How I Edit My Instagram Photos


I am probably just like the 60% of Instagram users who want to have a cohesive and aesthetically pleasing feed. I definitely don’t have the best feed on the app but it has a pretty decent flow so if you want to take a page from my editing book continue reading.

Camera I use:

I only use the iPhone camera which works great in the right lighting.

Apps I use:

  1. VSCO cam

This is the holy grail of photo editing apps. I use this app to add filters and make adjustments to other elements of the pictures such as exposure, contrast, shadows and highlights. Unless my pictures are black and white or filter-free, this is the only app I use.

  1. Facetune

This app is perfect for smoothing out roughness in photos, concealing, whitening and blurring specific areas. Facetune also has filters but I have never used these.

  1. Instagram

I use instagram only to adjust the brightness in photos, cropping or any other last minute touch ups before posting an image.

If you follow me on Instagram (if you don’t, do) you will most likely be familiar with the images below.

Edits (objects):

  • I wanted to take a picture of my freshly done nails (because let’s be honest, they chip a day after being painted) but I didn’t want it to be generic. My tip is if you are taking a picture of something “basic” try to add more personality to it by placing it against interesting back grounds.
  • The pot plant in the background is next to a window with a white curtain and that helps to enhance the lighting in the photo.
  • VSCO edits used:

Filter: A5 +12.0

Exposure: -0.4

Contrast: -1.0

Saturation: -0.8

Instagram edits used:

Slightly lowered brightness

Cropped photo into a square

I pretty much do this for all pictures that are focused on an object as much as the background, this picture followed the same technique.

Edits (food)

Every time I have taken a bare food picture it has looked anything but appetizing and that is why I heavily rely on filters. Usually, pictures that go on my instastory are not heavily filtered but my food pictures usually are and here is the reason why:

  • Food placement is important. Add elements that’ll make the dish pop. For instance I added chocolate shavings to the waffles, icing sugar to the cookies or if you make a savoury dish, herbs like basil and cilantro add a pop of colour (and not to mention flavour).
  • Busy backgrounds are not that imperative for food, you don’t want anything that will take away from the dish. So just keep it simple
  • VSCO edits:

Filter: H2 +12.0

Saturation: +1.3

Contrast: +1.2

Exposure: +0.3

Edits (Selfies)

While I just copy and paste filters for the two aforementioned edits, pictures of myself are a lot more different to edit because they are not quite cookie-cutter. It all depends of how good of a “face day” I am having.


Lower brightness, crop photos

Facetune edits:

When I have an acne flare up or any skin imperfections I use the smoothing option to even out my skin.

I use the whitening feature to make the eyes pop

For this specific photo:

VSCO edits

Filter: H2 +12.0

Exposure: -1.4

When all else fails, I opt for the black and white filter. It handles all those imperfections, no problem.





More related posts: 

14 iPhone Life Hacks You Need To Know 

Follow me on Instagram: @_mathuto 


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