Why are we fascinated by popping zits?
You like it, but you don’t want to admit you like it–watching buttery yellow goo squeezed out of someone’s skin like Easy Cheese. Don’t worry if the sight of zits popping does something for you. Seeing the millions of views Dr. Pimple Popper (a.k.a. dermatologist Dr. Sandra Lee) is getting on YouTube, you’re far from the only one interested in watching cysts, blackheads, and lipomas being extracted.
Many of us, including yours truly, first discovered the joys of popping pimples during puberty. We had a love-hate relationship with our zits. It was embarrassing to have breakouts on our faces when trying to impress a crush, yet simultaneously, in the privacy of our bathrooms, we secretly loved squeezing out those darn whiteheads and blackheads. Sometimes they squiggled out like worms, but the best ones shot out like bullets. My mom got after me numerous times for not cleaning up the mirror in the wake of my more spectacular pops.
Presently, I’m grateful to leave my zit popping days behind, but like many of you, I get a kick out of watching other people’s pimples perfectly popped by Dr. Pimple Popper. Granted, the zits you see her treat are extreme, ranging anywhere in size from golf balls to tennis balls. However, despite their grossness, we’re drawn to pimple popping like an accident on the roadway, the bigger the better. It’s amazing what our bodies can produce.
What is it about popping zits that captivates us? Maybe it’s the cathartic feeling we get from seeing all that ooze come out, the same kind of feeling we get when we cry during some movies. When you stop and think about it, a pimple pop has all the elements of great drama. There’s the inciting incident (the zit), the rising action (squeezing the zit), the climax (the zit content spewing forth), the falling action (the removal of the zit sack), and the denouement (the skin being stitched). The pimple is a problem that’s addressed and eventually overcome. Why can’t all of life’s problems end as well as a popped zit?