Beauty brand HD Brows took a deep dive into 2022’s most searched beauty problems, and acne came out as the most troubling dilemma.
Acne is getting worse’ tops the table as the most curious beauty worry, with 8.7 million views on YouTube and over 60 monthly searches on Google.
This curious dilemma is likely not helped by hype around extraction videos, which involve experts removing cysts, pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, and so on. The number of people that find them satisfying rolls into the millions – in fact the hashtag #pimplepopping has over 33.8 billion views on TikTok.
But why do so many people find these videos so fascinating? Well to put it simply, they make us feel happy due to dopamine, the feel-good hormone, being released into our systems.
HD Brows has compiled a list of the many reasons social media users are so hooked on this kind of content:
It makes you feel good
When you pop your own spots, your brain releases dopamine, the feel good hormone. Your brain gets a sense of relaxation and relief from popping spots. So, even though we aren’t supposed to be popping spots for hygiene and potential acne scarring reasons, our brains actually love the satisfaction of popping those gooey pimples.
This works in the same way when we watch someone else pop a pimple, cyst, blackhead, or whitehead on a magnified TikTok video.
Extraction videos satisfy our inner curiosity
Watching pimple popping and medical procedures satisfies our natural curiosity. It gives us a sense of inclusion by seeing we are not alone in suffering with acne, pimples, blackheads, or whiteheads.
In watching a pimple ooze with white pus, ones brain is filled with happiness for the person getting rid of the spot, but you also feel satisfied for your own personal curiosity as our brains are programmed to be drawn to things that we shouldn’t be watching.
We asked Jamie Long, Lead Stylist at HD Brows, what to do if your acne is getting worse:
“If you’re struggling with worsening acne, it’s important to not wash the affected area more than twice a day. Dermatologists recommend using lukewarm water to wash your face only when you wake up and before you go to bed, as overwashing can irritate the skin and make it worse.
“A good, consistent cleansing routine is also necessary for keeping your skin healthy and blemish free. If you are still experiencing recurring problems with spot breakouts, it is best to consult an expert dermatologist who can safely remove spots and also advise on the best after care treatment based on your skin type.”
“You should also resist the urge to pop, touch, or pick at your acne, as this can lead to further spreading and also cause scarring.”
Jamie adds why we shouldn’t be popping our own spots and how to prevent breakouts:
“Popping spots – whether on your face or body – can spread bacteria and cause inflammation of the skin, potentially resulting in scarring.
“I know how tempting it can be to pop any spots that crop up on our face and bodies, yet doing it wrong can lead to more problems further down the line.
“Once you’ve popped the spot you are leaving it open to the elements which can lead to infection. It can also make the area look worse as the spot will become raised and inflamed depending on the size of the spot you’ve popped.”