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How to Save Edited Instagram Photos Without Posting Them

While sharing your edited photos with your followers can be exciting, there are times when you may want to save them without actually posting them. Whether it’s to create a curated feed, keep personal memories private, or save photos for later use, it’s essential to know how to save edited Instagram photos without sharing them.

In this blog post, we will guide you through the process step-by-step.

Why Would I Want to Do This?

While you could just use a photo editing app or the built-in tools on iOS and Android to make edits and add filters to your photos, Instagram makes the whole editing process pretty easy and addictive. Plus, there could be a specific Instagram filter that you’re in love with and want to use on some of your photos, but don’t necessarily want to post those photos on your Instagram page.

With that said, there’s an easy trick that you can do if you’re wanting to use Instagram’s own editing tools on some photos, but don’t want to actually post them up.

Step-by-Step Guide to Saving Edited Instagram Photos

Step 1: Select and Edit a Photo

In the upload screen, select the desired photo from your device’s gallery. Use Instagram’s editing tools to enhance the photo according to your preferences. Adjust the brightness, contrast, apply filters, or make any other adjustments needed to create the perfect image.

Step 2: Avoid Additional Editing Features

When editing your photo, be cautious about activating additional editing features offered by Instagram. These features may include stickers, text captions, or interactive elements that could accidentally trigger a post. To ensure your edited photo isn’t inadvertently published, focus solely on the essential editing options.

Step 3: Save as a Draft

Once you’re satisfied with the edits, it’s time to save your photo as a draft. To do this, tap on the back arrow at the top-left corner of the screen. Instagram will prompt you with the option to “Discard” or “Save Draft.” Select “Save Draft” to store your edited photo within the app for future use.

Step 4: Confirm Successful Draft Saving

After saving your edited photo as a draft, it’s crucial to confirm that the process was successful. To do this, navigate to your profile page and tap on the camera icon. From there, scroll through your drafts to ensure the photo you just edited is safely stored.

The Trick: Use Airplane Mode

Doing this involves temporarily enabling aeroplane mode on your phone. You’re technically still posting the photo to your Instagram page (or at least attempting to), but having aeroplane mode on will result in a failed upload. However, the photo will still be saved locally to your phone since there was at least an attempt to post it up.

To do this, pick the photo that you want to edit and make your edits (or add a filter to it) like you normally would, and then hit “Next” in the top-right corner of the screen.

When you get to the screen where you can type in a description, add a location, and more, enable aeroplane mode. You can do this on iPhone by swiping up from the bottom to bring up Control Centre, or swiping down from the top on Android to access the toggle shortcuts.

Go back to Instagram and tap on “Share”.

Obviously, the photo won’t get posted successfully, and you’ll see a small banner that says, “We’ll try again once there’s a better connection.” At that point, your edited photo will get saved locally to your phone.

Next, simply tap on the “X” button to the right of that small banner to cancel the upload entirely.

Next, tap on “Remove” when the popup from the bottom appears. This will prevent Instagram from retrying the upload once you turn off aeroplane mode. After that, you can disable aeroplane mode and enjoy your Instagram-edited photo without actually having to post it to Instagram.

The Limitations of Instagram’s “Save Draft” Feature

While Instagram’s “Save Draft” feature provides a convenient way to store edited photos without posting them, it’s essential to be aware of its limitations.

One potential limitation is the possibility of drafts disappearing. This can occur if you switch devices, log out of your Instagram account, or if the app crashes unexpectedly. To mitigate this risk, consider backing up your Instagram drafts by saving the edited photos to your device’s gallery or using third-party apps specifically designed for Instagram photo management.

Precautions and Recommendations

To prevent accidental posts or drafts disappearing, follow these precautions and recommendations:

1. Regularly check for app updates: Instagram frequently releases updates to enhance security and functionality. Staying updated on the latest version of the app reduces the risk of encountering bugs or glitches.

2. Be cautious when switching devices: If you edit a photo on one device and switch to another, drafts may not sync automatically. Ensure you save your edited photos locally or use cloud storage solutions to access them from different devices.

3. Backup your edited photos: To minimize the risk of losing your edited photos, consider creating regular backups. You can save them to a secure cloud storage service, transfer them to your computer, or use dedicated photo management apps like Google Photos or Apple Photos to keep your memories safe.


Saving edited Instagram photos without posting them provides the flexibility to curate your feed, keep personal memories private, or save images for later use. By following the step-by-step guide we’ve provided, you can easily save your edited photos as drafts within the Instagram app.

Remember to use caution and stay informed about app updates and potential limitations of the “Save Draft” feature. Consider utilizing third-party apps that offer additional privacy and organization features, always verifying their trustworthiness before use.

Now that you know the secret to saving your edited Instagram photos privately, go ahead and start curating your perfect feed!

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