Whether you’re using Instagram for recreational purposes or for business, it’s an incredibly powerful tool. Not only is it free, but millions of people can be reached in real time from the comfort of your couch. With the rise of influencer marketing, the content you’re posting and how well it’s received can turn your day-to-days into something that can be monetized. Unique content, pretty photos, and clever captions all contribute to how big your Instagram can grow.

If you’re using Instagram for personal use or as an influencer/business to build your brand, there are about a million ways to thrive. While there are certainly no set rules on how to win at social media, there are several unwritten do’s and don’ts that most people understand. Most. Like with most things in life though, there always seem to be those people that just seem to have missed the memo.

How many selfies are too many? How many photos can I post a day without being annoying? What number of pictures of my cat per week is an acceptable amount? None. The answer to that is none.

When it comes to Instagram captions, it seems as if the aforementioned memo was lost for a lot of people. While we’re certainly in no position to tell you what to do, we’re here to share with you the most eyeroll-inducing captions you can use. The rest is up to you.

  1. Inspirational quotes for selfies

I’m not against selfies. If you have photos of yourself (regardless of how pointless) that you love and that you want to share sporadically, go wild. My issue is when you pair that selfie with an inspirational quote that is there to distract from the fact that the photo has no real point. I’d rather a caption that reads “Pointless Selfay” than one that reads “I am not what has happened to me. I am what I choose to become.” Just don’t. You’re not fooling anyone- you just like the way your boobs look. People appreciate realness.

  1. Lame quotes for “candid” photos

The word candid is in quotations marks because, let’s be honest here, most of the time it’s not actually candid. A common Instagram offense is adding a lame quote about happiness or love below a photo of you laughing or smiling. First of all, we know you know that the photo was being taken. Secondly, captioning the photo with something vague and cliched is uninteresting and basic. I like to laugh- tell me what you’re (pretending to) laugh at. Or better yet, let’s call a spade a spade and just acknowledge how “candid” it really is.

  1. A caption of hashtags

Captions are tough. My picture posting is sometimes delayed because I don’t have the right caption. One thing you should never, ever do though is to just use hashtags as your caption. A few carefully chosen hashtags are fine at the end of a caption, but if all you’ve got is #nofilter #likeforlike #instacool #love #fun, you’re better off just picking an emoji and leaving it at that.

  1. Cliche Instagram captions

New year new me. Not all who wander are lost. It’s a [blank] kind of day. LIVE LAUGH LOVE. No, no, no, no.

  1. Part 1, 2, and 3 captions

We’ve all been there. We have a good hair day or face day or butt day and you have more than one photo to post. While you should be using the new album feature, you might want to post a few separate photos that are achingly similar. If you absolutely must do this, please, PLEASE do not caption it Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, etc… If I have to look at variations of the same photo, at least give me something interesting to read.

  1. Captions addressed to a specific person

If you want to send a personal message to someone- send a personal message to them. You can call them, text them, email them, DM them, send a letter, etc… Unless you’re trying to shout them out publicly for doing something special, try to limit the amount of long, gushy, lovy captions addressed to one specific person. This is especially true if you’re an influencer or someone trying to grow their following.

Even worse than this is shouting someone out who doesn’t have Instagram. That novel of a caption you wrote for you dad for Father’s Day would be great if he had Instagram. But he doesn’t. Send him an e-card.

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