Droplet of rubbing alcohol.

Does Rubbing Alcohol Kill Lice?

When it comes to treating head lice, many folks want to avoid treatments that contain harsh chemicals and pesticides, especially parents treating their children. Sometimes concerned parents look to home remedies like rubbing alcohol to clear head lice as a way to avoid harsh chemicals. However, does rubbing alcohol kill lice?

Doesn’t Kill Lice or Eggs

There have been a few studies to see how effectively isopropyl alcohol kills head lice. Participants saturated their hair with rubbing alcohol for eight hours (eight hours!). Afterward, they reexamined the participants and found that the adult lice and eggs were still alive and well. Thus, researchers proved without a doubt that rubbing alcohol does not kill lice.

Aside from the fact that rubbing alcohol is not effective against lice or eggs, it’s outright dangerous to try to use it for this purpose. Consider these risks:

Dehydration of the Scalp

Isopropyl alcohol is extremely harmful to your scalp, skin, and hair. It strips your hair of its natural oils and dehydrates your scalp. If you tried to use alcohol to kill lice, your scalp might react. It may develop bumps that could become infected. You could also have an allergic reaction and experience stinging, itching, inflammation, and even hives.

Chemical Burns

Another reason not to try to use alcohol to kill lice is that it puts you at risk of getting chemical burns on your skin. And, if you have any open cuts, scratches, or sensitive spots on your scalp, the alcohol will burn your skin. In addition, it can damage your hair follicles. It will also burn if it gets into your eyes. If you are treating a child, there’s a risk of getting alcohol into their eyes. After all, children have a harder time sitting still than adults.

Alcohol Is Flammable

Any form of alcohol is flammable. Why run the risk of putting a flammable agent in your hair? That only invites more opportunity for injury. Again, children are often in need of head lice treatments, and parents should be reluctant to use any flammable material on their child’s body.

Chemical-Free Lice Treatment

Since rubbing alcohol does not kill lice, trying to use it on your child will just be exposing them to unnecessary discomfort (and danger), and in the end you’ll still have to find another treatment. That’s why when it comes to treating head lice effectively, it’s best to trust the professionals. At Fresh Heads Head Lice Removal, we have the latest tools and technologies to kill both head lice and the eggs living in the nits. We don’t use any harsh chemicals or pesticides that could be harmful to you or your child’s skin. Even better, our gentle but effective treatment lasts just over an hour. Contact us today!


Schools Without Lice.

Schools Without Lice

At Fresh Heads Lice Removal, our goal is to get rid of lice in schools across the country. We’ve partnered with the Lice Clinics of America, creating a program called Schools Without Lice, to give teachers and nurses free screenings, resources, and treatments. Together, we can have schools without lice!

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