Last Modified on Apr 27, 2016
Treatment of molluscum contagiosum focuses on eliminating the virus causing the condition. Many natural treatments are effective including apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil and elderberry extract. Keeping the affected area clean and avoiding cross contamination of other areas is also important for eliminating the condition.
What is Molluscum Contagiosum?
A relatively common viral infection of the skin, molluscum contagiosum presents as round, firm bumps on the skin ranging in size from that of a pinhead to an eraser. The characteristic bumps typically appear with a small indentation or dot on the top and may become inflamed, red or irritated.
Natural Remedies for Viral Infections of the Skin
Molluscum contagiosum is a viral infection of the skin. As such, treatment requires eliminating the underlying infection causing the condition and preventing further spread. Apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil and elderberry extract have antiseptic properties that eliminate infection and clear the skin from the inside out.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a natural agent with extensive antibacterial qualities. When applied to the affected area, the apple cider vinegar penetrates the skin and eliminates the source of infection. The vinegar is particularly effective for eliminating the cores of the affected areas.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a natural antiseptic and antifungal agent. When applied topically, the oil infiltrates the skin and eradicates the underlying infection associated with molluscum contagiosum. Tea tree oil is also used for treating a number of other fungal conditions.
Elderberry extract is also an antiviral agent. When applied topically or taken orally, elderberry extract fights infection and eliminates symptoms of infection. The compound has also been used for treating the flu and other viral conditions.
Molluscum contagiosum is a common condition of the skin that resembles typical acne and spreads very quickly. Effective natural treatment including the topical application of apple cider vinegar as well as other treatments eliminates the underlying infection as well as the outward symptoms of the condition.
Remedies for Molluscum Contagiosum
The Popularity of Molluscum Contagiosum Remedies - Full List
[YEA] Molluscum Contagiosum: My bf got this and gave it to me. We've tried everything. For him, he had hundreds and nothing worked (ACV, conzerol, TTO/Iodine, 30 PPM silver sol; hospital grade, etc. ). We went the popping route, b/c he had hundreds, and that slowed it. He would also keep the area covered.
For me, I had a couple very large ones. I knew what to look for, since his diagnosis, and when I would see any small pimply looking spot, I quickly covered it with a zinc-based pink tape, called Hy-Tape. The next day if they were angry (usually got bigger with a red ring around it and a white bullseye in the middle), I knew it was MC. The problem is they start out looking like a regular pimple, but quickly change. Mine were on my back and refused to pop, even using a hypodermic needle. I had bought an herbal formula containing Allicin, Elderberry Extract, Olive Leaf Extract and Oregano Oil for something else and decided to try it out on the MC lesions, b/c it had some of the recommended ingredients for treatments. I had to cut the capsule open with a knife (it's a hard shell), carefully, and then used flat ended toothpicks to scoop a little bit of the oil in the capsule out and carefully laid it on top of the lesion. Then I covered it up with the Hy-Tape and left it for a day. The next day, the lesions would come to a full head and the core comes out as a gooey mess on the tape. When I removed the tape, I knew it was for sure molluscum by the amount of blood that came from the lesions. These bleed like a scraped mole and not a pimple. I cleaned the area with alcohol q-tips and repeated for one week. I then continued to keep the lesions covered for one more week with just tape, even though the core was gone, until they were very small. I only used one toothpick side and q-tip side, PER lesion. Never double dipping anything.
This is what finally worked for me. I didn't take the formula orally, but it may help even more.
Apple Cider Vinegar
224 User Reviews
| 57 YEA
| 7 BETTER BUT NOT CURED
| 2 WARNINGS!
| 2 SIDE EFFECTS Treatment
Apple Cider Vinegar Remedy for Molloscum Contagiosum
Folk Cure Ingredients
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Cotton Swab (Q-Tip)
- Medical Tape
Apply the antibacterial qualities of apple cider vinegar (ACV) to the task by soaking a cotton makeup swab in ACV and then taping it over the affected skin. You can leave this treatment on overnight and later reapply as needed. The papules will turn white (possibly with black cores) and then fall off or disappear within several days.
|BETTER BUT NOT CURED (7)||10%|
|SIDE EFFECTS (2)||3%|
[YEA] So I found what I thought was an in-grown hair. I tried to pop it but it didn't pop like they normally would and there was more blood than usual. I didn't think much more of it at the time.
Fast forward a month later and I discovered that I had 11 bumps in that region after trimming. I freaked out and spent the next couple of hours researching it on the internet. I never heard of molluscum contagiosum (MC) before but I was pretty certain of my self-diagnosis. I scheduled an appointment with my doctor ASAP just in case. I wanted to be sure before I made the calls to the girls I've... touched skin with in the recent past.
After my hours of research over the internet, I came to the conclusion that apple cider vinegar (ACV) was the best remedy for this ailment. It was cheaper, natural, seemed to work quicker, and had no alarming side effects (the only two are 1) the smell and 2) burning of the skin if you get ACV that's too strong for you). So I ran to the store and bought what I didn't already have from this list:
* apple cider vinegar (5%)
* cotton balls
* Neosporin/triple anti-biotic
* daily multi-vitamin
I applied cotton balls lightly soaked with ACV to the bumps using band-aids twice a day: in the morning before work (I'd use less since the smell was pretty bad), and at night after a shower (the more ACV, the better). I essentially had them covered all day. I did this until the bumps became really big and easy to remove (1-3 days depending on their size). I extracted the white stuff using my finger nails - trying to be careful not to spread it or cause scars by removing too much skin. Some turned black before I removed the core but I removed the stuff from them anyway. After I de-cored them, they scabbed over and became "infected" with red circles around them (no big deal, though). I applied Neosporin/triple anti-biotic to them twice a day. The scabs fell off after about a week. It took another week for the red circles to completely disappear. The healing process would have probably been quicker had I realized I was using expired (by 3 years) triple anti-biotic. My wounds healed faster in a day than they did in a week once I started using a brand new bottle.
All in all, it took about 2 weeks to rid myself from this without a trace after discovering it. However, I was probably not contagious after the first 3 days. That is, once I removed the last core. I'm going to have to check my body for the next 6 months, though.
Wish me luck and good luck to you!
* Don't use the same towel twice to dry off after taking a shower during this period (to help prevent the spread of it)
* Drink 4 tbsp max of ACV (diluted in water to your liking) before, during or after meals (to help boost your immune system)
* Take a daily multivitamin (to help boost your immune system)
* Drink lots of water (to help boost your immune system)
* Get an adequate amount of sleep (to help boost your immune system)
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Posted by Anonymous (San Luis Obispo, Ca) on 10/29/2015
[BETTER BUT NOT CURED] I am so relieved to have found this website: I've had molluscum for almost a year now, and it has been such a hard time with the freeze-burns, doctors with no suggestions, and having to stop intimacy with others almost completely. I found this website just days ago and started using Apple Cider Vinegar and lemon myrtle just 4 days ago, and am already seeing major improvements! Every time I find a moment of the day at home (usually mornings and late evenings) I wipe my legs over with a cotton ball soaked in ACV. I spot treatment with the lemon myrtle, and it also masks the smell. It's been better every day.
Thank you everyone!
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Posted by Beryl (Surrey) on 09/08/2015
[YEA] After reading several posts regarding Molluscum, I decided to try the cider vinegar method, my 9 yr old daughter had been suffering from this infection for several months and my GP on numerous visits said we just had to ride it out, which is easier said than done when you see your childs self confidence slipping.
I began using cider vinegar on 20.8.15. I began by giving my daughter a shower and she washed in a tea tree body wash, once fully dried I applied the cider vinegar on pads and used medical tape to secure them, but she found them too irritating so we took them off.
As it was the school holidays, I would wipe her legs over in the morning and after showering again at night with cider vinegar, I also popped some of the spots but made sure that I kept the vinegar away from these.
I am amazed to say that the spots have nearly all gone and I now only apply the cider vinegar in the evenings, she moisturizes her legs every morning with coca butter cream.
I also changed her bedding, towels and nightwear every other night.
If you're not sure how your child's skin may react to vinegar, perhaps do a test on a out of sight area.
Posted by Lori (San Diego, Ca) on 05/01/2015
[YEA] After finding this site and reading the posts, I have been using the ACV on cotton balls secured by band aids for 5 days now. Almost all of my bumps have "gone black"! I imagine they will be completely gone in a day or two. I am so grateful to have found this page because my doctor told me the only way to get rid of them was to freeze them off, but dermatology (they only ones who have the freezy stuff) couldn't see me for 3 more months!! Can you imagine how much it would have spread in that time?! ?
For those who are interested:
1. I used the full 5% dilution as it came from the bottle. I didn't experience any stinging or scarring
2. I also took the ACV internally (it's good for all kinds of stuff and I figured it couldn't hurt, right?) 2tbsp in 8-12 oz of cold water every morning. If you/your children don't like the flavor, you can add a little honey and lemon. It masks the vinegar taste quite well.
3. For the first 2 days, I was using small pieces of paper towel, but that didn't hold the vinegar as well. On day 3 I switched to cotton balls and that's when I noticed the biggest change in the bumps. Perhaps this would've happened on day 3 anyway, but I think the switch was part of it.
4. I took 2 "detox" baths to include 1/2 cup each of baking soda and Epsom salts. I have no idea if this contributed to my healing or not, but I know it didn't hurt!
Thanks again for this site and for posting your experiences! You totally saved me :)
Posted by Linda (Danli, Honduras) on 04/08/2015
[YEA] I have two boys, the eldest (5) got Molluscum last year and we took him to a dermatologist inmediately..she took advantage of our worry (and ignorance) because she made it seem very awful and contagious for the baby (in the time he was 6 months). She convinced us of doing curetage, but he had to be asleep (anesthesia). It was horrible worrying and when he woke up it was terrible! We felt guilty for putting him thru that, but the dermatologist assured us it was the only way. On january this year, I noticed it was appearing on the baby (now 18m) and I wasn't going to be convinced to do it because I had read that there were natural remedies, plus it was super expensive and not covered by insureance. I searched and searched (in 3 days he had more than 60 marks, on torso and arms) and I found this site, which was truly helpful. At first I tried with the bandaids and cotton balls, but having a twitchy and wiggly toddler doesn't help (bandaids also left his skin very red). So I started bathing him with 1 cup of apple cider vinegar in his bathtub (the smell is very strong) for at least 20 min, didn't wash it out..he smelled funky but it was totally worth it! I started on feb 15 and by march 30 he had only 1 left! No squishing anything o using bandaids, just the apple cider vinergar on bath, changing towels everyday, clothes at least 3 times a day, bed sheets twice a week and vuala! We couldn't be more satisfied and grateful!
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Posted by Squiffle (England) on 01/06/2015
[YEA] Thanks to all those that recommended Apple Cider vinegar for Molluscum Contagiosum. It totally worked.
We applied them using cotton balls soaked in the vinegar and plasters to keep them in place. We also used sea salts in the bath for a soak.
A tip would be to do it once overnight and then check the ones that have turned white or black. The black ones are then done and just need to heal and the white ones are probably done so don't do them again just monitor them. If you do them again it could hurt and maybe scar. Use a moisturizing cream with antibacterial elements for during the day.
Took about a week to turn them into feint marks and they look like they'll be gone soon.
This works well on the raised spots and not so much on any brand new ones, so if you have any new ones just wait it out and do them when they are ready.
Another thing to mention is that you should take steps to avoid it spreading as when they open up you are at most riks of spreading it. Just regularly wash bedding and towls and detoll your life up!
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Posted by Cooper (Victoria, British Columbia) on 12/03/2014
[YEA] I had to post because this worked so well!
My little girl was about 15 months when I first noticed some spots on her leg. At first I thought it was from the eczema that she had on her legs, but once it spread to her tummy (an area that her leg touched at diaper changes etc.) I realized it was something else. A doctor confirmed it to be molluscum contagiosum and told me that it would go away with time. He said that it could be 'zapped' as a wart to try to kickstart the immune system, but it might not work and could possibly scar and be painful. I left it for a few months, but it of course spread to the point that she had approximately 50 spots on her leg and torso and they had begun to spread to an arm. I was looking for answers everywhere when I came across these posts and decided to give ACV a try as I worried they might spread to her face.
As another poster suggested, I purchased dot bandages (used for shots). I made a mixture of 50/50 ACV & water mixture and cut small squares (small enough to fit on the bandage pad) of a make-up pad to soak in the ACV mix. I squeezed out the excess mixture and applied the bandage to the spots before bedtime and removed in the morning. I told my daughter these were her 'special stickers', so she was mostly okay with them being on, though she did pull a few off here and there. I generally covered a dozen spots (usually the most mature looking ones) each time.
After about 3 nights of application the spots began to turn dark, and scab over. I also dabbed the ACV mix (using clean cotton swabs) on the unbandaged spots before putting on pajamas.
I became diligent about using clean towels after each bath/shower, putting on clean pajamas and keeping her nails short in case she scratched the spots.
I think the worst part for her was when I reapplied the bandage to the same spot more than once, the skin around got a bit tender in some places, but really this was only on one or two spots.
It has been over a month since my last application and I haven't seen another spot since. She does have some small dark scars from some spots, but they are clearing up too and I am sure they will be gone without a trace over the next few months. Perhaps this was what was needed to alert her immune system to kick in and fight any future spots, but I can say that I am 100% confident that the ACV was what helped us to clear up the existing molluscum contagiosum.
Thank you to everyone who posted their positive experiences, and good luck to those who are looking for help, I hope this is what works for you.
Posted by Believer (New York) on 11/10/2014
[YEA] I have to say I have been a bit skeptical of these online diagnosis-type sites. This is the first time I have ever posted on a site like this before and I am doing so because I wanted to share my experience.
I had first noticed a few red spots on the shaft of my penis and thought it might be acne. I was in the middle of a road trip and showering wasn't happening too frequently.. I may have picked up the infection from one of the sleazy motels that I stayed at but anyway.. I thought they were pimples but they only got worse. During the day they weren't as visible so I thought they went away. Only when I returned from my road trip did I start thinking that something was wrong. I started freaking out thinking that I had herpes or genital warts. I did hours of research and read through this site's posts before I tried ACV. I've been doing it now for a few days and I can see a huge improvement. It started working immediately. I had cut my ACV with water quite a bit for the first few days. This is because I read a horror story of someone getting permanent skin scarring from using a 5% strength solution. On a side note this is what Bragg comes diluted at.. as long as you cut it a little I found that it works like a miracle. I wasn't fond of the idea of a doctors visit and I'm glad that this treatment worked out for me. Don't be nervous if it looks like more are popping up after you start. Its just the ACV doing its work. I think I am on day 5 and at a stronger dose than the first 4. I can see a huge improvement, It really works. Just be careful with your strength and you should be good.
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Posted by Ehlana (New York, New York) on 10/09/2014
[YEA] I want to thank everybody, who contributed, this website has really helped me, so I want give back by telling what helped for me.
I initially thought I had genital warts, but none of the bumps/warts were actually in the genitalia, although they were really close. Luckily, I only had about 10 bumps and I never squeeze/scratch them out of fear for scarring, so luckily they didn't spread. I've to be upfront here, this isn't an overnight solution, nor will they be gone in two weeks, but it won't take months either, if you manage to contain them.
Week 1 & 2
I treated the MC with ACV, using a Q-tip, several times a day. At night, I cut off tiny pieces of makeup pads, soaked them in ACV and used medical tape to secure them. I find medical tape to be less painful than bandaids, especially that area. The ACV stung a bit, but bearable, trick is to cut the makeup pads just a bit bigger than the bump itself, in order to not burn the healthy skin. I also took baths with Epsom salt and changed towels after every use. Nothing happened for 2 days, then the MC started to turn angry red and after a week started to scab over. My inner tights looked awful, red raised bumps with black cores. I continued applying ACV and taping even after the scab came up. I don't know whether that was the right thing or not, but better safe than sorry. I stopped the taping at night when they were all scabbed over, but continued using the q-tip soaked in ACV. Once the scabs started to fall off, I used Vaseline and after a tip from a friend, Aquaphore.
At this point, most of the scabs have fallen off, however theres still a raised bump without a core and it's still red. I stopped the ACV and continued with Aquaphore several times a day and that made the skin heal quicker than Vaseline.
Bumps are still there, some still red, but have flatten a bit, others are close to disappearing. I even tried this whole treatment on a bump on my leg that my dermatologist said is just a benign bump, which will just remain there. Not anymore thanks to ACV!
I want to stress that I wasn't feeling well when I started having the MC, but started to take more vitamins (B, Zinc, multi vitamins) and ate even healthier than I usually do, no processed food, lots of fruit, etc. and I think I'm almost cleared of it.
I hope this helps!
Posted by Nikorah (San Antonio, Tx) on 03/24/2014
ACV does work for Molloscum Contagiosum, but its best if you can treat one lesion at a time otherwise it can hurt or burn your healthy skin, which becomes dry and irritated, then you scratch and cause them to spread. It will make your healthy skin look like road rash.
I have also read that you can put Vaseline on the areas that you don't want effected, not sure if this would cause all your band aids to come off Though, so it may not be practical.
Burning/freezing them off is not a good idea on a child because kids can't help but scratch and rub the blisters, this causes major spreading. Also if you still decide to try the Beatle juice, wash it off two hours after application, don't rub. I have taken my daughter several time to have this done and such bad blistering seemed unnecessary so I took her to another Dr. and he told me the shower trick. I tried it and it worked! The lesions died and she didn't have major blistering, just red where applied. My other Dr. Said to not wash it off for 24 hrs! What a difference it made.
Soak a small piece of cotton in the apple cider vinegar (just the kind you buy at grocery store)put directly over the lesion and cover with a bandaid. (Stock up on band aids cuz you will use a ton) Do this twice a day if possible. Best time to do this is right after a warm shower because the ACV will be able to penetrate easieR because the warts will be swollen.
Posted by Struggling Momma (Alberta, Canada) on 01/14/2014
I've spent many hours reading about this nasty virus. I need some specific advice from anyone who can help with my questions.
First here are the circumstances: My 5 yr old girl has it. It started on her inner thighs about 4.5 months ago, but has now moved up to her groin/private region, and back of her knees. She has been treated by a dermatologist 3 times (over a 3.5 month period) with "Cantharone Plus"(Extract from a beetle, blistering agent). Each treatment has gotten progressively worse. The appointments are at least 4-6 weeks apart, the drug leaves her with LARGE painful blisters, and she has more bumps each time we go. I don't think I can do this to her again, it is awful. I did try Tea Tree oil twice a day (morn and eve) for a week and a half, with no results at all, except irritated skin.
She could barely walk yesterday (1 hr post treatment) they are so raw and red and must be very painful. She was a trouper though! I washed her and patched her up last night so she could sleep. Please note, she has quite sensitive skin. Bandages and medical tape usually leave red, scaly skin, and she has Exzema, but not often or in large patches. She doesn't do well with scented or coloured soap/ bodywash. So now to my questions:
1) I want to try the ACV treatment I've been reading about. BUT do I wait until the large blisters have subsided? I am guessing it will be INCREDIABLEY painful to put ACV on them in this state! ?
2) What is the ACV concentration amount? So how much ACV do I apply, and do I leave wet cotton balls/ pads in place bandaged or taped on? Or just dab on with a Q-Tip? How do you keep them stuck on wet skin? Do you cover each bump with a bandage or sterile dressing? Or is it better to leave them open? * concern with not covering them is reinfection of each leg, due to thighs rubbing*
3) Do you do this 1 or 2 times daily? (she is in school so only possible morn and eve)
4) I have been applying Kids Polysporin to the Large Blistered ones but not the small white bumps because it helps with the pain and she had 2 infected bumps last time around, so has anyone else tried this? Does it help or hinder the process?
5) Dermatlgst stated people with Exzema and skin conditions more susceptible to MC. Wear looser pants, no more tights, a thick barrier cream to stop chaffing of thighs. Baths better than showers, no bubbles, no oils. Aveeno oatmeal may be good. Pat dry, don't rub. All this info is well and good but some seems contradictory to what I keep reading. Particularly the bath over shower part. Perhaps bathing in ACV? Any suggestions please?
6) My child LOVES the swimming pool, and we go often. She also has swim lessons once a week. Do we bandage them all each time we go? Would a swim suit with legs be of any use? Any suggestions??
7) Lastly, if anyone has experience in dealing with this in a child, in such a sensitive body area please pass any info along, I would really appreciate it.
Thanks so much for your time,
One Frustrated Mum
P.S. I am Vigilant about not wearing pants more than once, keeping hands away from that area (tough when going to bathroom though) and only using towels once.
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Posted by Carlisha (Leesville,la) on 01/01/2014
[YEA] My daughter suffered with mollusum contagium for over a year..
None of the prescriptions seemed to be working, at my request my daughter began taking cimetidine twice a day. I saw this suggestions for Apple cider vinegar, we started bathing her in it daily. After one week half her bumps were gone. At this point we stopped the oral medication and used only the vinegar... Guess what - she is completely bump free!!!! It saved us from the constant itching and scratching...thank you for suggesting this . I'm one relieved mama.
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San Antonio, US
Posted by Susan (Hartford, Ct) on 03/09/2013
[YEA] I found this site after my son was diagnosed with molluscum on his face. The dr recommended CompoundW. However, I decided to try to ACV treatment and I cannot be more happy with the results.
I used a piece of a cotton ball moistened with full strength ACV, held in place with a bandaid. After the first night, the molluscum spots already showed signs of dying- the center turned black. We continued the treatment almost nightly for about three weeks. The area does become irritated and reddened, so we either cut the ACV with water, or only did the treatment every other night. Within three weeks they were completely gone, and only red marks remained- these lasted a few weeks but are now mostly gone and I expect will fade completely.
One excellent discovery: my other son had a plantar wart on his toe so I decided to try the treatment on that as well, and within the same amount of time his wart was GONE. We had had trouble with warts in the past and had a heck of a time getting rid of them-- months and months. I wish we had known about the ACV before.
I am amazed that my son's doctor had never heard about it.