How to Turn off Read Receipts on Instagram

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There’s a trendy feature on all social media platforms that we are quite aware of: read receipts.

We all know how they work - whenever someone reads a message, the sender receives a little “read” sign on the screen.

In the case of Instagram read receipts, each Instagram DM you read will be marked by this common feature.

But, sometimes, we don’t want another Instagram user to know that we have just read their messages, right?

Thus, if you want to prevent the other party from knowing that you did so, or vice versa, then this article is for you.

Continue reading today’s article on GrowFollowing to get each answer you need about:

  • How to turn off read receipts on Instagram;
  • What to know about read messages on Instagram DMs;
  • How to read a text message on your Instagram DM without other users knowing you did.

Can You Turn Off the Read Receipt on Instagram Direct Messages?

Sadly, you cannot disable read receipts on Instagram.

Whenever you get a direct message or a message request, and you choose to read that message, the other person will know that you did so.

There isn’t an official feature to “hide” this messaging receipt, but this doesn’t mean that you can read a message inside an Instagram DM conversation without them knowing.

You could simply react to messages on Instagram without directly responding, but if what you want is to access your Instagram DM without any other user receiving a notification, then we must find a way around it.

Can You Disable Your Instagram Activity Status?

Yes, you can get rid of your Instagram activity status. Your activity status appears next to your username on the inbox tap.

Thus, if you have an active status and you are not responding to messages, they will know that you are using the app on your phone.

That’s why you should disable your active status from time to time, depending on your needs.

You can do so by reading the following guide on your web browser: Instagram Activity Status.

How to Turn off Read Receipts on Instagram

As we mentioned before, there isn’t an official method or feature to get rid of Instagram read receipts.

You can delete Instagram messages on both sides, but you cannot turn off read receipts on Instagram.

In any case, there are some workarounds that we have identified.

Use the method that suits you the most, and let’s learn how to turn off read receipts on Instagram direct messages right away!

1. Read Instagram Messages through Message Notifications

The first method to read messages without the Instagram sender knowing is by doing so from your notification bar.

You will not be opening the message, meaning that the read receipts on Instagram will not show.

Read the following steps to turn on notifications:

  1. Go to your profile page by tapping on your profile picture;
  2. Select the hamburger menu icon to go to settings, which appears at the top right corner of the screen of your device;
  3. Scroll down until you find the “Notification” menu;

  1. Turn on notifications for “Messages and Calls.”
  2. Enable each Instagram message notification related to messages on these settings.

Now, whenever you get Instagram message notifications, you will be able to swipe down on your phone and read them without actually opening the message.

We know that this isn’t quite exactly a way to learn how to turn off read receipts on Instagram, but it’s just one of the alternatives we’ll show.

2. Go Offline and Read the Instagram Direct Message

Another alternative you can employ to turn off read receipts is by going offline inside the Instagram app.

You would need to turn off Wi-Fi and mobile data. We highly recommend you enable Airplane Mode to prevent further inconveniences.

You can enable Airplane Mode from your phone’s main menu.

Either way, this is what you must do:

  1. Open Instagram, wait so the direct messages load (without opening them, of course), and tap on the Airplane Mode button;
  2. Open the messages you want to read and read them out. Since your internet connection has been turned off, read receipts on Instagram will not appear;
  3. Log out from your account. In order for the process to work, users must entirely log out.

Then, turn off Airplane Mode, re-establish your internet connection, and sign in again.

You will see that the read messages in your inbox will not have the receipt!

And that’s how to turn off read receipts on Instagram by turning your device offline.

3. Restrict and Unrestrict an Instagram Account

This method also works, but it can be quite complicated. It consists of restricting an Instagram account, and then unrestricting it.

Keep in mind that restricting is not the same as muting someone on Instagram.

Without further ado, this is what you have to do:

  1. Go to the Instagram profile of the message sender;
  2. Tap on the three dots and select the “Restrict” option;

  1. Go to your inbox - the message will be now inside the Message Requests folder;
  2. You can read this message without a read receipt appearing. Check it out, and proceed;
  3. If you want to answer, go back to the user’s profile, and tap on the “Unrestrict” button.

Since read receipts on Instagram do not appear on unwanted requests, this is one of the best alternatives you have to hide them.

4. Use a Third-Party Instagram App DM Manager

Finally, there are plenty of third-party apps that let you “turn off” read receipts (in a way).

They work by directly sending you the DMs into your email inbox.

This way, you can read them before you respond to them, all outside the domains of the Instagram app.

Some of these apps work to turn off read receipts, and some don’t - we always recommend you do your own research before giving access to your account to any third-party application.

That’s all about this topic for now! Which alternative do you prefer? Get more Instagram content here, at GrowFollowing!


How to Turn Off Seen on Instagram?

You cannot hide nor turn off the “Seen” option on Instagram, but you can follow one of the aforementioned alternatives so you can read the messages without the other user knowing.

About the author

Karen is a senior technical writer and copywriter here at GrowFollowing. Her area of expertize are social media apps and new media.