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Some of the best apps to use to improve your Instagram stories

I get asked multiple times a day what apps I use on my Instagram stories. It’s usually my number one asked question. So I decided to write a blog post on it. Even though some people don’t want you to know but I don’t mind sharing. I also offer a ton of tips on my Instagram stories so check those out next time you’re there! I have them saved on my Instagram highlights.

Let’s talk about Instagram Stories

A few months ago, Facebook announced that Instagram Stories surpassed its competition by acquiring 250 million daily active users within a year of its launch. That’s roughly 50% of Instagram’s total number of daily active users accessing the application.

Source: Recode

The facts

  • According to Instagram, they have helped increased the amount of time people spend on the platform. They encourage users to use it longer and more frequently. It was revealed users under the age of 25 spend more than 32 minutes a day on average, while those older spend more than 24 minutes a day.
  • As for brands, there are over 50% of businesses on Instagram produced a story on the platform and one in five organic stories from businesses will generate a direct message from a follower, potential client or customer. (Source: Instagram)
  • Instagram Stories rolled out 20 new features within Instagram Stories in the base year, including stickers and Boomerang. Since then, it’s become a staple in the world of photo- and video-sharing and social media.
  • Instagram now boasts 800 million monthly active users, 500 million daily active users, and 300 million daily Stories users. The app is also well on its way to reaching one billion monthly active users and is projected to hit the historic mark in January 2018.
  • About 70% of Instagram Stories are watched with the sound on, meaning that advertisers can be assured of engagement (as users must manually toggle the sound on; audio is not automatic). Instagram makes it clear that Stories with sound on creates the most immersive experience and storytelling.

With everyone on Instagram stories these days you need to make sure you’re on there connecting with your followers. To be honest, sometimes I just watch stories and don’t actually scroll through the feed. It’s just easier to catch up that way. But, if someone has an interesting story, I’m more likely to go to their page and see their new photos. It’s a great way to increase your engagement and now that brands pay for Instagram stories it’s more important than ever to increase your viewers.

Here are the top 5 apps I use to to set my Instagram stories apart from others

instagram stories apps


Unfold is a toolkit for storytellers. Create beautiful and engaging stories with minimal and elegant templates. Basically the modern way to collage your photos. No one likes seeing a million photos on your Instagram stories so when you can combine them multiple ways in a new fun way it really draws attention to those photos and videos. I love unfold because you can also use wallpapers as backgrounds (which I offer on my IG highlights for free) and you can combine videos and photos. Which helps people feel like they’re actually there. It’s the best!


· Templates
25 templates + 45 premium templates. Tell your story how you want to.

· Fonts
5 fonts + advanced text tools. Set the mood of your story.

· Photo & Video Support
We support photo and video media. Storytelling has no limitations.

· High Quality Export
Export your stories in high resolution for seamless sharing to other platforms.

· No Account Required
Just download Unfold and start creating stories. No strings attached.

You can go the vintage route and use polaroid frames, cinema rolls, or layered ones.  It’s the best way to create a polished template for Instagram stories. It’s already widely popular and is consistently gaining 100,000 new users a day. You can use IG fonts or the unfold fonts to label or write on your polaroid. It’s your preference. But this next app is great for that!

2. Over

If you’re looking for custom fonts, custom templates, fun backgrounds, and a more free range style this app is for you. You can also upload your design from Unfold into Over just to add the font of your choice. Which is what I usually do. If you have a branded background, nows the time to create one. My friend Dayna Bolden does this really well. If you need an example, make sure to check out her stories. Try to keep your stories on brand so when people see them they immediately know it’s you.

A million+ content library in your pocket. What’s better than choosing from 4,000+ editable templates, millions of beautiful, commercial-free stock images and 20,000+ incredible graphics? Discovering more every day.

You can add multiple photos in an unframed collage and add tons of custom elements to your photos!

Check out all you can make and more ideas here!

3. A Design Kit

If you’re a creative person this app is for you! Add simple design, brushes, text, and stickers to your photos… anywhere and everywhere! Choose from carefully crafted markers, paintbrushes, and pencils to draw like it’s your sketchbook. Place the drawing, then resize and recolor it like it’s a design. Grouped by style and need, choose from over 30 fonts in any color or texture to get your text just the way you like it. I love how they have ombre, metallic, and gold colors you can use to change any font! Start with the basics or maybe try something a little more fun. These designs let you add, color, and texturize shapes, lines, and more. Gotta have stickers, right? Working with some of our favorite illustrators, A Design Kit makes it possible to spice up your stories with the stickers no one else has.

Check out a design kit to see what you can create!

4. CutStory

This is the best app when you film a video either on your phone or on snapchat and need to cut it down for IG stories which are 15 seconds. Simply upload your video, select cut to IG and voila! What I love about this is app is now you can add text and music to your videos and adjust the volume! It’s a game changer!

5. ____________

Sign up here to find out the name of the app!

This app was actually used by a director in an Oscar winning film! It’s legit! My favorite app gives your videos a super vintage film feel. This app is all the rage right now and I get asked daily what app this is!

Dust and scratches, retro colors, flickering, light leaks, even frame shakes, all can be instantly added with a single tap of the finger. You can add music for your iTunes library and create pro quality movies from clips with themes in the app! I love that you can even film a video with your iPhone and then when you decide to spice it up you’re able to upload it into the app and add the effects. Being able to apply the effects to existing videos in your camera roll is amazing!

Surprisingly this app also adds a lot of natural brightness to dark videos taken at night without using flash! I love using it for that!

• 7 Lenses: Super 8, Clear, Flickering Frame, Spotlight, Light Leak, Color Fringing and Classic.
• 12 Retro & Aged Films: 1920, Noir, 60s, 70s, Sakura, XPro, Siena, Pela, Indigo, Tuscan, Two-Color and 2-Strip.
• Jitter Button to imitate frame shakes of real projectors.
• Sound Switch to add projector sound for extra authenticity or mute the video for a silent movie effect.

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Bonus… app reveal!

6. Snapchat

I use snapchat for their filters because they’re amazing. Obviously. IG is good at a lot of things but filters it is not. Snapchat has this old TV like filter that I love and use pretty often. It feels like Ady TV haha. I don’t like the dog ears honestly but give me a good crown and I’m happy! Anyways, don’t be afraid to use snapchat. Just record your story which you can do all at once now, save it, cut it up in cut story and upload it to Instagram. It’s more work but sometimes it’s worth it.

I hope these helped! If you have an app you think is amazing that I haven’t tried yet, please drop it in the comments!