How to Remove Hair Glue From Clothes

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Hair glue is used to bind artificial hair extensions to natural hair. There are numerous types of bonding -- such as cold fusion and warm fusion -- each with their own unique cleaning methods. Hairdressing with hair glue is a messy job. Even if you get a professional to undertake the task, you’ll have little chance of making it through without encountering some falling glue along the way. Since most of the chemical compounds found in hair glue are water resistant, this makes them incredibly difficult to remove from clothing.

Types of Hair Glue

Soft bond adhesives are made from an acrylic or latex solution and will dry with the consistency of rubber. Hard bond adhesives are a type of nontoxic cyanoacrylate adhesive -- the same compound as super glue -- and will dry solid. Cyanoacrylate is very strong and will dry fast; therefore, the quicker you act, the easier it is to remove.

Keratin Treatments

Keratin hair treatments are used to attach hair extensions to natural hair and are known for providing a more authentic look. They require a tool similar to a hot glue gun, which is tipped with a keratin wax that will melt on and around the extension when a heat clamp is applied. This method is called fusion and, when applied correctly, it will dry soft and remain almost completely undetectable.

Regardless of the adhesive used, there are effective ways to remove hair glue that gets on your clothes.

Things You'll Need

  • Dull knife or spoon

  • Mild laundry detergent

  • Toothbrush

  • White vinegar

  • Cloth

  • Cotton swab

  • Nail polish remover

  • Rubbing alcohol

  • Latex gloves

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Scrape off as much glue as possible using a dull knife or spoon, and then blot the affected area with a dry, clean cloth to remove the excess. Do not wipe the glue; otherwise, you’ll smear it over the garment.
  2. Mix together one teaspoon of laundry detergent with a cup of warm water to create a homemade cleaning solution.
  3. Dip the toothbrush in the cleaning solution and lightly scrub the affected area for several minutes.
  4. Place two tablespoons of white vinegar in the microwave on a high setting for 15 seconds, or until it’s hot. Use the toothbrush to brush it onto the glue. After two minutes, the glue should soften and be easier to remove.
  5. Wipe off the glue with a damp cloth.

If white vinegar isn’t strong enough to dissolve the glue, add a small amount of rubbing alcohol or an acetone-based nail polish remover to a cotton swab and blot it on the stain. Just a few drops of acetone will dissolve most adhesives, including cyanoacrylate, acrylic, latex and keratin. After a few minutes, wipe off the glue with a damp cloth and wash the garment following the care label instructions.

Warning

    • If you’re using nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol, spot test the solution on an inconspicuous area of clothing to ensure it doesn’t ruin the garment.
    • Wear latex gloves when handling acetone, otherwise it will irritate your hands.
    • If you get any acetone on your skin, wash the affected area with soap and water immediately, and then apply moisturizer.

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