Instagram etiquette at Christmas: how to avoid those social media no-nos.

At last, it is Christmas. You’ve decked the halls. You’ve stuffed the turkey. You’ve wrapped for Great Britain. You are rightly proud of your handiwork. You are also off work, free of your normal routine and possibly even away from home.

It is under exactly these circumstances that things can go wrong on the social media front. Without the constraints of ordinary life, with all that extra time on their hands and with Champagne and red wine flowing through their veins, normally sane Instagrammers too often fall foul of a vast minefield at Christmas.

Here at The Good Web Guide, we don’t want you to irritate your painstakingly amassed followers so badly that they unfollow you. We don’t want any carping ill will directed towards your feed. We don’t want you to regret your yuletide vigour.

So, in order to protect yourself, we refer you now to our guide to Instagram etiquette at Christmas.


DO use Insta instead of a Christmas card to express your season’s greetings (and the fact that you find sending handwritten cards a bridge too far).

DO post a snap of your family in Christmas jumpers – as long as it is genuinely ironic and not at all smug or pretty.

DO post your high street bedecked in Christmas lights – providing you are a halfway decent photographer and the shot looks as enchanting and romantic as you mean it to.

DO post a super-chic lifestyle shot of your carefully curated wrapping kit laid out in front of you – but bear in mind that, according to Vogue magazine, pictures that include faces get 38 per cent more likes than those without.


DO NOT post pictures of you exercising on Christmas Day. December 25 is about peace and goodwill to all men – please don’t make us feel bad about ourselves. Not today.

DO NOT post pictures of your Christmas lunch – unless you are Jamie Oliver or a food stylist. After all, your Christmas lunch is just like everybody else’s, is it not?

DO NOT post pictures of a big old stack of presents that you’ve been given, with a view to denoting quantity. That’s just childish.

DO NOT be glued to your phone all day on the big day. If you look up from your device occasionally, you might well find that all those people you’ve been avoiding all year actually have something interesting to say.

DO NOT over-post. This is the golden rule – at this time of year and always. Nobody wants to see multiple shots of the same thing. Ever. Neither do they want to see several posts from you in one day. Self-absorption is so not festive.

Updated December 2018