Fix: You Can’t Message This Account Unless They Follow You on Instagram

Instagram stands as one of the most expansive and favored social media platforms globally, enabling users to effortlessly upload, edit, apply filters, and share their photos with either a selected audience or the public in just a few clicks.

While it offers an array of appealing features, the platform also upholds significant rules and regulations that users are required to adhere to. One notable rule involves limitations on messaging specific users, with an accompanying message stating this restriction.

If you’ve encountered the “You can’t message this account unless they follow you” prompt on Instagram, this guide provides insights into the reasons behind this restriction and potential solutions to address it.

Fix “You Can’t Message This Account Unless They Follow You” on Instagram

The message “You can’t message this account unless they follow you” on Instagram can surface due to various reasons. It’s essential to pinpoint the cause before addressing the issue. Here are some methods to assist you in identifying why you’re encountering this error.

1. Tell The User To Follow You

If you encounter the “You can’t message this account unless they follow you” message on Instagram, it means the user doesn’t follow you and hasn’t allowed message requests.

To bypass this restriction, consider reaching out to the user directly through other channels if you know them personally. Kindly explain the situation and ask them to follow you on Instagram. Once they follow you, the message option will be automatically enabled, allowing you to communicate with them.

2. Turn On Message Request On Instagram

If the user opts not to follow you on Instagram, there’s an alternative method to send a message without requiring a follow-back.

To resolve the “You can’t message this account unless they follow you” issue, the user you’re attempting to message needs to enable the message request feature on Instagram. Here’s a straightforward guide to help:

  • Open the Instagram app and log in to your account.
  • Tap your profile photo at the bottom-right corner.
  • Next, select the three lines in the top-right corner.
  • Choose “Settings.”
  • You’ll be directed to a new page with various options; select “Privacy.”
  • Scroll down and tap on “Messages.”
  • Click on both “Your followers on Instagram” and “Others on Instagram,” then enable the Message requests option.

Once the user enables this setting, you’ll gain the ability to send them messages, and they’ll receive a message request even if they don’t follow you. If they accept the request, you can communicate with them seamlessly.

3. Set Your Age Above 18

Instagram enforces a rule that restricts messages from unknown individuals to users under 18, unless they follow them. This safeguard aims to shield accounts from potential harassment and risks, prioritizing safety.

Consequently, if you attempt to message an underage user who doesn’t follow you, Instagram will display the “You can’t message this account unless they follow you” prompt.

However, if you wish to message them without requesting a follow, the underage user can adjust their birthdate to be over 18. Here’s a guide on how to change the birthdate on Instagram:

  • Open the Instagram app and log in.
  • Tap your profile picture at the bottom-right.
  • Select the Edit Profile button.
  • Scroll down to Personal Information Settings.
  • Tap Birthday and input a birthdate that reflects an age above 18. If your Instagram is linked to Facebook, updating it there can be done by clicking the Update on Facebook button.

Following this adjustment, the user will receive messages from you without any restrictions imposed by Instagram.


Here are a few methods to address the “You can’t message this account unless they follow you” issue on Instagram. I hope you found these tips useful. Should you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to ask in the comments section below.

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