How to Get Verified on Instagram in Six Simple Steps

A six-step journey to potential verification.

by Hannah Margaret Allen
Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash

On Tuesday, Instagram announced three new tools aimed at beefing up the social media platform’s safety. While supporting third-party authenticator apps and getting user history is cool and fine and whatever, the most exciting addition is the new verification form, which gives all “notable public figures” the chance to get verified, nabbing that enviable blue badge.

Verification on Instagram is intended to confirm the authenticity of accounts. It’s also a blue badge of influencer honor that notifies everyone on the ‘gram that you are, not only, who you say you are but you are someone. And while the old verification process was riddled with mysticism (“Be famous and have a ton of followers, work with a digital agency and have them submit a request for you, or pay a third party or someone at Instagram to get you verified,” suggested one Forbes writer), the new process is fairly straightforward. Here’s how (to apply) to get verified on Instagram.

Ben Affleck agrees to Instagram's Terms of Use. 


Step One: Agree to Instagram’s Terms of Use and Community Guidelines

To begin this quest for blue-badged glory, users must agree to Instagram’s Terms of Use and ensure the account adheres to the Community Guidelines, which means users must refrain from posting stolen or inappropriate photos (among other stipulations).

The writer's authentic, unique, complete, and loosely notable Instagram account.

Instagram / hm_allen

Step Two: Be Authentic, Unique, Complete, and Notable

Next stop in your journey to verification, make sure your account passes Instagram’s authenticity, uniqueness, completeness, and notability standards. Don’t be alarmed by authenticity, uniqueness, and completeness. This is just a fancy way of saying make sure the username belongs to a real person (or brand, if you’re one of those aforementioned influencers) and only one person (or brand and not a cat meme account). “Complete” just means you have a bio, profile picture, and at least one post.

The final Fruit of the Instagram Spirit is a bit more convoluted. Notability, which I initially thought implied follower count, officially requires the account to “represent a well-known, highly searched for person, brand or entity.” So if there’s a way to make sure people are searching for you, do that.

Find 'Settings' by going to your profile, then tapping the three-line icon in the righthand corner.

Step Three: Tap Settings

As someone whose morning ritual consists of snoozing the alarm on my phone and promptly opening Instagram, I was annoyed by how long it took me to find ‘Settings.’ Here’s the path: open the app > go to your profile (lower right-hand corner, your profile picture is the icon) > three-line icon (upper right-hand corner) > Settings (bottom of the pane).

Once in settings, scroll to the bottom to — ding, ding, ding! — request verification. 

Step Four: Tap Request Verification

My verification trek took a small detour, here, as this “Request Verification” option took a few hours to appear. This resulted in foolishly thinking I needed to make my account a business account (so I did that), but that was an unnecessary step I later learned (and immediately undid it).

You will need a full name and a valid ID. 

Step Five: Input Your Full Name and Identification

You quest culminates with you entering your full name and snapping a photo of a valid form of identification. In my case, I used my driver’s license, but you could use a passport or another official document.

Step Six: Tap Send and Wait for Instagram’s Verdict

The final step, after sending off your photo of identification, is to pray for Instagram’s mercy as you wait for its proclamation.

Despite being repeatedly denied a blue check via Twitter’s verification process, I’m optimistic about my chances of getting verified on Instagram. I will update the post with any new developments, and please, dear Instagrammer, let me know how your verification quest goes by emailing