Cold Sores
Natural Remedies

Cold Sore Relief: Top Natural Remedies

Aloe Vera

6 User Reviews
5 star (5) 
4 star (1) 

Posted by Amanda (Tampa, FL) on 06/19/2008

I have gotten cold sores since I was little. And I am 22 now and i still get them. My docter use to give me this paste for them however it just made them look worse and never helped. Last summer I got cold sores probably about once every 2 weeks. As soon as one was gone another one would come in its place. I have bought everything you can buy at walgreens. None of it works, esp. Abreva the stuff just flat out does not work. I went on the internet one day and found that Aloe Vera, if you put it on the cold sore as soon as it starts it stunts the cold sore and it never gets any bigger. I also use L-Lysine tablets, about 4,000 or more mgs a day if I go to the beach while I don't have a cold sore, I will still take about two or so tablets. Also my docter gave me valtrex which does work well but only if you catch the cold sore right as it is starting to form, which is hard to do since I am not always at home when they start. Carring supplies in your purse is helpful though, I know it's a pain but when you get cold sores you gotta do what you gotta do. Last night I was at work and felt one forming on my lip. It never got any bigger and I thought it wasn't going to but than another one started to form on my lip also. I ran home and put aloe on it but I think i was too late. I am trying Apple Cider Vineger right now and so far it seems to be working so I think this will go in my list for remedies, lol. Thank you!

Replied by Joyce
(Joelton, Tn)
495 posts

Amanda, from Miami, Increase that l-lysine to 2 grams (2000 mgms) 4 x a day and see if it doesn't work. It always works for me at that dosage. You might also consider avoiding high arginine foods, like peanuts.

Amaranth Grain

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Dbkh (Y, Usa) on 03/02/2012

Amaranth Grain is a complete protein grain that is high in Lysine. Lysine tablets, even when kept under lip, never worked for me; But Amaranth Grain, ground into flour with a coffee grinder and used in recipes, really does help. And is VERY healthy to boot.

Replied by Lara
(Bristol, Ct)

Can you give us your recipes, please?

Apple Cider Vinegar

21 User Reviews
5 star (16) 
1 star (3) 

Posted by Anonymous (US) on 07/30/2017

Ok so I soaked Apple Cider Vinegar on a cotten ball and held the cotten ball on my cold sore for maybe more than ten minutes. Once I took it off I realized my lip swelled.. A lot. IF I were to do this again I would only dab on the Apple Cider Vinegar directly on the cold sore. Now I'm sitting in my room with an ice cube to my lip.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Toni (Netherlands) on 05/12/2015

ACV it is! Applied a soaked in Apple Cider Vinegar cotton ball on my sore and put a bandade over it and just left it there, reapplying the Apple Cider Vinegar every hour and within 2 hours the sore was dry....but kept the bandade on after that I applied aloe vera to keep it moist constantly to prevent a scap from forming bye bye sore! So happy with this! It took me 1 day!

Replied by Maayshia D

Hi, umm I have a cold sore right now and so I am using Apple Cider Vinegar on my lip and it has turned white now, does this mean that its working?

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Rubylola (Brisbane, Australia) on 10/28/2012

From time to time I will get a cold sore up my nose which is really itcy and sometimes painful. I normally put cold sore cream on and it will take a few days to scab and heal. Yesterday I woke up with a big blister up there and decided to soak an ear bud in ACV and apply. I was worried it would sting as my nose was quite sore but I did not feel anything at all. I applied the ACV all around my nostril and held it for a minute on the blister. The blister was completely gone from this! I swabbed diluted ACV around the outside area of my nose to make sure it didn't spread and continued to do this throughout the day. The next day there is no scab or anything up my nose, I'm very impressed. I will continue to apply it today to kill anything that may still be lurking. Will be interesting to see if it works the same next time (would be great if there is no next time though! ).

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Please Help (Fort Wayne, In) on 06/06/2012

So if I take 2-3 tablespoos of vinegar a day will this cure the hsv2 virus or do I have to add something else to it?

Replied by Emily
(Alameda, Ca)

I have never heard of such a thing, but if you're going to try it.. I wouldn't take that much, ESPECIALLY all at once.. if you have any negative side effects, they will come on way stronger than you'd appreciate.

Replied by Miserable_in_bama
(Oneonta, Alabama, United States)

try L-lysine 1, 000mg 2x a day, morning and night, and you shouldn't have another outbreak. As for healing what you have, echinacea/goldenseal, red clover, burdock root, pau d' arco, elderberry, acidolphilus. Ech/goldenseal is best, but take acidolphilus or you will get a yeast infection, it is like an antibiotic. Keep it clean and dry. Use witch hazel or tea tree oil to help it heal up. Tea tree oil will dry it out, give you pain relief, and it feels cooling to me.

L-lysine is cheap and I haven't had an outbreak in 2 yrs. I used to get them so bad I passed in and out of consciousness, high fever, extreme joint and muscle aches, dizziness, you name it. Take me a month to heal.

Good luck and God Bless

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Coldsorenomore (Phoenix, Arizona Usa) on 10/13/2011

This is a great site. I LOVE it!

About a year ago I decided to try Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) on a big and ugly cold sore. Having first learned about ACV as a child about 35 years ago and then getting a great education about it from Earth Clinic, the idea just clicked. I took a cotton ball and soaked up a good amount of ACV. I would lie down for about 15 minutes with the wet cotton ball on my lip directly over the cold sore. Sometimes I would apply slight pressure to make sure of good contact. I did this about 3 times per day. The cold sore was completely gone in 3 days. It usually takes 2 weeks, no matter if I apply other mainstream and alternative remedies.

I got another cold sore about 2 weeks ago. It was just coming on. Had to move quickly, because I work with the public. Thankfully, it was during the weekend. I searched my memory about what I had done last time and remembered ACV. I did the same as above, and it was gone in 1 day. No joke and no exaggeration.

The ACV gave me a light burning sensation my lips and not just on the cold sore. My lips peeled mildly for the next few days. I believe there is no harm, and I certainly prefer a little peeling to a big, ugly cold sore. One thing I am cautious about is to keep the ACV on the cotton ball from touching my front teeth to prevent enamel erosion.

I hope this works for you.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Mphs (Mphs, Tn) on 09/17/2011

I used Apple Cider Vinegar on a fever blister and it dried it up immediately.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Ec6270 (Marathon, Fl, Us) on 07/18/2011

Another thumbs up for ACV - started to feel the tingle of fever blister and applied ACV on a cotton pad. Did this for 5 or 10 minutes a twice a day for two days. While there was a small, unnoticable eruption, there was nothing like the usual cycle of blistering and then 5-7 recovery/drying out.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Bill (Boston, Ma, USA) on 05/10/2011

Hi- I love your website!

I have a question regarding the use of apple cider vinegar. Sadly, I also suffer from cold sores, which are brought on by (usually), stress and coffee. To combat them, I try to maintain an alkaline system (i.e. , no acidic foods or drinks), which are known triggers for cold sores.

My question is if you know of any correlation between consuming ACV and the occurance of cold sores. I have been practicing an acid-free diet for a while, with success, and fear the ACV will disrupt this.

Thanks again!

Replied by Gavin
(Manganui, Northland, New Zealand)

Hi re aple cider vinegar and cold sores.. If you feel one starting to bubble up, just dab some ACV on it. It then just collapses.. somehow the vinegar goes in and kills the virus.

Replied by Rea
(Terrytown, Nj)

ACV is actually alkalizing.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Gavin (Manganui, Northland, New Zealand) on 09/18/2010

If you dab ACV on a cold sore it immediatley starts shrinking to nothing.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Pundon2010 (Charlotte, North Carolina) on 01/29/2010

On this past Monday I started to have that "tingling" feeling on my lip meaning the beginning of a cold sore breakout. By mid afternoon I was right, a huge blister in the corner of my mouth ouch!!...after reading the numerous reviews on ACV as a cold sore remedy, I decided to give it a try. On this past Tuesday went to the store an got the ACV and put some on a cotton ball. Without a moments notice the cold sore started to burn like someone had threw perm on my face!!!!...but after a few moments the burning sensation went away. About an hour later the cold sore had reduced in size. I did the same thing again before I went to bed. When I woke up the next morning the cold sore had reduced in size about 1/2 inch and had began to crack as if it was drying out already!!!!....YAY!! I thought, But to my dismay there was yet another cold sore peeking its ugly head out from beneath my lower lip. After having success with the other sore, I kept reapplying the ACV with a cotton ball 4-5 times a day for both sores for approximately 3 days. Today is Friday and I am glad to say that both sores are gone!!!!! more ooze and pus filled of right now they are in the healing process, so they are scabbing over. Thanks Everyone and Earth Clinic for your wonderful tips on how to combat such an embarrassing condition!!!!..I will defintely be ready with the ACV when the next one comes!!!!!!

Replied by Ella
(Roanoke, Va)

I have suffered with 6 or 7 cold sore outbreaks within one year, and this remedy is the ONLY thing that has made my sores disappear so quickly! I usually use popular over the counter topical meds (like Abreva)and take acyclovir (aka Valtrex). It's hard to tell how much those really shorten the duration of an episode. But with this remedy, it's very clear that the "life" of my sores has been shortened. I broke out 2 days ago, began applying ACV with a Q-tip to the sores. First time it helped the sores to burst and begin the healing process. Since then I've been applying several times a day, followed by a Q-tip with organic tea tree oil to help soothe the burning and dry them out. My episodes usually last at LEAST a week, but at the rate these sores are healing it's looking like it'll be closer to 3-4 days. What a difference! I highly reccomend this remedy.

Replied by Larry
(Sacramento, Ca)

From my experience besides eating right and taking lysine, zinc, vitamin C and any other immune booster vitamin you choose; A natural product from is the only product I've tried that works immediately. Everything else takes awhile to reduce and go away.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Nyx (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) on 01/16/2010

Reaction to ACV?

I applied apple cider vinegar on a cold sore that was on the left side my botton lip (almost on the inner part). I did this at least every hour for a few days. I would hold it there for at least a minute each time. No reaction at all.

Then I stared to get a bump on the right side of my lower lip, but inside (on the inner part). I don't know if it's a canker sore or cold sore (I know you get canker sores in your mouth but I don't know HOW far in they have to be to not consider it a cold sore) but I put acv on it. There was also a small cut in that area from picking off dry skin. Well I applied the acv less than 10 times throughout the course of a day and that area of my lip swelled up twice it size. I also felt some pretty intense tingling. I stopped for a day and took an allergy pill and it went down. Just to see what would happen I tried applying some acv tonight and it has swelled up again.

So I put acv on the first sore MANY times and nothing happened. But when I put it on the second one it reacted? Why?

Replied by Tahiti
(Pittsburgh, Pa)

I had the exact same thing happen to me. I used it on a cold sore on my lip and a canker sore. When I used it on the canker sore, it made my lip swell really big. It did nothing for my cold sore either. What can be used to make a canker sore heal quickly and go away even more quickly?

Replied by Sam
(Seattle, Wa)

I hadn't had and outbreak for years until I started messing with my PH with ACV. I'm not saying it is the cause, but it certainly didn't help. For dinner the night before I had shrimp, crawdads, fried catflish and cajun fries with Sierra Mist. That might have sucked out all my bicarbonate reserves.

Normally ACV alkanizes but the day the outbreak started and two days after, neither ACV or baking soda with water could get my PH to go above 5. I tried dabbing ACV on a developing sore and it didn't do a thing.

Replied by Lou
(Tyler, Tx)

Catfish, cajun fries and crawdads? You eat like my husband and he has a cold sore tonight that erupted into a facial infection of sorts. Not a good diet. Eat a salad!!! Alkaline diet!!!

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Laura (Cape Cod, Ma) on 12/06/2009

Found your site while searching for natural wart remedies and read up on all the things that Apple Cider Vinegar is supposed to help. My husband suffers from cold sores (herpes) thankfully, infrequently. But he was getting a really large one and tried the ACV on it and it really worked. Soak a cotton ball with ACV and place on the area as soon as you feel tingling. Do this as often as possible for the first 24 hrs and it skips the whole burning and breakout period. The sore went right to crusting over and healing in about 4 days. We had to write in because your site helped him so much! thank you...will respond to the wart ACV remedy too because that works too!

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Pamm (Birmingham, Al) on 07/24/2009

Cold Sores: This site has been amazing & I have loved it! I hate taking medication for anything, so I try all of these natural remedies first. And I have had some Down Falls. But more good then bad. Everyone is different so not everything will work for everyone. I noticed I had a virus of some sort and noticed my lips were tingling and sore and I had many blisters forming quickly. I did not have my usual cold sore medication and I hate fever blisters so I came on here and read about the Apple Cider Vinegar Cure. I am not going to put fingernail polish remover on my lips because of the toxins in it, so I tried the ACV and it burned but not too bad. I did this throughout the day and by nighttime I could see they were drying up & looked better. Here it is the next morning. Not completely gone, but less noticeable no tingling, no pain, they are almost completely dried up. They are not hurting like they were yesterday. Also try taking Valtrex, you have to get a prescription from your doctor but it works. It boost your immune system. But I was amazed that this Apple Cider Vinegar worked so quickly! I am going to keep doing it today, and I know they will not come out if I keep it soaked down with the natural Apple Cider Vinegar. Natural all the way!

Replied by Susan
(Sarasota, Fl)

Apple Cider Vinegar will stop the progress of herpes. I have an occasional occurrence on my leg. Simply soak a small cotton ball with ACV and cover with a bandaid or tape. Change throughout the day and keep on over night. Amazingly, within a day, you will see you are winning the war!!! I also succeeded in removing a large wart from my finger.