Home Remedy for a Plantar Wart. Because Evidently I’m Gross.

I have a plantar wart on my foot. It came as a shock to discover that I’m a 15 year old boy on a swim team. Here’s the drugstore cure I used to get rid of it. 

Plantar's warts usually appear on the sole of the foot, but in some cases will show up in between toes like this.

I figured it was because of my unparalleled commitment to running; being able to run through the pain of what was obviously some sort of running injury. The kind of injury an elegant, elite marathoner would get.  Or those people who run until they poop in their pants.

The pain between my toes persisted for a few weeks of running, so I finally decided to take a look. I didn’t want to have some serious athletic injury like “Runner’s Bubble Knuckle” and NOT be bragging about it.   

I did have an athletic injury. I had a plantar wart.  Normally only seen on children and people who walk barefoot around wet locker rooms while while trying to hide their tube of Proactiv. 

Dr. Scholl's wart remover kit laid out shows the bandaids, box and small patches of Salicylic Acid.

I’m a disgusting human being with warts.

It’s not a new feeling. I remember being very young, maybe 7 or 8 and  having a plantar wart.  It was on the bottom of my foot and had to be cut out by my doctor. This was back in the day when doctors actually doctored. Mine even knew how to clean out ear wax and give stitches.  Now doctors give out prescriptions and secretly Google for answers while you’re changing back into your clothes.

I wasn’t looking forward to having a doctor dig a hole out of my foot so I tried to dig a hole out of my foot myself.  Not with a knife, but with Salicylic acid, the active ingredient that gets rid of warts by killing the skin. It’s a little more scientific than that but that’s the gist of it.

How to Get Rid of a Plantar Wart at Home

  1. Buy a wart removal kit. They’re all basically the same. My pharmacist recommended the cheapest one on the shelf because it came with a tiny Salicylic pad and bandaids which would work well for the bizarre “between my toes” plantar wart.
  2. Remove the wart pads from the kit and peel one off. Put it directly over your (gross) wart and stick it down.
  3. Cover your Salicylic pad with the provided bandaid. It’ll either be a regular oblong bandaid or a round, soft pad bandaid.
  4. Replace the pad and bandaid every 2 days until your skin has died and comes off naturally. You may need to pull the skin a bit, pulling the root of the plantar wart with it!  Gross.  Yet weirdly satisfying.

 

 

The telltale sign of a plantar wart is the small indented circle with a black pinhead point in the centre. It's all surrounded by a thick callous that builds up over time.

You can identify a plantar wart by the tiny circle like a pinhead with a minuscule black dot in the centre. It isn’t the wart that causes pain, it’s the callous that builds up around it.

The tiny medicated patch for warts has adhesive on one side so it'll stick to your foot. In this case it's stuck between the 4th and 5th toes.

The Salicylic acid pad placed over the … let’s call it a beauty mark from now on … I just feel better about it that way.

The clear wart bandaid being applied in between toes to secure the pad.

I bought this Dr. Scholl’s kit and the bandaids are perfectly clear, great for wrapping around a toe. Probably not so great for the bottom of your foot.  This kit would be better for that.

There’s also a LOT of talk on the Internet about people wrapping their feet in duct tape to get rid of plantar warts.  I decided I wasn’t so poor that I had to Red Green my way out of a wart. I could spend the $10 on medicine.

The bandaid should stay on for 2 days, but will need to be replaced if it gets wet in the shower.

You just stick the bandaid down and then pull away the wrapping.

A virtually invisible clear bandaid surrounding the 4th toe.

You can’t see it at all. NO one will know you’re treating ….. a beauty mark.

After several days the skin beneath a Salicylic Acid pad will start to die and go white like this.

Just don’t show them what your foot looks like after the pad has been on a few days.  Your skin turns white and eventually just pulls away with your body, the root of the plantar wart attached.  You’re welcome for not including that photo.

What you’re left with is a small hole where the dead skin has pulled out, and some pinkish skin underneath. It all fills in by itself in that magical way skin works.  Because it regenerates itself when we cut ourselves wide open, we forgive skin for also drying, sagging, wrinkling and flapping.

All went well and my plantar wart was gone, until a few weeks later it seemed to come back. I couldn’t really see it but it felt the same as it did when I thought I had that elite runner’s injury. So I put another pad on it and started the treatment over again just in case.

THIS time I got no root, and just ended up with a raw toe which probably had thin, sensitive skin after being killed off just a few weeks earlier.  I may have jumped the gun on retreating.

Do I recommend these wart treatments?  I give a cautious YES!  The first run was a success and I was amazed it worked as well as it did.  BUT – I’m not positive that it removed it entirely.  I’m fairly certain it did, but I won’t really know I suppose for a couple of months.

If it’s still there, then I’ll have to go to my Doctor so she can Google my next … beauty treatment. 

 

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42 Comments

  1. billy sharpstick says:

    What is that nail polish color?

  2. Debra says:

    In case you don’t want to go the salicylic acid route again with the sore leftover skin I wanted to let you know an easier, cheaper, less painful way. My son had an enormous plantar wart on the ball of his foot, so bad he could barely walk. Before I took him to the doctor to get it melonballed out of his foot I tried treating it with my general cure-all, tea tree oil. I figured it wouldn’t hurt to try so every day right when he got out of a shower and the skin was still soft I put some tea tree oil on it, straight from the bottle. Kept this up for a week or two (I don’t really remember exactly), but it worked like a charm. Even he was surprised. Any other warts in other places? Banana skin. Plus you get to eat the bananas.

  3. Alisa says:

    Apple cider vinegar works fantastically for those.

  4. Martina says:

    Well this article brought back memories…I was in grade six and hadn’t missed a day of school in six years and got a planters wart and had to take 1/2 day off school to go to the hospital, get anesthetized and have the wart dug out…ruined my perfect attendance! Not to mention having a bad reaction to the anesthesia…fun times…lol

  5. Kmarie says:

    My friend just showed me dr pimple popper ( look her up on insta or YouTube) apparently people go to sleep after watching her videos to de stress! Those same people probably would have liked the omitted photo 😂🤷‍♀️Anyway, memories that were terrible – I had the stupid freezing thing done and I can still see the cool frost swirling in the drs office and feel that one of a kind pain ;( I hope it gets better soon for you 😊💫

    • Alena says:

      People have to de-stress after watching Dr. Pimple Popper? I watch her to de-stress; one of the better series on TLC. I can easily eat while watching her popping the various lipomas or cysts.
      I think it’s very informative and the only thing that pisses me off when her patients report that they had seen a doctor (if not multiple ones) in the past and the doctor(s) just told them “oh it’s just a lipoma, it doesn’t do any harm”. Yeah, maybe it does not cause any harm, but why should someone live with a lipoma or a cyst the size of a tennis ball? Those doctors should not be allowed to practice.

  6. Tina says:

    Ok, this is embarrassing…I had a tag mole on the inside of one of my thighs. Google said to just use any sort of wart remover, paint the stuff on and cover with a bandaid, do that twice the first day and once a day for a week after. So I did. It wasn’t until the evening of the second day I started feeling red hot PAIN! I decided I could live with the tag so took the bandaid off and washed it. It hurt so much, it felt like the hounds of hell were eating my leg! All I could do was lay with an ice bag between my legs! After taking a couple days off work (I couldn’t wear pants), I was finally able to hobble. I strongly suggest you don’t use that for tag moles!

    • Laura Bee says:

      Apple cider vinegar works for skin tags.

      • Jan in Waterdown says:

        So how do you treat them and what does it do? Dry them up and they fall off or?? I’ve had my doctor hit them with liquid nitrogen but would prefer a diy.

        • Laura Bee says:

          I think I just dabbed it with a cotton ball a few times a day. Didn’t take too long. Dries up and falls off. Google has other info and techniques.

        • Joi Lin Olsen says:

          I’ve taken off my own skin tags with a pair of sterilized nail clippers before. Obviously, this only works with smaller skin tags, and you want sharp nail clippers. But I just dip the clippers in alcohol and then in hydrogen peroxide, and then slide them around the base of the tag and silently go “1, 2, 3…” and then close my eyes and snip!” Yes, it hurts, but no worse than having it frozen. Yes, it bleeds, but only for a second. I put a cotton ball or tissue on it and press until the bleeding stops – usually within a minute. Then I dab it with antibiotic ointment and I’m good to go! Of course, I am not a doctor, and cannot officially recommend anyone else try this method. But to my mind, it sure beats paying someone else a $30+ co-pay (plus travel and time out of my day) to do essentially the same thing!

    • Gayle M says:

      I have weekly AHA abnd BHA facial treatments in my face routine (I alternate weeks), and just applied both at the same time twice a day. They are very drying if used too often, so it finally fried up and fell off. I would think that might be gentler on your leg. This tag was just under the broe on the outside corener of my eye. Until the tag fell off, it just looked like a patchy dry spot. NOTE this also worked on a “liver spot” that developed on my collar bone, but I actually had to rough the spot up daily with a wash cloth to work off the waxy top layer–took a month but it hasn’t come back in a couple years.)

  7. Sarah says:

    I had a plantar wart, but thought it was just a callus. So I soaked my feet in warm water with one half cup of vinegar and one half cup of Listerine mouth wash daily. First my feet were smoother than usual because I rubbed with Cetaphil thick lotion in a jar and wore socks in bed. Two weeks later while putting on the socks I felt something like the round bandaids and pulled on the callus. A week later I removed a hard bead of skin. No more pain.

  8. Sue Labrie says:

    Thuja ointment also works for plantar warts, my daughter had several of them from dance class. It is the consistency of Vaseline but it is a natural product, can’t remember what is derived from? I would apply it to the “beauty marks” before she went to bed and she would wear socks to help it soak in and not make a mess, worked great!

  9. Carol says:

    How nice to hear that tea tree oil works on plantar warts AND toe fungus, as I am dealing with the latter. A bit of plantar wart trivia. I had one on my heel as a teenager. Not knowing what it was, I picked at it with tweezers, pulling out individual roots. Yuck, I know! Eventually it became infected and I was unable to put my heel down – had to wear a slipper to my bank teller job that day. When the thing broke, releasing pus, the wart was GONE! I was later told that a plantar wart is a virus and when my body fought the infection I caused, it killed the virus. Thanks for all the info sharing!

  10. Peggy says:

    A few years ago I had something that looked like what you’re calling a plantar wart. ( or beauty mark). It was actually a little bit of bone growing on the side of my toe bone. The podiatrist made a tiny incision in my toe and stuck a tool that looked a lot like a dremel in the incision and ground off the extra bone material. I watched the whole thing! Local anesthesia wore off and I was good as new. What I thought was a wart was the callus built up over the bone.

  11. Bonnie Harris says:

    “secretly Google for answers while you’re changing back into your clothes.” Oh Karen, you’re so funny and so right. I’ve long suspected that myself. Here’s what I know about our beauty marks…
    For every fact you read about plantar warts, there is an opposite one. For every person who swears by a remedy, there’s another person with a different one. Some disappear on their own fairly quickly, some last 50 years. Some painful removal operations work for some people, not for others. They’re quirky and volatile and doctors don’t really understand them. I say start with the ‘cure’ that causes the least pain (and cross your fingers).

  12. Suzanne LH says:

    What young looking feet you have. When I rode everyday for years, I got plantar warts. Dozens of them. My old school Dr told me to use the same cure. It worked. He also told me to spray the inside of all my closed shoes with Lysol. Especially rubber boots & sneakers. The spores live forever otherwise, and the warts will come back. Glad your treatment was a success.

    • Karen says:

      You got plantar warts from horseback riding? I rode for years and that’s one injury never encountered, lol. ~ karen!

      • Marjorie Kramer says:

        I get plantar warts all the time, so, I’m really much more gross than Karen is. I will try the Lysol on my shoes, maybe that’s why they keep coming back. Duh…

  13. Laura Bee says:

    My daughter had one named Morty the Warty. Her dad used the kit to remove it. I got to deal with lice a few times. They were named Bitey and Jones.
    Kids are gross but they are fun.

  14. Gayle M says:

    That might have been a corn between your toes if you didn’t get a root. I got one there once myself. From medicinenet.com:

    Corns: Corns generally occur on the tops and sides of the toes. A hard corn is a small patch of thickened, dead skin with a packed center. A soft corn has a much thinner surface and usually occurs between the 4th and 5th toes. A seed corn is a tiny, discrete callous that can be very tender if it’s on a weight-bearing part of the foot

  15. Tom says:

    How about age spot removal?

  16. Carla says:

    If your wart comes back, go to the doctor and get a treatment of Cantharone Plus. Doesn’t hurt and works great. We tried the home remedy stuff on my daughter with no luck. 3 treatments of this stuff and gone.

  17. Jody says:

    Wow, I just readt\ hrough the comments. Who knew there were so many DYI treatments for so many afflictions. Interesting stuff like Listerine, Lysol, tea tree oil, vinegar………but my favourite was nail clippers on skin tags!

  18. Ei Con says:

    That looks like a corn to me rather than a plantar wart. My mom used to get them back in the 60s from wearing those pointy toe pumps. As I was #1 daughter, my job was to apply some sort if liquid solution, apply the little cushion with the hole it and check it daily. I thought plantar warts only were on the soles of the feet.

  19. judy says:

    boy oh boy-on the subject of the reality of being an organism with weird adventures in bothersome yuckies. May I provide a heads up re: BMs’. I spent from 8 am till 3 pm in the bathroom trying to give birth to something stuck in my poop chute. Old and now with heart problems I decided that dying on a toilet was more embarrassing than the ER. Evidently bowel impactions rate at the bottom-of emergencies-so at 6:00 pm I finally told the receptionist that if I couldn’t be seen I needed to go home. 20 minutes-exam room-30 minutes later nurse physician who proceeded to drive a truck up my (by this time very sore butt). 15 minutes of pain and she had the plug out and and I found that I was (as some have opined through the years) full of sh*t. It seems that I ignore the need to go and that is very very ill advised. Drink water,eat fruit and go as soon as Mr. Butt runs up the poop flag. I would take just about anything over this nasty experience.

  20. Bonnie Gutierrez says:

    The question is: did the plantar wart go away after Judy’s impaction was dug out?!!

  21. Marie-Claude says:

    I know I’m a little late in joining the conversation but that’s not a wart, it’s corn. Trust me, I’ve had both, and more than once. The treatment is the same anyhow, just a lot quicker if it’s only corn. Forget about all the home remedies and stick to the little salicylic acid discs that the pharmacist recommended to you

    • Karen says:

      Yep, I plan to use the little pads. 🙂 And I think you’re right! I think it is a corn! Which is even worse. A plantar wart is something kids get, a corn is something the elderly get, lol. I’ve officially entered the realm of the elderly ~ karen!

      • Marie-Claude says:

        LOL! So true about the elderly thing, although I’ve been getting them since high school if it makes you feel any better. My baby toe is turned in slightly so the bone always rubs a little on the inside of the toe next to it, hence the corn. And like you, it gets worse with running (especially in warm weather). So you see, it really is a cool sports injury!

      • Lee Ann says:

        Nope, Karen. I got a corn in the exact same place as you at 16 from I’ll- fitting Nike tennis shoes. I remember vividly because they were $42 and took my entire part time paycheck to pay for them.
        Ah, the memories you have re-kindled.

  22. Rosiland Ball says:

    JOLIN OLSON
    I do the same thing!

  23. Lynne says:

    OK….I just could not resist offering up this bit of magic. Way back in my teenage years, 70’s I got a very painful plantar wart on the sole of my foot. My aunt said, ‘trust me’ and proceeded to carve away (with a razor blade) a huge amount of built up hard callous (no pain). She then made a small X with blade across the centre of wart just to ‘open it up ‘ she said. them she proceeded to prick her finger and drew a drop of blood and placed it on the open skin of the wart and sent me on my way. The huge wart with root attached basically fell out a few days later!!! TRUE story!

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