How To Treat Molluscum Contagiosum

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The most effective treatment for molluscum contagiosum is to soak the molluscum papules in apple cider vinegar for about 15-18 hours. The vinegar will soak through the skin and kill the virus, and it will also kill any virus that has not yet matured on the skin areas that were soaked. It's as simple as that.

For the treatment, you will need the following:

  • Apple cider vinegar. Make sure it contains 5% acetic acid concentration. It will say this on the label. Most are 5%. Do not use less than 5% because it may not be strong enough. Do not use a concentration more than 5% because it may harm your skin. If you want to use another kind of vinegar (e.g. white vinegar), you do so at your own risk. I myself tried apple cider vinegar and can vouch for its effectiveness. I am not sure about other vinegar types.
  • Cotton pads. They will be soaked in vinegar and placed on the molluscum to keep it moist with vinegar for several hours. The flat circular pads used for makeup removal are ideal. They are thin, but can still soak up liquid. They can be cut to any size you need. You can also use cotton balls, but they are bulky and uncomfortable. Do not use gauze because it may not soak the vinegar properly.
  • Good quality adhesive tape (duct tape will work too) or band aids. They will be used to keep the soaked cotton in place for several hours. I found band aids to work best because they stick better.
  • A pair of scissors to cut the cotton and the tape.


Step 1
Make sure the area you want to treat is clean and free from sweat, dirt, or oil, otherwise the tape will not stick properly. So wash it first with soap and water.

Step 2
Rub vinegar onto the general area where there is molluscum. This will kill any virus on the skin and prevent infecting yourself while you are performing the treatment. So, soak a cotton pad with the apple cider vinegar, and use it to soak gently the molluscum area. Do this for at least a minute minutes. Make sure you dry the area well after so that the tape will stick.

Step 3
Soak a piece of cotton pad in the vinegar and squeeze some of the excess off. Make sure though that it is still very moist (i.e if the pad is squeezed, it will drip). Place the soaked pad on the area you want to treat, and tape over it with the tape or the band aid. It is best to tape over it completely so that it does not dry out. It needs to remain in place for 15-18 hours. If you are treating an isolated bump, then just cut out a piece of pad that is slightly bigger than the bump, and tape over it. If you are treating several bumps that are very close to each other, then use a large piece of pad that covers the area. Cut it out to the shape of the area, and tape over it. Use several tapes to cover it completely and secure it in place. You can even use the extra large band aid sizes to cover the large area.

Because the vinegar is acidic, you may feel a slight burning sensation in the treated areas, especially overnight. When you remove the pads the next day, the pad should still be a bit moist, and the bumps will have become white and have grown considerably in size. This is because they have been soaked and are puffy.  It is very important that the pad remain moist and the bumps remain soaked for at least 15-18 hours.  If the pad is completely dry, and the bumps are not puffy, then it means that you did not do a good job at sealing off the area with tape. In this case, you will probably need to reapply the treatment and tape it more securely this time.

Step 4
After removing the pads, soak the general area again for about 15 minutes like you did in Step 2. Just in case.

You can wash off the area now to get rid of the smell of vinegar. Taking a shower works well. The bumps will start to dry off and shrink back to the previous size over the next day. Then, they will crust over and turn dark red, brown, or even black in color. The crust will fall off on the 3rd or 4th day. At this point, the bumps will be a bit smaller than when you started the treatment, and will continue to shrink over the next few days. The surrounding skin that was soaked with vinegar may be pinkish and slightly tender for a couple of days.

If you followed the procedure carefully, and do not have any other infections that you are not aware of, then your molluscum should be cured. However, it is important to monitor your skin on a daily basis and watch for any new molluscum bumps. It takes 2 weeks to a month for a new infection to appear, so you may have infected yourself in another area of your body before the treatment and it did not show up yet. Or you may have missed an area in your treatment. Make sure you locate any new bumps and treat them right away. You do not need to soak new bumps for a very long period. 5-10 hours should do it. But make sure you treat the whole area just in case.


I have used this treatment on myself and my children, so I know it works.

By CaliforniaDreamin

There's not much that I'd like to share. I just joined this site because I had some useful info to offer. I hope I am of help to you.

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I am not a medical doctor. I know this treatment works, but you may have special skin conditions that make it inappropriate for you. Do not use this treatment on very sensitive skin, on children under 2-3 years old, or on any sensitive parts of your body.

Use this treatment at your own risk. I am not responsible for any problems that may occur whether you apply it properly or not.


jordan   10 years ago
I came across this treatment in several other places. There's someone who even charges like $20 for it on some site. Thanks for sharing tho
EmmaSpeaks   10 years ago
Yeah apple cider vinegar does the trick
jenLA   10 years ago
FOLKS DON'T USE THIS. I heard of ACV a while back and used it and ended up getting treated for chemical burns on my legs. you're playing with fire with this one.
RickPlatt   10 years ago
My son has molluscum all over his back. We tried several treatment but they keep coming back. Thanks for making this recommendation available hope it works
Sammy32   10 years ago
Good advice thanks for sharing

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