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Instagram is a great site if you want to look at pictures posted by your friends, family and famous people. It allows you to stay connected and see what’s going on in others’ lives in an entertaining and fun fashion. In addition to looking at photos, you also have the ability to message people through Instagram Direct. This can further deepen the connection.

If you’ve had your Instagram account for a long time and have sent many messages, the older ones may get lost in the shuffle or perhaps you accidentally deleted them. If you are wondering how to see old messages on Instagram, you have to know the right steps.

Different Types of Instagram Messages

Before explaining how to see old messages on Instagram, it’s beneficial if you know the different types of Instagram messages that exist. There are two different types: ordinary and disappearing.

  • When it comes to “ordinary” messages, these are saved in your history and can be accessed whenever you want to read them again.
  • For “disappearing” messages, you can only view these once. After you’ve read them, they
    disappear.

You can delete or save your messages from your Instagram history, but keep in mind that they aren’t totally gone. They will still exist in some form on a server somewhere. This works to your benefit because if you’re ever wondering how to see old messages on Instagram, there is a way to restore them and read them.

How to See Old Messages on Instagram Using a Mobile Phone

To see your old messages on Instagram using your mobile phone, you’ll follow the steps listed below. These work for both Android and iPhones, so it doesn’t matter what type of phone you have.

Step 1: Open the Instagram App

The first thing you’ll need to do when asking how to see old messages on Instagram is to open the Instagram app.

Look for the pink and purple-y app with a camera in the middle and click on it.

Step 2: Open Your Messages

Once you have gained access to your Instagram account, you’ll then want to open your messages. The different ways to do this include:

  • The first is that you can swipe left on your phone.
  • The second is you can click on the icon at the top of the screen that looks like an arrow with a line through the middle or a paper airplane.

Step 3: Scroll Through Your Messages to Find What You’re Looking For

Once you’ve gotten into your message screen, at the top of the page you will see different options, including “Chat,” “Calls” and “Requests.”

Since you’re looking for text messages, you’ll want to make sure you’re in the “Chats” tab.

All of the conversations you’ve had with people in the past will be listed on this screen.

Scroll through until you find what you’re looking for.

Tip

Deciding to access your old Instagram messages can be fun, but keep in mind that the process will take time. If you’ve sent a lot of messages, this could be an exercise in patience, but one that’s well worth it.

How to See Old Messages on Instagram Without Scrolling

The steps listed above will allow you to access your messages on Instagram and scroll through until you find what you’re looking for. However, if you’ve sent a lot of messages and you don’t have hours to spend looking for something, there are some other options you can consider.

Step 1: Open the Instagram App

As usual, to be able to access your Instagram messages, you have to be in your account. If you’re on your mobile phone, look for the icon and click on it.

Step 2: Access Your Messages

Once you’ve gained access to your account, you can then go to your messages by swiping left or clicking the arrow/airplane icon at the top.

On the “Chats” tab, you will see a search bar at the top of the page. If you’re looking for messages from a specific person, click on this and then type in their name.

click on the paper airplane icon and scroll down Through Your Messages until you find the profile you are looking for

Another option to access messages from a specific person is to go to their profile page.

To do this, instead of swiping left or clicking on the icon on your homepage, you’ll click on your profile button at the bottom of the screen.

Then, go to Followers and find the person you’re looking for. Go to their profile page.

Once there, in the middle of the screen, you will see some boxes with options. Click on the “Message” button to be taken to the messages you’ve shared with that individual.

once you are in the profile click on message to find your old messages - how to see old messages on Instagram

How to Recover Deleted Instagram Messages on iPhone and Androids

In addition to wondering how to see old messages on Instagram, if you’ve deleted some of your messages and want them back, you’ll be asking how to recover deleted Instagram messages on iPhone and Android.

You won’t be able to see them in your message list, but you can request to get them from the server. Here’s how:

Step 1: Open Your Instagram App

To gain access to your deleted messages, the first thing you need to do is get into your Instagram account.

Step 2: Click on Your Profile

Once you’ve gained access to your account, you’ll then need to click on your Profile icon at the bottom of the screen.

Step 3: Go to Settings

On your profile homepage, you’ll then want to go to Settings. To access these menu options, click on the three bars in the upper right-hand corner of the screen. When the list appears, choose Settings.

It should be the first choice on the list, and it has a gear icon next to it.

Step 4: Open Security

A new menu will appear after you click on Settings, and now you’ll want to pick Security.

This is about in the middle of the screen, and there is a shield with a checkmark next to it.

click on settings and then security - how to see old messages on Instagram

Step 5: Download Your Data

Yet another menu will open, and you’ll need to look for “Download data” and click on it.

Step 6: Input Your Email Address

Before you can download your data from the server, you’ll be asked to input an email address. One might be automatically added, and if that’s where you want your information sent, you can leave the address as is.

If you want to send the information to another email account, you’ll need to type that address in the appropriate space.

Step 7: Request the Download

After determining where you want your Instagram data sent, you’ll then click the “Request download” button at the bottom of the screen.

Keep in mind that it can take up to 2 days for the information to be available, and you’ll get more than messages. However, going through all of that old information can be entertaining and bring up various memories.

click on download data and request download - how to recover deleted Instagram messages on iPhone

Viewing Old Messages on Instagram Using a Computer

When asking how to see old messages on Instagram, all of the steps we’ve gone through above will help you achieve your goals using your mobile phone. If you’re on your computer, there are other steps you’ll need to follow. One of which is using an Instagram message recovery app.

If you’ve sent a ton of messages and aren’t looking forward to the endless scrolling, there are other options you’ll need to look into, including downloading your Instagram data.

Here’s how you’ll accomplish that task:

Step 1: Open Instagram on Your Computer

Using whatever browser you like, go to the Instagram website and input your username and password to access your account.

Step 2: Click on Your Profile

Once on your Instagram homepage, click on your profile icon at the top of the screen on the right-hand side.

Step 3: Open Settings

On your profile homepage, next to the “Edit Profile” button, you will see a gear icon. This is your Settings.

Click on it.

Step 4: Choose Privacy and Security

A settings menu will appear, and from the list of options, you want to click on “Privacy and Security.”

Step 5: Download Your Data

Under the “Privacy and Security” menu, you will see yet another set of options. Look for the header that says, “Data Download,” and then click the “Request Download” link.

Step 6: Check Your Email

There will be an email address that is pre-filled on the next screen, and that is where your data will be sent to.

Click on the blue “Next” button.

Step 7: Enter Your Password

You will be prompted to enter your password. After you’ve done that, you need to click the “Request Download” button. Then, you’ll wait for up to 2 days while Instagram gathers your information from the servers and sends you a link.

Instagram Message Recovery App

Downloading your data to your computer is one way to read old messages from your computer. Another option is to use an Instagram message recovery app.

There are several different options to choose from. One of them is AiGrow, and here’s how you’ll access this tool:

Step 1: Go to the AiGrow Website

To be able to use this app to recover messages on your PC, you’ll need to go to the AiGrow website.

Step 2: Create an Account

Once on the site, you’ll then need to create an account by following the prompts. Don’t worry: this is free, so you won’t have to worry about being billed to use the services.

While creating an account, you will be asked to add your Instagram account. Do this so that you can access your old messages.

click on start free and fill out the form - Instagram message recovery app

Step 3: Manage Your Account

After completing the registration process, you will then click on “Manage Accounts.”

Step 4: Read Your Messages

Clicking “Manage Accounts” will open a screen that gives you access to your messages. You can scroll through the list of names to find the one you’re looking for, or you can type the name into the search bar at the top of the screen to save yourself some time.

on AIGrow - click on manage account - how to see old messages on Instagram - Instagram message recovery app

Use Inflact to see old messages on instagram

Another option you might consider for looking at old messages on Instagram from your PC is to use Inflact. Unlike AiGrow, this option costs, but the features included could help you if you use Instagram for business purposes. 

Step 1: Go to the Inflact Website

Using whatever browser you prefer, go to the Inflact website and click Sign Up.

Step 2: Follow the Prompts to Register

Fill in the necessary information and add your Instagram account to be able to access your messages.

Step 3: Choose a Service

Inflact offers a variety of different services to help you manage your Instagram account. If you’re only interested in reading your messages, then choose Direct Messages and then make a payment.

Step 4: Check Your Messages

Once the payment has been processed, you’ll be able to check and send messages from the Inflact site.

Tip

If you know you’re going to need messages in the future, or you just want them to bring a smile to your face, consider taking a screenshot and saving the image in your Photo Gallery on your phone or a folder on your computer.

Taking a Trip Down Memory Lane

Reading old Instagram messages can be exciting. If you’re wondering how to see old messages on Instagram using your mobile phone, here’s what you’ll need to do:

  • Step 1: Open the Instagram App
  • Step 2: Open Your Messages
  • Step 3: Scroll Through Your Messages to Find What You’re Looking For

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