How to Use Vinegar for Head Lice

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. Updated: January 16, 2017
How to Use Vinegar for Head Lice

Head Lice? The proliferation of head lice occurs, above all, in school environments where children play together, share combs or swimming caps. These can quickly become a pest, but can be easily controlled thanks to vinegar. You must have heard of treating nits with vinegar before, but why is vinegar so good in treating this condition? This product has superior properties to combat existing lice, but also to remove nits thanks to its acetic acid content. OneHowTo explains how to use vinegar for lice, as well as its properties and preventive methods that will help keep them far from your head.

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Steps to follow:


Vinegar is one of the most used natural remedies for lice, but why? This product has a number of properties that help us stop this infestation and to prevent the presence of nits in our children's heads. Here we list the properties of vinegar for lice that will help you understand why it has always been used:

  • Disinfectant capacity: It is one of the most important properties of vinegar and, in fact, vinegar has always been used to disinfect home and for different cleaning treatments. It is a natural antiseptic that prevents the proliferation of bacteria, so it will work seamlessly to combat lice and eliminate nits.
  • It gets rid of nits from the hair: As a result of acetic acid, a component in vinegar, the substance that allows nits stay stuck in the hair root is soften, facilitating its removal with a tooth comb.
  • Lice repellent: Acetic acid also works in another way. Its smell acts as a repellent for the insects, sending them fleeing off to find a better place to live.
How to Use Vinegar for Head Lice - Step 1

Now that you know the properties of vinegar to kill lice, we'll explain how you can use it and, thus, reap its benefits. The treatment is very simple because all you need are the following ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of vinegar
  • 1/2 cup hot water

Mix both ingredients in a bottle that, preferably, has a diffuser to be able to spray it and apply it to all areas of the head from the hair root to the tip, leaving the hair soaked with this product. When you notice that your hair is well covered, cover your hair with a shower hat or, if you don't have any, wrap it with a towel to kill lice and remove nits.

How to Use Vinegar for Head Lice - Step 2

Leave your hair wrapped in the towel or shower hat for 2 hours, after which you should let it down and comb it with a tooth comb to remove nits. Thanks to acetic acid, they will detach from the roots and will be far easier to eliminate.

You'll notice that the hair is nit free because nits are very noticeable, given their whitish colour and the fact that they tend to spread over the scalp area.

How to Use Vinegar for Head Lice - Step 3

When you make sure that the hair is free of lice, it's time to wash it with your regular shampoo - not a lice shampoo. You shouldn't use a shampoo specific for lice because the vinegar has already combatted the pests and, if you use a lice shampoo on top of this, you could cause irritation on the scalp.

This treatment is recommended 3 times a week to make sure that you have completely freed yourself of this problem, once and for all. Washing the comb with boiling water after use is also recommended. If any lice are left on the comb, this will get every last one as they die in temperatures exceeding 41 ° C.


Once you have combatted the pests, it is highly recommended to implement some tips and tricks to avoid becoming infected again with these very annoying insects. Below are some tips for preventing lice effectively. Take note!

  • Do not share combs or swimming caps. Schoolchildren in particular need to be particularly careful with their personal hygiene to prevent lice from spreading amongst them.
  • Ponytails: Girls should tie their hair up (ponytails, braids, etc.) as well because it is more difficult for the lice to nest in hair as they cannot attach to it properly. If your daughter has long hair, make sure she ties it up to school to reduce the risk of catching nits.
  • Up the housecleaning: If someone in your family has lice you must increase cleanliness to prevent all members becoming infected. We therefore recommend vacuuming, not only the rooms, but also the sofas and upholstery that might have come into contact with lice. With teddy bears, we recommend sealing them in a plastic bag for 24 hours to kill the insect.
  • High temperature in the washing machine: We have said that temperatures above 41° C are not endured by lice so use high temperatures when cleaning your clothes in the washing machine.

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Use Vinegar for Head Lice, we recommend you visit our Family health category.

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How to Use Vinegar for Head Lice