Elizabeth Olsen Explains Why She’s Never Joining Instagram Again

Photo by Alex Hodor-Lee. Elizabeth Olsen is styled by Sarah Slutsky. Hair by Mark Townsend; Makeup by Gita Bass.

Elizabeth Olsen’s star only continues to rise thanks to WandaVision, but she’s quite content at keeping her follower count at precisely zero. After keeping an only occasionally updated Instagram for a few years, the actress officially deleted her account last year and is pretty sure she’s never going back.

“Every day I think I should delete it,” Olsen told Harper’s Bazaar UK in 2018 while she was still on the platform. “I still don’t know why I’m on it, then I think, well, ‘I guess I want to promote Avengers’ and then I find myself putting something private up there and I think, ‘This is stupid, why did I do that? I should delete it immediately.’”

Olsen had only decided to join anyway to research her role as an influencer in Ingrid Goes West (the 2017 film co-starring Aubrey Plaza which only continues to grow in reputation as the definitive cinematic take on IG culture). Though, unlike many of us, she never quite got addicted to it. She finally shut it down for good this past September.

“I had never touched it before [Ingrid Goes West],” Olsen now tells Grazia USA. “What I discovered was one, I’m really bad at creating a perceived identity!”

Olsen says she got a kick out of posting a silly video every now and then or promoting one of her smaller films or charities, but ultimately couldn’t deal with all the pressures of posting.

“Lots of horrible things happen all the time. Or, lots of great things happen all the time. Whether it’s something terrifying, like a natural disaster or a school shooting or a death, there are so many things that happen, and I love processing information. I love reading articles. I love listening to podcasts. I love communicating about things that are happening in the world to people around me. And what I don’t love is that my brain organization was saying, ‘Should I post about this?’ That seemed very unhealthy….”

While Olsen says she’s not casting judgment on anyone who uses the platform, her issues with it are probably recognizable to anyone who does. The struggle of trying to strike the right tone, in general, is one thing, but the balance of trying to raise awareness or seem politically engaged without feeling like you’re wading into the waters of slacktivism or performative politics is quite another.

Olsen isn’t the only young actress who has decided to steer clear of the platform, at least publicly. Actresses like Emma Stone, Carey Mulligan, and Olsen’s fellow Avenger Scarlett Johansson have all stayed off the platform. Jennifer Lawrence, too, doesn’t maintain a public presence on Instagram, though she has hinted in the past to the existence of a finsta.

Related: Elizabeth Olsen Explains Why Sisters Mary-Kate and Ashley Don’t Indulge the Media With Interviews