Last Updated on February 5, 2023 by James McAllister

By: James McAllister


There may come a time when you’ve found someone you want to unfollow on Instagram.

It could be that you’re simply no longer friends with them, or they’re filling your feed with posts you just don’t care about. Either way, you may find yourself wanting to unfollow them without hurting their feelings, or suffering from any sort of retaliation.

Therefore, you may be wondering – is it possible to unfollow someone on Instagram secretly, without them knowing?

In this article, we’ll cover everything that you need to know!

Do People Know When You Unfollow Them On Instagram? Do They Receive A Notification?

Currently, there is no way for people to know that you’ve unfollowed them on Instagram without them specifically checking.

Instagram does not send any sort of notification when someone unfollows them, and they have no way of knowing which accounts were actually the ones that unfollowed.

Instagram does not provide any sort of lists of unfollowers. Therefore, even if you were to unfollow someone, it’s likely that they’ll have no idea it was you.

So, if you want to unfollow someone, you should feel free to do it without worry!

How Can They Find Out If You Unfollowed Them?

Instagram App

Unfortunately, despite the fact that Instagram will not send any sort of notification, it’s still possible for them to discover that you unfollowed them. While they’d have to specifically go looking, it’s still a possibility.

First of all, if they check your profile and view your ‘Following’ list, they will be able to immediately see that they are no longer there. Instagram will always show yourself first if you view someone else’s following list and they’re following you, so this will immediately alert them that you are no longer following your account.

Of course, most people don’t check this sort of thing regularly. However, if you have a history of engaging with their posts or Instagram Stories (such as liking or commenting on them), they may realize if you’ve stopped and go to investigate.

So, if you’re worried this may alert them, you should taper down your engagement slowly before unfollowing.

Additionally, it’s also possible that they may be using a tool that specifically tracks unfollowers. While Instagram has gotten more restrictive with what kind of tools they allow, there may still be software out there that can track unfollows. While these tools are mostly used by businesses, if the person is using one of these they will be able to know you unfollowed them, and perhaps even the exact time this occurred.

Don’t Be Afraid To Block Someone

If you’re worried about stalking or harassment, do not be afraid to block someone after unfollowing them.

If you block someone, they will have no way of knowing whether you actually unfollowed them on purpose, or whether your Instagram account was banned or deleted.

While they could always find out by making a second account and trying to search for your profile, most people won’t go to that much trouble.

Likewise, if you happen to feel unsafe please contact your local law enforcement agency for assistance.

Note: Even if someone discovers you’ve unfollowed them, you can always blame it on a glitch. Instagram also has a button that makes it easy for people to remove their own followers by mistake, so you can always use this as an excuse as well.

If You Follow Them Back Straight Away, Will Instagram Still Send A Notification?

Let’s say you unfollowed someone (either on purpose or by accident), and you followed them back straight away. Will Instagram still send a push notification to their phone?

The answer is yes. Despite how quickly you may follow someone back after unfollowing them, Instagram will still send a notification to their phone stating that you followed them.

Of course, you can always let the person know that you unfollowed them by mistake for a moment, and this will clear up any misunderstandings.


Currently, Instagram does not send any sort of notification when someone unfollows you. Therefore, most people will never know if you unfollow them or not.

However, if someone is determined there are several ways they can find out.

I hope that you’ve found this article helpful. If you have any other questions about Instagram, please ask them using the comment form below.

Wishing you the best,

– James McAllister

About the author 

James McAllister

James is the owner of He started his first blog at the age of 11, and has since gone on to start several successful businesses. In total, these businesses have sold hundreds of thousands of units and have touched millions of lives. Here on, he shares his knowledge that brought him to where he is today. If you want to connect with James, follow him on your favorite social networks!

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