities and freedom
The negatives of Canva are:
- Limited filters and not very up-to-date
- Paid membership needed for better stock photos and fonts
- Won’t make the photos featured cohesive
- Can look fairly amateur if not used for a quote page
How do I make sure that my edited Instagram posts all look the same and cohesive?
You may want to see how your edited Instagram posts look in your feed before you post them. Wouldn’t that be great?
Luckily, you can! I have the app Planoly. You connect your account and it collects all your Instagram photos. Then, you can upload your edited posts on the app, without it actually uploading to Instagram! You can swap the order around and play around until it suits you.
You can plan up to 10 photos in advance and you can write the captions. Then, you can set a reminder on the app that reminds you to post it. You can’t post directly from the app but when you click post, it directs you to the Instagram app. All you have to do then, is hit publish!
This is a lifesaver if you’re forgetful and end up always remembering after the optimal time (like me!)
I use this app a lot, mainly for the planning feature but the reminders can also be useful. I like to see how the edited post would fit my feed and if the preset I’ve added works well with that photo!￼
What’s your go-to editing app for Instagram and what sort of theme do you aim for?