Alcohol is commonly used as an at-home treatment for lice. It is believed that alcohol can kill lice by dehydrating them and suffocating them. However, studies have shown mixed results when it comes to the effectiveness of alcohol against lice infestations. In this article, we will discuss whether or not alcohol can indeed kill lice and the variations of using it as an effective treatment.

Alcohol has been used as an at-home remedy for lice for many years. People believe that it can be an effective way to eliminate a lice infestation. In theory, the alcohol would dehydrate the lice and cause them to suffocate. However, there is no scientific evidence to support this belief.

Lice are small, parasitic insects that live on the scalp and feed on the blood of humans. They can also be found in other areas of the body, including pubic hair, eyelashes, and eyebrows. Lice are usually spread through contact with another person or through sharing personal items such as hats, combs, or towels.

Lice have three stages in their life cycle: egg (nits), nymphs, and adults. The eggs hatch into nymphs in 7 to 10 days. Nymphs then mature into adult lice after 9 to 12 days. Adult lice can survive up to 30 days on a human host. All three stages require human blood in order to survive.

The most common symptom of lice infestation is an itchy scalp caused by an allergic reaction to the saliva of the louse when it feeds on the scalp. Other symptoms include red bumps or sores on the head or neck and visible nits (lice eggs) attached to hair shafts near the scalp.

Lifespan of Lice

The lifespan of lice depends on the type and the environment in which they live. Head lice, for example, typically live for up to 30 days on a person’s scalp. During this time, female head lice can lay up to 10 eggs per day, which hatch after 7 to 10 days. Once hatched, the nymphs reach adulthood within 9 to 12 days and start laying eggs themselves.

Body lice have a similar lifespan to head lice but are typically found on clothes and bedding instead of the scalp. They can survive for up to 28 days away from their human host and lay up to 8 eggs per day when they find a suitable place to live.

Pubic lice usually have the shortest life span of all types of lice — only 15 days — but they can still lay around 5 eggs per day when they have a suitable host.

In general, all types of lice thrive in warm, moist environments and need access to blood in order to survive. Without these conditions, their lifespan is significantly reduced and they may die within 1 or 2 days.

Therefore, it is important to take precautions such as regularly washing bedding and clothing at high temperatures in order to reduce the risk of infestation from any type of louse.

How Do You Get Lice?

Lice are tiny parasitic insects that feed on human blood and can cause itchiness and irritation. They can be difficult to spot, but there are ways to protect yourself from becoming infested. The most common way to get lice is through direct contact with someone who already has them. Sharing clothing, hats, or bedding with an infected person can easily spread lice from person to person.

You can also become infected by coming into contact with items that have been previously used by someone who has lice. This includes furniture, carpets, or towels, as well as combs or brushes that were used on an infected person’s hair. It’s important to remember that lice cannot jump or fly; they must be transferred from one person or object to another.

The best way to prevent the spread of lice is to avoid contact with other people who may be infested. If you think someone you know has lice, it’s important not to share any of their belongings and to take preventive measures such as washing all clothes and bedding in hot water and using a vacuum cleaner on carpets and furniture.

Getting Rid of Lice

The first step in getting rid of lice is to identify the type of lice infestation you have. Common types of lice include head lice, body lice, and pubic lice. Head lice are typically found on the scalp and around the ears, while body lice are usually found on clothing and bedding. Pubic lice are usually found in the pubic area. Once you have identified the type of infestation, you can take steps to treat it.

The next step is to treat the infestation using a variety of methods. The most common method for treating head lice is to use an over-the-counter shampoo that contains permethrin or pyrethrins. These shampoos should be used according to the instructions on the package. For body and pubic lice, it may be necessary to use a prescription medication such as a topical cream or lotion. It is important to follow your doctor’s instructions when using these medications.

In addition to treating an infestation with medications, there are several other measures that can help prevent a recurrence. These include washing bedding and clothing in hot water and drying them in high heat; vacuuming carpets and furniture; avoiding sharing personal items such as combs, brushes, hats, and clothing; keeping long hair tied back; avoiding close contact with people who have had an active infestation; and avoiding sharing personal items such as combs or brushes with others.

Finally, it is important to inspect yourself regularly for signs of new or recurring infestations. If any signs are noticed, it is important to seek treatment right away in order to prevent further spread of the infestation. By following these steps, you can effectively get rid of lice and avoid future outbreaks.

Can Alcohol Kill Lice?

Alcohol has long been used as a home remedy to treat lice infestation. Many people swear by rubbing alcohol as an effective way to kill lice, but it is important to understand the effectiveness of alcohol and how it is used to treat lice.

Alcohol does have some ability to kill lice, but it is not a reliable treatment alone. When applied directly to the scalp, alcohol can act as a deterrent and discourage lice from laying eggs and moving around. However, alcohol does not typically penetrate the hard outer shell of a louse, meaning that even if the louse comes into contact with the alcohol, it will not be killed.

Additionally, alcohol can cause skin irritation when applied directly to the scalp for extended periods of time. It is important to note that while rubbing alcohol may be effective at killing some adult head lice on contact, it will not get rid of all of them or their eggs. Applying rubbing alcohol may also cause skin irritation if left on too long or if you reapply multiple times.

The best way to use rubbing alcohol as a treatment for lice infestations is by using it in conjunction with other methods such as vacuuming carpets and furniture thoroughly and washing clothes in hot water. This will help ensure that all traces of lice are removed from your environment so that reinfestation does not occur.

In conclusion, while rubbing alcohol can be used as part of a comprehensive plan to get rid of head lice, it should not be relied upon solely for its effectiveness in killing adult or nymphal head lice or their eggs. If you suspect you have an infestation of head lice, consult your doctor immediately for advice on how best to treat the problem.

Does Rubbing Alcohol Kill Lice?

Rubbing alcohol is a commonly used product in many households and often used as an effective treatment against lice. It is known to have antiseptic and drying properties that can help to remove lice from the scalp. Many people believe that rubbing alcohol can be used as a remedy for lice, although it does not always work for everyone.

Rubbing alcohol works by dehydrating the lice, which causes them to die. The rubbing alcohol must be applied directly to the scalp and left on for at least 30 minutes before it can take full effect. Depending on the severity of the infestation, multiple applications may be necessary. Additionally, some individuals may need to use a nit comb after applying the rubbing alcohol in order to fully remove any remaining eggs or lice from their scalp.

Although rubbing alcohol can effectively kill lice, it is important to keep in mind that repeated use of rubbing alcohol could cause irritation or dryness on the scalp. Additionally, it should never be used on children under two years of age or pregnant women due to its flammability and potential health risks associated with its use.

It is also important to note that while rubbing alcohol can kill lice, it will not prevent them from returning if they are still present in your environment. Therefore, it is critical to take additional steps such as cleaning your home and washing all bedding in hot water in order to reduce the risk of re-infestation.

Overall, using rubbing alcohol as a remedy for lice has mixed results and should only be utilized if other methods have failed. It is important to speak with your doctor or pharmacist before using this method as an effective treatment for lice infestations.

Does Denatured Alcohol Kill Lice?

Denatured alcohol is a form of ethanol that has been made unfit for human consumption by adding additives like methanol and pyridine. It is commonly used in a variety of household and commercial products, such as cleaners and solvents. Some people have suggested that denatured alcohol can be used to kill lice, but there is no scientific evidence to support this claim.

Denatured alcohol is often used in cleaning products because it has the ability to dissolve grease and dirt. However, its effectiveness against pests, including lice, has not been scientifically tested or proven. Therefore, it cannot be definitively stated whether or not denatured alcohol kills lice.

In general, the most effective way to kill lice is with an insecticide specifically designed for use against these parasites. Insecticides are highly toxic substances and should only be used according to the instructions provided on their labels. It is also important to note that insecticides are not always effective against certain species of lice, so you may need to consult a pest control professional if you are dealing with a stubborn infestation.

For those who would like to try alternative methods of killing lice, there are some home remedies that may help reduce the number of parasites present in your home or on your body. These include regular combing with a fine-toothed comb and applying essential oils like tea tree oil or lavender oil directly onto affected areas of the skin or scalp. However, these treatments will not necessarily eradicate all lice from your environment; they may only reduce the number present at any one time.

Overall, denatured alcohol has not been scientifically proven to kill lice and should not be used as an insecticide. If you are dealing with an infestation of these pests, it is best to consult a pest control professional or use an insecticide specifically designed for use against them.

Is It Safe to Use Alcohol on a Child With Lice?

Using alcohol on a child with lice is not recommended. Alcohol can be irritating and drying to the skin, which can lead to further irritation and discomfort. Additionally, alcohol does not kill lice and their eggs, so it will not provide any long-term relief from the infestation.

It is important for parents to use an appropriate lice treatment product specifically designed for children. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends using products containing either permethrin or pyrethrin as these are safe for use on children over the age of two months. These products should be used exactly according to the instructions on the package and repeated if necessary after seven days.

It is also important to take precautions to prevent the spread of lice from one child to another. This includes avoiding sharing combs, brushes, hats, scarves, headbands, and other personal items that may have come in contact with lice or their eggs. It is also helpful to vacuum carpets and upholstered furniture regularly and wash bedding in hot water (at least 130°F) weekly.

In summary, using alcohol on a child with lice is not recommended as it can cause further irritation and discomfort without providing any long-term relief from the infestation. It is best to use an appropriate lice treatment product specifically designed for children instead, followed by taking precautions such as avoiding sharing personal items and cleaning frequently touched surfaces regularly.


In conclusion, alcohol can be an effective treatment for lice and nits. It is safe to use on children and adults, but it should not be used as a primary treatment. If you decide to use alcohol, it is important to thoroughly wet the hair and scalp with a mixture of alcohol and water. Leave the mixture on for at least 15 minutes before rinsing it off. Alcohol kills lice by dehydrating them, but it does not kill eggs or nits. For that reason, it is important to use other methods of treatment in addition to alcohol in order to eradicate the lice completely.

It is also important to remember that regular cleaning of bedding, clothing, and other items that may have come into contact with lice can help reduce the chances of re-infestation. The best way to prevent lice infestations is to practice good hygiene habits and avoid sharing personal items such as towels, hats, combs, and brushes with others.

A to Z

A to Z


I am Tom Brett and my wish is to give you the best experience about the alcohol topics.

The article is written by me where I share my passion for this topic and I hope I have shed some light to you on this topic.

If you would like to learn more about me check the about page here.

A to Z Alcohol

Check all A to Z Alcohol Categories


Pin It on Pinterest

Share This