Demo Videos for Instagram Effects

Demo videos show a preview of an effect to someone, giving them a flavor of what it will look like before they open it in the camera.

If you're uploading an effect to Instagram, you'll now need to upload a demo video too. They'll show up in the Instagram app soon.

You can also upload demo videos for past effects, to give them the most exposure possible. If you don't, your effects will still be visible in the Instagram camera, but won't appear anywhere that demo videos are displayed.

This guide covers:

Demo Video Requirements

If publishing a new effect, your demo video will be reviewed at the same time as your effect. Demo videos added to existing effects will be reviewed when submitted.

Your video must meet the Spark AR terms and accurately represent your effect as it's being used in the Instagram camera.

It should also be:

  1. Captured in the Instagram camera.
  2. Recorded in portrait (vertical) orientation.
  3. Unedited (no text overlays, for example).
  4. Be a maximum of 15 seconds long.
  5. Be a maximum of 32MB in size.
  6. Uploaded as a MOV or MP4 file.

Demo Video Recommendations

Your demo video is a great opportunity to showcase your effect, and encourage people to open it in the camera.

Follow these recommendations to make the best video possible:

  1. Keep your video short and to the point.
  2. Focus on showcasing the capabilities and elements featured in your effect.
  3. Shoot your video in a brightly lit environment.
  4. Avoid shooting your video on a busy or detailed background.
  5. If you include audio in your recording, remember people will be able to hear this if they have the sound on.


Here's an example of a demo video that follows our recommendations and requirements:

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How to Capture your Video

You'll need to record the video in the Instagram camera. You can see your effect in the Instagram camera, and capture your video, when you're publishing an effect. You can also do this from the effect's test page.

Whether you're publishing a new effect or on the effect's test page, either:

  • Select Show in Instagram - to preview the effect on your phone.
  • Select Copy Link - to get a link to a preview of your effect.

To capture the video:

  1. Hold the capture button - this will record your video.
  2. If you want to disable sound, tap the sound icon after you've finished recording your video.
  3. Tap the download icon - the clip will be saved to your device.

Before submitting the video, you can crop the length if you need to. Otherwise, it shouldn't be edited.

How to Upload your Video

If you're publishing a new effect, you'll be asked to upload your video file when you're uploading your effect in Spark Hub. You'll see this option in the Discovery section.

To add a video to an existing effect:

  1. Go to Spark Hub.
  2. Click on the effect.
  3. Click Effect Details.
  4. Upload the video.

Once the video has been uploaded, you'll be able to see and play it.

You can also replace demo videos for effects that have already been published. Any new videos will be reviewed. The old video will be shown until the new video has been approved.

Choosing a video thumbnail image

Once you've uploaded your video, you'll need to select a thumbnail image. This image represents the video, before someone plays it.

You'll see a selection of thumbnails, taken from your video automatically. Select the one you like best.