Dermatologists are quite unified in their campaign against pimple popping. But if it makes you feel better and gets rid of some of the gunk hiding in your zits, you may wonder what all the fuss is about. How could popping be so bad? It turns out that popping pimples can cause more problems than it solves.
Long story short, picking, popping, squeezing and scratching your zits can lead to infection. As you squeeze your pimple, you could be squishing dirt, oil and bacteria deeper into your skin, which can lead to even more redness and swelling. Moreover, all that popping can just irritate your acne, making it even worse and longer-lasting. Finally, popping that pimple yourself can lead to scarring, which may stick around longer than the pimple would have.
Don't think that covering your fingers with tissues or latex gloves will be enough to avoid all these problems, either. It's very easy for your nails and fingers to rip right through these, allowing them to dig into your skin and cause scarring. Plus, your hands have oils and dirt of their own, and you run the risk of transferring all of that ickiness, causing new zits and irritating existing ones.
It might feel like that zit on your face is taunting you, but before you start digging at it, remember to consider your options. If you can't talk yourself out of popping it, at least try to take the time to do it properly so that you don't wind up in a worse situation than when you started.
For more information, follow the links below.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
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- American Academy of Dermatology. "Acne." (Accessed 9/1/09) http://www.aad.org/public/publications/pamphlets/common_acne.html
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- New Zealand Dermatological Society. "Comedones." DermNet NZ. (Accessed 9/1/09) http://dermnetnz.org/acne/comedones.html
- Robertson, Annabelle. "9 Skin Care Myths." (Accessed 9/1/09) http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/features/9-skin-care-myths
- WebMD. "Skin and Hair Care for Women of " (Accessed 9/1/09) http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/skin-hair-care-women-of-color
- WebMD. "Teen Acne: Prescription Treatments for Acne." (Accessed 9/1/09) http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/teen-acne-prescription-treatments
- Wechsler, Amy, MD. "Treating Mild Acne and Popping Pimples." The Tyra Banks Show. (Accessed 9/1/09) http://tyrashow.warnerbros.com/2007/03/treating_mild_acne_and_popping.php