It’s tempting, but popping or squeezing a pimple won’t necessarily reduce the problem. Squeezing can push bacteria and pus deeper into the skin, which might cause more swelling and redness. Squeezing also can lead to scabs and might leave you with permanent pits or scars.

Skin picking and pimple popping is a bad habit that everyone has likely had before. This behavior comes in a lot in our practice and can be treated in two ways: First, in order to break that bad habit and heal your skin, you should try experimenting with short periods of no pick zones for a week at a time. Sometimes, it’s just a matter of seeing results, the cause and effect, if you will.

Dr. Jochen explains everything you need to know about acne.

The second way to treat a pimple popping habit is to use a benzoyl peroxide cream. A 5% benzoyl peroxide cream applied twice a day will help you deal with the habit because the pimple will be less noticeable and dry up faster.

Another issue with skin picking and popping is that each zit is like a ball of oil, debris and bacteria that is sitting in your skin. Popping a zit and pushing out these disgusting toxins can lead to them affecting other pores causing more breakouts. The opposite of this can also happen when pinching these bumps causing the toxins to intrude inward initiating a possible infection.

The American Academy of Dermatology reports that by the mid-teen years, over 40% of people will have some form of acne or acne scarring. That’s 4 out of 10 people will experience the pimple popping syndrome!

Some tips to break the cycle:

  • Treat existing breakouts with acne products. For example, the Drying Lotion was designed to help dry up existing whiteheads while the Drying Cream is excellent at combating those under-the-surface bumps and pimples.
  • Don’t spend unnecessary time in front of the mirror.
  • Find a good quality concealer to cover blemishes.
  • Relieve anxiety in a different, more constructive way.
  • Hold yourself accountable.

Popping really isn’t the way to go, patience is the key. Your pimple will disappear on its own, and by leaving it alone you’re less likely to be left with any reminders that it was there.

If you’re concerned about acne, talk to your doctor or a dermatologist.

* Results and your patient experience may vary