Let’s face it: we’re living for all the fantastic new ways you can post your best photos and videos on Instagram. From portrait, landscape, and square photo options, Instagram stories, IGTV videos, and videos in your feed, there are so many incredible ways to engage with your followers and deliver eye-catching content. However amazing these new options are, it can be a little tricky to figure out the ideal Instagram image size for your content, right?
That’s why we’ve put together a quick guide for you to decode all the different Instagram post dimensions for each piece of content, and the best photo resolution to upload to Instagram for optimal clarity (yes, posting pictures on Instagram can lower image quality)!
And just in case you need a cheat sheet to keep track of all these Instagram image sizes (because let’s face it, there’s a lot!), we’ve included a handy cheat sheet and a Pinnable infographic. Major score! 🥅
Instagram Photo Post Sizes
When Instagram first launched in 2012 (it seems so long ago now!), users could only upload photos in a 1:1 aspect ratio. Users who wanted to display their beautiful landscape and portrait photos were forced to crop their photos into a square or use other apps to create workarounds. Talk about time-consuming!
Thankfully, Instagram listened to user feedback and introduced horizontal and vertical photo capabilities in 2015. 🙌
Now you can upload portraits and landscape photos without cropping them, but there are limits. If you upload a photo that exceeds the aspect ratios (the width-to-height ratio of a photo), you’ll have to crop your photo. ☹️
With that in mind, let’s talk about the best image size for Instagram photo posts, including the traditional square, portrait, and landscape!
Instagram Square Photo Size
Ideal Size: 1080px by 1080px
The aspect ratio of a traditional photo post is 1:1 square. This is usually the easiest photo size to get right on the first try because of the auto-cropping function on most photo editing app and Instagram itself. Not to mention, you can shoot a square picture directly in the iOS camera! For best results, your photo should be between 320px by 320px and 1080px by 1080px.
The Ambitionista uses the traditional Instagram Square photo for her posts, like the one below!
If you upload an image that’s larger than these measurements, Instagram will automatically compress the image for display. Extreme photo compression can distort image details, majorly impacting quality. ☹️
The same is true when you upload an image that’s smaller than 320px by 320px. Instagram will expand the image, causing pixelation and fuzziness. 👎
To get the best possible photo in your feed, aim for square photo sizes of 1080px by 1080px. The compressed version on that displays on Instagram will be around 600px by 600px, which will appear flawless on the Instagram mobile and desktop without affecting resolution!
Instagram Portrait Size
Ideal Photo Size: 1080px by 1350px
Wondering how to fit a full picture on Instagram without cropping? You can do that with portrait and landscape photos! Portrait photos are also fairly easy to get right on the first try, although you will have to crop oversize vertical photos to fit within the Instagram dimensions. The ideal Instagram portrait aspect ratio is 4:5.
If you upload a larger portrait, say a 4:6 or 9:16 (the size of a Snapchat photo), you’ll be prompted to crop a portion of the photo out to fit.
Couture wedding dress designer Galia Lahav frequently uses portrait photos to capture the stunning detail on their gowns. Cropping all that bridal bliss into a 1:1 square just wouldn’t do the photo – or the dresses – justice!
Speaking of detail, the same rules about photo compression and enlarging apply here. To get the best resolution for Instagram, size your portrait photo around 1080px by 1350px. That way, automatic compression won’t affect the quality of your vertical shot!
Instagram Horizontal Photo Size
Ideal Photo Size: 1080px by 1350px
We’ll be honest: getting the right Instagram horizontal photo dimensions can be tricky! That’s because the perfect Instagram landscape photo aspect ratio is 1.91:1. With these dimensions, your horizontal photo will display beautifully in Instagram without a border.
However, you can actually upload landscape photos up to an aspect ratio of 16:9, and the app will automatically add a black border.
Take a look at these two photos from Traeger Grills to see what we mean. In the first photo, the aspect ratio of the photo is 1.91:1. There’s no border, and the photo fits perfectly within the Instagram post dimensions.
In the next photo, Traeger Grills used a 16:9 landscape photo. Because this is larger than the ideal aspect ratio, a border is automatically added around the photo.
If you frequently use landscape photos in your feed, it’s best to stick to the same aspect ratio for each. Otherwise, your followers may be unnecessarily distracted from your show-stopping photos as they scroll!
To nab the best horizontal photo size for Instagram on the first try, make sure the height of your photo is at least 1080px (we’re sensing a theme here! 🔍). This will keep your photo quality high on mobile and desktop!
Before we move on to Instagram video post dimensions, let’s do a quick recap!
The aspect ratios for Instagram are:
- 1:1 aspect ratio for square photos
- 4:5 aspect ratio for portrait photos
- 1.91:1 aspect ratio for landscape photos
The best Instagram image size for posts are:
- 1080px by 1080px (Square)
- 1080px by 1350px (Portrait) and
- 1080px by 608px (Landscape).
Whew, that’s a lot of different aspect ratios to keep track of! 🤯Thankfully, Tailwind for Instagram has a handy cropping function that automatically trims your uploaded post image to the closest acceptable ratio.
If you want to crop your photo to a square, portrait, or landscape, you can just click on our Crop button and choose your desired ratio! 💥
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Instagram Video Post Dimensions
Ideal Video Resolution: Square and Carousel – 600px x 600px Portrait – 600px x 750px Landscape – 600px x 315px
If video is your favorite medium to connect with your followers, it’s important to get the right dimensions to make uploading and posting your content a breeze. That way, you can upload on-the-go footage like travel blogger Helene Sula’s tantalizing glimpse of Germany below!
Earlier this year we penned a complete guide to Instagram video sizes and dimensions that is jam-packed with tips and tools to edit your Instagram videos, as well as all the video requirements you ever wanted to know about when it comes to Instagram.
Let’s talk about some of those requirements below, including aspect ratios, length, and required dimensions!
Just like photo posts, you have the option of using square, horizontal or landscape videos in your feed. The aspect ratio of each is the same as photo posts, except for landscape videos:
- 1:1 aspect ratio for square and carousel videos
- 4:5 aspect ratio for portrait videos
- 16:9 aspect ratio for landscape videos
The reason that we recommend a 16:9 aspect ratio for landscape videos is that it will take a lot of time and effort to edit your video into the 1.9:1 aspect ratio used in photo posts. Instagram users are accustomed to viewing videos in 16:9 ratio, so the time and effort to crop and edit your video to change it from 16:9 probably isn’t worth it. 😪
There’s also some minimum and maximum requirements to know when it comes to uploading your Instagram videos to your feed. Your Instagram video post must have a maximum of:
- 30 frames per second
- 60 seconds in length
- File size of 4 GB
If your video exceeds any of these requirements, you won’t be able to upload, so keep these important numbers in mind when planning your video content! 😎
Like Instagram photo posts, the orientation you shoot your video in (square, landscape, or portrait) will determine what the minimum and maximum resolutions are for each. The minimum resolutions are:
Square and Carousel Instagram Video Minimum Resolution is 600 x 600
Portrait Instagram Video Minimum Resolution is 600 x 750
Landscape Instagram Video Minimum Resolution is 600 x 315
Because your video file will be compressed when you upload, we suggest using the maximum resolution allowed. The maximum resolutions are:
- Square Instagram Video Maximum Resolution is 1080 x 1080
- Portrait Instagram Video Maximum Resolution is 1080 x 1350
- Landscape Instagram Video Maximum Resolution is 1080 x 608
- Carousel Instagram Video Maximum Resolution is 1080 x 1080.
By using the max resolution in your videos you can preserve crystal clarity, which is important for artist Laura Horn as she shows her followers her watercolor technique!
Ideal Instagram Stories Size: 1080px x 1920px
Instagram Stories are another amazing tool for connecting with your followers and posting everything from text posts, hosting Instagram Lives and uploading photos and videos! Instagram Stories content is meant to be viewed in portrait mode, so even though you can post landscape photos and videos, they won’t show up as well on Stories.
That’s also another reason that the aspect ratios for Instagram Stories is different from the other post sizes we went over before!
You can upload photos and videos to Instagram Stories in any aspect ratio from 1:9:1 to 9:16. However, you’re more likely to capture attention (and make your posts easier to see and understand) if you fill up the entire Stories screen with no borders.
The photo dimension you need to fill the entire Instagram Stories screen perfectly is a 9:16 aspect ratio, and a 1080px by 1920px size.
IGTV Post Dimensions
Ideal Cover Photo Size: 420px x 654px
IGTV, or “Youtube for Instagram” as it’s sometimes called, debuted with a portrait-only option in 2018. Previously, users had to shoot their content (sometimes an hours worth!) in a 9:16 long horizontal ratio. However, after a crush of feedback from users who found this difficult to film long-form content this way 😩, Instagram opted to allow landscape videos on IGTV in May 2019. Hooray! 🎉
This opens up a ton of new options for shooting IGTV content, and a few post dimensions to keep in mind. Here are all the dimensions to think about when it comes to your IGTV videos!
- Vertical IGTV videos have a minimum aspect ratio of 4:5 (portrait) and a maximum of 9:16 (think Instagram Stories)
- Horizontal IGTV videos have a minimum aspect ratio of 5:4 and a maximum of 16:9
- The One-Minute Preview Option for IGTV (which places a preview snippet in your feed) is cropped to a 4:5 aspect ratio in the user feed
- The One-Minute Preview is cropped to a 1:1 Square in your 9-grid
- Your IGTV Cover Photo (you can choose a still from your video as the Flourish Collaborative did below, or upload one!) should have an aspect ratio of 1:1:55 and resolution of 420px by 654px.
What’s The Best Instagram Image Size?
Whew! All the exciting new features on Instagram have opened up a world of new content opportunities and amazing ways to engage with your followers. They’ve also created a few new aspect ratios and dimensions to keep in mind when creating that content! To quickly recap the ideal image sizes for all types of Instagram content:
- Instagram Photo Square: 1080px x 1080px
- Instagram Photo Portrait: 1080px x 1350px
- Instagram Photo Landscape: 1080px x 608px
- Instagram Video Square: 600px x 600px
- Instagram Video Portrait: 600px x 750px
- Instagram Video Landscape: 600px x 315px
- Instagram Video Carousel: 600px x 600px
- Instagram Stories Photo: 1080px x 1920px
- IGTV Cover Photo: 420px x 654px
If you’re stressing about which type of image size makes the most sense for your content, and whether using a mix of portrait, landscape, and square photos will affect the look and feel of your 9-grid… don’t worry!
Your content will appear in a landscape, portrait or square aspect in your users’ feeds, but will be cropped to a 1:1 square preview in your actual 9-grid. Your users will have to select your photo (or stumble across it while scrolling!) to see the full picture.
Plus, you can always plan out your feed and double-check how all of your photos work together with a feed planning tool, like Tailwind’s 9-Grid Preview!
Being able to carefully design and maintaining a gorgeous 9-grid feed is a crucial part of any solid Instagram strategy. Curious what else should be included in your Instagram marketing strategy? Sign up for our free Instagram 101 webinar below!
Our own Rebekah Radice walks you through building an Instagram strategy that WORKS 💥and incorporates valuable tips, tricks, and tools to get the most out of your Instagram account.
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Kristen Dahlin is a Content Marketer at Tailwind — a Pinterest and Instagram scheduler and analytics platform. A recent graduate of OU with a degree in Entrepreneurship and Venture Management, Kristen is living in rural Oklahoma with her husband Kyle, daughter Sophie, terrier Kerouac, and a very temperamental flower garden.