While it may be easy to scoff off an acne fetish with remarks like, “I don’t have that problem,” this condition is more common than properly acknowledged. A fetish is an object of unreasonably obsessive attention or regard. Thus, extreme attention given to zits and pimples characterize an acne fetish. Two clinical forms of an acne fetish include excoriated acne and imagined acne.
Excoriated acne occurs when an acne patient continues to pick at or squeeze acne formations on their face, never allowing the skin to heal. This constant picking aggravates the acne condition and often times leaves severe scarring. Imagined acne happens when a patient is convinced she has acne but in reality does not. This person may have one small pimple and blow the existence of the pimple out of proportion and view it as a severe case of acne.
Underlying both of these acne fetishes is the fear of being ugly, or dysmorphophobia. It’s an easy psychological state to acquire in a society that increasingly places more value on superficial looks than personal traits.
Steps to combating an acne fetish include:
Spending less time self-critiquing in front of the mirror; and
Embellishing your talents.
Even a hiatus from mirror visits may help an acne fetish. If you do look in the mirror, focus on elements of your face besides the zits. For instance, look at the color of your eyes or the size of your lips, without criticizing of course. You may have lovely eyelashes or the perfect eyebrows. Whenever you look in the mirror stop making negative judgments about yourself. If you do find yourself ridiculing yourself and wanting to burst a zit in a rushed desire for clear skin, just remind yourself that every zit that you prematurely pop may encourage the formation of 3 completely new zits.
Focus on your greatest assets as a person, or cultivate new skills. You may be an awesome guitar player or fabulous singer, give yourself recognition for your strengths. Do something that you’ve always wanted to do, but did not do because you felt having acne precludes you from this activity.
In the final analysis, healing an acne fetish starts with recognizing that this condition has serious medical repercussions. An acne fetish can debilitate one’s self-esteem while encouraging needless facial scarring. If you think you have an acne fetish, you can get help from a qualified dermatologist, psychologists or just talk it over with some really cool and understanding friends.