Why do humans love popping pimples?

acne pimples

Disgust developed to prevent sickness and poisoning. Philosophy professor and author Daniel Kelly told PopSci that humans avoid rotting food because it might make us ill.

Author: Our forefathers survived by acquiring distaste. Blood, saliva, and pus aren’t hazardous, yet they might make us feel nauseous or disgusted.

Pimples, caused by blocked sebaceous glands, are another example of how people sense disgust. Some individuals loathe pus and love—or despise—picking their pimples.

Poppers are another group. They squeeze, watch YouTube pimple-popping compilations, and follow dermatologists on social media. TikTok’s “#pimplepopping” has 16 billion views.

A scholarly paper explains why some individuals appreciate popping pimples more than others. Austrian researchers say it depends on the brain.

38 “pimple popping” enthusiasts and 42 disapprovers viewed 96 clips. They showed burst pimples, water flowing out of a drinking fountain (to mimic pus) and steam cleaning (simply because it was satisfying to watch).

The scientists utilized fMRI to assess four sensations: pleasure in popping pimples, disgust, reward, and punishment.

Fans of “pimple popping” videos are more sensitive to reward and have better disgust regulation than detractors.

Anyone who loves to squeeze or burst pimples feels more thrill when the pus comes out, as if it were a prize. They’re less repulsed. The findings match volunteer brain imaging.

Nucleus accumbens and insula control pleasure and disgust, according to scans. Increased insula-accumbens connection may help regulate unpleasantness, say researchers. All individuals felt repulsed by the movies, according to the research.

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