How to Get Spray Paint Out of Hair


Last updated: June 2, 2023

Learn these easy-to-follow methods to get rid of unwanted paint stains .

How to get spray paint out of hair

You just finished your spray paint project and noticed the paint in your hair. Do you know how to get spray paint out of hair?

We already know that spray paints can get messy, yet we never expect them to land on the hair. If this is your predicament, we assure you it is removable.

Read to the end to find out how to get spray paint out of your hair based on the paint type. We’ll also answer related questions and other helpful details.

How to get spray paint out of hair

First, try washing it off using warm water and dish soap. If that doesn’t work, soften the paint using olive oil and then scrape it off using a fine-tooth comb. For stubborn paint, you may have to remove it using WD-40 or paint thinners.

What Happens if Spray Paint Gets in Your Hair?

You’ll notice a different color, greasy, and rough texture when spray paint gets on your hair. If the paint soaks into the roots of the strands, you’ll experience irritation like a burning sensation or itchiness on your scalp.

If the paint stays too long on your hair, it will damage your hair by causing dryness, breakage, and split ends.

What to Consider Before Removing Spray Paint From Your Hair

Before you settle on a method for getting paint out of hair, consider the following.

  1. First, always find out the type of paint. Look at the can to determine if the paint stuck on your hair is oil or water-based, latex or acrylic. Once you know the paint’s composition, you’ll know the right removal product.

  2. Next, find out what tools can help you remove the paint faster. Picking paint with your nails may be a default response, but using a fine-toothed comb is more effective.

  3. Finally, consider your safety with the products you use when removing paint. Acetone, paint thinners, or WD-40 will remove paint from your hair in record time. However, they are chemicals with serious health side effects. Therefore use them with caution.

How to Get Spray Paint Out of Hair

The first natural response is wiping with a cloth, scraping with your fingers, or washing with warm water and shampoo. However, when the paint is dry, it can prove more difficult to remove.

Here’s how different products will remove different types of paint from your hair. Keep reading.

How to Remove Water-Based Spray Paint From Your Hair

This type of paint is the easiest to remove; however, handle your hair gently to minimize breakage.

Plain Water and Dishwashing Liquid

If the paint is still wet on your hair, grab your dawn dish soap from the kitchen and go to the bathroom sink.

Wet your hair in the shower and then lather it with dish soap. Gently massage your hair and let it soak for a few minutes. Start scrubbing the paint off your hair using pulling strokes from the root to the ends of your strands. You can use your nails or a comb to get it done.

Rinse your hair and check if there’s more paint left. Repeat the process if necessary.

Normal Hair Shampoo

Consider washing your hair with shampoo if you accidentally got spray paint on it. This process is like washing with dishwashing soap—wet your hair with warm water and lather an alcohol-based shampoo.

Rinse your hair with warm water, and dry it with a towel. Repeat the cleaning procedure if not much paint came off.

Use Toothpaste

Yes, you read that right. If you have plain white toothpaste, it will work against the spray paint and lift it off your hair.

Squeeze the toothpaste on your fingers and then apply it to parts of your hair with paint. Let it sit on your hair for at least 15 minutes. Rub the paste against the paint until it falls off your hair strands. Add more paste if necessary.

Wash your hair with clarifying shampoo, rinse thoroughly and then dry and moisturize.

How to Get Latex/ Acrylic Spray Paint Off Hair

If the accidental spray paint on your hair is latex or acrylic paint, use one or a combination of these methods to get the paint out of blonde hair.

Soak in Warm Water

Latex paint is water soluble and a lot easier to remove. This method would also work when trying to remove water-based paint in your hair.

You’ll need to soak your hair in warm water for a prolonged period of time. You can do this while standing under a shower head, but it would be more relaxing if you took a dip in the bathtub. The warm water will soften and dissolve the paint in your hair.

Once the paint falls off, wash your hair like you usually do, and then dry and moisturize.

Scrape it Off with Your Nails

If the paint is loose but clings to your hair after soaking, try scraping it off with your nails. This method will remove spray paint from both short and long hair.

Grab a section of your hair and scrape the paint from the roots toward the ends. Work gently to reduce hair tangles and breakage. Rinse your hair once it’s free of paint.

Fine Tooth Comb

Detangling hair strands covered in the paint can take forever if you use your fingers. Use a wide-tooth comb to section the hair and brush off large chunks of the paint spray.

When you have tiny strands or scattered traces of paint left, comb through your hair to remove them. It will be easier on your arms and generally a lot faster.

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)

This is another product you can use to get paint out of hair. It’s often used to treat dandruff and deep cleanse locks. It’s a gentle product on your hair and scalp but strong against any impurities like paint spray.

Wet your curls with water and then apply ACV to the area of your hair with spray paints. Wear a shower cap and let it sit on your hair for 15 minutes. Comb the paint off your hair, wash and moisturize your hair after removing paint.

Use WD-40

Acrylic or latex spray paints will lift off your hair faster using this lubricating spray. Spray a little bit of this product onto your hair and let it sit for a few minutes.

Scrape the loose paint off your hair using a fine-tooth comb. Once the paint is gone, wash your hair thoroughly with a clarifying shampoo and near hot water.

WD-40 is a potent paint remover and lubricant for squawky doors. Therefore, use it carefully while removing spray paint from your hair.

How to Get Spray Paint Out of Hair

How to Get Rid of Oil-Based Spray Paint on Hair

Removing oil-based paints from hair is easier when using the right products.

Baby Oil, Olive Oil, or Coconut Oil

Use the power of coconut, olive, or baby oil to get oil-based paint off your hair. The advantage is that these oils are great for hydrating your hair and scalp.

Reach for any of these oils and apply them liberally to your hair. Cover your hair with plastic wrap for a minimum of 30 minutes, or leave it on for as long as possible.

The oil will moisturize your hair and soften the dry paint. Brush or comb the loose paint off your hair.

Peanut Butter

I bet you didn’t know that this tasty spread can save your hair from the damage of spray paints. You can use the chunky or smooth one. The edible oils in this product will soften the paint, while the chunky pieces of peanut will be the abrasive that scrubs paint off your curls.

Apply it to your hair; leave it for about 15 minutes before washing it off.

If this method proves too slow for your liking, then a potent product like paint thinner will do the job instantly.

Paint Thinner

The popular products under this category include mineral spirits, acetone, turpentine, etc. These potent chemicals are often used to remove paint from every other surface except a part of your body. Therefore, use it sparingly to avoid further damage to your hair.

Where possible, have someone else use it to help you remove the paint from hair and minimize contact with the skin. To use it, soak a cotton ball or a soft cloth in paint thinner and then wipe off the paint from hair. Keep wiping gently until all the paint is removed.

Deep cleanse your hair with shampoo and rinse thoroughly. Condition and moisturize your hair to rehydrate your hair and scalp.

How to Get Paint Off Your Hair When Unsure of the Type of Paint

If the paint you used gets in your hair and you don’t know its type, we’ll show you how to get it off.

First, pick the paint off your hair using your fingers or a comb. While this method is chemical-free, it calls for patience.

Next, soak your hair in warm water for 10 minutes. Then lather the painted area on with dish soap or regular shampoo. Gently rub and pull the paint with your nails to remove it. Rinse off with warm water.

If the paint proves difficult to remove, try softening it with coconut or olive oil. You can also opt for chemical paint removers like WD-40, nail polish removers, or other paint thinners available. However, use these chemicals with caution.

How to Get Spray Paint Out of Blonde Hair

Begin by soaking your hair in warm water for about 10 minutes, then cleanse with shampoo. Next, try dissolving the paint using apple cider vinegar, toothpaste, peanut butter, or coconut oil. If you still have paint in your hair, use acetone or mineral spirits to get it off.

How to Prevent Spray Paint From Getting on Hair

Prevent spray paint from getting on your hair by wearing a shower cap, plastic wrap, or a faux head wrap using a fabric you don’t mind getting painted. By all means, cover every inch of your hair just like you wear gloves, goggles, and a respirator mask to protect yourself.

What is the Best Way to Take Care of Hair After Removing Spray Paint?

Deep conditioning treatment is the best way to care for your hair after paint removal. This will hydrate your hair and scalp and promote hair growth in length and volume.

You can make a DIY conditioning treatment using olive oil, avocado, and essential oils. Mash the avocado into a soft puree; add olive oil and essential oil. Mix well. Apply this treatment to dry hair and work the product from the ends toward the scalp.

Gently massage your hair and scalp, and then cover it with a shower cap. Let the treatment work for 15 minutes and then wash it off with a hydrating shampoo. Towel-dry your hair and then moisturize and style it as you usually would.

Still, you can go to the salon for professional hair treatment.

FAQs – How to Get Spray Paint Out of Hair

How long does it take to get spray paint out of hair

Removing spray paint from hair can take between 10 minutes to several hours. This duration varies depending on the type, and amount of paint stuck on your hair. For example, water-soluble paints can lift off hair in less than an hour, while oil-based spray paints can take hours.

Is Spray Paint Permanent on Hair?

Spray paint is not permanent on hair; it only lasts as long as you allow. You can remove spray paint on your hair from the moment the coloring begins. However, if the paint used is dry and more stubborn to remove with mild products, you’ll get it off with potent chemicals.

Can You Remove Spray Paint Out of Hair With Hairdryer?

I believe you can, only that it is a terrible idea. Usually, you’d heat up paint on a surface and then scrape it off with a putty knife. However, heating paint on your hair might soften it and spread to other hair strands.

How to Get Color Spray Out of Hair

Start by wetting your hair to remove loose paint from your hair. Next, cleanse the painted strands with clarifying shampoo or dishwashing soap. If that doesn’t work, apply olive oil to your hair and let it soften the paint before scraping it off with a fine-tooth comb.

Will Nail Polish Remover Get Paint Out of Hair?

Yes, nail polish remover (acetone) will break down the paint and get it out of your hair. Use this product like you would other paint thinners: Soak a cotton ball in nail polish remover and use it to wipe paint off your curls.

Content Summary

Having learned how to get spray paint out of hair, you realize that it’s doable but will certainly test your patience.

When removing spray paint from hair, wash with warm water and shampoo. Next, try softening the paint with olive oil, toothpaste, or peanut butter. Reach for paint thinners as your last resort, and use them cautiously.

This process is tedious and can get frustrating. Therefore, spare yourself the trouble and cover your hair before painting.

Good luck!

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