Skip to main content

Dealing with head lice is a challenge for anyone, but for individuals with thick and curly hair, the process can be especially difficult. The texture and volume of thick, curly hair can make it difficult to thoroughly inspect and comb through, creating a potential haven for lice and their eggs (nits).

However, with the right approach and tools, effectively removing head lice from thick and curly hair is entirely achievable. Below is a step-by-step guide to tackling head lice in such hair types, ensuring you can rid your or your child’s hair of these pesky parasites.

Step 1: Preparation

Before you begin the treatment process, gather the necessary tools and prepare the environment. You’ll need:

  • A fine-toothed metal lice comb, specifically designed for lice and nit removal.
  • A conditioner or a lice treatment product suitable for thick and curly hair.
  • White paper towels or a disposable cloth to wipe the comb between strokes.
  • Good lighting and a comfortable place to sit.

Tip: Have your child wear an old T-shirt to catch any drips during the process.

Step 2: Detangling

Apply a conditioner/water mix to help detangle any knots. Comb through the hair using a wide-tooth comb or detangling brush. Spraying on a mix of conditioner and water won’t just make it easier to comb through the hair; it will also immobilize the lice temporarily. 

Step 3: Sectioning the Hair

Sectioning is crucial for thick and curly hair. Divide the hair into manageable sections and secure each section with clips or hair ties. Work with one section at a time to ensure you’re combing through each part thoroughly.

Step 4: Applying Treatment

If using a lice treatment product, follow the instructions carefully. Some products are applied to dry hair, while others work better on damp hair. The aim is to suffocate the lice and make the hair slippery, allowing the comb to glide more easily.

Step 5: Combing

Place the metal lice comb at the scalp of the first section, ensuring it’s in full contact with the skin, and draw it down the entire length of the hair. After each stroke, wipe the comb on a white paper towel to remove any lice or nits. This also allows you to monitor your progress. Be meticulous and comb through each section several times from different angles.

Step 6: Rinsing and Repeating

After combing through all sections, rinse out the treatment product (if used) or conditioner. Inspect the hair and scalp again under good lighting. It may be necessary to repeat the combing process, especially in cases of severe infestation.

Step 7: Follow-up

Lice eggs (nits) can be more challenging to remove and may require several combing sessions over the course of 7-10 days to ensure all have been eliminated. Repeat the wet combing process every few days until you’re confident that all lice and nits have been removed.

Additional Tips

  • Consistency and patience are key. The process may need to be repeated several times, especially if dealing with a severe infestation.
  • Avoid sharing personal items such as hats, brushes and hair accessories to prevent re-infestation.
  • Inform close contacts about the infestation so they can also check and treat head lice if necessary.

Treating Head Lice in Thick, Curly Hair

Removing head lice from thick and curly hair requires patience, the right tools and a systematic approach. While it can be more challenging due to the hair’s texture and volume, success is entirely possible with meticulous combing and consistency in treatment. Remember, head lice are a common issue and no cause for shame. With diligence and care, you can overcome an infestation and return to lice-free living. To shop for hair lice products delivered straight to your home, visit the Shop Here Now tab on or visit our Amazon store