Just like all other social media platforms, Instagram allows you to chat in DM apart from its primary functionality: sharing photos and videos.
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Many Instagram users wonder how to recover direct messages after they delete the DMs deliberately or accidentally. But can it actually be done, or is this just a myth spread by third-party apps’ marketers to make you buy their software?
Spoiler: The only way to see the deleted message on Instagram is to ask a person you’re chatting with to resend it to you. How come? Let’s bust some myths on the matter.
Instagram Message Unsend
On Instagram, you can delete your entire chat or single messages, unsend DMs, and turn on the Vanish Mode, which allows you to make DMs disappear automatically.
If it's quite clear with the whole deletion thing, let’s see how you can unsend a DM on Instagram:
Open the Instagram DM chat you want to unsend the message in.
Click on the selected message and hold it.
Find the Unsend option and click on it.
After this is done, the message disappears and becomes invisible to all chat members, including you. Note that you can unsend (and thus, delete) only your own messages this way.
What’s more, if another chat member has their DM notification on, they might be able to read the message as a push on their smartphone screen.
Instagram Vanish Mode in DM
Instagram has introduced the feature that allows users to make their DM messages vanish some time after they were sent in 2020. To activate it, you need to open one of the chats and swipe up the screen.
To return to the regular mode, swipe the screen up again.
This mode can be used permanently or enabled from time to time.
When the message has been viewed by all participants of the chat, it will disappear after the chat is closed.
If someone takes a screenshot of your chat while you’re using vanish mode, you’ll be notified.
Disappearing message mode applies to all chat participants. That said, when you or someone else turns on the vanish mode, it activates for everyone else in the chat.
Now let’s figure out if you actually can see and recover deleted messages on Instagram.
How to Recover Deleted Instagram Messages
Let’s consider all popular ways of recovering deleted messages on Instagram that are usually covered in articles on the internet and find out if they work at all.
Spoiler: They don’t. So don’t waste your time and sometimes money when read this advice:
Method 1. Request Instagram Data
Many bloggers claim you can restore the DM messages by requesting your data from Instagram in settings (Settings → Security/Privacy and Security → Data Download → wait for up to 2 days for an email with your data in it).
Following this path and requesting your data, you’re asking Instagram to collect your data and send it to you in an email as a zip attachment. Instagram indeed sends it in an archive with a full backup of your account with photos, videos, stories, chats and so on. But the thing is that there will be no deleted chats. This is merely a copy of your current account with all current messages and chats.
So this method isn’t going to work.
Method 2: Third-Party Tools & Sites to Recover Deleted Instagram Messages
Many app developers promise to recover your deleted Instagram messages. Yet, not a single tool we’ve tried worked for us as a DM recovery tool.
Apart from apps, there are also a plethora of sites that claim just the same. But in reality, all of them are scammy and don’t look credible. Many of them force you to fill out some forms and surveys, which can be accessed not from any location. Some work like the Instagram data request tool and send you the archive with your data that may or may not contain deleted messages inside them.
So this method doesn’t seem to work either.
Method 3. Recover Deleted Instagram Messages with Facebook
Another way that is often covered in similar articles is retrieving deleted Instagram messages through Facebook. This method is believed to get your Instagram DMs from your connected Facebook account’s inbox.
Sadly, this method used to work some time ago but not anymore. Due to the latest Facebook updates, there are now no possible ways to view deleted Instagram messages on your Facebook profile.
So, this method no longer works.
Urgh, So Can I Actually Recover Deleted Instagram DMs?
The only way to do that is to ask a chat member where you deleted your messages from to resend you the DMs since when you delete an Instagram message, you do it only on your side. Unless you unsend it – this is why we’ve talked about this at the beginning.
So, to put it simply, there is no other way to recover deleted Instagram messages other than asking the user you’ve chatted with to resend them.