If you have experienced or are experiencing the pain of having chewing gum stuck on your hair, this article will save you from a bad day. When we were small and didn’t know any better, cutting the hair was the only option to remove the gum. And most of the time, the trip didn’t end on a good note. We will provide you with various remedies to gently take out the gum without having to go through an agonizing haircut. And don’t forget to check out the pros and cons of each method.
- 1 Section the hair before removing gum
- 2 4 ways to remove gum from hair
- 3 Fake tricks! Don’t get fooled!
Section the hair before removing gum
Before any of the removing methods, we advise that you section the hair first. Carefully section the part where the gum is and make sure that you separate as much as possible. Tie two parts of hair separately in ponytails if you have long hair, and be aware that they should be placed far from each other. If not, more hair can be caught up in the mess.
4 ways to remove gum from hair
1. Harden the gum with an ice cube
Pros: The cold temperature of the ice makes the gum harden. And when the gum hardens, it loses the sticky trait and stops grabbing on the hair. The best part? If you leave the ice on the hair long enough (15 minutes or more), it is possible to remove the whole piece without leaving small bits. This is a quite common method. After the hair cutting, this is the second option that comes to mind to every person who has gum on their hair.
Cons: The level of difficulty to do this trick is easy, and it costs almost nothing since every household has at least one ice tray laying in the back of the freezer. However, there is a downside to it.
According to the experts who have gone through the situation, ice doesn’t work very quickly, and for it to work, they had to directly press the ice onto the gum. Normally, it takes about 15 minutes or more for the gum to harden completely. It is not advisable to cover the ice with a cloth to avoid cold hands because it takes a bit of coldness away.
2. Use any oil-based product
Pros: There is a huge variety of products that are oil-based. You can use: olive oil, normal cooking oil, Vaseline or even lubricant. All these products are oily and impossible to remove with just water. The point of using oil-based substances is because the slippery liquid reduces the friction between the gum and the hair, which makes it more gentle to rub it off. Also, they are not damaging to the hair.
Cons: Cooking oil is easy to find but other products don’t casually lay around in the house. So the tricky part is that you will have to work fast but careful with the hair. Having the gum on for a long time can ruffle the hair and make the knot more complicated. Also, it is not so relaxing to remove the oil from your hair. From our personal experience, shampoo can’t completely remove oil with one wash. You will have to repeat a few times to take off the oil and leftover gum.
3. Dissolvers like rubbing alcohol or vinegar work like a charm
Pros: These dissolvers are easy to find. But how do they work? Rubbing alcohol or vinegar contains elements that break down the sugar in the gum and take away the stickiness of it. The dissolvers break the gum and actually dissolve it. You can work the rubbing alcohol directly onto your hair without any problem since it evaporates quickly and doesn’t have an unpleasant smell. For the vinegar, you can use it right away or heat it up for a quicker result.
Cons: The only inconvenience that comes with a dissolver like vinegar is the lingering smell. You will have to wash your hair right after using it.
4. Other weird remedies that work: Peanut butter and mayonnaise
Some materials we find easy and logical to use, but some are out of our imagination. Peanut butter and mayonnaise are the two weird remedies that work. We have done some experiments and they do break down the gum.
In the case of peanut butter, it seems that the oil in it helps reduce friction and also dissolves the gum. It breaks the gum into smaller pieces and removes them completely. However, cleaning up afterward is a nightmare.
As for the mayonnaise, it is said that this creamy sauce helps soften the gum, which is weird because normally the trick is to harden the gum so it stops holding on for its dear life. People have tried the method and all said that it worked. No logic is needed in this case.
Fake tricks! Don’t get fooled!
Alongside tricks that work, there are also some frauds that people make up just to draw attention. One of them is the ironing method. According to the trick´s creator, first you have to cover the part of hair that is stuck with gum with a tissue. The next step is to iron it with a straightener. The tip is to hold it for more than 10 seconds and the gum will stick onto the tissue instead of the hair.
We can confirm that this doesn’t work and it will ruin your hair beyond salvage point. By ironing the hair, gum will be softened and spread into more hair strains. So there is zero point in doing it because it is making things worse.
So we have given you 4 ways to remove gum from hair without cutting it. Nevertheless, if you see it as a nice chance for a change, a brand new haircut is not so bad. But if you don’t, try one of these tricks and your hair will be as good as new. We recommend using dissolvers first since they have fewer cons. Put these methods to the test!