Instagram saves the things we put up. That means old selfies, cat pictures, and your Instagram search history. Your Instagram posts are forever, and so is your Instagram search history.  

While for most of us this just means the #cats hashtag will pop up over and over again, for some it may cause some blushes or relationship problems. Remember that what you do on the internet stays on the internet. The good news: you can delete your Instagram search history. Let’s talk about why and how to delete your Instagram search history.

Why Delete Your Instagram Search History?

Your Instagram search history plays a bigger role in the overall Instagram experience than you might think. Your search history will constantly bring up people you’ve searched before. That means if you’ve stalked your ex, they will pop up every time you want to search something on Instagram.

All of us have looked up a crush, a friend, someone you just met, or a celebrity on Instagram. Instagram remembers this and will show you these profiles in the search bar under “Suggestions.” If you want to avoid any potential embarrassment, you may want to delete your Instagram search history. 

Once you delete your history, you won’t be able to view it directly. But you can easily go back and search your favorite profiles and hashtags again.

Keep reading to find out how to delete your Instagram search history and how to keep certain accounts from showing themselves again.

How to Delete Your Instagram Search History 

The good news is that deleting your Instagram search history is incredibly easy. You can only do this from the Instagram app, which is available on iOS or Android. To delete your Instagram search history, follow these steps: 

  1. Log into Instagram.
  2. Go to your profile page by clicking on the icon at the bottom right of your screen.
  3.  Click on “Settings” (the gear icon in the bottom corner of your screen.)
  4.  Tap “Security.”
  5.  Scroll down until you see “Search History.”
  6. Tap the icon and select “Clear Search History.”
  7. After you select this option, Instagram will ask you to confirm your choice. Select “Yes, I’m sure.” 

A screenshot showing the "Clear Search History" option to delete your Instagram search history

If you’re on an iPhone, you don’t need all these bells and whistles. You can clear your search history right from the Instagram search bar! Just tap on the search bar and you’ll see the word “Clear”. Just press it and it will wipe the data of all users and hashtags you’ve recently seen!

How to Prevent Users From Showing Up in Your Instagram Search History

We have all looked up someone on Instagram perhaps a little too intensely. But once your obsession with that person has faded, why do they keep cropping up when you search anything on Instagram? Doesn’t Instagram know you’ve moved on?

No, it doesn’t. But here’s how you can tell it: 

  1.  Log into Instagram.
  2. Click on the magnifying glass at the bottom of the screen. 
  3.  Tap on the “Search bar” at the top of the screen.
  4. You’ll see four options: “Top”, “People”, “Tags” or “Accounts.”
  5.  Choose “Top” or “Accounts.”
  6. Tap and hold the user you’d no longer like to see. Choose “Hide.”

A screenshot showing the top accounts saved in Instagram search history

Congratulations, you’re done! Now you can live a life in peace from your unwanted Instagram buddy. If you want to reverse it, you can look the users up again and they’ll resume their place in your Instagram search history.

What If It Doesn’t Work?

If you’ve attempted to clear your Instagram search history and it’s still showing up, don’t fret. Here’s how you can fix it:

Restart your device. 

The classic “Have you tried turning it off and on again?” is actually pretty solid advice. Before you delete your Instagram altogether, try this simple trick. If that doesn’t work, move on to…

 Clear your App Cache

If you’re on an Android, you may need to clear the Instagram app’s cache to get rid of your Instagram search history. 

  1.  Go to your Device’s “settings” and locate your app management section.
  2.  Tap on Instagram and open the app storage. 
  3. You’ll see a few options – “Clear Data, Clear Storage” and “Clear Cache.” Select “Clear Cache.”
  4.  Restart your device. 

Be warned that clearing the app cache will log you out and delete your password from memory. Make sure you write it down before continuing!

Uninstall Instagram

If you’ve tried everything above and it still doesn’t work, there’s still hope. As a last resort, you can uninstall the Instagram app.

  1.  Find ‘Settings’ on your phone and go to the App Management. Then, tap on Instagram.
  2.  Tap on ‘Uninstall’, or ‘Delete’ as shown on some devices. This will instantly remove the app from your device.

Alternatively, you can:

  • Uninstall the app from Google Play store.
  • Tap and hold the Instagram app until it wiggles. Then, tap on the ‘X’ button at the top (do this for iPhone).

Do whatever that is the easiest for you. Once you have uninstalled the app, restart your device then reinstall the Instagram app again.

Deleting your Instagram search history is much easier than it may seem. Follow these steps and you’ll have a clear Instagram search history in no time.