There are three main ways of removing a skin mole.
- Surgical, including excision, laser surgery and freezing or cyosurgery
- Commercially prepared creams which you can apply at home
- Other preparations and natural products which you can prepare yourself and apply at home.
Let’s check out how some of the over the counter creams work.
But first a word of warning – Any home mole removal treatment should only be used on common benign moles. Moles which are growing in size, large moles, moles with an irregular shape or a ragged border, moles which have changed colour or are multicoloured, moles which are itchy or bleed easily – in fact any mole which looks or acts differently – should be checked by your doctor or dermatologist. Moles of these types may be precancerous or not moles at all. Melanomas, a form of skin cancer, look very like moles and may develop from them. Untreated melanomas can spread to other parts of the body as aggressive cancers, and are a major killer of young people. Any suspicious mole must be examined by a doctor and surgically removed if cancerous or likely to become so.
OK, so you’ve checked your moles and they are all normal.
The first and largest group is based on corrosive plant material or derivatives from plants. A single treatment is usually enough for each mole, and the treatment involves applying a cream to the mole, leaving it in place for 15 to twenty minutes, washing it off, and waiting for the mole to dissolve or drop off, usually within three weeks.
Because the active ingredients of these creams are often highly irritating to normal skin, it should only be applied to the mole. These creams should probably not be used on more sensitive skin, or close to your eyes.
Mole removal creams of this type are based on traditional treatments using sap from the roots of a plant called bloodroot. Although they can be used safely and effectively, bloodroot preparations should be used with great care. Of the commonly available mole removal creams, only Dermatend is based on bloodroot.
Other creams are based on less irritating plants, often unnamed. Brand names include
NoNevus, Nevi No More, Wart Mole Vanish, ItWorksPaste, Nevexen and Mole & Wart EZ Clear.
The manufacturers of some of these creams claim or imply that they can also reduce or treat cancerous cells. There may be some evidence that some of the ingredients of these creams reduce the growth rate of cancer cells in laboratory experiments, but they have not been fully tested, and I personally regard claims like this as being most irresponsible. Given the aggressive nature of melanomas, and the rapid and fatal consequences if the melanoma spreads to other parts of the body, it is a no brainer that any cancerous mole should be surgically removed.
Most of these over the counter products, including those marketed solely over the internet, do work. They have the advantage that they are one shot treatments, and only require less than half an hour of your time. Their success rate is reasonable, but relies on getting the amount of cream applied to your mole just right. Too little and the mole may return, bigger and brighter than ever. Too much and healthy skin around and under the mole may be destroyed as well, leading to some pain, scarring and skin discoloration. It is perhaps best to use too little than too much, and try again if the mole doesn’t completely disappear.
Some of these Mole Removal Creams are quite expensive, particularly if bought direct from the suppliers, or come in tiny quantities. However, many brands can be bought more cheaply through Amazon (where you can often find independent customer reviews) or over eBay.
Another group of home mole removal treatments include common plant related materials such as onion, garlic, cashew nuts and vinegar. These and other similar plants usually take some time to work, if they work at all, and it may be a matter of weeks before there is any
evidence of anything happening. I plan to review these possible remedies in a future article, but let’s put them aside for now.
An exception to these doubtful remedies is the combination of castor oil and baking soda, both easily obtainable products, and with an excellent success record if applied correctly. There are a number of manuals on how to apply these products to moles (and warts and skin tags) and they all cost a small amount. This link will take you to the best presented of these books on Home Mole Removal.
The advantage of this type of treatment is that it is painless, scar free, safe and effective, with a success rate better than 95%. The main disadvantage is that it requires the application of the cream three times a day until the mole dissolves or drops off. This may happen in as little as three days, but for larger or more persistent moles it may take a little longer. If this sounds OK to you, then follow this link to Get Rid of Your Moles at Home.
If it sounds a bit too fiddly and time consuming, then perhaps the one shot over the counter Mole Removal Creams are for you – the link will take you to the best prices available.