Advice on the New Snapchat: Master It in a Snap

It’s happened: the new Snapchat design is here, and it’s final – at least, until the next update. Despite all the hate towards it expressed by users, Snapchat will keep it. And we are to live with it, at least until the next big update (we will hate from the beginning and recollect the current one warmly).

Well, Snapchat has never been intuitive, and its users should never grow old – at least, mentally. Welcome to the anti-aging club, if you plan to use it after all the changes still. And we will help you keep up with all the changes made. Here comes the instruction on the revamped Snapchat.


Well, if you are interested in the new Snapchat, you must have dealt with the old version, and, probably, you have created an account already, haven’t you? Still, even if not, the first steps are always simple: download the app for your platform, create a profile with your phone and email (they won’t be exposed), make yourself a username and generate a password.  And this is the simplest part of it.
Later it will show you some video instructions. You can return to them. But we recommend you run Snapchat, read the following text, and follow the instruction in the app to see it IRL.

Home Screen Layout

As you launch the app, you will not see the home screen with contact lists and stuff we’re used to. Instead, you’ll be greeted with your own face through the front camera. No mistake: this is the central home screen. There are two more, though:

  • Friends Screen. To see it, swipe right.
  • Discover Screen. To see it, swipe right.

Yes, it’s the same mechanics that is now used in Facebook or Instagram. These apps aren’t so pic-oriented to put the camera first. But still, their developers get inspired by Snapchat… a bit.

To view yourself, tap your profile in the circle in the upper-left corner. The profile menu lets you access settings, scan your contacts to find other Snapchat users, or add new friends. Here you can also look trophies and snap points, but, to tell the truth, so far they give you nothing, so let’s nor focus on them.

Taking Pictures and Videos with Basic Enhancements

To make a snap, tap anywhere on the screen (with the front camera on) to focus, and then tap the button in the bottom to snap. But taking it is just a part of the process: the processing is the main part.

It’s swipe-based again. After you snap a pic, swipe left or right to apply various filters and borders or view them in full-screen preview. Now your pictures are meant to take the entire screen, so the control system is even more gesture-based.

Photo Editing

When you have taken a photo, you’ll see white buttons on its right side. They are responsible for all the effects we love about Snapchat. And now they get even closer than ever. Let’s review them all, from the top down.

  • Text (the T letter). It’s all about texts you add. Tap it, and then enter your text. You’ll be able to select the color and the font for it. But in order to drag it over the pic, you need to close the Text menu. You can also resize and rotate it with simple gestures.
  • Brush. It’s a drawing tool with various brushes, selectable colors, and thickness. Just like you have in Paint or online drawing tools.
  • Stickers. The one we love the most about Snapchat, with its incredible richness in various glamorous fonts, bright colors, and so on.

Heats and glasses, smiling faces and thumbs up, stars and balloons are here too, for you to color up your selfies or photos with friends. It also has the entire list of emoji.

The most popular ones are at the top, including current data – time, temperature (for beaches or mountains, equally impressive), MPH (it’s great for videos, in fact), or location. If you expected to find these among the filters, we understand: that was one of the reasons to protest. But treating them as stickers seems more rational.

There are also Bitmoji stickers available. To generate them, you’ll need a special app, available both for Android and iOS. Then you get your own set of 3D animated emoji, based on your own face. If you decide to change your style, it takes a minute to refresh the set with a new look.

  • URL. Well, just type the URL you want to link to your picture, and it will display.
  • Crop. It’s quite regular: crop the picture to remove unnecessary elements on the edges. It also lets you rotate the picture. You’ve probably seen the same tool in various picture editors.
  • Self-destruction timer. If you want to send this snap privately, it will define how long it will be viewable. After the time viewed expires, the photo gets deleted. The time can be set for up to 10 seconds, or left without the bomb.

As you see, the tools are quite convincing, and (what’s more important) they have what makes Snapchat a thing. The resulting photo can be saved to your gallery, or the vault named Memories (it holds the photos and videos you publish or those you mark). It doesn’t offer anything Gallery doesn’t offer too, though.

Sharing Photos

There are two ways of sharing photo you have made and edited in Snapchat. You can post it to your public story, where it will remain visible for 24 hours, or send directly to certain users. You can also send it to multiple users, selecting them the regular way you do in your OS.

Well, there may be photos shared with you by others, right? To view the incoming snaps, go to your “Friends” page. Now it contains both messages and stories, and that’s another innovation that users didn’t approve. In the earlier version, the stories of your friends could be found in “Discover” section. Mixing your friends with celebrities, it made you the unique feeling of being in. No wonder many users hold on to this experience of closeness to politicians, musicians, actors, bloggers they are subscribed to. It’s like being kicked out of the afterparty.


Well, it still just tap over your friend’s avatar to start the chat. Find the friend on your list, tap the name – and start the chat. The same way it’s done in any messenger, including, pardonne-moi, Skype.

By the way: there is also voice and video call feature that is accessed via phone and camera icons within the open chat. But Snapchat is not for using in such a plain way. So these features are just a nice-to-have-but-not-crucial option.


The most social thing about Snapchat is constantly in touch with various celebrities or just recommended (and advertised) people. Discover is the section meant for viewing public profiles. Along with stars, there are local events, recommended and advertised activities, and so on. It looks like the search tab on Instagram. Though a bit messy after the update, it’s still fun to read to spend a spare minute.

That’s why the app needs your location. It shows you the nearest events you might be interested in. But even if you aren’t, you can just watch your friends visit them.

AR Filters

While initially, SnapChat was about self-destructing messages, now its primary feature is AR-based filters. All those dog ears, cat noses, flowers, glasses, masks and backgrounds are compatible with front and rear cameras.

Just open the camera tab, look at yourself on the screen, then swipe horizontally on the screen (trying not to touch buttons) to view various filters in real-time. The filters change every day, and Snapchat has lots of them to avoid being repetitive. The most popular ones, though, come to stay.

Among the most demanded AR filters, one should name the Dog Ears, and, of course, Face Swap. Better than any rivals offer, this filter can swap the two faces in the camera, and they don’t even have to be both human.


And here comes (arguably) the most impressive tool in the current version of Snapchat. Scissors is the tool for making stickers out of someone’s pictures. You just need to crop an item out of the pic and transform it into a sticker. It turns out unexpectedly easy, and the quality is surprisingly decent. Then you just need to open the stickers menu and select the scissors tab, and access your stickers.


If you support Snapchat, its own support team does as well. You can find it as a contact in your friendlist, added by default, and can never remove. With it, you can ask questions or report issues with just a single message. And that’s the case when you can make use of the voice chat.

If you are getting confused about the new interface, and didn’t find the answer here, you can just contact the official support and ask your questions. And, of course, get your answers right when you need them.