How to Delete Your Instagram Account (Or Temporarily Deactivate It)

Sometimes a break from Instagram is necessary

The Ultimate Guide to Instagram
The Ultimate Guide to Instagram
Introduction

What To Know

  • Open Instagram in a browser, and log in. Open your profile > Edit Profile > Temporarily disable... > pick a reason > Temporarily disable...
  • To delete an account, go to the delete link. Pick a reason, reenter your password, and press Permanently delete my account.

This article explains how to temporarily deactivate your Instagram account, or you can delete your Instagram account completely. Instagram doesn't currently let users disable their accounts from within the app, presumably for security purposes.

How To Disable Your Instagram Account

  1. Open your web browser (Firefox, Chrome, Safari, or other), type Instagram.com into the URL field, and hit Enter or Go.

  2. The Instagram homepage will appear, and you should see a button on the page that says Log in. If you're accessing it from a mobile device, it will be at the bottom of your screen. Click or tap it and log in to your Instagram account with your username and password.

    A screenshot of Instagram's sign-up and log-in page on desktop.
  3. Whether you're accessing it from the desktop or mobile web, you'll see a profile icon in the bottom menu to the far right, just like within the app. Click or tap it to be taken to your profile.

  4. Just beneath your profile details, you should see a big button that says Edit Profile. Click or tap it.

  5. Scroll down to the bottom of the next page and look for the blue link that says Temporarily disable my account. Click or tap on it.

    A screenshot of Instagram.com.
  6. Instagram will bring you to a page that provides you with a dropdown menu of options to choose why you want to disable your account.

    A screenshot of Instagram.com.

    Click or tap the drop-down and select the appropriate reason. Some suggested tips will then appear along with a request to re-enter your password if you'd like to keep going.

  7. Click or tap the big blue Temporarily Disable Account button to disable the account. Click or tap to confirm it if Instagram gives you a pop-up message (in case you clicked/tapped by accident).

    Don't freak out if you disable your account but can't get in after trying to reactivate it by logging in again a few minutes later. If you try to log back in via the mobile web browser or app immediately, you might receive a message saying, "We haven't finished disabling your account yet. If you want to reactivate it, try again in a few hours." You can only disable your account once a week.

    Instagram will bring you to a page to confirm that your account has been temporarily disabled. To reactivate it, you just need to log back in again via Instagram.com.​

You can restore your account at any time. An additional alternative to disabling or deleting is to simply limit access to your profile by making your Instagram profile private.

How to Permanently Delete Your Instagram Account

Just like temporarily disabling accounts, Instagram also doesn't let users delete their accounts from within the app. Again, this is presumably for security purposes.

  1. Open a web browser, sign in to Instagram, and go to Instagram's delete your account page. The page is only accessible through the direct link. There's no way to get there from your profile.

  2. To continue with the deletion process, click or tap the dropdown menu, and select your reason.

    A screenshot of Instagram.com.
  3. You'll be asked to re-enter your password. Do so.

  4. When you're ready, press Permanently delete my account.

    Deletion is permanent. You will never be able to restore your account and get all of your photos, videos, likes, comments, or followers back. Even if you decide to delete everything in the end, bear in mind that doing so doesn't mean your photos and videos will be gone from the web forever. Anything and everything you post or upload to Instagram (and social media in general) is still accessible by the social network itself.

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