How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

During some of my toughest mental health days over the past two years I found comfort in an unexpected place: Instagram.

While social media is often considered more harmful than helpful to people’s self-esteem, sense of security, and overall well-being, I wasn’t chasing likes or seeking solace in my Instagram feed or other people’s Stories. I started using the platform’s Close Friends feature — which launched in 2018 — more frequently, and I found that sharing Stories with a carefully curated group of people felt safer and more fruitful than posting updates to all of my followers.

For anyone unfamiliar with the Close Friends feature, it lets you share Stories with a select group of users instead of with every random account, casual acquaintance, family member, and colleague who follows you. The feature won’t alert people if you add or omit them from your Close Friends list, but those who’ve made the cut will know they’re viewing a Close Friend Story when they see a green ring around a user’s profile photo and Instagram Story, or a green sticker in the upper right hand corner of an individual Story.

I posted my first regular Instagram Story in 2018, and primarily used the feature to share idyllic snapshots from my daily Manhattan commute, photos of iced coffee taken with Portrait Mode, videos of friends that were too goofy to make the feed, and other aesthetically gorgeous content intrinsic to the platform. It wasn’t until 2020 — when I was struggling to navigate crushing COVID-19 anxiety, the nationwide response to George Floyd’s murder, and the looming presidential election — that I regularly started using Close Friends. And in 2021, the feature helped me work through unfathomable tragedies like the Capitol riot and mass shootings, along with the stress of anti-vaxxers, anti-maskers, and the discovery of new COVID-19 variants.

The feature created a safe space where I could express my beliefs and concerns without fear of judgment or repercussions. I initially used Close Friends to share serious, reflective commentary on the state of the world, but I grew so comfortable with the added layer of privacy that I began sharing everything from TV show recommendations and physical therapy updates to Chipwich glamour shots and scenes from my daily walks with the limited group of followers, too.

Today, I almost exclusively use Close Friends when posting Stories. The essential feature helps me feel less exposed, more relaxed, and free to be my truest self online. I’m convinced it’s the key to enhancing your Instagram experience.

The pivot to Close Friends

When the 2020 news cycle started regularly weighing me down with grief, worry, and heartache I changed the way I used social media entirely. I could no longer summon the emotional energy needed to curate peppy tweets or Stories, so I stopped posting altogether for a while. I wanted to use social media to share my raw emotions, fears, and pain with others — for the sake of my own mental health and to let my friends know they weren’t alone in their struggles — but I didn’t want to broadcast those intimacies to all of Twitter or my 500 Instagram followers, and potentially anyone who spots my public Instagram.

I get the occasional follow or Story view from a stranger. It’s mostly harmless, but this year I realized that while I’m comfortable publicly posting to my feed, I don’t want all of my followers seeing the private life snippets I share in Stories. (No matter how boring they may be.) I took several steps to make my Instagram Stories more secure, and I started being more mindful when posting. Now, before I upload a Story I stop and consider whether it’s better suited for the eyes of all my followers or my list of 60 Close Friends (give or take a few depending on the content). More often than not, the Close Friends list wins. While I’m not necessarily “close friends” with every person on the list, I value each of them and trust that if they saw me in crisis they wouldn’t text Gossip Girl. In addition to my best friends, the list includes dozens of former colleagues and pals from college. I don’t necessarily speak to or hang out with them on a regular basis, but I still cherish them and want to keep them updated on my life.

I don’t shy away from publicly posting celebrity content, sharing articles I’ve written, or wishing people a happy birthday on Stories, but when I need to vent, give the occasional crush update, share an embarrassing story, or provide an unfiltered look at my life I smash the Close Friends button without hesitation.

Everyone uses Close Friends differently, but when I put a call out on Twitter asking fans of the feature to share why they like it, several common themes popped up. Some utilize the feature to share content with a single user (such as a best friend or a crush), while others curate a Close Friends list to “soft launch” relationships, or keep content that features their significant other private. Many parents take advantage of the private feature when sharing photos of their children online. And one of the most popular reasons people use Close Friends is to hide certain Stories from the overly watchful eyes of judgmental family members or bosses.

The feature lets people establish solid, personalized boundaries on Instagram, so if you’re not already taking advantage of Close Friends, I highly suggest you give it a shot.

Close Friends, assemble

Click the three lines in the upper righthand corner of your Instagram profile.

Select “Close Friends.”

There, you can browse a list of all of your followers (or search for specific people by name) and choose which users to add.

Next time you create a Story and want to share it with the select group simply tap the “Close Friends” option at the bottom of your screen and voila!

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

If you don’t use Instagram Stories or want to start hiding select Stories on other platforms, consider ramping up your privacy settings on Facebook Stories and Snapchat Stories, too.

Whether you’re using social media to celebrate, complain, or share life updates, just remember: You don’t have to show everyone every part of your Story.

You can count your best friends on one hand, but with Instagram Close Friends you can add as many as you want.

What is the Instagram Close Friends feature?

Close Friends is a feature that allows you to create a private list of users that can see your Instagram stories. A kind of VIP club made up solely of the users you want.

This list of close friends is only for your Instagram stories, so either videos or photographs. It does not apply to posts on your feed, Reels or videos. To limit access to this content, you can block certain users or close your account.

If you have a public account, this option can be useful for limiting the content on your stories to a reduced group of people or friends.

How to Create a List of Close Friends

From the Instagram mobile app you can create a list of your close friends. The first thing you need to do is create one, and from there you can edit it as much as you want by adding or removing users.

Follow these steps to set up and create your list of Instagram Close Friends!

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

1. Open Instagram app

As always, remember to log into the account you want to create the list on.

Pay attention to this because if you go wrong and limit your company account, you can end up damaging your exposure.

2. Click on Settings

The button with three horizontal lines is visible on your feed, where you can alter anything related to your account.

3. Let’s Go!

If this is your first time making a Close Friends list, Instagram will bring you to the settings screen. To continue, you just need to click on ‘Get Started’.

4. Add your Instagram close friends

The first thing you will see is a series of suggestions of people to add to your Close Friends list, which Instagram has made from the people you follow.

If you want to add a particular user, you can search for him/her by clicking on the magnifying glass at the top.

5. Create your list

Once you have added the users you want as part of your list, click ‘Create List’.

Instagram will then invite you to upload your first story to share with your VIP friends. You don’t have to do it right now, you can come back later and upload your first post at another time.

❌ How to Remove a Close Friend from Your List

When you click into your list, you can remove any user you want just by clicking ‘Delete’. Or if you prefer, click on ‘Delete all’ to remove all members at once.

How to Upload a Story to Instagram Close Friends

The Close Friends option is for sharing content on your stories, but only for those users you want to see it.

How to share content for just your list

It’s simple: all you have to do is to upload a story as if it were public, adding stickers, editing the filter, mentioning the profiles you want.

Instead of clicking on your story, you have an option on the right for Close Friends: it is easy to recognize, look for a green circle with a star in the middle.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Now your content can only be seen by those you have chosen to add to your Instagram Close Friends list.

How to Know if Someone Has You in Their Close Friends List

To sum up with what Instagram best friends list is about, here you have some important features:

✅ Can you find out if you are on someone’s Close Friends list?

From your Instagram profile, you don’t have access to any friend list apart from the one you have created.

You can’t know if someone has added you to their list until they share a story with their Close Friends and you are in it: in this case, the user that shared the story appears with a green circle instead of the normal blue.

✅ Who can see your Close Friends list?

The Close Friends list you have created can only be seen by you, no one else. None of your followers or other Instagram users can see this list, whether they are on the list or not.

So don’t worry about leaving certain users out, they’re not going to keep up with your list.

✅ Does Instagram notify users about your list?

Absolutely not. Instagram will not send any notifications to any user about changes to your Close Friends list. Neither when you add a new user nor remove someone.

Now you can create your Instagram Close Friends list. Any questions or queries? Let us know in the comments.

Start working now on your Instagram Marketing Strategy with this Guide by Metricool.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

You may not want to share your Instagram Stories with every one of your hundreds of followers. Thanks to the Close Friends feature, you can curate a select list.

If you’ve ever seen someone’s Instagram Story have a green ring around it, that means it’s only for that person’s Close Friends list, which you’re on. The Close Friends feature allows you to post Instagram Stories for a particular group of followers that can be changed at any time. When you add or remove someone, Instagram won’t notify them.

Here’s how to add people, edit, and post Stories for your Instagram Close Friends list using the Instagram app for iPhone and Android devices.

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How to use the Close Friends list on Instagram

1. Open Instagram on your phone.

2. Tap your profile icon in the bottom-right corner.

3. Tap the three bars in the upper-right corner of your screen, and then tap “Settings.”

4. Tap the “Close Friends” option.

5. If you’ve never used Close Friends before, you’ll be greeted with a description of the feature. Tap the blue “Get Started” button to begin adding to your list.

6. If it’s your first time, tap the “Create List” option at the bottom.

7. Tap the “Add” button next to any of suggestions provided.

8. You can also search for a specific name by selecting the “+” button in the upper-right.

9. Tap the green “Remove” button to remove names from your “Close Friends” list.

10. Once you’ve finalized your list, tap “Done” in the upper-right corner.

How to post an Instagram Story for just your Close Friends list

1. Open the Instagram app on your phone.

2. Swipe right to access your camera

3. Upload or take a photo or video and customize it as you wish.

4. Tap the green Close Friends icon at the bottom of the screen to share it immediately.

5. You can also tap the “Send To” at the bottom of the screen and select the “Close Friends Only” option.

To revist this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

To revist this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories.

There was a time when social media was just for sharing things with your friends. Then you started looking up your old flames from high school, and you added them to keep tabs on who got engaged or had a baby. Your parents got on social media, so you had to add them too. Then your boss sent a friend request, and it would be rude to reject it, right? Eventually, social media started to look less like a party among your closest confidantes and more like a digital rolodex of everyone you'd ever met—or even, increasingly, people you'd never met at all.

In the Instagram era, this has turned posting into a guarded affair. You can share the details of your life, but only to the extent that you'd be comfortable with a coworker, or a relative, an ex-lover, or a stranger seeing it. And as a result, social media has become a lot less "friendly." Even the parlance has changed; the line between "friend" and "follower" is deliberately blurred.

Today, Instagram hopes to reintroduce some of that intimacy. The Facebook-owned app is rolling out a new feature called Close Friends, which lets users create a separate list of followers to grant special viewing permissions. When posting a Story to Instagram, users will be able to differentiate between posting for everyone and posting to their group of Close Friends.

Instagram began testing the feature over a year ago, starting with a small group of global users. The company noticed that users wanted more control over their audiences; during beta testing, it found that users liked to limit their audience more in Stories than in their main posts. The resulting feature works almost like a group message for sharing personal details—a new relationship, a frustration at work—that people might not be keen to share with their entire audience.

As the platform has grown—more than 400 million people post Stories every day, according to Instagram—users have sought to curate the size of their audiences with more provisional methods. Some rely on Instagram's messaging tool to send posts to small groups of friends. Others use secondary accounts, or "finstagrams," to reveal a different or more intimate part of their lives to a more limited audience. The new feature folds some of that flexibility into the main account, allowing users to create an infinitely adjustable list of Close Friends.

Once your Instagram app has updated to the latest version and includes the new feature, tap Profile in the side menu, then select Close Friends. The list you curate can be changed at any time, and only you can see who's on your list.

When you post a Story to your list of Close Friends, they'll see a green ring around your profile photo in the Stories tray. Stories posted to all followers will still appear with a pink ring. Instagram says this gives users "plausible deniability" about who's on their list: Someone might not see a green ring because they didn't make the cut, or simply because you never post Stories to Close Friends.

For Instagram's millions of users, Close Friends could make the platform more manageable. Or it could introduce new and complicated social dynamics, like a next-generation version of MySpace's Top 8. Instagram, for its part, just hopes it give users a new way to share—and, with any luck, a reason for users to share even more.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Do you want to share Instagram posts or stories with only a selected number of people?

FACT: Instagram is an ideal platform if you want to build a strong community. But once you’ve gained more followers, though, you may want to filter your content.

Your boss shouldn’t necessarily see the posts that your best friend sees, after all and vice versa.

That’s when you need Close Friends on Instagram.

Here’s everything you need to know about Instagram’s Close Friends list to use it even on your professional account.

What Are Instagram Close Friends

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Instagram launched the Close Friends feature in 2018. The social media platform’s aim for doing so was simple – To let you create a small group of friends to share more personal content.

The idea was to privately share your Instagram Stories more selectively so that you have the control of what everyone sees.

As Instagram’s launch announcement mentioned , “ sometimes what you want to share isn’t for everyone.

Instead of sharing one Story that everyone gets to see, you can use the Close Friends feature to be more flexible with posts.

Not everyone needs to know everything about your personal moments, and that’s what makes Close Friends a handy feature.

By sharing a Story to your closest friends, they can see it marked with a green circle around it while the rest of your friends will never know that you’ve shared it!

How to Add Close Friends on Instagram in a Step-by-Step Guide

Here’s a step-by-step guide to set up a list of Close Friends on Instagram.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

  1. First of all, go to your profile page by clicking on your picture at the main screen’s bottom right.
  2. Click on the top right side menu with the three lines and pick “Close Friends.”
  3. Add your close friends to the list by searching for their names.
  4. You can also scroll down to find Suggested users to add to your list.
  5. Tap ‘Done’ when you’re ready

Just like that, you have now set up your network of Close Friends!

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Keep in mind; you are the only one who can access this list. You don’t need to apologize to anyone for not making it to your list, as they will never know whether they are part of it or not!

Your Close Friends will be able to see your private Stories having a green ring around them. It’s the only indication for someone to know that you’ve added them to your special list of Close Friends.

Similarly, if you see an Instagram Story with a green circle around it, you know that one of your friends has added you to their Close Friends list.

How to Edit the Close Friends List

You can review your Instagram Close Friends anytime and add or remove people from the list.

You can even start from scratch and remove all the followers from your list if you want to use the feature differently.

Don’t worry; your friends won’t be notified, so it’s up to you to decide how you’ll use the Close Friends Instagram feature.

If you’re wondering how to edit your Close Friends, here’s what you need to do.

  1. Go to your profile page by clicking on your picture at the bottom right of the page.
  2. Click on the top right side menu with the three lines and pick “Close Friends.”
  3. Instead of adding new friends, click “Remove” on the ones you want to take out of your list.

As you can see, it’s a straightforward process both to set up and edit your Close Friends list.

How to Share a Story With Your Close Friends

The process is similar to sharing your usual Instagram Stories.

  1. Open the Instagram app.
  2. Click on your profile picture at the top left of the screen to create a new Story.
  3. Pick an image or video.
  4. Select the ‘Close Friends’ green icon at the bottom left of the screen to share the Story only with your close group of friends.

You’ve just shared the Story with selected friends only.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

The Benefits of Having a List of Close Friends on Instagram

You might be wondering, why should I use the Close Friends Instagram feature. Can’t I just share my Stories to everyone instead?

Of course, you can!

However, Close Friends can help you personalize your most personal content to post Stories that you wouldn’t usually share with everyone.

You can also use Close Friends to create a small network of your favorite people and treat your Stories as a messaging group. If you love sharing Stories in general, you can use this feature to share a funny post or an unexpected moment with your best friends.

It’s a secret option for you and your friends to supplement Direct Messages.

There are even benefits for businesses that want to use Close Friends.

How to Use Close Friends for Your Business

Most Instagram users set up a list of Close Friends to share Stories with their favorite people.

But you can use the feature as a business too.

Here are some best practices to follow.

Working with influencers

If your brand is frequently working with influencers, you can add your best partnerships to a list of Close Friends to share relevant content with them.

You can share updates, announcements, and everything they need to know about your upcoming campaigns.

Updating your ambassadors

Having many ambassadors or loyal fans for your brand can help you boost your Instagram engagement.

Using the Close Friends Instagram feature, you’re creating an exclusive network for your fans willing to support you.

You can use it to share exclusive content, sneak previews, campaign news to keep them in the loop with everything happening in your business.

Staying in touch with your clients

If you’re offering professional services as a trainer or consultant, you can use the Close Friends feature to add all your clients in one place.

It’s an easy way to share updates, announcements, tips, and anything relevant to them but not all your friends.


If you still haven’t used the Close Friends feature, then it’s certainly worth the try.

It’s effortless to set it up, and it can make the Instagram experience more fun and personalized.

Whether you have a personal or professional profile, you can still make the most of it and boost your most influential followers’ engagement.

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How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Psst, have you heard about Instagram’s Close Friends List? This feature allows you to send Instagram Stories to a hand-selected group of friends instead of anyone and everyone (if you have a public account). Sure, you could use your Close Friends list literally by sharing your beer pong victory or pictures of your sunburnt back 🦞 to your closest friends…

Or, you could use the close friends feature to take your Instagram marketing up a notch by curating an exclusive list of audience members. 👀 Giving select audience members a feeling of inclusion, importance, and a different look into your account.

Curious about how to use Instagram’s Close Friends list for your business strategy? Well, look no further because not only will this article explain how to create a close friends list, but how you can use it to your business’s advantage!

question and poll stickers are, we have a few blog posts that go over the different sticker features on the Instagram App. Like this one, How to Add Multiple Photos to An Instagram Story, or this crowd-pleaser, 5 Ways to Spark Endless Engagement with Instagram Stories.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Using Instagram Stories for business marketing can be a great tool to reward your top followers and most loyal customers. Not sure how to use the “Close Friends” list for your business? Well, let’s go over a few different ways below that may spark some ideas and inspiration.

Sales and exclusive offers

Your “Close Friends” list could be an exclusive VIP membership where you share discount codes, early access to new products, and personalized video messages. You could also tease the group to your entire audience, hinting about exclusive incentives and deals when they buy X amount of products.

Additionally, your paying customers could be on your “Close Friends” list for additional valuable and exclusive content if you’re selling services. This method is rightfully so, the most common use for business accounts “Close Friends” list.

Collaborate with Influencers

Another common use for this Instagram feature is creating a “Close Friends” list that only has your brand’s ambassadors and influencers for partnerships. You can add brands and individuals you already work with or would like to work with!

Then you can post opportunities for collaborations. You can share special offers and deals, give updates on new launches, and give discounts. This method is an excellent way for the people you work the most closely with to stay up-to-date, and it can make your communication and outreach much more minimal.

This option for early access can give your ambassadors and influencers a feeling of loyalty and exclusivity as they’re kept in the loop. It can also provide them with the chance to ask questions directly or to respond to your Stories. Additionally, when you post to your ‘Close Friends’ list, your Stories have a green circle around them for everyone on the list, so they’ll know there’s some insider information for them.

Show behind the scenes footage

If you want your Instagram Stories to remain more business professional, allowing people to opt into your “Close Friends” list can be a great compromise! That way you’re not overly spamming your followers; however, those who want to know all the details, deals, and behind-the-scenes info can have easy access to it.

Whether it’s giving a first look at new inventory, showcasing some of your sparkly personality, or previewing a new shop location. Behind the scenes, footage can be the most fun and playful way to use the “Close Friends” list and is a great way to keep parts of your business private while still having an air of exclusivity.

This option allows you to show some vulnerability in a real way. You could share a thank you video, personal story, or give live updates. When you’re using the “Close Friends” list for behind-the-scenes footage, the world is truly your oyster. 🦪

The “Close Friends” feature can allow you to share a survey or questionnaire with your closest audience without getting swarmed with replies if you’d posted it to your regular Stories. That way, the feedback you’re getting is from trusted individuals and will remain mostly helpful.

Another option is to use the “Close Friends” feature to invite accounts to participate in an Instagram challenge hosted by you. This secretive call to action can be exclusive enough to catch the people’s attention on that list and help you pull off a successful Instagram challenge!

Regardless of how you use the Close Friends list, this feature can be a great addition to your social media marketing strategy. With some planning and scheming, you can give your top followers and audience members a feeling of importance and inclusion. And what better way to thank and appreciate your followers than making them feel special and included?

M any Instagram users may not be aware of it, but the popular social media platform offers us the option to share our Stories with a select group of followers.

In the event you are not willing to make your story visible to all your followers, Instagram provides you with the Close Friends feature, through which you can put together a list of those who will be allowed to view your Stories.

How to share your Instagram stories only with close friends

To share an Instagram Story to just a select group of friends, you first need to create a Close Friends list, to which you can add the followers who will be allowed to see a story which you are not willing to make public.

You can put together your Close Friends list on Instagram by following the steps below.

1. Open the Instagram app on your Android or iPhone.

2. Tap on your profile icon that is located in the bottom-right corner.

3. Tap on the three bars in your screen’s upper-right corner and then choose the “Settings” option.

4. Tap on “Close Friends”.

5. Choose the “Get Started” option and then tap on “Create List”.

6. Choose the “Add” option and search for the friends you want to add to the list by selecting the “+” button in the upper-right corner of the screen.

7. You can remove names from your list by tapping the “Remove” button.

8. Once you have put your list together, choose the “Done” option in the upper-right corner.

How to make an Instagram Story visible to just your Close Friends list

Once you have created your Close Friends list, you can try to post a Story that is only visible to that select group of people.

To do so follow the simple steps below:

1. Open the Instagram app on your Android or iPhone.

2. Upload the photo or video you want to share.

3. Choose the Close Friends option to share the content.

4. Alternatively, select the “Send To” option and tap “Close Friends Only”.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Update: After six months of tests, Instagram is letting its Brazilian users know that the company is backpedaling from Selected People and bringing back the Close Friends option. Although Instagram didn’t specify the reason, tests were very buggy and users couldn’t properly change different users depending on the Story posted. That said, it’s unlikely that Instagram will release this feature to more countries in the near future.

Instagram today announced a new test for its Stories function. Starting today, Close Friends will be called Selected People and will let users select exactly who can see some of their Stories for 24 hours.

This feature will start as an exclusive test in Brazil, and it’s unclear when it will launch for all users or open its tests for more countries.

It’s important to note that Selected Stories is just a variation of Close Friends, and it’s different from the feature reverse engineer Alessandro Paluzzi discovered that’s called “Exclusive Stories.” This one will be for content creators to charge for its content, something similar to what Twitter has been doing with its Super Follows function.

Instagram Stories has become the place to express yourself and share your daily moments. And, sometimes, people don’t want to share the same content with everybody. The ability to select different groups of people to share Stories was already something our community was asking for a while.

With the Selected People test, it will work similar to the Close Friends list, except you can uncheck some users of your Close Friends list to see a post. Here’s how it’s going to work:

  • When creating a Story, tap to open the Share button
  • Choose “Selected People” to see all profiles that can see your Story
  • Change who can see your Story by selecting or unchecking profiles
  • Your list will keep unchanged until it’s edited again

Before, with the ‘Close Friends’ feature, people could only share Stories with the same list of friends without being able to edit it. With this test, you’ll be able to add, remove, or keep people on your list with different Stories.

What do you think of this function? Are you excited to try “Selected People?” Tell us in the comment section below.

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How to use the close friends feature on instagram

No matter how comfortable you are sharing your life with your followers, you might not want your boss to see the bar crawl you took the night before your "sick day." Instead, you probably reserve that content for your Instagram Close Friends, the core group of people who you want to give access to your shower thoughts on top of your more curated brunch posts. But who makes the cut to see your hungover Sunday selfies? What’s appropriate for Close Friends versus your main story versus a finsta? And how do you even use Close Friends?

For Emily, 26, Instagram’s Close Friends feature is a way to stay connected without making a public statement — a particularly useful tool in a climate in which it can feel inappropriate to post casually. "I’m not going to post a random selfie while so many people are using their platforms to organize around much more important issues," Emily tells Bustle. "I like to use my public posts for information sharing and impersonal things."

It’s never a bad time to more closely select who sees what you’re putting out online. If you don’t want your family or co-workers to see your dance moves on Instagram Reels, you can keep that content just for your inner circle — or if you want to make sure your internet crushes see your best selfies, you’ll want to make sure they’re on the list.

How To Add People To Your Instagram Close Friends

You can access your Close Friends list via Instagram’s settings menu — Close Friends has its own tab — or via sharing settings when you’re ready to share a story. In Settings, go to “Account,” then to “Close Friends. There, you’ll see the option to add people to your Close Friends, including a list of suggested accounts. Though an Instagram spokesperson tells Bustle that the app doesn’t curate this list, you may notice that the people who you often see at the front of your stories tray may also appear early in the list of suggested friends to choose from. You can scroll or search through your entire following list to handpick your official inner circle.

If you’ve ever found yourself on the Close Friends list of someone who you’re not that close with, there’s a chance they accidentally added you because your name was listed among their actual close friends. Or, they want you to see their personal content! Someone who adds you to their Close Friends isn’t automatically added to your private list, so you don’t have to worry about your ex seeing your wedding announcement even though they want you to see theirs. In some cases, being added to a random Close Friends list can actually spark a closer friendship. Willa Bennett, head of social media for GQ, says she loves being added to the Close Friends lists of people she doesn’t know well. "I feel honored! And usually add them to mine," she tells Bustle. (Bennett has previously been employed by Bustle Digital Group.)

According to an Instagram spokesperson, the average number of close friends that people add is 20, but you’re free to add as many, or as few people as you want. Emily has 930 followers total, and has selected 60 for her Close Friends list. Bennett has 48 people on her Close Friends out of her more than 18,000 followers.

How To Post To Close Friends On Instagram

According to Bennett, a Close Friends audience is totally different from those who watch your public story. "It’s not about likes or engagements but [it’s] focused around cultivating a smaller niche, loyal online community," she tells Bustle. Emily adds that she finds people are more likely to respond to Close Friends stories precisely because it feels more intentional. It almost makes the vastness of Instagram feel intimate.

But just because you’ve created a Close Friends list doesn’t mean you should ignore the rest of your followers. When you’re ready to share a post, you’ll have the option to share it with your Close Friends or your general story, which can be seen by your entire following. You can toggle between the two as you please. If you’ve selected Close Friends, your story will appear in your friends’ story tray with a green ring around it. If you’ve selected your story, the ring will be sunset-colored.

Emily says she posts on Close Friends more frequently than to her main story. "My close friends content is usually pretty inane: reposts of art I like, selfies, sharing music I’m listening to, making dumb comments on my day, and asking questions or starting polls where I’m specifically only interested in my friends’ responses," she tells Bustle.

How To Edit Your Close Friends On Instagram

The people who you have on your Close Friends list might not always been the people you want to share all of your personal content with. And as with any digital hygiene practice, it’s worth going through your list every so often, to make sure everyone you want seeing your classified content is on there.

"I’ve got a few former hook-ups and crushes on my Close Friends that I want to see my selfies, LMAO. I don’t stress too much about the ‘implications’ of adding someone to my list," Emily tells Bustle.

Will Someone Know If I Add Them To Close Friends On Instagram?

When you add someone to your Close Friends list, they won’t get a notification, but if you share a story, they’ll see it at the front of their stories tray with a green ring around it and that will tip them off. If you see a green ring versus a sunset-colored ring around a post, that indicates you’re on the user’s Close Friends list.

Will Someone Know If I Take Them Off Close Friends On Instagram?

Fortunately, you can edit your Close Friends list at any time. Adding or removing people doesn’t send any notifications — per Instagram, that’s for privacy reasons — so no feelings will be hurt if you decide that actually, you’re not that close with your cubicle-mate anymore.

If you don’t want someone to see any of your stories, you can privately add them to you Hide story from list. To access this list, tap Settings, Privacy, Story and then “Hide story from.” You can scroll through your followers or manually type in accounts that you want to be blocked from your stories. Once you tap “done,” your stories won’t show up in their tray anymore, and you’ll have to remove them from you list to give them access again. The user won’t be able to tell you’ve restricted them from their own account. But of course, they can always ask a mutual if you’ve been posting stories lately.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Stories is one of Instagram’s most popular features with over 500 million people using Instagram stories daily (reported in 2021). Stories have been a crucial feature for businesses to sell and build relationships with their followers. The less-curated element of Instagram Stories allows businesses to humanize their brand.

The Close Friends feature can be beneficial for both personal and business accounts. Personal accounts can utilize the Close Friends feature to share private stories with a specific selection of followers. For example, sharing content that is more private or for friends vs. family.

In this article, we will be strategizing how the Close Friends feature is beneficial for Small Business Owners, Creators, and Entrepreneurs.

The What

Instagram ‘Close Friends’ is a feature that allows you to create a collection of followers who are given access to private Stories. Stories posted using the ‘Close Friends’ feature will only be visible to those accounts you’ve added to your Close Friends list.

Close Friends was released by Instagram in November 2018 and was quoted “With Close Friends, you have the flexibility to share more personal moments with a smaller group that you choose.”

See the FAQ section at the bottom for more details

The HOW (Creating, Editing, Posting)

Creating your list:
  • Go to an account’s page and select the “Following” button. Select the Star that says “Add to Close Friends List”

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Editing your list (2 Options):
  • Option 1: Go to your Profile > Settings > Close Friends

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

  • Option 2: When posting a story, select the Settings gear at the top right > Story > Viewing > Close Friends

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Posting to Close Friends:
  • Create your story and tap ‘Send To’ > Close Friends Only > Share > Done

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram


Using Close Friends for your business can be a true game-changer. With that being said, you will need to strategize before randomly adding everyone to this list. Here are some tips:

  • Create a poll in your stories. Post a story explaining how you will be utilizing the Close Friends feature and asking if they want to be added. You will then view the poll results and manually add those people to your list.
  • Review your DMs. Check for accounts to DM you frequently or have built a connection with you.
  • Check out your prioritized accounts. The first few stories shown on the top bar of your feed are accounts you’ve interacted the most with.


  • The circle around your story will be changed to bright green when you post a story to Close Friends only. This attracts more attention to your Stories can lead to more story views

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

  • Using the Threads app, you can create a Status that is visible to Close Friends. This creates prime real estate on your profile to promote sales or events (Only Close Friends who have downloaded Instagram’s ‘Threads’ messaging app will be able to view your status)

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Building Trust:
  • Create inclusiveness by posting a story making your Close Friends feel special and telling them how being on this list will benefit them. Ex: “If you’re watching this Story, that means you’ve been added to my Close Friends list! Here you will have first access to sales & exclusive discounts!”
  • Offer a series of mini-trainings for Close Friends only. Share this event with the public enticing them to join the list. Post polls regularly for more followers to be added to the list.
Converting Sales:
  • Warm leads will be added to your Close Friends list which means they need more nurturing and are more likely to purchase from you
  • You will now have a list of warm leads that you can visit later and reach out to those people individually via DM for special discounts and promos


  • Can people see a list of my Close Friends?No. The list is only available to you (not even the people on it will have access, aside from seeing the green circle around your story)
  • Are they notified when I add them to my list?No. They will never be notified if you add or remove them from this list.
  • Can anyone request to be on my Close Friend’s list?No. There is no way for someone to send a request unless they reach out to you directly to ask.
  • Is there a limit to how many Close Friends I can have?No. You can add an unlimited amount of accounts to your list.
  • Do I have to be following someone to add them to my list?Yes. You must be following the account you want to add to your Close Friends.
  • Can I use this privacy for any other features besides stories?No. You currently can’t use the Close Friends privacy for any feature besides Stories
  • Will stories visible to Close Friends be visible longer?No. Stories posted with this feature will be available for the same amount of time- 24 hours
  • Can I make multiple “Close Friends” lists?No. As of now, there is only one master list.

UPDATE: Instagram is rumored to be creating “Fan Club Subscriptions” by adding the ability to start a Live video for your subscribers (as of Oct. 2021)

How will you be using the Close Friends feature? Let me know in the comments!

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Instagram Close friends is a feature that enables you to create a subset of your followers to share stories privately with them.

When you select this feature while uploading your stories, only people inside your Close friends can view them.

In this article, we’ll talk about everything you need to know about Instagram Close friends. Let’s dive in.

Table of Contents

How To Know If Someone Removed You From Close Friends On Instagram?

Instagram doesn’t notify anyone when users removes someone from their Close friends’ list.

Since no notification is given, there is no way for you to know if someone removed you from close friends on Instagram. The only way would be observing their stories and find the green ring around them.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Usually, if you’re added to Close friends, you will be able to see a green ring appear on the Instagram stories that posted for Close friends only.

If the green ring is no longer visible to you, this might mean you have been removed from the Close friends’ list.

However, this checking method only works when you have seen the green ring around their stories before.

Close Friends On Instagram Common Questions

How Does Instagram Determine Close Friends?

Instagram doesn’t add or remove anyone from your Close friends’ list. The step of adding or removing close friends is completely up to the users.

Can You Remove Yourself From The Close Friends List Of Someone Else?

No, you can’t remove your Instagram profile from the someone else Close friends’ list. What you can do is either personally asking them to remove you, or go to their Instagram profile and mute their stories, or just block them.

How To Create A Close Friends List On Instagram?

Let’s talk about how you can add your favorite people on Instagram to your Close friends’ list.

  1. Open Instagram app
  2. Go to your Instagram profile
  3. Tap on the hamburger icon (three horizontal lines) at the top right
  4. Select Close friends
  5. Scroll through your followers’ list and tap on “Add” to add them to your Close friends

How To Remove Close Friends On Instagram?

Here is how you can remove people from your Instagram close friends’ list:

  • Open the app
  • Navigate to your Instagram profile
  • Tap on the hamburger icon at the top-right corner
  • Select Close friends
  • Tap on the “Remove” button in front of the accounts you want to remove from the Close friends

Posting An Instagram Story For Close Friends

Instagram allows you to post stories exclusively to a range of selected profiles. Hence, if there are some private moment that you want to share only to families or a certain group of friends, you can add them to your Close friends.

To post an Instagram story only for Close friends:

  1. Open the Instagram app
  2. Tap on the story camera icon at the top-left
  3. Create your story
  4. Tap on the Close friends icon at the bottom

Whenever you share a story exclusively to your Close friends on Instagram, a green circle will surround your posted story. In this case, a ny profiles that are not part of your Close friends won’t be able to see the story.

For stories that you shared publicly, a red circle will surround the story and anyone can view it, regardless whether they’re in Close friends or not.

How To Know If Someone Adds You To Their Close Friends’ List On Instagram?

When someone adds you to their Close friends, their stories will have a green ring around them. However, you will have to wait for them to share a story with Close friends to know whether you are part of the list.

As mentioned earlier, Instagram does not notify anyone when there is someone adds or removes you from their Close friends. Thus, there is no ways to know if you are part of the Close friends.

Of course, one possible way to know is to ask them directly, only if you are willing to go that route.

Removed From Close Friends Or Regular Friends On Instagram

How To Know If Someone Removed You From Friends On Instagram?

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Since no notification or alert is given if someone removed you, you could only figure out the removal with some manual ways. There are two ways of finding out whether someone has unfollowed you or removed you from their friend list on Instagram.

The first way is to go to the that profile and look through the list of people they follow. It can take time, so you might don’t want to do this, especially if the person has hundreds of followers.

The second way to know that is by using an app. There are quite a few mobile apps that can provide that information to you.

How To Know Whether Someone Has Blocked You On Instagram Or Not?

Sometimes, people will go to the extent of blocking you. If you suspecting someone might have blocked you and want to confirm, there are few ways to clarify it.

Firstly, you can just type in their account name and do an Instagram search from your account.

Regardless whether the searched profile are private or public, chances that you might have been blocked is there if you can’t find anything upon searching.

To confirm if the speculation is correct and it is not that the user have deactivated their account, you can further check it through here:

Just type in the profile username in the URL. If the username appears wherein you find nothing through your own Instagram, it’s confirm that the user you’re searching for have blocked you, maybe they liked a post accidentally and decided to block you to avoid the embarrassment.

Final Thoughts

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

So, how to know if someone removed you from Close friends on Instagram?

Even though Instagram doesn’t notify or give any alert when someone removes you from the Close friends, that doesn’t mean you couldn’t find out about it.

Instagram will shows a green ring around the posted stories of a person that has added you as a close friend.

If you can no longer see the green ring around their story, this might means you have been removed from the Close friend.

However, there is also a possibility that they just haven’t shared anything with their Close friends, which may be the reason why you are not seeing the green circle.

In conclusion, you can’t always be sure but hopefully this article has helped you in guessing.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

New This Week: How to Use the Instagram Close Friends Feature for Business

Last updated on: 2018

In the past, Instagram Stories have always had to be seen by all followers (unless they’re part of a direct message). Now, this is no longer the case due to a new update on Instagram!

Instagram recently announced a new feature called “Close Friends” that allows you to send private stories with a select group of people.

Now you can make a close friends list on Stories to share with just the people that you’ve added. This new feature gives you the opportunity to share more personal moments with a smaller group that can choose.

How do I add friends to my “Close Friends” list?

1. Go to your Profile page. You can get here by tapping the bottom right-hand corner of your screen.

2. Tap the three lines icon in the top right corner of your screen.

3. Tap “Close Friends”. Tap “Add” next to the usernames of people that you would like to add to your list, or “Search” to search for a specific friend.

4. Once you’re finished adding users, tap “Done”. Keep in mind that you can update this list at any time, and the users will not be notified when they are added or removed.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How do I share an Instagram Story only to my “Close Friends” list?

Once you’re ready to starting sharing Stories, here’s how to share it with your Close Friends only.

1. Tap the green circle with a white star inside. This will take you to your “Close Friends” list.

2. Select which Close Friends to include. Instagram will automatically give you suggestions based on the accounts that you interact with the most.

3. Post your Story! Whenever you want to post a story with Close Friends, just tap the green circle. Instead of the usual purple color, Close Friends will now see a green ring around your story.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

How can I use the “Close Friends” feature for my business?

As the “Close Friends” feature just rolled out a few days, we are excited to see how businesses will be using it!

It’s easy to imagine brands using the feature to create VIP lists, fan clubs or paid subscribers where users can opt in to receive additional posts and exclusive content. For example, if your beauty brand has a new product launch coming out or wants to host a sale for VIP members, the new Close Friends feature could be a great way to spread the word to a specific group of people.

If you’re a brand that works with influencers for specific Instagram campaigns, you can create a Close Friends list for them to easily share posts that would interest or involve them.

Instagram has yet to announce any special tools to help publishers manager these lists, but it’s likely that more updates will be implemented to help businesses utilize the feature more strategically as well.

Want to learn more about recent updates in digital marketing platforms? Check out our New This Week series.


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How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Do you have that one friend who, for the life of them, can’t seem to keep in touch in a constant way? Text messages left unread and not replied to for days, with the only form of repair a panicked, “omg SO sorry!! I just saw this. ” a week later. It’s me. I’m the friend.

While I try to compensate in other ways, like giving unsolicited relationship advice, there’s a burning, nagging feeling that persists in my head as I try to balance the constant, overwhelming expectation of being in contact with my loved ones on endless loop. The idea of a sort of private, sort of public “send all” option on my life updates sounds like an amazing solution. It’s a clear way to show someone, “hey, I like and care about you enough to show you what’s going on in my life,” without requiring the herculean effort of sending someone a text and getting the small talk momentum going.

Enter the “Close Friends” option on Instagram. No, before that actually, we need to go to its undeniable predecessor, finsta. If you didn’t remember parents trying to figure out what these secret, evil Instagram accounts were a few years back, a finsta is simply a “fake instagram” that exists as the antithesis of one’s main account.

Finstas are almost always private caverns for shitposting, be it a constant stream of curated memes and ugly selfies or more intimate, usually random photos with long captions detailing the agonizing pain of someone’s mental health struggles (mostly a chaotic mix of both). It’s a publicly private, perfectly paradoxical daily journal that many young people use to keep their closest friends in the know of what they’re up to.

I was a serial finsta user from my junior year of high school to my sophomore year of college, posting hundreds of pictures detailing so many mundane or incredibly important moments on one account. After realizing finstas had replaced much healthier methods of recalling events like journaling and dedicating more effort to therapy — not to mention the awkward tension of keeping people I didn’t talk to any longer on the account — I removed all of my followers and ceased posting, keeping the artifact for my own historiological purposes.

But now that little dopamine-obsessed gremlin inside my brain who once compelled me to finsta far too hard has reared its head once more with this Instagram feature. They essentially found a way to perfect the concept of finsta on just one account, by giving the user the option to post a viewable story available to only a select few.

It’s sometimes an honor and sometimes a shock to see the green ring around someone’s profile and realize they’ve deemed you worthy of whatever it is they post. As a poster, it’s incredibly helpful for keeping tabs because you are given a live list of which friends viewed and which didn’t. It feels like a perfect method to manage this ideation of mass communication with just a touch of intimacy. There’s just one thing: there’s no easy way for the “chosen ones” to opt out.

So if you’re on someone’s list and you don’t want to be, you’re left with two options. You could mute every single story this person, who you may care about, posts — they’ll just notice you’re not showing up in the total amount of viewers for the list — or, you have another option. You could APPROACH THEM, and SHARE you don’t want to be considered someone who should be seeing all of their private thoughts and content and that you’d rather be removed. If it’s a real-life “close friend,” that’s one thing, but someone you don’t really know well? You’re trapped for eternity.

Speaking as a former Instagram captor of my loved ones, one of the strangest parts of using this tool is being forced to confront that the “Close Friends” list is a living, shapeshifting organism that molds to reflect who comes in and out of your life. Ending a relationship in a “Close Friends” world means there is an entirely different set of signals to read on social media after the fact.

“Why am I still on their close friends? Why do they want me to see this?” you might wonder. Or, “Why did they remove me from their close friends? What don’t they want me to see?”

Post-breakup, it’s an awfully convenient way to post something — which may or may not contain some vague messaging or subposting — and have a guarantee that it will interrupt their day and capture their attention, if not for just a few seconds. If they’re bold enough to ask to be removed, you’ll know that’s a clear indicator of where things are gonna go.

The gleeful gray area allows for constant, persistent reminders of someone who you might not want to be hearing from very often. So now, we chronic oversharers are left with these messy vehicles for digitally spilling our guts and absolutely no way to free the passengers.

After getting old enough to realize I actually don’t love the idea of my intimate business on the internet in any capacity, I took the only suitable — albeit drastic — option that you may have to consider at some point yourself. Just stop posting a story for close friends.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

There are times when you want to share your Instagram Stories with only a few people or friends. So, Instagram figured why not create a Close Friends list for exactly this purpose?

Instagram’s Close Friends list lets you choose your IG clique who will be the only ones to see private IG Stories you want to share with them. When you post a story to your list, only the chosen followers will see the content. This allows you to get a bit picky about who sees what on your account.

Having a Close Friends list is like having a super private Instagram account attached to your actual account – and you can use it to spill tea just the way you like. What’s not to like?

Why Use An Instagram Close Friends List?

Instagram Stories are extremely popular with 500 million people using them every day on the social media platform. Users love them as a tool for branding, engagement, and sharing fun snippets of their lives.

Sometimes, though, you might not want to share your Stories with all your followers. A Close Friends List makes it possible for you to:

  • target specific people with your content
  • decide who gets to see what content
  • and curate particular experiences for an exclusive group of followers

This makes it a fantastic way to foster more private relationships, share exclusive content, and utilize Instagram Stories in a more targeted way.

How To Set Up An Instagram Close Friends List

Before we dive into how you can use this feature to your advantage, here’s how to create your first Instagram Close Friends list.

  1. Click on the burger icon (three stacked horizontal lines) on the top right corner of your profile page.
  2. Click on ‘Close Friends’ to access a list of followers’ names.
  3. Select the ‘Add’ button next to the handles or names of the accounts you want to add to your list. Alternatively, you can search for the accounts in the search bar and add them. Don’t fret if you change your mind about the people you chose later on. You can simply remove them from the list and it won’t cause you any drama because Instagram won’t let them know that you’ve removed them from your list.
  4. With all the right people added, click ‘Done’ and you have your first list.

How To Share Content To Your Close Friends List

Now that you’ve set up your list, it’s time to share some content with your Close Friends. You can only share Instagram Stories to your list and this is how you do it:

  1. Open your app and click on the (+) sign at the top of your screen. This will lead you to create a new post.
  2. Create an Instagram Story as you would normally, and add stickers, GIFs, filters and all that to match your aesthetic.
  3. To share, you’ll see a white star in a green circle at the bottom of your screen. Tap on it to share the Story you’ve created on your Instagram Close Friends List. And you’re done!

Close Friends posts show up on your feed and your friends’ feed with a green circle, instead of the pink ring that indicates a new public Instagram Story.

The Story you post to your Instagram Close Friends list is pretty much like any other story. It will only stick around for 24 hours. You can also add them to your highlights, but only people on the list will see these Stories on your profile.

4 Best Ways To Use Your Close Friends List For Your Business

Share Exclusive Content

Does your business or brand offer premium or VIP memberships, or exclusive status for long-time or constant supporters? If yes, does it not make sense to extend these privileges to social media content too?

With Instagram Close Friends lists, you can share exclusive content to a select group of your followers or customers. Such content can include premium discount codes or coupons, special product access, early product announcements, private launches, collaboration offers, personalized content, and more.

Work With Influencers

Use your list to collaborate with influencers! Influencer marketing has grown substantially in recent years. And today, influencers wield a lot of power over Instagram users’ purchasing decisions and product preferences. Brands collaborate with influencers to boost brand recognition and awareness, promote products, engage new audiences, and increase sales and conversions.

Add all the influencers you’re currently collaborating with to your Instagram Close Friends list. Via the list, you can give them special product offers and discounts, product updates, and detailed information they can use for your brand promotion. Essentially, you can use this as a collaborative space to touch base with your influencer partners.

Celebrate Your Fan Followers

Nothing keeps a brand going and growing on Instagram like a loyal follower. When your followers like, comment, and share your posts, and they share their own content displaying your products, they may deserve a little reward.

You can use your Instagram Close Friends list to give rewards to your top followers. You can also use the list to share thoughtful messages or videos of gratitude.

Build Important Relationships

Connections, networks, relationships. Whatever you want to call them, that’s what social media is all about and you never want to neglect them. An Instagram Close Friends list grants you intimacy and privacy. It makes the people you add to the list feel important.

For your business or brand, you can add important partners or business connections and use that space to maintain that relationship. Share business updates, behind-the-scenes content, and other private content that’s a little more vulnerable than what you share with a general audience.

This can be a wonderful opportunity to create community and personal connections with your partners. Doing so can only bolster your business relationships going forward.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Bye, Friend!

Looking for social media content ideas to drive your content towards a more targeted or specific audience? An Instagram Close Friends list might just be your answer. Start creating exclusive content today!

While the Close Friends feature on Instagram may not be brand new, it may be new to you. You can choose the friends you want on this exclusive list and then share your story just with them instead of everyone. This is a handy way to share a story with your closest pals or immediate family.

Here, we’ll show you how to set up your Close Friends list, edit it, and share your Instagram stories with those besties on it.

Close Friends on Instagram

Create a Close Friends list

To start adding people to your Close Friends list, open Instagram and follow these steps.

1) Go to your Instagram profile using the tab at the bottom.

2) Tap the Menu icon on the top right.

3) Select Close Friends.

4) When you’re new to creating the list, you’ll see a welcome type of screen. Tap Get Started.

5) You’ll see a list of people as well as a Search box at the top if you want to find someone in particular. Tap Add next to each person you want to add to the list.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

This currently isn’t a way to create or manage your Close Friends on the Instagram website.

Edit your Close Friends

You can add and remove people from your Close Friends list anytime. Use the steps above to select Close Friends from the Menu.

  • Add: Tap the plus sign on the top right to add someone to the list.
  • Remove: Tap the Remove button next to your friend to take them off the list.
  • Remove everyone: If for some reason you want to take everybody off the list, tap Remove All.

When you add or remove people from your Close Friends, they will not receive a notification.

Share your story with Close Friends

When you create a story that you want to share only with your Close Friends, it’s super easy. Capture the story as you normally would, then tap Close Friends on the bottom left. That’s it!

After you share your story with your friends on that list, you can see this too. Open the story and you’ll see a star in green on the top right. Tap it and a message will display letting you know you’ve shared it with Close Friends. You also have an option to Edit Your Close Friends List right from that pop-up.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

About Close Friends on Instagram

Here are a few things to note about your Close Friends list on Instagram.

  • When you add or remove people from your Close Friends, they will not receive a notification.
  • Stories you share with Close Friends still disappear after 24 hours like any other story.

…people on your close friends list will know they’re on it, but they can’t see who else is on your list. Only you can see your close friends list, and no one can request to be added. If someone has added you to their list, you’ll see a green badge when you’re viewing their stories and a green ring around their profile photo.

Will you be adding some Close Friends on Instagram?

When you have a lot of followers on Instagram and have a story that you only want a few people to see, using your Close Friends list is the perfect way to do it. So, are you going to create a Close Friends list? Let us know your thoughts!

If you try it out and like it, take a look at the messaging app for Close Friends on Instagram called Threads.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Have you ever wanted to share some of your Instagram stories with just with your close friends and family members, and not everyone that follows you? In this article we will explain to you how to use close friends feature on Instagram.

What is the “Close Friends” feature on Instagram?

Instagram has introduced a feature called "close friends" in 2018. It lets users share their personal moments with an inner circle of people. "Close friends" is limited to Stories and is accessible once a user opens their Stories camera and takes a photo or video. A green circle with a white star appears, and tapping on it brings up a close friends list where the user can add friends to their inner circle.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram© Instagram

Once a close friends list has been compiled, users can share with people on the list exclusively by tapping on the green circle whenever they take a Stories photo or video. Friends on the list will see the Story in the tray at the top of the feed with a green ring around it to tell them that the Story has not been shared more widely. As just with usual Instagram Stories, your story will be visible for only 24 hours and then disappears. Don’t worry, friends are not notified when they are added or removed from the Close Friends list, to avoid awkward social moments.

The "Close Friends" feature is likely a response to the growing phenomenon of "Finstagrams," which are secondary accounts that some users open and only allow their closest friends to follow.

How to create a Close Friends list?

To create your Close Friends list on Instagram, follow the steps below:

1.Go to your Profile page by tapping the profile icon in the lower right corner of your screen.

2. Tap on the menu icon in the top right corner and select Close Friends tab.

3. Select people you’d like to add to your Close Friends list by tapping on Add. You can use the Search console to find your close friend.

4. When you have finished, select Done.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram© Instagram

Congratulations! Now you have your Close Friends list. Now we will explain to you how to share your stories just with them.

How to share an Instagram Story with Close Friends?

1. Tap on the + icon in the upper left corner of your screen as you always do to create a story.

2. Take a photo, video or upload one from your phone as you usually do. 3. Finally, when you are ready to share, tap on the Close Friends green icon with a star in the lower left corner and it’s done!

How to use the close friends feature on instagram© Instagram

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Through this feature of Instagram, you will be able to post content for a limited audience or as the name states – close friends.

  • Trending Desk
  • Last Updated: August 11, 2021, 15:34 IST

The social media platform Instagram provides you with a privacy option to keep your account private or public. While celebrities and social media influencers prefer to keep their profiles public, several users choose to restrict people from viewing their handles. However, all Instagram users with public profiles can also make their posts visible to a specific set of audiences. Instagram app on your Android phone or Apple iPhone has an option of ‘Close Friends’ in the Instagram Stories settings. Through this feature, you will be able to post content for a limited audience or as the name states, close friends.

How to create a Close Friends Story on Instagram? Here is a step-by-step guide for the same:

Step 1: Open your Instagram account.

Step 2: Navigate to your profile.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

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How to use the close friends feature on instagram

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Step 3: You will see three black lines in the upper right corner, click on them.

Step 4: Once you tap on it, your settings will open.

Step 5: Of the various options present, select “Close Friends.” This will allow you to create a list of your close friends.

Step 6: A list of all your followers will appear. In front of each name, a rectangular blue box reading – ‘Add’ will be seen.

Step 7: Now, you can tap on the blue buttons placed in front of the profile you want to add to your close friends list.

Step 8: You can also search their usernames and select people you want to add to your list.

Step 9: Once the list is ready, you can click on the button ‘Create List’ present at the bottom of your screen and your close friend list is created.

How to make a post on ‘Close Friends’?

Step 1: Create a story you want to share with your close friends.

Step 2: At the bottom of your screen, two options reading – ‘your story’ and ‘close friend’ story –will appear. Tap on the green star icon present with ‘close friend’ and the story will be shared.

Step 3: Your story posted with ‘close friends’ will be visible to only accounts you have added to the list.

You can edit your close friends list whenever you want. The step would be the same, navigate to your profile, select the three lines, and click on “Close Friends.”

Instagram allows you to share your stories with a particular set of friends through the ‘Close Friends List’ feature. Follow this step by step guide to know about the feature.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Stories have quickly become a popular feature on Instagram for sharing content. But if you have a lot of followers ranging from coworkers and past college colleagues to current friends and relatives, it sometimes becomes difficult to share stories with all of them. In this case, Instagram’s Close Friends feature can be a good solution.

Instagram’s ‘Close Friends’ is a customizable list of a particular set of people you want to share your stories with. But this feature can only be used for sharing stories, and not features like posts.

How to Use Close Friends on Instagram: Steps

Step 1: Log in to your Instagram account through your iOS or Android device.

Step 2: Go to your profile by tapping the profile icon in the bottom-right corner of the screen.

Step 3: Click on the three horizontal lines in the top-right corner of the screen.

Step 4: Tap Close Friends.

Step 5: Tap ‘Add’ next to the people who you want to add to your close friends list. You can also tap ‘Search’ to search for a friend.

Step 6: Click on ‘Done’ when you’ve finished adding people to your list.


1. You can update your close friends list by adding and removing people at any time. People won’t be notified when you add or remove them from your list.

2. People in your ‘Close Friends List’ won’t be able to see who else is on your list.

3. People cannot request you to add them to your list also.

4. Stories with close friends will disappear after 24 hours, the same as a normal story.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Instagram stories are a great way to stay connected with everyone’s day-to-day lives, but the creation of the “close friends list” has given us the opportunity to use this feature for evil. If you’ve ever wondered how to create absolute chaos within your social media accounts, here’s how to turn your Instagram close friends list into the destructive, toxic hellscape of your dreams.

Post something that’s only meant for one person.

One of the most devious and popular ways to weaponize your close friends story is to post something that’s only meant for one person to see. This could be a classic thirst trap, your plans for the weekend, or even an emotional breakdown that you specifically want that person to reach out to you. Remember that everyone else will still see this, so don’t forget to post a follow-up like “oops 🙂 that was supposed to be a DM!” Psychotic!!

Talk shit about someone who’s not on the list.

Another great way to wreak havoc is to post a video of you talking major shit about someone who’s not on the list. Everyone loves to hear about interpersonal drama, which is why this will certainly be a hit for your close friends audience, while still being an extremely toxic way to shit talk someone. That bitch Hannah had it coming!

Kick someone off the list, then make a post about it as a warning to the others.

One of the most savage ways to weaponize your close friends list is to first remove someone off of said list, then immediately let everyone else on the list know why you did this. There are lots of reasons why you might remove someone from your close friends list; maybe you just grew apart, or maybe the person in question wore the same sweater as you the very next day after you did. Either way, you should let your other close friends know. This way, you’ll keep the rest of your list on their toes, always slightly stressed when they see that green circle around your story, but too scared and intrigued not to click. Yes, close friendship!!

Constantly reference your close friends’ posts on main.

If things aren’t fucked up enough on the inside, try to make the outside jealous. By coyly referencing what they’re missing (is it a thirst trap? A murder confession?), they’ll be fucking chomping at the bit to join this absolutely toxic cabal of so-called “friends”. If that isn’t goals, what is.

So if you’re looking for some creative ways to weaponize your close friends list, try any one of the tips listed above. You’ll have everyone guessing what’s wrong with you in no time!

Remember the times when you wanted to upload stories of a crazy night out but couldn’t as you told your colleagues that you’ll be busy with work and won’t join them, or when you didn’t share a meme or post on your story as a lot of your followers would dislike it.

Instagram understood this problem faced by its users. Which is why in 2018 they came up with the ‘close friends’ feature.

With the close friend’s feature user could choose between posting something on their main story or to their close friend’s story. The close friends story as the name suggest allows users to select a list of their followers, the close friends story can only be seen by these selected number of followers.

The close friends feature solved a big problem for users that retained from posting stories they don’t want certain followers to see and soon this feature was a big hit amongst users.

Instagram is now reportedly making new and interesting changes to its close friend’s feature.

Alessandro Paluzzi suggest that the company will change the name of its close friends feature to ‘selected followers’. The selected followers will enable users to select a different audience for each of their stories, this feature will give them an option for each story they post, making the user experience a whole lot better.

The selected followers feature is a whole lot better than the close friends feature as with the selected followers feature users can easily select which story cannot be viewed by which follower unlike the close friend’s feature.

The selected followers feature will be a great help for people that don’t have different accounts for professional and private reasons, as they can easily select which of their followers can view which particular story.

The first reports regarding this feature came back in April and now the news is much more confirmed, it is expected that Instagram will soon announce the release of this feature.

Apart from this an Instagram user on Twitter made a very interesting comment. The user believes that this new selected followers feature can be used by famous celebrities as a subscription model making their stories only visible to people that pay for them thus increasing monetization on the platform.

This can be true since a whole lot of social platforms are introducing new and unique ways to monetize their apps for creators as more ways of monetization means a better revenue for the creator thus attracting more creators to the platform. With more creators on a platform, more users would be attracted thus generating a whole lot of revenue for the platform.

This new feature is not yet officially announced by Instagram, but it is expected that the release date of the feature will be disclosed in the near future. Once released the feature will prove to be very successful for Instagram and will surely drive a lot of traffic to the platform.

Finally, a way to post nudes without your coworkers seeing them.

How to use the close friends feature on instagram

Twitter is developing a feature called Flock that will allow users to curate a list of people to send certain tweets out to, reminiscent of Instagram’s Close Friends feature. The feature was first teased by Twitter last July, along with other experimental features like the ability to downvote tweets.

Reverse engineering whiz Alessandro Paluzzi discovered code in the Twitter app confirming the feature is very much still in the development pipeline. At the time the feature was known as “Trusted Friends,” but the name has since shifted to “Flock,” according to code found by Paluzzi.

Much like Instagram’s Close Friends, Flock will allow users to add followers to a list and later send out tweets exclusively to those people. Right now Twitter is playing around with a list cap of 150 people. Plenty of people to send your nudes out to in a less public fashion. (RIP Fleets.)

Some details — Twitter has yet to confirm any details about the Flock feature except for July’s tease. At that point, we got a quick look at the UI, which includes a dropdown menu at the top of a new tweet to choose between audiences. That UI also included an option to have tweets from trusted friends appear at the top of your timeline.

New details from Paluzzi’s reverse-engineering include the 150-person list limit and the fact that people on your list will not be notified if you remove them. The back-end code also reveals what appears to be a notification you’ll receive when someone adds you to their Flock. What that notification will actually look like is unclear.

Sure, why not — Adding a Close Friends-esque feature makes perfect sense for Twitter. Lots of users maintain separate accounts to keep certain tweets private; why not just build a feature that allows you to maintain two modes of communication on a single account?

Twitter has taken a significant interest in creating more personal timeline experiences. The Communities feature, which is still in beta testing, also allows users to curate their own close-knit Twitter experience. Both features understand the fact that sometimes you want to tweet something to only a specific subset of your followers.

Will this, like Instagram’s Close Friends, be used for posting nudes in a not-so-public manner? You bet it will, especially given that Twitter is much more accepting of nudity than Instagram is. We also wouldn’t be surprised if this ended up being misused for bullying purposes — because what is Twitter for if not taking screenshots and then dunking on them?

If you recently updated Instagram you might have noticed that a brand new feature has just launched. Say hello to “Close Friends” and find out more about this exciting new addition below.

Have you ever hesitated to post something out of fear that your parents might not like it or that it could impact your professional life? It might seem strange to imagine a world where social media isn’t exclusively reserved for friends but, these days, it’s not uncommon for people to connect with their employers, colleagues, and even members of the local community on platforms like Instagram. That’s where “Close Friends” comes in, giving you greater freedom to choose who you share content with.

What is Close Friends?

Close Friends is a new feature exclusive to Instagram Stories that allows you to create a list of friends you consider yourself close with and grant them special viewing permissions. Once you’ve created this list you can choose whether or not to share a Story with your entire follower list or just your Close Friends. If you select Close Friends, only the people in this list will see your Story and it will be hidden from all your other followers.

How do I Create a Close Friends List?

To create your Close Friends list, navigate to your profile page and then tap the burger menu icon (the button with three lines) in the top right corner of your screen. This will open a menu with several different choices; tap the Close Friends option. From here you will be able to search your Instagram followers and select who you would like to add to your the list. You can change who is on this list any time.

Once you have created your Close Friends list, simply open Stories like you normally would, take a picture or video, and tap the Close Friends icon in the bottom left hand corner to share it with this list only. When you post a Story to your Close Friends, they’ll see a green ring around your profile photo in the Stories tray whilst Stories posted to all followers appear with a pink ring.

Why Use Close Friends?

Instagram began testing the feature when they noticed that users were calling out for more control over their audiences. In practical terms, this will allow users to share content they may have thought twice about posting before. Need to vent after a stressful day at work? Feel like sharing a couple of pictures from a particularly messy night out? Now you can be sure only the people you’re comfortable with seeing these Stories can access them.

From a marketing perspective, Close Friends will give businesses and brands a unique opportunity to target content to particular users, offering a greater level of personalisation across Instagram Stories. The feature could be used to curate a list of VIP users or paid subscribers, giving them access to exclusive content such as first-looks at new products as well as discounts and sales. Close Friends could also allow brands to nurture working relationships by allowing them to create a higher volume of content targeted specifically towards partners or influencers without alienating their primary audience of consumers.

For fast, responsive, social media marketing get in touch with our Digital Marketing team via the contact form here or call us on 0161 850 2381.