You may well have a tub or pot of Vaseline beside your bed. Vaseline has its uses – it’s great for adding moisture to skin or hair, but getting it stuck in the latter can be a nightmare.
Thankfully, there are many ways to get Vaseline out of hair. From using baby powder or corn starch to vinegar, you can remove the Vaseline from your strands, returning them to their usual healthy selves.
This article will outline exactly how best to get Vaseline out of hair, providing detailed methods to do so using tried-and-tested techniques.
What Is Vaseline?
Vaseline is petroleum jelly and is a mixture of mineral oils and natural waxes.
Originally used to protect cuts and burns, Vaseline is now used on both skin and hair.
It’s popular in the natural hair community and also goes by the name ‘hair grease’ because – you guessed it – it’s pretty greasy and sticky in texture.
Vaseline has many uses for skin care, but is also used for hair care, as its moisturizing properties lock in hydration and can seal dry, frazzled split ends.
As the substance is fairly thick, you don’t need much of it – a pea-sized amount will do.
If you do use excess, you may end up with clumpy, sticky hair that’s overly oily in appearance and hand feel.
But don’t worry! If you’ve been too liberal with Vaseline, there are ways of getting it out of your hair.
Why Is It So Difficult To Remove Vaseline From Hair?
Long story short – it’s difficult to remove Vaseline from your hair because the substance isn’t water-soluble.
If you get some on your skin and then run it under the tap, you’ll notice the water droplets just slide right over it.
That’s why it can be such a challenge to get Vaseline out of your hair and is also why using water alone won’t work.
Can Vaseline Damage Hair?
As with many things, there’s debate over whether Vaseline causes more harm than good.
If you’re prone to acne or breakouts, you wouldn’t want to be applying it to the skin or either your scalp or face, as the greasiness will block pores and might lead to excess sebum.
There are also people who suggest that using Vaseline might encourage bacteria to grow or block hair follicles from developing properly. But it’s important to note that there’s no research to validate these claims.
Vaseline won’t damage your hair – it’s not actively harmful.
If used in excess, however, it will make your locks overly greasy, and they’ll appear limp and lank.
For this reason, it’s best to use Vaseline in moderation. If you’re already prone to oiliness, it’s probably a good idea to look for other moisturizing haircare ingredients like jojoba or coconut oils.
Also Read: How To Get Pomade Out Of Hair (6 Easy Ways)
How To Get Vaseline Out Of Hair
Before we get into detail on how to get Vaseline out of hair, consider how much time you have, as well as the hair that you’re working with.
What are its texture, length, and color? How much Vaseline was added? How much time do you have to dedicate to its removal?
These are all basic questions, but they are variables that may impact which method you want to use to get Vaseline out of your hair.
If you need to run to an event and want a quick-fix, for example, then you want to choose a method that doesn’t involve hair washing.
Ways To Remove Vaseline From Hair:
– Corn starch or cornmeal powder
– Baking soda
– Baby oil
– Laundry detergent (liquid) or ordinary dish soap
– Peanut butter
Whether or not these substances work on your hair will depend on its texture and length, as well as how much Vaseline is in the hair.
Thankfully, we’ve put together enough methods for how to get Vaseline out of hair that you should be able to find one that works for you.
Before you start, it’s a good idea to follow these steps:
1. Grab a paper towel and try to blot as much Vaseline as possible out of your hair.
2. Don’t wet your hair at this point! Just try and blot the Vaseline out of your strands, trying not to rub it further in.
You’re now good to go with trying any of the following methods for getting Vaseline out of hair.
Method 1: Corn starch, baking soda, or cornmeal powder
You’ll likely find the above ingredients in your kitchen pantry, which is why we’ve listed them as our first method. They’re super absorbent – and baking soda is a great deodorizer.
After you’ve blotted your hair as described above, you want to sprinkle whichever substance you’re using into your hair.
- Use a paper towel or your fingers to gently pat the powder into the areas where there’s Vaseline. You want the greasy strands to be completely coated in the powder.
- Let the corn starch or baking soda sit in your hair for around ten minutes, which will encourage the oil to absorb the Vaseline.
- Use a paper towel to blot of pat the rest of the Vaseline and powder mix out of your hair – if your hair still feels greasy, repeat the above steps.
- Once you’re satisfied that the grease is gone, wash your hair using either your normal shampoo or a clarifying one, and follow up with conditioner.
- Repeat as you need – and be sure to use warm water, as cold water will encourage any Vaseline remnants to congeal.
You can also use either talc or baby powder to remove Vaseline from your hair in this way, but if you accidentally inhale either, you may experience problems breathing.
Baking soda, corn starch, or cornmeal powder are far safer options.
Method 2: Dish soap
Your standard dish soap has been formulated with tough cleaning agents designed to break down grease on your dishes, which is why it also works to get Vaseline out of your hair.
Use as you would a regular shampoo, massaging the soap into your strands where the Vaseline is.
If the skin on your hands or scalp is sensitive, be sparing with the dish soap, and remember to always follow up with a good conditioner or mask in order to restore moisture to your hair.
Method 3: Baby oil (and other oils)
Using grease to get out grease? Well, actually, yes, this works, because the oil will break down the hydrocarbon chains in the Vaseline, making it easier to get out of your hair.
If you have baby oil to hand, this will work well.
Alternatively, you can use oils like olive oil, coconut oil, jojoba oil – whatever is in your store or bathroom cupboard.
Just don’t forget to warm the coconut oil before use if this is what you intend to use.
- Rub around two tablespoons of your choice of oil into your hair, really working it into the Vaseline-affected strands.
- Leave it to sit for around ten to fifteen minutes.
- Grab your paper towels and blot or pat the Vaseline and oil mixture out of your hair, using a downward motion if you’re wiping.
Your hair will still feel greasy, so you’ll need to wash it in warm water, repeating the wash as often as necessary.
Method 4: Peanut butter
Yes, we know, using peanut butter on your hair sounds a bit gross, but it really works to get Vaseline out of your hair.
Incidentally, if you get gum in your hair, peanut butter also works to remove that, too.
- Grab your peanut butter (smooth is best) and massage it into the area where there’s Vaseline.
- Leave it on for around ten minutes until the peanut butter appears to solidify and set.
- You’ll then need a hairbrush in order to remove the peanut butter from your hair. A wide-toothed comb will also work.
- Remember to wash your brushes after you’ve done this!
Above, we described how you should always use warm water to wash your hair after removing Vaseline from it.
This is because Vaseline will congeal in cold water.
However, if you’re using peanut butter to get Vaseline out of hair, you want to rinse it in cold water.
You should then follow up by washing your hair in warm water and use a conditioner.
Method 5: Vinegar
Any old vinegar will work for this, but apple cider vinegar is best if you have some.
Vinegar is highly acidic, which helps to remove even the greasiest substances. If you have a spray bottle, it’s a great idea to use this to apply the vinegar to your hair.
- Mix half a cup of vinegar with warm water. You can also mix it with clarifying shampoo if you have that.
- If you’ve got a spray bottle, spritz the affected strands until they’re saturated. Alternatively, just rinse your hair with the mix.
- Wipe your hair in a downwards direction with a paper towel. You may need to repeat the rinsing/saturating step a couple of times until you’re satisfied the Vaseline is gone from your hair.
- Follow up with shampoo and conditioner.
Vinegar is very acidic, so it’s best not to over-use it, as this will dry your hair up and lead to different – but still annoying – issues.
Method 6: Egg
Yep, eggs really will work to get Vaseline out of your hair. It’s probably one of the messier substances you can use, but it will cut right through the grease of the product.
- Grab a couple of eggs and whisk them together.
- Wash your hair with the mix, and you can always add in a bit of vinegar if you’d like.
- Leave it in your hair for around twenty minutes before washing out.
You’ll likely need to wash your hair a few times with shampoo after having used the egg or egg-and-vinegar mix, and follow up with a conditioner.
Method 7: Clarifying shampoo or glycerin soap
Glycerin soap is made from natural oils and fats, which makes it ideal for getting Vaseline out of hair.
You can usually purchase it from a drugstore, where it will come in a bar.
- Follow the steps above of blotting the Vaseline in your hair with a paper towel.
- Grab your glycerin soap and, using a downwards motion, rub it into your affected hair with warm water.
- Lather up and massage the Vaseline out of your strands.
You can also use a clarifying shampoo in the same way. Remember that these can contain strong ingredients, so you don’t want to use them too often or in significant quantities.
Keep washing your hair with either soap or shampoo until the water runs clear, rather than cloudy.
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