How to Add Instagram Filters to Existing Photos and Videos

Learn from this guide on how to add Instagram filters to existing photos or videos in the camera roll to make your content much more attractive.

Friday September 30, 2022 4:29 PM PDT by Karen Greene

Behaviors such as following others, using hashtags, and staying active generate massive exposure on the photo & video sharing platform Instagram, which seems ideal for both individual influencers and businesses.

Since the uploaded images or videos decide whether an Instagram account gets enough attention, the most crucial thing for every Instagram user is to improve the content. And if you haven’t tried Instagram filters yet, you’re definitely out of touch.

In the following article, you’ll learn how to add Instagram filters to existing photos/videos, this is a complete guide so you’ll find tutorials for applying Instagram filters in different scenarios.

What is an Instagram Filter

In a nutshell, Instagram filters are image overlays that you can put on any of your photos in one click, which is to make your image more visually attractive. Instagram filters don’t change or cover the objects in your photos but alter the color grading and shading of which.

Some Instagram filters even give your photos a unique vibe and completely change the sensation of it.

For users scrolling through Instagram feeds, Instagram posts with finely planned filters appear with a more professional look and are higher in quality, which means tons of more potential clicks and likes.

Instagram Filters Comparison

Instagram Filters Comparison

How to Add Instagram Filters to Existing Videos

Now that you’ve learned what is an Instagram filter and its importance, it’s time for practice. Bear in mind that being more aesthetic in view is the key to pleasing your audience, and always go for the filter that fits the scene!

By adding Instagram filters to existing photos in your camera roll, you get to add filters to videos and photos before uploading. So let’s see how to add Instagram to existing videos in Instagram Story!

Add Instagram Filters to Existing Videos

Add Instagram Filters to Existing Videos

Step 1. Go to Instagram Story

Launch the Instagram app on your mobile phone. From the Instagram app home screen, hit the plus icon on the upper-right side.

Step 2. Import the Footage

In the Instagram media uploading board, swipe up to select and import the footage you intend to apply filters to.

Step 3. Enter Instagram Filter Screen

Hit the stars (triple stars) icon from the upper side to enter the video filter screen.

Step 4. Select a Favored Filter

Scroll from the circular menu bar below to choose a favored video filter. When you’ve selected your favored video filter, hit Done to finish.

How to Add Instagram Filters to Existing Photos

If you look to add Instagram filters to your existing photos in the gallery, it’s doable as well. The process is similar, adding Instagram filters to existing photos, as we did with existing videos. Now let’s take a look at the detailed steps

Follow the steps below to add filters on Instagram to existing photos in your mobile phone’s gallery:

Add Instagram Filters for Existing Photos

Add Instagram Filters for Existing Photos

Step 1. Launch the Instagram app on your mobile phone and swipe left.

Step 2. Hit the lower-left gallery button and select a photo from your gallery, and click on the Effects button (smiley face icon.)

Step 3. Here you can browse for and select a favored filter to add to your photo. Tap on Done when you’ve done selecting.

Add Filters to Existing Photos

How to Use Effects on Instagram Reels

Do not confuse Instagram filters with Instagram effects, while the former only changes the color of your photos, and the latter may change or distort objects in the photos.

As we can commonly see in funny prank videos, Instagram effects are a good choice if you intend to give the characters an interesting look.

The following are the simple steps to apply effects to your photos and videos in your Instagram reels.

Add Effects to Instagram Reels

Add Effects to Instagram Reels

Step 1. Go to the home tab and swipe right to go to the storyboard.

Step 2. Hit REEL from the lower options.

Step 3. Tap on the Effect button (with the smiley face icon) to the left.

Step 4. Scroll to select effects from the circular menu bar below to save them to the Story camera.

How to Add Instagram Filters to Photos and Videos Before Uploading

Some of you may wonder, is it possible to add Instagram filters to photos and videos before uploading? The answer is positive, one practical method is registering for a private Instagram account, especially for photo & video editing, and another great method is introduced below.

The following steps are to apply Instagram filters to your photos or videos before you post them, read on to learn and get started.

Step 1. Hit the plus icon from the mid-lower side of the Instagram home screen to select the photo or video.

Step 2. Tap on Next to enter the filter screen, then swipe left on the screen to browse for and choose filters.

Step 3. Hit the Edit button to further adjust the image, such as sharpening and brightness.

Step 4. Whenever you’re ready, tap on “Post” to finish adding filters.

The Final Thoughts

Instagram gets its immense popularity for a reason, the whole process of adding good-looking filters to the photos or videos we intend to share in different situations has been made quite handy by Instagram developers, so thank them a bunch.

This post should cover your needs for using Instagram filters in many different cases, let me know if the information is helpful in the comment section below.


Karen is a professional writer with a background in column writing who enjoys resolving complex topics and explaining them in interesting ways.

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