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10 Apps You Need To Improve Your Insta Stories Aesthetic

Because if it isn't in your Stories, it didn't happen.
PHOTO: Jacinda Lopez

As if perfecting our feeds wasn't stressful enough, Instagram's recent update included the Story Highlights option, which lets you keep your favorite (aka best of the absolute best) Stories front and center on your profile forever. So what does this mean for you, a self-respecting Millennial/Gen Z-er/person of any age who believes that your social media presence is the first—and possibly best—impression of who you are, what your life is about, and what your #aesthetic is? Hint: It means you gotta start paying closer attention to what's going into those precious 15 seconds of fame you're getting. Sure, you already knew about the gifs, the polls, the uber-easy hashtagging, the color dropper—but how else can you make sure that cutie who's been sliding into your DMs doesn't tap right to skip that Boomerang of you looking hot AF?

Here, some of our favorite apps you can use to set your Instagram Stories on ~*fire*~.

  1. 8mm/iSupr8


    Totally worth the respective P99 and P49, especially if you're into the vintage, old-school, nostalgic look—and we do mean old: their filters run the gamut from Victorian-inspired Siena to a 1970s filter that makes every image or video you take look like a screencap from Dazed and Confused which, IMHO, can only be a good thing.


  2. HypeType


    How do you go above and beyond the new Instagram typefaces? Cute as they initially were, everyone is using Modern, or Neon, or even the classic... Classic. Our suggestion: HypeType, which lets you add moving text overlays to photos and videos.

  3. PocketVideo


    Voice overs? Text intros? Overlays? PocketVideo lets you do all those things and more, with an interface that somehow fools you into thinking you know what you're doing. We love it for adding, erm, real-time reactions, if you will, with the brush and text tools.

  4. Flipagram


    We've all been there: muting an otherwise gorgeous video because of some really annoying background noise, or some really distracting commentary you somehow managed to pick up. This app lets you add music—good music, we promise—to your videos. It even has some fun filters which are a nice change from the usual bunnies and night sky and kisses.


  5. Storeo/CutStory/StorySplit


    What's the point of spending all your time and energy perfecting a video that lasts a measly 15 seconds? While we can't tell you how you can hack the length of your Stories, Storeo, CutStory, and StorySplit let you slice and dice and chop up your X-minutes-long file into 15-second videos so you can seamlessly upload them. A disclaimer: We recommend upgrading to get rid of that watermark. Otherwise, you're welcome.



  6. VSCO


    It has its haters ("Sooooo hipster OMG"), but it's a classic, and for good reason: Their preset filters are timeless, and the app keeps tabs on the minor tweaks you've made in the past. This means you barely have to do any thinking to get your feed in order.

  7. Snapseed


    Preset filters not cutting it? Bring in the big guns with Snapseed which, we swear, nearly every pro uses when they need to edit on the go. This app lets you adjust things you never realized existed with accuracy. You'll feel so legit.


  8. Hyperlapse/Hyper Timelapse


    Find yourself on an artsy streak and want to show the world how awesome your sketches are? Finally managed to gather the strength to put your own Get Ready With Me online? Two words: time lapse. And this is the app to do it with—it even has multiple speed settings!  Who knows, your smoky eye shadow skills might finally go viral.


  9. Snapchat


    Allow us to explain: There are certain things that the constantly updated OG does best, like uber '90s personalized videos of you going about your day, labelled "X's Wednesday" or something. It isn't just rainbow puke or face swaps anymore, so even if you couldn't care less about your Snap streak, this is a good one to have around.

  10. KiraKira+


    The only thing better than a fire AF selfie or video? A fire AF selfie or video ~*that twinkles*~. And that's exactly what you're gonna get with KiraKira. The sparkles are definitely more than worth the P49 you'll spend—a Swarovski filter, after all, is priceless. Shine bright, you social media diamond.

Follow Gaby on Instagram.