The Complete Guide to Deleting Videos on TikTok (Permanently or Privately)

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Have you ever panicked after posting an embarrassing video on TikTok that you now want erased from the internet forever? Or maybe you just want to do some housekeeping and remove outdated videos from your profile.

Whatever your reason for wanting to delete TikTok videos, this in-depth guide will teach you how to remove videos from your account the right way.

Here’s what we’ll cover in this comprehensive tutorial:

  • The pros and cons of deleting old TikTok videos
  • Step-by-step instructions to delete videos in the app and website
  • How to make videos private instead of deleting
  • Recovering recently deleted videos
  • Permanently deleting your account and all videos
  • Potential risks and precautions to know before deleting

By the end of this 2800+ word guide, you’ll be a pro at cleaning up your TikTok profile and managing your online presence. Let’s do this!

Should You Delete Old TikTok Videos?

Before we dive into the how of deleting TikTok videos, let‘s explore the why. Here are some potential pros and cons of removing old videos from your profile:

Pros of Deleting Videos

Refresh your Profile – Deleting old, irrelevant videos allows you to showcase your best, most recent content. Trimming the fluff helps you curate a strong profile.

Maintain Your Brand – If old videos showing a different style or tone no longer fit your brand, deleting them helps keep your profile consistent.

Free Up Storage Space – The TikTok app can take up significant storage space on your phone over time. Removing unneeded videos can free up storage.

Increase Engagement – Getting rid of stale videos that aren‘t getting engagement anymore makes room for hot new videos to shine.

Protect Your Privacy – Deleting videos that contain private details orsensitive content protects your privacy if you change your mind on sharing certain moments.

Cons of Deleting Videos

Lose Valuable Data – Deleting older videos removes any likes, comments, and analytics data associated with them. This data can provide useful insights.

Time Consuming – Having to manually select and delete each video is tedious and time consuming, especially if you want to mass delete.

Videos Could Be Reposted – If someone downloaded your video before you deleted it, they could potentially re-upload or share it.

No Guarantee of Removal – Once content is on the internet, it can live on even after deleting. TikTok servers may retain deleted video copies.

Can‘t Retrieve It – When a gem of a video is gone, it‘s likely gone. Recovering deleted TikTok videos is difficult and often impossible.

As you can see, there are pros and cons to weigh when considering deleting old videos. Having an intentional deletion strategy is key.

When Should You Delete TikTok Videos?

Based on the pros and cons, here are some appropriate times to remove videos from your profile:

  • The video contains private, embarrassing, or sensitive content you no longer wish to share publicly.
  • The video shows a different creative style that no longer fits your brand.
  • The video features a trend or topic that is now irrelevant or outdated.
  • You posted the video as a draft and are ready to replace it with the final version.
  • The video is not generating engagement anymore and is stale compared to newer content.

And when might you want to keep an old video posted?

  • The video provides important context related to your current content.
  • The video still garners decent engagement that contributes to your overall stats.
  • The video reflects creative milestones or showcases talents you want to preserve.
  • You don‘t have the video file backed up anywhere and want to hold onto it.

In general, if the video no longer contributes value to your overall profile and brand, deletion is probably the way to go.

Now let‘s get into the step-by-step for how to delete videos on TikTok.

Deleting TikTok Videos in the Mobile App

If you primarily use TikTok on iOS or Android, deleting videos through the mobile app is a breeze.

Here is an easy step-by-step process:

Step 1: Open the TikTok app on your device and tap your profile icon in the bottom right corner.

Step 2: This will take you to your profile page where you can browse your videos. Tap on the video you want to remove.

Step 3: Tap the share arrow icon below the video.

Step 4: In the share menu that opens, tap the delete icon (trash can) in the bottom right corner.

Step 5: A popup will ask “Delete this video?” Tap the red “Delete” button to confirm.

And voila! That video is now removed from your TikTok profile and will no longer appear publicly. Rinse and repeat to delete multiple videos one by one.

Here is a handy step-by-step recap:

Delete a TikTok Video in App

  1. Tap your profile icon
  2. Tap the video you want to delete
  3. Tap the share arrow
  4. Tap the delete icon
  5. Confirm deletion

Straightforward, right? Now let‘s look at how to remove videos from a desktop browser.

Removing Videos in TikTok‘s Web Version

Don‘t use the TikTok app? You can still delete videos directly from the TikTok website in any desktop browser.

Here are the steps to delete videos on TikTok‘s web version:

Step 1: Go to and log into your TikTok account.

Step 2: Click your profile icon in the top right corner and navigate to your profile page.

Step 3: Scroll through your videos and click on the one you want to delete. This opens the video page.

Step 4: Click the three-dot menu icon below the video.

Step 5: Select “Delete” from the dropdown menu that appears.

Step 6: Confirm that you want to delete the video when prompted.

The process feels a bit more buried on desktop, but it‘s roughly the same clicks – open video, click menu, select delete, confirm.

Here is a recap of the steps to delete a TikTok video from desktop:

Delete a TikTok Video from Desktop

  1. Log into TikTok website
  2. Click your profile
  3. Click the video to delete
  4. Click the three dot menu
  5. Select "Delete"
  6. Confirm deletion

And that‘s it! The video will vanish from your profile page after refreshing.

Okay, but what if you don‘t necessarily want videos gone forever? Making them private hides them instead.

Making TikTok Videos Private Instead of Deleting

Rather than permanently deleting a video, you also have the option to make it private on TikTok. Here‘s how:

Step 1: Open the video you want to make private on your profile.

Step 2: Tap the share icon, then select “Privacy Settings.”

Step 3: Tap “Who Can View This Video” and change the setting to “Only Me.”

Making your video private will prevent it from being viewed publicly on your profile. Only you will be able to see it when signed into your account.

Think of private videos like archiving them – the videos remain safely tucked away in your profile for future use if needed.

📝 Pro Tip

Making videos private instead of deleting allows you to maintain control and access to the video. You can change its visibility back to public any time.

Now let‘s tackle the topic of mass deleting videos from your TikTok account.

How to Delete Multiple TikTok Videos at Once

Have a bunch of outdated videos you need to nuke from your profile stat? Unfortunately, TikTok does not currently have a native bulk delete feature.

To mass delete videos, you‘ll need to manually select and delete each individual video one by one. This can definitely be a tedious and time consuming process.

Some tips to make bulk deleting easier include:

  • Sort videos oldest to newest – This pushes old videos to the top so they are faster to delete in succession.

  • Delete in batches – Going through and deleting 10-20 videos in a sitting makes it less overwhelming.

  • Use video manager – The video manager provides a dashboard overview to help you identify unwanted videos.

While bulk deleting videos on TikTok takes some effort, looking at it as digital decluttering can make the process satisfying!

Permanently Deleting Your TikTok Account

What if you want to nuke your entire TikTok existence and start fresh? The most extreme option is to delete your TikTok account entirely.

However, this will:

  • Permanently delete all videos and data on your profile
  • Remove your username from any videos you are tagged in
  • Erase your account and access so you CANNOT retrieve anything
  • Require you to create a brand new account if you want to return

With those severe consequences in mind, here is how to fully delete your TikTok account:

Step 1: Tap your profile > Settings and Privacy > Manage Account > Delete Account

Step 2: Select “Permanently delete my account”

Step 3: Enter password and confirm deletion

And poof! Your account will vanish along with all of your videos. This is irreversible, so only delete as a last resort. You‘ve been warned!

Recovering Recently Deleted TikTok Videos

Accidentally deleted a TikTok video you now regret? While there‘s no official way to recover deleted videos on TikTok, there are some DIY methods to try:

  • Check your device‘s recently deleted folder – The video file may still be there if you just deleted it from TikTok.

  • Use Google Chrome history – If you viewed the video on desktop, Chrome likely cached it.

  • Lookup web archives – Sites like Wayback Machine periodically archive TikTok pages.

  • Try data recovery apps – Software like Disk Drill can resurrect deleted mobile data.

  • Contact TikTok support – They likely cannot restore videos, but you can always ask!

The easiest method is retrieving the video file from your device‘s recently deleted folder before it‘s totally erased.

🔑 Pro Tip

Always download videos to your camera roll before deleting on TikTok. This guarantees you have a backup copy.

Recovering deleted social media content is challenging though, so backups are key.

Speaking of challenges, let‘s go over some risks and precautions for removing TikTok videos…

Deleting Videos Cautions and Risks

While TikTok makes it simple to delete videos from your account, there are some downsides and risks to keep in mind:

  • Once content hits the internet, it can be impossible to remove all traces of it.

  • Other users may have downloaded or screen recorded your video before you deleted it.

  • Deleted videos may still exist in TikTok‘s server caches and be subpoenaed.

  • Google and other search engines may retain deleted video titles, descriptions, etc. in cached snapshots of profile pages.

  • Deleting tons of videos at once looks suspicious and could get your account flagged.

  • Videos that violate TikTok guidelines can get your account banned even if you delete them.

The key takeaway is to exercise caution when posting any content online. Maintaining copies of videos before deleting from your profile is wise.

And be selective in determining what to delete – some stale videos may still hold value for your TikTok presence.

FAQs About Deleting TikTok Videos

Let‘s round up this guide by answering some commonly asked questions about removing TikTok videos:

Can someone repost my TikTok video if I delete it?

Yes, if another user downloaded or screen recorded your video before you deleted it, they could potentially re-upload it. There is no foolproof way to prevent this on TikTok.

What happens to the likes and comments when I delete a video?

When you delete a video, all likes, shares, comments and other associated data are permanently erased with it. People will not be notified if you delete their comments.

Is there a time limit to delete videos on TikTok after posting?

No, you can delete a TikTok video at any time after posting it. There is no expiration date or time limit for removing old videos.

Can I recover analytics data for deleted TikTok videos?

Unfortunately no. All metrics like views, likes, comments, shares, etc. are permanently removed when you delete a video. TikTok does not have analytics recovery options.

Does TikTok automatically delete old videos?

No, TikTok does not currently have an auto-delete feature for older videos. You must manually select and remove each video you want eliminated.

Recap and Key Takeaways

Let‘s do a quick recap of the key points covered in this guide:

🔹 Weigh pros and cons before deleting to decide if removal is right for each video.

🔹 Deleting on mobile is easy – just tap delete in the share menu.

🔹 On desktop, click the three dots and select delete to remove videos.

🔹 Making videos private just hides them vs. fully deleting.

🔹 You cannot mass delete videos and must remove one by one.

🔹 Permanently deleting your account nukes all videos but makes restoring impossible.

🔹 Recovering recently deleted videos may be possible depending on your situation.

🔹 Exercise caution when posting and deleting videos on any social platform.

Whew, that was a lot of info! The moral of the story is to be intentional about what you share online. Curate your profile by removing stale content over time.

I hope this guide gave you clarity on how to delete videos on TikTok. Now you can clean up your profile and showcase your best content!

What other TikTok tips would you like to learn about? Let me know in the comments!


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.