Instagram is one of the most popular social media networks of all time, and there are plenty of accounts with incredible follower counts to prove it. Boasting over 1 billion monthly active users, Instagram is a great platform to connect with those in your community, target audience, or niche.
Have you ever wondered which of these top accounts have won the title of the most liked Instagram post? What about other most liked Instagram posts? Who holds these accolades, what was the post, and how did they get there?
The top liked Instagram posts have tens of millions of likes. That doesn’t mean every single person who viewed it, liked it— the post itself must have had handfuls of millions of users viewing the content, equating to huge numbers of reach and impressions.
Millions of people were motivated enough to show their appreciation for the post and drop a like. But what defines this motivation? How can Instagram accounts get so much attention?
We’ve done the dirty work and scoped out the top 25 most liked Instagram posts of all time to not only answer your burning questions, but also help you understand what it takes to produce content that people are motivated to interact with.
Most of them are superstars and mega celebrities, so it can be a bit tough to see how you could live up, but don’t worry— even the top Instagram influencers weren’t able to secure a spot above these extremely popular figures.
That said, there’s still a lot we can learn from these celebs, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do.
If you want to get more Instagram likes, comments, shares, and more, this is the post for you.
Here is what we’ve learned about the top 25 most-liked Instagram posts. Let’s check them out!
The 25 Most Liked Instagram Posts of All Time
The following 25 posts are the most liked Instagram posts as of the writing of this post. All of these posts are by names you’ve probably heard before, with a few surprise appearances that surely took the Instagram community by storm.
Once we check out the content and what it was all about, we’ll delve into some of the best practices to help you get your engagement up on Instagram and hopefully get more likes for your own posts.
25. Double Tap to Plant a Tree @tentree
The photo we’re going to start our list of most liked Instagram posts today comes in at number 25, and currently sits at 15,336,497 likes. The post comes from @tentree, a sustainable lifestyle apparel company. Their goal is to plant 1 billion trees by 2030.
They may not be an a-list celebrity, but they certainly took Instagram by storm with their campaign. The campaign struck a chord with millions of users with a photo reading “double tap to plant a tree.”
This is a great call-to-action (CTA) and ultimately motivated so many Instagram users to like the photo because the message and their brand mission was something they could relate to. A strong start to our list— this is exactly the type of thing you need to get your followers taking action!
24. Dalton Gomez and @arianagrande Engagement Announcement
Instagram seems to like heartfelt posts and sentimental sharing sessions, because many of the pieces of content on this list align with those ideas. The first appearance of Ariana Grande on the list is no exception.
Ariana shared the news of her engagement to now-husband Dalton Gomez, showing fun and cute photos of the two along with her ring. We’ll see more from Ariana Grande later, but the consistent aesthetic she showcases on her Instagram is basically art.
This used to be her most-liked photo with 15,646,081 likes, but she beat those with photos from her wedding, which we’ll see later on.
23. Husband and Daughter of @kyliejenner
Kylie Jenner makes her first appearance on the list of the most liked Instagram photos with a carousel post that doesn’t even feature her in the first photo. You can see a fun photo of her daughter’s father, Travis Scott.
The post is meant to give birthday wishes to her daughter Stormi, and it makes complete sense that the post would get so many likes because the internet is a fan of the little girl. Kylie also spotlights Travis Scott, shouting him out as “daddy of the year.”
This is by no means the only photo of Kylie’s with millions of likes, and photos of the couple have gained close numbers of likes as well. This post currently has 15,87,761 likes.
22. @leomessi with Diego Maradona
We’ll come to see that farewell posts often gain a significant amount of likes, and Leo Messi’s farewell to Diego Maradona is no exception. Messi currently has 290 million followers, so it’s not incredibly shocking that his posts get millions of likes.
Put him in the same photo with Diego Maradona and that’s giving soccer fans tons of motivation to double tap. The tribute post after Maradona’s passing gained 16,353,408 likes, just slightly knocked down the list by Jennifer Aniston.
21. Friends Picture from @jenniferaniston, Her First Post on Instagram
Edging out Leo Messi for the 21st spot on the list of most liked Instagram posts, the Friends cast basically broke the internet as each one of them began to post photos together, coming onto Instagram for the first time.
Jennifer Aniston gained the most likes, and was also the first one— she posted a picture of her and her 5 Friends co-stars hanging out together on October 15th, 2019. The internet rejoiced and the photo currently sits at 16,551,926 likes.
Her caption read, “And now we’re Instagram FRIENDS too. HI INSTAGRAM 👋”
20. Photo of @billieeilish with Blonde Hair
Billie Eilish comes onto the list of most liked Instagram posts with a seemingly normal photo— her looking into the camera with her hair up in a very messy bun. While this may seem like nothing new, she posted this just after having changed her hairstyle completely, which is why it was received with such interest.
The photo currently has 18,528,600, increasing just enough to take the 19th spot from Ariana Grande and her husband. Billie posted the simple photo on March 21st of 2021.
19. @arianagrande Wedding Photo with Husband Dalton Gomez
We’ll see more from Ariana Grande later on the list, but here she debuts with the 19th of the most liked Instagram posts. She posted a photo of her in her wedding gown and veil kissing her now-husband Dalton Gomez.
The post was uploaded on May 26th, 2021, but documents a moment from their wedding on March 15th. Because Ariana is such a high-profile celebrity, it’s no shock that her wedding photos captured so much attention from Instagram users.
18. @cristiano Return to Manchester United
Ronaldo’s first appearance on our list of most liked Instagram posts certainly won’t be his last. He comes in at the 18th spot for his debut with 19,090,655 likes on his post announcing his return to Manchester United.
He was well-known for his efforts with Real Madrid over 9 years, later moving to Juventus for a 2-year stint. He rejoined Man U in 2021, and uploaded this post on August 31st, 2021 alongside a lengthy caption about how pleased he is to be back. He first joined Man U in 2003.
17. @khaby00 Keep it Simple
Khaby Lame has become one of the biggest internet sensations, holding the record for the most TikTok followers with over 122 million and a strong 62.3 million on Instagram. His videos average tens of millions of likes and he is followed by numerous celebrities.
Sharing “common sense” content that pokes fun at the ridiculousness that is the internet, Khaby often focuses on the silly things people do and show them the equivalent in real life.
The IG reel he posted on August 14th, 2021, now known as the “keep it simple” reel, has gained 19,091,031 likes and has been viewed over 215 million times. Khaby is exactly the type of content creator the internet never knew it needed!
He recently surpassed Cristiano and swiped the 17th spot on our list.
16. @tomholland2013 Birthday Post to Zendaya
Slightly edging out the previous posts, the photo posted by Tom Holland on September 1st has become one of the biggest photos on Instagram. Gaining 19,267,835 likes, the post features Holland in his Spider Man costume with his now-girlfriend Zendaya snapping the photo behind him.
This picture was meant to share birthday wishes to Zendaya, immediately sparking rumors about their relationship. His caption reads, “My MJ, have the happiest of birthdays. Give me a call when your up xxx”
15. Announcement of @chadwickboseman Death
A sad day for the world, on August 28th, 2020, it was confirmed with an Instagram post that Chadwick Boseman had passed away, an actor beloved by millions. He had been battling stage 3 colon cancer since 2016, and unfortunately lost the battle four years later.
Best known for his role as King T’Challa in Black Panther, Boseman created many other films that were popular with audiences. His account still holds 11.2 million followers and the post itself currently sits at 19,363,664 likes.
His account remains intact with all other content that he posted before his passing. It will stay as a homage to him, his career, and his life that touched many.
14. @billieeilish Arriving at the 2021 Met Gala
Recently surpassing the previous photo honoring the late Chadwich Boseman, Billie Eilish arriving at the Met Gala in 2021 now has 19,371,160 likes and counting. Stunning the world in an Oscar de la Renta gown that resembles Marilyn Monroe’s classic look, the post went live on September 13th, 2021.
In her caption, she thanks the designer and goes on to say that she is happy to be a part of the change that the designer made to go completely fur-free. She was able to use her platform and not only share an iconic moment, but also stand up for what she believes in and share her brand’s voice.
This is very important— you can resonate more with your followers and viewers when you have a clear brand voice and stand for something that people identify with.
13. Photos of @cristiano after Second Manchester United Debut
2021 was a big year for soccer change ups, and not only did Messi move to PSG (see #7), but Ronaldo also moved back to one of his previous club teams, and the world was ready for it.
On September 11th, 2021, Ronaldo posted an action shot of him on the field at Old Trafford after his second debut with Manchester United. He pays homage to the name of the stadium, the “theater of dreams,” saying that he feels it’s a magical place allowing him to reach his goals.
The post currently has 19,386,612 likes, closely rivaling the #12 most liked post on our list, also held by Ronaldo.
12. Post Remembering Diego Maradona by @cristiano
Messi’s tribute to Diego Maradona was also one of the most liked Instagram posts ever, and Cristiano also gaining millions of likes from around the world on his tribute to Maradona shows just how important Maradona was as a figure in soccer.
The photo currently has 19,808,834 likes and is followed by a caption where Cristiano explains his feelings about Maradona and how this event has impacted his life. This is also important— when something noteworthy happens in your niche, it’s important to speak out.
Imagine if Ronaldo or Messi never said anything about the icon’s death? This would have been incredibly strange and would have left fans wondering why they were absent. When you post about current happenings in your industry, you stay relevant and become a part of trending topics.
11. Mermaid Kiss @ironshoremermaid
@ironshoremermaid is a unique account that appears on this list. In her bio, she explains that she is a “professional mermaid” as well as a zoologist and entrepreneur. While many of her posts don’t have likes in the millions as other accounts on this list, one video takes the cake with 20,246,089 likes.
This is a great example of how a post can go viral even if the rest of your content doesn’t get millions of likes. The video was so captivating to the world because it was a very interesting piece of content that stole the hearts of Instagram users.
“Mermaid Montana” comes up behind a little girl taking a photo in front of the tank and blows an underwater kiss to her, much to the child’s delight. Her videos like these often get tons of likes, which means that this style of content works.
It’s important to be able to identify your highest-performing types of content so that you can create more like that and gain continuously high likes and comments on your Instagram posts.
10. @leomessi Announcing his departure from Barcelona
This is the beginning of two in a row for Leo Messi in the top liked Instagram posts, and we’ve already seen him once on the list! It’s no doubt that Messi and Ronaldo are two of the most popular figures on Instagram to date.
Messi announced his departure from his club team FC Barcelona, the team that he’d been playing with for 21 years. He was incredibly dedicated and excelled during his time there, gaining global notoriety and solidifying his position as one of the best soccer players of all time.
In a long and heartfelt message left in Spanish on the caption, Leo explains his decision and shows gratitude for his time with the team. The photo currently has 21,232,014 likes.
9. @leomessi Photo with the Copa América Trophy
Yes, we have Leo Messi here again in spot 9. The following spots to come are the Billie Eilish and Leo Messi show, trading back and forth the spots for the 9, 8, 7, and 6 most liked Instagram posts.
On July 10th, Messi celebrated the win of his home country Argentina in the Copa América tournament after the 1-0 win against Brazil. It was the first win for Argentina in the Copa since 1993.
A shirtless Messi hugs the trophy like it’s a longtime friend, and who doesn’t love a good locker room photo from a soccer superstar?
The post has 22,005,040 likes, which is nearing the number 8 spot, which is taken by Billie.
8. @billieeilish Vogue Photoshoot
Again we have Billie Eilish here with one of the most talked-about magazine spreads. Vogue is an international sensation, and when Billie made her Vogue appearance, she looked notably different than she previously had.
Known for wearing baggy and tomboyish clothes, the star appeared for Vogue in tight-fitting lingerie, heels, and with her blonde hair (see #6). Her post currently has 22,068,119 likes, which is dangerously close to Messi in spot #7.
If her followers and viewers continue to like the photo, she may easily surpass the footballista. Billie Eilish is only 19 years old, which is why this set of photos really struck people. It was a notable change from her typical style and shows her developing into womanhood on her terms.
The post was uploaded on May 2nd and is the most popular of all the Vogue photos she uploaded.
7. First Post after @leomessi Signed with PSG
While Leo Messi has frequented this list in many other spots for the most liked Instagram posts, the top post from the soccer superstar is the first post he uploaded after signing with Paris Saint-Germain.
Messi played with Barcelona for an astounding 21 years, so his announcement to leave (#10 most liked Instagram posts) was quite shocking and heartbreaking, even, for many of his fans. When he posted himself with a jersey standing at the PSG stadium, it was official.
Messi racked up 22,145, 623 likes on the post from August 11th, 2021.
6. Reveal of @billieeilish Blonde Hair
Usually when you go to the salon and change up your look, it’s not the most noteworthy event, but when you’re Billie Eilish, it’s one of the most important things that people see on Instagram. So interesting, in fact, that it currently holds the 6th spot on the list of the most liked Instagram posts.
Posted on March 21, 2021, Billie maintains a total of 23,039,610 likes on that post as of writing this article. Previously, Billie had dark hair with lime green roots. This was her trademark look for quite some time, so changing to blonde was quite the shock to her fan base.
Her followers found it so interesting that their motivation to like the post skyrocketed, and she found herself with one of the most-liked posts on Instagram of all time. Like Ariana Grande, Billie’s posts on instagram average millions of likes every single time.
5. @kyliejenner Second Pregnancy Announcement
Kylie Jenner is also no stranger to this list, previously holding the record for the most liked photo at over 18 million likes. She’s also appeared earlier on this list, and was ultimately edged out of that top spot in 2019 by our #1 most liked post on Instagram, which you will see shortly.
Kyle Jenner posted a video announcement for her second pregnancy, captivating the hearts of Instagram and getting everyone in their feels. The video has 152,255,149 views and 24,570,795 likes.
The video features many different images, from lavish gatherings to the reactions of friends and family, as well as images of Kylie’s belly and the ultrasound appointment with her little one watching intently.
Her post was uploaded to Instagram on September 7th, 2021.
4. Photos of @arianagrande Wedding
Known for her clean aesthetic and timeless photos with an edge, @arianagrande has appeared on this list already and is one of Instagram’s sweethearts. Her account has hit global popularity with 282 million followers, and holds the 6th spot in terms of most-followed Instagram accounts.
The photo of @arianagrande’s wedding, posted on May 26th, 2021, holds the fourth spot on our list of the most liked Instagram posts. She captioned the photo “5.15.21 🤍” and currently maintains 26,707,448 likes on the post.
We saw another photo of her wedding take a spot on this list as well with over 18m likes. Ariana’s posts average millions of likes, so she will likely appear on this list for a long time to come.
3. Final Post @xxxtentacion
Coming down to the top 3 on our list of the most liked Instagram posts, the American rapper @xxxtentacion, Jahseh Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy, remains in third with his last post to Instagram before his death in 2018.
The post was uploaded on May 19th, 2018, and currently holds 27,400,183 likes. His death shocked the world of rap fans, breaking their collective hearts at his demise. Many of his mourners then visited his Instagram page, garnering millions of likes and comments.
There are no other posts on XXXTentacion’s Instagram, and his account currently has 19.6 million followers in spite of his early death.
2. @cristiano and @gorginagio Pregnancy Announcement
The second place photo for the most liked Instagram posts comes from another that we’ve seen frequently on this list, which is Cristiano Ronaldo and his partner Georgina Gio. Their pregnancy announcement basically broke Instagram, released on October 28, 2021.
The photo shows the pair laying down in white sheets and holding up an ultrasound of twins. The photo currently has 32,197,518 likes, holding strong in the number 2 spot. Considering Ronaldo holds the most followers aside from the Instagram account itself, it’s no wonder that so many people are motivated to like his posts on a regular basis.
1. Photo of an Egg
On January 4th, 2019, the most liked Instagram posts trajectory changed forever. A simple photo of a brown egg was posted to the account @world_record_egg and surpassed the current record holder, Kylie Jenner.
The post has the sole intention of seating the top spot of most liked posts on Instagram, and it did exactly that. The goal was to beat Kylie’s 18 million likes, and the post certainly delivered.
@world_record_egg is now a verified account, and it has 4.8 million followers. The account follows no one, and the only post is of the brown egg, which as of writing this article has 55,543,048 likes, maintaining its #1 spot.
The comments are also massive— 3.4 million comments grace the photo. This just goes to show the power of a viral photo and what people can do when they come together for something that pushes their motivation.
The account does commonly post stories, but other than that, so far nothing has really been done with the infamous account. We’re curious to see if anything comes of the account, and how long it will maintain its record.
Top Tips: How to Get More Likes on Instagram
Now that we’ve had a look at the most liked Instagram posts to date, let’s figure out the strategies behind them and how we can boost Instagram engagement through methods and tactics.
After all, we can’t all be Kylie Jenners! There are plenty of things you can do to work towards a better engagement rate on Instagram and even grow your followers. Here are 5 things you can do right now if you want more Instagram likes.
Take Advantage of Best Posting Times
If you want to grow your Instagram account and get more followers and likes, one of the most important things to do is post at the right time as well as consistently. When your followers know that you post regularly, they’ll be more likely to pay attention and keep an eye out for your posts.
Not only that, you should schedule and plan your posts to be uploaded when the majority of your audience is active on Instagram. This can help your content to get a lot of likes right out of the gate, which increases your reach naturally through the Instagram algorithm.
You can use Instagram insights to see some trends and habits about your Instagram audience and when they’re typically online; you can also check out the best times to post on Instagram in different industries on the Growthoid blog.
Create Unique and Engaging Content
If you want to motivate users to like your Instagram content, it has to be unique, original, and captivating— something that is scroll-stopping and can get your users to spend time looking at your post, reading your caption, connecting with it, and ultimately liking it.
To create the best-quality content possible, you can look at additional content strategies for Instagram as well as some of the top editing tools to help make your content noteworthy.
Apps and platforms like Photoshop, Canva, Lightroom, Instasize, and others can enhance your photos and give you design elements that help your profile to look more professional and polished.
The design templates from Canva can also give you a consistent brand image, which will also boost engagement. It’s important to have an Instagram theme that is readable to users, allowing them to easily recognize your content and know what aesthetic to expect.
When you create not only interesting content for your users but also content that follows a linear aesthetic that is cohesive, you’ll draw more people to your content, making them want to interact with it.
You users will grow to recognize and look for your posts because they have a common theme, meaning they’re more likely to check out your content and drop you a like.
Calls to actions help you to get the attention of your audience through captions and prompt them to take some kind of action after viewing your post. This could be many things, but asking for users to like is one of the most common.
One popular way to get people to like your photos through CTAs is to say something like “double tap if…” and make some kind of connection to your photo.
For instance, if you post a photo of a great restaurant, you might say “double tap if you wish you were eating here!” or “double tap if you’re had a great meal today!”
If you’re featuring fashion products, you could say “double tap if you’d look great in this!” or “double tap if you’ve worn something like this!”
You should never leave your captions without a CTA; sometimes Instagram users need a nudge to help them boost that motivation to leave you a like or comment. If you want to increase your comments, you can use the “tag someone who…” phrase to get people to tag friends in the comments, or even ask users to put an emoji if they agree with your post or feel a certain way.
Be creative and interact with your followers through your captions! CTAs are extremely useful if you want to get more Instagram likes.
Feature Other Users
Along with the “tag someone who…” CTA strategy, tagging users in your content is another way to generate engagement. One of the best things you can do is to feature user-generated content (UGC) that is relevant to your brand or business and then tag them in the post.
How does this help with Instagram engagement?
The user that created the content will get a notification that you mentioned them or tagged you in the post, which will generate interest in your post from the beginning. They will like it, and they will probably share it with friends so that they can check it out as well.
UGC is an excellent way to generate interest in your profile, connect with your followers and build relationships with your community, as well as increase customer loyalty.
You can also tag other brands or businesses when you feature their products for the chance to be shared, giving your content more exposure.
Host a Giveaway
Giveaways are a great way to get a big infusion of engagement over a short time span. When you host a contest or a giveaway, you can get your followers and viewers to take action on your content in order to gain entries.
When you ask users to like your photo as a way of entering the giveaway, you’re likely to get a lot of likes on your content. You should make it easy to enter, but also ask your followers to do other things— if it’s a giveaway for your account alone, ask them to tag a friend or two in the comments.
Also make sure to mention they must be following you in order to win.
If it’s a partner giveaway, you can require that they follow both (or all) accounts involved in the giveaway, ask them to like the post, and also comment and tag a friend. For bonus entries, you can also ask them to share the post via Instagram stories.
Most Liked Posts on Instagram: What We Can Learn
We’ve explored the 25 most-liked Instagram posts of all time and seen some of the best tips to get more likes on Instagram. Hopefully now you can boost your performance and start to increase your own engagement!
Even though it can be discouraging to see that many people on the list are A-listers, don’t forget— the #1 most liked photo on Instagram is that of a simple brown egg! You never know what can happen and how many likes you can get through the right strategy.
If you’re looking to get more exposure for your content and get more followers as well, Growthoid can help! Save time and get your posts out to the right audience while you focus on your content strategy. Try Growthoid out today!