Many folks and even some health professionals endorse mayonnaise for head lice treatment. Lot of parents prefer mayo to store-bought lice treatments as they (rightly) don’t want to put toxic pesticides on their children’s heads … and also as hair treated with mayonnaise will be soft and shiny when the treatment is all over. It has been an acceptable natural remedy for many decades – and it wouldn’t have stood the test of time if there weren’t something to it.

Mayonnaise And Lice

How To Kill Head Lice With Mayonnaise – Instructions For Proper Use

Daniel Packer, penning for frugal living blog Wise Bread, shared his discovery:

“A few years ago, I unfortunately got lice. I tried all the products that the local drug stores had to offer and found that nothing worked. Afraid of killing more brain cells than lice, I refrained from using any more toxic chemicals on my hair and resorted to mayonnaise. It is a safe way to kill lice, and it works! Massage mayonnaise into your hair and cover it with a shower cap before you go to sleep. Wash it out in the morning and use a fine comb to comb out any dead eggs. If needed, repeat 7-10 days later.”

Can Mayonnaise Kill Lice?

I know first question coming to your mind is: Does mayonnaise kill lice? The concept is that mayonnaise suffocates the live lice. It has viscosity properties and thus can suffocate live head lice as well as nymphs. It doesn’t, however, kill any live lice eggs as they remain well protected in their nits. Therefore, you should comb out all the nits using a good lice comb after assaulting the live lice with the mayonnaise. Otherwise the nits will hatch in a few days, and you’ll be back to the square one where you started. Alternatively, You can use vinegar or lemon juice to treat head lice eggs.

Some recommend that it’s possible to get around combing altogether by treating with mayonnaise every four days for two weeks. Consequently, the mayonnaise will kill all the live lice on a person’s head at the time of each application. You would really be holding your fire for each batch of eggs to hatch out of their nits, and then attacking them with mayonnaise. However, there’s a catch with this theory, though. Read on:

Some studies have stated that mayonnaise and other suffocating agents don’t actually kill the lice. The lice though are seen dead but actually they just go into a dormant state due to lack of oxygen. Some or all of them may recover eventually. Even if these studies are right, the mayonnaise remedy will make the live lice much easier to comb out. In reality it will paralyze them for a few hours. But to get rid of them permanently, the combing-out process is still necessary.

Natural Beauty Tips:

(i) Do not use low fat mayonnaise because it doesn’t have sufficient viscosity (oil) in it to kill live head lice. Ensure to use full fat commercial mayonnaise, or even preferably, homemade full fat mayonnaise.

(ii) The vinegar content in mayonnaise is not of enough concentration so as to kill head lice eggs. Therefore, if you are applying mayonnaise lice treatment, count on only to clear out adult lice and nymphs. To kill the little monster eggs, you have to apply a vinegar lice treatment.

How To Get Rid Of Lice With Mayonnaise?

Follow these mayonnaise lice treatment instructions:

(i) Apply the mayonnaise from scalp to hair ends, coating very well in thick layer, paying special attention to the entire scalp, roots of the hair, neck area and behind the ears. This is the area where adult lice prefer to hang out and where they lay their eggs. Obviously, this will take a lot of mayonnaise, depending on how long and thick your hair is.

(ii) For adults, you can cover with a tight-fitting shower or swimming cap. You may avoid this with children, if they feel uncomfortable.

(iii) You will need to leave the mayonnaise on for 8-10 hours, without the lice being able to get a fresh breath or run away. This is what the pediatricians recommend. Some people say 2 hours are enough. But Dr. Greene, a noted pediatrician, recommends at least 8 hours. ( Why so long? Many bugs are capable of holding their breath much longer than humans and you will like to ensure they really die. As you need to leave the mayonnaise in for a long time, you may apply it right before bed and leave it in overnight.

Note: It should not be used overnight on a very young child, or on any older child, because they might clutch some strands of hair out of the cap and chew or suck on them or eat mayonnaise. It will not be safe, as the mayonnaise turns rancid after a few hours being out of the fridge.

(iv) Rinse off the mayonnaise from your hair, and wash it with shampoo to clear out the oil and grease. After having taking out the mayo, you can rinse with white vinegar to make the nit-combing easier. (Some researchers have endorsed that vinegar in fact loosens nit glue.)

Do You Need To Repeat Head Lice Mayonnaise Treatment?

Once you kill all the active lice in the head, the battle is partly over and partly may still remain. You will still be required to attentively comb through hair for 2 weeks, to get rid of all the head lice nits, which can otherwise hatch and leads to infestation again.

Natural Beauty Tips:

(i) After having finished with the above steps, make sure to wash all linens and clothes in hot water and vacuum carefully all through your home to remove any head lice loitering on such items.

(ii) If you follow the above instructions cautiously, all being well you will not have to reapply mayonnaise to do head lice mayonnaise treatment again. But unfortunately if you see any new live lice, do the above process again without losing any time. Because in case of any delay, the live lice can breed, lay more eggs, and aggravate problem for you.

What head lice treatment you use? Please share your experience under comments.

Useful Related Post:

How To Get Rid Of Head Lice


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