Every new Instagram feature makes the news—an especially big splash if it’s lifted from Snapchat. But the new Instagram feature that’s giving me life isn’t one that approximates Snapchat, but one that’s more of a low-key Pinterest. Yep, I’m talking about “Collections.”
When Instagram added a save-for-later/”bookmark” feature, it was already a good way to differentiate stuff you liked because-you-had-to-because-you’re-a-good-friend from stuff that, well, you might actually want to look at again. The newer “Collections” feature lets you group saved posts into categories that you can name yourself.
While I’m susceptible as any to feelings of envy and covetousness while scrolling through Instagram (even when knowing fully well how curated everything is), I’ve been finding the collections feature helpful in turning Instagram-browsing into a productive, proactive exercise. In this frame of mind, other people’s beautiful lives become less of things I don’t have and more of things I desire and can work on bringing into my life.
Whether it’s a book, a pair of shoes, a new restaurant, travel destination, or golden retriever GIF for the record books, my Instagram feed offers so much to admire and appreciate.
This weekend, I was looking for a cute place to meet my friend Maggie and immediately turned to my “To Do” collection on Instagram. I’d remembered saving a girlfriend-hangout-friendly place at some point and voilà, it was in West Village.
The place was a dream, as far as pretty decor and hip ambiance are concerned. The food (I got my first avocado toast ever) was just okay. As it turns out, this was a good example of both the usefulness of Instagram and its limitations. Instagram helped me find a cool new spot that was 110 percent Instagrammable…but Instagrammable doesn’t always mean best tasting/value/quality/etc. IRL.
But! There’s never harm in trying new things, right? Otherwise, I wouldn’t have discovered that they give out mini Haribo with your bill. Kind of amazing.
All photos by me