Once something is gone it’s gone forever. At least, that used to be the case before the digital era. Every celebrity under the sun has an Instagram account where they upload and delete pictures at the click of a button. But not without the internet getting a hold of the image first. It’s never been harder to erase your digital footprint.
From photoshop fails to thirst traps, these stars had Insta-regret over these photos. And while you won’t find them on their profiles anymore, they’re still lurking around on the web. Take a look at these controversial celebrity photos proving that nothing is ever really deleted from the internet.
Christina Aguilera’s Changing Appearance
When Christina Aguilera posted this photo on her Instagram account, she had no idea that it would be so controversial. She’s not usually one to post candid photos of herself, so this was supposed to be a rare treat. But her fans were more confused than delighted.
People online quickly took to the comment section, accusing the star of plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. In particular, her lips were under the most scrutiny. After she was accused of having lip fillers, she deleted the post in hopes of people leaving her appearance alone.
Scott Disick Exposes His #Spon
Kourtney Kardashian’s ex Scott Disick has earned himself a sleezy reputation lately for dating girl’s young enough to be his daughter – most notably Sofia Ritchie. He suffered an embarrassing blunder when he posted this photo to 25 million people. It’s cringy enough that he was trying to shill a weight loss shake to all of his followers.
Scott accidentally posted the instructions he was given for the sponsored Instagram post. It said: “Here you go, at 4pm est, write the below. Caption: Keeping up with the summer workout routine with my morning @booteauk.” Needless to say it was quickly deleted, but too little too late.
Selena Gomez Ditches Pants for a Day
Selena Gomez surprised her followers by posting this cheeky photo of her chilling in her underwear to his Instagram. Wearing a white halter neck top and a cheetah print briefs, she simply captioned the photo: “Morning.” But something made her change her mind about keeping it online for too long.
She deleted the racy mirror-selfie not long after it hit 1 million likes, but ultimately decided that it was too provocative. Unfortunately for her, the internet ensures that nothing ever really goes away. And this revealing snapshot can be found in all sorts of newspapers, websites, and even Pinterest boards.
Joe Jonas’ Former Squad Goals
Joe Jonas used to think of Zayn Malik as one of his closest friends, up until the former One Direction star started dating his ex-girlfriend, Gigi Hadid. Joe once posted this photo of them on Instagram with the caption “#SQUAD.” That was until, he found out about his friend dating his ex. He deleted the photo as soon as news of the couple broke.
Now Gigi and Zayn have recently had a baby, we wonder if he got over it and sent them a baby gift. Pictured in the photo, Joe sits alongside Zayn and Kanye West in Paris at a Valentino fashion show, on the front row. But you won’t find it on his ‘gram anymore.
Kim Kardashian Gave Everyone a Clue
After months of speculation, Kim Kardashian has recently revealed that she is filing for a divorce from husband of seven years, Kanye West. Rumors had been swirling around for months as Kanye’s mental health has been called into question, but nothing concrete had been said.
The closest we got to a clue was when Kim posted this closet selfie on Instagram, advertising her underwear brand Skims. But fans couldn’t help but notice her wedding ring was missing, and she quickly took it down. It’s not clear whether she was sending us a subtle message or accidentally slipped up. Either way, she wasn’t ready for it to become public news just yet that there was trouble in paradise.
Mischa Barton Sips Wine on a Yacht and Preaches About Police Issues
Mischa Barton found herself in some hot water after posting this photo on Instagram. What was a well-intentioned caption ultimately felt incredibly tone-deaf to her fans, as she chose this photo to highlight a serious police shooting issue. “Somebody make change,” she urged her followers.
Mischa continued: “The world is in a precarious place right now. #stop, #reflect and #act appropriately.” People accused the actress of being “out-of-touch” and “privileged,” considering she was sipping alcohol on a yacht in the photo. She took down the post and issued an apology on Twitter, stating “I’m human, I’m not perfect.”
Billie Eilish Should Be Counting Her Blessings
Billie Eilish tried to U-turn her decision to post this selfie on her Instagram stories. While getting her roots dyed, she pulls a pained expression that feels totally relatable. Until you read the caption that went along with it. She quoted the phrase “The fame is getting to her,” – which was frequently commented by followers under her posts at the time.
Billie added in reply: “yea no s*** it’s miserable out here lmfao.” But no one wants to hear about the struggles of being rich and famous. She got a backlash from her fans for failing to consider her privilege, as almost everyone else in the world has it much harder than her. Instagram stories automatically delete after 24 hours, but Billie wisely chose to pull this post earlier.
Jordyn Woods Shades Her Former Best Friend
Jordyn Woods amassed her nearly 12 million Instagram followers through her famous friendship with Kylie Jenner. They were childhood BFFs until a scandal struck in 2019, where she admitted to kissing Khloe Kardashian’s baby daddy Tristan Thompson. And as Khloe’s little sister, Kylie decided to put family first and end things with Jordyn.
Jordyn took to Instagram a few months later with this photo showing off her nail polish. But her caption hinted she was shading her ex-best friend: “Girls be doin the most to show off their nail color.” With Kylie’s obsession of posting acrylic nail selfies, people saw straight through her post. She soon decided it was better not to start a social media war and deleted it off her ‘gram.
Amy Schumer Pokes Fun at Hilaria Baldwin
Amy Schumer recently poked fun at the Spanish heritage scandal surround Alec Baldwin’s wife Hilary “Hilaria” Baldwin. She was accused of faking her family roots (and a bad Spanish accent) in a display of cultural appropriation. The comedian couldn’t help but make fun of Hilaria’s response to it all, before deciding it was best she should delete it.
When Hilaria received a backlash from the public, she claimed to just be influenced by her childhood visits to Spain. Amy posted this photo on Instagram along with the caption: “I get it. I went to Spain a couple times and loved it too.” She also posted the cucumber emoji, referencing a video where Hilaria claims to forget how to pronounce the fruit’s name. You know, because she’s so Spanish.
Harry Styles Thinks Ignorance Is Bliss
Harry Styles got on everyone’s last nerve when he posted this photo to the ‘gram. Pictured in a shop, he dons a Native American headdress and pulls a menacing look to the camera. People quickly called him out for cultural appropriation, informing him that it was offensive and racist.
Harry did delete the photo, hoping to quash people’s criticisms. But as we know, nothing ever really gets deleted from the internet, and a lot of people were very upset. Especially when he chose not to issue an apology to the Native American community for the insensitive photo.
Khloe Kardashian Looks Totally Unrecognizable
Big sister Khloe Kardashian decided to delete this selfie after all the backlash she got for posting it. Instagram followers claimed she was unrecognizable from her usual self and accused the reality star of going to heavy on the photoshop. It didn’t have anything to do with the fact that she looks topless.
A lot of people have strong opinions on the heavy editing of photos, believing it to have a negative influence on their young fan base. After seeing people’s comments Khloe claimed it was an “old photo,” but her followers weren’t going to let it slide that easily. In the end she just deleted it, presumably in the hopes that everyone would forget about the whole thing.
Ellie Goulding Doesn’t Want Any Bad Blood
Ellie Goulding sent fans into a frenzy when she posted this cute photo of her hanging out with famous popstar friends Katy Perry and Lorde. She forgot that she’s also BFF’s with Taylor Swift, who has had an ongoing feud with Katy Perry. She deleted the photo soon after, but claimed she didn’t do it for Taylor’s sake.
She told reporters at the Glamour Awards: “No, I deleted that because I looked bad in it. I just looked terrible in it. I zoomed in on my actual photo, and I was like, ‘no.’” Whether or not she was telling the truth, we’ll never know for sure. But it sure is convenient.
Hailey Baldwin Puts Shawn Mendes Behind Her
Shortly before Hailey Baldwin became Mrs. Bieber, she was in a relationship with Shawn Mendes. After they broke up Shawn went on to explain that he was happy for her happiness with Justin but suggested he may in fact have some regrets. You lost your chance, Shawn!
He told an interviewer: “I think I’m an idiot to not, you know… But you can’t control your heart.” Whatever he’s implying, it sounds like he messed up. Hailey wiped this photo, along with a few others, clean off of her Instagram. But the internet still remembers…
Natalie Schlater And Her Humble Brag
Swedish Influencer Natalie Schlater caused an online outrage when she posted this photo on Instagram. She was wearing a skimpy bikini alongside the caption: “Thinking about how different my life is from the man picking in the rice field every morning.” Soon after, thousands of people commented about her tone-deaf “humble brag.”
Natalie tried to stick up for herself, writing that photo and message was “extremely misunderstood.” She added: “I am very aware of my privileges and I was recognizing how hardworking and unbelievably kind the Indonesian people are and never meant to come off disrespectful.” Needless to say, she deleted this photo.
Timothee Chalamet Expresses His Androgynous Style
Many of Timothee Chalamet’s young fans were delighted to see him post this mirror selfie. Wearing a mesh flower-embellished top, bracelets, and earrings, Timothee proves he’s not afraid to express his feminine side. Not to mention, he takes the photo using his pink iPhone. We love to see it.
Those same fans were pretty mad to see that he changed his mind and deleted it. They (jokingly) accused him of posting a thirst trap and deleting it only to leave his fans wanting more. One user commented: “Timothee baby we all already saw it’s too late.” We’re sure he’ll get over it.
Bella Hadid Gives Selena Gomez the Cold Shoulder
Bella Hadid deleted this editorial Instagram post, seemingly, out of passive aggression towards Selena Gomez. There has been tension between them for years – they both share the same ex-boyfriend, Abel Tesfaye AKA The Weekend. After Bella posted this image, Selena commented, “Stunning,” supposedly as a way of sending an olive branch.
And all of sudden Bella’s post was nowhere to be found. People took it as a sign of bad blood between the stars; perhaps Bella wasn’t ready to become best friends just yet. When fans told the singer that the post had been deleted, Selena replied “that sucks.” And there hasn’t been any more public communication between the pair of them since.
Meghan Markle Took a Bedroom Selfie
Before Meghan Markle met Prince Harry and joined the royal family, she was extremely active on Instagram. She was working as an actress on Suits, her biggest gig to date, and trying to become a lifestyle blogger. But Meghan’s deleted Instagram shows a completely different side of her.
These days, Meghan more or less adheres to royal protocol. But back then, she wasn’t afraid of posting much more revealing content. Some of the photos she tried to wipe from the internet show her lounging around in a bikini, whereas others show the inside of her bedroom. And not to mention, she loved a selfie moment.
Kylie Jenner Changes Race Again
Kylie Jenner made a bad move by uploading this Instagram photo. A shot from a professional photoshoot, Kylie appears very different from her usual self. People accused her of trying to appear like a different race, which is something she and her sisters have come under fire for several times.
It didn’t help that she captioned it, “What I wish I looked like all the time,” acknowledging how the photo has been heavily edited. She ended up deleting the controversial image, and defended herself more on Twitter. She wrote: “The photographer used a black light & neon lights for those photos. Let’s all calm down.” We guess that’s the closest thing to an explanation anyone’s going to get.
Ariana Grande Gets R-Rated
Ariana Grande’s no stranger to posting a racy photo here and there, but this one might have been too much for her younger fan base. The candid photo of her rehearsing with a backup dancer has had a black and white filter applied and the brightness turned way down. And that makes it look all the more suspicious.
But we can see why Ariana made it harder to make out exactly what’s going on. We’re not sure what dance move this is but it definitely looks R-rated. Perhaps that’s why she decided she was better off just deleting it off of her Instagram timeline. Either that, or Instagram removed it for breaching their community guidelines!
Jaden Smith’s Instagram Is NSFW
Jaden Smith let his inhibitions go with this steamy bathroom mirror selfie. He posted this topless photo to Instagram showing off his toned body, cropping the photo just right so it wouldn’t get flagged. Naturally, his millions of followers went into a meltdown.
But only a few short days later Jaden decided to take it off of his Instagram profile, for reasons unknown. We know he couldn’t have been feeling shy, as it’s not the first time he’s flaunted his chiseled physique. As his dad Will Smith said about him: “He is so completely comfortable and confident in who he is.” We love to see it.
Charli D’Amelio Shows Her Ex What He’s Missing
Social media personality and TikTok sensation Charli D’Amelio has amassed a following of 80 million people on the video-sharing site. She broke up with her boyfriend, TikToker Chase Hudson after he cheated on her in 2020. To which she had a very clear message to send him.
She captioned this photo “your loss,” leaving no doubt in Chase’s mind who she was talking to. Chase continued to deny claims that he had cheated, but Charli knew her self-worth. Still, she decided against leaving this post up for long. After all, relationship drama is best kept private.
The Rock Shows Us His Sensitive Side
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is one of the toughest guys in Hollywood – at least that’s what Hollywood would have you believe. In reality, he’s said to be a big softy who’s quite in-touch with his sensitive side. And this photo he posted on Instagram pretty much shows us that.
Sitting in comfortable quarters on his very own private plane, he appears to be lying on the bed and journaling. He captioned the photo: “#visionbook,” suggesting that it’s where he keeps track of his goals. But a few people thought it was really more of a “dear diary” moment. Either way, the former wrestler found it a bit too exposing and soon took the photo down.
Taylor Swift Sets a Bad Example
Taylor Swift found herself in some hot water with this holiday photo. It all seemed innocent enough – Taylor and her pal’s soaking up the sun on a yacht. But people couldn’t help but notice the handrail on the right-hand side was unusually bent. Which could only mean one thing.
The photo had been altered! Using a photoshopping app, it’s possible to digitally “touch up” images but they often leave clues behind. Considering Taylor’s young fan base, people were unhappy to see she was warping the natural bodies of her and her friends. She just deleted the photo to spare any more criticisms.
Solange Removes Beyonce From Her Profile
Not long after “that” elevator fight with Jay Z, Beyonce’s sister Solange deleted photos on Instagram of her with her famous big sister. People jumped to the assumption that something had happened between the singer-songwriters and their relationship had soured.
This photo was one of the lovely images that got removed. Another fan theory was that Solange wanted to distance her public image from Beyonce. It can’t be easy being a sister to the most successful woman on the planet. A few days later, Beyonce posted four photos on her Instagram of the sisters together – she obviously didn’t want rumors getting out of hand.
Cody Simpson’s Instagram Gets Intense
Cody Simpson broke all kinds of Instagram guidelines when he posted this raunchy photo on Instagram. He and Miley Cyrus were rumored to be dating at the time, and this sent a clear message to the public about their relationship status. For anyone in doubt, we can confirm that Miley’s hand is definitely down his pants.
She had recently broken up with Liam Hemsworth but was clearly moving on just fine. She commented on the photo: “Need. Oxygen. Can’t. Breathe. I. Stan. For. Ever. Ship.” But Cody decided against having something too racy on his public profile and deleted it eventually.
Kim Kardashian’s Photoshop Fail
Before Blac Chyna had a baby with Rob Kardashian, before she feuded with Kylie Jenner, and before Rob released those revenge photos, Blac Chyna was besties with Kim Kardashian. They were such good friends, they took butt selfies (or belfies) with each other in Kim’s giant walk-in closet.
The internet quickly spotted Kim’s photoshop fail – the sliding door on the left. Kim had edited her top half to appear fuller and rounder, but it warped the surrounding areas. Unless of course, despite her millions, she has a wonky mansion in Calabasas? She definitely regretted uploading this one and deleted off the ‘gram.
Justin Bieber Goes Full Monty
Justin Bieber sent the internet into a meltdown when he posted this pic to the ‘gram. The full version shows him completely naked, turned away from camera. Basically, his entire butt is on display and gleaming in the sun light. Anything for an even tan, right? But who can blame him – he’s on his private yacht (presumably with Hailey Baldwin) with nothing but the sea and mountains ahead.
Justin cheekily captioned the photo “Look,” knowing full well no one’s taking in the natural landscape. He deleted the photo and posted this explanation: “I Deleted the photo of my butt on Instagram not because I thought it was bad but someone close to me’s daughter follows me and she was embarrassed that she saw my butt and I totally wasn’t thinking in that aspect. And I felt awful that she felt bad.”
Kylie Jenner’s Major Photoshop Fail
Makeup mogul and Kardashian gal Kylie Jenner is used to the comment section blowing up. But when she realized why everyone was criticizing her, she quickly tried to rectify the situation by deleting this photo. Her followers noticed the not-so-subtle photoshop fail that she totally overlooked.
If you look at the bottom of the photo, underneath her thigh, the structure of the pool has been compromised. People always suspect that the Kardashian sisters pull and drag at areas to make their bodies look fuller. And in this instance, the youngest sister was caught totally red-handed.
Kim Zolciak May Have Revealed Her Daughter’s Cosmetic Surgery
Former Real Housewives of Atlanta star Kim Zolciak posted this cute photo of her on a family vacation with husband Kroy Biermann and daughter Brielle. But people noticed that Brielle was looking a little different from how she usually does. The youngster’s face appeared fuller, and her lips looks bigger.
People in the comment section accused the reality star of letting her daughter have plastic surgery or cosmetic enhancements, and it didn’t go down well. Her role as a mother was called into question, and Kim couldn’t stand the accusations. She opted to just delete the photo altogether, hoping for the speculation to subside.
Blac Chyna Doesn’t Want You To Look Too Closely
Model and socialite Blac Chyna changed her mind after posting this cute throwback photo. Pictured as a teenager, she gave her fans a rare glimpse into her life before fame and fortune. She decided against, for unknown reasons, but we might know why it is she thought it better to remove the picture.
It’s long been speculated that Rob Kardashian’s ex and baby mama Blac Chyna has undergone a lot of cosmetic procedures. From butt implants to hair transplant surgery, many people suspect she’s had several enhancing treatments to better fit the model spec. She’s hasn’t confirmed or denied these rumors… but this photo might have made it too easy to see just how much has changed in recent years.
Reese Witherspoon’s Post Didn’t Age Well
Noone knew what 2020 would become at the beginning of the year. The global pandemic made it one of the most difficult years in recent history, and stars have learn’t to choose their words carefully in light of it. This was an innocent picture that she posted on New Years Eve, showing her having family fun time at home with her son.
She captioned the post: “Happy New Year! Can’t wait to see what 2020 will bring!” But as we know now, there wasn’t much about 2020 worth celebrating. Reese obviously thought the post didn’t age well and decided it was best to remove it at any case. Here’s to 2021!
Kim Kardashian’s Revealing Throwback Photo
Reality star Kim Kardashian posted this funny throwback photo of her with sister Khloe and Kourtney way before they became the biggest stars on the planet. The sisters flaunt their figure on holiday in bikinis, and it really highlights just how much they have changed over the years.
Not only do the Kardashian sisters dress completely differently, but their figures have totally transformed. They are famously quiet about what – if any – cosmetic surgeries they have undergone, and this photo might have just made it all too easy for their critics to tear apart. Better not to have it on Instagram.
Blake Lively’s Suggestive Promo Photo
Actress Blake Lively posted this photo back in 2018 to promote her comedy film, A Simple Favor. It’s a photo from a shoot they did, and it’s certainly eye-catching. Blake wears a suit and stands over a man suggestively, while he holds up a martini glass for her. We’re not surprised she thought twice about keeping this photo on her Instagram.
But Blake’s husband Ryan Reynolds had the funniest response to this photo, simply writing, “he seems nice.” We love it when they troll eachothers photos online. Either way, she didn’t feel like keeping this photo on her feed for too long.
Lele Pons Regets This Handsy Pic
Venezuelan–American Internet star Lele Pons is only 24 years old, but has a huge online following. She posted this photo to her almost 45 million Instagram followers, showing her looking glamorous for an event. Of course, it’s hard to ignore the cheeky hand reaching out and grabbing her behind.
Lele captioned the photo: “The only person who touches the butt is…” But we’re still not sure who she gave permission to. But for some reason or another, she chose to remove it from her feed. Pehaps she didn’t want people finding out who it really was?
Halsey’s Badly-Timed Holiday Snap
Singer-songwriter Halsey posted this scenic shot of her with her boyfriend Alev Aydin on holiday. It was February 2020, and they were having a romantic getaway moment for Valentine’s Day. She captioned the photo: “Life is going ‘swimmingly’. Happy Valentine’s Day.”
The global pandemic was still in its early stages at the time, and little must Halsey have realized what was going to come. The comment didn’t age well, and Halsey probably thought it was best to remove the post entirely since international travel became a privelidge very few could enjoy.
Mia Khalifa Bares All With a Bestie
Lebanese-American media personality and x-rated model Mia Khalifa posted this steamy photo to her Instagram back in April 2020. She captioned this photo: “I went live on IG with my best friend Jenna Lee today! We talked about everything from the process of buying her first house, to the empowerment she gets from taking her financial security into her own hands.”
Mia added that they also spoke about her friend “using her body and SELF TAUGHT business savvy.” The model isn’t usually camera-shy, but perhaps this photo was a little too revealing for her liking. Even though their bodies were the topic of conversation, she might have wanted to leave a little to the imagination.
Lili Reinhart’s Sappy Nighttime Birthday Poem
Actress and author Lili Reinhart is best known for appearing in the series Riverdale or crime drama Hustlers. But she recently released her very own poetry book called Swimming Lessons: Poems in October 2020, where she explores themes of “young love, anxiety, depression, fame, and heartbreak.” But she gave her fans a taste of writing style in this Instagram post before deleting it.
This picture of actor and boyfriend Cole Sprouse had the caption: “I tried to find a poem that I could send to you. Because my words were failing me. But I searched and found nothing that did you justice. All of these love poems can’t get it right. No one else’s words could ever fit. They haven’t known the fortune it is to love you. – sappy nighttime birthday poem for Cole Sprouse.” Obviously, these words didn’t do him justice either.
James Franco Sets Pulses Racing
James Franco pushed Instagram to its limits with this racy photo. While taking a topless bathroom selfie, he nearly completely exposed himself by pulling down on his white boxer briefs. We’ve spared you the full photo exposing his “man-scaping.”
Posted at 11:28 pm, it’s possible James was just making a bad late-night decision. But his caption, which simply read: “JUMP ROPE,” only left his fans feeling more confused. According to his followers, who are frequently exposed to topless photos of him on Instagram, the sweaty chest was just a step too far. And so, James swiftly removed the post.
Willow Smith Upsets a Lot of People
Willow Smith didn’t think about the backlash she would get when she posted these photos to Instagram. These candid shots of her hanging out on set with another actor caused controversy when people realized the guy’s age. His name is Moises Arias, and he’s a friend of Willow’s.
But he’s 20 years old in this photo, while Willow was 13. While nothing much is happening between them, they are lying in bed together and he’s not wearing an awful lot. After the comment section went wild, the photo was quickly deleted. Out of sight, out of mind.