‘That Backfired’: Mark Zuckerberg Explains ‘Lizard’ Look in Live Chat

The Facebook founder says it was a ruse to hide from paparazzi, but it ‘backfired’

‘That Backfired’: Mark Zuckerberg Explains ‘Lizard’ Look in Live Chat

Zuckerberg was last year snapped riding an electric surfboard while he was on a family vacation in Hawaii

Highlights
  • The picture shows Zuckerberg standing on a surfboard
  • His sunscreen-smeared face that caught everyone's attention
  • The picture sparked a meme fest with people drawing comparisons

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg finally explained the ‘lizard look' of his that went viral, explaining that he was trying to throw off the paparazzi in a move that backfired spectacularly. Zuckerberg was last year snapped riding an electric surfboard while he was on a family vacation in Hawaii. However, that wasn't the reason why the tech giant chief went viral and became a subject of numerous memes on the Internet. The picture shows Zuckerberg standing on a surfboard, but it was his sunscreen-smeared face that caught everyone's attention. The picture sparked a meme fest with people drawing comparisons with Joker, Queen Elizabeth I, and Mrs Doubtfire, with the most common refrain being that Zuckerberg was “a lizard person”.

A year later, Zuckerberg on Wednesday finally explained the reason why he had applied so much sunscreen that day. In a live chat with Instagram head Adam Mosseri, titled, "As long as the world keeps turning, the memes keep churning", Zuckerberg addressed the question, saying he had noticed a paparazzi who was following them. " I was like I don't want him to recognise me. So, what I am going to do is put tonnes of sunscreen,” he said.

However, Zuckerberg went on to admit that it was certainly not his best-laid plan. “But that backfired. And I should have really thought through it before doing it,” he said, laughing. He added that he was a pale-skinned person and therefore used lots of sunscreen to keep his skin healthy.

Zuckerberg might have tried to disguise himself as someone else, but that his efforts fell flat need no explanation. "It's all good to have a sense of humour. I am glad people could laugh about it. I laugh about it," he said.

He also said that was just "way too much" sunscreen. "No one needs to be wearing that much sunscreen."

Zuckerberg then went on to say, "There has been a lot worse about me. So, if someone wants to post a sunscreen meme, it's cool. I'm happy to give the Internet some laughs."


We dive into all things Apple — iPad Pro, iMac, Apple TV 4K, and AirTag — this week on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.
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