How to Save GIFs on iPhone in 2022: iPhone GIF Download 101

Learn how to download GIFs on your iPhone. I'll even teach you how to save a GIF from Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, GIPHY, the Messages app, and more!

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

GIFs are a fun way to communicate with your loved ones. In this article, I will teach you how to download and save GIFs from Twitter, Facebook, iMessages, and other common apps. With your favorite GIFs saved to your Photos app, you can easily share them with others. Let's learn how to save GIFs; it's easy!

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How to Save GIF in iPhone

I say that it's easy to learn how to download a GIF on iPhones because, in most cases, you can tap and hold the GIF until a menu pops up with an option to save or download it. If you're wondering what GIFs are, skip to the last section of this article. Saving iMessage GIFs, for example, works if you:

  1. Open the Messages app.

    Open the Messages app.
  2. Locate the text thread with the GIF you wish to download and open it.

    Locate the text thread - how to save animated gif on iphone
  3. Tap and hold the GIF.

    Tap and hold the GIF - how to save gif iphone
  4. Tap Save.

    Tap Save - how to save gif on iphone
  5. Open your Photos app.

    Open your Photos app - saving a gif on iphone
  6. You should see a still version of the image. 

    see a still version - iphone save gif
  7. If you tap on it, you’ll see the animation.

    If you tap on it, you’ll see the animation.

This method also works for GIFs you find online if you are using Chrome, Safari, or Firefox internet browsers.

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How to Download a GIF from Popular Apps & Websites

Most apps make it really easy to download GIFs. You usually just tap and hold the GIF, then select "save GIF to gallery," "download GIF," or an option with similar verbiage. Below you can find app-specific steps. To skip to the specific app you're interested in, tap it here: Tumblr, WhatsApp, GIPHY, Reddit, Facebook, and Facebook Messenger.

How to Save GIFs Tumblr

Tumblr is another popular app where you can save GIFs. Since you can use the Tumblr website without an account, I'll only teach you how to save GIFs from Tumblr if you use the website. Just find the GIF you wish to save, then tap and hold it until you see the option to Add to Photos.

Tumblr - how to download gifs on iphone

Here is what it looks like when you open it in the Photos app!

Tumblr - saving gifs on iphone

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How to Save a GIF from WhatsApp on iPhone

To download a GIF from WhatsApp, you have to tap the GIF, then tap the share icon, and tap Save. 

WhatsApp - iphone saving gifs

Here is what it looks like when you open it in the Photos app!

WhatsApp - how do i download an animated gif

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How to Download GIPHY GIFs

Whether you have the GIPHY app (free) or use the GIPHY website, it is easy to download the GIFs you like most. The GIPHY GIF download process is simple. If you use the website, tap the GIF and then the three dots on the right side below the GIF. Then tap and hold the image until the menu pops up to select Add to Photos.

GIPHY - how to download from gify

If you use the GIPHY app, just select the GIF you wish to download and tap the share icon on the right side below the image. Then tap the other share icon in the top right, then select Save Image.

GIPHY - download gifs from gify

Here is what it looks like when you open it in the Photos app!

GIPHY - save gfycat gif

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How to Download Twitter GIFs

Those who wonder how to download GIFs from Twitter (free) have a bit of a long journey to save a GIF on iPhone:

  1. Open the App Store on your iPhone.

    Open the App Store - download online gif
  2. Search for GIFwrapped and tap GET.

    GIFwrapped and tap GET - save gifs on iphone
  3. Double-press your Home or Side button or enter your Apple ID password to Install the app.

    Double-press your Home button
  4. Open Twitter.

    Open Twitter.
  5. Find the GIF you wish to save and tap the share icon.

    Tap the share icon.
  6. Select Copy Link. You will see a Copied to Clipboard notification appear briefly.

    Select Copy Link - download gif iphone
  7. Open GIFwrapped.

    Open GIFwrapped.
  8. If this is the first time you are using it, you'll have to toggle enable iCloud Drive on or off, then tap Continue. I will leave it toggled off because I don't need my GIFs.

    toggle enable iCloud Drive off
  9. Paste the link in the Search bar. To do this, tap the search bar, tap and hold until the paste option pops up, then tap Paste. Next, tap Search.

    Tap Search.
  10. You may see multiple results; select the one you want to save.

    select the one you want to save.
  11. Tap the share icon.

    Tap the share icon.
  12. Tap Share Image. If you select Save to Library, it will save to the app's library only.

    Tap Share Image.
  13. Select Save to Photos.

    Tap Share Image.
  14. The first time you do this, you’ll have to give the app permission to access your photos. I like to select Allow Access to All Photos so that I don’t have to do this more than once.

    Allow Access to All Photos
  15. You can find the GIF in your Photos app.

    how to save a gif to iphone

While GIFwrapped (free) is my preferred app to download GIFs from Twitter, there are similar apps that make saving a GIF on Twitter possible. I like this one because it can be an excellent place to store GIFs and easily share them with others without saving them to your Photos App. You can also try this online GIF downloader for Twitter.

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How to Download GIFs from Reddit

Reddit is a valuable crowdsourcing website, but it is also a fun place to find GIFs! Unlike Twitter, using GIFwrapped (free) to save Reddit GIFs won’t work. You’ll have to use Apollo for Reddit (free) instead. Once you find a GIF you wish to download, tap and hold it and select Download GIF…

select Download GIF…. how to download gif for iphone

Then a new menu will pop up that lets you select Save GIF.

Reddit - how to download gif on iphone

Here is what it looks like when you open it in the Photos app! The first time you do this, you’ll have to give the app permission to access your photos.

download gifs on iphone

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How Do You Save a GIF From Facebook

Facebook is home to many fun GIFs and even entire groups dedicated to them! This method works on the Facebook app (free) and the browser version of Facebook. To do this:

  1. Open the Facebook app and locate the GIF you wish to save.

    Open the Facebook
  2. Tap on the source of the GIF at the bottom left of the image.

    Tap on the source of the GIF
  3. This will open it in a new browser. Tap and hold the GIF.

    Tap and hold the GIF.
  4. A menu will appear with the option to Add to Photos.

    Add to Photos
  5. You can now see it in your Photos app!

    You can now see it in your Photos app!

Pro Tip: Downloading a GIF from Facebook Messenger (free) is also simple. You can tap on the GIF, tap Edit in the top right corner, then tap Save. Unfortunately, this will download the GIF as a video.

Facebook Messenger gif - download gif from facebook online

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What Are GIFs Exactly?

GIF stands for Graphics Interchange Format, and GIFs have been around for over 30 years now. GIFs are an image file type similar to JPEG or JPG, except they are animated. The Shortcuts app on your iPhone has a Make GIF option in the Starter Shortcuts section. This file type is small in size, unlike videos, and is usually used to indicate moods or reactions like how you might use emojis or memes.

Fun fact: while most people pronounce them with a "g" like in give. But the creator, Steve Wilhite, wanted it to be JIF pronounced with a "j"; however, that was too similar to Jiff, the popular brand of peanut butter. It is often debated whether it's pronounced with a "g" or "j" so you can expect someone to contradict whichever version you pick.

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Now you know how to save a GIF on iPhone apps such as Messages (iMessages), Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger GIPHY, Reddit, Tumblr, and Twitter. Plus, I taught you an almost universal GIFs download method that works on most browsers and many third-party apps! If you like to keep GIFs in your Photos app, I recommend that you create a photo Album to keep them organized! Next, learn how to send GIFs from the Messages app on your iPhone, or even better, send them directly from an Apple Watch!

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Author Details

Conner Carey's picture

Author Details

Conner Carey

Conner Carey's writing can be found at conpoet.com. She is currently writing a book, creating lots of content, and writing poetry via @conpoet on Instagram. She lives in an RV full-time with her mom, Jan and dog, Jodi as they slow-travel around the country.