Is VSCO Better Than Instagram? Explained in Detail

VSCO vs Instagram

Why do people use VSCO over Instagram? Which is better- VSCO or Instagram? These questions have been plaguing a certain section of the internet community for a long time. Two apps launched in a time frame of 2-3 years and both meant for sharing photos and videos are bound to draw comparisons.

However, we would like to point out that there are considerable differences between the two platforms. You need to know the difference between VSCO and Instagram to decide which is better for you. Let us discuss these differences in detail to understand whether VSCO is a good social media and whether it is better than Instagram or not.

What is Instagram?

Instagram is a social networking platform for sharing photos and videos and now reels as well. You can upload photos, videos, and reels after editing them with filters. The media shared on the platform can also be tagged with geographical locations and organized by hashtags. 

Instagram posts can be shared publicly or only with preapproved followers on private accounts. You can follow people to get a personalized content feed and also like and comment on photos. 

Over the past few years, Instagram has emerged as the social media app. It has over a billion registered users and is highly popular among the younger generations. A number of internet trends emerge from here and it is the preferred platform for engagement between creators and their fans.

What is VSCO Used For?

VSCO is a photography app for Android and iOS devices. However, it can also be used on PCs and laptops via its website. The platform allows users to create one-of-a-kind photos using its suite of advanced editing tools and preset filters.

Unlike Instagram, the social networking aspect of VSCO is limited as it operates on a vibes-above-all philosophy. It largely targets photography enthusiasts who want to edit their pictures in peace, share their work and view other people’s collections.

The photos here can be organized with hashtags, posted with captions or shared on other social media platforms.

Difference Between VSCO and Instagram


Instagram is a completely free platform supported by ad revenue. It does not have any paid premium tier that will unlock additional benefits or filters for you. You only need to be over 13 years of age to create an Instagram account. Other than that, you don’t need to spend a penny to use it.

VSCO, meanwhile, has both free and paid versions. The free tier offers basic editing tools and filters but is otherwise limited in scope. Most of the features are locked behind subscription so you would need to cough up $29.99/year for the Plus tier or $59.99/year for the Pro tier.


As we said before, Instagram is the most popular photo editing app and the most famous social networking service. Its reach is insane and there are people who have received their fair share of fame by posting their content on the app. “Instagram popular” is truly a thing.

VSCO is a more niche app that is not concerned about the social networking aspect. Follower count, likes, comments, and post engagement don’t have as much importance here as on Instagram. 

This makes for an overall chill experience but also means that you won’t get much mainstream exposure by posting just on VSCO.

Earning Opportunities

Instagram presents more earning opportunities than VSCO. Big Instagram influencers earn quite a lot with sponsorships and brand collaborations. Even apart from that, many people are running small businesses in various domains through Instagram.

You can cut out the middleman and directly engage with the customers with it. However, VSCO barely has any earning opportunities like this because neither does its algorithm work like that nor does it have that kind of reach.

Target Audience

There are no restrictions to using Instagram but the majority of its user base consists of young adults aged between 18-24. It is a place to share aesthetic photos and videos but now it is becoming more and more popular for reels. 

Thus, Instagram is a platform that targets casual photography enthusiasts and people who may want to share snippets of their lives and connect with others.

VSCO’s search focuses more on the photography aspect of the platform and its target audience is professional photographers or people who are serious about improving their craft. Of course, there might be overlap but fundamentally the target audience of VSCO and Instagram is different.


Instagram has about 50 or so preset filters as of 2024. It had about 25 filters in 2022 but several new ones were added in 2023 to improve on its creative tools suite. The majority of the filters don’t do anything dramatic and just switch up the color and tone of the image to get the desired aesthetic.

As a platform aimed at photographers, VSCO has a wide variety of preset filters that can turn a generic picture into a unique and memorable piece. As compared to Instagram’s 50 filters, VSCO Plus gives you access to 200+ presets. In the Pro tier, you can even customize the presets.

Editing Tools

Instagram has basic editing tools like ‘crop’, ‘scale’, and ‘rotate’. It also has some more fun ones like ‘wide angle’ and ‘wavy.’ As per reports, it is also testing the ability to create custom stickers from the photos and videos in the user’s camera roll or other Instagram photos.

However, Instagram does not hold a candle to VSCO when it comes to photo editing tools. Here, you can play around with saturation, white balance, special effects, and texture to create something that perfectly reflects your vision.

Which is Better- VSCO or Instagram?

The Instagram vs. VSCO debate has been going on for a long time. Both are apps to edit and upload photos! They let you follow other people too! So, which one is better?

Turns out, there is no definitive answer to this question. This is because the way Instagram and VSCO function and their target user base is quite different. Someone who just wants to connect with people, share moments from their life, or browse content related to their interests would find Instagram better.

VSCO is targeted more towards people who are deeply into photography and want a space with excellent tools to edit their raw content. It is for people who want more control over their photo editing and a more laid-back experience without the pressure of likes and engagement.

To know more read our VSCO detailed review

Of course, these things are not mutually exclusive and people edit photos on VSCO and upload them on Instagram all the time. Yet there are enough differences in their approaches and as they serve different needs for different people, we feel it is not apt to compare them and declare one better than the other.

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Brahmleen Kaur

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