How did Bo Burnham get the scar on his face? Cheek mark explained

Leigh McManus June 7, 2021
Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images

How did Bo Burnham get the scar on his face? People are interested in what happened to create the circular blemish on his left cheek after his new 90-minute special, Bo Burnham: Inside, premiered on Netflix last week.

Who is Bo Burnham?

Bo Burnham is a comedian, musician, actor, film director, screenwriter, and poet. The Hamilton, Massachusetts-native began his career on YouTube in March 2006, with his videos gaining over 310 million views as of June 2021.

Burnham, 30, signed a four-year record deal with Comedy Central Records and released his debut EP, Bo fo Sho, in 2008. His first full-length album, Bo Burnham, was released the following year.

  • EXPLAINED: Bo Burnham Green Room interview resurfaces

At the age of 18, he became the youngest person to record a half-hour comedy special with Comedy Central. In 2010, his second album, Words Words Words, was released along with his first live comedy special of the same name on Comedy Central.

His third album and second comedy special, what., was released in 2013 on his YouTube channel and Netflix. Burnham’s third stand-up comedy special, Make Happy, was released exclusively on Netflix in 2016.

His move into productions like these saw him step away from live shows. “I’d love to get back to live performing, but I’d have to figure out what I’d say next,” he said in April 2019.

How did Bo Burnham get the circular scar on his face?

Bo Burnham has been on our TV screens for over ten years now, and on our computer screens for even longer. So people have noticed the the scar on his face, but where does it come from?

Replying to a fan who tweeted him after the release of his second comedy special, what., the comic told him that the circular blemish is from birth.

Replying to the user, he said it is a “birthmark/birthscar! Always had it, but television cameras pick up everything.”


Going into more detail on a 2016 Ask Me Anything thread on Reddit, Burnham said that the scar was actually caused in the process of birth.

He said: “From birth. The first thing you’re supposed to see when a baby comes out is the top of its head. I came out FACE FIRST. That is a scar from my mother’s pelvic bone smacking me in the face.”

Viewers notice cheek mark during Burnham’s new Netflix show

Burnham’s newest special, Bo Burnham: Inside, premiered on Netflix last week. Filmed in his Los Angeles home during the Covid-19 pandemic, Burnham directed, wrote, filmed, edited, and starred in it.

It received wide-spread acclaim from critics. The New Yorker called it a “virtuosic portrait of a mediated mind,” and said in a review that it “explores what it means to be a performer when you’re stuck to a screen but also stuck inside your head.”

The promo shots, shared across Burnham’s social media, feature close ups of his face, but appear to shed light on the unblemished left cheek.

However, viewers of the show took to Twitter to query where the mark came from. One user tagged Burnham in a tweet and said while he enjoyed the show, he couldn’t help but ask: “What’s the deal with that circle mark on your cheek? I spent the entire special thinking about it.”

Another user wrote: “Not me wondering if @boburnham had a skin biopsy on his cheek.” A third added: “Where did the scar on your cheek come from? Also I would die for you but that’s way less important right now.”

Leigh is a 26-year-old journalist from the north of Ireland. He studied International Journalism at Liverpool John Moores University, where he earned a 2:1 grade. He has worked for Mail Online and has experience with the Liverpool Echo, Irish Mirror and SWNS. Leigh is also a huge music fan and has his own show on a community radio station.