Many things have been said about filters and, no matter if they were right or wrong, they no longer matter. Yahoo Labs and Georgia Tech analyzed more than 7.5 million pics in order to have the truth set in stone.
For instance, they discovered that the #Nofilter hashtag may be a symbol of prestige, but it will make only a few people like your pic. A filter will always enhance your pic and make people pay more attention to it (differently according to what filter you use).
Including a warm filter, in which reds and yellows are enhanced, will make people who see the pic feel better, thus earning you a few more likes. On the other hand, B&W pics or pics with a very high saturation do not longer interest general audiences.
Amongst the most popular filters are Mayfair, Rise, Valencia, Hefe and Nashville. All of them would make you get more likes and comments. However, there are other popular filters which can improve the pic (such as Lo-Fi and X-Pro-II) but won’t get people to give you a like or write a comment. The problem? Saturation. Too much of it discourages people.
Despite that, a study by the Arizona State University stated that the five most popular Instagram filters were No filter, Amaro, X-Pro-II, Valencia and Rise. According to the later research, only the last two would make you have more likes. However, these filters are amongst the seven first ones when it comes to choose, so it may simply be a matter of laziness.
What is the next step? The ASU is already conducting a research about what kind of emotions we feel when we see an Instagram photo. We will have to wait for these results, but they could change the way we look at photo-sharing social networks, especially Instagram.