Instagram recently hit the milestone of over half a billion daily active users, and while the company is playing with new ideas, such as a new standalone messaging service called "Direct", it continues to add a number of features to the photo-sharing network, including the ability to remix their photos by adding stickers, text, and more, archive photos, and more. Earlier today, Instagram added a new feature which gives users the ability to follow hashtags, allowing them to more easily discover and stay up-to-do with topics and interests.
You can follow the hashtags in a similar way as following people. Just search for a topic you’re interested in and it will display the search results listing relevant hashtags. Following the hashtags will display top posts in your Instagram feed along with some of the latest stories in the "stories bar". If you don't know which hashtags to follow, Instagram also lists the hashtags other people follow in their profiles.
For those of you who are concerned about the privacy issues, the hashtags will be visible in your profile. However, if your profile is set to private, the hashtags will only be visible to the people who follow you.