Banishing Bad Hair Days since 1997!™

Weird Hair Remedies: Toothpaste, Vinegar & Tomato Products


One of the very first questions that I ever received for my AskKaren column was how to remove hair color that had stained the skin around the temples of the hair. Hmmm, good question.

I got on the phone and called the hair experts and they all told me that you can get a special formula at most beauty supply stores (especially at Sally Beauty) that is designed to remove hair color stains.

Toothpaste Works Great For Hair Color Stains

I also discovered that a good hair tip if you are coloring your CrestToothpaste.jpg (5980 bytes) hair at home is to use a thin layer of a Vaseline or petroleum type of product to coat the skin around your hairline and prevent any staining.

Well prevention is always the best medicine but I still like to be prepared in emergencies. So I continued to ponder and research the problem.

Finally a color expert at a hair show told me that "toothpaste never fails" for safely removing hair color stains from the skin. I was amazed.

The color expert went on to tell me that some of the hair dye removers you can buy at places like Sally's Beauty Supply can be harsh and cause a reaction to some skin types. Although most people can safely use the hair dye remover, in a few cases it will cause the skin to be irritated.

She explained that she uses toothpaste because it contains just enough abrasive ingredients to safely remove the stain without any harm to sensitive skin.

Applying Toothpaste To Hair Color Stains

To remove hair color stains simply use a regular tube of toothpaste, apply a small dab to your finger and gently rub the toothpaste over the stained area of the skin. Rinse with lukewarm water. Repeat until the stain is removed.

There is no need to use a special type of toothpaste. Plain Crest or other similar brands work just as well.

As luck would have it, I received another questions about hair color stains shortly after the toothpaste discovery. I recommended this tip to the Hair Boutique visitor and she reported "great results".

Tomato Juice To Remove Rotten Odors

The first time I heard of tomato juice being used as a "hair remedy" it was on the Jerry Seined Show. Elaine and her hair had fallen victim to a persistent smell that was beyond horrible. After trying just about everything to remove the odor, Elaine was subjected to the "tomato juice" treatment.

Depending on how bad the odor, you can either pour undiluted tomato juice on the hair and let it soak into the hair for 10-15 minutes, or you can dilute 1 part tomato juice to 10 parts water.

If All Else Fails: Vinegar Will Probably Do The Trick

Dire measures call for dire treatments. If your hair has soaked up an odor that the tomato juice won't remove, you can apply 1 part apple cider vinegar to 10 parts of spring water. Pour carefully through the hair. Make sure to avoid the eye area.

Do not rinse with water or the odor may return. Instead, let the vinegar dry on the hair. Wait at least 6 hours, overnight is preferred, and then shampoo and completely rinse the hair. If the odor remains, repeat again.

Ketchup Neutralizes Green Hair

This remedy is one of my favorites and I have had lots of feedback that it works. Blonde hair that has turned green from too much exposure to pool chemicals or sun responds well to the ketchup treatment.

It is fairly simple to do. Apply real ketchup to the hair. Work it in carefully with your fingers or a very wide toothed comb. Leave the ketchup on your hair for 20-30 minutes. Shampoo and rinse with cold water.

Depending on the amount of green this treatment may need to be done more than once.

The down side to this treatment is that the smell can be a little overpowering. Like all the other treatments, it can also be messy.


Sometimes the natural approach to dealing with hair care problems can work just as well as expensive formulas. It makes sense that simple foods work well for many beauty treatments and recipes.

All women since the beginning of time have known the secrets of using various foods to enhance beauty, resolve skin and hair problems and provide solutions to common problems.

If you want to talk more about this or other hair care articles on or anywhere else, please post a message on's Hair Talk Forums.

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