Sebaceous cysts can appear virtually anywhere on the body where there is hair, although they are most common on the chest, neck and head. These growths appear under the skin, when the sebaceous glands are blocked. Since they’re not considered harmful, doctors don’t usually recommend removing them. Unfortunately, they can be unsightly and may even be worrisome to someone who has never seen them. Here are several home remedies you can use to get rid of them.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a popular home remedy with many different uses. To remove a cyst, apply the vinegar directly to it and cover the area with a bandage. Leave the bandage on for at least 3 days, after which you will notice that a hard layer has formed on the cyst. Upon gently removing the layer, pus from inside will also be removed. Once you have cleaned the area, apply another bandage and leave it on for 2 to 3 days. By this time, the cyst should either be gone or close to gone. You can read more about how apple cider vinegar helps in this article about remedies for sebaceous cyst.
Baking soda is useful for various types of skin problems, including sebaceous cysts. Its anti-inflammatory properties are ideal for helping reduce the associated swelling. Mix 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda with 3 to 4 drops of cool water to make a thick paste. Apply the paste directly to the cyst and leave it on for about 30 minutes. Use lukewarm water to wash off the paste, then repeat three times per day, until the cyst disappears.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has numerous anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It’s a popular remedy for headaches, acne, cold, cough, warts and various other conditions. To treat a cyst, simply apply the oil directly to the affected area. It will provide a protective layer over the cyst, while simultaneously reducing bacterial growth in the region. You can also dilute it in a 1 to 9 ratio that you can apply several times a day.
Another surprising remedy can be found in the use of potatoes. Potatoes are loaded with vitamin C, which is helpful in the removal of dead skin cells. All that is needed is to slice up a potato and place a slice on top of the cyst. Cover the area with a bandage and leave it covered overnight. Clean the area off in the morning, replace the potato slice with a fresh one and cover it with a new bandage.
Oil from the aloe vera plant is also effective at treating a wide variety of skin conditions. For cysts, apply the oil directly to the area, just as you would with the tea tree oil. The area will feel cool, upon application. Note that some people drink aloe vera juice. It’s believed to remove impurities from the body and may help keep your skin healthy and free from cysts.
Castor oil is also effective at removing sebaceous cysts under the skin. It can also help reduce the itching associated with the condition, while healing the cyst at the same time. Soak a clean cotton cloth with the castor oil and place if over the affected area. Then place a hot water bag over the cloth that’s on top of the cyst. Leave this compress on the area for about 30 minutes. Heat helps improve the effectiveness of the castor oil and this method can be used virtually anywhere you have a cyst.
Another natural remedy for cysts is witch hazel. The bark and leaves are loaded with tannins that help clean the skin and tighten the pores. Apply witch hazel cream or gel directly to the cyst. Leave the topical on long enough for it to soak into the skin. You should see a reduction in the size of the cyst within a couple days.
One of the simplest natural ways to get rid of cysts is to use cabbage leaves. Simply pour 1/2 liter of water into a large pot and bring it to a boil. Add two large cabbage leaves to the boiling water and allow to boil for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, strain the cabbage leaves, then lay them over the cyst. Cover the leaves with a clean cloth and leave them on the area for at least 15 minutes. Then remove the leaves, wash the area and pat it dry. Repeat this process twice a day until the cyst goes away.
Epsom salt is another quick and effective remedy for cysts. Its anti-inflammatory properties can help relieve pain and inflammation, while simultaneously helping drain the cyst of dirt and pus. Boil 1/4 cup of water and add 2 teaspoons of Epsom salt. Stir the water until the salt is completely dissolved. Apply the solution to the cyst and allow to dry. Apply this solution 4 to 5 times each day, until the cyst disappears.
Hot or warm compresses are effective at treating several types of health conditions, including cysts. The process works because the heat helps draw the pus out from the cyst, without puncturing or irritating it. Clean the area with soap and water, then soak a washcloth in warm water and apply it to the cyst. When the cloth cools, dip it back in the water and reapply. Repeat this process 3 to 4 times each day to increase circulation to the area. When the cyst begins to drain, place a bandage over the area and change it daily, until the cyst disappears.
In most cases, cysts are nothing more than harmless lumps. However, some lumps are best examined by a qualified physician. If the mass is growing very rapidly, shows signs of infection, or is subject to constant irritation, you might consider having it permanently removed. Otherwise, the methods above should work well enough to remove them for cosmetic purposes.