Home Remedies to Get Rid of Lice: What Works, What Doesn't

Get rid of pesky lice at home with DIY treaments. We have the scoop on which home remedies for lice really can help (and which ones you should skip).  

keep olive oil in your pantry for healthy salad dressing

Lice are tiny, wingless insects that live on humans in the hairy parts of the body, feeding on human blood. If there's an outbreak at your child's school, don't panic (we know, it's hard not to!). In addition to using an over-the-counter lice treatment, you can also try these natural remedies to help get rid of lice.

  • TRY IT: Tea tree oil. Research suggests it might be effective. Try a shampoo or gel as a follow-up to an OTC lice shampoo.
  • TRY IT: Olive oil or mayonnaise. Apply thickly; cover with a shower cap overnight. Best used with another method.
  • TRY IT: Cetaphil cleanser. Believe it or not, this was found effective in a 2004 study. Coat your child's head with the cleanser, then blow-dry; wash out eight hours later. Repeat weekly.
  • SKIP IT: Listerine. There's no evidence that it kills lice, and soaking your head in it could lead to burns.