With “roughly one billion” monthly active users, Instagram boasts one of the largest platforms on the planet.
The app has had us hooked from the moment it launched as a photo-sharing platform in October 2010. Over the decade since, it has evolved into many things: a place to connect with old friends, or new lovers; a portfolio for creatives; a battleground for social justice; an online shopping portal; a hornet’s nest of misinformation; a mirror into what we care about, carefully vetted and fed back to us by the all-seeing Algorithm™.
The rich and famous have used Instagram to further (and hinder) their own careers, giving followers a glimpse into their lives, their views, their plans and more — life-casting in nearly real-time for audiences of millions awaiting their every move. Whether that’s thrilling or frightening is in the eye of the beholder. Either way, the rest of us can’t seem to get enough.
Most followed Instagram accounts in the world, as of June 2022
1. Instagram (@instagram). Followers: 516M
Yes, the official handle of Instagram itself comes out tops among the most-followed accounts on the platform, boasting over 500 million followers going into mid-2022. Of its 7,000-plus posts, the most recent feature a spectrum of the platform’s popular, creative or what it deems attention-worthy creators, such as “casually cute tomboy” Shy (@sl33zyskiz) above, actress Rachel Zegler, Insta-famous mini-pig Pua or Lisa of BLACKPINK herself.
2. Cristiano Ronaldo (@cristiano). Followers: 451M
Cristiano Ronaldo has had a great couple of years. Since making his grand comeback to Manchester United, Ronaldo’s star (and following) have both continued to rise. He is the most followed human on Instagram, and is steadily climbing to the 500-million mark.
3. Kylie Jenner (@kyliejenner). Followers: 345M
Jenner, who is the brain behind Kylie Cosmetics, Kylie Skin, Kylie Swim, Kylie Baby and more, was included in Forbes 30 Under 30 —Hall of Fame, 2022. Jenner is the first woman to break 300 million followers on Instagram. She’s also still the most-followed woman in the world, so don’t get too comfortable, Ronaldo. The race to 500 million is on.
4. Lionel Messi (@leomessi). Followers: 335M
Another entry in football’s G.O.A.T. conversation, one of Ronaldo’s biggest rivals in the football happens to be one of CR7’s biggest on the ‘Gram, as well. The Argentine forward has proven himself quite adept at the social media game, going neck-and-neck with Kylie Jenner for the #3 spot for quite some time.
5. Selena Gomez (@selenagomez). Followers: 325M
Gomez’s feed is an interesting mix of notes about her human rights activism, beauty brand Rare, her work in film and music, a creative side (such as her many beautiful shoot images), and the many things she’s so passionate about. She’s also been using her platform to talk about mental health, citing her own ups and downs and encouraging followers to educate themselves on the importance of mental fitness.
6. Dwayne Johnson (@therock). Followers: 320M
In another neck-and-neck battle for Instagram dominance, The People’s Champ and Ariana Grande continue battling it out for the 5th most-followed spot, seemingly changing positions every few weeks or so. Currently, it goes to Hollywood movie star, tequila mogul, future presidential candidate (?) and former WWE champion, better known as The Rock. He has built his ever-increasing following with a candid look into his life and by offering an endless supply of workout and lifestyle motivation.
7. Kim Kardashian (@kimkardashian). Followers: 316M
Despite being one of the most famous faces in the world, Kim has only grown more interesting in her post-Kanye West life, and it’s no surprise to see Kim Kardashian in the top ten. While Keeping Up with the Kardashians may have bid farewell after 20 seasons, Kim continues to stay in the headlines, with no sign of slowing down. And with The Kardashians, a new Kardashian-Jenner show on Hulu, we’ll still be seeing plenty of Kim for a long time to come.
8. Ariana Grande (@arianagrande). Followers: 315M
Who doesn’t want to follow Ariana Grande? The Grammy-winning singer has had an eventful few years that have kept people paying attention. Grande became the most followed musician on the platform in 2019 and continues to be so. With a feed filled with teasers of what’s to come (and the occasional look back at what got her there), she doesn’t appear to be giving up that title any time soon.
9. Beyoncé (@beyonce). Followers: 261M
Still flawless after all this time, there will only ever be one Beyoncé. The singer-actress-songwriter-producer-dancer-businesswoman-director-and-more changed the way artists release albums forever with Lemonade. Queen Bey has found a way to toe the line between larger-than-life superstardom while still giving us the occasional intimate glimpse into her and her family’s world through social media.
10. Khloé Kardashian (@khloekardashian). Followers: 249M
Khloé takes the 10th spot to become the third Kardashian-Jenner on the list of most-followed Instagram accounts in the world. However, she has to defend her spot from a rapidly climbing Kendall, who has over 241 million followers.
(Hero and featured image credits: @beyonce & @arianagrade via Instagram)
This article was first published on Lifestyle Asia Hong Kong.