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Listerine for Lice

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We have heard from several readers that Listerine can be helpful in preventing lice infestations. We recently received this testimonial from a reader:

"The best way to prevent head lice is old-fashioned Listerine Antiseptic Mouthrinse. We were in the Army 33 years and moved a lot, but my kids never got lice.

"Teachers asked me why my children didn't get lice when all the others did. I used to put Listerine on their hair and scalp a week before school started and also put a tablespoon of Listerine in the rinse water when I washed the clothes and sheets. You have to be careful to keep the mouthwash out of eyes."

Another reader writes:

"My quick remedy to prevent this problem is Listerine. I have tried it and am convinced that it works. Put Listerine mouthwash in a spray bottle and spray it all over a child's head. It will smell strong until it dries and then there is no smell. Do not rinse the hair. My child even slept in the same bed with another youngster who was later discovered to have lice. My child was unaffected. I spray their hair every Sunday night before the school week starts on Monday. I think you will find that it helps."

Listerine Antiseptic Mouthwash contains essential oils including thymol, eucalyptol, menthol and methyl salicylate. It also has 26.9 percent alcohol, which may kill lice. An expert in lice treatment confided to us that alcohol does seem to be toxic to lice, so that may partially explain your success. Breathing in the mist may not be safe, so anyone who tries this technique should be extra cautious to protect a child's face from the aerosol spray.

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  • Currently 3.9/5
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Both of my boys were sent home from school earlier this week with head lice. The checklist given to me by the school nurse said that in order for them to return to school, I must treat their scalps with an insecticide.

I used a head lice treatment containing permethrin and it was completely ineffective, both children were refused readmission to school and I was instructed to reapply the insecticide that day in direct opposition to the package instructions which state that treatments should be spaced at least 7 days apart.

I took them home and washed their hair, towel-dried it, then saturated it with Listerine and covered their heads with shower caps. I left the shower caps on for 2 hours, then we removed them and I combed with a lice comb.

The next day they washed their hair, toweled it dry and I sprayed their hair with Listerine and combed.

The lice are gone, and the infestation was severe, prior to the Listerine I combed hundreds of lice from their hair.

MUCH more effective than the insecticide for us.

Be sure and use Original Listerine and not one of the flavored varieties. The flavored varieties contain sugar which makes a sticky mess after the treatment!

I have lice. I have tried everything I could think of to get rid of them! Non-Toxic, insecticides, and permethrin treatments do not work! I recently tried listerin and voila! They are mostly gone! I do, however, still need to comb through it more to fully get rid of the nits, but ALL bugs are dead!

After getting headlice on several occasions from some neighbor children and spending alot of money to remove it I was advised to wash my hair with "Newkirks Castille Oil Soap" it worked perfectly for me and the children who had it.
Saturating the hair with mayonaise or other similar sandwich spread putting on a cap or grocerystore plastic bag and sleeping in t also works. To get the oiliness out wash hair in dishsoap

my daughter continued to get headlice over and over. i would spend 100.00's of dollars just to try and get rid of them, but nothing seem to work. i saw your article in the paper and thouht i am going to try this. what can i lose, $5.00? look at what i had been spending! so i did and it was great they are all gone and she is very happy.

thank u she says

Another lice treatment an elderly woman told me at our school. She said that in her day, her mom would have her walk to the store and get a plug of chewing tobacco. They would make a rinse out of it, and although it dyed the hair auburn, they got rid of the lice!

I too have had my children endure countless treatments with over-the-counter shampoos that were supposed to kill lice to NO avail. I spent hours on the internet to find out what others are using and successfully rid my daughter's hair of ALL lice AND nits using this protocol:

1) Washed hair with generous amount of therapeutic denorex (previously called "extra strength"). You want to use the one that contains "coal tar". Allow the denorex to remain on the hair for 30 minutes and rinse. Comb out using a lice/nit comb.

2) Saturate the hair in Listerine and wrap head several times around in plastic wrap to form an air-tight seal. Cover in shower cap over night. Wash Listerine out with denorex and again, comb out. You should see little or no lice and/or nits.

3) At night, saturate hair in olive oil and again wrap hair several times around with plastic wrap. Do not rinse out till morning. Use Dawn dishwashing soap to remove olive oil the next morning. May take several washings.

This should be the end of the lice. Two days total. I poured some Listerine into a spray bottle and continued to lightly spray the hair to prevent any possible re-infestation.

**Meticulous combing is a MUST. Every nit must be manually removed or the process will begin all over again. Good luck!

I wish I would have had this information when my kids, now adults, were going to school. One method that I used which was very effective was white vinegar. Maybe they didn't like the smell, I don't know, but it worked and kept the lice away. The products that are out there to treat lice have very scary ingredients in them so it is nice to know that a 'safe' method is available. I'm going to pass on this information to the local health dept as school has started again so I'm sure the lice will make their rounds.

I tried everything I could. Here I am 29 yrs old and I caught head lice! Embarrassing as it was I couldn't take the scratching from my head any longer. I saturated my head with vinegar (it does smell pretty awful, I warn) and covered my head with saran wrap, then put a tight shower cap on my head and slept with it on overnight. The next morning, I found all the bugs dead right on the saran wrap! It works, you may want to try one or two more treatments to kill any newly hatched lice. Also try Red Wine Vinegar, or Listerine. Good Luck!

So my downstairs neighbors have been fighting lice since school started. They told me they were clean, came up to spend the night, and then a week ago my son started with an itchy head. I looked and looked and didn't see ANYTHING. Today (Thanksgiving morning), we are trying to leave and he is itch itch itch itch itch!!! I look, bugs! Oh. My. God.

At work I asked my friend what she recommends to her patients who can't afford the lice treatment. She immediatly said Listerine. OK, so Walmart is closed and everything else, I have mint-flavored Listerine in the house. I sprayed his hair and left it there while we continued to get ready. Washed out what I could, he really smells minty. I found 4 other bugs and they were all dead! Thank god!!! I plan to buy some Plain flavored today, but we will see just how well it works!!

I have been using Listerine for a week now and little by little the bugs are diminishing. I retreated with RID... but then as a preventitive used the Listerine... and once it dries it doesn't smell bad. KUDOS to this treatment! Now only if the psychological itching would stop!

I've had lice 3 times in the past 4-5 months!!! I've washed my bed sheets, pillow cases, everything that I thought could contain eggs or lice. I'm getting tired of it, what should I do?

My daughter had lice 3 times in one year; I found tradional shampoo for lice did not work but, I found out by reading your article that listerine works. To prevent lice from coming back, wash hair with tea tree oil every day. When hair is wet, mix listerine antiseptic and water, 2 eye drops full of tree tea oil in water bottle. Spray on scalp, and lice wion't come back--they hate that stuff.
Mom from El Cajon ca

Tuesday I picked my 3 year old daughter up from daycare to find she had a very bad case of head lice. I went straight to the store and bought a thirty dollar rid treatment, did every thing as follows, wash clothes, bed sheets etc... next morning, more lice. I then spent all wednesday from eight in the morning until eleven at night trying dawn dish soap which someone had told me, I also tried the mayonnaise treatment 4 times. Now it is Thursday, finally took her to her pediatrician, for prescribed medication. Came home, did that, and they are still there. Tiny tiny nits.

I'm so frustrated. I have already cut 5 inches off of her hair, have spent numerous hours on her. I don't know what else to do. I am reading all of these articles on listerine... so I might just give that a try, what do I have to lose?

I am a kindergarten teacher, and on occasion pick up lice from my students. The best home remedy I've ever used to kill lice and easily remove nits is coconut oil. I completely saturate my hair with the oil, and cover my head with a shower cap. Leave on overnight, and wash out with regular shampoo the next morning. Leaves hair silky and smooth without lice. Depending on the size of the infestation, I will do this again a second night. It really works!

Meticulous use of a nit comb is imperative no matter what treatment you use. You must remove every nit to prevent reinfestation.

My daughter and I went through the usual over-the-counter products, but it did not get rid of the lice. Mayonnaise and the nit comb worked on my daughter, but because I didn't have anyone to comb my hair, the lice were still present.

I read somewhere that you can get rid of lice by soaking your hair and scalp in vinegar, covering with a shower cap and leaving it on for 20 minutes a day for 10 days. I did this and the lice were gone! As a precaution I treated my hair with vinegar once a week for a month after just to make sure the little boogers were gone for good. The fumes were fairly strong, but it was OK after the hair was under the shower cap. Also, I was careful not to get it in my eyes.

My daughter has had lice 3 times and the Rid and Nix brands DO NOT kill the lice. This last time I tried Listerine. I doused her head and scalp and put on a shower cap for 2 hours. The problem was solved! She didn't have to be exposed to harsh chemicals and the Listerine is about 1/4 of the price of the "treatments" that don't even work!!!

Thank you for your article... although her hair smelled like Listerine for a couple of weeks (no kidding) we were all breathing a sigh of relief!

Listerine really works!!!!! When my child came home with lice I immediately soaked the head in listerine and put a shower cap on them. Make sure you have them sleep in the cap all night. In the morning you are guaranteed to find dead lice. I then soaked the head in vinegar as this loosens the glue of the nits and makes it much easier to comb out. However the comb is not as good as sectioning the hair and manually going through it yourself. I repeated this every other day just in case I missed a nit, this way no live bugs will be able to lay new eggs and reinfest the head.

My daughter caught lice from a friend. We tried the insectiside. The lice were still alive. I didn't want to put the insectiside on her scalp again, especially once I understood exactly how toxic it was.

I read about the Listerine on the internet and decided to give it a try. I used the blue kind. Anyway, she leaned back over the tub and I drenched (and I mean drenched) her head in Listerine. Then I covered her head with a shower cap and kept it on overnight. The next morning, the lice were DEAD!!!! Whoopee!!

I combed and combed and combed and combed. I repeated the process every 3 or four days for two weeks, because I was paranoid that I missed one. But I don't know how necessary that was.

My daughter had VERY long and thick hair and the combing took forever. I would make it easier for her by making some popcorn and putting in a good movie.

If you or your child has lice, PLEASE consider using this method before putting on those dangerous pesticides on their tender scalps. Remember, chemicals can and are absorbed through the skin, thus the effectiveness of the medicinal patches.

This worked for us, and I am going to intending to follow the suggestion of a previous comment to spray Listerine on their hair Sunday before school. What a great idea!!

I would NOT sleep with listerine in your hair.. My whole family used it.. we ALL got lice from my daughter who picked it up from a neighbor. We used Listerine full strength and let our hair soak in it under a plastic shower cap for about 2 hours. Then we washed with Denorex with a couple of drops of tea tree oil, did a comb out the next couple of days and never saw another nit or bug again.

I can personally tell you that Listerine works wonders. But be careful, if you're blonde you should never use the green, it can dye your hair. Always use green for brunettes and yellow for blondes and redheads.

Listerine is an old army secret, and it certainly beats olive oil and mayonaise. These are messy and time consuming.

Listerine works fast and you don't have to keep it in over night either a good rinse, leave it on a bit and then rinse out and shampoo, than I always took conditioner, inundated the hair in it and than combed out the stragglers. Good luck! Now MY head itches after reading all

I am trying the listerine ritual at this very moment. On myself. I am hoping this works. Thank you all for the advice

This entry will be difficult to imagine, but it may help others suffering with the problem I had. My scalp had been feeling itchy. I also had felt that something was crawling under my scalp too. Someone suggested using Listerine. For a few weeks I was continually washing my hair and after rinsing out my shampoo, pour about a medium size container of Listerine on my hair, rub it in and leave the listerine on my hair and scalp. I was really saturating my hair and scalp. After a few days some type of bug or mite ended up on my towel when I got out of the shower. It was about a quarter inch in length and was black with yellow markings. It also had lots of "pointers." Bear in mind, I am not sure how safe listerine is to use in this way. Check with a doctor to make sure saturating the scalp with Listerine would not cause other problems on the scalp.

I picked up lice from relatives when I visited Guyana, South America. I tried the RID treatment and thought I took care of the suckers. 3 months later, they are still there. I am trying the listerine treatment as we speak. I hope it works!

My baby girl 3 has lice today, im pretty stressed because I have no idea how she got it, Im a work at home mom and she doesnt attend daycare. Im even more stressed after reading the articles. I bought the nix stuff, she sat there for 4 hours the comb is useless she has super fine blonde hair, I know I didnt get all the nits out she fell asleep in my lap. Im going to have my husband go out and get the listerine and try that tomorrow. Does anyone know a better comb? i bought the seperate metal combs and they still dont help, not one iota.

I never thought to use Listerine. We tried it and it worked. I also purchased some Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Shampoo and Conditioner and my daughter uses it once a week. I guess the lice don't like the smell of that either, we had no further outbreaks.I am so glad I decided to go online, medication for head lice is costly and don't work. The combs are worthless. Happy Head in Maui Hawaii. We call head lice "Ukus"

My daughter has been fighting lice since Nov. 2007. This has been ongoing since. Every two weeks I treat her hair with the recommended OTC lice treatments. I have tried them all. They do not work. I am tired of spending $30 every two weeks to treat her and the whole family. She picked it up from kids in her class at school and there are a couple to attend the same church. I'm fed up with bugs and will definitely give the Listerine a good try. Thank you for your comments. I hope this works.

After the radio program this morning, I found your site and read about the gin and raisins to see if I could help my husband who has arthritis in his back. Cruising around after reading on that topic, I checked out the other home remedies. Useful info there. In reading about the lice remedies, I was glad to see that folks were avoiding the commercial lice treatment kits due to their toxicity. I have not used Listerine, but do know that Octagon Soap (in the old-fashioned label) is great for lice on people and fleas on animals. Octagon is lye soap in a large bar. With people or animals, you lather up and let the suds stay in place for 15 minutes or longer. You sometimes need more than one application. It is still easy, less fumes than Listerine, and is fairly cheap for all the benefits. I am happy to learn about Listerine, too, as Octagon is sometimes hard to find, while every drugstore has Listerine.
Dianne, who is old and wise.

I came across this site when I was at my wits' end with trying to get rid of my 12 year old daughter's head lice. She has had head lice on and off since February. After spending 100's of dollars on the RID, I tried the Listerine, and I couldn't believe it. I soaked her hair in the Listerine, kept a shower cap on for two hours. I must have found at least 10-15 lice, but dead. In all the other treatments I never once came across a dead one.

I hope this is the end of this nightmare.

We have also been battling the bugs off and on for a year with my 11 y/o. ( Sadly:( we suspect her best friend is the source of the the infestations. ) Frustrating to say the least. OTC don't work, but we hit them with the oil again and that killed most. BUT I am definitely going to try the Listerine. I am encouraged by those who have posted favorable results with it.

I have to warn you that this is not a plug for Listerine for lice since I never heard about it until today.

My daughter and I wound up with what we thought was an allergy to a shampoo during May and June of 2003. She got it first and even taking her to the doctor didn't reveal a lice problem. So we kept switching shampoos and scratching up a storm. And I mean scratching! We both had long hair and our backs and shoulders looked like we had Chicken Pox or something!

When we finally realized that it WAS lice in late July, we tried everything. And nothing worked--until I found something online about Denorex shampoo.

We lathered our hair up, wound a towels around our heads and left it on for 30 minutes, as the writer suggested. And let me tell you, it gets seriously warm on your scalp.

So warm, in fact, it must have fried both the lice and the eggs because we never had another problem with them!

And I'm glad. But it's pretty sad when you get your first-and only!-case of head lice at 43 years old!

I work with kids and have been fighting lice for some time now. I have used denorex and listerine which I think work sometimes but inevitably a couple weeks or month later more show up. I wash everything and vacuum. I don't know if I don't comb it enough or what. I live alone though and it is embarassing to ask a friend to do it especially when it seems to reinfest or happen so often. Also, my head gets dry from all of this and irritates it as well. I am kind of feeling hopeless with all this. Any advice?

My aunt had headlice, she got it from some other family members, she tried listerine and it really does work.

The children I do daycare for 5 days a week have it as well and I am doing everything I can not to do it as I am getting married in September and need to get my hair done in a salon. My hair is thick, curly and down to my butt and if I end up with it i will probably have to cut it off.

If I do the listerine trick, will it ruin my hair since I dye it?

I have spent over 2 hundred dollars and my daughter and i just can't seem to get rid of it and they keep coming back so i'm right now trying the listorine thingy and i'm not sure are you supposed to keep it in your hair while you sleep or just for two hours? please respond before the 2 hours!

Another treatment that works well is to cover the entire head with the Listerine, cover with shower or swimming cap for an hour-1 1/2 hours. Then cover with white vinegar (this helps take away the glue on the eggs & lice), let it sit an hour. Wash with denorex shampoo. WORKS WONDERS!!!

I got head lice from my work [i work at a daycare] and brought it home to my brother and sister. The RID shampoo didn't work, so out came the razor! my mom shaved both my head and my brothers. my sister however, treated her head with listerine and bam! the lice was gone! and although i am a girl, i kinda like the shaved head idea! lol
thanks for suggesting listerine!

My two young grandaughters have been infested with head lice for quite some time and it did not matter what I used or how often the problem never went away. My daughter came home the other day and told me that she had heard of using Listerene to treat head lice over the radio. I had some on hand, put it in a spray bottle and I'll be darned if the little buggers didn't come right out of their hair. Thanks for letting people know about this advice. I will definitely be spreading the word myself.

i am a 12 year old girl, and i got lice from my friend. believe me when i say that I've tried 2 different lice treatments such as RID and a major brand and they DO NOT work. 2 hours after a 3 hour combing and drenching, i am itching. i have asked my mom to go to the store to buy some listerine. i hope it works!
My hair is so thick and i hate spending 20 minutes combing through 1 section of hair! Listerine...I've heard it works really good. Please i tell you, PLEASE do NOT waste precious time and money into these "voted #1 lice killer" stuff they give you. IT DOES NOT WORK!

My family got lice that was resistant to every insecticide shampoo I could find. I did not know about listerine at the time, but I tried suffocating the lice with mayonaise, and other home remedies. In desperation I tried applying rubbing alcohol to the hair and combing it out, repeating this once a day for three days. It worked. It killed all the lice and all the eggs.
Listerine smells a whole lot better. But I bet the original Listerine (yellow) works best because it has the highest alcohol content.

Using Listerine and White Vinegar treatment was AWESOME! Worked better than the OTC toxic treatments, Mayo, blow drying to death, and nit picking! All the adults were killed and I would say a good 70% of the nits on our daughter's head combed right out! Did the treatment again the next day and all but a few nits remain. I am telling everyone I know about the use of Listerine on lice.

I tried the Listerine on my daughter last night. I'm hoping that it works. This has been a terrible battle with us. I've treated her 4 times with an OTC treatment and nothing worked. Every night I comb through her hair with a nit comb and I still get them. I'll let you know of the outcome!!

LISTERINE WORKS!!! I got rid of it in 2 days flat (one night). I'm a teacher. I'm around it ALL the time. Listerine is amazing!!!!...I also follow mine with vinegar more lice! they wash out in the tub.

Here in Houston it seems alot of kiddos get lice...mine are included. I tried the original Listerine...It worked beautifully!!!!
Soak the hair and scalp with Listerine (squeeze out), then put a showercap over their head for 2 hours. Wash out, then comb out with a fine toothed comb. You'll see dead lice.
After the hair drys, part hair and add (with a cotton ball) some rubbing alcohol to the scalp and about 2 inches out in the hair. The nits will come out easier. Comb out with a nit comb. My favorite nit comb is the one that looks like a little rake. Be sure to part hair in little sections, through out the hair...
Then take a lighted magnified glass and search through the hair, to make sure all the nits are gone. Lighted magnified glassed can be bought at Walmart around the optical places. They're wonderful!!!
Treat every 3 days...just to make sure...It sure worked for me!!!!

Okay, so I'm like, 13. And my aunt, asked me to brush my cousins hair, and i thought nothing of it. Bam, two weeks later, the family finds out that she has MAD head lice. So now, I have it too, and I'm sitting here typing with Listerine on my head. We've had lice here before, and tried Rid and Nix and it's all garbage. Listerine works, and so does mayo. But I'm not about to put mayo on my head, gross. I'm leaving it on for 2 hours, then rinsing, then spraying vinegar on it, then combing. I'd definitely suggest Listerine though.
it works.

Our kids (3 of them) have had head lice off and on for months. We have literally spent over $200 on Rid and the others that do not work. You comb out the bugs and they are still alive. We found some Tea Tree Leave in conditioner. It is in a spray bottle and works great. Bugs come out dead. For me I just used Listerine and all the bugs were dead that I combed out. Leaves my scalp feeling fresh too! I did not put on a shower cap, just soaked my head over the sink and combed. Works great. We are also using a coconut shampoo on the kids.

WORKS UNBELIEVABLY!! We have struggled with head lice for at least 6 years. We have 5 children and have never been successful at getting rid of the problem until 8 months ago. I used Listerine first soaking scalp then used Lice comb to comb through hair. Second wash hair using Dawn dish soap and then Extra-Strength Denorex. We washed all bedding and clothing adding Listerine and dawn dish soap. Vacuumed all carpet, upholstery, mattress sprinkling with Borax first. I still have the kids shampoo their hair once or twice a week with Denorex. We were rid of the lice immediately and are still lice free.

I have dreadlocks, and this is my first case of nits, argh!

I am going to use blue Listerine and a showercap for 2 hours, then rinse with dish soap(dawn).

Then I am going to use white vinegar and a shower cap for 2 hours, then rinse and shampoo with tea tree oil shampoo.

Then spray my hair with a combination of neem oil, tea tree oil, lavender oil and rose geranium oil, and spray it on my hair everyday and not rinse out.

Out of all my research this will be the only thing I can do, for I have dreadlocks and can't comb.

I will comment back in a week and let you know how I do. If this works I am spreading the word for all those out there with dreadlocks or those with small kids who simply can't sit still to get their hair combed.

I use Listerine original in a spray bottle with water, wet hair through and put a shower cap on the head ( 1 to 2 hours) depending on how bad the out break is. Rinse hair with warm water and put coconut conditioner (suave like .99) and comb through hair with lice comb to get the ones that did not fall out or rinse out. You can also use tea tree deep conditioner as a prevention. The bugs do not like the oils in it.

Ahhh! We are lice free with Listerine, Alcohol, vinegar, and Denorex! We sprayed 4 heads every night with LISTERINE before bed then combed and combed and combed every inch...and the lice were gone in 3 days. However, we continued this ritual for 7 more days in order to kill off any newly hatched eggs each day. I soaked the 4 separate nit combs in rubbing ALCOHOL between uses and dipped them periodically in the alcohol as I combed. We also used VINEGAR on one severely affected head to loosen nits, then extra strength DENOREX. Sure, it was labor intensive, but it was also cheap, safe and effective. Thanks for the tips, everyone!

My 10 year old daughter seems to get lice every time we turn around. I am trying the Listerine and vinegar as I type this. We have spent lots of money on the OTC lice killers and they DO NOT work!! I am tired of this and I know my daughter is too. I really hope this works. Thanks to all the people who has recommended this treatment.

We have been struggling with an outbreak of headlice for a week now. I have done everything I could think of. I finally got wise and searched for suggestions online. I am trying the listerine now. Trying to get a 5 and 6 year old to sit still for any length of time is not an easy task. Once I rinse out the Listerine I am going to use a tea tree oil conditioner and comb thru. I really hope this works. I also bought some coconut shampoo to have on hand. I read on another site that the lice does not like the coconut either. I will let you know how it goes.

Years back, when my kids were young, we had several bouts with lice. It was exhausting trying to deal with not only their heads but the laundry and toy 'quarantines'. After talking with several other moms, one of them suggested blow drying my children's hair as a preventative. She said the bugs couldn't take the heat from the dryer. I'm not sure if that's what did it or not, but it was simple and we never had another outbreak.

I have twin 2 yr old girls. One has gotten lice twice from daycare and the other twin, the bugs don't like her. I have tried the listerine remedy and it has worked great. However, I did have a question: my mom says that the listerine can soak into the kids' scalp and cause possible damage. Is this tru.


I am a nurse for a program in which I visit families pertaining health/nutrition. One training and assistance I do is "Head Lice". For those with reoccurring issue's- I recently put together a check list based on my own experience with my children in the past and with training I've received over the years in this program.

It is best to remove ALL "nits" for you do not know may be live eggs. Vacuum all vehicles/car seats child was in, notify persons children were with (give them a check list), make sure all hair items have been removed of hair in them and sanitized. (try boiling them if it will w/ stand this.) Heat can kill them... Utilize a hot clothes drier for items that can be used in them. Don't listen to the bag your items for 2 days, leave it bagged up to a month.

Make sure your home doesn't have folded clean clothes just left in several boxes/baskets (clutter)lying around. These things can lie in the darnedest places. Once you've vacuumed or nit picked, take bags outside immediately to trash. Sauve coconut shampoo/conditioner I've heard may be a preventative measure as well. Use hair spray/mouse as a preventative measure. (Harder for them to travel) Good luck. These critters are a pain and very hard to get rid of. I'm checking out the listerine... this would be another great tool to add to my bag of "tricks". My best to all.

OK!! I really am sad that I didn't find this article sooner!! My girls have had these harsh treatments to their heads several times! They have had to miss sooo much school because of this! We have done everything to the house and to our heads, we get them gone, kids go back to school, and not quite a month later they are back and usually worse then before!

We have spent sooo much money on useless products and have asked so many people. We even cut the girl's hair (short) to get rid of them! I will be picking up Listerine tomorrow! Thank You for this article!

Bonnie I am the same way. My girls re-infested within a month because the kid who started the initial infestations mom didn't pick the nits out and my girls school doesn't have a no nit policy.

I have treated several times with the chemicals and picked for over 4 hours a child. I was starting to worry about the chemicals so I had heard about the Listerine treatment. I have 2 kids sitting with Listerine and a shower cap as we speak! I didn't see about getting the original kind until after I put it on so they should smell minty fresh when I'm done. Hopefully this will do the trick for my 2 girls with very thick and very curly long hair. It's either that or pray the flapper hair style comes back in style!

Great advice, however, where did you find coconut oil and how did you treat your house/bedding, etc?

Worse yet, first time after all these years! I'm 56 years YOUNG. I plan on trying the Listerine after reading all of the comments on it.

Does the Listerine treatment dry out your hair? How about the white vinegar?

I used hair grease to kill them but that took forever to get out of our hair, but it did make it easier to comb the nits out! Once out I have been using the Listerine every other day just to be sure they don't come back. I am unable to comb through my own hair and my husband did it but who knows how good he really did it.

SO my hopes are if we did miss any the Listerine will kill the new ones. I ordered some tea tree oil and am going to add that to my shampoo to use on a regular bases and will make a spray out of it to put on furniture and carpets and such.

We had a terrible encounter with lice we got on vacation, but we have no idea who we got it from. We tried the RID & it didn't work, we tried the walgreens brand of lice treatment & it didn't work. Then I went online to see what else we could do & found out about the Listerine & I have it on my head right now. It kinda burns, maybe that's a good thing? Kills the bugs, hopefully.

the comments on this site were very helpful.

thank you.

I was concerned about the listerine and vinegar damaging my hair being that I have long extremely thick curly hair and it is professionally highlighted. However, when I weighed out the lesser of the 2 evils... being infested with lice and nits and suffering through itching and bites all over my scalp compared to drying my hair out or needing to have my hair colored and conditioned professionally again (and possibly cut) at the end of all of this... the treating my hair and being lice free is the top option in my eyes.

3 of my 4 children have come down with lice and I found out after I began having severe itching. At first I thought it was dandruff because I have never suffered from lice or dandruff and had no clue. I had my husband check my head for a week and he kept telling me he saw nothing there, not even dandruff flakes. Then he spotted the nits at the base of the hair on the neck. I immediately checked my kids heads with a magnifying glass and sure enough there they were!

I felt horrible that I didn't pick up on it sooner, especially with my one daughter weeks earlier when I noticed a little scabbing in her part line of her piggytails... I though maybe she bumped her head or got a little sunburn on her part and scratched at it. I called the pharmacist and she recommended NIX. I was up until 4:30 a.m. treating the kids heads and then my husbands and then my own, as well as vacuuming the couches, beds, rugs, lysoling the playroom and every content of it, turning the water heater on full blast and washing every towel, bedding and clothing that came in contact with us.

I then called the pediatrician the next day to ask what more could be done. The nurse there recommended vinegar and warm water rinses to remove the nits, however we still have some lice and nits. I am going to do the Listerine treatment on myself and the kids tonight when my hubby arrives home from work and then follow up with the vinegar treatment again tomorrow. I am concerned about how not to get reinfected- my 3 little ones are EVERYWHERE- they are 5 and twin 2 year olds.

I am treating and then stripping beds in the morning, vacuuming and lysoling pillows, mattresses and then rewashing bed sheets, ect. However, is this enough? I mean, my twins still nap once during the day- the kids are all over the house and I am feeling quite overwhelmed with this whole situation. I have vacuumed my minivan and their carseats and have washed their carseat covers in the extremely hot water too. I do not want to use the RIT spray on my couches, ect. because of the toxins... is vacuuming and lysol enough? I am just scared and feel disgusting and want these things out of my home!

We are in the midst of a lice infestation. I have tried a few things. The Listerine and vinegar work wonders. It is easier and more cost efficient. It does take more time, but worth while.

I am going to try the denorex today also. My girls have long, thick hair and all the cleaning, laundry is making me crazy and overwhelmed.

Good luck to everyone

I've done two treatments with the OTC stuff. My husband has checked me every night for 3 weeks. We keep finding a few nits each night, but they are generally at least one inch from the scalp. Then last night, he found 5-6 that were only about 1/4-1/2" from the scalp....Are these new nits?

When we lived in South Carolina a friend of mine was an R.N. We had five children in school, and she had this advice after two of our kids got lice. Take a bar of either octagon or fels napthaa soap and wash their hair once a week and rinse with vinegar and voila no more lice!!

I found lice in my daughter's hair & tried the OTC treatments. Did everything they recommended: Vacuumed, laundered everything in sight, froze all of our brushes & combs and found less but still an active infestation. We continued picking and cleaning etc. but even after the 2nd treatment we were finding live bugs. This was very frustrating.

We tried Vaseline. It worked but it was messy and took days to wash out.

Then we found it again. A friend told us about Listerine. We picked through her hair and used it. The next day I found only one.

The smell has lasted for over a week but I would take that over bugs and nits.

It worked & I will recommend it to anybody.

OK, so my daughter is 2 years old and I just found out today that she is loaded with lice. Now I haven't had it in like 10 years, and just found out that I have it as well! What should I do? I don't want to try mouth wash or mayo ...(that could hurt her right?) I haven't the slightest idea what to do. HELP ME PLZZZZ.



My boyfriend and I have been battling lice for awhile. We've been doing the Tea Tree Oil mixed with some coconut shampoo and while that may work, it has done nothing compared to Listerine. Plus, I don't know about you but the smell of Tea Tree Oil makes me sicker than a dog. And you can never get rid of the smell. I let the Listerine sit for about forty five minutes and then I combed through it and all the bugs I picked out (and there were like a million!) were dead. I suppose I should've left it in longer but time is limited, I don't mind dealing with it for a few days until it's gone. Who has time these days?!

Wow the Listerine, the white vinegar, the tea tree oil and the denorex shampoo have worked wonders for my 3 yr old daughter. She had a really bad case of lice. Now it's pretty much under control. Although I do have a question: after having done all of that and continuing to wash her hair with the denorex shampoo and spray the tea tree oil mixed with water in her hair, she has had no outbreaks of live lice in her hair, but I am still finding eggs and picking them out. Is that normal???

After reading all this info, I am about to try Listerine on my own head. A couple weeks ago, I switched shampoo/conditioner, and my head started to itch around that point. I thought nothing of it, seeing as how I was pulling no bugs from my hair. Last night, I was laying in bed with my boyfriend and found a bug on my head! I'm a 21 year old divorcing mother of two, the last thing I need is a case of head lice! I hope I can end this tonight before my children get it! Hope that the listerine works!

=( i have lice, I've been paranoid for weeks! And saw about two bugs & thought I was going crazy! My parents had me go to the school nurse & she said she saw nothing except some dandruff... so I went out and bought dandruff shampoo and some of the itching stopped, but then it started up again. Well today I finally saw a bug in my hair and pulled it out and freaked, it was def. a lice! UGHHH I'm so creeped out! Now I'm gonna try the Listerine I allowed to go to school or not?

I am a student and someone keeps giving me head lice when I go out with my friends! It's horrible. I have spent far more money than I can afford on different types of shampoo, some of them work, some of them do not. 'Hedrin' has worked better than others, but leaves the hair greasy. I emailed the friends and told them to check... two months down the line I start going back out with them and I get them AGAIN! Its upsetting me and I don't know what to do. I would like to be able to go out.

My boyfriend and I are going to try using Listerine tonight, he and I both have extremely long hair and we are having to buy 'Family' amounts of pricey shampoo, I am so glad there is a cheaper alternative to this insanity! I so hope it works!

Vinegar on my head, tried every thing, lice killing shampoo... Tired of this, so is my mom so don't use the lice killing shampoo. So what you do is you douse your head in vinegar, then you wrap your head in saran wrap and its supposed to work. I will keep you updated to see if it actually works. I hope it does because boy is my mom about to pulll her hair out she has treated me with shampoo twice, and it came back again, so DONT use the shampoo.

Thanks a lot for all the suggestions here!

This is what I did:
Night one: olive oil--I could feel it had reduced the population but still found live ones.

Night two: listerine for 2 hours, white vinegar for 2 hours. Then, I got paranoid (not sure if I imagined the movement or it's real) so slept with the mayonnaise. It feels pretty much like they are mostly gone... but feel like there are still stragglers. So will repeat the procedure...

Is there something I did wrong since those creeps didn't go as fast as everyone else said here?

Listerine is great!

My grade-school daughter got lice and we tried NIX and combed out with the nit comb for 6 hours since her hair is so curly. The lice were still alive. In fact, they were more active.

Next day we tried Listerine and got dead bugs, thank goodness. I dowsed her head with Listerine and wrapped it with Saran Wrap for 2hrs, then 1hr with white vinegar under Saran Wrap. Since we couldn't comb through with a nit comb, I repeated the Listerine treatment once a week, but she still got a recurrence after a couple of weeks. I switched to using a shower cap instead of Saran Wrap, which was much easier, and added Denerex shampoo and a coconut hair conditioner to the line-up.

I searched for nits and when I found a nit I cut the hair strand with scissors and removed the hair with attached nit. I repeated the Listerine-Denerex-coconut conditioner every 3 or 4 days for 2 weeks to kill any newly hatched bugs before they became adults and laid new eggs. It worked!

Both of my kids were just found to have lice (it was in their grades already) & one was worse than the other with the nits. The itching was terrible they said, that's what tipped me off to have the nurse check it out. I told the nurse I was not a fan of pesticides soaking into my kids' scalps & she said while most people want to hear that you used a chemical the lice seem to be resistant to them.

She gave me a paper about Cetaphil skin cleanser as a treatment option. I started by using orig. Listerine-- I poured it over their heads while they leaned over the tub, then put on a shower cap and left it for at least 2 hrs. When I went to rinse w/ white vinegar, dead ones were falling off. My husband and I each took a child and proceeded to use a lice comb the school nurse gave us to remove all of the dead lice and the nits. It took a couple of hours to do about three passes on each child, but we managed to get almost all of the nits off.

I then put on the Cetaphil lotion/cleanser to the entire scalp as directed on the paper she gave me & then put on a shower cap & they went to sleep. The point is that this technique suffocates them supposedly. I think tomorrow I will call our doctor and get a prescription for Ulesfia. It is supposed to be a two treatment process that is not a pesticide/toxic (its benzyl alcohol) & also causes them to suffocate & die.

This is such a time-consuming issue! I never realized how difficult it was to get rid of lice. Good Luck to anyone who is unfortunate enough to have lice happen to them. If you don't wash EVERYTHING in hot water, I hear they can return. We even threw our couch pillows in the dryer on high heat for 30 minutes. We left nothing untouched, so hopefully this does not return to our home! Oh well--it's spring cleaning time anyway, I guess.

I read all of the comments on this website, and have just come back from the store with Listerine. I hope this works. I am 30 and this is the first time I have ever had lice. It is terrible. I spent hours combing my own hair. I hope I can get everything out by myself!!!

I have been fighting lice on my daughter since November and nothing seems to work. I have tried the store shampoos, green tea shampoo, vinegar, olive oil, bleach and I have even dyed her hair at 7. Nothing has worked. I am at my wits end and hoping that the Listerine will work. After all this time I I have my first case of it. thanks for all of the tips.

I absolutely agree, if the physocological itching can stop I will be fine, My daughter came down with lice, I was checked and don't have it, but as a precaution, I am using denorex shampoo and Listerine original flavor just as a precaution, washing the pillows and the sheets constantly.

I even bought a spray at the drug store to kill lice and the nits on the mattress and the rugs. I am washing everything everyday for about 2 weeks and rechecking my daughters head every day to make sure there is no more sign of anything. If you don't check every day they will only come back.

So as I was getting my 6 year old ready for school this am I saw those nasty little bugs and they were all freshly hatched, so after about 2 hours of picking them all out and popping them with my fingers I soaked her head in alcohol and conditioner then washed it 3 times in my husbands axe shampoo (like it said to on a google search I did). I can't find a nit or a bug at all.... so I proceed to check my 3 year old's head... I found one sesame seed sized louse... no nits or any other bug he got a Listerine and conditioner wash followed by axe shampoo... checked him again no nits or bugs at all... in the process of washing all their bed linens... had my mother in law check my head and it was clean but I am still gonna do the Listerine wash on myself. I called the school and apparently there is an outbreak here but they did not feel the need to send letters home telling parents.

Over seven years, thousands of dollars spent, and we've repeatedly tried all the various remedies listed above and more. I've given up hope, but will of course keep constantly treating. At least, it keeps them somewhat controlled. I've rinsed with Listerine, but haven't let it sit, so I'll try that. I'm always looking for new ideas. I was encouraged by the family who said Listerine got rid of a 5 year infestation.


I have four girls 11, 9, 6 and 4 and everyone has lice including me. Did your treatments work? Desperate to know. I've never experienced anything like this.

Any info will be helpful.

Thank You,


I'm 20 years old and pregnant and discovered the other dray that I have lice!!! I have been washing and combing for 4 days now with the lice killing shampoo and nit combs and nothing!!

So I'm gona try the Listerine idea, I hope it works!!!

If I do that method do I have to use a nit comb afterwards or can I just comb thru my hair like normal and just keep repeating the process for awhile??


Just tried using the Listerine method for the first time, just wanted to ask does it kill just the lice? or the lice AND the eggs? Thanks a bunch.


HI. I'm gonna try this Listerine thing. we shall see. And imma try RID comb or whatever. Hope it works. I'll keep you posted.

I have 4 school age children and we have been fighting lice for a good couple of months, one day I did a google search for home remedies because NONE of the store bought or prescription stuff works.

I found the Listerine method and am trying it right now and can feel them dying. I plan on putting it on our heads and leaving it for 30 min. to an hour and repeating it every other day for a week, just to make sure that they are ALL gone, but from this mom to you IT IS WORKING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm a preschool teacher and while sing our morning songs I noticed I was itching like crazy!!! One of my students was absent because she found out she had lice... and gave it to me. Right now I'm sitting here with Listerine on my head waiting for the two hours to go by then I'm putting on the vinegar. I only found two bugs so far (how gross) Please God... I hope this works!!!

We have a 12 year old daughter with extremely thick natural curly hair, Jr high School starts tomorrow and wouldn't you know the weekend before school starts shes digging. So I check her and sure enough she is severely infested.

So I google home remedies and I read about the Listerine and vinegar thought we would try it. My husband bought the off brand version and put it on her hair followed with a shower cap for 2 hrs then rinsed with vinegar while I was at work.

I come home and started combing and nit picking it. Washed all bedding, clothes etc. The next day we get up to start again and bam more bugs! Against my better judgment I stopped and got Rid after work. I really think its going to be a waste but with school tmrw I had to do something. So I have to ask after arguing it with my husband it has to be (Listerine) not some damn cheap off brand, right? Is this why it didn't work?

I am at the end of my rope and ready to shave her head. Also he only bought a medium bottle, I think maybe to that wasn't enough to do it. Please if anybody can help with advice or answers it would be greatly appreciated. 8-24-10

It's been a month know I have lice!!! I got it from my sister who got it from someone.... I am extremely pissed off because its not going away... I've tried every brand of chemicals that kill lice. Its just awful.. I also tried olive oil and vinegar... But after all that I feel that there is still something crawling in my head..... I am panicking and I have no one to help me.... For Listerine, I'm definitely giving it a try since I have no other choice.

Other solutions like shaving my hair off is so scary and risky. I don't want to go bald just because of lice... It's not fair at all for me to pay my hair for a silly problem..

My daughter ended up with lice about two weeks ago (well, that's when we noticed it). She most likely picked it up from a sleepover where we later learned that one of the girls at the sleepover had lice. Anyway, we have treated with lice shampoo twice, every other day comb outs, vacuum, clean, wash, heat kill...... everything. The first time I treated her, I combed out hundreds of nits and about a half dozen bugs.

A week later with the second shampoo, I combed out 3 bugs and maybe a dozen nits. Today (another week later) I did the Listerine treatment. I combed out one bug and probably about half dozen knits. Slowly but surely we are getting rid of them. I plan to do Listerine treatments every 3-4 days with comb outs in between and continue that for at least two weeks after I no longer find any bugs.

I am also treating myself and doing comb outs, but I'm sure it's not as thorough as having someone else do it. If the Listerine does the trick, we will be doing a Listerine wash and comb out every week from here on out. I do not want to have to battle these things again. She had them 4 years ago and the shampoo and house cleaning did the trick the first time. However, this go around has been a different story.

So my sister's step-children all have lice. We were staying with my mom until the purchase on our house went through. My sister and her husband and five kids moved in before we moved out and I got lice. I'm a breastfeeding mother so I did not want to use chemicals and such. Besides growing up we would get it from school and that stuff never worked. Right now I'm sitting here with Listerine on my head. My pillows and other bedding getting washed.

Going to vacuum too (hopefully the baby doesn't wake up.) I only had the mint kind so it will have to do. I hate these things and think they are horrible. Plan on washing this out in another hour then pouring vinegar on it and wrapping it in saran wrap before bed.

Hopefully this will nix them. Have to bomb for fleas any ways so will get some stuff that kills lice. Have to tell you this sucks having fleas and lice all at once. (Previous owners of house had loads of dogs and cats!!!)

Follow up to my Sept 12 post....... I did the Listernine treatment for the first time on Sept 12. Again Sept 15 and again on Sept 19. I have done comb outs in between. This seems to have worked. I only found nits on Sept 15, and on Sept 19, I found no nits and no bugs. Will continue it for another week just to be sure. But, this really does seem to work.

I am a believer in Listerine. Used it on my 7 year old and dead bugs fell out. I drenched her head and put a shower cap on for 2 hours. Afterward, I rinsed her head with white vinegar and used a nit comb. I am thrilled to know something so simple can be done.

LISTERINE WORKS!! My daughter is 9 and has had lice at least 7-8 times. She and her best friend constantly pass it back and forth. Her friend's mother has 5 kids and is a single parent and I don't believe she has the time to thoroughly rid the kids and the house of the infestation.

Anyway, I have tried EVERYTHING in the last few years to include this vacuum cleaner like thing I ordered from the internet! The first time she had it, I tried RID... to no avail. Then I tried some natural stuff I ordered off the internet. That worked... but cost about $70 and took all day! I've tried the Cetaphil, electronic lice comb, natural treatments, all over the counter. Never got anything from the doc.

Then I heard about the Listerine and vinegar! I bought the regular Listerine... put it in a spray bottle and doused her dry hair with it. Then put it in a shower cap for 2 hours. Rinse that off and then clean the spray bottle out and put white vinegar in it and douse it with that. Put a new shower cap on for another 2 hours. Comb the nits out and then wash it out with Selsun Blue Island Breeze (must have the Salicylic Acid in it). Let that sit for 10 minutes before you rinse it out. Then use the Suave Coconut kids shampoo on their hair when you wash it the rest of the time. It's cheap and the bugs hate coconut.

I've also heard to put a few drops of tea tree oil in their daily shampoo also. Haven't tried that but I've read good reviews on it.

Also, as mentioned in other posts, make sure you vacuum, and wash all clothing and spray items down you can't wash. Don't forget their car seats also.

When using listerine and vinegar, do I rinse listerine out and then rinse with the vinegar, or do I rinse the listerine out with the vinegar?

I'm going to try the Listerine and white vinegar method soon, wish me luck. I just found a bug last night, I HATE head lice with a passion! They are so difficult to get rid of, let's hope this works.

I have to say I am really impressed with the Listerine and vinegar treatment. Our daughter has had lice for the last week, and treating with Rid did nothing. My wife did some research and found out about the Listerine / vinegar treatment and I figured that we had nothing to lose, so I picked up a liter sized bottle of Original Listerine after picking my daughter from school (her school has special rules if a child has lice. She is handled a little differently, but at least she doesn't miss any school and she isn't ostracized.)

A note about the Listerine - rw asked about it back on Aug 25. I am no chemist, but I know that Listerine is Listerine, and anything else is not. Listerine has a number of special ingredients that the off brands skip, and it is probably one of these special ingredients that are killing off the lice. To put it another way, does a store brand cola taste like Coke (or Pepsi or RC - I'm not going to get in the middle of a cola war)?

Anywho, I washed my daughter's dry hair with Listerine, got it good and soaking wet, then covered it up with a shower cap for two hours. When that was done, I rinsed her hair with a vinegar and water solution (about 25% / 75%, but it should have been straight vinegar), then combed her hair with the lice comb and my nails. As her hair dried out, I sprayed her hair with the same mixture.
Since it was a four hour ordeal, we took a couple of breaks, and I noticed as the time got later and later, the nits were coming out easier and easier. That leads me to believe that I should have soaked her head for two hours with the vinegar before combing.

I will soak her head again in two days and repeat for a week until I am positive that everything is gone. It's not easy, but... I got nothin.

Good luck all!

Did the Listerine work? My daughter got it out of my 3 kids and I did the mayo remedy and all the bugs were dead but she still has nits to get out they say Listerine helps remove them.

Listerine will only help kill the live bugs. The vinegar soak will help loosen the nit's glue, but you still have to comb the whole head in a controlled fashion to get rid of the eggs. If you don't get rid of all the nits, you might get another infestation, since it seems nothing gets through their exoskeleton, unfortunately.

I have 2 daughters and have battled lice with both of them. I have tried all the OTC pesticides and conventional methods. Frustrated I contacted their pediatrician. He prescribed Acticin, which is a prescription topical medicine is used for scabies. You comb it through the hair and sleep in a shower cap. It gets rid of the lice and the nits... much easier then spending hours combing and picking them out.


We discovered my daughter had brought home lice, and her brothers had gotten it from her. We treated everyone with Rid, and did the whole laundry/vacuum/bagging stuff combo. A week later, still had live lice. Used a second product (I want to say Lice rx but I am not positive, it was a green bottle, gel that you leave on for 10 minutes & comb out).

This time I spent nearly 4 hours combing out my daughter's hair. 5 days later still found a few live lice (and ready to cry from feeling like we would never conquer this). After reading this site I changed the game plan. We sprayed Listerine on everyone, shower caps for 2 hours, washed with coconut scented shampoo, sprayed white vinegar, combed out. Also, redid the laundry/vacuum combo & put fresh rosemary sprigs in all our pillows.

Have done the vinegar + comb out twice more to make sure we got all the eggs but 10 days later I am not combing anything out. I am calling our family lice free. Thanks so much to all the previous posters!

People, you are right, the OTC shampoos etc. are ineffective. The bugs come RIGHT back. I washed everything in the house so many times, I finally tried ammonia and water, took the nits out in a hurry, but bugs came right back. I tried rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle, stopped them in their tracks and minutes later my hair was dry again. I'm trying Listerine, later today. But the rubbing alcohol can just be sprayed constantly, it costs nothing. You get to the point where all you can think about is lice.

Day 1 - used OTC creme rinse. Combed out live lice. Removed nits.

Day 2 - Sprayed generic "Listerine" on my daughter's hair. Covered with a shower cap. Left on for two hours. Found 6 DEAD nymphs. (Two on the inside of the shower cap.) NO live ones. 1 nit. Amazing!!!

I routinely rinse my hair in my grandma always had me do and i still get the damn things at 19!

I used the mint Listerine for the lice but now I can't get the smell out. Any suggestions?

Listerine works for me. RID did not.

You must repeat the Listerine with cap for 2 hours every 2-3 days for 2 weeks. You must do your best to metal comb or hand-pick the nits. There is nothing that really kills the eggs so if you miss any, they will hatch. But don't worry, by doing the treatment every 2 days, you will kill the lice before they mature to mate therefore, reducing the amount of eggs laid.

Live lice stays near hair, so clean/vacuum areas where the head rest-pillows,car seat, sofa. Eggs, once away from head, will die shortly because they need the constant heat. I place a hand towel on pillow and remove for washing after each use. So don't spend too much time cleaning all other areas but instead, concentrate on getting the nits out, so check the hair everyday, soak comb and hair items in alcohol for at least1 hour between using and REPEAT Listerine every 2 days for 2 weeks for everyone in household. Just because you can't see them, it doesn't mean their not on your head. Best to be sure by treating properly to break the egg cycle.

omg! My mom sis and I have been battling lice for like I swear a looonng time. We have done everything, despite the fact of cutting our long hair. I've never hear of Listerine and white vinegar in your hair. I have been so embarrassed and would not let any people look @ my hair or even touch it even if they say I have pretty hair. I'm gonna try this method. I pray it works. I'm tired of dealing with it.

I'm 13 years old & in my life have had lice a total of 3 times. The first time I was 6 & was badly infested. The second I was 10 & my mom caught it just in time & just cut them all out. Now the third time. In mid-November I was so itchy so I told my mom & of course I had lice. It wasn't too bad, my mom just cut them all out.... or thought she did. I was itchy again so my mom washed my hair with denorex, & bought an old fashioned metal comb, & combed my hair & she ripped a lot of hair out!!!!

We thought it was all out until about 2 days ago I was itching so much my mom checked me & I was so badly infested! I have long really thick hair down to my butt. So my mom put my hair in 10 sections & found like 50 eggs & nits in each section by just by the naked eye. So my mom bought rid ( which didn't work). I took matters into my own hands, & researched home remedies to get rid of lice. I found the Listerine & white vinegar treatment. I am sitting here typing with Listerine in my head covered by a shower cap !!!!! I'll give you the remedy I found researching...

First, soak the head in Listerine, cover it with a shower cap for about 1 to 2 hours; the ingredients in Listerine bloat & kill the bodies of the lice.

Next, wash out the Listerine & then soak the head in white vinegar, cover it with a shower cap for about to 1 to 2 hours; the white vinegar dissolves the glue that holds the nits (eggs) to the hair shaft.

Wash out the White Vinegar, then slather suave coconut conditioner in the head, add tea tree oil, lavender, rosemary or other strong smelling essentials to repel the lice.

Comb the hair with the conditioner still in it to see if there are any more nits or bugs (there shouldn't be unless you didn't completely saturate the hair), then rinse and let air dry.

Repeat the Listerine/vinegar soak every other day for a week, to make sure any nits (eggs) that you missed don't have a long enough time to hath & procreate. Also, repeat the treatment for once a week for a few weeks to make sure child doesn't bring back lice from where they caught it. Also continue using the coconut conditioner, to help prevent lice from coming back.

Hope this works for everyone.

Hi there all, well done to the Listerine and White Vinegar. It works with use of combing through. Also to add to ideas. Once the process has been done as in List. & Vinegar then for boys, gel their hair for school. Louse find it difficult to stick to gel and hairspray. For girls use hairspray, firm hold and tie up [a must for school].

Listerine [use the brand name, like other lady said above]. And also Listerine is
anti-bacterial plus contains a number of other worthwhile ingredients as well. Unlike other copies of mouth wash at cheaper prices. And of course the vinegar does the un-glueing.
Anyway on another side of looking at things and the background to our conclusions we found. We prayed, we believe in the power of prayer and that it; "Prayer changes things and people." Anyway on the day of dealing with the lice problem and using non-working otc stuff and also the emotional massive frenzied ordeal of shock and horror!!!! where had they come from??? Not to mention the cleaning everything in sight untill late hours of the night as well. We were exhausted. So as I said we sat down and prayed together. We asked the Holy Spirit to help us with further ways to destroy the unwelcome critters [we believed to receive an answer and we got one]. At this moment I hadn't even considered looking on the internet, honestly, didn't have time. Had to clean!!!!!

Well once we got our thinking caps on and [other head caps ha! HA!]. We had time to search the net, at last. We found out the origin of the louse.They are a Parasite .It was then I thought of Listerine being, anti-bacterial. So I asked the internet about Listerine and found all these other people had come across the same thing. I was ecstatic. Plus the vinegar for un-glueing eggs [nits and nymphs [juvenile louse]. And looking at a life cycle chart for louse is very educating indeed. Got that off Google Images.

Moving on, as I said after gathering all of our info. "We need heat to kill them as well." [Please note I have only come across this site today, 20/2/11 and someone else mentioned the blow drying]. You are right it does work and I also asked the internet that question of the heat after praying. Someone else on another site had found out the same thing about the heat with straighteners, so I believe we heard right.

Anyway when you search for answers you will find them.

So 15/2/11 we got our extra answer of blow drying the hair as well, after the treatments. We believed it to work. So after treating with Listerine and vinegar, then washing with head/shoulders shampoo [great for dandruff and as said above in other peoples entries; lice eggs resemble dandruff in a lot of ways [bit of a creamy colour, new ones. Dead ones, completely ice-white, that's how you tell difference of dead or alive. Live ones more near base of scalp. All the same dandruff removes easily, nits stick]. We set to with hair dryer for boys, as well as myself and then I used hair straighteners for me. I have long straight hair. [Try curling tongues after hairdryer for curly hair]. Then use the nit comb [it goes through easier after the heat applied] and comb through [have a cup of water handy for dipping between strokes so as not to put dead nits back in]. For curly hair, it's hard to comb [but as said, the heat from tongues, softens the hair and can make nit combing and picking easier for girls].

And afterwards we gelled my boys hair at night to sleep. [Hairspray if you have girls]. This restricts breeding and movement of the critters [if they still remain].

Well I can honestly report we have not had any lice hatch at all after discovering the first lot of live ones on my youngest 5 days ago. All eggs gone with these methods and extra dead from the heat of the hair irons etc. We have done this every 2 days since getting them. And also to cut down cleaning, we place towels on pillows at night and then put them for washing daily. This is the first time we have had lice, it's been 6 days now and all the above are working. My boys are out at golf 20.2.11, enjoying normal life once again, but now with hair gelled. [11 years and 14 years] and no more nits or LICE - Hatched ones.

We clean as normal to, got frantic to start with but then calmed down.

God's Grace keeping me keeping on I can tell you, but to me those critters have no right to be in my house. I empathize with you all. So as my 11 y/o said, try heat as well. Whether it be blow drying, hair straighteners, curling tongues, whatever and then COMB out. We then put gel in boys hair to sleep and for school. Use hairspray for girls at night and hairspray for school as well as tying long hair up.

Remember towel on pillow for sleeping, cuts down on linen washing constantly. Towels easier to peg out. All the best from a Believer, INJN. Amen XXXX

Generic mouthwash works just as well as Listerine. Soak hair for 2 hours covered in a shower cap. It kills ALL of the bugs so no need to use any other shampoos, mayo, vaseline, special chants, spells, voodoo, amulets or magic charms ;-)

Soaking hair in vinegar for 2 hours gets rid of most of the nits. You will prolly have to pick a few eggs out. Check for nits once a week.

That's all.

No, tried it and tried it, it doesn't work, not where I live, with super-bugs.

Hi I am 18 years old and have been taking care of lice now for along time now. My sister at 16 years old keeps coming home with lice from her bfs house. I was and am so sick of coming down with Lice. Her and I share a room. I have treated and treated my head and sisters and everyone else in the house. After doing this every two months we still get them. Now we have tried every bottle treatment out there. Nix, even prescription strength lice treatments and so on and so forth. NOTHING HAS WORKED. On the other hand though we have used the mouthwash treatment and it works great.


1. Let the mouthwash sit in your head Two hours with Shower cap on.
2. With mouthwash on head add 1 tablespoon White vinegar
3. Warm up One to Two teaspoons of Tea Tree oil for 30 sec then add to your hair with the white vinegar. Place A FRESH NEW SHOWER CAP over your head.
4.Let sit in your hair for another Two hours.
5.Rise with just shampoo.
6.COMB COMB COMB though hair till no more nits are to be seen.
7.Keep combing for the next few days to make sure there all gone.


I keep telling my mom that but sometimes I think the lice got to head and has messed with her brain.

Also vacuum and and spray down mattress floors with mouthwash and color safe bleach. Wash all clothes and bed sheets and what ever else you came into contact with flea and tick shampoo or two to three teaspoon mouthwash.

I wish you all the luck with your journey.

I posted this before but I do not see it. I tried the Listerine and everything above, many times. What worked the first time, totally, was the RobiComb. At Walgreen's or online. It electrocutes the lice and doesn't hurt you. And they are gone, gone, gone. And I had lice that were resistant to everything.

I discovered that my 12 year old son had lice 4 days ago. I sent my husband to the store to get some RID and treated his head and then combed out all the nits I could find. The next day I found more live adult lice. I searched the web and discovered this web page about Listerine. I tried it (2 hours under a shower cap followed by 1/2 an hour with vinegar). I rinsed it out and combed again. I have not found any lice since then. I check a couple times a day and have found a couple more nits that I missed but no lice. YEA!!! I plan to treat again in a weak. I also found 1 louse on my daughter and treated her. No more on her and only found a couple nits. This really works.

I have 4 kids and I spent so much money on RID and Nix. Neither one worked so a counselor told me about the Listerine and it definitely worked. I washed all of my kids' hair and mine with the Listerine and sprayed all the furniture with lysol and washed all the sheets. NO MORE LICE!!!! It is sooooo cheap and so easy!

My 11 yr old daughter keeps coming down with head lice. We have been battling this epidemic for the past month. I have used this Listerine trick from this web site. It worked great. I never thought of using the Listerine on Sunday before school starts. We know where abouts they are coming from and I have notified all the parents of the park to check their kids heads, but I did not tell them who started it to save the poor girl humiliation.

We are doing the Listerine again and we are using the Listerine spray trick every night to prevent it from happening again. I love the idea of my home smelling minty fresh when when I get home.... cheaper than room scent sprays LOL. I swear on this trick I even told the school principle and she had put this idea in the school newsletter because it would help save parents money on buying the expensive treatments.

hi! I discovered I have lice after scratching my head for a months and blaming it on the hard water... I am breastfeeding a 1 months old baby. is Listerine safe to use? please can anyone help...?

You would be absolutely safe using the electronic RobiComb, you can use it over and over again, even in future infestations, whereas all the chemicals have to be bought each time. And they don't work. Listerine did not work for me. I had lice for 6 months, the Robicomb killed them immediately.

I spent over $150 dollars trying to treat my 3 girls' head lice problem that they brought home from school. The problem actually got worse! The school nurse told me to use original Listerine (the yellow one). Soak on hair for 2 hours (cover with cap). Rinse. Then soak hair with vinegar or apple cider vinegar (the apple cider vinegar leaves the hair soft). Again cover with a fresh cap and let sit for one hour. Rinse. Remove eggs. Continue to look for and remove eggs over the next couple of days until they are all gone. Wish I knew this from the start!

I also used suave coconut conditioner in their hair at every shampoo as a repellant. Tea Tree Oil is another repellant. I add several drops to a bottle of detangler and comb through their hair every morning and evening (can't be too careful!). Remember to wash all clothing, bed linens and towels in hot water as further prevention of reinfestation. I sprayed car seats etc. down with lysol to kill anything left clinging on the fabric.

So, my daughter, Stephanie, came down with lice ten days ago. I was up in hairs trying to get rid of them, and here, I found Listerine. I found it to be THE BEST treatment ever!!!

We tried the commercial delousing chemicals and until a few days ago, thought it had worked. Unfortunately, my wife and daughter both had these little terrors in their hair. What I ended up doing has worked so far and I haven't seen any further nits or lice in either of their hair. Not to mention, neither my son or myself have yet to catch anything.

You'll need the following:

Metal nit comb -The RID brand nit comb works well because you can you the larger comb side to detangle and the smaller side to really dig in and remove the eggs.

Suave Coconut Conditioner

Tea Tree Oil

Listerine - Original formula

Disposable shower caps (two minimum per person) per treatment.

An open schedule.

1) Thoroughly soak the scalp and hair with the Listerine. You'll need to massage it at the scalp to make sure it's really soaking the area well. I used a coffee travel cup to pour the Listerine on the scalp. This way you don't waste much and are able to spot treat the areas better.

2) Cover the head with a disposable shower cap and keep it on their head for a minimum of two hours.

3) While you're waiting on the Listerine to soak for a few hours, take all the bedding, pillow cases, blankets, etc... and start the laundry. Anything that is not washable, throw in the dryer for 20 minutes on high heat to kill any lingering lice/nits. I had a spray that came with a previously purchased lice kit that I used to spray on chairs, inside hats, my SUV's head rest and anything else I needed to treat.

4) After minimum of two hours, rinse, shampoo, rinse and dry the hair. Be sure to bag all your towels and clothing for the laundry. Don't forget to bag and throw away the disposable shower cap.

5) Fully saturate the hair with Suave coconut conditioner. Again, be sure to massage and squeeze the conditioner directly to the scalp and fully cover ALL hair.

6) Place drops of tea tree oil throughout the scalp area and massage well. I ended up squeezing approximately 30 drops to my wife's head, then put more on her hair for good measures.

7) Place another shower cap over the hair and keep on for another 2 hours, minimum.

8) The next step is a little time consuming. You remove the shower cap and begin combing the hair with the nit comb. It's messy as the conditioner and tea tree oil is still in the hair, but then again, the conditioner helps allow the small comb through the hair. I also had a pot of hot boiled water and a towel next to me so I could rinse the comb out and wipe away the conditioner with the towel. This also allows you to clean the comb of nits and lice while you comb through. Remember to bag up all clothing and towels for a wash in the laundry.

9) Once you've finished combing through the conditioned hair, multiple times, take a shower and rinse everything off as usual. You'll want to use the coconut conditioner after you shampoo still. Comb out the hair and add some drops of tea tree oil to the scalp before bed time.

10) The next day and everyday after for 2 weeks, comb through the hair with the nit comb and thoroughly inspect the hair.

Dealing with lice is a pain and if you think all you need to do is a simple hair treatment and move on - you'll be very surprised at how hard it is to get rid of these parasites. Take a little time up front to rid yourself of these pests and you'll be happy that you did.

Don't freak out and use pesticides, cut off your hair or throw your belongings out. Unless, they are just horrible - then burn the place to the ground.

Good luck!!

I went to the pharmacy and picked about 120 dollars in shampoos, combs, treatments, sprays. When I was checking out the cashier told me that she knew how to get rid of lice without any expense treatment. The papaya seeds needs to get dry in the sun and mashed, you put this in the head with alcohol and your scalp will never see a lice again, I did it with my daughter and haven't seen a lice or egg since I treated her. It worked wonders

After nightmarish treatments with chemicals to get rid of my daughters persistant lice,a nurse told us to use Helmans Mayonaise.We were willing to try anything after months of no success.We coated her hair,overnight,with a showercap on & towels underneath.All of the lice were dead.The nits became unglued out of the scalp.Her hair was so soft,and only required one shampoo.She has very thick,curly hair.Only one treatment did the trick,after months of no success.What a relief!We could never repay that nurse,but can only pass on the information.P.C.

How many days did you have to apply the Listerine?

Okay SO I know you probably posted this FOREVER ago, but I have to ask. I'm a blonde. I want to use the Listerine thing, I have only found about 4 full grown lice, and 3 babies, and only 2 nits. I don't care I'm obsessive and itchy. Its driving me CRAZY!!! So being a blonde. Can I use the blue kind? mine is by Top care has everything Listerine does, but its called blue mint. Its blue clearly. SO can I use it? Will it dye my hair? I have a wedding my hair can't be blue or green but I can't have lice either!!!

This worked so very awesome on my Grandkids the Listerine just killed those little buggers we were having such a hard time with the lice they just would not go away well.
Then we used the Listerine and away they went and we haven't seen them since.

I just got done using the Listerine. Kept on for 3 hours. Then I rinsed with vinegar. I sprayed more vinegar and combed threw her hair. I pulled out only dead lice. I also pulled out many nits. She then washed with Denerex and conditioned with coconut conditioner. I hope this kills the lice and of course I will nit comb continually. I have been trying to get rid of the lice for awhile now. Her hair is super thick and curly. I will keep you posted and let you know if it works.

If you're blonde you want to use the original as the blue will dye your hair.

It worked. No more lice and no more nits. I will continue to do the treatment for 7 days.

Just discovered I had lice, though I'm not sure of the source!

Hope this works!
And I'm hoping it doesn't dye my hair!

I am a 12 year old girl and and I have VERY VERY thick hair. I get lice every year since 2 or 3 grade and this year I've had four times!!! I have it now and I'm tired of it. I am scared someone is going to see a louse in my hair at my camp. I tried pouring Listerine but, I couldn't stand the smell for two hours. Any suggestions??


24 years old and getting head lice - ICK!
My 3 children got lice back in August 2010 and it's been such a battle since then! Boys are easy, shave their heads and be done with it. But my little girl, how could I do that to her? We've tried EVERY OTC remedy with no success. Hours and hours of combing, picking etc. I finally hit my wits end when a month ago I discovered I had it. I know there should be "no shame" but my God I can't help but feel it. I'm scared to go anywhere, be around anyone. Scared to have anyone around my little girl :(


I discovered this Listerine topic today and thought I'd give it a whirl! I soaked my girls head with Listerine, covered and let it sit for 2 hours, rinsed with vinegar, and combed combed combed (do you know how hard it is to get a 3 year old to sit still???). To my surprise, unlike with OTC treatments - every bug I pulled was DEAD! I couldn't believe it! I combed her hair until the comb ran through every piece clean. We WILL be repeating this for the next couple of weeks along with the typical washing, sterilizing, scrubbing etc.

I am now sitting here with minty smelling hair waiting for my combing time. Itchies be GONE (I hope!)

After nearly a year of being at my wits end, I hope we can regain some normalcy in our lives and come out of hiding.

One word of wisdom from one vinegar user to another - Vinegar WILL dry out your hair and cause it to start breaking after prolonged use. Once a week I drench my head in conditioner and let it sit for 2 hours, then rinse. Makes it soft and shiny!

Best wishes to you all, I truly know what each and every one of you are going through! I will be posting back after the 2 weeks to share my results! I hope they're good ones!

Robi comb is a battery operated "bug zapper" type comb. Use it when your hair is dry in order not to zapper yourself. works like a charm. It lets you know when it has a bug so you can brush it out of the combs teeth. I use this in conjunction with Lice Ice, a homeopathic product. Put it on over night and do not cover. It hardens and drys out the bugs. When you wake in the morning you will see dead bugs on your pillow.

After trying every product out there I read to try soaking the hair in Listerine and cover for 2 hours and then rinse. Pour on white vinegar, cover for 2 more hours. All the lice were dead and the nits pulled off the hair shaft easily. The vinegar loosens the glue that holds the nit to the hair. Best and cheapest treatment out there!

My daughter and I just discovered we have lice! We have been itching for almost 3 weeks and I had no idea. I thought I had dry scalp. Then we saw the lice crawling around her hair!!! We are now soaking our hair in vinegar and will also soak Listerine. I hope it all works! Will post an update! Thank you for all of the advice!

I am trying the Listerine tonight, will do my daughter tomorrow. Fortunately for our my husband, he is bald! Who would have thought baldness could come in so handy?

I was SO clueless about lice that I didn't even know what they looked like. My daughter had a bug in her hair at the end of school in June, so I caught it in a Zip Loc and looked it up on the Internet. It didn't look terribly similar, so I called the husband part of our husband/wife pediatrician team. He said it probably wasn't lice and not to worry.


So we went on our merry way, with my daughter getting her hair cut at a salon and passing a lice check for sleepaway camp.

We picked her up from camp two weeks ago; she had bronchitis from a cold she had picked up from another girl in her tent. Then that night while doing a tick check, I found some bugs. They had to be lice. My husband looked them up on the Internet. They were.

When I took my daughter in to the wife part of our pediatrician team, I had her shortish hair pulled up and in a hat. She was being treated for her bronchitis and I mentioned the lice. The pediatrician went ballistic and said we weren't allowed in her building. She completely freaked out. I understand not being happy about it but if your kid is sick, well, come on! Lice is the pits, but it can't kill you. I felt terrible. My daughter feels like a leper. She cut her finger really badly at camp a few days ago and the doctor wouldn't even let her in the office, but came out to the parking lot to look at her finger.

I bought Nix at the pharmacy and it was poisonously worthless. We went to a local "professional lice removal expert" and thought we had them licked with a diversity of natural and green products. It turned out that I had lice/nits as well, and the professional person told me my daughter had to have had the lice before she went to camp. So the pediatrician was wrong, and no one else had caught it, and she had no symptoms. I still felt guilty.

Things were looking good until today, when my daughter, who had previously had one clean comb out and a couple of almost clean comb outs, had a minor explosion of lice activity. Apparently the hot spot for nits (eggs) is the top and crown of the head. The hot spot for the bugs is around the hairline on the sides (over the ears) and back (nape of neck) of the head.

We are doing everything we can to control this situation, and are petrified that anyone else will catch it from us. Our ability to be social has suffered as people think we're shunning them and I feel unable to tell anyone the truth, after what happened at the doctor's office. I'm so afraid someone we know will get it and be extremely mad at us for possibly giving it to them.

I feel like the stigma of lice is getting really out of hand. I totally understand doing all you can to eliminate it, as I'm doing, and taking precautions, but we can't completely stop our lives because of it. We need to go to work, our daughter needs to have a life, and I'm tired of hiding this like we have typhoid or something.

One thing I'm confused about is how much household items need to be cleaned. Half of the stuff I read says to do cursory cleaning, the real issue is the head hair and scalp, because lice and eggs can't survive long in the human body (as opposed to, say, fleas, which I've also had, many years ago). The other half say lice can live everywhere and you need to be massively cleaning everything.

I keep wondering if that's why the lice kind of re-exploded. Did we miss something or get sloppy in our cleaning cycle? Or did I miss an egg or two and they hatched? Because I've been combing like crazy (The Lice Terminator Comb is the best!).

I finally gave up and went to the drugstore to buy Listerine, Tea Tree oil (which I'm warning people to not put straight on scalps, as it can be toxic if absorbed through the skin undiluted), the shampoo mentioned, and several other items.

Tomorrow it's back to the white vinegar, nit combing and trying to beat this thing. I wish there was something to kill nits, because trying to find these tiny things is insane.

I'd like more people to write in about their experiences with Listerine. Has anyone actually beaten lice successfully without getting every nit out? Some of the folks here just talk about using the Listerine. I know the admins of this site say you still need to comb, but I was just wondering.

I hate the feeling that bugs are crawling through my hair and I don't know whether it's true or I'm imagining it. For months after I had gotten rid of the fleas, I still felt itchy; it was a phantom itch brought on by stress.

This is an update from July 27th-so we tried the Listerine and it did work! It killed all of the live lice. We poured two bottles of Listerine and one bottle of vinegar. We have done it for a few days, however I still feel stuff crawling around my hair. I think I have a few nits left. My daughter has a few nits too that I can't get rid off so we will do another vinegar treatment. We have also used the coconut shampoo, dandruff shampoo, and the oil. Good luck to everyone with this lice issue. It's very frustrating!

What I want to know is how long do you wait to retreat with Listerine and vinegar. It does kill the lice and it does help remove the nits. The problem is that we have very thick hair and can't possibly get all of the nits out. And lets face it my husband has no idea what he is doing and is not as meticulous as I am with my daughter's hair and my mom can't see tiny stuff.

This is getting frustrating. I have been fighting this since June. I have managed to rid my son of it. Some of these posts recommend treating every day. The process is 4 hours and then another hour of combing. I don't have time for that! Someone have any advice for a realistic treatment plan?


I am currently trying the Listerine treatment on my hair and my two children's hair. My youngest son keeps getting lice. This is first time trying the Listerine. Earlier tonight I found one quite large live louse in his hair.

My question is... does the Listerine kill the nits too (or just the live lice)?? I have very thick long hair and I know it may be very difficult for me to remove all of the nits from my own hair. So I really need to know if the Listerine also kills the nits. Thank you.


My girls had spent some time with their Nana this summer and came back with lice. (I'm pretty sure from a girl who lived nearby that they hung out with) by the time I found out they had it, they had been home for 2-3 weeks.

Well went out and bought 2 boxes of RID that comes with the spray and gel egg remover. I washed everything and followed directions and did EVERYTHING it said. 4 days later, and not even time for the second treatment my oldest was itching like crazy. I took the comb and pulled out tons of live bugs. (Do yourself a favor and purchase a quality lice comb with metal wonders.)

Well to the Internet I went and found the Listerene, denerex, vinegar coconut conditioner combo and set to work. If anyone does this be sure to have a huge chunk of time to give to this. 2 girls and it took me almost 6 hours from start to finish. BUT 3 days later and I have found no live bugs and only 3-4 eggs on my youngest. I'm going to spray down their hair tonight with the Listerene and continue washing their bedding and combing their hair but I feel pretty confident that we've got a handle on this!

Thanks to everyone who took the time to post their experiences. It saved me ALOT of money and stress!!

So what happened?! I'm dying to know! I hope it worked and you didn't have to shave your locks.

It most likely will be ongoing if you only treat every TWO weeks. Any eggs on the head will hatch in one week to 10 days. It is usually recommended to treat ONE week after the previous treatment.

Just found this site. Ok - after a month of washing, cleaning, various natural treatments I might try the Listerine and Vinegar when finished current treatment as we are still not clear.

Three year-old stepson caught them from his stepbrothers at his Mum's house - step siblings caught it from school. Three year-old stepson goes backwards and forwards between my Partner's family house, and his Mum's.

Blended families make things very complicated! It has taxed my brain and put us all under a lot of strain. Partner has family living at his house too - hence we live at my house when stepson not here and Partner and stepson spend time at both houses so all of us have had to be treated and both houses sorted (and I can't get Partner's family to do the cleaning thing properly!)

Lots of comings and goings. Stepson arrived for two weeks with a message to say he had head lice, been treated with Hedrin and to repeat it in 7 days - which we did.

A nurse I know recommended combing through with conditioner and a nit comb as well. I combed through my hair with conditioner and a nit comb over empty bath, just to check - thought there was nothing - then saw this seed sized thing wriggling in a drop of water on side of bath. Put my glasses on and saw it had legs. Also 3 or 4 black dot things on base of bath which I assume were eggs/nits.

Not so bad I thought, just one bug. Told partner and we did all three of us for the next few days with conditioner and combing - partner had loads of bugs and stepson, despite second treatment, had another five come out - and yes it is a nightmare doing anything like that with a three year old - he hates having his hair washed at the best of times - hates water on his head.
We are now using an empty spray bottle with water to damp his hair and spray stuff on.

Meanwhile my sister who had been through it - recommended the nitty gritty nit comb, so we got three of those - one for each house - (cost £30) and some massive bottles of conditioner - getting expensive. After a few days of that and washing everything, thought we must have done the trick.

Partner must have picked them up from stepson before we knew he had them, stepson must have picked them back up from Partner after his Hedrin treatment - and so on. So doing all three of us with conditioner and nitty gritty comb each day for almost a week.

But - just never get completely clear! In my case there is always one bug! Sometimes two or three, but never none! I have long, extremely thick hair and the combing just isn't working for me - can't get it across the scalp enough - takes about two hours, makes me cry and still don't feel I've covered my scalp afterwards or got through every hair. We both wear glasses and can't even see if they are dead or alive with glasses and a magnifying glass, and can't wear glasses or see anything for all the foam from the conditioner.

So when stepson went back - with nit comb and probably clear (his head the easiest to do), we spent the next week trying the olive oil and vinegar thing - including the brother at the farm - Partner goes there every day to work so he is backwards and forwards between the two houses all the time.

But still getting the odd one come out - and I don't know if the itching is psychological or not but there are two areas on my head where it feels like biting, so I'm pretty sure I'm still not clear.

Meanwhile did some research and found Neem oil is supposed to stop them breeding and feeding. Sent off for Neem kit of oil, shampoo and conditioner, and also sent off for Alfred Vogel 'Riddance' shampoo which also contains neem seed oil.

Unfortunately these took so long to arrive that we couldn't be clear before stepson came back for the week-end last week-end. We were going away for 2 nights as Partner's birthday and decided to forget the whole thing for two or three days and hope that at least my place would be 'clean' after being out of it for 2 days with chance for bugs to die. (Read in many places that the bugs only live 1 to 2 days off a human and therefore anything bagged up for a couple of days should be ok after that). We needed the break - I had got so stressed I was turning into a screaming banshee and Partner kept forgetting what to do which way round (clean areas and dirty areas) and dropping clothes on the floor. But felt SO guilty at staying in a holiday place for two days. (Although all bedding and towels are washed between visits) - but it was booked and didn't want to spoil the birthday treat for Partner or stepson.

Before stepson went back to Mum's on Sunday we put a few drops of Neem oil into a leave in, spray on, coconut conditioner, sprayed it on his hair and combed it out. He still seemed to be clear and the coconut and neem supposed to be a protection. So he went back clear.

Then started the three to four days of hair washing with the A Vogel Riddance shampoo. Am on third day now and still have creeping and itching. We have all got colds and I'm now feeling too tired to keep up the cleaning, bed changing and bagging schedule so have had to just give up on that for a few days in the hope that the Neem shampoo kills everything on us and the house was cleaned through the day I got back (except for the 'dirty room' where we leave everything after hair washing and changing clothes).

I just can't believe it will work as no-one else has mentioned it, and on the instructions it still seems to rely on combing.

My mission was to find something to kills the nits as well as the lice, so as not to have to rely on combing which won't work with me.

According to the other neem products, neem stops the lice breeding and feeding (ie they die and stop laying eggs - and also kills the unhatched eggs - and works as a preventative against getting them back. I hope the A Vogel shampoo does this. The other kit just smelled too awful to use. We have used olive oil, vinegar, coconut, all sorts - but the neem oil is just too foul!

The A Vogel neem 'Riddance' shampoo smells ok but is quite harsh - made my hands and face sting afterwards - but I'm keeping it up. Two more nights of hair washing and combing. Then repeat the shampooing in a week.

But last night one louse came out of partner's hair. No idea what came out of mine, too much foam and my eyes are tired.

But that seems to be the most frustrating thing - we never ever seem to be 100% free - there is always just one floating there. Our eyes aren't good enough to see anything in the hair and I am no good at sectioning and combing my hair and can't expect Partner to do it properly - he's a man! We have had so many rows over this - he thinks I'm being OCD - I am beginning to think he is a difficult slob! Yet I have always been quite relaxed about tidiness before now. He can't follow one simple instruction without doing the opposite! So I have had to relax and accept we can't keep all the bugs off clothes and furniture and need to rely on repeat treatments.

After the four days of Riddance shampoo I would like to do the listerine, vinegar, denorex thing - but think I will wait until the 7 day repeat riddance shampooing - as it would be nice to know which one worked - even though I hate waiting even longer!

Three questions:

1) Has anyone else had success with the A Vogel 'Riddance' shampoo, or the PureNeem lice kit of oil shampoo and conditioner?

2) Vinegar - confusing as to which kind. At first we were just using normal brown vinegar, then I read somewhere you should use white vinegar (which is spirit vinegar isn't it?) - the only white vinegar I could find was called 'distilled vinegar'. It seemed stronger and more stingy. We preferred the brown vinegar - quite nice really. Does it matter? Which vinegar is best? We are limited on shops here (rural area) - there is only brown vinegar or white distilled vinegar. I ignored wine vinegar and cider vinegar as one site said different amounts and instructions for these. Also do you use vinegar neat or diluted (we used 1/3 vinegar to 2/3 warm water) - neat vinegar sounds rather strong.

3) I had thought of blow drying for the heat effect (and so as not keep going to bed with wet hair!) - but won't it blow the critters around and get them landing on furniture etc?

Finally - all this is wrecking my hair! I have had large clumps coming out when combing, and the nitty gritty comb after A Vogel shampoo and without conditioner, is stripping it. Am seriously wondering whether to just get it cut short into a bob - but it is still VERY thick.

There must be SOMETHING that gets rid of the nits/eggs without having to rely on combing.

Best wishes to you all - it's horrible. And how come we have got to being in our 50's without ever having got them before? Because they don't do the nit nurse thing in schools any more. Shame on the government - for all the ridiculous health and safety things, there is no nitty nora going round schools inspecting and treating. Other people with children have told me this is a recurring thing until they leave school! Especially in primary schools. So we need something to zap em with quick each time - that works. Sounds like many people have had success with Listerine and Denorex. As for all the essential oils - I'm not so sure they work - we've had tea tree, lavendar and rosemary in the vinegar and olive oil each time and it didn't work. And tea tree is too strong - both in terms of smell and being bad for you if absorbed. Go light on it if you use it - a couple of drops in the rinsing solution. Or just don't bother - it doesn't work.

I've tried Listerine, garlic, alcohol, Rid, some Argentine lice treatment (I contracted the lice in Argentina) Denorex with Salicylic Acid (which was a mistake, bc you're supposed to use the one with coal tar), Blue Magic petroleum, and --always -- a metal comb. I also spray on Lice Shield and tea tree oil. The comb has helped the most, and the Argentine lice treatment was great, I wish they had it here... Alcohol has also been good. BUT my problem persists and persists and it's mutating to something far worse -- I found yesterday that my eye lashes and eyebrows harbored eggs.

You think you'd see the bugs crawling there, but no. Some were eggs that had fallen from my hair, and some were definitely planted at the roots. I am now trying a coal tar 3% shampoo I found at CVS... I guess I'll see.

Always tie your hair up. Can't emphasize that enough. And be careful with your bed and clothing... jackets, etc.

Update: Daily use of 3% coal tar for two weeks has eliminated my lice. I leave it in for a half hour every day. This might be excessive, but it's done the trick. I got a doctor to check today. I also pre-rinse with Coca cola every day (dissolves nit glue) and afterwards blow-dry my hair, tie my hair in a bun, and spray liberally with Lice Shield to which I have added tea tree oil. I hope this helps people. I've had it for over three months but I think it's finally over.

Hi, I am a registered nurse and I have also worked in a school. My 12 year old niece got head lice 2 weeks ago. Head lice are running rampant in her school. My sister used RID 2 weeks ago. They came back.

I found this website. Well, let me tell you...WOW. I treated my niece with Regular Listerine-$5.79, distilled white vinegar-$2.29, 2 shower caps-$1.98 and Suave Coconut Shampoo and Conditioner-$2.00. The total cost was $11.00 (the cost of RID, NIX, other lice treatments: $25.00 and up). The process takes about 6 hours. It is so worth it. This is what we did:

1. Saturate dry hair with Listerine. We used a spray bottle. Cover with shower cap. Leave on for exactly 2 hours. Throw shower cap away. (Listerine contains essential oils that smother lice and kills them) ***have child/adult infested cover eyes to prevent Listerine from getting into eyes***

2. Rinse then saturate hair with vinegar. We used a spray bottle. Cover with 2nd shower cap. Leave on for exactly 2 hours. Throw shower cap away. (Vinegar loosens the cement of the eggs/nits that are attached to the hair shaft) ***have child/adult infested cover eyes to prevent vinegar from getting into eyes***

3. Rinse then saturate hair with coconut conditioner. Massage into hair and scalp. Leave on for 15 minutes then take a Lice comb and start combing hair. The comb will become caked with conditioner. Rinse with hot water and wipe off with a towel/paper towel. I had a cup of boiling hot water that I used to rinse the lice comb. Comb hair in sections. This process takes can take anywhere from 1-2 hours depending on length of hair. (Coconut conditioner contains coconut oil that also helps kill lice and helps in the aid of removing the eggs/nits)

4. Rinse hair thoroughly and blow dry or air dry.

While waiting during those 2 hour steps. Wash and dry bedding on high heat. Wash and dry clothing/coats/hats on high heat. Vacuum all furniture thoroughly. Watch a movie. Play a game. After treatment is complete. Boil nit comb in water for 20 minutes

Continue using coconut shampoo and conditioner for as long as you like. Also, continue combing hair with nit comb at least 2 times a day to remove any stranded eggs/nits or dead lice left behind.

If re-infestation occurs, do process again.

Educate children about not sharing clothing/hats/hair accessories. Also, instruct children to not hug other children during a lice outbreak. Lice cannot jump or fly. They must have direct contact with hair. That is why girls get lice more than boys. Girls like to do each others hair and share their clothes and hair accessories. Boys not so much. Girls also like to hug each other. Boys not so much. Lice need scalp blood to survive. They can live up to 48 hours without blood or without being on a strand of hair. Adults move very fast. Have girls with long hair wear braids during a lice outbreak.

In doing my research, lice have become resistant to the main toxic chemical in RID, NIX and other over the counter lice treatments. The oils in Listerine and the coconut conditioner smothers the lice which kills them and also can penetrate the shell of the eggs/nits.

Please remember that getting lice is not a disease it is a pesty nuisance.

Good luck.

I have been battling head lice for months, my daughters brought it home and gave it to me, how embarrassing, whats even more embarrassing is admitting it, but what can you do, I don't wish to pass this to anyone! We have all been to the doctor and they prescribe the treatments and again in a week, they DO NOT work.

I can't believe that a doctor would prescribe something that repeatedly fails. Each time I discover the lice again I research the internet and something I haven't tried is Listerine we all have our heads saturated in it with plastic bags tied tightly around our heads, next will be the white vinegar treatment and the blow dried followed by the flat iron and coconut oil after that plaster the head with gel then hairspray it.

I really have faith in this treatment, although throughout numerous failed attempts with the prescription treatments I have noticed that coconut oil does help because the bugs cant latch on. Heat from the blow drier and flat irons fry the bugs and eggs but it only takes 1 of those annoying things and you're back to the start. I need to make sure that the girls heads are greased up plastered down with gel and sprayed with hairspray so they are not re-infested. I really do believe that the Listerine will work wish me luck and best of luck to all of you i will post an update to let you know god bless.

Did you ever get rid of your lice? How? I have the same problem.... Listerine, coal tar, nothing seems to work...

My daughter had been telling me her head was itchy for a couple of days but I thought nothing of it because she has a naturally itchy scalp. Boy, was I wrong. Wouldn't you know it the Friday before school started she took a shower and there was a bug in the drain and two fell out while she was coming her hair. She came running to me saying she had lice, but I thought it was just gnats from the humidity.

The next day, my daughter and I had our heads together when she pulled away and said that I had a bug in my hair. We caught it and put it in a bag, looked it up, and our lives were forever changed.

Here is what you MUST do to get rid of lice:

a) Assume all household members have it. We went wrong there. We treated my daughter with NIX because we knew she had it and myself because of long hair. We never thought my son would have it too.
b) Treat again in a week with NIX or RID to make sure you get everything. TREAT ALL FAMILY MEMBERS AGAIN.
c) Vacuum all mattresses, couches, chair and floors every day for two weeks.
d) Wash all clothes after they are worn during a lice infestation.
e) Put all sheets and bedding in the dryer every day on high heat for 40 min.
f) This is how we treated for lice and it worked:
1. Every day spray brown Listerine (with a spray bottle) on head and make sure all strands are saturated. Wrap with saran wrap. This kills all live lice. Leave on for two hours.
2. Next, spray white vinegar on hair to loosen all nits. Wrap with saran wrap. Leave on for two hours.
3. Put Denorex (3% Coal Tar) on hair for 30 min. Wrap with saran wrap.
4. Wash hair completely out and cover hair completely with Suave Naturals Coconut Conditioner. Leave this on while you nitpick then wash it out at the end.
5. Nitpick the hair with a comb. I recommend the LiceMeister comb. It grips the hair very well and gets all nits and bugs. If long hair, pin up into sections and do one section at a time. Keep a bin or hot water nearby and after every swipe clean it in the bin. After every few swipes, put the comb in a little bowl of alcohol.

This may seem excessive to do every day, but it must be done. Lastly, make sure you do not make the mistakes we did.


I hope our mistakes help you. Good luck!

So, I am a cosmetologist. I have battled head lice with my own kids. But in all the times I have treated it, I have found one important thing-When you open the box of treatment, take the little comb out of the box, and put it in the trash. They are useless at combing nits out!! The best thing is TIME!!!

It's best to sit outside in the natural light to see best. Have two clips. One to section all the hair off and one to clip the hair over that's been picked through. Yes, picked through. You section hair into very small sections at a time and use your fingertips to grab on and pull the nit all the way off from root to end. Repeat all over the head, several times. This is after the treatment is done.

The treatments say they kill lice and eggs, but usually only live bugs and some nits. If even one live nit is left in the hair, re-infestation will occur. So, getting every last nit out is very important!! And contrary to popular belief, it does not mean you are dirty when you get lice!! It's actually the very opposite. Lice love clean hair because the eggs can stick better to the hair shaft. If your hair is dirty and oily, the eggs are more apt to slide right off. Hope this is useful!!

My son has been scratching his head for the past two days. I just checked his head a few hours ago after we got home from church, and found that he has head lice. I panicked because we have been through this before and he was eat up.

I continued to scavenge through his head and found he wasn't infested too bad. I soaked his head in listerine picked the dead lice and live lice out of his scalp put a cap on his head and sent him to bed. I will reapeat this process in the morning.and pray that it works. if not I'm shaving his head.

Just wanted to post a THANK YOU to all the previous posts above and the other posts listed in other threads on this site with regards to lice. I am happy to report that we are lice and nit FREE!! For anyone who may read my posting below, I used two methods to get rid of lice in our home.

METHOD 1 (Drug store version of Rid and drug store metal combs used on my daughter, but I combed through her hair)

My daughter is in kindergarten and there was a notice that went home that lice was in the classroom. Sure enough, she come home with it one day. One thing to note was that I only found 1 insect upon first inspection. I went that day and purchased the pharmacy brand of Rid and bought the metal combs that were sold separately. I used the shampoo according to package directions and found one additional dead lice bug as I combed through her hair. She sat with my Ipad for 1.5 hours while I meticulously combed through each section of her hair. When combing, I sectioned a piece and combed it several times and checked each strand of hair. I didn't tie off each section. I worked from the bottom to the top and re-combed the hairs on the bottom while I combed each section above.

I did use an elastic to separate uncombed hair from combed hair. (My daughter has hair that runs down the length of her back). The first night, I found 30 nits and I pulled them out by hand by scraping my nail along the shaft of the hair and pulling the nit off. I placed each one on a tissue and when it was done, I carefully rolled the tissue into a bag, sealed it and threw it away. The second night, I combed her hair again doing the same thing as the previous night and found less nits. I think it was 15 nits.

Also, instead of picking the nits out, I used scissors to cut the hair strand out completely. Every night after this, I always cut the nit out. By the fourth night, I found one nit. On days 5-7, I combed her hair but it did not take as long because I felt pretty confident I got all the nits. Day 8, I did the required second shampoo. When I combed through her hair, I found two dead nymphs, but no nits. So for the next week, I combed meticulously again, but found no more nits.

It has been 1 month since I first found the lice bug and have not found any since. Before my daughter goes to school each day, I put her hair in a ponytail or a braid and spritz her hair with a mixture of 1 cup water and 10 drops of tea tree oil (purchased from the drug store). So, I found the OTC type of lice removal to work for my daughter.

METHOD 2 (Listerine and Nit Free Terminator Comb on myself with no one to check my hair)

The reason for Method 2 was because I was looking in the mirror one morning 2 weeks ago, and feeling like my head was itchy, I found a nit on of the front strands of my head. I had my husband check my hair while I was going through the lice ordeal with my daughter, and he found nothing. Then he left for 2 weeks on business and when I found the nit, I had no one to check my hair!!! The reason I didn't trust the OTC brand and comb was because I didn't have someone to comb meticulously through my hair as I did for my daughter.

I felt that at least with my daughter, if the OTC didn't work (as many people have said they didn't always work), I would at least catch the nits. I liked the Listerine method because I was not limited to two washings. I could use it as many times as I felt I needed to in order to kill the live lice. The first night, I sectioned my hair and sprayed each section with Listerine (original brand - and I dye my hair dark brown and found no effects on the dye or my grays - my hair did not turn yellow). I started from the bottom and moved my way to the top.

I wrapped an old towel around my neck to catch any drips. I let my hair sit for two hours in a shower cap (I, too have long hair. It runs down past my shoulders). After two hours, I didn't do rinse my hair with vinegar as many previous posts did. It was 1am by this point and I didn't want to wait two hours for vinegar (and I hadn't purchased any Selsun Blue). I rinsed my hair with water and used the drug store comb to comb out 4 nits. I found no lice bugs. I spent 1 hour combing sections of my hair (bottom to top). During my two hour wait time, I found a comb called the Nit Free Terminator on Amazon. Given the reviews 152/162 giving it 4+ stars, I ordered it for next day delivery. The next night, I did the Listerine treatment again, but this time I used the Nit Free Terminator comb.

I found no lice, but the comb found 18 nits in my hair!!! So I no longer use the drug store metal combs on myself, I only use the Nit Free comb. I combed my hair the next day, and found 2 nits and on the third, I found 1. Each night thereafter, I combed, and found no nits. One week later, I washed again with Listerine, let it sit overnight in my shower cap. I woke up, washed my hair and combed and found nothing.

MY CONCLUSIONS AND FEELINGS ABOUT IT ALL: Regardless of what method you use to kill the lice, I think the comb you use is most important to remove the nits. I found both the OTC and Listerine method worked to kill lice. BUT, don't waste your money on the drug store combs. GET THE NIT FREE TERMINATOR COMB!!! Especially if you have no one to check your hair! If you can't find it locally, check online. I use this comb on all my kids now to periodically check their hair.

WHY I LIKE THE COMB: It is constructed so much better than the comb you get at the drug store. The tines are long and have micro-dents along them. The tines also butt up against each other. If you look at the drug store combs, there are small spaces between each tine. When I comb my hair, the nits sit right on top of the comb in plain view. It even picks up the tiniest pieces of dandruff I didn't know I had (eww, I know, but this is just to illustrate how the comb can pick up things smaller than nits!). I just use the debris brush that came with the drug store comb to clean out the Nit Free comb. I think you could probably use a Q-Tip to clean it out if you don't have a small debris brush. When a loose hair gets caught between the tines, you have to pull the hair out to remove it. The hair strand will not fall out because the tines are so close together. Given the proximity of the tines, I feel much more secure that the nits are being removed, especially because I didn't have a pair of eyes looking at each strand of hair.

PS. As long as I found nits, I was tossing all bedding and pillows of each person affected into the dryer on high for 30 minutes each day. I also removed all stuffed animals, soft toys, toys with hair, and extra pillows in the bedroom and common living areas for 3 weeks. I vacuumed all carpeted areas and floors, as well as all the sofas and the back cushions. I did not toss any brushes out. I washed them in the dishwasher. I also periodically flat-ironed my hair (I did not do this to my daughter). My daughter has all of her toys back and we are all still lice/nit free.

Good luck!

Got lice while working at a summer camp. REALLY bad infestation. I have super long thick curly hair. Use Listerine treatment put it in for two hours, then the Denorex for 30 minutes, then coconut conditioner. The dead lice were falling out of my head. It was disgusting but I'm so glad they are out. Still going to do this for at least 10 days every night. I am way to old for this :P

Here are the main facts:

1. Lice are killed by Listerine but eggs are not.

You kill the lice, eggs will hatch: more lice.

2. Vinegar will dissolve the cement and shells of the eggs, like it will a hen's egg.

3. Nearly all lice, young and old, and even eggs can be combed out by a fine toothed metal comb. A cheap pet store dog flea comb is often a good choice.

So: 1. Comb out everything you can.
2. Coat with Listerine to kill everything you can.
3. Then coat with vinegar to loosen and destroy eggs.
4. Comb out everything you can.

Then repeat.

I do my kids after school. They get re-infested by kids at school whose parents don't understand proper treatment ( or don't care? ).

Every day. My kids are clean but re-infestation can happen any time.

You comb out a couple of adult lice from a clean kid's hair you know they didn't grow there - they were acquired during the day.

That's it. Simple. Comb, Listerine, Vinegar, Comb, Listerine, Vinegar..

I'm not sure of the action of Listerine. Lice, like flies, breath through holes in their sides. Almost any greasy or oily stuff will clog the holes and cause them to be DORMANT. NOT DEAD.

You can revive 'dead' flies that 'drowned' in beer suds. Why? Because when they dry out the holes are clear and respiration (breathing) begins again.

Somewhere I've read it takes a couple of hours of 'clogging' before such creatures die.

So that would mean hours of leaving stuff on the hair. As is often suggested.

BUT WHY? Comb! Comb! Comb! They will die quickly once removed. They will not live in clothing or materials.

Get a good comb and comb them out. Then Vinegar to loosen eggs. Then comb.

You WILL win. Easily.


Just combing would win. Everything that hatches is combed out: result? Nothing left.


Thanks for the Listerine tip!!!!!!! xoxoxoxoxoxox what can I say, 5 kids, but the hardest bit is my thick, wooly hair, and it is very hard to do my hair - so thanks

I am trying the Listerine remedy thanks to a lady at walmart!! She saved me some money and looks like it is going to work! :D She told me not to use the scented but the antiseptic one so here I am... Hopefully it will work because now my head is itchy as hell just thinking about it... UGH...

I have tried Rid and Nix but still feel itchy. Tried olive oil and vinegar then mayo but only two hour treatments. I have combed and combed and don't find nits. I hate to ask family to check my hair because it's tedious. I see nothing but am trying Listerine then vinegar to be sure lice is gone. I think I got it when getting a haircut before Thanksgiving. Makes you paranoid. Hope this Listerine treatment works!

I have been fed up and at my wits end with lice. I have 2 girls ages 4 and 6. My youngest brought head lice home from school about 6 months ago and gave it to my oldest. I managed to avoid it until recently. We have used every otc lice product there is to no avail..... I started researching alternative medicines and home remedies to get rid of lice and came across the Listerine option, I wanted to use it on myself first to make sure it was safe for my girls.

All of us have long and thick hair and mine is very naturally curly. I bought the mint kind (because I had read somewhere that the lice do not like mint), came home and drenched my hair in it, I put a shower cap on and left it be for 1 hour (due to time restrictions), during the hour I could feel the itching just stop, I then rinsed it out (not shampooing) and used Suave Coconut conditioner, right there in the shower I combed my hair with a fine toothed comb.

I combed it until all the conditioner was out. I them rinsed the left over out, I towel tried my hair and have had very minimal itching since. I will repeat this process again in 2 days and will do it every other day until I have no more itching. I also will be treating both my girls with the Listerine! Thank you so much for your advice

Did you have to use the nit comb in the morning? I get nits of my daughter and my hair comes out in clumps when I use the comb... too scared to use it again. Does anything work without using the comb? Thanks

People's Pharmacy response: We don't know of any remedies that kill nits as well as lice, so you either have to comb/pick out the nits, or you have to repeat the treatment every five or six days for several cycles.

I swear by the Listerine/Vinegar method!!!! We got hit hard with a lice infestation a while back and were horrified. After an unsuccessful bout with RID, I was told by a family member about the Listerine method and I'm here to tell you it works! The Listerine kills the bugs and the vinegar loosens the glue between the nits and the hair shaft.

* Original Listerine (largest bottle you can find)
* White Vinegar (very large bottle)
* Saran Wrap
* Disposable plastic shower caps (about 10)
* Good metal nit comb (don't use the plastic ones; they're junk)
* Hot water
* Rubbing Alcohol
* Paper towels

Steps (Note: While you're waiting for the time to be up in steps 3 & 5, do all your house and linen cleaning)

1. Drench hair with Listerine making sure to rub it into scalp and getting every piece of hair and area on head
2. Squeeze out enough so it's not running down your face.
3. Pile hair on top of head if long, wrap in saran wrap and then cover securely with plastic shower cap. Leave on for at least 4 hours or ideally, sleep overnight with it on.
4. Remove cap and saran wrap and discard. Do NOT use again!
5. Immediately drench hair thoroughly with vinegar. Squeeze out excess, wrap head in saran and cover with NEW shower cap. Leave on for 2 hours.
6. Remove cap and saran wrap and discard. Do NOT use again!
7. Wash and condition your hair. Towel dry but keep hair wet as it's easier to comb through (immediately wash towel when done)
8. Comb, comb, comb with lice comb. After each swipe through hair be sure to rinse comb in bowl of HOT water, wipe comb on paper towels and clean nits out that get stuck in the comb. Ideally you want to keep combing until comb comes clean.


* Lice leave a scent behind that lasts for 7 - 10 days and it attracts other lice. SOOOOOO.....
* Be sure to comb twice a day for at least a week, preferably two in order to get any nits you may have missed. Do this even if your combing is coming out clean.
* Repeat Listerine/Vinegar treatment every 3-4 days for a week or two to kill any lice that may have hatched due to missed nits or re-infestation.
* Wear button down shirts during combing and immediately remove, wash and dry them when done.
* Boil all tools in hot water and/or soak in rubbing alcohol for 1/2 hour when done with them
* Keep stripping and washing your bedding and towels daily throughout the week or two process
* Use a daily preventative spray on hair

It's a pain but so worth it. Good luck!

I have been very frustrated by these things until I read about Listerine and then a vinegar wash. It is the first time that I feel like we may be onto something. The vinegar wash helps to lessen the glue effect of the nits. I also used a little olive oil and tea tree oil on the hair overnight. I will never use those pesticides again on my child but initially you feel so, so desperate. Thank you for sharing your knowledge without charging me to find out what you do. We really appreciate it.

I soaked first in Listerine (2.5 hours) both me and my daughter although I don't believe I have it according to my inspector (my poor husband). Used plastic wrap and caps.

Soaked with vinegar for 20 minutes
Rinsed repeatedly and used metal nit comb at same time.
Use a little tea tree oil with olive oil in hair over night.
Picked out nits first night then in morning, all but two nits were stuck that I found.
I did find a 1/4 inch bug in cap but I thought there is no way that is what it is???? Maybe so because we saw one in the bath also.

This is great information to share in orphanages b/c we have had trouble in the past after mission trips. Hope we are really done with this. OH, the whole family also layer hands and prayed over my daughter - sure that couldn't hurt right!

Me and my child!! and the rest of the family!

I can't wait to try this!!! We discovered that my 2 kids and I had lice about two weeks ago. I used QuitNits and it did work, but for three people at 16.00 a pop it was expensive. I nitpicked my daughter's and my hair everyday for a week, used a lice preventative shampoo and spray, and my son did the same (he refused to let me touch his head). I was combing through her hair today and found more nits, and then I found 1 big live louse!!!! That is so frustrating!!!!! We can't afford to buy more expensive treatments, soooo... gonna spend the weekend (again) treating heads. This time I'm going to use the Listerine and vinegar trick. Here's to hoping it works!!! I haven't found any nits or live ones on my head, but I think I'd rather be safe than sorry! wish me luck.

We too have used Listerine. I have 5 children, my oldest 2 brought head lice home about 4 months ago (we think from trying on hats in a store). I know it started with them b/c the lice were full stage and there were lots of them. All the kids got it and so did I. I soak everyone hair with Listerine for 2 hrs. Rinsed. Soaked everyone again with white vinegar for 1 hr. Washed with a strong dandruff shampoo, and conditioned with coconut conditioner (suave) with some tea tree oil mixed in. I combed, combed, combed and combed again. Washed everyone’s sheets and sprayed sofas/car seats with the Lice spray from Walmart. The next night I put real mayo in everyone’s hair over night. Washed with the Dandruff shampoo in the morning and used the conditioner/tea tree oil again. Combed, combed, and combed some more. 2 days later we did the mayo again, washed with regular shampoo, continued to use the “special” conditioner for about another 2 wks.

We haven’t seen anymore lice, until another round just started going around school. I know it’s a different group than before b/c my oldest DD doesn’t have any and it started in my younger DD’s class and she has the most. Thankfully the school sent out a letter so we have been able to catch it early on. I just did the vinegar and mayo this time as opposed to the rest since we caught it so early.

Home remedies do work, you just have to keep at them and comb, comb, comb, comb with the nit comb (Walgreens has an excellent package with 2 combs, a magnifying glass and little brush). I rinse the comb after every comb through, over a white bowl so I can see what I’m getting. This way I can tell when it is becoming less and less. You can easily see the lice, nits and eggs, as well as the difference between dandruff.

So I'm pretty sure I have lice. My head doesn't itch like crazy but I've found 3-4 bugs in my hair along with some nits. So now I'm sitting here with Listerine on my head :/ I hope this works! Thanks for all these great tips :)

Saturated your hair in Listerine "original amber colored" and cover with shower cap for 2 hours. Rinse thoroughly then saturated in white vinegar for 2 hours, cover with shower cap. Once the 2 hours is over comb hair with a flea comb (works better than lice combs).

After thoroughly combing hair wash vigorously with Denorex extra strength shampoo, twice. Blow dry hair and wear up if possible. You can wash all your clothes and linen with vinegar and Listerine and bleach whatever you can, all washed in HOT water. Dry on high. We've used this remedy many times and has always been affective and isn't chemically harmful.

I discovered this site last year when my daughter had lice, and put her under a shower cap with original Listerine. I then combed out several dead lice. I can't remember if/when I did followup combing, but the mistake I made was not treating the whole family at the same time. We wound up batting it around all summer, and finally got rid of it when I got us on the same schedule.

I'm the problem child because of my thick curly hair that I don't normally comb (I scrunch). I finally went out to the lice ladies in Brooklyn who are notorious lice-killers. They gave me the Nisska comb which is great -- it's not even horrible on my hair which breaks and falls out easily.

But what I learned from them is that all you need to comb out is Pantene conditioner. The vinegar, which my family agrees is the gross part, isn't necessary. In fact, all the lice ladies use is Pantene and baking soda, which stuns the lice long enough to comb them out. They recommend repeating that process every day until all is clear.

I'm still a big fan of hitting them with a Listerine bang at first discovery. I just combed 20-30 bugs out of my daughter's hair and am sitting here with my Listerine cap on. My son had about 3 bugs, we'll see what my husband and I have.

BUT HERE"S MY QUESTION: Should I abandon the Listerine after this first treatment and just do Pantene/baking soda? If so, what interval of days? Or should I wait five days and do one more Listerine blast?

Is 5 days the key number for hatching eggs?

My problem is that I'm getting my hair cut and colored before a college reunion Memorial Day weekend and want to be finished by then!


WOW! The listerine REALLY WORKED! (redheads& blondes MUST I REPEAT MUST USE THE YELLOW LISTERINE!) thanks so much!! Really worked!

It's been over two months since I discovered our infestation. My three children and I all contracted lice. but my husband did not - he swears it is because he uses dandruff shampoo every day.

Anyway, my advice to all is DO NOT WASTE YOUR $ ON STORE-BOUGHT REMEDIES! In the beginning. I figured that store bought would be quicker and more effective than a home remedy...and over a $100 later, here we still are.

Right now my daughter and I are sitting with a vinegar and a shower caps on our heads and the plan was to douse with olive oil after this, but I think Im going to head to to store and get listerine and coconut conditioner.

I've already had both of my boy's hair cut as short as you could go without buzzing it - and let me tell you how tragic that was for my oldest who had beautiful curly hair!

I am so over these bugs!!! I've washed everything in the house 3x's - including the 50 or so stuffed animals! My daughter and I both have long hair and mine is very thick and wavy. Part of the problem is that I have no one to comb mine.

My husband travels and when he was here, like some others have said...well, he just isn't very efficient. So, best bet sound like Listerine treatment. Good luck to me and good luck to all of you!!

My 8 year old girls went to their grandparents last week, and their first night there, it was discovered they had lice. Apparently, pretty severe. Upon inspecting me, my husband announced that I did too. We immediately bought the name brand killing shampoo, and my in laws did the same. Three days later, mt little ones came home..... And so did their little louse friends. I had no lice. The difference is that I had found this site, and began treating myself with Listerine daily starting on day two. I also sprayed Listerine on all my carpets, mattresses, furniture, and anything I could not wash. I am now treating my kids with Listerine also.

Listerine has been an answer to prayers!

My daughter has been battling with head lice on and off for some time. I did everything and they go away and come, so I did the mayo thing and bugs are dead but a lot of nits. So I had to start cutting them off. Did the Listerine and then the vinegar hoping this cycle will finally end.

First, who are all these people who keep saying "did it work?!" There are so many answers to that question here, and people keep asking anyway. Makes no sense.

Second, I'd like to hear more from people for whom this didn't work.

I'm frustrated because last time we had it, the doctor prescribed ulesfia, which worked, but even with my insurance was $55 per bottle, and we were going to need a minimum of 6 bottles for two treatments for all our hair.

This time he prescribed malathion, which he said was better and is only $10 per with our insurance, but it's not working as well. I just finished the treatment (plan to do my girls in the morning), combed my hair out completely, and am still itchy (not finding live ones, but it's hard to tell when I have to do my own hair).

Since it seems Ulesfia and Listerine share some ingredients, I'm going to give the listerine a try, plus the vinegar and denorex and combing every day. If that doesn't work, I'll try cetaphil (google it), and if that doesn't work, I'll have to splurge for the ulesfia (why does it have to be so expensive?!).

I've never used listerine but I have used the 91% proof alcohol from wal-mart and it works wonders to..I've put it in a spray bottle and would do their heads 3x's a day and the lice was gone in just a few days....hopefully I won't have that problem no more but if I do I will try the Listerine and see how it does.

My daughter came home from college with the worst case of head lice. We used the Listerine, vinegar, selsum blue shampoo treatment and they fell out of her hair like dandruff. I was amazed by this. We figured out that they came from her work where she used the phone which is shared by many. So thanks for the treatment and anyone using this site, listen to what it says, use this treatment, it works, it's cheap and RID is a waste of time...

my daughter god infected with the lice through her cousin almost a month ago..... I didn't realise it, by the time I reacted it was badly infected..... now even I am infected with these its and lice......using comb for long time has really damaged my scalp to an extend that its bleeding and heavily infected... I am on high dosage of antibiotic..... can I still use this Listerine and vinegar...... please help I am really messed up!!!!

My sister's step children always seemed to return from their mother's with lice, which then was spread to her own children. Tired of the constant expense of lice treatments and fearing that the constant use of it would damage the childrens' hair, she asked the pharmacist at a local drug store for alternatives. He suggested the mouthwash treatment, and so far, it seems to be working!

I live alone. Getting rid of head lice has been difficult. Mix, Rid ruined my hair. I've lost some hair near my temples (not sure if that is related). The lice like to hang out in the nape of my neck. After ruining my hair, I recently tried Lice MD but living alone makes the combing difficult.

I've only ever saw one adult lice in my hair, (well that's not true, in the shower I've pulled out something ICKKKKK ICKKKKK and screamed, before I knew for sure it was lice) ... and two dead on the floor (they live, what, 30 days in the hair if not treated?). But I do see a lot of "seeds" all around, which I believe might be dried up nymphs or (lol) the head of an adult louse? Or a dried up one? Of all things I also had body lice so it could have been "them". I did have a lice check back in April and she said "no, but your hair is dusty" ... dusty?? It wasn't until recently I realized my body lice was not just body lice, but also head lice.

Last night- in a hopeless state, (I cannot get ANYTHING done with bugs in my hair, the itch, the sensation) .... but I came across this page, and exhausted as I was I said "THAT's IT!" I had just bought that Listerine (for myself, actually) and had white vinegar. Seems everyone has a different method so I just "winged" it. I filled an old hairspray bottle with the Listerine and sprayed and sprayed on my hair. Not sure I "soaked" it, will do so tonight. and secured my hair in place and waited two hours. Maybe this stings to some people, but I felt that it made my head feel WONDERFUL.

During the "process" the itch completely went away. Then I poured some white vinegar over my head, wrapped it, and waited another hour. Then I rinsed it all out. I didn't shampoo until this morning. But last night, not a nibble or movement until this morning, there were two small sensations. I have the spray bottle nearby and "treat" as needed. (I'm unemployed now and if I don't have plans for the day and am inside, alone , I don't care how I look. I lost a lot of pride in my looks throughout all this because this drove me SOOO crazy it was a factor in leaving my job recently (not the only reason).

Judging by the population being reduced A LOT!, I am confident this will work.
I know people that read this say that people like me never post back their success. Well I'll leave this page up on my browser and hope to post back. I read somewhere, not sure if this page, that you have to treat for 8 days because of the life cycle of the lice. I don't mind doing that at all. I'm not calling it a day now, I've been through too much. I need to move on from isolating myself, becoming depressed about it and being very impatient.

Hope this gives someone a little hope!

I shockingly discovered the creatures lurking in my daughter’s hair on Monday night. They were huge! They must have been cultivating in her lioness hair (she has extremely thick hair) for at least a week and I did not notice.
Here is what I did:

1. Sprayed her hair with Listerine and wrapped in cling wrap, left to sit on her hair for 2 hours. Washed out with Coconut shampoo, followed by coconut conditioner and blow dried.

2. Applied "Licefreee" spray (it is non-toxic), wrapped in cling wrap and left it to sit for 45 minutes. Washed out with Coconut shampoo, followed by coconut conditioner, with conditioner on her hair, took lice comb and combed her hair for about five minutes from all sides and angles, rinsed out and blow dried.

3. Sprayed with vinegar, wrapped her head in cling wrap and left it to sit on her hair for two hours. Washed out with Coconut shampoo, followed by coconut conditioner and blow dried.

4. Tied her hair and in sections went hair by hair to remove any remaining nits by hand...for five hours!!!

The good thing is that all the live lice were gone completely, but the nits stuck around, most of them dead, but the shell does not come off unless you manually pick them off the hair strand. Since I am unsure which ones are live and which dead, I am going through her hair every day for a week now to try to get rid of all I find.

It has been a week so I applied “Licefreee” spray on her head again, wrapped in cling wrap for 35 minutes and will go through each hair strand again to make sure everything is absolutely and completely gone.


I have read about this amazing listerine remedy for lice (which have never tried before due to being a skeptic over it.) But my daughter is now 4 and she JUST started struggling with lice because she is now in preschool. Ugh it is such a frustration to see how the expensive store "remedies" never worked.

She kept getting sent from her school unable to return due to the continuous lices and nits. What's worst is that now I have lice!! ewwww!!! Happy to say we just did the listerine remedy like literally..RIGHT NOW hahaha we just got out of the bathroom from soakin her and my hair. We are watching t.v and she is eating a pb and j sandwich with 3 bags on her hair lol wish us luck!!

Hi I have Lice I picked them out of my head. My parents don't seem to care and itching drives me insane. I will try listerine tomorow night thx

Carol!!!! Your comments worked absolutely wonderfully (for me, if I had a reason or the chance to fight off those nasty little Lice-like creatures, in my own hair)...I have been blessed, thankfully, but, I have been attacked by bed-bugs on my Butt, so, go figure...God bless, and, yes, I'm sure, sweet-heart, your comments have made the day of someone, somewhere, out there!! Thanks, and take care!!!


My child picked up lice last year from his elementary school. I had never come across lice before so I was really freaked out. I did like everyone else and ran to the drug store and bought the over the counter stuff. I tried that twice and both attempts were not even remotely successful. Not to mention the stuff is highly toxic.

Then I came across a site which mentioned Listerine (gold). I thought "what the heck...let me see what that stuff does."

While combing my sons hair I removed a small adult so I put it in a cap from a small container with some Listerine. Within a few minutes it was deader than a door nail. With that result I soaked my sons head (poured it on..making sure to keep it out of his eyes though!) with Listerine. Put a shower cap on and let him soak for 2 hrs. Then I combed...and combed with a metal comb....not the cheapo plastic ones. I repeated tha process every other night....amongst the millions of loads of laundry I was doing.

hey does listerine increase hairfall or doesnt it help get rid of dandruff.....plzzz reply

Wow this actually works. I tried the Nix brand 2 days ago and actually found live bugs 2 days later. I applied Listerine and let it soak under a shower cap for 2 hours. When I pulled off the cap there were 5 bugs in the cap. I then rinsed out the hair and found 12 more in the bathtub. Now I am finishing it off with vinegar the same way.

This is what you need: Listerine original (yellow), disposable shower caps, Pantene conditioner with green top, baking soda, white vinegar, spray bottle, a really good lice comb, a natural lice shampoo (no chemical nonsense) and a roll of paper towels. Magnifying glass could come in handy too. A LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER WITH A scent, a blow dryer, hairspray or gel that makes your hair hard.

Step 1: Use Original Listerine (Yellow) with a shower cap. Soak hair in it get the scalp. Saturate head. Be really careful of eyes! Leave in with shower cap for 2 hours. While your waiting, clean your house. All sheets and blankets in hot water and then dried all the way the dryer on high. Pillows and blanket do not need to be washed, but you can put them in the dryer for a half hour on high heat. Wipe down all the places you hang out in the house. Vacuum your beds, couches, floors. Anything that you don't need, like stuffed animals,,etc. throw into plastic bags and tie them up tight. Be prepared to leave them for a week. The Listerine kills the bugs dead. MAKES U FEEL BETTER TO BE RID OF CRAWLING BUGS, but now you have to get rid of the eggs. The Listerine kills them and it also makes them turn white easier to see, but it also makes them get hard and stick in hair more.

Step 2: you want them out of your head. Who knows if one lived through all of that alcohol, but now it's time for a comb out. Get the best lice comb you can find; a metal one. After you rinse your head of the Listerine, spray in white vinegar. make a paste with 1 part vinegar, 1 part conditioner, and 1 part baking soda. the thinner your hair, the grittier the paste. Take 1 inch sections and comp with lice comb. Wipe of comp and rinse it in between strokes. you're getting the nits. EW.

After whole head is done, rinse it out. BLOW DRY YOUR HEAD. Lice hate heat. Now get someone to look through your head and pick out any reining nits. They should be a lot looser than they were than after the Listerine. GO TO A PROFESSIONAL DE-LOUSER/ LICE PROFESSIONAL AND GET THE REST OF THE TICKS OUT.

For the next four days, use the lice shampoo (leave in for a half hour) and the spray leave-in conditioner. Blow dry every night. Straight ironing is good too. They hate heat; we hate them. On the fifth day, do the comb out again. 6th day shampoo. 7th day - comb out again. Get it checked by a pro. You should be lice free.

Now you want to prevent them. Wear your hair up when your in public areas, wear a scented leave in conditioner, and put a barrier on your head with a gel or a hairspray for the rest of your life. You don't want them to think your head is yummy. You want to make it a scent, uncomfortable place for them.

I have 4 daughters and recently all had lice. I refused to buy the over-the-counter meds/ shampoos because of the pesticides.

The 1st time they had it I mixed, part olive oil, part vinegar and small amount of tea tree oil in a small spray bottle. I sectioned the hair starting at the neck line working towards the face. Spraying/saturating roots (approx 2 inches). Placed plastic cap (you could even use saran wrap) on heads for hours or even over night (use towel on pillow if you leave in over night). Before washing out I comb thru w/ lice comb. Wash out hair (using heavy shampoo) and condition good. Comb hair again. Lice and nits were gone!

I've also used Original Listerine. Much easier and less mess. Pouring it in a spray bottle. Again saturating roots. Pull hair in bun or cap and LEAVE IT IN. Listerine will dry and actually cleans the hair well. Once ready to wash out, rinse hair and wash well. Comb thru w/ lice comb. Most, if not all lice will be gone. Works like a charm!! Repeat if necessary and/or use vinegar in a spray bottle after Listerine treatment.

Am 20 years old but am having lice since am a child..tired different treatment no use..but am hoping to use Listerine will it work for me or not? share ur comments.....

I work at a very low income school~ my students are always coming in with lice. This year, I brought it home to both my daughters. I used listerine. I was told to use the mint (green). I poured it on all our heads, covered our head in a shower cap for 2 hrs, rinsed with white vinegar and then put conditioner on my girls and then used a lice comb. I combed several dead bugs and they were lice free.

Me, on the other hand - could not comb. I have thick , thick long hair and I could not get the back of my hair. I went ahead and repeated the process every 3 days for 2 weeks, just in case an egg hatched. That worked for me.

Hi, I've gotten head lice on and off my entire life. I have three sisters with beautiful thick long hair, and they always seem to keep coming no matter what.

Throughout the years my parents used.. RID, mayo, vinegar, essential oils, olive oil & dish soap, and heavy amounts of tea tree products. They all work about 75%.

Then, when my head met uncontrollable itching last month, I figured I had head lice. I had nothing to treat them with. I poured Listerine over my head, thinking the menthol and alcohol mix would sooth the itching. Little did I know, the mouthwash would kill ALL the bugs!

Listerine works.

Realized I had head lice and searched for home remedies rather than using the dangerous products sold. Read a lot about the use of Listerine so decided to give it a try. Saturated my hair, covered for two hours. Saw dead adults and nymphs when rinsing - yahoo!! Soaked my hair with vinegar for a few hours then started the long process of combing my long, thick hair with my lice comb. Four and half hours later, I'm hoping all eggs are gone. I'll repeat the process regardless. Just talking about these damn things makes anyone itch!

Thank everyone for the Listerine worked! My little 6 year old had such a bad case, treated her with OTC stuff. Noticed she was still itching. Four days later find live bugs UGH! here we go again washing and picking, washing clothes and everything. I began looking for alternatives stumbled upon this website with the Listerine and white vinegar. Just finished the Listerine and she has 10 or so dead baby bugs in the bag. She is having the vinegar treatment now. Thank you all. I wish I could say thank you enough. I will follow up and let everyone know how it goes!

This works! My girls come home full of lice from their dad's house every single visit!!! As mad as I get, I know I can control it fast! I mix Listerene and white vinegar in a 2oz spray bottle and soak their long hair and then cover with a shower cap. As they sleep the lice die! Yes, it's best to leave on over night! As they rinse away in the shower I load the washer (and laundry room floor) with everything they slept on. Then slowly comb their hair little by little! They eek at all the dead bugs that fall off their hair! Lol Mom, Gross look another one! :)

Well I'm back on here 18 months later, now the school has another outbreak and our little boy has picked them up again. Just wanted to share how we tried everything and found a combination of things that work. This time I'm knocking it on the head from the start!

Last time we all got them - nightmare - I have very long hair. Checked mine this time and I didn't have them, but went straight to the hairdressers and had 8" lopped off, to make it easier to comb in case I get them - I was crying trying to comb my hair for nits last time.

So - I would say keep the Listerine and Vinegar thing as a last resort, or as an immediate thing if someone has masses of lice and you just want them dead and out. I did the Listerine as a last resort last time - after doing olive oil, vinegar, combining every night with conditioner. It was a total nightmare, very messy and very time consuming.

In the end we did one thing for the little boy and one thing for ourselves. I found Neem shampoo works. It has to be Neem shampoo that is made from Neem seed, not from Neem leaf or bark.

It is a lot less messy and it works. You wash your hair in it, leave it on 15 minutes, then comb through (we use the nitty gritty comb, plus a white one for detection initially, if you're not sure if you have them). You do this for four days on the trot, wash, leave in 15 minutes, condition, comb. Then you just use the shampoo once a week until the problem has gone away for everyone.

It was the only thing we found that worked, because the neem basically starves the lice and also stops them reproducing, so they die, and can't lay any eggs - so any eggs that hatch will not be able to grow and lay more eggs, and they will die anyway.

I came across a scientific article that said shampoo with neem seed (oil or extract)in killed everything, if left on for 15 minutes.

So this time, all we have done is, comb and wash our hair in this shampoo. I've also got a robicomb as well, because the little boy hates the whole palaver of hair washing and combing, and you can use it on dry hair. I wouldn't rely on it to kill all lice, and it doesn't remove eggs, but it is good for detection, to help know there is nothing left, or to check if you suspect they've picked them up again.

Hope this helps. I found the Listerine and Vinegar worked, but it was all too stressful keeping things on your head for hours, and still having to make sure all the nits were out.

PS I wouldn't use coal tar shampoos - they are supposed to be carcinogenic and can cause reactions to sunlight on your scalp, hence in the Uk they are only allowed to be sold in a chemist for therapeutic purposes - for really severe dandruff eg. I know lice is also a therapeutic thing, but there are other options.

And from what I have researched, coconut conditioner doesn't make a lot of difference - most of them just have coconut scent in, which might be a deterrant, but neem is also a deterrant. The ones that do have a bit of coconut oil in have very little. Some people have used pure coconut oil and said all it does is slow the lice down a bit. Any oil will help drown them, but they have been known to survive after 14 hours!

Essential oils can be too strong for some people as well, and shouldn't be used on children or pregnant women. Some of the shampoos have essential oils in, which I reckon is Ok because a lot more dilute. They can be absorbed through the scalp if too strong.

The Listerine was certainly a good find in an emergency though!

A couple of days ago I found out my 4 yr old had lice it was like 8pm, my thought then was how am I going to get rid of these disgusting things..

I started to look online for home remedies there's so many out there but to me this one was the easiest. Since I didn't have Listerine I grabbed my Colgate total pro-shield Didn't know if it would work but it was worth giving it a try. I put it all over my sons hair, wrapped it in a bag for an hr and it was a Miracle I removed all of them that day! :D
Today I did the 2nd treatment and baaang they are all gone, Will def keep some mouthwash all the time since he will begin preschool I have to be prepared

I found that it is easier if you mix the listerine in conditioner and then apply it to your hair and let soak for 4 hrs in shower cap then wash out and reapply the next day for 4hrs and then use a flat iron your hair if possible, then wet your hair again or wait until next day, wet hair, comb the nits out using conditioner and then continue that last step the next day to make sure there all out and flat iron your hair again and you should be good to go. Worked for me!!!

i had lice now nooo

I have three kids with waist length LONG THICK curly hair. Over the last three months we have been battling head lice from a sleepover. We tried EVERYTHING, RID, NIX, even prescription lindane which was terrifying (have you read the label on that stuff?)!

I thought we FINALLY had it under control with that, then school started and I get the call from the school nurse; we were re-infested and the school said out of 90 students 30 were sent home with head lice! We live in the tropics and they are just really hard to get rid of here, and obviously made the rounds this summer with slumber parties and beach towels.

Well what FINALLY worked was this:

1. Have them lean backwards over the sink and drench their head in Listerene. Wring the excess out of the hair, and if it's long coil it into a bun and pin it up, then put a cheap clear plastic shower cap on the head. Leave it on for about an hour, you can do longer if you like but an hour worked great for us.

2. After an hour, when you take the shower cap off, you will see lice totally dead stuck all over inside the shower cap. Have them stand in the shower with a hand held shower massager, and work some good conditioner all through their hair. As you SPRAY their hair, holding the shower sprayer with one hand, comb through the hair with the other using a regular fine toothed comb or even a good bristle brush. You will see the lice just literally falling out onto the shower floor, all dead. Keep brushing, adding more conditioner as needed. Finish up with a good bit of conditioner only lightly rinsed on the ends of the hair because the listerene does dry your hair (although not as much as that RID, Nix stuff does).

3. Rinse the scalp with white vinegar. Some people say to leave the vinegar in for 30 minutes but we just leave it in for a few minutes then lightly rinse with conditioner again.

4. towel dry the hair and then comb comb comb, the nits will easily comb out with a nit comb, because the vinegar loosened them up. I am really thorough with this, but the listerene has damaged these nits, they are dried out and most will not hatch so if you miss one or two don't panic.

5. Re-do this whole process in about a week.

6. Every day before school use a spray bottle with some water/listerene/tea tree oil in it to help keep any new hatching lice under control, the tea tree oil makes lice sterile, they cannot lay eggs and it kills the bacteria in their stomach required to digest blood so it slowly kills them.

7. All the listerene will dr your hair out, so make sure you use a really good conditioner and some kind of leave-in conditioner for a month or two to help re-establish oils in your hair.

This is the only thing, that I as a mother of three, living in the tropics where we grow super-bugs of every kind (including spiders as big as your hand!) - Listerne. It's cheap, and effective if you remember to re-treat and comb thoroughly..... and it's non-toxic, no need to put neuro-toxins on your kids heads! Good luck!

I recently found lice on my 9yr old daughter. She has thick curly hair and is s super tender headed. I tried RID 7 days ago and now doing a second treatment because I found 3 live lice yesterday.

This is the most frustrating thing ever. I am hoping someone could help me out and let me know. How soon I could do this Listerine and vinegar treatment. Getting pretty desperate because my daughter goes back to school in another week. I would hate for her to start school with this. Please anybody I need help. :(

I am definitely trying this. After battling this stuff for over 4 months with my daughter & myself, I'm willing to try anything. I have tried R&C, Resultz, and Nix and none of that stuff has work. My daughter is sitting right now with a shower cap on, doused with Listerine in her hair. Will let you know how it all works but from what I've read here, it seems to work. Also gonna soak her hair with vinegar too. This is the last resort. If it doesn't work, our heads are getting shaved LoL

OK - I have posted on here before and the Listerine/vinegar works. I will tell you my dr prescribed the generic to "Natroba" is a miracle lice treatment. It is a gritty treatment that kills lice AND breaks the eggs apart - no combing necessary. The only thing is, the pharmacy usually takes 3-4 days to get it in stock.

My grand-daughter got lice for the first time about a month ago..she travels back and forth from mom's house to dad's house every other week...she is in kindergarten... We all are working hard to get rid of and keep the buggers away....I have found that the Listerine is awesome!!! will never use the OTC pesticide kind much poison!!! I use baby oil for 2 hours in a shower cap...2 hours if Listerine in a shower cap...rinse with coconut oil conditioner...spray again with Listerine and H2O in a spray bottle...part each piece of hair and comb with a nit comb and so far so good...lice/nits are gone!!!

I have 7 children living in my home. We have never had head lice till the youngest started kdg. I work in preK and I'm a licensed stylist I'm always checking heads! One Morning while fixing hair I notice one scratching nonstop. I bring her over to check and oh, what a horrid infestation! Everyone else was clean not so much as a nit.

We tried OTC rid and I combed her hair for 4 hrs picking out nits and bugs. I called the school nurse (thankfully a life long friend of mine) to have her check the class, she asked who my daughter shared a cubby with? Come to find out all 3 of her cubby mates were habitual offenders of head lice. I found your article and I use a spray bottle full of Listerine every morning all 7 get their heads sprayed with it, it drys without a residue and I spray coats, backpacks, hats etc before and after school.

Knock on wood we have been lice free for 2 years. Even when I get heads up if other children in their class has had them. I swear by this and now several others who I told have started this. I suggest it to parents in my preK class and to clients in my salon!

Trying this right now!! We live in the Dominican Republic and they don't have ANY lice combs here! They sell some treatments but they are not any US brands and one has to stay on for 12-24 hours. Mamma ain't got time for that!!

While looking initially for shampoo and combs I was told by one man to use a flea powder for dogs and another dog shampoo for fleas, ticks, etc. Hubby wouldn't let me put the powder on her head but I did try the soap. First day I found them I heard about Dawn (I used the Green Apple anti-bacterial kind) and any live bugs I found I stuck in a drop of the detergent on the sink and it killed them. The suds helped find all the live ones which I combed out with a regular store bought fine toothed comb (not a nit comb).

Then I used an Olive Oil conditioner too with the Dawn and left that on for a couple of hours. Never saw a nit and thought awesome, no worries, I got them all. Well I didn't realize how small those buggers are and how stuck to the hair shaft they are!! So I picked as many as I could out of her super thick, bi-racial hair with tweezers and a flashlight, or just cut the piece of the hair with scissors vs. trying to slide the nit off the piece of hair. Then I started just pulling the hair with the egg out of her head.

So a week or so goes by and I am slowly removing eggs but have no idea if the eggs are dead or alive. Today I am proudly looking at the Baggie with all the nits from last night and holy crap.... They are hatching!!!!! So the dog soap didn't kill the eggs obviously.

I read that the listerine kills the nits and I hope that is true!! I also did finally track down a Rit knit comb and I feel like it is useless!! I feel like it is better to do it by hand. And as for the vinegar I am afraid to loosen up the eggs and have them go all over the place. Her hair is super thick and curly.

I am totally investing in preventative measures going from here. The policies they have here are not good and they don't have the knowledge of what to do. In her class they only saw eggs in one girl's hair. I don't know who gave it to who. I agree nit removal is essential and anyone I talked to just said wash the hair. Did I mention we had 5 house guests this week?? Thankfully my daughter (6 years) old has been amazing through this!!

Well, according to what I have tried with Listerine. It did work. It worked great. Once I was done, the itching stopped dramatically. I still had a little itch hear and there. But who wouldn't after all that?
So when the night came, and I finally lay down on my bed I felt one still crawling around. Ugh...
So the next day I used COCONUT OIL. and let it sit in my hair over night 6-8 hours from why I was told. So I did.

The next morning ! Washed my hair with TEA TREE SHAMPOO (can be found at trader joe's) no more bugs!
Thanks to this add I am hugely relieved with this nasty situation. And too the people that say it doesn't work, you're doing it wrong ;)

Two years ago our neighbours children gave us lice. With two of my children having asthma I was concerned about the nix and with five of us in the family cost was an issue. A friend of mine contacted her sister down in the states who got a home remedy from a top doctor.

Get your regular Listerine and completely soak your head and rubbing it in really good.
Take a disposable shower cap and put it over your head. If you have long hair use some hair elastics to put your hair up before putting the shower cap on.
Take a towel and wrap it around your head covering the shower and helping prevent any drips. It will feel cold, itchy and tingly.
Leave it on for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Rinse with warm water. The lice will just fall out like crazy for the first one or two treatments.
Next repeat the process with regular white vinegar, also leaving it on for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Then rinse.
After you are done towel dry the hair then comb with the lice comb.

This process can be done every day or every second day and should be done for about two weeks or until you no longer see lice coming out in the rinse water and no more come out when using the lice comb.

I was amazed at the amount of lice that came out of our heads with this treatment. If we ever are pained again with lice, I will never use the nix again. For a family of five it is too expensive and contains pesticides. For my family it is Listerine and vinegar all the way. I also mix a few drops of tea tree oil in my families shampoo and conditioner bottles. Put a few drops in and shake really well. Avoid getting it in your eyes or mouth.

We always use Listerine now because everything else we have tried never works. However we were told that the bugs can hold their breathe for up to 4 hours so we leave the Listerine on for 6 to 8 hours to really kill all bugs and most the eggs. We don't use those combs because they never work for us. I have to manually go thru their hair section by little section pulling each egg out. Usually have to do this a few times but the lice is gone by then. Just soak and pull up in a shower cap.

Can you use store brand listerine? Same active ingredients.

People's Pharmacy response: Yes. What matters are the ingredients, not the brand.

Yes, I used generic brand on both my and my daughter's head and worked really well. We seemed to get it all in one treatment but will repeat today to make sure. We followed with vinegar rinse.

I had a small lice infestation recently, and my mom spent over 20 hours combing through my hair to remove all of the nits and eggs. Before she did that, however, she saturated my head in coconut oil for an hour, washed it out, rinsed my scalp with original Listerine, washed my hair with Dawn dish detergent, and poured vinegar over my scalp. Each day I would wash my hair with the Dawn to clean the cement away from the eggs, and coconut oil smothers whatever is on your head. The Listerine effectively killed everything on my head, but we think my scalp was chemically burned by it because it began to peel off like paper. However, it killed the lice, which was what it was meant to do, so I can somewhat recommend it.

My 9year old daughter as nits, gave them to me and her younger brothers 3yrs and 1yr. I've been reading about listerine and it says avoid on children under 12 as it contains alcohol. I've bought some but now I daren't use it on them. Has anyone used it on their children of these ages? I've been using headrin but it's useless!!

Hi Kelly...our family is living in Cambodia, and interact with lots of village children, who have LOTS of lice. Two of our girls got lice - 8 and 10 years old - and we tried the listerine treatment on them with no adverse side effects other than smelling like listerine for the next several days. But...the lice were dead!

I just discovered tonight that I have lice too, so here I sit with my head covered in listerine. =( I'm going to wash my hair with vinegar too. Another helpful thing is looking up the life cycle of a louse. It kinda helps you have an idea of when you should be retreating, etc. And don't forget to pick through their hair! It takes a long time, but it's important and worth it in the long run. There are helpful videos on Youtube about how to effectively pick the nits out. Best wishes!

Low and behold, I have a 10 year old who brought lice home from a friends house and gave it to her 5 brothers and sisters and myself:( We have always used Lindane until we found out it's no longer made!! The doctor gave them Permethrin which didn't work. So, we are all sleeping in plastic caps with Listerine soaked heads!!! Hope this works:)))

My story is a VERY long one, so I won't lay out all the details. It spans about 13 months, although the word "lice" did not even enter my mind until I was about 8 months into the situation. When it was all over I must have spent about $1,200 dollars on prescription drugs, doctors/dermatologist appointments, and home remedies. During the last 3 weeks with the "problem" I spent about 5 hours per day dealing with the apparent head lice problem. I finally got so fed-up and discouraged that I went to a head-lice-removal salon, even though I had to drive about 90 miles to get there. Much to my surprise the salon did not find ANY head lice on me! When I described to them all that I had been through over a very long period of time, I was told that the symptoms that I had early on could NOT have been caused by head lice.

A few days after visiting the head-lice-removal salon when I saw my dermatologist for about the 4th time concerning my "head lice problem", and I told her what happened at the head-lice-removal salon, we both came to the conclusion that I probably NEVER had head lice! It probably all started with a case of scalp eczema. Then somebody, who was trying to be helpful, put it into my mind that I might have lice. After researching lice on the Internet it seemed to me that that is what I had. All the symptoms seemed to fit perfectly. From then on I saw everything and analyzed everything through the lens/belief that I DID have head lice. However, in reality I probably had some scalp eczema at first. That probably healed but then I was scrapping with the nit comb, and later with a dog comb, dandruff onto my shoulders. This was mistaken for head lice.

The bottom line is, if you have not dealt with head lice before, don't assume that you have it. Put some samples of what you comb out of your hair in a clear baggie and take that to a dermatologist and insist that those scalp samples be examined by him/her under a microscope or by a lab. In lieu of seeing a dermatologist, if you are fortunate enough to have a head-lice-removal salon nearby, visit one. You could be saving yourself a LOT of time, money, worry, and stress. I wish that I had taken one of these two actions a LLOOOOONG time ago! Thank God that there are people who are willing to work in a head-lice-removal salon!

After treating my daughter with a name brand home remedy treatment for head lice... and the hours of trying to get everything from her hair and spray the aerosol for bedding and such... and dealing with the fact that I myself was getting physically sick due in part that I'm putting flea spray on my daughter's items and items that cannot throw into the wash. (Seriously look at the active ingredient in that can is the exact same that is found in flea and tick spray.)

I threw everything into the trash. I searched the internet and saw that Listerine kills Head lice..... I thought to myself if you can put it into your mouth your why not in your hair? So I went out bought the biggest bottle and getting our results that very next hour... it was killing the adults and releasing the glue for the nits.

So I swear by the original Listerine hands down never will I go back to the name brand or any lice treatment, as a matter of fact, ever again. Besides it also leaves your hair refreshed and minty smelling...

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