What is Vanish Mode on Instagram? Here’s what you need to know about the platform’s disappearing messages feature

using phone messaging in bed late at night
Instagram’s Vanish Mode lets you send secret messages that disappear when you’re done chatting.

Not all messages are meant to live forever, or at least that’s the idea behind Instagram’s Vanish Mode, which lets you send temporary, self-destructing messages in a special chat mode.

It’s like Snapchat’s self-erasing messages, and only takes effect when you manually turn it on; otherwise, your messages are as permanent as ever.

Vanish Mode is a relatively new feature that debuted for Instagram users in late 2020. 

How to use Vanish Mode on Instagram

Vanish Mode is easy to turn on and off – here’s how.

1. Open the Instagram app and go to the chat page by tapping the “Chat” icon at the top right corner of the screen. 

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Start a chat in the usual way, by tapping the “Chat” icon at the top right of the screen.

2. Open an existing chat or use the “New Message” button at the top right to create a new chat. 

3. To start Vanish Mode, swipe up from the bottom of the screen and release.

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Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and release your finger to start Vanish Mode.

4. The screen will turn black and a bunch of “Shush” emojis will fall from the top of the screen to indicate you’re in Vanish Mode. Send your messages as usual. The recipient’s chat window will also be black, with a message on screen indicating that it’s in Vanish Mode. 

5. When you want to end Vanish Mode and go back to messaging as usual, tap “Turn Off Vanish Mode” at the top of the screen. Both you and the recipient will exit Vanish mode, but you’ll still be able to see the messages you sent in Vanish mode until you close the window. After that, they’ll be gone forever.

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To end Vanish Mode, just tap the button in the chat window. The messages will be erased when you close the window.

There are a couple things to keep in mind about Vanish Mode:

  • This mode only works for one-on-one messages. Vanish Mode does not work for chats with more than two people.
  • If someone takes a screenshot in Vanish Mode, the other person is notified immediately.

Related coverage from Tech Reference:

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How long can Instagram Reels be? Here’s how to change the duration of your short-form video

Instagram reels
It’s easy to share an Instagram Reel in a variety of ways.

Instagram Reels are short-form videos on Instagram, not unlike (and clearly inspired by) TikTok videos. Users can upload videos that include music and video effects to share with their friends and followers. 

How long Instagram Reels can be

Reels can be either 15 or 30 seconds in length. By default, Instagram Reels are 15 seconds long. To change that, tap the “15” on the left side of the screen before you start to record. You can switch between 15 and 30 seconds right up until you begin recording, but after you begin, it’s locked in at the selected length. 

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To change the length of your Instagram Reel, tap the time marker icon on the left side of the screen.

How the length of Instagram Reels compares to other video formats

Instagram’s intention is that reels are brief, so they are shorter than most other Instagram video formats. Regular Instagram videos can be up to a minute in length, IGTV videos can be as long as 15 minutes, and livestream videos can be as long as an hour. For all the details, see our guide to Instagram video length

Reels are also shorter than the other major short-form video platforms, including TikTok and Snapchat Spotlight, both of which let you record videos twice as long – up to one minute.

Related coverage from Tech Reference:

Read the original article on Business Insider