If you’ve ever spent any time wondering about skin tag removal methods, you certainly won’t be alone. While they’re perfectly harmless, they’re also quite unsightly, so it’s understandable so why many people search for answers on how to remove skin tags.
Skin tags can grow anywhere on the body, but the most common areas are within any folds of skin where friction occurs. The underarms and groin are a very common place to find them.
They’re a very common problem, especially for obese adults, older people, or those with type 2 diabetes. Most people put up with them, believing expensive cosmetic surgery will be their only available option, however, skin tag removal doesn’t always have to involve a trip to the doctor.
How to tell whether it’s a skin tag or a wart
Before you go any further, there’s one thing you must make sure of: that it’s not a wart. The last thing you want to do is start trying to remove a wart, as you’ll probably cause more to appear!
If it’s a wart
It will be bumpy and rough. You may think it almost looks like a mini-cauliflower. They tend to be flat against the skin, or only very slightly raised if at all.
Warts are highly contagious and will spread like wildfire if left to their own devices. If you suspect a wart, a trip to the chemist is recommended. A good dose of over-the-counter medicine should have you sorted in no time.
If it’s a skin tag
It will be smooth, round and probably attached to the skin by what appears to be a ‘stalk’. Skin tags are not contagious, and won’t disappear on their own. Unless it’s physically removed, your skin tag will be with you for life.
So, what are the options for skin tag removal?
There are several options available for people looking how to remove skin tags. Some can be done at home, some will need a doctor. It all depends on the size and type of skin tag. If you’re unsure about any of these methods, chat to your doctor, or at the very least a pharmacist. Never try home skin tag removal unless you’re 100% sure it’s a skin tag and that it’s small enough.
Warning – This is only suitable if your skin tag is small! Don’t try it with anything larger than a few millimetres as it will bleed and be very painful!
Ligation is the process of tying a thread around the very base of the skin tag, causing it to lose its blood supply and fall off.
- Clean the area thoroughly with soap, water and then an alcohol wipe, similar to the type used when cleaning a new piercing.
- Using dental floss, tie a knot around the very base of the stalk, close to the skin. If you don’t do this low enough, you’ll still be left with a bit of loose skin once the tag’s fallen off. Tie the knot tight enough to stop the blood flow, but not so tight you cut the skin, that’s not the intention here.
- Apply a loose bandage or plaster over the area, just so it doesn’t get snagged and perhaps to stop people staring! It’s also important to keep the area clean as the skin tag begins to die, to prevent infection. Clean the area with an alcohol wipe daily.
- Once the tag has fallen off, wipe with an alcohol wipe for the next few days, until the area has fully scabbed over. Don’t leave the area exposed to air until this has happened, especially if it’s an area which may be exposed to dirt easily.
Ligation isn’t pain-free, but it does avoid a trip to the doctors’ surgery, so it may be an option if you’re looking for a relatively fuss-free skin tag removal method.
The maximum amount of time it should take for ligation to work is around 7 – 10 days. You should notice the skin tag begins to look smaller, darker and harder until it eventually drops off completely.
If done properly, ligation shouldn’t cause any bleeding. If you spot blood, you may have tied the floss too tightly and cut into your skin, so remove and try again once this has healed. Use alcohol to clean the area in the meantime.
The skin tag should only decrease in size, not increase. If you spot an increase, stop and see your GP – you may have an infection setting in.
2 Surgical Removal
If you’re wondering how to remove skin tags which are particularly large, surgical removal is a relatively painless method of skin tag removal. A doctor can usually do this at your local surgery using either a scalpel, laser, liquid nitrogen or cauterisation. Most doctors will use a little anaesthetic when performing this procedure, and the results are instant.
There should be no need for a trip to the hospital, as this is very minor surgery. The downside, of course, is cost. As it’s considered ‘cosmetic surgery’, some people may not feel they can justify spending money on surgical removal of a skin tag.
The final method is incredibly popular with people who want a low cost, pain-free solution.
Bioxin™ is a topical cream, which when applied twice daily to the skin tag causes them to reduce in size and fall off naturally. Beyond remembering to apply the cream, there’s really nothing else to do. It’s a painless, cost-effective skin tag removal method which can be used at home without a prescription.
If the thought of a doctor visit sounds expensive, and ligation makes you squeamish, Bioxin™ just may be the answer to your prayers. As it comes with a 60-day money back guarantee, it’s easy to see why so many people are willing to give it a try to avoid the more grisly alternatives.
Whatever you decide to do, there’s plenty of options available to you. No matter what your age is, you don’t ever need to feel you’re stuck with skin tags.
Have you used these or any other skin tag removal methods? Share your experiences in the comments below!