From Cristiano Ronaldo to Selena Gomez, two Kardashians and a Jenner, these accounts have the highest number of followers on Instagram in 2023. 

With its millions of users, Instagram is perhaps the world’s most influential of all social networks. And for celebrities, it offers a unique platform to connect with their audience through glimpses of their private lives, voicing their opinions on issues, participating in brand endorsements and interacting with their fans across the world.

The app has even helped to create a new kind of celebrity. Instagram influencers have changed the way we scroll, the way we get entertained — even the way brands sell things to us. However, when it comes to the biggest names on Instagram, we see some fairly usual suspects. For instance, Cristiano Ronaldo recently became the first human to break the 500 million mark, with Lionel Messi not far behind. Furthermore, Instagram’s own profile amassed half a billion, pop stars continued trading places and yet another Kardashian entered the top ten. Recently, Selena Gomez also made history by becoming the first woman to cross 400 million followers on Instagram. She now has the fourth-most followed account on Instagram, behind Lionel Messi, Cristiano Roland and Instagram’s own account, 

Curious about what the most-followed Instagram accounts are right now? We’ve rounded up the top 20, with a special mention of the most popular accounts in Asia.

Most followed Instagram accounts in the world, as of December 2022

1. Instagram (@instagram). Followers: 639 Million 

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Yes, the official handle of Instagram itself comes out tops among the top most-followed accounts on the platform, boasting over 600 million followers going into mid-2022. Of its 7,000-plus posts, the most recent feature a spectrum of the platform’s popular, creative or what it deems attention-worthy creators, such as “casually cute tomboy” Shy (@sl33zyskiz) above, actress Rachel Zegler, Insta-famous mini-pig Pua or Lisa of BLACKPINK herself.

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (@cristiano). Followers: 586 Million 

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Cristiano Ronaldo has had a great couple of years. Since making his grand comeback to Manchester United, Ronaldo’s star (and following) have both continued to rise. Having crossed the 500-million mark, Ronaldo has the most followers on Instagram of any human being, alive or dead. 

3. Lionel Messi (@leomessi). Followers: 465 Million 

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Another entry in football’s G.O.A.T. conversation — especially after leading Argentina to victory at the 2022 FIFA World Cup —, one of Ronaldo’s biggest rivals in football happens to be one of CR7’s biggest on the ‘Gram, as well. Argentine forward Lionel Messi, who’s known for his penchant for fancy cars, has proven himself quite adept at the social media game, going neck-to-neck with Kylie Jenner for the #3 spot for quite some time — he recently surpassed her follower count.

4. Selena Gomez (@Selenagomez). Followers: 418 Million 

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While Selena Gomez has been open about avoiding social media, her account is one of the most popular ones on Instagram. Not just that, but she has also been the fastest climber on the list as of late. She now holds the unique distinction of being the first woman to cross 400 million followers as well as having the most-followed Instagram account for a woman. Her shoots, plandids and candids make excellent content for her feed, while Gomez uses her platform for good, talking openly about mental health and encouraging followers to educate themselves on the importance of mental fitness.

5. Kylie Jenner (@kyliejenner). Followers: 392 Million 

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Image credit: Kylie/@kyliejenner/Instagram

Kylie Jenner, who is the brain behind Kylie Cosmetics, Kylie Skin, Kylie Swim, Kylie Baby and more, was included in Forbes 30 Under 30 —Hall of Fame, 2022. Jenner is the first woman to break 300 million followers on Instagram. However, she has lost the title of being the most-followed woman in the world to Selena Gomez.  

6. Dwayne Johnson (@therock). Followers: 381 Million 

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In another neck-and-neck battle for Instagram dominance, The People’s Champ and Ariana Grande continue battling it out for the 6th most-followed spot, seemingly changing positions every few weeks or so. Currently, it goes to Hollywood movie star, tequila mogul, future presidential candidate (?) and former WWE champion, better known as The Rock. He has built his ever-increasing following with a candid look into his life and by offering an endless supply of workout and lifestyle motivation.

7. Ariana Grande (@arianagrande). Followers: 372 Million

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Who doesn’t want to follow Ariana Grande? The Grammy-winning singer has had an eventful few years that have kept people paying attention. Grande became the most followed musician on the platform in 2019 and continues to be so. With a feed filled with teasers of what’s to come (and the occasional look back at what got her there), she doesn’t appear to be giving up that title any time soon.

8. Kim Kardashian (@kimkardashian). Followers: 357 Million 

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Despite being one of the most famous faces in the world, Kim has only grown more interesting in her post-Kanye West life, and it’s no surprise to see Kim Kardashian in the top 10. While Keeping Up with the Kardashians may have bid farewell after 20 seasons, Kim continues to stay in the headlines, with no sign of slowing down. And with The Kardashians, a new Kardashian-Jenner show on Hulu, we’ll still be seeing plenty of Kim for a long time to come.

9. Beyoncé (@beyonce). Followers: 310 Million 

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Still flawless after all this time, there will only ever be one Beyoncé. The singer-actress-songwriter-producer-dancer-businesswoman-director-and-more changed the way artists release albums forever with Lemonade. Queen Bey has found a way to toe the line between larger-than-life superstardom while still giving us the occasional intimate glimpse into her and her family’s world through social media. 

10. Khloé Kardashian (@khloekardashian). Followers: 307 Million 

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Khloé takes the 10th spot to become the third Kardashian-Jenner on the list of most-followed Instagram accounts in the world. However, she has to defend her spot from a rapidly climbing Kendall, who has over 289 million followers.

11. Nike (@nike). Followers: 294 million

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Being the second-largest corporate account after Instagram’s in-house account, Nike is a masterclass in running a successful performance. With high-quality posts and a strong theme, the brand overtook former runner-up National Geographic. This has made Nike the world’s eleventh most popular Instagram account, beating celebrities like Khloe Kardashian and Miley Cyrus. 

12. Justin Bieber (@justinbieber). Followers: 290 million

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It has been almost two decades since Justin Bieber debuted, and fans and followers still flock to him in droves. Bieber, who rose to fame with his 2009 debut EP My World, has no signs of slowing down. Instead, the singer has gone from strength to strength, releasing many studio albums, winning two Grammy awards, 26 Billboard Music Awards, and 23 Teen Choice Awards.

His Instagram feed is a mix of snapshots of him recording music, his married life with Hailey Baldwin Bieber, shoutouts to his native Canada and stream-of-consciousness musings on spirituality. His genuine, self-confident approach to social media is hugely refreshing after his tumultuous teen years.

13. Kendall Jenner (@kendalljenner). Followers: 289 million

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The reality TV star and model Kendall Jenner is social media’s most popular model. And that’s not the only nod Jenner received. She’s also the most ‘buzzed about’ model, which means she garnered the highest number of mentions or tags in captions and comments. 

Kendall not only has a large fanbase from the show, but she has also landed campaigns for Givenchy and Balmain while becoming the face of Estée Lauder. To her credit, though, Kendall has mastered the art of ad posts that double as posts you genuinely want to double-tap. 

14. National Geographic (@natgeo). Followers: 277 million

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National Geographic is celebrating a milestone with over 250 million followers on Instagram. Nat Geo’s Instagram’s creative control is mainly in the hands of the contributing photographers who share the rare and incredible sights they encounter daily. The stunning images paired with photographers’ captions bring authenticity to the account. National Geographic has set a bar for visual storytelling that brings the world closer together.

15. Taylor Swift (@taylorswift). Followers: 260 million

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If you doubt Taylor Swift‘s world domination, prepare to shake it off. The international pop star, who’s in the business of breaking records, has cemented that top tier’ gram status with over 260 million followers. However, Swift’s secret may be a blend of adorable cat photos, her sweater selfies, and shots of her super-famous squad. 

Swift’s grid has major artistic vibes, with lots of vintage photos. She’s also a master of posting concert shots, campaign photos, and music video promos.

16. Virat Kohli (@virat.kohli). Followers: 250 million

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Not only has Virat Kohli created history by having the most followers on Instagram in Asia, but by virtue of that incredible feat, he is also the first Indian to achieve 250 million followers on Instagram. He also becomes the third sportsperson with the most followers on Instagram, behind footballing legends Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. In addition, the cricketer keeps fans up to date on his workout routine, which is a huge draw. 

The former captain of the Indian cricket team not only led India to many victories over the years but also built a successful brand with multi-million-dollar endorsement deals.

17. Jennifer Lopez (@jlo). Followers: 246 million

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We’ve said it before, and we’ll repeat it: All hail Queen J Lo! With a career spanning more than two decades, J.Lo is the GOAT. The Jenny from the Block singer has repeatedly proved why she’s a role model to millions, and the 245 million followers on social media are proof. J.Lo often treats her fans with her drool-worthy vacation pictures and gives insights into her wellness routine. We surely can’t get enough of the megastar. 

18. Kourtney Kardashian Barker (@kourtneykardarsh). Followers: 221 million

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When it comes to social media, no family has cultivated a following quite as large as the Kardashians. The Kardashians have amassed over a billion Instagram followers, so it is no wonder that Kourtney ranks in the top 20 of the most-followed Instagram accounts worldwide. The mother of three and oldest Kardashian always looks luxe AF. Kourtney’s feed embodies the “Instagram” lifestyle, complete with pools, mansions, private jets, and Birkins than you’ve seen in your life. 

19. Nicki Minaj (@nickiminaj). Followers: 220 million

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Three words: Nicki freakin’ Minaj. The rapper is already a hip-hop icon, but her incredible Instagram achievement only adds to her legendary status.

Minaj has used social media to her advantage throughout her career — especially Instagram. Take the iconic single artwork for her Billboard Hot 100 No. 2 hit “Anaconda,” or the bootylicious cover that instantly became a viral meme on the platform. 

20. Miley Cyrus (@mileycyrus). Followers: 208 million

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Miley Cyrus could be called the queen of reinvention. From “Hannah Montana” Disney star and “Bangerz” wild child to “Malibu” romantic and a millennial rock rebel, Cyrus is the perfect example of an ever-evolving artist. The renowned American singer-songwriter has won the hearts of millions of fans not only with her numbers, but her trendy fashion and style and her Instagram is proof! Her feed is pure aspiration, filled with photo shots and celeb hangouts.

Here’s a little peek at five accounts with most followers on Instagram in Asia right now –

Virat Kohli (@virat.kohli). Followers: 250 Million 

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The former Indian cricket captain has the most followers on Instagram in India and Asia. With several fan accounts in his name also boasting a large following, Virat Kohli is able to mobilise his sizeable audience into action when he posts motivational stories that go viral. He generally likes to keep things light and fun on his profile, posting videos and pictures with his actress wife Anushka Sharma, and fellow cricketers and friends.

Lisa (@lalalalisa_m). Followers: 94.3 Million

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Lisa is Thailand’s most-followed celebrity on Instagram, internationally renowned as the lead rapper and main dancer of K-pop group BLACKPINK. As a K-pop idol, she is at the top of everything — from music to fashion. Lisa is also the face of several luxury lifestyle brands, including Celine and Bulgari. On Instagram, she shares candid moments that are equally attractive, generating likes in millions.

Priyanka Chopra (@priyankachopra). Followers 87.7 Million 

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Priyanka Chopra is a name that needs no introduction. The star of Prime Video’s upcoming spy show Citadel, Chopra is a former Miss World who is known for her iconic Bollywood films as well as international projects like Love Again. With more than 87 million followers, she also holds the unique distinction of being the most followed Indian woman on Instagram.  

Raffi Ahmad and Nagita Slavina (@raffinagita1717). Followers: 69.3 Million

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Celebrity couple Raffi Ahmad and Nagita Slavina are the most-followed Indonesians on the ‘Gram. Although they share almost every moment of their high-end lifestyle with their followers, the stars of their feed are their children, with whom they travel to amazing places such as Disneyland in Paris.

Anne Curtis (@annecurtissmith). Followers: 19.1 Million 

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Adorable photos of her daughter Dahlia are the highlight of the Filipino celebrity’s account. We also get glimpses of her travels, various promotions, and her work as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. Curtis is an actress who is known for films such as Baler (2008), No Other Woman (2011) and A Secret Affair (2012).

(Featured and hero image: Courtesy Cristiano Ronaldo, Dwayne Johnson and Lionel Messi)

This story first appeared on Prestige Malaysia

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Question: What is the most followed Instagram account?

Answer: Instagram's official account tops the list with 639 million followers as of June, 2023.

Question: Who has the highest number of followers on Instagram?

Answer: While Instagram's own official account is the most followed account on the social media app, in terms of people, it's Cristiano Ronaldo who has the highest number of Instagram followers.

Question: How many followers does Ronaldo have on Instagram?

Answer: Currently, Cristiano Ronaldo has 586 million followers on Instagram.

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