According to researcher Jane Manchun Wong, she has discovered that Instagram is working on disappearing messages. As its description implies, this will allow users to send DMs to each other that will disappear after a period of time. Based on her discovery, it seems that this will work as an alternate mode in DMs, where users can switch between regular DM mode and disappearing message mode.
Wong claims that the version she discovered is still a barebones version, which Instagram later confirmed themselves when they replied to Wong’s post on Twitter by saying, “We’re always exploring new features to improve your messaging experience. This feature is still in early development and not testing externally just yet!”
It is unclear when the feature will be rolled out to users, if at all, but as Wong’s discovery and Instagram’s comments suggest, given its early development, perhaps it will be a while before we see it released to the public.