Does Wart Removal with Duct Tape Really Work?

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  • Written By: Bobbie Fredericks
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 11 October 2019
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Wart removal with duct tape works, but it can take a long time. Several studies have even shown it to be more effective than freezing the warts with liquid nitrogen. Wart removal with duct tape is less painful than other procedures, so it is worth trying first. Other types of tape have not been tested, but they may work as well.

Warts are typically removed at a clinic, or at home with over-the-counter products. Most over-the-counter products contain salicylic acid. There are also home products available that freeze the warts. Health care providers have stronger substances available to treat warts. Physicians also use freezing, burning, or laser therapy to destroy the warts.

Wart removal with duct tape is appealing for many reasons. It is safe, cheap, and can be done at home. The only potential side effect is duct tape allergy or sensitivity. This method should be discontinued if a rash or irritation develops.

To perform a wart removal with duct tape, the original, plain gray variety should be used. A piece of tape should be cut that is just big enough to cover the wart. After six days, the duct tape is removed and the affected area soaked in water. The wart is then scraped with a pumice stone or emery board. This process is repeated until the wart goes away, which can take up to two months.


Wart removal with duct tape is not for every type of wart. Duct tape removal should never be attempted on genital or anal warts. These warts should only be removed by a health care professional.

Even if the removal is successful, the warts may reoccur. This is true for any type of wart removal. Warts can again be removed by the duct tape method, and repeated as necessary any time a new wart forms.

Other products can be used in conjunction with the duct tape. Apple cider vinegar can be rubbed on the wart before the duct tape is secured. Salicylic acid and nail polish remover have also been reported by some to be effective. The acid and nail polish remover should not be used for warts on the face.

There are several instances in which a health care provider should be contacted. People with diabetes or a weakened immune system should call as soon as a wart is noticed. Other reasons for contacting a health care provider include bleeding that is not easily stopped, pain, or a change in the appearance of the wart. A health care provider should also be consulted if at home remedies have not been effective.


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Post 3

I heard that putting salicylic acid on top of the wart and then putting duct tape works much faster. And you don't have to wait six days. You remove the tape everyday, reapply the salicylic acid and then the duct tape.

Has anyone tried this method? How many days does it take to get rid of warts this way?

Post 2

@anamur-- I'm doing this right now. It's been three weeks. The wart is getting smaller and it doesn't appear that there will be a scar.

I have noticed that the area has become really red though, so I actually took two days off from the duct tape. The redness went away and I've applied it again now. It is almost gone and it hasn't been one month yet.

The other thing is that after the first six days, the skin around the wart was irritated. But that was my mistake because I cut the duct tape too large. My experience has been that if you cut it just right so that it fits over the wart perfectly, it works best.

Post 1

Does the duct tape method leave a scar afterward?

I was seven years old when I had warts on my hand. The doctor burned them off, this was the latest technology to remove warts at that time.

It left scars where the warts were though. People always ask me what happened to my hand.

I wonder if removing warts with duct tape would also leave a similar scar?

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