Instagram Photo Sizes Made Easy

Instagram Photo Sizes Made Easy
April 25, 2017 PicMonkey

They say there are only three things in this world you can count on—death, taxes, and that social media sizes that you’ve committed to memory will suddenly change out of the blue. Fear not, denizens of Instaland! ~We’re on top of it.~ We’ve thoroughly researched all facets of Instagram sizing, so all you need to do is worry about whether or not your feed has a cohesive aesthetic. (Or not! We love your rando artistic impulses.)

Optimal Instagram photo sizes:

  • For photo posts, make your images at least 320 pixels wide and no more than 1080 pixels wide.

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  • At a width of 1080 pixels, Instagram keeps your photo its original size, as long as its height is between 566 and 1350 pixels.
  • If your photo is below 320 pixels wide, it’ll be stretched to fit that limit. If it’s above 1080, it’ll be shrunk down.

Got it? Good. But there’s more stuff you should know about making your Instagram pictures as fabulous as you are, such as:

  • What’s up with Instagram’s expanded size and dimension options.
  • How to save your PicMonkey images at the perfect size for Instagram.
  • How to create Instagram posts using design templates.

Expanded size and dimension options for Instagram

Even though this change happened a while back, some people are still surprised to learn that you don’t have to crop your images into a square. This confusion might stem from the fact that when you go to add a new picture, it automatically tries to crop your photo into a square. You need to tap the button with the corner arrows on the far left to get your photo back to its original size.

This freedom to crop however you see fit makes a huge amount of sense. One out of every five photos posted to Instagram started out in landscape or portrait mode, so cropping everything to a square meant people were cut out of photos or those lovely distance shots just didn’t feel quite as grand. Now when you post a photo in Instagram, you can crop in both square and rectangular aspect ratios.

HOWEVER: While it’s true that you *can* post in a variety of different rectangular shapes, square posts are still gonna display the best on Instagram. If your image is portrait oriented, you won’t see the caption and the whole image on the same screen without doing a little scrolling. And landscape-oriented pics won’t take up as much real estate on the scroll, so you’re going to lose some of the wow-factor. This probably doesn’t affect you if you’re just running your personal feed, but it’s something to consider if you’re trying to create promotional content for a brand.

How to size Instagram photos in PicMonkey

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Start off with the highest resolution image you’ve got. To check the pixel dimensions of your photo, click Crop in the Basic Edits tab, and you’ll see the dimensions in the Actual size boxes. Type the pixel dimensions you want in the boxes and then drag the grid to a crop you like. Or you can just drag the corner handles on the grid and watch the dimension numbers change. Feel free to make a square if that’s your thing, or choose dimensions for a portrait or landscape photo. Just keep your eye on the actual size boxes so you know where your pixel width is at. When you’re done, click Apply.

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If you don’t want to cut anything out of your photo, you can also resize it using the Resize tool in Basic Edits. Change your pixel width to 1080, but make sure that the Keep proportions box is checked, otherwise your pic is gonna end up looking stretchy. (Also note that if your image was originally smaller than 1080 pixels, it’s not gonna look as crisp when you make it bigger.)

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Once you’ve added all the effects to your masterpiece and are ready to launch that puppy, click Save in the top toolbar. If your image is a photo, use the .jpg file format (the default setting) and choose the image quality. Go as high as you can (Sean? Yaaaas.) while keeping an eye on file size.

How to create Insta posts using design templates

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PicMonkey has a nice selection of Instagram templates if you’re looking to get a little graphic with your posts. (C’mon not like that… We just mean if you want something designed with built-in graphic image elements like overlays and text.) Each of these posts is automatically sized to your ideal 1080 x 1080 square post size.

If you’re angling for that perfectly square post with none of the extra frill, you can also use our Blank Instagram Post template to size your photo. Click Customize to launch the template into the Editor and then right-click it to replace our image with an image from your computer, Hub, or any other account you have connected to PicMonkey. It’ll be perfectly sized to 1080 x 1080 pixels.

Now you’re ready to upload your fab photo to Instagram!
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This article was written by PicMonkey Staff, a multicellular organism of hive-minded sub-parts who just wanna get you the ideas and information you crave, so you can make good pictures and take over the world.