How to Save Snapchat Videos

Tips on grabbing videos from Snapchat before they disappear forever

Photo © Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images

Snapchat is a popular app used for sharing quick photos and videos, which disappear within a few seconds after viewing. To save Snapchat videos before they're gone for good, you have a few options to try out.

Saving Your Own Snapchat Videos: Easy!

If all you want to do is figure out how to save your own videos, then the solution is ridiculously easy. You simply do it the same way you save a photo before posting it.

  1. Record your video by holding the big clear button down for as long as you want.
  2. Tap the down arrow button that appears in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  3. You'll know that your video was successfully saved when a "Saved!" message pops up.
Three iOS Snapchat screens whowing record video button, save button, and Saved! message

Check your Memories by tapping the Memories icon located directly underneath the big clear snap/record button to find your saved video there. Then you can tap it to watch it or tap the checkmark icon in the top right corner to select the video followed by the save/export icon in the menu that appears at the bottom to save it to your device.

Three iOS Snapchat screens showing Memories button, Check/Select button, and Send button in Memories section

Easy enough, right? All you have to do is remember to actually hit that save button before you send it to your friends.

If you forgot to save your video before you sent it but also posted it as a story, you can still save it. From your Stories tab:

  1. Tap the three gray vertical dots that appear to the right of My Story. 
  2. Tap a snap video (if you have multiple stories posted).
  3. Then tap the down arrow that appears beside it to save it to your device.
Two iOS Snapchat screens showing three dot menu and send button

Saving Other Users' Videos: Not So Easy

Now, if you want to save Snapchat videos from other users who either send them to you or post them as stories, it's a bit more complicated.

The lack of a built-in feature to save other users' Snapchat photos and videos undoubtedly has to do with ensuring everyone gets the privacy they deserve. If you try to take a screenshot of someone else's photo snap that was sent to you, the app will notify the sender about it.

With that said, there are still a number of other ways you can capture other users' videos—some of which might work for you. You'll have to do some experimenting to find out for yourself. You have at least three options:

1. Use the built-in screen recording feature on any Apple device running iOS 11 or later (with caution). 

If you have an iPhone or iPad that's been updated to run iOS 11 or later, you can take advantage of the built-in screen recording feature to save Snapchat videos, but be warned! If you do this, any videos from friends that you record will trigger Snapchat to send those friends a notification that their videos have been recorded (similar to the screenshot notification for photos).

If you have no problem with your friends being notified that you've recorded their videos, then you can enable this feature by going to Settings > Control Center > Customize Controls and then tapping the green plus sign icon beside Screen Recording. Now when you swipe up from the bottom of your screen to access the control center, you'll see a new record button that you can tap to start recording your screen activity before you play Snapchat videos.

2. Use a screencast app to capture what plays on your screen (if you can find any).

Screencasts let you capture and record anything that happens on a screen. They're popular on desktop computers for hosting tutorials, slideshows, and any other visual presentations. 

There aren't as many free screencast apps available for mobile devices, particularly for the iOS platform, but you may come across a few for Android if you search long and hard enough through Google Play. Any apps that show up in the iTunes App Store are often removed quickly, but if you have a Mac that's running on OS X Yosemite, you can use its built-in mobile screencast feature as an alternative.

3. Use another device and its camera to record a video of the video. 

If you have no luck finding any screencast apps that work the way you want, and you either don't have a Mac running Yosemite, or don't want to deal with the hassle of hooking your phone up to your computer, then another option you have is to just grab another device – a smartphone, an iPod, a tablet, or even a digital camcorder—to record the Snapchat video via another separate video.

The picture and sound quality may not be great, and you may have trouble getting it to fit the screen of the device you're using to record it, but at least it's a relatively simple way (as long as you have access to an extra working device) to get a copy of it.

Forget About Using Third-Party Apps That Claim to Save Snapchat Videos 

Any third-party apps that say they can save Snapchat videos are lying and probably scammers, so you should definitely avoid downloading them and/or giving them your Snapchat login details.

In the fall of 2014 and then again in April of 2015, it was announced that Snapchat was going to do everything it could to ban all third-party apps from accessing it as a means for stepping up privacy and security measures.

Interestingly enough, you might still be able to find several different apps throughout the App Store and possibly Google Play, too, that still claim to be able to use your Snapchat login credentials to save photos and videos that you receive. Many of them even show that they've been recently updated, suggesting that they still indeed work.

Snapchat itself advises NOT to hand over your login details to any other app due to the potential security risks of those apps. If they're targeted by hackers, they could gain access to your login details, photos, and videos. It's happened before, and it's exactly why Snapchat has come down so hard on third-party apps.