Step 0: Why?
Why do you want to download your data from Facebook?
If your main interest is in photos, you'll find the photos on Facebook are of a lower quality than the originals. So if you are hoping for higher quality images, then try to find the pictures you took. Or if someone else uploaded the pictures, try asking them for copies of the originals.
Otherwise, let's go!
Step 1: Go to the Settings Menu
Log into Facebook, and click on the downward arrow that is on the top right-hand corner of the screen. It's on the blue bar next to the "Help" icon.
Select Settings from the drop-down menu.
Step 2: Download a copy
Check you're in the General Account Settings area, in the menu in the left-hand sidebar.
Click on Download a Copy of your Facebook Data at the bottom. Click on Start My Archive.
Step 3: Authenticate
Facebook will ask you for your password, and then click Start My Archive again.
Wait for Facebook to email you! (You will also get a notification on Facebook itself).
Step 4: Decide where to put your download
While you're waiting, decide on the best place to keep your data. Bear in mind that your download will contain personal data - perhaps sensitive data. So think about whether you are happy with the security and privacy of your chosen place.
As I said in my article on How to Archive Your Instagram, add your download to your Digital Archive. This means that it will simply be swept up in your regular digital hygiene routine, so you don't need to do any more.
Step 5: Download your data
Open the link in your email and select Download Archive.
Step 6: Finish the job
Don't just leave the data in your Downloads folder! Move it to the place you decided on.
Your download will be a .zip file. If you are only interested in a back-up of your data, then it is fine to leave it compressed.
However, if you care about the long-term survival of your stuff, you should extract it.
I hope you found this useful - whether you wanted a back-up or a full archive of your Facebook activity.
If you are an Instagram user as well, you might also enjoy my article on How to Archive Your Instagram. And if you are curious about starting your personal Digital Archive, then here is my mammoth post for beginners. And a free workbook.
I really appreciate you taking the time to read my stuff, so feel free to reach out to me on Twitter! I'd love to say Hi!