How to mute people on Instagram (and why you should)

Instagram can get noisy. Restore peace of mind in a few easy steps.

Abrar Al-Heeti Video producer / CNET
Abrar Al-Heeti is a video host and producer for CNET, with an interest in internet trends, entertainment, pop culture and digital accessibility. Before joining the video team, she was a writer for CNET's culture team. She graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Though Illinois is home, she now loves San Francisco -- steep inclines and all.
Expertise Abrar has spent her career at CNET breaking down the latest trends on TikTok, Twitter and Instagram, while also reporting on diversity and inclusion initiatives in Hollywood and Silicon Valley. Credentials
  • Named a Tech Media Trailblazer by the Consumer Technology Association in 2019, a winner of SPJ NorCal's Excellence in Journalism Awards in 2022 and has three times been a finalist in the LA Press Club's National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.
Abrar Al-Heeti
2 min read
Sarah Tew/CNET

Listen, everyone is free to post whatever they want on social media. But you are under no obligation to be bombarded by any of it if you don't want to. That's where Instagram's mute feature comes in handy.  

Brett Pearce/CNET

Muting can be helpful if you want to keep following someone on Instagram, but don't necessarily want to see them pop up on your feed all the time (an ex, for instance?). It can also be useful if there's just content you really don't enjoy seeing, like the random stock images of flowers your aunt regularly uploads along with vague inspirational quotes (you can't unfollow your sweet aunt!). Personally, I've used this feature to block out any FOMO-inducing content -- think people showing off their super extravagant lifestyles -- because peace of mind is critical.

Here's how to mute people on Instagram and enjoy your feed again:

1. Open the Instagram app and go to the profile of the person you want to mute.

2. At the top of their profile, there'll be a button that says Following. (It'll show up under their username and above their posts.) Click on that.

3. A pop-up will show an option that says Mute. Select that.

4. Then, you'll have the option to mute either their posts, stories or both. Hit the toggle slider for either or both those options.

That's all! You can change this anytime by going back through these steps and hitting the toggle again. 

And rest easy: users won't be notified that you've muted them. Now, if TikTok could just roll out a similar feature...