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How To Get Sap Out Of Hair?

  • Post category:Hair
  • Post last modified:May 29, 2024
  • Reading time:11 mins read

Tree sap can be a sticky and stubborn substance to remove from hair, but with the right techniques and products, it can be done effectively without causing damage. This article will guide you through various methods to get sap out of hair, using both household items and specialized products.

Tree Sap

Tree sap is a viscous fluid that oozes from trees, particularly coniferous trees like pines and spruces. It can be sticky and difficult to remove once it hardens. The key to removing sap from hair is to break down its sticky components without damaging the hair.

Immediate Steps

If you find sap in your hair, it’s best to act quickly before it hardens. Here are some immediate steps you can take:

  1. Avoid Pulling: Do not try to pull the sap out as it can cause hair breakage.
  2. Separate the Affected Area: Isolate the sap-covered hair to prevent it from spreading to other parts.

Home Remedies

Several household items can effectively remove sap from hair. Here are some tried-and-true methods:

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is a popular remedy due to its oily nature, which helps break down the sap.

  1. Apply Peanut Butter: Take a generous amount of creamy peanut butter and apply it to the sap-covered area.
  2. Massage: Gently massage the peanut butter into the sap.
  3. Wait: Let it sit for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Rinse and Shampoo: Rinse out the peanut butter with warm water and follow up with a regular shampoo to remove any residue.

Olive or Coconut Oil

Oils are excellent for breaking down sap due to their greasy nature.

  1. Apply Oil: Use a tablespoon of olive or coconut oil and massage it into the sap.
  2. Let It Sit: Allow the oil to sit for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Comb Out: Use a fine-tooth comb to gently work the sap out of the hair.
  4. Shampoo: Wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo to remove the oil and sap.


Mayonnaise works similarly to oils and peanut butter.

  1. Apply Mayonnaise: Spread mayonnaise on the sap and work it in.
  2. Wait: Let it sit for 15 minutes.
  3. Rinse and Shampoo: Rinse thoroughly and shampoo to remove the mayonnaise.

Baby Oil

Baby oil is gentle and effective for sap removal.

  1. Apply Baby Oil: Saturate the sap-covered hair with baby oil.
  2. Massage: Gently massage the oil into the sap.
  3. Wait: Allow it to sit for at least 20 minutes.
  4. Comb and Shampoo: Use a comb to remove the sap and then shampoo your hair.

Specialized Products

If home remedies are not effective, you can use specialized products designed for sap removal.

Clarifying Shampoos

Clarifying shampoos are formulated to remove buildup from hair, including sap.

  1. Apply Shampoo: Use a clarifying shampoo on the affected area.
  2. Massage and Rinse: Massage it in and rinse thoroughly.
  3. Repeat if Necessary: You may need to repeat the process a few times.

Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol can dissolve sap but should be used with caution as it can dry out hair.

  1. Apply Alcohol: Dab a small amount of rubbing alcohol on a cloth and apply it to the sap.
  2. Massage: Gently massage the area.
  3. Rinse and Condition: Rinse thoroughly and use a deep conditioner to restore moisture.

Professional Help

If the sap is particularly stubborn or you are concerned about damaging your hair, consider seeking professional help from a hairdresser. They have specialized tools and products that can safely remove sap without causing harm to your hair.

Post-Sap Removal Care

After removing the sap, your hair may feel dry or damaged. Here are some tips for post-sap removal care:

  1. Deep Conditioning: Use a deep conditioning treatment to restore moisture.
  2. Avoid Heat Styling: Give your hair a break from heat-styling tools to prevent further damage.
  3. Regular Trims: Regular trims can help maintain healthy hair and prevent split ends.

Preventive Measures

To avoid getting sap in your hair in the future, consider these preventive measures:

  1. Wear a Hat: When hiking or spending time near trees, wear a hat to protect your hair.
  2. Tie Up Your Hair: Keep your hair tied up in a bun or braid to minimize exposure.
  3. Use a Scarf: Wrap a scarf around your hair for added protection.


Removing sap from hair can be challenging, but with the right approach, it can be done effectively. Whether you choose home remedies like peanut butter and oils or specialized products like clarifying shampoos and rubbing alcohol, the key is to be gentle and patient. Always follow up with proper hair care to keep your locks healthy and strong. If in doubt, seek professional help to ensure the best results.


How do you remove tree sap from hair?

Apply a generous amount of peanut butter, mayonnaise, olive oil, or conditioner to the sap-affected hair. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes to allow the oils to break down the sap. Then use a wide-tooth comb to gently work out the sap. Rinse thoroughly with shampoo and warm water. Repeat if needed. 

What is the easiest way to remove sap?

The easiest way is to use cooking spray or vegetable oil. Simply spray or apply the oil directly onto the sap-affected area, let it sit briefly, then wipe or scrub away. The oils help dissolve and loosen the sticky sap for easy removal from skin, hair, clothes, or surfaces. 

How to remove sap from fur?

Massage a pet-safe oil like vegetable, olive, or coconut oil into the sap on your pet’s fur. Let it soak for 5-10 minutes to soften the sap. Then use a wide-tooth comb to gently work out the sap. Wash with pet shampoo to remove any residue. Avoid letting your pet ingest the sap. 

What will dissolve pine sap?

Rubbing alcohol, hand sanitizer, nail polish remover, and mineral spirits are excellent solvents that can dissolve and remove pine sap. Apply the solvent directly to the sap stain, let it soak briefly, then wipe or scrub away the loosened sap. Wash thoroughly after removal. 

How effective is peanut butter in removing sap from hair?

Peanut butter is very effective for removing sap from hair due to its oil content. The oils help break down the sticky sap, allowing it to be combed or rinsed out easily. Apply peanut butter generously, let it sit for 10-15 minutes, then comb out the loosened sap before shampooing.