You may never look at a hair tie the same way again. Earlier this month, Kentucky resident Audree Kopp noticed a bump on her wrist that wasn't going away, WLKY reports. At first she thought it was a spider bite, but it just "kept getting bigger and redder and worse" until it was larger than a quarter. Even antibiotics did nothing to impede the growing bump. When the cause was finally figured out, Kopp "didn't believe it"—her doctor says bacteria from a glittery hair tie she was wearing around her wrist got under her skin and caused not one but three types of potentially dangerous infections, WLKY reports.
"You can't put all these hair-ties around the wrist particularly because it can cause problems with the skin," says Amit Gupta, the doctor who treated her. Kopp eventually had to have surgery on the abscess to remove a large amount of pus from the infection. She says she won't be wearing hair ties on her wrist anymore, but the story is gaining national attention because the practice is so common. "For years, you've probably been wearing hair ties on your wrist, stacked almost like bracelets," a post at Teen Vogue observes. The problem is that retailers have noticed and started making the hair ties more fashionable by adding glitter and the like. From now on, "maybe just throw some extras in your bag, instead of on your wrists," it advises. (This woman went blind after being licked by her cat.)