How to Get Epoxy Out of Hair? Made Easy and Quick!

You’ve just applied epoxy resin as hair gel, maybe thinking it would sustain the gorgeous hairstyle for longer, or your novelty-seeking tendency pushed you to try something new on your hair. Whatever the reason, a messy wad of rubber stuck in your hair haunts you at the end of the day. We bet it’s one of those questions you never ask until it happens to you, “How to get epoxy out of hair?” Well, the simple solution is: cut it out! “But I don’t want a huge chunk missing from my hair.” We agree.

Instead of having rocked up with a new cut that isn’t you, try these foolproof methods to quickly free yourself from a sticky situation – without cutting and hurting your hair and yourself, too! But first things first:

Can I Remove Epoxy Resin From Hair?

Yes, you can. It’s not as hard as you may assume, based on your lack of epoxy knowledge and experience. Interestingly, your kitchen, haircare toolkit, and even your first aid box already contain the solution to get the job done. Let’s together revisit these places and wipe all the mess out right away!

Products You’ll Need to Get Epoxy Out of Hair

The product selection depends on what type of epoxy you’ve built: cured or uncured. You’ll also need other products that ensure your safety during the epoxy removal process. These are:

  • Disposable Gloves – This is good – and essential – the first line of defense when working on an epoxy removal project. You know what? Removing epoxy from your skin is a much more complicated and skin-irritating process than removing it from your hair. What if you still get your hands stained with epoxy even if you’ve worn those gloves? A high-quality, durable pair makes all the difference. Each glove in this disposable 1000-piece glove pack by Mainett can resist oil, solvent, and chemicals. Epoxy is a chemical, FYI!
  • A Comb – Here, not for styling but to help you separate the epoxied strands from the rest of the hair. They can create more tangles during the session. You need a special detangling brush that supports stretching epoxy down to hair ends.
  • A Hair-Softening Conditioner – After such a hard workout and product abuse (though done for the greater good), your hair is exhausted and rough. To smooth things out, you need a good-quality, highly moisturizing conditioner, which you’ll use after shampoo-washing your epoxy-free hair.

Removing Cured Epoxy

As you work on the epoxy, it becomes a gel or “kick-off.” The epoxy progresses from a tacky gel consistency to a texture similar to hard rubber. You can even dent it with your thumbnail.

Removing the hard substance from hair will be a tough job. It seems like this, but it isn’t true. Try out the two methods and see what works best.

Also Read: Can I Straighten My Hair After Dying it?

Use a Hair Dryer or Hot Iron

Stubborn residues can easily be tackled using a hair dryer, hot iron, or a heat gun. The point is to convert the solid epoxy to a sticky or liquid mass using heat. That melted resin could be removed mechanically afterward.

Usage and Precautions

Make sure you buy a hair dryer that contains the following qualities:

  • Contains variable heat/speed settings and precise drying attachments, so you get drying flexibility and do not cause any hair/scalp damage.
  • It should be lightweight so that you won’t get any shoulder/arm strains due to the long-time carrying of the dryer.

We consider the Revlon Compact Hair Dryer the perfect product meeting all the qualities mentioned earlier. Use it; I love it!

Keep the dryer at least 8 inches off the hair and start with the lowest heat/speed setting. If the epoxy doesn’t start melting within 10 minutes, increase the temperature and speed of the dryer.

You can use a concentrator nozzle or a diffuser to focus the air on a specific hair section while not interfering with the rest.

With a flat iron, do everything you would typically do to straighten your hair. Compared to the hair dryer, one point that makes a flat iron better is the extra smoothness before kicking the epoxy off the hair. A flat iron makes hair tangle-free by straightening the hair up; thus, removing epoxy becomes much easier.

But the only point that makes the flat iron a downgrade is the quality and durability. The only product we’ve found for this job is FURIDEN Professional Hair Straightening Iron, which has the following benefits:

  • Heats quickly in 15 seconds, Saves Energy is More Durable, Lasts Longer, and significantly reduces overall straightening time.
  • The floating plates with curved edges continuously adjust the angle to avoid snagging your hair to give you more control while styling.

Now you’ve put any of the two tools in hand. It’s better to separate the epoxied hair if it’s a large area. And in case you’ve had different areas on your head epoxied, then start heating the smaller sections first.

While heating, wear gloves so that the heat and melted epoxy resin don’t get stuck onto your hands/fingers. Additionally, take small breaks in case the heat feels harsh to your scalp or nearby onto the head area.

Once the epoxy reaches the point where you can call it ‘[uncured,’ pick up your scraper or spatula to do the main job!

Using Acetone

This is precisely what gives nail polish remover its sharp smell and effect. Using acetone for removing epoxy doesn’t require the epoxy to be first uncured. Instead, the epoxy surface becomes softer and sticky enough to be removed as soon as acetone touches it.

Whether you prefer pure acetone or a nail polish remover, you’ll find no difference in the results.

Usage and Precautions

Put some liquid on a cotton swab and rub the epoxied hair until the epoxy resin softens. You may need to wait a couple of days before seeing results. That’s not to say you need to rub the liquid for hours; instead, do it thrice a day for 15 minutes each turn. You’ll see the epoxy getting softer on day 3!

Once you’ve removed the epoxy, wash your hair with soap and warm water. Don’t forget to apply a moisturizer afterward, as acetone draws moisture from the skin and hair.

Before using acetone, we recommend using dish soap and a warm water mixture. Also, use this chemical as a last resort. This substance should only be used on the skin outside of the scalp due to the potential for irritation.

You may like the acetone smell, but it can cause headaches, nausea, and a racing pulse if inhaled in large quantities. Also, since acetone is flammable, use it only in a well-ventilated area and not near open flames.

Also Read: How to Stop Hair from Tangling at Nape of Neck

Removing Uncured Epoxy

Contrary to cured epoxy, ‘uncured’ epoxy has a sticky texture and doesn’t achieve rubber-like firmness. This happens when the chemical reaction between the resin and hardener doesn’t occur entirely or is done partially. This is usually caused by inaccurate measuring or under-mixing of the solution.

As you’ve already got an idea about both types of epoxies, uncured epoxy is comparatively easier to remove. Now, visit your kitchen and pick up the tools for immediate results.

Use Vinegar

Before you pick up the vinegar bottle, let us clear one thing beforehand: Vinegar may not help remove epoxy resin in the first place. It can be helpful in conjunction with other methods to help cut through product buildup. Suppose you have already used many products on your hair before applying the epoxy resin. In that case, vinegar will help remove all that excess gunk and allow for better penetration into the scalp and strands!

Regular household vinegar, both distilled white and apple cider vinegar can help remove semi-hardened epoxy glue from hair. It’s citric acid in vinegar that gives it epoxy-removing abilities. That said, you can also use any citric acid-based hand cleaner if you aren’t feeling like using vinegar.

Usage and Precautions

Dip a cotton swab into vinegar and gently apply it to the hair. If your hair is straight, move your way down softly.

Avoid vinegar touching your scalp. Vinegar can promote overexposure to epoxy and subsequent allergic reactions when on the skin. If not removed immediately from the skin, it slightly dissolves the epoxy and then penetrates it to the protective layers of the skin, carrying epoxy into your subdermal tissues. This increases the chance of an allergic reaction and may also increase the reaction’s intensity. Any wiping or rubbing of the contact area can likely worsen the situation.

Try Vegetable Oil

Using vegetable oils provides an epoxied surface with more space to leave your hair smoothly by creating an oily residue. You can use grease or vegetable oils, especially those with more oily consistencies. They work by softening the uncured epoxy faster. One of the most significant advantages of using vegetable oil is that it reduces removal time by not causing the epoxy to stick to your hands and comb. On the contrary, the issue with both substances is that they attract more dirt and dust, which can get stuck in your hair and skin. This may lead to even further trapping of the epoxy.

Usage and Precautions

For your skincare routine, apply the oil with any other oil used in your skincare routine. Massage the oil into the hair until you notice epoxy softening. Rinse your hair with warm soapy water while combing it all through.

Ensure the oil/grease doesn’t stay on your clothes as they cause long-lasting, hard-to-remove stains if not removed immediately.

Now, just one disadvantage of using vegetable oil/grease leads us to method No. 3 that is:

Try A Degreaser

A degreaser is a cleaning agent which contains chemicals or solvents designed to cause plastic and rubber to soften. These solvents create chemical reactions with epoxy (in its semi-plastic form) and change its state, making it easier to remove.

So, which types of degreasers can be used safely and effortlessly? The top options are degreasing soap (dish soap) and dishwashing liquid.

Jump ahead to the kitchen again!

As the two items go, this Caldrea Essential Collection Dish Soap is the next best option if you want any replacement for your kitchen sink. Made in the U.S., this degreasing soap’s plant-based formula makes it earth-friendly. Plus, the soap is made up of aloe vera gel, making it gentler for your hands and, of course, for your gorgeous hair!

For the dishwashing liquid, we recommend Dawn’s New EZ-Squeeze Dishwashing Liquid which can even be used to clean items beyond the kitchen sink. Based on sales, this is America’s No.1 dish Liquid.

Usage and Precautions

First, create a water-dishwashing soap/liquid solution you use in your kitchen. You then need to take a cloth and soak it in the solution. A regular skin towel is the best option due to its water-soaking ability. Wrap the epoxied hair into the towel while ensuring no more than two layers of the towel. Give the wrap a snake-like shape by straightening your hair up inside it. Join the two corners of the towel and grab both altogether in one hand. Use the other hand to press the towel outside, ensuring the saturated solution reaches the hair. When pressing, gently tighten the towel while contracting and pulling your hair outwards as you pinch your skin outside your dress. After this process, unwrap the towel and see if the epoxy gets softened. If not, repeat the process. You may have to repeat the process thrice in one row to take the epoxy to the point of removal. Use the comb to remove it.

Once done, wash your hair as soon as possible. Dishwashing liquid is a chemical that isn’t meant to be on your hair for longer. You may experience roughness and dryness in your hair if the product remains on your hair for longer.

Also Read: Best Hair Dryers According to Your Hair Type

Now, Let’s Pick Up Something Delicious from Your Kitchen

Another way to remove epoxy resin from hair and scalp is by using an egg-white mask. Have you already been using it to nourish your hair? This time use it to get out of trouble!

An egg-white mask can soften up the epoxy enough that it will come out. However, this method can take a while, and you can try applying mashed potatoes or mayonnaise if you’re running short on time or cannot find any egg whites.

Use Denatured Alcohol/Ethanol

Of course, not in your kitchen; you’ll find this product in your first aid box. Though ethanol doesn’t work on a fully cured epoxy, it can thin a semi-hardened epoxy faster.

Usage and Precautions

Soak a neat cloth with ethanol and wipe your hair as you clean up a wound. Do it for a maximum of 5-10 minutes. If the epoxy doesn’t soften enough to be removed, leave wiping for a couple of minutes since the constant interaction of ethanol with hair can cause your hair to get overly dry. Give a second turn, and you’ll soon notice epoxy getting softened.

What to Do Afterwards?

Let’s first say ‘Happy Freedom Day’ to your gorgeous hair! Now is the time to revive the glory it may have just recently lost.

  • Rinse your entire hair using hot water, not a shampoo-wash now.
  • Once thoroughly wet, give a second hot-water wash using shampoo. Clean your hair as you usually would.
  • Condition, comb, and enjoy!

Safety Precautions When Removing Epoxy Out of Hair

  • Asking for help is a strength, not a weakness! Though you’re smart enough to handle this mess, asking someone to cooperate can save you time and your hair. 
  • Avoid your hands from coming in contact with epoxy, or you’ll soon be searching ‘how to get epoxy out of the skin,’ not ‘hair.’
  • If epoxy still exists, go for a new haircut. If you want to turn evil into worse, try to do it yourself, even if you’re a bit good at getting a haircut. Otherwise, appoint a professional hairstylist who is a geek at handling such scenarios.

Important Questions

What Dissolves Dried Epoxy from Hair?

Amongst all the items above, acetone wins the race when dissolving dried/cured epoxy. You can also use the heat of a hair dryer or heat gun to soften the epoxy and then use vinegar and ethanol to remove that semi-hardened epoxy easily.

How to Get Epoxy Off the Skin?

Concerning items, in particular, vinegar, vegetable oil, egg whites, and dishwashing liquid go very well when removing softened epoxy. Again, if epoxy is cured/hardened like rubber, you first need to melt it til it becomes semi-hardened. Below are the dos and don’ts for removing epoxy from the skin.

  • Don’t Scratch – Avoid scratch-removing epoxy using your nails or any other sharp object. This will cause your skin, hair, and skin’s upper layer to get damaged. Believe us; it’s excruciating.
  • Avoid chemical rubbing – Make sure you don’t rub it onto your skin using chemicals like acetone or ethanol. Instead, ‘wipe it out the way you clean a wound.
  • Touch it not – Avoid touching your epoxied skin to other surfaces like your clothes, hair, and other skin areas.

What Chemical Will Remove Epoxy?

Though there are many chemicals, a few are considered the most effective. These include acetone (a formula for nail polish remover), denatured alcohol (ethanol), and methylated spirit. However, the natural remedies mentioned above may take some extra time to remove epoxy than chemicals, but it’s still worth a use concerning your safety and ease of use.

Does Rubbing Alcohol Stain Clothes?

Though rubbing alcohol is used to remove stains, it can cause stains on clothes. This alcohol is not pure isopropyl alcohol; it contains other ingredients like dye, which can leave a dye stain on the fabric. The other way this can leave stains is its characteristic of being a mild bleach, similar to other forms of alcohol such as vodka or isopropyl alcohol.

Final Thoughts

Getting epoxy in your hair isn’t the end of the world. If followed right, just a few simple tips and methods can surely make you – and of course, your hair – cheer at the end of the day! Also, remind yourself that you naturally lose a few strands each day, but getting epoxy-free may lose you more than a few. Anyhow, “better to lose a few than a daunting wholesome!”

Also Read: How to Dry Your Hair When Camping?

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