How To Remove a Splinter

We've all had one - those annoying little pieces of wood or metal that gets stuck in our hands and feet. Oftentimes, they are quite painful too! Instead of just waiting for the sliver to make its way out of your hand, here are some tips to help you remove a splinter easily, quickly, and by yourself.

Step 1

Don't press on it. The worst thing you can do when you're trying to remove a splinter is to put pressure on it. More often than not, you'll just push the splinter further under your skin, making it more difficult to remove. Don't be the brave, naïve one who believes he can just ‘squeeze' it out with his bare hands either. This will likely just break the splinter into smaller pieces, causing you even more grief.

Step 2

Try baking soda. A great way to remove a splinter is the baking soda method. According to this method, you create a paste out of baking soda, using ¼ teaspoon of baking soda and enough water to make the paste. Then apply the paste to the area where the splinter is, and cover it entirely with a bandage. Leave it overnight, and in the morning, the splinter should be sticking out of the skin and you should be able to easily remove it. (This method works best when removing small or nearly invisible splinters.)

Step 3

Get some tape. If the splinter is a bit bigger and you just can't stand it anymore, you may have some success removing the splinter with some tape. Find the stickiest tape you have. It can be Scotch tape, masking tape, duct tape or whatever. Rip off a small piece of it and place it sticky-side down on top of the splinter. Again, be gentle so as not to apply too much pressure as you're doing this. Once the tape has fully adhered to the splinter site, tear it off quickly in the opposite direction that the splinter went in. If you're lucky, the splinter should come out attached to the tape, although it may take a few tries for this splinter removal method to work.

Step 4

Use tweezers. A common method of removing a splinter is to use a pair of tweezers. Take note of the angle at which the splinter went into your skin. Then grip the tweezers on any part of the splinter that you can and gently pull it backwards so that the splinter takes the same route out as it took in. A magnifying glass may be helpful if you're trying to remove a smaller splinter.

Step 5

A needle will work too. Those of us who are a bit older probably have not-so-fond memories of our mothers removing splinters with a pin or needle. Gruesome, painful and a little archaic, this method still works today. Simply take a sharp needle and try to open up the skin around the area where the splinter went in. Once you are able to uncover enough of the splinter, try removing it with a pair of tweezers or your fingers.


Share this article!

Follow us!

Find more helpful articles: