Skip to main content

How to upload a non-square photo to Instagram with Windows Phone

Sometimes the best Instagram photo isn't square. However, the popular photo-sharing service forces users to upload images in square aspect ratio. There are workarounds, and we'll show you the best way to do it on your Windows Phone. We'll use the popular third-party Instagram app, 6tag. Follow our step by step instructions and/or watch the how-to video.

The best way to upload a photo to Instagram that isn't square with 6tag

What 6tag is basically doing is adding white bars above and below the image to make it look rectangle.

  1. Open your Windows Phone camera roll and tap the image you want to upload
  2. Tap the edit button at the bottom and select crop, rotate, auto-fix.
  3. Tap the crop button at the bottom.
  4. You can crop the image to whatever you like, but we recommend using a narrower aspect ratio. Tap the aspect ratio at the bottom and select one. 4x3 is a good place to start.
  5. Drag the corners to crop the image to your liking and then tap done.
  6. Tap save and then share it to 6tag.
  7. Tap auto fit and then the check button. We recommend using the default white bars instead of black.
  8. We recommend uploading the image without any filters. Doing so can change the color of the white bars and ruin the effect of a rectangle image. If you want to add filters, use a separate image editor like Creative Studio before sending it to 6tag.

Instagram wants you to post square images, but you don't have to follow the rules. Several people on Instagram use workarounds like the one mentioned above to give the illusion of non-square images. For example, most of the images that DarkBeautyMag share on Instagram aren't square. Take a look!

Do you like non-square images on Instagram? Are you going to start uploading non-square images? Sound off in the comments.

Mark Guim is Video Editor at Windows Central. He switched to Windows because the MacBook Pro isn't Pro enough. You can follow him on Twitter at @markguim.

82 Comments
  • Square is the worst
  • Yes, people aren't square (MS phrase)
  • Btw wpcentral followed me on instagram today. My username is Lumia_lover
  • No cookie for you.
  • Wpcentral is my username..don't feel lucky already :D
  • Owned.
  • Lier
  • Or you can just go into camera settings and select 4x3 aspect ratio as the default ratio for clicking all photos and that to in full resolution.
  • Square is evil
  • Squares are THE WORST EVER!
  • Microsoft is all about squares these days. -_-
  • Profile picures will be circles in Windows 10
  • if square wasn't bad enough
  • yeah. then you have to think out of the box.  
  • I just use Instasquarer app :)
  • Yep. Instasquarer has always been great. I think this suggested method might keep the image quality a little higher, though. It's always good to have options (Don't let my girlfriend know I say that. ha).
  • 6tag?
  • Great app. Easy and good quality exports. The dev is good.
  • Insta^2
  • It's not hip to be square
  • "Hey Paul!"
  • "Instagram wants you to post square images, but you don't have to follow the rules"
    Are you basically saying "fuck the police"?
  • Just like pirated Windows. So yeah, the police is being fucked up.
  • Just use instasize app..
  • Why whenever 6tag has it built in?
  • Instasize??  That sounds weird... odd thoughts come into my mind.
  • No square for me .. Except for profile pictures ...
  • Totally agree with you!
  • Black border though (maybe it's worse viewing the white borders on WP/6tag with dark theme).
     
  • Agree that
  • That depends on the image, if it's dark, then black border it is.
  • Heathen!
  • Rudy makes a nice culprit.
  • This aint a new trick!
  • OMFGNoOneCares!
  • If none cared why a post?
  • Do you guys know about sarcasm..?
  • Exactly stands my point Mr. Rubino.
  • Why didn't you post it earlier..? $
  • Is this even possible to do in the actual Instagram app yet?
  • I use Fhotoroom App to post square Images. :)
  • This was a completely unnecessary article.
  • For you...completely unnecessary for YOU. The world, however, is not about just you. Neither is this site.
  • I'll just presume your team was bored.
  • *sigh* people's self-importance is incredible.  I'm sure there are people who have never used 6Tag and stayed attached to the InstaGram Perpetual Beta app.  This might be NEW to them.  There ARE people buying Windows Phones everyday, so this would be NEW to them.   Philisophically speaking @AlastairUNSC - you are correct, this article is "unnecessary" as are most things. Even our existence is "unnecessary".  It's all about perspective.  I take it to mean that you don't think anyone will benefit from the article. In that interpretation, you are patently incorrect.  FYI - you always have the option to scroll on by if the article's topic doesn't pertain to you.  
  • People who have never used 6tag and on WC? Not likely cus if they know about WC, they must've known about 6tag. WC post every update and news regarding 6tag.
  • I have several friends who use Windows Phone and they don't come to Windows Central unless I send them an article that I think pertains directly to them.  There are people who bought a Windows Phone...TODAY.  Your perspective isn't universal. 
  • First, a Windows Phone user will always end up using 6tag because the official beta is utterly horrible. Secondly, what the hell kind of a 6tag user needs specific instructions to upload non-square pictures. You have the 'auto fit' button right next to the 'done' button that adds a border to your picture. It's absolutely obvious.
  • First, you're wrong. People use the official Instagram.  You know the people who say "I'll never use a 3rd party" and "Oh my gawd, it's raining official".  There are those types. Then there are people who are...wait for it...NEW to Windows Phone who just search the store looking for what they were using before. The only thing that's obvious is that you think what you've done or what you've experienced is known and experienced by everyone on Earth.  Just SKIP the article if the topic offends you so much. Geesh.
  • I don't understand the need of this article or the other companion apps suggested by commenters, since this feature is already available on 6tag when uploading. That little button at the bottom before the caption page. Been using it for years.
  • Because there are people NEW to Windows Phone who want to know their options. You folks really need to think beyond us writing for the core audience.
  • And I don't understand your coming here and whining while you could've just scrolled/swiped to some other topic of 'your' interest.
  • Off topic but 6tag did the video posting update come yet? I thought that I read the update was supposed to come about a week or so ago. Am I missing something?
  • It's gonna come with Windows 10 as 6tag version 5.0.
  • I thought i read that too.
  • L7's all around!
  • Great info...... :)
  • Instagram is a shitty site for sharing photos! Image quality becomes the worst!
  • I recommend using the black border. Also, I've pretty  much switched my picture viewing/sharing to Fhotoroom.  I still put up some pics on IG via 6Tag, but I follow and engage with people on Fhotoroom.  No squares. Hashtags are unimportant. People are generally awesome.
  • Yes. But we have a better experience in Instagram. The dev team of Fotoroom is fabulous, I was there at QA and they were saddened about windows 10 things. Mostly unable to use many features for win 10 due to limitations.
  • Who is "we"? I don't have a better experience with Instagram. They don't update or care about Windows Phone, Windows Mobile, Windows 10 or whatever the name is this week.  The developer of Fhotoroom may not have liked some things, but he's actively updating and I'm sure Fhotoroom will be primed for Win10.  MY experience with Instagram is terrible.  I don't like limitations or squeezing pictures into squares. I don't like the hashtag overload. I don't like feeling like a second-class citizen on my phone. MY experience is infinitely better on Fhotoroom.  WE like it over there. 
  • I use 6tag for all my instagram uploads, which are mostly non-square... Follow me @sekkides :)
  • Would use 6tag more if notifications actually showed up.
  • I always wondered why is instagram obsessed with squares lol.
  • Just download the amazing InstaSquarer, the most powerful and completely free
  • This.
  • I use camera360 .... takes square photos ! Instead of taking the photo then cropping and reframing it, it can be framed while its taken ... thats why camera360 :) so that you dont lose anything ....
  • Black canvas looks much better than white one. It provides better contrast; thus makes a photo looks more immersive. However, the black canvas doesn't match white background of Instagram app.
  • I hate the fact that most apps wont install on windows 10 or even launch
  • I have been
  • I didn't know of this. Thanks!
  • What about a paypal photo
  • This is suppose to be a trick? Wow.. Been there forever
  • Pretty amazing someone actually gets payed to do a video like this, what's next: How to hold your phone with one hand ;)
  • They aren't saying it's new. Some people haven't been using Windows Phone forever like you.
  • I've never been a fan of instagram purely for the fact pictures must be square (despite this workaround) and they are low res and you can't zoom in the photo. I still use it because its used by majority of people but I can't wait for it to die. I think it already is with many people I follow posting less each day.
  • This is why I use 6tag. Too bad the notifications don't work well on 6tag at all. I always get them on my instagram tile first.
  • Nice, must try!
  • Instasquarer is the best method in my opinion.
  • Can you please show me how to turn the volume down on my phone?
  • Square is not good for share in social network
  • Not sure why everyone here has a problem with square photos. I won't follow an account that has borders around all their pics - there's Flickr and 500px for that if you insist. Square photos are different but not any better or worse than landscape. Square photos look better on a mobile feed than a compressed landscape photo - and lets face it, people don't want to rotate their phones everytime they want to see a photo, that will slow down the timeline and ruin the mobile experience. It takes a different frame of mind to compose a good picture in a square, for photographers, it's hard at first but eventually most embrace it.   @jamaalism
    http://www.instagram.com/jamaalism