People with acne are less likely to be hired, dated or befriended due to ‘anti-acne bias’, study finds.

People with acne are less likely to be hired, dated or befriended due to ‘anti-acne bias’, study finds.

By Luke Andrews Health Correspondent for Dailymail.Com

17:15 06 December 2023, updated 18:04 06 December 2023

A study found that people with acne are less likely to get hired, date, or make friends easily compared to those with clear skin.

Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Massachusetts also found that people are less likely to post photos of themselves online.

In this study, researchers recruited 1,300 people and showed them a photo of a clear-skinned person with mild or severe acne – before asking them a series of questions.

People stigmatize those with acne, the researchers said, and urged health insurance companies to cover its treatment. Nowadays, most consider it a “cosmetic issue.”

The woman’s face shown in the study has clear skin
The face of a woman in the study shows severe acne
The face of a man with clear skin
The face of a man suffering from severe acne

Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, with 50 million Americans suffering from it annually.

The disease usually first strikes around puberty and affects teenagers and young adults, leaving them with small or large red bumps on their skin, oily pimples and scaly skin bumps.

This condition results from hair follicles becoming clogged with oil or dead skin cells, which can be a result of changes in hormones such as testosterone, some cosmetics, and some medications.

An injection once a month can relieve the suffering of debilitating acne

Patients with acne can get an injection to help treat the condition.

Treatment includes a selection of creams, antibiotic tablets and injections, but some patients can suffer from the condition for years.

In severe cases, patients may suffer from scarring on the skin, which they will continue to suffer from for the rest of their lives.

In the study published today in JAMA Dermatology, researchers digitally modified photos of the faces of four adults to show examples of clear skin and mild and severe acne.

Participants, They were recruited via social media, shown one of 12 images and questioned about their response.

They were asked whether they agreed or disagreed with several statements including “I would feel comfortable with someone like this in a photo I post on social media,” “I wouldn’t mind being in close contact with this person,” and “I would feel.” It’s comforting to be friends with the person in this photo.

Two of the photos were of people of color to measure how responses differed when skin tone was included.

Participants were predominantly white, female, approximately 42 years of age and from a higher educational background.

The results showed that for the picture of severe acne, only 25% of participants strongly agreed to date the person.

By comparison, for people with lighter skin, 45% strongly agreed they would date the person.

Just under 60% of participants strongly agreed that they would be happy to post a photo of someone with acne on their social media, compared to 65% of those with clear skin.

When hiring someone, only 50 percent said they strongly agreed with hiring someone with severe acne compared to 65 percent of those with clear skin.

Face of a woman with clear skin
A woman’s face with severe acne
The face of a man with clear skin
The face of a man suffering from severe acne

The responses also showed that the majority of participants said they thought people with severe acne were unattractive and had poor hygiene.

The researchers found that participants also showed a greater desire to socially distance themselves from individuals with acne and dark skin.

A statistical analysis was also performed, with results adjusted for age, sex, and gender of the study population. This also showed that people were more likely to avoid those with severe acne compared to those with clear skin.

The researchers found that there was no evidence of an association by gender, but people were more likely to be hostile toward people with darker skin who also had acne.

“Our findings show that stigmatizing attitudes about acne can impair quality of life, possibly by affecting personal relationships and employment opportunities,” said Dr. John Barbieri, a dermatologist who led the study.

Acne is often wrongly viewed as just a cosmetic problem.

“It is important that people with this medical problem get treatment, just like any other condition.”

He added: “Many insurance companies do not cover acne and rosacea treatments well, claiming that they are cosmetics.

“Our study highlights the need to change this narrative and identify approaches to reduce stigmatizing attitudes in society.”

Limitations of the study included that it surveyed mostly white women, which may not reflect the entire population.

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