Obesity can lead to many problems, most of which have recently become manageable thanks to advances in technology and social acceptance. To tackle any issue that plus-size individuals face, we have to uncover the underlying problem
I have a good friend whose neck is a veritable skin tag forest. His excessive weight causes him a number of daily problems but, in the case of skin tags, he was happy to hear that it isn’t actually the fat that produces these growths.
So why do fat people get skin tags?
Fat people get skin tags because their skin folds cause excessive friction. In most cases, the primary cause of skin tags is skin-on-skin rubbing. Given that larger individuals have more skin, and it can often rub against itself, one can see why fat people are more likely to get skin tags.
In this article, you will discover the secondary causes of skin tags and what you can do to prevent them. More importantly, you’ll find products that can help you get rid of skin tags. We’ll also go over whether skin tags are unattractive. But first, let’s answer the main question in detail.
5 Reasons Obese People Get More Skin Tags
To understand why skin tags are common among fat people, you should learn about the individual factors and the meta-factor that cause skin tags. In this section, we will go over each of these and potential methods of countering them.
1. Skin Rubbing Against Skin
The meta-factor that results in a skin tag is epithelial friction, which is a fancy way of saying “skin rubbing against skin.” Your skin is your largest organ. It is made up of living cells and is constantly reproducing.
Dead skin is shed and washed away when you shower. When skin keeps rubbing against another portion of the skin, it creates a moment where the top layer produces extra cells without any cells dying or being shed. These reproduce into a growth known as the skin tag.
This factor can be prevented by lowering skin-on-skin friction. Whether you wear clothes that keep your thighs from rubbing against each other or adopt a posture that stops the bottom of your neck from rubbing against collar fat, each step you take to prevent skin friction is a step towards fewer skin tags.
2. Skin Folds
As mentioned above, the meta-cause of skin tags remains friction between skin. All other factors contribute to this friction.
Skin folds are the most significant contributor to skin tags because they ensure said friction. All movement surrounding the folds causes the skin to rub against itself, increasing the odds of getting skin tags.
This friction can be lowered by reducing movement, which only contributes to the problem by promoting weight gain.
To maintain a healthy plus size or lose weight, you need to move. And movement with skin folds increases the chances of getting skin tags.
3. Larger Surface Area
Because fat people have larger bodies, they have more skin. The larger the epithelial area, the more chances of random growth like warts and skin tags.
It does not help that significant portions of this large area are in direct contact with other areas of the body.
There is little you can do to prevent skin tags that come from having more skin. Even losing weight doesn’t immediately lead to taut skin.
4. Type-2 Diabetes
This is not as much of a cause as it seems to be a correlation. People with type-2 diabetes are statistically more likely to get skin tags. Obese individuals are also at a higher risk of type-2 diabetes.
Whether the body’s inability to process insulin has anything to do with skin tags is yet to be seen, but the correlation is not lost on the medical community. Eating less sugar and exercising can reduce the likelihood of getting skin tags.
Skin tags rarely occur in kids, so it is assumed that age is one of the contributing factors to this type of growth. While not reserved for people of advanced age, these skin tags are far more common in people over twenty.
Unfortunately, there is no way to reverse or pause age, so this factor cannot be countered.
Are Skin Tags Unattractive?
As the breakdown of the causal factors above shows, there is little one can do to prevent skin tags. So if you’re fated to have them, should you be conscious about them? Your friends might not give you an honest answer, but there is an objective consensus around skin tags.
Skin tags are generally considered unattractive if they grow too big or if there are multiple tags close to each other in a visible area. A small skin tag is barely noticeable and doesn’t draw much attention, but when skin tags are higher in size or quantity, they get noticed and judged.
For example, I have several skin tags in my armpits and, while they don’t necessarily gross me out, I don’t walk around with my arms raised, and, to date, no one has noticed them.
If your skin tags aren’t on one’s face to neck, they almost always go unnoticed. However, the person who has the skin tags might feel conscious. And that self-doubt is what reduces their overall attractiveness.
Can You Remove Skin Tags?
Having established that skin tags are hard to prevent among fat people and can make one feel conscious in an unattractive way, let’s look at whether they can be removed. After all, if they make you feel unattractive, you should do something about them.
You can remove skin tags by visiting your dermatologist and requesting them to freeze or burn off the skin tags. The process is somewhat painful and not worth it if the tags are small and in a less prominent area because skin tags don’t spread.
You can also use wart-removal applications from Walmart or most grocery stores to remove skin tags at home. It is best not to do this if you live alone (or are a minor) because having someone oversee your well-being through this is crucial.
Apart from freezing, you can also use specific acid solutions to remove the growth. A product like Instaderm Skin Tag Remover is a lower-risk application. Again, it is advisable to have a friend supervise the process if there is a medical emergency.
Will Skin Tags Go Away If I Lose Weight?
While weight loss can have tons of benefits, getting rid of existing skin tags is not one of them.
If your skin is no longer rubbing together then your skin tags may stop growing. It’s also possible that you won’t develop new asking tags.
However, the ones that are already there will need to be removed by a dermatologist or with at-home treatments.
Conclusion: Why do Bigger People Get Skin Tags?
You can prevent skin tags by doing anything that prevents skin-on-skin friction.
And if you already have non-prominent skin tags, don’t worry. They’re not contagious or unattractive.
The prominent ones can be removed easily with the help of a dermatologist or at home with a responsible friend overseeing the process.