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Deleting (or Unsending) Instagram Messages with PCs, iOS, and Androids

Everyone has the horror story of accidentally sending a message that was meant for someone else. Perhaps you want to delete DM chats you’ve had with someone? This article is going to give you the real scoop on how to delete Instagram messages. 

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Hey everyone! It is Frankie here again to give you some insight into what you need to know about Instagram Direct.

Need to relieve yourself of some sensitive messages or remove a message that you mistakenly sent to the wrong recipient? You might also be looking to declutter your threads by getting rid of conversations that have no likelihood of continuing.

In truth, there are a few things that you should know to delete sent messages in Instagram. No matter the device you use, I have put together steps for iOS, Android, and PCs.

You don’t need a time machine to help in this potential problem.

There is a feature built-in to Instagram permitting you to delete direct messages on Instagram in two ways. These are:

  • Delete a single message
  • Eliminate a full conversation

Unfortunately, at this time there is no way to remove individual received messages. To accomplish something like this, you would just delete the full conversation.

I’m sure you are ready to begin. So, let’s get to it. 

A Word of Caution: If you wish to delete these messages because you have something you wish to keep hidden, you should know that Instagram can be easily hacked. Learn a little more about this and how to protect yourself from these attacks.

Deleting Individual Instagram Messages Using an Android

If you intend to only delete a single message from your Instagram, here are the steps you must follow:

  1. Open Instagram and login
  2. In the top right corner click on the chat icon
  3. Locate the thread containing the message you want to delete
  4. Long-press the selected message
  5. When the popup menu appears, choose Unsend Message


As though it were magic, the message gets deleted on your end and theirs.

Note: deleting the message does not keep its target from being notified that you sent something. If they do not read it before you delete it, then they will not be able to.

Delete a Full Conversation on Instagram with an Android

Deleting an entire conversation is also possible, you would just follow these steps instead:

  1. Open up Instagram on your Android and login
  2. Click on the chat icon in the top right corner
  3. Select the conversation from the list of active threads
  4. Long press the conversation you intend to delete
  5. When the menu appears, choose Delete


Pretty easy stuff, right? All the components of that conversation are now gone from your phone with no trace.

Note: Once you delete a chat, you might not be able to see it anymore on your account, but those involved in that chat still can.

If you are using Instagram on an iOS device, you can follow the upcoming steps to remove individual messages or conversations on an iPhone or iPad.

Deleting Individual Instagram Messages Using iOS

Deleting a single message from a conversation on Instagram with your iPhone or iPad is not complicated, either. Here is what you will need to do:

  1. Open Instagram on your iOS device and login
  2. Navigate to the top right corner and select the chat icon
  3. Find the conversation containing the message that you wish to unsend or delete
  4. Long press this message you wish to undo
  5. In a moment, a popup menu appear. Click the Unsend option to remove the message.

Deleting Individual Instagram Messages Using iPhone

Note: The messages you attempt to delete might have already been viewed by recipients, and therefore, it might really be of little use to remove them.

If you are looking to remove an entire conversation with your iOS device, then the guide continues below here to show you how to accomplish this.

Delete a Full Conversation on Instagram with iOS

  1. First, open up Instagram on your iOS device and login to your account.
  2. At the top right corner of the screen, you can select the chat icon to bring up available threads
  3. Select the name of the contact representing the conversation you wish to delete.
  4. Swipe to the left over that conversation
  5. Choose More, then select Delete. You will get a confirmation asking if you want to permanently delete, so you will need to select this option a second time.

Delete a Full Conversation on Instagram with iOS

Note: Once an entire chat is deleted you will not be able to see it anymore, but it will not delete this full thread from the others engaged in the conversation.

That is how you delete Instagram messages from iOS. Now that we have figured this out, there is still a group of users that need to learn steps to delete individual messages and full conversations using their computers. That continues below.

Deleting Individual Instagram Messages Using a PC

Use this short and concise guide to determine how you can delete single messages from Instagram when you are using your computer:

  1. Open Instagram on your computer and login to the service
  2. On the top right corner of the screen, you must select the chat option
  3. Locate the conversation containing the message you want to delete or unsend
  4. Hover over this message you want to delete
  5. Click the meatball menu (three dots aligned horizontally) and then click Unsend.
Note: As I told you before, the messages you wish to delete here might have already been viewed. If this is the case, there is little that unsending would do, so you must determine if they have been seen or not.

Want to know how to delete full Instagram chats on your computer? Check out the next section below.

Delete a Full Conversation on Instagram with a PC

Follow these steps to delete a full chat from Instagram on your computer:

  1. Open Instagram on your computer and login to the service
  2. On the top right corner of the screen, you must select the chat option
  3. Next, choose the information icon of the user profile photo that represents the conversation you wish to delete
  4. A menu will load on the screen
  5. Choose to Delete Chat
Note: When you delete the chat, you will no longer be able to see it in your threads, but this does not remove these conversations from other devices belonging to the recipients.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the recipient get a notification that you deleted a message right after you sent it? 

Yes. The user will get a notification when you send/unsend a text. If they were online when you sent it, chances are they already read the message anyway. If they were not online, they will receive just a notification that you deleted a message from the thread.

If someone is blocked, can they see past conversations? 

Yes, that is possible. Deleting conversations that you shared with a user does not keep them from seeing and viewing these conversations after they have been blocked by you. They cannot text you new things or engage in current conversations. You can follow this link to see what happens when you block someone on Instagram.

Can I delete all Instagram DMs at once? 

At this time, Instagram does not allow deleting all messages at one time – there are not even third-party apps to accomplish this. You will have to manually delete these conversations you no longer want one-by-one.

However, you can delete entire conversations at one time. So, the time spent depends on the number of active threads you have. The deletion process is only needed once per conversation, but it beats having to remove them message by message.

Can you recover messages that have been deleted? 

There is a possibility that you can, but there are many variables that keep this from being a straightforward and simple process. Fortunately, I have an entire guide all about that – you can take a look at my guide on recovering deleted Instagram messages here.

How do you hide a conversation instead of deleting it? 

Unlike the more popular alternatives of WhatsApp and Messenger, there is no archive feature for Instagram conversations that really doubles as means of hiding. However, there are still options to achieve this by downloading a file that stores data from your account, including your conversations. You can take a look at this guide to hide conversations on Instagram.


Let’s sum it up by saying that there are multiple ways that you can delete Instagram messages and conversations. The process between nearly all these devices is similar, especially once you access the popup menu. The command to remove it is the same – selecting to Unsend.

Any actual difference is just adding a step or two, or losing them. You should be able to easily navigate the process no matter what device you are using, however.

Before ending this step-by-step guide for deleting Instagram messages, I have a little friendly reminder I believe everyone should consider: once you delete these messages from the conversations you choose there is no undoing this action.

Make sure you are 100% confident in your decision to get rid of it. You need to be aware of this before you choose to start deleting portions of conversations or entire conversations, as you cannot take it back.

There is no feature currently for Instagram that allows users to change their minds and undo actions after deletions, but maybe that’s something in development – you never really know. It’s possible because of the frequencies of those accidentally deleting messages that a function like this could come along. For now though, let’s just be careful with the choices you make.

That is all I have for today! Happy Instagramming everyone!


NOTE: Instead of deleting messages – you could consider hiding them. I wrote a guide about it you should take a look at.
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About Frankie Caruso

I'm Frankie Caruso. I'm a professional amateur in that ugly business of social media, instant messaging apps and computer security. I help all those frustrated people who call themselves digital illiterates to understand something about this confusing digital world.

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