How to Get Vaseline Out of Hair

If you’re one of those people treat your hair using Vaseline or petroleum jelly, then you might also be wondering how to get it out of hair.

It’s hard to remove Vaseline using regular shampoo. Luckily, I know three easy ways to help you get rid of petroleum jelly in your hair.

I also tried slathering my hair with Vaseline before. In the end, I struggled to clean my Vaseline-greased hair. Luckily, I learned a few helpful hacks as I tried to solve my problem.

Because I don’t want you to struggle the way I did, I compiled ways on how to get Vaseline out of hair that will leave your hair clean and undamaged.


Vaseline for hair: Can you use petroleum jelly on your hair?

Vaseline is the most well-known brand of petroleum jelly. Since its discovery in 1859, petroleum jelly has been an indispensable product in the medical and beauty industry.

From healing minor burns, moisturizing dry skin, and preventing diaper rash, Vaseline made its way into being a haircare staple. 

Uses of Vaseline for Hair

Since it is versatile and more organic than most chemically-made haircare products in the market, people apply petroleum jelly to the hair for various reasons.

1. As a hair gel

Some people use Vaseline to style their hair in the same way that they use a gel. Its thick consistency can help keep in place even the most stubborn hair. Also, it adds shine to otherwise dull hair. 

2. For dry scalp and dandruff

Others dab Vaseline on their scalp to relieve the itch caused by dry scalp or dandruff. But remember, only use a small amount of petroleum jelly when applying to the scalp for easier removal. 

3. Moisturize Hair and repair split ends

Others slather Vaseline from their hair strands down to the tips because they believe it can moisturize the hair and repair split ends. To some extent, these claims are valid, but we should clarify some things.

First, Vaseline is proven to be an occlusive moisturizer, which means it can’t moisturize on its own. But it can help seal moisturization when applied on top of other hair care products. 

This means that Vaseline doesn’t moisturize hair, but it sure helps in the moisturization process.

Second, Vaseline can’t repair split ends, but it can help prevent split ends. When applied on split ends, it helps lessen the visibility of split ends but does not repair them.

Although there is no existing scientific evidence to back this claim, several people online claim that applying Vaseline on hair can help speed up hair growth

Vaseline may help protect your hair from breakage, but it does not make the hair grow at a faster rate.

Regardless of how you use Vaseline in your hair, improper usage may lead to serious risks of hair follicle infection. 

For example, if it stays in the scalp for too long or if it is not rinsed properly, it may clog the pores in your scalp, which will result in hair loss or infection of hair follicles.

To reduce these risks, it is essential to know how to remove Vaseline from hair and scalp thoroughly.  


What breaks down Vaseline?

Before removing Vaseline from your hair, it is important to know what breaks down Vaseline in the first place. 

Vaseline is a known brand of petroleum jelly, which consists of natural waxes and mineral oils.

Since these ingredients are not water-soluble, we need petroleum solvents such as acetone and isopropyl alcohol to dissolve petroleum jelly on most surfaces. But for the skin and scalp, oils with lower molecular weight such as argan oil and coconut oil work best.


Ways to Remove Vaseline from Hair

Blot and Wash Method

Simply washing your hair using your regular shampoo won’t help much in getting rid of Vaseline.

Instead, the most basic and helpful technique is using common kitchen ingredients such as cornstarch and baking soda to aid you in removing greasy petroleum jelly from your hair.

What you’ll need:

  • cornstarch or baking soda
  • absorbent paper towels
  • clarifying shampoo

Procedure:

  1. Blot your hair with absorbent paper towels. Take a small portion of your hair and gently dab a piece of paper towel on it. Do not rub the towel on your hair as it will further spread the Vaseline.
  2. Dust your hair with cornstarch or baking soda. Then, lightly coat your greasy hair with either one of these powders.
  3. Wash your hair with clarifying shampoo. Clarifying shampoos aim to rid your hair of styling products. Of course, you may also use your regular shampoo, but it won’t produce the same results.
  4. Rinse with warm water. Warm water helps melt Vaseline, while cold water may cause it to solidify.

Natural Oils Method

If you want a healthier and more moisturizing way of removing Vaseline from your hair, you may use affordable natural oils. Certain oils like olive oil and baby oil can break down the hydrocarbon oil chains of the petroleum jelly. 

Compared to other methods in this article, this method is much safer for children.

What you’ll need:

  • olive oil, jojoba oil, coconut oil, almond oil, or baby oil

Procedure:

  1. Massage your hair with oil. You may use olive oil, coconut oil, jojoba oil, almond oil, or baby oil. Leave for at least 10 minutes before shampooing.
  2. Shampoo. You may use your regular shampoo or a clarifying shampoo. Do it twice if your hair is still oily.
  3. Rinse with warm water. 

Tip: If you use this method and find your hair very oily even after shampooing, you can use baby powder which helps absorb the oil.


Dishwashing Liquid Method

If all else fails, you might need a tougher solution to get rid of Vaseline in your hair.  

Dishwashing liquid clean tough greases on cookware. No wonder why it works great for removing petroleum jelly grease as well. However, this method may be too tough on those with sensitive scalp or thin hair, as it strips your hair's natural oils.

What you’ll need:

  • degreasing dishwashing liquid soap
  • conditioner

Procedure:

  1.  Apply few drops of dishwashing liquid on damp hair. Rub into hair until it produces bubbles.
  2. Rinse with warm water. Warm water helps melt the grease from Vaseline.
  3. Apply conditioner. Dishwashing liquids are tough on the hair as they can remove your hair’s natural oils. To counter this effect, use a moisturizing conditioner after rinsing the dishwashing liquid.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if you put Vaseline in your hair?

Contrary to popular belief, Vaseline neither moisturizes the hair nor helps in hair growth. Instead, if you put it in your hair, it creates a protective layer that locks in moisture.

One good way of using Vaseline on hair is applying a natural hair moisturizer first before coating the hair with it to lock in the moisture.

Does baby oil remove Vaseline from hair?

Yes, baby oil removes Vaseline from hair.

Although it may sound counterintuitive to use oil against grease, it works. I won’t dive into the science of it all, but the point is some oils such as baby oils, and olive oils can break down Vaseline’s hydrocarbon chains.

How do you get Vaseline out of a child’s hair?

Out of all the methods stated in this article, the safest way to get Vaseline out of a child’s hair is the natural oils method in which you rub natural oils or baby oil on a child’s Vaseline-greased hair before shampooing.

Does Vaseline repair split ends?

Vaseline does not repair split ends, but it can reduce the obviousness of your split ends when applied to your hair tips.

Is Vaseline good for frizzy hair?

Vaseline can be used as a styling gel that may temporarily reduce frizz, but it may be too dense for thin and fragile hair. 

Since it is not inherently moisturizing, applying Vaseline alone will not help reduce frizz. But it helps lock in the moisture of other moisturizing hair care products when used as an outer coating. 

How long should you leave Vaseline in your hair?

You may use Vaseline as a styling gel to keep your hair in place. You may also use it as a hair mask and leave it overnight. The possibilities are endless. 

Just make sure to regularly clean your scalp whenever you use Vaseline in your hair, as it may lead to clogged pores on your scalp.


Wrapping It Up

 Success!

There goes three quick and easy ways of getting Vaseline out of your hair.

It certainly is as quick and easy as it looks, right? How was your experience?

Feel free to comment your thoughts on the comments section. We’d love to hear from you!

If this article helped you, share this with your friends who struggle with removing Vaseline from their hair.

After all, sharing is caring, right?

Last Updated: May 18, 2021

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