What Your Favorite Gross Instagram Account Says About You

by Eliza Castile

Something is rotten in the state of the Internet, and it's probably your obsession with gross Instagram accounts. Yes, I'm calling you out right now. You think other people don't know about all those pimple popping accounts you follow? The photos of poorly done taxidermy you liked at 3 a.m.? The teeth cleaning videos you watch in lieu of actually cleaning your teeth? Trust me. You're not as subtle as you think. (Mostly because other users can see who you follow on Instagram.)

The good news is that plenty of other people share these twisted interests, even if they might not admit it polite company. The Instagram account of Dr. Sandra Lee, whom you may otherwise know as Dr. Pimple Popper, has more two and a half million followers, and that's just the tip (head?) of the iceberg. As the dermatologist's videos have exploded in popularity faster than the pimples she pops, other people have followed suit with their own gross-yet-appealing accounts. Some would say that videos of blackhead extractions and ingrown hair removals are more gag-worthy than satisfying, but to each their own and all that jazz.

If you count yourself among the ranks of the ickiness obsessed, you may wonder what your favorite gross Instagram account says about your own state of mind. Here is the answer.

Pimple Popping

The undisputed king of gross Instagram accounts, pimple popping videos have a surprisingly widespread appeal. According to psychologists, they're so popular because they follow the same rewarding trajectory as a suspenseful movie: anxiety and anticipation building up to a moment of relief (the pop). If you're inclined toward pimple popping, you're something of an adrenaline junkie. When you're not catching up on the activities of Dr. Pimple Popper, you're watching horror movies or waiting in line for a roller coaster. But your interests aren't too out-there. Pimple popping is, after all, pretty mainstream.

Ingrown Hair

You cut your teeth on pimple popping, but eventually, it wasn't enough. It was time to move on to the even grosser and more uncomfortable field of ingrown hair removal. You're a messy person — not unhygienic, but disorganized — and have an appetite for chaos. You're a fabulous storyteller, with an unparalleled ability to see things through to the end. Also, you have an incredibly strong stomach. Duh.

Teeth Cleaning

When you were a kid, you were always the one who worried about keeping their clothes pristine. It takes a truly terrible day for you to be seen in anything less than a blowout and full business casual. You probably even flossed before you got into teeth cleaning videos, you type A fiend.


You're innately curious, with a burning desire to see below the surface of things. In the case of radiology Instagram accounts, that surface is the human skin. If you don't work in medicine, you spend your off-time binging medical dramas.

Bad Taxidermy

Years ago, Crappy Taxidermy created its own genre of gross Instagram accounts by collecting evidence of, well, crappy taxidermy. If that's up your alley, you're an avowed devotee of all that is creepy. Horror movies? Check. Sinister rituals? Been there, done that (when you were, like, 15). Your dream is to work in a haunted house one day and preside over a collection of your own stuffed, dead animals.

Scalp Treatments

There's no feeling quite as soothing as having your hair combed out, but watching scalp treatment videos is the next best thing in your mind. You're empathetic to a fault, which is why you so thoroughly enjoy watching those flakes fall, and more than a little fastidious. Before you got into yoga, you were a bit twitchy, always picking at lint and dry skin.

Ear Wax Removal

You, my strange friend, are pretty chill. You prefer to let bygones be bygones rather than letting grudges build up. Probably because the only thing you like to see built up is ear wax.

Cooking Fails

Whether you're a devotee of Cooking for Bae or a more niche cooking fail account, you know good food when you see it. That also means you know bad food when you look in its gooey, burnt, stretchy face (which will haunt your nightmares for days afterward). Masochist much?