Types of Warts and Verruccas

The two types of warts that dermatologists see most often are the common wart and the verruca. Common warts usually grow on fingers, the backs of hands, arms and legs. Verrucas are only found on the soles of the feet or bottom of toes.

Common Wart

Common warts are painless, benign growths that consist of a hard core of skin. A common wart looks like a firm raised lump with a rough surface, often segmented, they have a cauliflower-like appearance. Warts can be round or irregular in shape, flat or raised, and can grow as large as a pea. They can be various shades of white, grey or brown. Common warts typically grow around fingernails, on the fingers and on the backs of hands, but they can also be found on the knees and elbows, most often where the skin has been previously broken.


Verrucas are only found on the bottom of the foot, such as the heels or balls of the feet, they're very tender and can be identified by the way they interrupt the normal pattern of the skin. They can look rough, bumpy, spongy, thick and/or scaly. Verrucas can be brown or grey (with a dark centre), they are unsightly and are often painful if not treated. They're usually larger than common warts and are flatter because of the pressure on the bottom of the foot from walking. They often develop beneath pressure points such as the heels or balls of your feet. If you look closely, you may see small black spots in the Verruca. These are not, as some people believe, roots in the warts. The black spots are caused by bleeding in the verruca as a result of standing and walking on it.