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How To React To Messages On Instagram

It’s been more than a year, or since Sep. 29, 2020, to be precise, that Instagram added a feature allowing users to create custom emoji reactions and use them when responding. Yet many aren’t aware of this update, let alone knowing how to react to messages on Instagram.

This was done further to expand Facebook’s cross-platform messaging system to Instagram, a platform Facebook acquired in 2012.

In short, Facebook improved the messaging experience on Instagram by adding many of Messenger’s features to it.

This means that you can message your friends on Facebook from Instagram.

Before this update, Instagram users could only react to DMs by double-tapping on a message and only using the heart emoji.

But now, we can all customize the emojis we use to react to messages on Instagram.

Emoji reactions are well-favored by most of us. Sometimes, an appropriate emoji can convey our message better than words.

We all have these small icons on our cell phone’s keyboards that add a layer of fun and entertainment to our daily online conversations.

The experience of using them on Instagram is even more exciting since the option was released.

Generally, you need to take 4 steps to react to message on Instagram:

  1. Update the app to the latest version
  2. Open one of your conversations
  3. Hold your finger on a DM to see emoji reactions
  4. Select one of the emojis to react

Let’s get more specific about these steps and find out how to react to messages on Instagram.

How to React to Messages on Instagram in 4 Steps

As you already know, it’s pretty easy to use emojis to react to messages on Instagram.

Now it’s time to talk about the details of each step and show you how they’re done.

Remember all of the four steps are actionable on Instagram’s mobile app and not on other versions.

Update Instagram

The first step is by far the most basic one, however no less important.

No matter what you want to do on Instagram, it’s best to make sure you’re using the latest version.

Besides the inclusion of new features, these updates often include security and stability improvements as well.

This is why you need to update the app regularly to not miss out on any features or improvements.

To update Instagram, all you need to do is visit Google Play Store (or App Store if you’re an iPhone user) and type ‘Instagram’ into the search bar. Now check and see whether any updates are available.

Note: after updating Instagram, go to the app ‘Settings’ and select ‘Update Messaging’ to run this feature on your phone.

Open a Conversation on the App

Second, launch the application on your cell phone and log in in case you haven’t already.

Now go to one of your chats. You can do this by tapping on the mail icon on the top-right side of the screen.

Bring Up Emoji Reactions

Once you’ve opened a conversation, you can start reacting to any of the DMs with emojis.

To do this, double-tap on a DM to react to it. By default, you can react to direct messages on Instagram with the heart emoji.

However, if you press and hold a message, an emoji list will appear from which you can choose the one you want.

Note: since Instagram DMs have been merged with FB Messenger, you’ll only see this feature if you’ve already connected your Facebook account. Simply go to the Instagram app ‘Settings’ and select ‘Accounts Center’ to link your FB account.

How to Change the Default Heart Emoji

You’re probably curious to know whether it’s possible to change the default heart emoji to something else.

To change the heart emoji used when double-tapping on a DM:

  • Hold your finger on a DM
  • From the set of emojis that appears, tap and hold on the heart emoji
  • Choose the emoji you want
  • Press done

Note: if you cannot see this list, this Instagram feature isn’t available in your country of residence. Sadly, there’s nothing else you can do to access it.

React to an Instagram Message with an Emoji

Finally, as we said earlier, from the set of emojis Instagram has included, you can choose one to react to a DM.

Easy peasy, right? You just have to press and hold a DM to bring up the emojis list and use one as you wish.

Note: if you react to a direct message with the wrong emoji, you can simply remove it. This time you need to tap and hold the emoji you used and select ‘Tap to remove’.

But what if you want to change the whole set? Would that be possible? Of course!

How to Customize Instagram Emoji Reactions

Many emojis are available on our cell phone’s keyboards, but we rarely use more than 20 of them.

The same goes with using them on Instagram to react to messages.

So that’s why you should customize your emoji reactions to save yourself from searching for them every time.

To personalize Instagram emoji reactions list:

  • Tap and hold on a DM
  • From the emoji list that pops on your screen, tap on the plus ‘+’ icon
  • Add emoji and customize the list as you prefer

How to React to Messages on Instagram PC

Perhaps you’re one of those people who prefers to send DMs on Instagram on PC or Mac.

If you are, then we have bad news for you.

Unfortunately, you can’t use custom emojis to react to DMs on Instagram for Windows or Instagram web.

The only one available on these two versions is the heart emoji which you can double-click on a DM to use it. You can easily remove it by left-clicking on the heart icon below a direct message and choosing ‘Select to remove’.

Bottom Line

Using emojis makes it easier to communicate with other people. They bring a new level of excitement to our online experience.

Sometimes it’s either difficult or time-consuming to express how we feel with words.

But in such situations, using one or more emojis can help us accurately convey our feelings.

Thanks to the update we discussed earlier, using emojis to react to messages on Instagram has become a lot easier.

We can create a custom emoji list and react to DMs with the emojis we like. This allows us to enjoy our daily conversations on the platform more than ever.

So if you have access to this feature, why don’t you go ahead and test it?