A while ago I dedicated a post to dealing with your kids getting lice when you’re on vacation. You could also discover the creepy crawlies when you’re already on vacation, though now we check before leave for any place. Since then, I have made some awesome discoveries about getting rid of lice, because the olive oil & blow drying approach wasn’t working. The kids kept passing it to each other, and after three months of struggling against the disgusting creatures, we decided there had to be a better solution. But where did my kid catch lice during summer, you may ask. They caught it at Ikea in the kids’ area *insert sigh*. Through this whole process, I discovered two tools that will make killing lice a mere inconvenience instead of a horrendous nightmare.
The Best Way to Get Rid of Lice
In my previous post I said that lice shampoos do not work. I am not changing my opinion, the pesticide laden shampoo you can find at drug stores across the world do not work. But my husband did some research and found that there is a specific enzyme that dissolves lice and nits, while being totally safe for humans. In fact, pregnant and breastfeeding moms can use this enzyme shampoo, and you don’t have to wait a certain number of days between uses on your kids. You can use it every day if you want to, although I think that would be overkill. Pun intended. This shampoo only needs to be in your child’s hair for 15-20 minutes (each brand has slightly different instructions), and unlike the enzyme foam, there will be no live lice after use. In the US this brand seems to be the best value for the amount:
and here is the European equivalent which I had to order from the UK… we couldn’t find any enzyme shampoo in our country. We tried the enzyme foam, but it didn’t completely kill the live bugs and did nothing to the eggs.
Lyclear Shampoo (this shampoo comes with a comb, but it was completely useless)
Depending on whether you are ordering the comb from the US or Europe, the comb has two different names, but is exactly the same. I purchased them from different continents and compared them. The best lice comb in the US is called the:
On the other side of the pond, the comb is called the
This comb is unique in that is removes lice and nits. No other comb has come close to removing any nits, and this thing works! For our younger daughter, it got the eggs out even when her hair was dry. She has thick hair, as in, even the individual strands are thick. For our older daughter the comb did not remove eggs while her hair was dry, it needed to be wet. Both combs recommend wet hair with conditioner rubbed in. We got a plastic hair parter and some banana clips from our local hair supply place, and sectioned the hair into four to six sections. Once you run the comb through the hair, wipe it on a napkin or paper towel before moving to the next strands of hair. The Nitty Gritty comb comes with a lifetime warrantee. If the comb breaks, you can send it to them and they will send you a replacement.
Delousing the House
You still need to wash and dry their bedding and any clothes they wore while the lice infestation occurred, but once you treat them with the shampoo and comb, the clean sheets you put on don’t need to be changed again.
An Extra Step Because I’m Paranoid
My ongoing battles with lice have created a certain amount of paranoia. Because of this, I choose to flat iron the kids’ hair after all of the treatment to heat any existing eggs to death. I made sure to stay close to the scalp because they eggs are usually about 10 cm from their head. I don’t know if any nits existed after using the combs, but I wanted to be extra careful.
Next Time I Travel
I plan to create a “Lice Travel Kit” with one comb, a small amount of enzyme shampoo in my toiletry bag, a plastic parting comb, and six banana clips just in case. Being away from home and not having what you need to kill these little buggers is stressful and unnecessary. Becoming an expert on treating lice was never something I aspired to, but it happened. Learn from my mistakes and create your own “Lice Travel Kit” if you will be traveling for prolonged periods.
May your future travels be fun and lice free.