How to Use Snapchat

Using Snapchat; Basics

I am sure you’d be wondering who doesn’t know how to use Snapchat? But believe you me it’s almost every day that a new friend installs the app and complains that they can’t figure out how to use it.

I remember the first time I installed Snapchat on my phone I was like “ye kia bakwas hai yar” and deleted it within a couple of minutes, this installation and deletion took place a couple of times later until I finally got the hang of it.

If you’re one of those newbies trying to survive in the world of Snapchat just sit back and relax as we continue to cover the very basics of how to use Snapchat.

What is Snapchat?

Snapchat is an app that lets you share photos and videos live with your friends. Okay, hold on! I know what you’re thinking, you have Instagram for that matter. Well, yes, you do but what makes Snapchat different is that whatever you share on Snapchat it only lasts up to 24 hours or a few seconds if not added to your story (which we will talk about down below).

How to Signup on Snapchat?

Need I tell you the app is available for download at PlayStore for Android and iStore for iOS? Once installed, signup using your email or your phone number, choose a username and a password and boom, Snap away!

Quick Tip; you won’t be able to change your Snapchat username later and this username is going to be your Snapchat identity for eternity so choose wisely, unless of course you like being known as ‘daddy’s princess’, whom am I to judge? But, I will anyway! Haha!

How To Sign up on Snapchat
Sign up on Snapchat

Getting Started on Snapchat

After successfully singing up, here are some basics you need to take care of before getting started.

Privacy Setting:

You can set your privacy setting under the ‘Who Can’ Section to ‘everyone’ or ‘friends’. Everyone; stories you add will all be visible to anyone who adds you as a friend and they’d be able to send you snaps as well. Friends; only people you add as friends on Snapchat would be able to see your stories and send you snaps. People who add you as a friend won’t be able to see your stories unless you add them back so don’t freak out when someone adds you up. You can change your settings anytime you want.
Here’s how you can change your settings on Snapchat:

How to use Snapchat
Tap on the ghost icon to go to settings
How to Use Snapchat
Tap on the settings icon on the top right corner
How to Change Privacy Settings on Snapchat
Tap on ‘Who Can’ to change your privacy settings
How to change your privacy settings on snapchat
Choose according to your preference

Add Friends:

To add friends tap the ghost icon and you will find the ‘Add Friends’ option, you can add people from your phone book, by their usernames or their snapcode.

How to add friends on snapchat
Tap the ‘Add friends’ icon to add your friends


That yellow box you see up there, it contains a bar code that you can share with your friends instead of your username to help them add you up easily. Try using a snapcode to add someone by taking a screenshot of the above image, save to gallery and select under the Add friends section select “Add by snapcode’ which will automatically scan and add to your friends.

Snap vs Stories

Before we move on let’s distinguish between snaps and stories.
Snaps are chats/conversations that you send directly to one or multiple users at a time which include photos, videos and text. A snap disappears as soon as you have viewed it, you won’t be able to see it again once you close the chat.

Stories are snaps that all your friends in your list can view as many times as they please. Stories last for a period of 24 hours; after which they automatically disappear.
Your snaps/chats will appear by swiping left on your homescreen and your Snapstory appears by swiping right.

How to Send a Snap to Someone?

On your home screen or your Snapchat camera screen, take a picture or a video (by long pressing the round icon), now there’re a list of things that you can do here before you hit the send button:

How to send a snap to someone
Take a picture, tap 1 to add emoji, tap 2 to add text, tap 3 to create a doodle

1) Add emoji’s, there’re literally more than hundreds to choose from
2) Create text
3) Create a doodle
Once you’re happy with the snap you’ve created press the blue button on the bottom right corner, select the name of the user you want to send your snap to, you can choose multiple and hit send.

How to send a snap to someone
Choose a user or users -as many as you like- and press the blue button in the bottom right corner to send
Emoji's on snapchat
Choose an emoji to add to your snap


How to Create Your Story on Snapchat?

Create a snap the same way as described above tap the ‘My Story’ icon and voila your snap is now added to your story. You can add as many snaps to your stories as you like. Everyone on your friend list can view your story whenever and however they like.

How to add a photo to your snap story on snapchat
Simply tap “My Story’ and press the blue button on the bottom right corner to send


How to Delete your Story on Snapchat

You can delete any snaps from your story at any given time by pressing the delete button.

How to view Snapchat stories

You can view what other people have shared as their stories under ‘Recent Updates’ by swiping right from your home screen. Simply tap on a user to view their story. Drag down the ghost icon to refresh this page if it doesn’t refresh automatically.

How to view other peoples stories on snapchat
Stories of your friends appear under the ‘Recent Updates’, tap on a person whose story you want to view

Snapchat Filters

Often see people with doggie faces with their tongue hanging out and you wonder what app is that? That’s one of the Snapchat filters or Snapchat Lenses. To use one in your snaps simply long press against your face on the camera screen until the Snapchat filters appear in the bottom, swipe right to choose one and send it as a snap or add it to your story. And please I beg you whatever you do just stay away from the doggie filter, there already are a lot many of them out there!

How to use a snapchat filter
Swipe right to view filters and apply filters

Celebrities to follow on Snapchat

Getting to know how your friends are really chilling as opposed to a Facebook status or an Instagram selfie is one thing but getting live updates from celebrities is the real deal on Snapchat.
Here’re six celebrities I recommend you follow:

Mehreen Syed Snapchat username: mehreensyed
Hira Tareen Snapchat username: hiratareen
Faryal Makhdoom Snapchat username: faryalxmakhdoom
Anoushey Ashraf Snapchat username:anoushey
Annie Khalid Snapchat username: annie.khalid
Sonam Kapoor Snapchat username: sonamakapoor

No awesome friends on Snapchat to add? Add me up and let’s be friends, would love to see your story.
Username: madihacheema
And the next time someone asks you how to use Snapchat? Don’t forget to share this post with them. Leave me a comment below if this post was of any help to you or if you would like me to post more Snapchat tips and tricks.