Welcome to the hoax archive. When applicable, clicking any photo will take you to the web page that the photo has been recovered from. Use the find function on your device or just scroll down the page to view all.

The Skin Hoax Archive does not check the photo-linked websites for inappropriate content or safety. Follow the links at your own risk.

Lotus Disease

First reported: 2003
The lotus breast was the first known lotus pattern hoax. It was created by photo editing  the pods of a lotus plant onto the human breast. The lotus pattern can be photo edited anywhere on the body, and has been the subject of numerous hoaxes. Some of which make claims about parasites, insects, unwashed clothes, and shampoos.

Lamprey Disease

First reported: 2007
The lamprey fingers were the first example of "lamprey disease", created by photo editing the mouth of a lamprey eel over the tips of the fingers. Like the lotus pattern, the pattern has been used in a multitude of hoaxes, giving rise to "lamprey disease" a fake condition where the pattern is photo edited over various body parts. 

First reported: 2016
The perforated pattern shared by all these images is the trypophobia pattern. It has been used in a variety of hoaxes involving different parts of the body and different causes of the condition, often insects.  The pattern can be created with photo editing tools, but has also been created by special effects artists. One of the tutorial videos on creating the effect has more than 14 million views.

Trypophobia patterns

Blue waffle Disease

First reported: 2013
Blue waffle disease is a fake sexually transmitted disease. However, hoaxers have given it several cutaneous 

manifestations, blue waffle hand and blue waffle face. Here we see a hand turned upwards, and a face affected by the "condition." The special effects for these images have not been sourced yet, but appear to be constructed from blue foam.

Disappearing tick

First reported: 2017
This hoax allegedly began as a a father's cautionary tale to his children about the misinformation online.  He wrote a fictitious claim about a tick that could burrow under the skin and move around the body using two photos which were unrelated to each other. As ticks tend to naturally fall off after biting a person, this myth was likely very concerning for some people. As of May 2017, the original post received over 50,000 shares.

Ham face girl

First reported: 2016
This hoax makes the claim that a girl has an incurable skin condition. Some posts make claims  that shares or likes will raise money or awareness. Truthfully, she just has cold cut on her face.

The Lightning Strike

First reported: 2018
Early in 2018, several websites and social media pages began sharing this photo along with variants of the claim that this pattern was produced after being struck by lightning. Though lightning can cause unusual fractal-like patterns (Lichtenburg figure), which can be seen in the read more link below. The pattern in the photo to the right looks nothing like what the normal lightning strike burn patterns look like. As we can best tell, this image was likely created with makeup to promote fibromyalgia awareness or to describe how fibromyalgia feels, however we have been unable to confirm the exact source. If you have more information please report it via the feedback links at the top of the page.

Wasp Foot

First reported: 2013
A user uploaded a photo of his father's foot to www.reddit.com to show other users an injury. The image was quickly modified by hoaxers to include wasps inside the wound. The image has been seen circulating with fake stories involving the wasps causing or colonizing the wound. The read more button links to the original thread, though the original image appears to have been removed.

Octopus Lips

First reported: 2015

The earliest known record of the octopus lips is from a pintrest post in 2015 with no text description. Since then, the image has been posted with several descriptions on different websites. The source material has not been confirmed yet, but it is speculated that the lesions are photoshopped from an octopus or squid. One claim stated that the disease is caused via oral contact with infected female genitals, and was shared over 3,000 times on facebook, but rest assured that this is just another online skin disease hoax.

This website is for educational purposes only. Last updated: 12/29/2018