Cons: Strong smell, makes skin peel
Some time ago I was dealing with an annoying and somewhat painful plantar wart. I finally came to the conclusion that ignoring it wasn't going to cut it anymore, and that I needed to to something, because it would hurt when I was running. It was right on the arch of my foot. Had it been on the ball of my foot I probably couldn't have ignored it as long as I did. Anyway, I looked through my choices in the drugstore, and decided on good old Compound W Fast-Acting Liquid, primarily because it claimed to work for plantar warts, which I understood could be difficult to remove...and also because it claimed to be fast acting!
~ Product Description
The packaging claims:
- Painlessly removes common & plantar warts
- Convenient brush applicator
- Safe and effective.
It comes in a .31 fl. oz. glass bottle with a screw-off cap that has a brush attached. I believe I paid about $8 for this.
The directions for use say to wash affected area (may soak wart in warm water for 5 minutes), dry area thoroughly. Using the applicator, apply a sufficient amount to cover each wart. Let dry. Repeat this procedure once or twice daily as needed until wart is removed, for up to 12 weeks.
Do not use on irritated skin, on any area that is infected or reddened, on moles, on birthmarks, on warts with hair growing from them, on genital warts, on warts on the face, on warts on mucous membranes such as inside the mouth, nose, etc. Ask a doctor before use if you have diabetes or poor blood circulation.
Warnings are: Avoid contact with eyes. For external use only. Avoid inhaling vapors. Extremely flammable. Cap bottle tightly and store at room temperature away from heat.
The active ingredient is 17% salicylic acid. The inactive ingredients are alcohol 21.2%, camphor, castor oil, collodion, ether 63.6%, ethylcellulose, hypophosphorous acid, menthol, polysorbate 80.
~ My Experience
I'd had this plantar wart for probably 9 months to a year. And as I was examining my foot further, I discovered another small common wart on the side of one toe. Okay, so Compoud W to the rescue - hopefully!
I decided to apply after my shower, because my foot was soaked and warm from the water. I dried it, and then unscrewed the bottle cap on the Compound W bottle. Yikes! Majorly stinky stuff! Strong, chemical scent that almost made my eyes water. Oh well, small price to pay if it worked. I applied some to the plantar wart, fairly liberally, and the small wart on my toe. This product is very thin and watery, and I could barely tell how much I was actually applying. I think I overdid it the first time. It dries pretty quickly - about 30 seconds probably. After it's dry you can't smell it anymore, thankfully. I put on my socks and shoes and forgot about it. I applied again in the evening before bed.
I kept up this regimen for about, oh, maybe a week or 10 days. After several days I noticed there was a black spot in the middle of the plantar wart. The Compound W had dried all around it into a white shell almost. Everytime I applied, it just built up this shell. Weird. I wasn't expecting that. I thought maybe I wasn't applying it right or something. But the black spot on the wart made me think it was being killed or whatever. After about 10 days I stopped applying because it just didn't seem right to keep building up this white shell from the product. The small wart on my toe fell off! Yay! It was gone. The plantar wart was still there. I just left it like that, with all this white dried stuff stuck all around it for probably another week or two without applying anymore. I didn't know what to do.
Finally I noticed the edges around where the Compound W was had begun to start lifting somewhat off my skin. Mind you, I had applied this way onto my good skin, over the edges of the actual wart. Don't do this! Just apply right on the wart and not on your good skin. I start picking at the edges, trying to lift it off, because it seemed the core of the wart was loosened and might come out. But I was afraid I'd rip my good skin, so I just day after day worked it until finally the whole thing came off, and the plantar wart too! It was actually gone, and off my foot finally after all this time! My skin looked all peeled off, red, and somewhat raw - around where the wart was. But it all healed up and the wart has not come back.
~ Final Thoughts
Compound W Fast-Acting Liquid really does work. It works much quicker on small, common warts, that it does on a plantar wart. But it did remove my plantar wart. Big tip: Be sure and apply the liquid ONLY to the wart, and as little as possible on the surrounding skin. And this stuff stinks to high heaven!