Mayonnaise, which is chemical free and safer for children, can be used to rid your child of lice. The method of action is assumed to be asphyxiation. Nits seem to come off easier after a mayonnaise shampoo. Patients will be louse-free and conditioned in one process.

Instructions for Mayonnaise Shampooing:

  • Use only 100% real mayonnaise, not light, low-fat, fat-free, or even salad dressing like Miracle Whip.
  • Apply generously to hair, making sure all the hair is saturated.
  • Cover the hair with plastic wrap or a shower cap for at least 2.5 hours. Never leave young children unattended with plastic head covering in place.
  • Rinse out with warm water and shampoo.
  • Pick out dead nits from the scalp for the next few days until they are all gone.

Your Checklist to Banish Lice

  1. Have you removed all the eggs? No matter what the products say, NONE of them kill ALL the eggs, and it is not possible to tell by looking which ones are dead. Eggs are a major source of reinfestation. Use a lice comb to remove all the eggs. This is time consuming and difficult, but IT CAN BE DONE. The children that retain nits (eggs) must be checked frequently because they are so often reinfested.
  2. Have you checked your child’s playmates for head lice?
  3. Have you notified the school whenever you find that your child is infested? This allows the school to check the class for other cases, make modifications in classroom routines if necessary, and may prevent reinfestation in your child.
  4. Have you vacuumed thoroughly? Carpets, upholstered furniture, mattresses, and car upholstery must be included.
  5. Have you put all bed pillows in the dryer on the hot setting for 20 minutes or closed in a plastic bag for 2 weeks?
  6. Have you washed all clothes and jackets in hot water or dry-cleaned them?
  7. Have you washed all stuffed animals that children play of sleep with? If they are not washable, have you put them in a plastic bag with a twist tie for 2 weeks?
  8. Have you washed, or bagged for 2 weeks, all hats?
  9. Did you wash ALL combs and brushes in very hot water and household bleach?
  10. Did you treat the whole family at one time, even though you might not have found lice on all of them?
  11. Have you eliminated sleepovers until you are sure that head lice is not a problem for your children and/or your friends? If you suspect that the children your child sits with on the bus or at school are a source, call the school and ask that the children be checked for head lice.

Download Lice Treatment Instruction Sheet


 Return to the Childhood Illness Guide.