Navigating Instagram with Ease: Learn How to Half Swipe on Instagram Like a Boss

Disha Rawat Disha Rawat/ Updated: Jul 17, 2024
7 min read
half swipe on instagram

Are you an avid social media user? Look no further than Instagram – the platform that has taken the world by storm with its captivating photos, videos, and stories.

Launched in 2010, Instagram has evolved from something of a simple photo-sharing app to a global community of over 1 billion monthly active users. 

Due to the range of features and endless scrolling potential, it’s no wonder that people spend an average of 53 minutes per day on the app (that’s more than Facebook and Snapchat!).

This platform has a few hidden tricks up its sleeve, one of which is half-swiping. Sounds interesting, right? With this, you can view DMs and Stories anonymously, without alerting the sender that they’ve been seen.

Want to know more about it? Carry on reading this elaborated guide to learn how to half swipe on Instagram like a boss!

The Rise of the Half-Swipe Instagram Trend

On Instagram, people are always on the lookout for new ways to interact with the platform. One trend that has been gaining popularity is the half-swipe feature. As mentioned earlier, it allows to discreetly view content without alerting the original poster.

The rise of the half swipe Instagram trend can be attributed to people’s desire for more privacy and control over their interactions. But how is this possible? By only partially swiping, users can see a preview of a post, story, or message without fully engaging with it.

Recently, this trend has sparked curiosity and creativity among people around the globe, leading to new ways of exploring content as well as maintaining anonymity. Be it used for casual browsing or strategic networking, the half swipe Instagram feature offers a unique approach to navigating Instagram like a pro.

Steps to Half Swipe on Instagram DMs?

Here are the steps to half swipe on Instagram DMs:

  1. Launch the Instagram app on your smartphone or iPhone and login if necessary.
  2. Tap on the airplane icon to access direct messages.
  3. Scroll through your conversations and find the one you want to half swipe on.
  4. Now, the moment you open the chat, quickly swipe up before the conversation fully loads. What it does is it prevents the “seen” status from activating.
  5. Once you have successfully done with the aforementioned step, now slowly scroll down the conversation without making it to the end of the current message. 

In case of multiple unseen messages, you want to view them all. The possibilities are that only the last one will remain unseen, and the rest will be marked as seen.

This is how the sender won’t know you’ve seen their message.

Alternative Ways to Read IG Messages Anonymously

If you’re curious about reading Instagram messages discreetly, there are alternative ways to do so without alerting the sender. Here are 3 of them:

Connecting Offline to Stay Under the Radar

One simple way to read Instagram messages anonymously is by going offline. Meaning, turning off the internet connection or disabling Wi-Fi and mobile data before opening the Instagram app:

  1. Turn off the internet connection on the device. And, for added protection, you can enable “Airplane Mode”.
  2. Now that you are offline, open the desired message to read it.
  3. Read the message, get back to it, and do not turn on the Internet as it could trigger the “seen” status.

Use Third-Party Services

With third-party services available that allow you to read Instagram messages anonymously. They typically require you to create an account and connect it with your Instagram profile. Once connected, it allows users to access their DMs through their platform without appearing online on Instagram.

Be mindful, it’s important to exercise caution. This is suggested because they may violate Instagram’s guidelines and compromise your account’s security. 

Restricting and Unrestricting Users

On Instagram, there is a feature called “Restrict” that allows to control who can see activity on the platform. 

By restricting a user, they won’t be able to see when you were last active or if you have read their messages. This is a useful tool for reading messages anonymously without having to go offline. 

Let’s see how to do it:

  1. Open Instagram and then navigate to your profile.
  2. Tap on the “DM icon” from the top right corner of your Feed.
  3. Now open the chat of the user you are willing to restrict.
  4. Click on the account holder’s name at the top.
  5. Tap on the “three dots” icon 
  6. Then, hit on “Restrict”.
  7. You need to confirm the action by tapping “Restrict account”.

You can remove the restriction on the user after viewing the message to restore normal interaction.

How to Half Swipe on Instagram Stories?

How to side swipe on Instagram stories? This can be achieved somehow easily. All you have to do is just follow these steps:

  1. As usual, launch the Instagram app and log in to your account.
  2. Now that you have landed on your feed, tap on the previous story to view the next desired one.
  3. Tap and hold the opened story, then half-swipe without lifting the finger to view the next story.

By doing this, you can watch the story anonymously, but there are three things to note. First, to carry on anonymity you have to swiftly swipe back to the previous story and exit the app.

Second, in case the user has posted multiple stories, you won’t be able to watch the subsequent ones.

And third, you won’t be able to see videos with this method.

Half-Swipe Instagram Reels

The first question that arises in your mind will be “Can you half swipe on Instagram Reels? To answer, absolutely yes!

Let’s talk about how to half-swipe on Instagram Reels, a feature that allows you to quickly browse through content. When watching a Reel, instead of swiping up or down fast, gently half swipe up to see the previous reel or half swipe down to view the next reel. 

In this case, both reels will play.

Remember not to cross the border area and scroll down enough till the new reel starts playing.

Pros and Cons of Half Swiping

Here are the pros and cons of mastering the art of half-swiping on Instagram:

  • Faster and more efficient 
  • Easier to use with one hand
  • Allows for quicker navigation through screens
  • Can be less tiring for the fingers
  • Can make multitasking easier
  • This can lead to accidental swipes or mistakes
  • May not work well for all users, particularly those with larger hands
  • Might take some time to get used to the half swipe motio


Now that you know how do you half swipe on Instagram, it opens up a world of possibilities to navigate the platform with ease and finesse. By mastering this technique, individuals can engage with content more discreetly and maintain a sense of curiosity and intrigue.

By half-swiping, you can interact with stories, DMs, and Reels in innovative ways. It’s all about finding ways to explore content without committing or revealing too much.

As you incorporate the half swipe Instagram into a daily feed browsing routine, remember that it’s not just a gesture – it’s a mindset. Approach each swipe with intentionality and discover new ways to connect with others at the same time maintaining an element of mystery.

Also Read: How To Unfollow Everyone On Instagram? Easy & Secure (2024)

Frequently Asked Questions
Does Instagram notify someone if I half open their story?

No, Instagram won’t notify anyone about you trying to half-open their stories or even their DMs and reels.

Can you half swipe on Instagram Live?

No, you cannot half swipe on Instagram Live. It is because Instagram Live is a real-time streaming feature.

How do I unread Instagram direct messages?

It is not possible with normal accounts so you have to switch to a professional one, and then you can unread your direct messages.

Does Half-Swiping Still Work on Instagram?

Yes, half swipe Instagram DMs and stories is still a method to view content without letting the account holder know that you have seen it.

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