The Importance of Cleaning Up Your Social Media

By Brittany Loeffler on February 21, 2017

Social media has ingrained itself into society during the last decade. It’s a way to connect and keep up with people you don’t see often, receive news updates, share your opinions, and much more.

If you are thinking about applying to jobs or colleges, it’s important to go through and clean up your social media accounts.

via Pixabay

Why Clean Up

People put their lives up on the Internet for everyone to see, and employers and college admissions offices have started to use social media to determine whether an applicant is a good fit for the company or school. Social media allows these professionals to see your social life and who you really are, not just what you put on your resume.

Your social media accounts can cost you a job if an employer likes your resume, but does not like what he sees you doing on the weekends. It’s important to always present yourself professionally and respectfully.

Your social media is not your secret diary; it is a billboard of who you are and what you do.

Google Yourself

So, where should you start when cleaning up your social media accounts? Google!

Search yourself on the most popular search engine and see what comes up. Make sure to check out the images that come up with your name too.

via Pixabay

The Criteria

There isn’t an official set of rules for what should and should not be on social media. There are some simple guidelines to follow, though.


Make sure the majority your pictures don’t have any bottles of alcohol or drinks in them, especially if you are under 21 years old. It’s okay to have a picture or two of you with a drink on a Saturday night, but if all of your pictures are you at the club, how do you think that represents you to a stranger?

Rants and Bad Mouthing

Delete any posts where you rant about something, especially a former job or teacher. Employers want to know that you will be respectful after working for them and can remain professional. Employers also want someone who has a positive attitude.

The Grandma Test

If you still aren’t sure what is considered inappropriate, do the Grandma Test. Ask yourself, would you be comfortable if your Grandma saw that picture of you or the post you just shared? If not, delete it.


Jim Rohn once said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”

Go through the friends and connections you have on social media. Ask yourself; do you want to be associated with that person? If not, delete them!

Employers and college admissions teams will go through your friends lists to see what kind of people you hang out with. Back in the day when social media first came out, it was the thing to be friends with everyone, but now it is about keeping in touch with people you actually know.

via Pixabay


Go through your pictures. That means albums, posts, and tagged photos. Your friends may not worry about what is on their social media (so you should send them this article right away!) and will post inappropriate pictures of you from last weekend.

If you see a picture that you are tagged in that may be incriminating against you, ask your friend to take it down and un-tag yourself. If they are your friends, they will understand and delete the picture.


Read through the statuses you have made over the years. It may make you cringe to see the text lingo you used five years ago, but it’s important to go through. A status is a quote from you — those words came from your person. If you see something offensive or insulting towards others, delete it!

Imagine your statuses being posted on a billboard with your picture beside it; would you be ashamed?

Privacy Settings

Every social media platform has privacy settings that can be altered. Make your profile private or only so your friends can see your information. Restrict people tagging you in photos until you approve the picture.

Stay Professional

After all of your hard work to clean up your social media, keep it clean! You don’t want to ruin your newly polished profiles with a picture or a status you wrote when you were having a bad day.

Always be conscious about what you put on the Internet, because it is easy to dig up information you think you may have deleted.

Follow Uloop

Apply to Write for Uloop News

Join the Uloop News Team

Discuss This Article

Back to Top

Log In

Contact Us

Upload An Image

Please select an image to upload
Note: must be in .png, .gif or .jpg format
Provide URL where image can be downloaded
Note: must be in .png, .gif or .jpg format

By clicking this button,
you agree to the terms of use

By clicking "Create Alert" I agree to the Uloop Terms of Use.

Image not available.

Add a Photo

Please select a photo to upload
Note: must be in .png, .gif or .jpg format