Pimple popping gets explosive in this graphic acne treatment ad

Work from Differin from Deutsch N.Y. follows trend of zit-squeezing content on social media and TV

Published On
Apr 13, 2021

Editor's Pick

Things are getting real in advertising these days when it comes to bodily functions; from Phillips' laxative ad that discussed having a "good poop" to campaigns for sanitary products depicting real blood (such as Libresse's BloodNormal). Now, pimple popping is having its moment in a new acne treatment ad.

The campaign for Galderma's Differin brand, created via Deutsch New York, shows people squeezing their spots juxtaposed with scenes of volcanoes erupting, geysers exploding, fireworks detonating, champagne corks popping and more. "We can't make you stop, but we can get rid of the marks your acne left behind," says the voiceover, before the spot promotes the products, Differin’s Dark Spot Correcting Serum and Resurfacing Scar Gel.

The ad does follows the zit-squeezing trend we've seen in pop culture in recent years. Dr. Sandra Lee, aka "Dr. Pimple Popper," gathered a cult following with her videos on social media and even has her own TV show on TLC. Last year (as reported by The Sun) pimple squeezing videos were rife on TikTok, and in 2015 there was also a vogue for so-called popping videos

"People love to pop pimples. It’s cringeworthy, but true,” said Deutsch N.Y. Chief Creative Officer Dan Kelleher in a statement. “Unfortunately, pimple-popping sprees can leave acne spots behind. Our Acne Aftermath campaign for Differin lets pimple poppers everywhere know there is a remedy for acne scars. You’ll never look at popping pimples the same after seeing this.”


Apr 13, 2021
Client :
Agency :
Deutsch-New York
Director Differin OTC US :
Katherine Rouse
Senior Brand Manager :
Jeffrey Daly
Chief Creative Officer :
Dan Kelleher
Executive Creative Director :
George Decker
Associate Creative Director :
Jessica Lomasson
Associate Creative Director :
Allison Navon
EVP Director of Integrated Production :
Joe Calabrese
Producer :
Halley Mangano
SVP Director of Creative Services :
Sarah Mana
Executive Print Producer :
Jeanette Luis
Print Producer :
Melissa Becantur
Designer and Retoucher :
Zoe Gillette
Lead Motion Designer :
Danny Kamhaji
SVP Group Planning Director :
Michelle Rowley
Associate Director Strategy :
Alexis Madison
Senior Strategist Strategy :
Caroline Jordan
EVP Group Account Director :
Tyler J. Helms
SVP Account Director :
Kristen Rincavage
Account Director :
Marie Komori
Account Executive :
Maria Rivadeneira
Integrated Business Affairs VP Group Director :
Stacy Schwartz
Business Manager :
Sara Jurman
Production Company :
Gravy Films
Owner/Executive Producer :
Brent Stoller
Staff Production Coordinator :
Becky Bradshaw
Director :
Crobin Leo
Producer :
Bo Clancey
Editorial :
Great Machine
Editor :
Cindy Nelson
Assistant Editor :
Tony Scharko
Post Producer :
Zack Herpy
Music/Licensed Music Tracks :
Music Arrangement by Human
Arranger and Creative Lead :
Matthew O’Malley
Executive Producer :
James Dean Wells
Sound Designer/Mixer :
Marc Healy
End Tag Animation/Graphics Company :
Great Machine

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