Whether you’re playing with your kids or remodeling your home, paint is often involved. However, accidents happen as well and this leads to the question – How do you get paint out of your hair?
Especially if you have long and/or thick hair, getting paint on it can feel like a nightmare. And if you’ve got to hurry to go somewhere, time can be of the essence as well.
So, what should you do? The first solution most people think of is to use turpentine or mineral spirits, i.e. paint thinners. These can indeed work but are generally not recommended. The reason being that they are way too strong to apply to one’s hair and can strip down your hair dye (if you have any) together with the pain and then damage your hair too.
Plus, paint thinners tend to smell horribly so they’re not something you’d want to use anyway. All that being said, they do work but it might be easier to just cut off your hair…
If you want to avoid all that drama, however, there are a couple of other solutions that are much more sparing to the human hair while still working against paint. They do require some extra time in the shower, however, so you’d do well to call off your afternoon plans.
How to get oil based paint out of hair?
The best way to deal with oil based paints is to use olive oil. All you need to do is apply olive oil generously in the affected areas and carefully work out the paint with your fingers and/or with a fine-toothed comb.
For larger and solidly dried spills of paint, you can use even more olive oil and wrap your hair with plastic wrap for several hours. This will help the olive oil dissolve the paint and then you should be able to get it out more easily with a fine-toothed comb.
After that, just wash your hair with your preferred shampoo and repeat the process if there are still some minor spots with paint on them. This treatment takes a lot of time but oil based paints are tricky so you may have to free up your day. On the positive side, olive oil is a great conditioner so your hair may actually benefit from the whole endeavor.
How to get spray paint out of hair?
It’s surprising how often people apply spray paint on their hair by mistake when they’ve been meaning to use hair dye. It’s an especially common problem around holidays such as Halloween.
So, how do you deal with this without having to cut your or your child’s hair near-bald?
Depending on the type and quantity of the spray paint you may be able to deal with it through the regular methods – baby or olive oil to soften the clumps, followed by a long and tiresome session with the fine-toothed comb, then rinse, apply a double dose of shampoo, rinse again, and add conditioner. You can try leaving the shampoo on for a while (5-10 minutes tops) too.
If this isn’t enough, however, you can also try adding some baking soda to your shampoo (in your hand, no need to add it to the bottle) and leave the shampoo on your hair for a while. Baking soda is generally safe for human hair and many hair saloons use it as a clarifier to help get debris build-up out of people’s hair.
How to get acrylic paint out of hair?
Like other types of paint, acrylic paint can be very annoying to get out of your hair. It forms large and sturdy clumps when it dries and it can be tough to comb out. Fortunately, acrylic paint is water-based so most shampoos and oils work well against it.
Just take a warm shower and/or wet your hair thoroughly. Then apply your preferred shampoo liberally and start massaging it gently. Once the hair and paint have started softening up, take your fine-toothed comb and start working on the paint one clump at a time. After you’ve got it all out, rinse your hair and apply some conditioner to give it some reprieve from the whole adventure.
If you want, you can use olive or baby oil too for tougher and bigger clumps of paint. After you’re done, you’d still want to shampoo and conditioner your hair, however.
How to get latex paint out of hair?
Latex paint can be extra tough to get rid of so just shampoo and olive oil may not be enough. Instead, you can use tougher lubricants such as WD-40. As with olive oil, apply it on the clumps after rinsing your hair with warm water. After that, start rubbing the paint clumps to soften them up before switching to the comb.
Latex can take even more time to take off than acrylic and oil-based paints so you should be patient and calm to get it off without damaging your hair. It’s often just necessary to take a break from the struggle, wash your whole hair with shampoo to get some of the loosened debris off, and then move back to the WD-40 and the comb. Switching up olive oil and WD-40 can also be helpful but either way – be prepared for a long stay in the bathroom.
These are the best ways for carefully getting paint out of your hair without damaging it. It can be time consuming and exhausting but it’s usually worth it if you have long hair and want to preserve it. Or, if the paint is only on one small part of your hair and not all-over, maybe cutting the affected section off isn’t such a bad idea? One-sided trims are in fashion for both men and women nowadays.