Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the lights on at MakeUseOf. Read more.
If you find yourself spending too much time on Instagram, and want to follow only a select few user accounts or hashtags without going down the Instagram rabbit hole, you might want to take your Instagram viewing into an RSS reader instead.
Since Instagram itself doesn’t make it possible to get the RSS feed for a hashtag or user, you can use a third party service to get that RSS feed.
The easiest way to do this is to create a list of Instagram hashtags and usernames you want to follow in your RSS reader. You can then use one of several third-party Instagram websites to create an RSS link.
Websta.me [No Longer Available]
Wesbta.me offers the cleanest rendering of the posts. The title of the RSS post is the account username while the caption will be included in the post itself, and it allows you to subscribe to hashtags and Instagram users.
- You can create an RSS URL for an Instagram user with the following link format: https://websta.me/rss/n/USERNAME
- You can create an RSS URL for a hashtag with the following link format: https://websta.me/rss/tag/HASHTAG
QueryFeed posts in your RSS feed are a little messier, but in addition to subscribing to hashtags and users, you can limit search results geographically.
QueryFeed also sets itself apart by providing a lot more posts per RSS feed when you first subscribe.
- You can create an RSS URL for an Instagram user with the following link format: https://queryfeed.net/instagram?q=USERNAME
- You can create an RSS URL for a hashtag with the following link format: https://queryfeed.net/instagram?q=%HASHTAG
- You can create 5 free RSS URLs per month using FetchRSS. Just paste the link to a page with hashtag results or the link to an Instagram profile to generate the RSS feed.
Once you settle on the method of your choice, just subscribe to the feed in the RSS reader of your choice as you would subscribe to any other feed.
The disadvantage to following Instagram RSS feeds as opposed to following in the app directly is that you won’t get immediate updates. When you first subscribe, you’ll get around ten or less recent posts and then you’ll have to wait a bit until the feed refreshes.
Instagram isn’t the only social site you can take into your RSS reader. You can also keep up with your YouTube subscriptions using RSS. If you use an RSS reader like Inoreader, you’ll then be able to star posts you want to come back to, easily share the posts elsewhere, and of course, view the original post.