How Long Can Instagram Reels Be – Best Length to Get Views

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Instagram reels are the content form that was Instagram’s answer to the ever-rising TikTok, and just like videos on there, reels started as 15-second-long videos.

However, as TikTok changed its rules, Instagram reel length has changed following the newest update.

How long can Instagram Reels be?

Since the newest Instagram update, Instagram reels can be up to 90 seconds long. But to get the most views and shares, it’s best to keep the reels up to 15-18 seconds long.

So, let’s see what else has changed with the newest update!

How Long Can Instagram Reels Be?

As of now, Instagram reels can be up to 90 seconds long.

At first, Instagram reel length could only be as long as 15 seconds long, similarly to how TikTok worked.

Long Instagram reels are something that everyone was excited about, as 15 seconds just weren’t enough for Instagram users to say what they wanted to share on social media.

This reel feature changed the default time limit and therefore opened a lot of options for creators to work with their imagination both on these short videos and behind the scenes.

Just a bit down below, you will find out why exactly this matters and how you can make the most of it, so let’s keep going!

Instagram reels icon

The New Update Regarding Instagram Reels

As already mentioned, the newest Instagram update regarding reels is about being able to post reels that are 90 seconds long rather than just 15.

However, there’s more to the update than just the longer reels.

First of all, creators are now going to be able to add stickers to their reels, a feature that was previously reserved only for Instagram stories.

Add a Sticker feature for Instagram Reels

The great thing about this is that you are getting more options to engage your audience in your content, and engagement is the most important thing that the Instagram algorithm takes note of.

For example, people are able to add poll stickers to their reels, and voting for these is always fun for the audience.

Another creator-based update that comes with this is the ability to add audio directly from your phone files to the reels.

Before this, you were only able to use audios that were already trending on the app, but now, the original audio is also an option.

This means that when you publish content, you have way more options to play with and overall total control of what you make.

It’s also very easy to do it; in the section for creating reels, you now have an additional menu where you import your own sounds.

Importance of Reels Length

While reels are the content type that exists because of the rise in popularity of short-form content, having a longer maximum length for them is a very important update.

When you have more time on your hands without such a restrictive time limit added to it, you have way more room to say what you want and create a piece of content that truly represents who you are.

A lot of creators found it very restricting and hard that they had to work in only 15-second intervals, mainly because they felt unable to share what they wanted with their viewers and more people in general.

This situation commonly resulted in people posting several reels, one after the other, as a part of a series.

Most people expected to get 60 seconds for long Instagram reels, but as it ended up being 90, even more opportunities for high-quality long reels opened.

While Instagram reels can never overthrow YouTube, this option gave people the opportunity to make a bit longer videos that they might have gone to YouTube for.

This way, Instagram has a bit more of a monopoly in social media, as it gets pretty practical to simply do everything inside one app.

When you have more options to post, you also have more opportunities to add different hashtags and partake in different trees, making it more probable that you will actually blow up and reach your target audience.

This is the reason why social media managers love recommending that you should select reels as your main form of content.

It also helps that there was an update to Instagram stories, and now they aren’t restricted to only 15 seconds; they can last a lot longer, actually, as long as the reel you’re sharing is long.

This, again, means more opportunities for marketing as you can share your full reel on your Insta story.

And, if you add music that’s your own, the options are basically endless.

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How Long Should the Instagram Reel Be for the Best Engagement?

The answer to this question mainly depends on what you want to achieve with your reels.

Here is how different kinds of reels work with the new length update:

Getting More Views

If your main goal is to get as many views as you can, then the best option for you would be to make it really short and simple, so stay within the 3 to 15-second range, as that attracts the most views.

If your content is not too serious, if you only want to make people laugh and watch it in its entirety, this is for you.

Having More Shares

If you have some kind of a message that you need to share with broad audiences, then that type of reel should be up to 18 seconds long, as it takes a bit more time to explain what you have, but it’s still simple enough that you get the ability to be shared and heard across the social media platform.

Basically, the way you do this is to keep the main part of the content 15 seconds long but have an additional 3-second period where you will specify that this message should be shared.

Reaching More Comments

Comments are a great way to get your engagement up, and one of the best ways to do that, besides having as many people watch the reel at its full length, is to have comments.

If you want to engage people in a conversation, the best time frame is to keep it around 20 seconds long, as that can be long enough to intrigue them and inspire them to say something about it but still not so long that they end up forgetting what their point was.

Starting Conversations

In case your content is in any way educational or informational, then this update in the reels area of Instagram is made exactly for you.

A lot of topics require more details and nuance than anyone could ever manage to fit into a 15-second interval, as a lot of things end up needing to be left out.

If your content is anything of the sort, you can do anything between 30 and 90 seconds, with 60 seconds being the absolute golden middle in this situation.

People will gain a fuller understanding of what the topic is and also be able to form some opinions that they will inevitably share in the comments with you, as well.

As you can see, the answer to this question varies, so make sure that when you open Instagram and start planning your content, you’re aware of what you want.

Only after that consideration will you be able to create a reel on Instagram that will get to the audience it’s meant for and be met with positive feedback.

Besides the length of the reels, one additional thing that you should consider when planning your content is what’s the best time to post on Instagram.

Again, this one can depend on different factors, so be sure to check it out and figure out what will work for you and your content in particular, as the time when something’s posted can have quite an impact.


Instagram reels are the main content form on this app nowadays, and recently, there have been a lot of updates that are intended to improve reels.

The main one is that reels can now be as long as 90 seconds, meaning that you will have way more space to try out different things for your content and reach wider audiences.

Besides that, you are now also able to add your own audio directly from your phone files, as well as add stickers that were previously reserved only for stories.

You should make the most of these updates, as they are made mainly to improve what content creators can do and achieve even more engagement.


Can reels be 90 seconds?

After the most recent Instagram update, reels can be up to 90 seconds long, making this a very big improvement, as previously you could’ve made only 15-second long videos.

Can reels be longer than 60 seconds?

Yes, reels can be longer than 60 seconds.

To be precise, they can be up to 90 seconds long after the newest Instagram update, which is actually the biggest update ever for creators that mainly focus on creating reels.

How do you make your reels longer on Instagram?

When you open the section for making reels, you will see on the left side an icon with the number 15 in the middle.

You tap on that and simply choose the number that represents how long you want your reel to be.

How do you make a 3-minute reel?

Instagram reels can have a maximum length of 90 seconds, so it’s not possible to make a reel be 3 minutes long.

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Mell is one of the Stream Mentor's co-founders and a versatile content writer. She's helping other streamers get their visuals right, set the right panel, use the right lighting, install overlays properly and boost the stream quality to a great extent.

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