19/02/2022 / Beauty, Skin and Hair

Skin Tags Removal: Remedies, Treatment and Care

Skin tags are noncancerous and do not cause any harm, pain, or discomfort. However, these are some of the surest reasons to look unattractive. And here comes the need for skin tag removal. Below are some of the effective ways to remove skin tags.

Skin Tags Removal: Remedies, Treatment and Care
Manasa Krishna PerumallaManasa Krishna Perumalla

Manasa Krishna Perumalla

B.Pharm, Research Associate

Table Of Content

Introduction

Sometimes, skin tags will make you feel less confident and insecure especially when they grow on the face. There are several ways you can actually feel your smooth skin again. 

Home remedies to surgical treatment, there are many options for skin tag removal. So, no more hiding your face or using filters to hide your skin tags.

What are skin tags?

What are skin tags?
  • Skin tags are benign tumors that grow and hang from the surface of the skin with a stalk called a peduncle.

  • Skin tags are usually not harmful or cancerous but can spoil your beauty when grown on any easily visible area like the face, neck, eyelids.

  • Skin tag removal is not necessary until they become irritated by shaving or eczema.

  • Skin tag removal becomes necessary when they cause pain as they are stuck into clothing or jewelry. 

What are other medical terms of skin tags?

Skin tags are also known as acrochordon, acrochorda, skin polyp, fibroepithelial polyp, fibrovascular papilloma, soft fibroma, fibroma mole. Skin tags are random outgrowths of the skin.

Why do skin tags occur?

Skin tags are loose collagen fibers that lodge inside the skin foldings. Experts say that skin tags are common and can occur in half of the population. It is also reported that older adults, obese people, and diabetic patients are more prone to skin tags. 

Studies reveal that skin tags are more common in women than men.

The risk of skin tag development increases if:

  • You are getting old.

  • Have a genetic history of skin tags.

  • Health issues like diabetes, obesity, heart disease.

  • Having skin disorders such as Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome.

  • Hormonal changes leading to acromegaly and polycystic ovary syndrome.

  • Abnormal lipid profile.

  • Increased levels of growth hormone, which may be due to pregnancy.

Where do skin tags occur?

Skin tags will occur primarily in areas of creases (ridge or groove made due to folding) like eyelids, armpits, groin, neck, and breast.

The outgrowth of skin tags is typically seen in the size of rice grain and can grow up to half-inch in size.

How to diagnose skin tags?

Skin tags or diagnosed by skin specialists through visual observation. Skin tags appear as wiggly flesh-colored tissue that hangs from the surface of the skin formed due to skin outgrowth.

What are the other conditions that look similar to skin tags?

There are other conditions that appear similar to skin tags are moles, warts, including genital warts, skin cancer, skin diseases like seborrheic keratosis which causes wart-like spots.

How to differentiate skin tags from other conditions?

There are a few ways to differentiate skin tags from other conditions. The differences are:

Moles

Moles appear in pink, tan, or brown color whereas skin tags will be similar to the color of your skin. Moles can be raised but they tend to be flat, round, or oval-shaped. There are certain cases where moles can develop into skin cancer like Melanoma.

Warts

Similar to skin tags, warts may appear in the same color as the rest of your skin. But the surface of the warts is a bit rough. And usually, warts are caused by a virus that can be spread from one person to another.

Will you need any specific tests?

You don’t need to go through any specific tests to confirm a skin tag. In case your healthcare provider suspects the occurrence of skin tags, they will send a sample (biopsy) to the lab for further testing.

Can skin tags be removed?

  • Yes, skin tags can be removed but it’s optional because they are not harmful to your body or cause health problems. 

  • But random skin tags on the face or neck will sometimes make you uncomfortable. Some may consider skin tags unattractive. In either of the cases, you can remove skin tags with home remedies, over-the-counter skin tag removals or surgical therapy.

  • If you have time and patience there are many home remedies for removing skin tags naturally. Natural ways to remove skin tags may be a bit painful too. 

  • Some skin tag removal home remedies can be risky and may lead to complications. Be careful if you try removing a skin tag with over-the-counter skin tag removals, or else you may end up with serious skin problems like redness, bleeding, pain, or infection.

  • So, it is recommended to visit a doctor before you decide to start any natural skin tag removal.

Learn about the safest and most effective skin tag removal techniques:

How to get rid of skin tags naturally?

As we discussed earlier, skin tags do not require any treatment but if you choose to remove skin tags at home try any of the following home remedies to remove skin tags.

How to remove skin tags at home?

To remove skin tags naturally at home, you can try any of the techniques mentioned below; also, be cautious when you see any reactions on the skin. 

6 best home remedies for skin tag removal with oils 

Oils are part of ayurvedic medicine for several years and the same oils are going to help you to get rid of skin tags naturally.

So, let’s start this with the treatment of skin tags at home with oils:

1. Tea tree oil

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-With- Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil will help to treat several skin conditions. Always try to use a diluted version because it may irritate your skin if you use concentrated oil. Using tea tree oil to remove the skin tags is a natural home remedy.

Things required

The things you require for the removal of skin tags with tea tree oil are

  • 2-3 drops tea tree oil

  • 2-3 drops of coconut oil

  • Q tip or cotton swab

How to do
  • Start by washing the affected area of your skin.

  • Gently massage the tea tree oil over the skin outgrowth using a Q tip or cotton swab.

  • Now cover the skin tag with the help of a band-aid and leave it overnight.

For how long 

You need to repeat this process two to three times a day. Repeat the treatment of skin tag removal with tea tree oil regularly until the skin tag falls off or dries out.

How it works

Removing skin tags with tea tree oil is an easy process and is safe to use because it has antiviral and antifungal properties.

Using tea tree oil to remove skin tags helps in fast shedding and drying up.

2. Oregano oil

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-with-oregano

Oregano oil is one of the essential oils that can help in treating many skin diseases including random skin tags. 

Applying the oregano oil directly to the skin outgrowth will irritate you because it can be harsh. Dilute the oregano oil with some other oil of your choice such as Castor oil.

Things required

Using oregano oil for the removal of skin tags at home will require -

  • Two drops of oregano oil

  • Cotton 

  • 5 drops of coconut oil

How to do

Using oregano oil for skin tag treatment at home will include the following steps.

  • Take the coconut oil and Oregon oil and mix it well. 

  • Now apply the oil mixture onto the skin outgrowth with the help of a cotton ball. 

  • For effective removal of the skin, the tag leaves it to dry.

For how long

Repeat this home remedy to remove skin tags 2-3 times a day until the skin tag falls off.

How it works

Oregano oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties to treat skin ailments. When used regularly it helps as a natural way to remove skin tags at home.

3. Castor oil and baking soda

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-with-caster-oil-and-Baking soda

Castor oil helps in moisturizing and loosening the skin that is exfoliated by the use of baking soda.

Things required

For this natural home remedy of skin tag removal, you will need:

  • Half teaspoon of baking soda

  • 2 drops of big Castor oil

How to do
  • Take the above ingredients and mix them well. After you get a smooth paste, apply it on the skin tag to remove it naturally.

  • For effective skin tag removal and to avoid infections, cover it with the help of a bandage. 

  • Leave the affected area for 2-3 hours. Wash it out with water and pat dry the skin.

This natural home remedy of skin tag removal with oil will be useful for someone who doesn’t like to sleep with a bandage on.

For how long

You need to be patient when you are trying any of the home remedies of skin tag removal because it takes time for the skin tag to shed or dry off. Apply the Castor oil paste daily and the skin tag disappears.

How it works

Baking soda absorbs the moisture from the skin tag which will make it dry due to lack of blood supply, castor oil loosens the skin to make the skin tag fall off. Buy this the skin outgrowth will shrink and fall off.

4. Vitamin E

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-vitamin E

Vitamin E oil is naturally used to enhance the skin glow and is believed to work against wrinkles, face lines and pimples.

Vitamin is a good source of nutrients that are required for healthy skin.

Things required

For this home remedy of skin tag removal, you will need vitamin E oil or you can also use the vitamin E capsules.

How to do

Apply vitamin E oil over the skin tag to remove it naturally at home.

For how long

Follow the same procedure of massaging the oil to the skin tag until it is removed.

How it works

Vitamin E oil has antioxidant properties which will make the skin tag dry out and fall off.

5. Coconut oil

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-with-coconut oil

The use of coconut oil can be useful to remove skin tags at home naturally. Coconut oil is good for your skin. 

Pure coconut oil contains antioxidant properties, moisturizers and minimizes aging, and helps to protect your skin.

Things required
  • 2-3 drops of coconut oil

How to do

Apply coconut oil on the skin tag to be removed and leave it overnight.

For how long

Repeat the same natural home remedy of skin tag removal consistently until the skin tag falls off.

How it works

Coconut oil contains lauric acid and alpha-tocopherol that helps in the easy shedding of random skin tags. You can apply coconut oil on your face and neck. 

6. Clove oil

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-clove-oil

We all know that clove oil is used for relieving digestive problems and is widely used to reduce toothaches. 

But do you know it can help to get rid of skin tags naturally at home? Along with rosehip oil, clove oil works effectively in skin tag removal.

Things required

For the removal of skin tags with clove oil, you will need 

  • 2-3 drops of clove oil

  • 2 drops of rosehip oil

  • Cotton or cotton swab

How to do
  • Mix clove oil and rosehip oil and apply the mixture to the affected area where you are trying to remove the skin tags. 

  • Leave this overnight and wash it off in the morning.

For how long

Apply the clove oil until the tag falls off.

How it works

Clove oil contains active phytochemical compounds that will restrict blood circulation to the skin tags causing them to dry and eventually disappear and the rosehip oil helps to heal any scars that are left on the skin.

5 Other home remedies for skin tag removal 

1. Banana peel

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-banana peel

We all know that bananas are rich in potassium so we eat the bananas and toss away the peels.

What you don’t know is, even banana peel helps you in many ways. Don’t be surprised! Because banana peels are widely used on the face to brighten the skin and reduce wrinkles and are even placed on the eyes to reduce puffiness.

Banana peels also help in the removal of skin tags.

Things required

All you require is the banana peel. 

How to do
  • Take a banana peel and cut it into small pieces so that you can hold it properly. You can also use it as a whole, it depends on your choice. 

  • Now rub the banana peel to remove the skin tags. 

Note: Use the white fibrous side of the banana peel for skin tags. 

For how long

After rubbing the peel on the skin tags leave the peel for one hour. Repeat the remedy of skin tag removal with banana peel until the skin tag disappears.

How it works

The use of banana peel for skin tags helps to remove them easily with less pain. The enzymes and acids present in the banana peel help to naturally shed off the skin tags at home.

2. Apple cider vinegar

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-with-apple-cider-vinegar

Do you know how apple cider vinegar is made? Well, apple cider vinegar is made by combining apples and yeast where sugars of the apple are converted into alcohol by yeast.

Things required

The ingredients you required to remove skin tags with apple cider vinegar are

  • Two drops of apple cider vinegar

  • Cotton ball 

  • Duct tape

How to do
  • Collect a few drops of apple cider vinegar onto a cotton ball. 

  • Now place the cotton ball on the skin tag and now stick it using duct tape. 

  • Leave it overnight.

For how long

Continue the procedure of apple cider vinegar skin tag removal remedy until the skin tag is removed.

How it works

The acidity of apple cider vinegar helps to remove the skin tags and eventually the skin tags fall off.

3. Garlic

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-garlic

Garlic has many potential medicinal properties which are used by several Ayurvedic physicians.

Starting from stabilizing blood sugar levels to improving immunity, garlic is used in many home remedies. Now we are going to use garlic for skin tag removal at home. Using garlic for skin tags is a natural procedure that doesn’t cost you much.

Things required

You will require 1-2 cloves of garlic for this natural remedy of skin tag removal at home.

How to do
  • Take the garlic cloves and crush them into a paste. 

  • Take the smooth paste and apply it to the skin tag for easy removal. 

  • Now take a bandage and cover the skin tag and leave for at least one hour.

For how long

Use the garlic for skin tags twice a day until the skin tag sheds off.

How it works

The active enzymes present in the garlic helps in the removal of skin tags at home naturally making them shed off.

4. Manuka honey

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-with-manuka-honey

It is believed that Manuka honey has high antibacterial properties and can help in boosting immunity. 

Manuka honey also has anti-inflammatory properties and has good dietary value.

Things required
  • Manuka honey 

  • Cotton

  • Duct tape

How to do
  • Soak a cotton ball in manuka honey and apply it to the skin tags to remove the skin tags in a natural way.

  • Secure the cotton ball using duct tape.

For how long

Repeat this natural skin tag removal technique two times a day to get rid of the skin tags naturally.

How it works

Manuka honey is a non-peroxide type of honey that restricts the oxygen supply to the skin tags. This effect causes the skin tag to dry off and fall off eventually.

5. Iodine

Home-remedies-for-skin-tag-removal-with-iodine

Even though there is little scientific evidence in using iodine for skin tag removal; people use liquid iodine to remove skin tags.

Things required
  • Iodine

  • Petroleum Jelly or coconut oil

  • Q tip 

  • Bandage

How to do
  • Spread petroleum jelly or coconut oil around the surface of the skin tags that are needed to be removed. 

  • Dip the Q tip in the iodine and spread the liquid on the skin tag.

  • Cover the area using a bandage until the iodine dries.

For how long

Repeat this skin tag removal at home twice daily until the tag falls off.

How it works
  • Commonly used iodine in skin tag removal is povidone-iodine which is the antiseptic solution.

  • There is no scientific proof that it would work for the removal of skin tags.

Cut or clip skin tags

  • Using scissors, nail clippers, blades or use of any sharp things to remove skin tags at home can sound easy but is more dangerous. 

  • Health care professionals are experts who can use equipment that is more sterile than what you use at home. 

  • Do not cut the skin tags that are so large as it may result in bleeding and infection to the cutting of attached skin.

  • Do not try this method in removing skin tags present at your eyes or genitals. You may end up cutting a blood vessel or vein leading to a hemorrhage (excess blood loss). 

  • Never try these types of removal techniques without the approval of a doctor.

Is it safe to go with a natural way to remove skin tags?

The natural skin tag removal methods have no scientific evidence but many anecdotal beliefs and there is no proof of how exactly the methods work except the medical properties.

You need to be aware of not crossing the limit on trying these home remedies. Know when to stop a home remedy and see a doctor. 

Cautions for home remedies:

Do not try to remove skin tags -

  • Present near the eyes or eyelids

  • Situated around the genitals

  • On large skin tags

  • If you see redness, irritation, or bleeding of the skin

Seek medical treatment immediately if you accidentally cause bleeding or worsen the situation of skin tags.

Till now you have learned about the home remedies for skin tag removal naturally now let’s jump into the over-the-counter skin tag removal treatments at home.

Over-the-counter skin tag removal at home

Over-the-counter-skin-tag-removal-at-home

Along with home remedies, there are various over-the-counter skin tag removal methods to get rid of skin tags safely.

You can get over-the-counter skin tag removal products from a general store or drugstore. The various over-the-counter skin tag removal includes-

Freezing kits

Skin tag removal freezing kits are easily available at affordable prices. Skin tag removal freezing kits contain chemicals that lower the temperature of the skin tag for easy removal. 

Once you apply the chemical from the skin tag removal freezing kit, it will stop the blood circulation to the skin tag eliminating the cells. The ice particles from the skin tag removal freezing kit develop into the cells and expand causing deoxygenation. 

This leads to the freezing of the skin tag and changes its color to white. The process may take 2-3 days to work.

Skin tag removal creams

Using skin tag removal creams will take 2-3 weeks to completely fall off for a skin tag. These skin tag removal creams will not be suitable for everyone because of the presence of salicylic acid.

Clean the skin with alcohol wipes and cover the surrounding area with a tape or bandage to avoid exposure to the cream.

Most of the skin tag removal creams contain tea tree oil and salicylic acid. The combination of these two ingredients may sometimes irritate the skin.

Skin tag removal patches

Skin tag patches are available as an over-the-counter removal of skin tag removal option. These skin tag patches are medicated.

Take the skin tag removal patch and cut the patch in the size required. Peel off the covering and place the patch over the skin tag. Leave the patch as directed on the label and replace the patch every 8 to 48 hours depending on the brand.

The skin tag is supposed to come off along with the patch when removed. Studies say that it is not very effective and also may cause skin reactions like irritation, redness, pain.

Skin tag removal liquids/gels

Skin tag removal liquids contain salicylic acid for the removal of skin outgrowth. Apply a few drops or it in court on the skin tag using the applicator or a Q tip.

Be careful not to apply to the skin surrounding the skin tag. Leave the skin tag removal liquid for 5 minutes. Repeat the same process twice a day until the skin tag falls off.

Skin tag removal device

Skin tag removal devices are available in the market as electronic and manual devices.

The manual devices come with one-hand operated bands that work by cutting the blood supply and may take 2 to 3 weeks for a skin tag to fall off. They come in different sizes based on skin tag growth. This process needs patience and time but is easy and painless.

The electric device works with burning off the skin tag. The use of numbing cream is one of the best options to not feel pain. It does not take much time but you need to tolerate the smell of burning for a small time. It can be dangerous to use when you have a skin tag near your eyes or genitals.

Using electric devices is not recommended because when you are directly coming in contact with the skin you need to be careful and may require a professional’s help.

Some OTC options are not approved and do not have any scientific evidence. However, some home remedies are safe and easy to get rid of skin tags naturally.

Effective surgical skin tag removal methods

Besides home remedies and OTC medications, you can remove skin tags using medical treatment. Visit a dermatologist and explain your condition. Based on the size and area of the skin tag your doctor will suggest you a medical procedure. 

These medical treatments are the safest way of skin tag removal as they are done by a healthcare professional with less pain.

The aftercare is also provided by the doctors which will help you prevent any further skin reactions.

Your doctor will remove the skin tags in any of these ways:

Cauterization or burning 

This process is also called electrocautery. Your doctor will use an electric probe or needle that produces electricity. 

The electric current burns off the skin tag for easy removal. This will sometimes burn the skin that causes pain. So, your doctor may apply numbing cream to prevent the pain.

The burning will prevent skin infections but leaves a scar that will fade away with time. 

Cryotherapy or freezing

Liquid nitrogen is used to freeze the skin tag in cryotherapy. Only experts can use liquid nitrogen; the liquid nitrogen will take at least 10 days to remove the skin tag.

The skin tag will fall off naturally afterward. The freezing skin tag removal process may cause a burning sensation when applied to the skin surrounding the tag. 

Your doctor may cover the surrounding skin with a band-aid or tape to prevent this irritation.

Ligation or tying off

Ligation is a process where the blood supply of the skin tag is stopped to remove the skin tag naturally. This is a more natural way a doctor can remove your tag but it takes time.

A sterile surgical thread is tied at the base of the skin tag to prevent blood circulation. The lack of oxygen supply makes the skin tag fall off eventually. This may take up to 2-3 weeks. 

But it can lead to bleeding, irritation and infection in case of large skin tags. It is better to try cryotherapy or cauterization methods for large skin tags.

Excision or Removal with scalpel or scissors

For removal of skin tags without any medical procedures or chemicals, your doctor may suggest for excision of skin tags.

The skin tag is snipped off with a scalpel or surgical scissors or will be shaved off in some cases. 

Your doctor will use a blade that is much sharper and more sterile than tools used in home remedies. A chemical compound is applied after the procedure to prevent bleeding of the skin.

Aftercare of skin tag removal

Depending on the procedure you used to remove a skin tag there are different methods to care for your skin.

  • If you cause bleeding of any skin tag. You need to use a sterile cotton ball to prevent bleeding. Don’t use cloth or rubbing alcohol as it may irritate the skin more.

  • If your skin tag is removed using excision, you will be asked to cover the skin with a bandage for several days. In some cases, you are told to keep the wound open to heal it dry. 

  • You will be given an antibiotic ointment if your skin is more prone to infection.

  • Large skin tags will make a groove and need stitches after removal. Your doctor will suggest caring for your stitches and wound. You need to cover the area for at least 24 to 48hrs. 

  • If your skin tag is removed by the freezing or burning method, you will need to cover the area with a bandage to avoid irritation caused by clothing or dust.

Never use products that can cause irritation and prevent the healing process like -                    Skin cleansers, Iodine, Alcohol, Hydrogen peroxide, Antibacterial soaps.

Myths and facts of skin tag removal

Myths-and-facts-of-skin-tag-removal

Skin tags are cancerous - Skin tags are not cancerous or harmful. They are just random skin outgrowths like benign tumors.

  • Skin tags cause pain - Skin tags do not cause pain until they are rubbed or irritated by clothing or stuck in jewelry.

  • All skin outgrowths are skin tags - All skin outgrowths are not skin tags; some may be warts and tumors that will lead to cancer caused by virus or infections or malignant cell growth

  • Removing skin tags causes more to grow - This is not true. Removal of skin tags does not lead to more skin tags. But even if you remove all the skin tags you may get new random skin tags.

  • Skin tags are contagious - No, skin tags are not contagious as they are caused due to internal health conditions and not through any infection.

  • Skin tags are caused due to dirty skin - Even though skin tags may look ugly they are caused due to bad hygiene habits. They are caused due to obesity, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), pregnancy, diabetes, hormone imbalance.

  • Skin tags cannot be prevented - This is not totally true as experts say that skin tags are the barometer to the unhealthy lifestyle you live. Obesity and insulin resistance are some common health issues for the occurrence of skin tags.

Risks associated with skin tag removal

Removal of skin tags with no experience and without medical professional help will have an impact on the skin sometimes.

  • A huge scar may be left behind due to improper removal of the skin tag. 

  • When removing the skin tag naturally at home you may leave out some part of the skin tag.

  • You may accidentally remove the skin surrounding the skin tag which may require expert assistance to correct. 

  • Some chemicals from OTC medications can cause mild irritation and skin reactions like dermatitis after the removal of the skin tag.

  • Sometimes skin tags have nerves grown into them; when you cut off the skin tag this will result in pain for weeks or months. This is called a neuroma.

Take-home points

  • Skin tags are not harmful and cancerous so, no need to panic.

  • Skin tags are permanent but can be removed.

  • Never try any of the home remedies when a skin tag is near eyes or genitals.

  • Stop using the OTC medications if you experience any irritation or pain around the skin tag.

  • Seek a doctor’s advice to understand the condition of a skin outgrowth, not all skin outgrowths are skin tags.

  • Follow the aftercare tips even if you do not have bleeding or pain to prevent infections.


FAQ on Skin Tag removal, remedies, treatment and care

1. How to remove skin tags naturally?

Ans. Home remedies will help you to remove skin tags easily at home. You can use the natural skin tags removal methods explained in this blog. 

2. Will removing a skin tag cause more to grow?

Ans. No, that’s not true, skin tag removal does not cause more to grow.

3. Are skin tags cancerous?

Ans. Skin tags are not cancerous and are not harmful.

4. What is the effective way for skin tag removal?

Ans. A surgical procedure would be one of the best ways to avoid accidental skin infections, bleeding and pain.

5. Will eating fatty foods cause skin tags?

Ans. Fatty foods do not cause skin tags directly but being overweight may lead to skin tags.

6. Why do skin tags grow in size?

Ans. This may be due to hormonal changes or increased growth hormone. 

7. What causes skin tags to turn black?

Ans. Skin tags are turned black due to inadequate blood supply.

8. Is removing skin tags dangerous?

Ans. No, you can go for it without any hesitation. It's not harmful to remove skin tags.


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