How To Get Gum Out of Hair

If you have little girls, you’ll probably have a Gum Incident.

You don’t have to cut it out!  Here’s how to get gum out of hair, without chemicals or scissors.  Peanut butter works for me.

First, gather your supplies:

gum hair removal supplies

  • Peanut butter (or, if you’re allergic, cooking oil)

  • A comb (one with wide tooth and fine tooth sides works best)

  • A paper towel or napkin (you’ll be wiping the gum residue on this – you don’t want it in your laundry)

  • A cranky, gum infested child
  • At least 30 minutes of free time

If there is simply no way you can devote a chunk of time to gum removal right now, wrap the gummy hair (or is it hairy gum?) in a piece of aluminum foil to contain the mess.  Then tackle it after your husband gets home, the other children go to bed, you’ve finished a box of chocolate for fortification, etc.

gum hair removal apply peanut butter

Smear the gum liberally with peanut butter (or oil).  That’s right, put it right on her head!  Try to work the strands of hair apart and really rub it in.

gum hair removal work in peanut butter

Work the peanut butter some more.  Start trying to separate chunks of hair.

gum hair removal use comb

Gently start teasing the gum out using a comb.

It will look worse before it looks better.

gum hair removal wipe residue off comb

Patience, Daniel-san.  You may need to apply more peanut butter.

gum hair removal keep combing

Comb, comb, comb.

gum hair removal gums out

Finally!  Gum is out.  What to do about this peanut butter?

gum hair removal wash hair

When the wad of gum is out, wash the section of hair in the sink, if you can.  I just use regular soap to cut through the oil.  You need to make sure the gum residue is gone.  If it still feels sticky, do the peanut butter dance again.  (Hair will probably feel greasy, that’s okay.)

Wash hair as usual during bath time.

gum hair removal comb junky

Your comb has seen better days.  You’ll need to the peanut butter out of the nooks and crannies.

gum hair removal clean comb

A flosser works great for teeth of all kinds!

gum hair removal desolvit

You can always break out the big guns for this.

Check out more Works for Me Wednesday tips at We Are THAT Family!

I love comments. Tell me what you think!

  • Nadja July 8, 2009, 12:40 pm

    I love the take-by-take photos! Well done!

  • Milehimama July 8, 2009, 1:40 pm

    ha ha – you know you’re a blogger when you are getting gum out of hair and your first thought is “I need the camera!”

  • Cole with Low Insurance July 8, 2009, 1:42 pm

    Nice pictures and explanation. I’ve always used ice for my two girls gum mishaps.

  • rosamundi July 8, 2009, 4:42 pm

    Here’s how to get gum out of hair, without chemicals or scissors. Peanut butter works for me.

    Probably less likely to have Child Protective Services coming around than sticking her head in the freezer, too.

  • meghan April 11, 2011, 4:32 pm

    thak you so much for this if you hadnt put this up i probably wouldnt of got the gum out of my hair i ma very greatful

  • ryan December 1, 2011, 4:00 pm

    thank you soo much you helped me out with a science fair project
    AMAZING !! :)

  • ariana January 19, 2012, 9:45 pm

    Thank you so much I woudve went to school with gum in my HAIR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH.

  • Jenny July 27, 2012, 5:56 pm

    Thank you! Used your pics and humor and advice and got a HUGE chunk of gum out of my daughter’s hair…that was located at the root of hair (that is all the way down to her lower back!). We used the oil rather than the peanut butter and the mess was minimal and no real gunk in the comb. Again, thank you!

  • Milehimama July 27, 2012, 11:49 pm

    It’s amazing how simple it actually is! Glad I could help.

  • Darcy May 25, 2013, 4:25 pm

    Thanks! I used this trick today to get gum out of the middle of my daughter’s long hair and it worked great! My husband wanted to cut a chunk out of her hair! Thank goodness I didn’t leave the peanut butter removal to him! :)


About Milehimama

Desperately thrifty mom of 10, sharing my frugal tips, easy shortcuts, recipes, and thoughts on natural living and real food.

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