Cetaphil Lice Treatment:
Does it Work?

Does Cetaphil kill lice?


We've tried lice kits and nothing is working! I've heard that Cetaphil can be used as a lice treatment, is that true?

cetaphil cleanser next to the bathroom sink

Answer from a lice expert:

If you have tried other treatments that have failed, you are not alone, and it’s not your fault. The latest stats say that most parents that use over-the-counter kits still have lice even after multiple treatments! 


After no success with lice kits, some turn to home remedies. Cetaphil is one that I see a lot of people turn to in desperation. But before going down the Cetaphil route there are a few things you should know. 


So, let's talk about exactly what Cetaphil can do and cannot do when it comes to helping with head lice in this article.

Let me introduce myself...

Lice nurse helping others

Hi there! I'm Theresa, I'm a lice expert, lice coach, and Registered Nurse. I help people with lice every day! You can get rid of lice in ONE DAY at home by using the same proven professional technique that I use in my lice center.

Just follow the step-by-step videos and be done with lice by the end of the day.

Cetaphil for Lice

a bottle of cetaphil cleaner being squeezed, presumably for head lice

Why Is It So Hard to Get Rid of Lice?

Now that you know what you're looking for I want to talk briefly about your biggest worry (that your child actually has lice) and the question I get asked by parents around the world that have been battling lice….

picture of lice bug under a magnifying glass

Parents around the world are all asking me the same question…. "Why is it so much harder to get rid of lice now?"

Lice have become immune to everything that used to work in the past. Perhaps you remember your mom using a typical lice treatment or mayonnaise and that doing the trick. The new strain of head lice is no longer killed by those treatments, that’s why lice today are termed by people, “super lice,” because they are immune to those treatments. 

I’ve cured thousands of people of lice in my lice center and let me tell you, I don't do it with over-the-counter lice treatments. 

magnifying glass looking at lice eggs and nits in brown hair

Most people struggle with lice because they focus all of their attention on killing lice bugs and not enough attention on GETTING RID OF LICE!

If you want to get rid of lice you have to address all 3 of the problems of lice:

  1. Lice Bugs
  2. Lice Eggs
  3. Getting Lice Back

The best way to get rid of lice is to tackle all 3 of these problems at the same time, which is what I teach in my step-by-step video system.

So, if you discover your child HAS lice, don't panic. Just head over to the video system. Follow along with the videos and you'll be done with lice by the end of the day.

lice bug under a magnifying glass
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Is Cetaphil A Good Lice Treatment?

the words yes or no


There are loads of random people claiming different home remedies "cure" lice circulating the internet. 

The purpose of My Lice Advice is to give you the undiluted facts about home remedies and other lice treatmentsso that you can make good decisions and get rid of lice as fast as possible. 

This article focuses on the facts about Cetaphil and head lice.

cetaphil cleanser surround by head lice, presumably to be used as a cetaphil lice treatment.

Does Cetaphil Kill Lice?

the word no


Cetaphil does not kill lice.

Cetaphil does NOT kill head lice.

When you submerge lice in liquid, oil, or cream they automatically close up their “breathing holes” so that nothing can penetrate them. 

This happens with any kind of oil, liquid or cream. That's why people think olive oil and mayonnaise help with lice (spoiler though- those don't work either).

What Cetaphil does is make lice immobile and go into a “playing dead” state for a while (explained below)

Most people are fooled by that.


Cetaphil makes lice "play dead" temporarily, but they come back to life after rinsed.

Here's why people are "fooled" by Cetaphil:

Lice submerged in Cetaphil or any other oil, liquid, or cream go into a “hibernation- state” to conserve energy. Basically, they stop moving and just grip onto the hair tightly. One study terms this as “playing dead.” 

When people use Cetaphil on the head for prolonged periods, they see lice in hibernation mode and assume that lice are dead.

The studies show that lice usually remain in this hibernation state for a few hours after being removed from the liquid, oil, or cream.

This is the same with Cetaphil. Lice are at full strength and capable of breeding just as they did before soon after the Cetaphil is rinsed from the head.

Which kills lice?

Cetaphil = No!

Step-by-Step Video System = Yes!

Cetaphil does NOT kill lice bugs. Whereas, doing a professional lice treatment using the Step-by-Step Video System kills 100% of lice bugs in one session without toxic chemicals, pesticides, or lice kits.

Does Cetaphil Kill Lice Eggs (Nits)?

brunette with lice and several lice eggs, with a magnifying glass looking at lice eggs. Arrow pointing to lice eggs

Lice eggs and nits are the same thing.

To start off let's get something straight... Nits and lice eggs are the same thing! Don't make this more complicated then it needs to be. The two words (nits and lice eggs) will be used interchangeably in this article.

Cetaphil cleanser does not kill lice eggs.

People that recommend Cetaphil as a lice treatment are well-intentioned and trying to be helpful. But in my experience in the real world is that people that have Cetaphil to get rid of their lice have one thing in common:

They combed the hair with a lice comb for three weeks.

So in those cases, the credit and glory really should be given to the lice combing and nit-picking, not to the Cetaphil.

Lice eggs have a thick, waxy coating that protects them from just about everything. It is next to impossible to kill them with any chemical.

With the Cetaphil treatment blow-drying is involved, which can be helpful with dehydrating eggs. But again, then the credit should go to the blow-dryer, not the Cetaphil.


Cetaphil for Lice: The Plan

woman with white substance soaking in her hair, presumably cetaphil cleanser for head lice.

If you are not familiar with the Cetaphil lice treatment, here’s a quick rundown of how it works:

You coat your or your kid’s hair with a bottle of Cetaphil, combing it through the hair and then using a blow dryer until it’s no longer damp. The idea here is that the layer of Cetaphil will suffocate the head lice. Some sites even recommend leaving the Cetaphil on for up to eight hours before washing it out. Then, you repeat this process for three or four weeks. 

Working in my lice center, I have helped hundreds of families dealing with lice. All these families had tried multiple over-the-counter treatments and home remedies without success, including the Cetaphil treatment. 

Many have painstakingly applied and blowdried Cetaphil onto their child’s head multiple times over the course of a month, hoping that the Cetaphil would suffocate the head lice. 

However, these parents wind up disappointed and discouraged when at the end of a month of the Cetaphil regime, their child still has a head full of (live) lice.

One of my clients said it took her three hours to blow-dry the Cetaphil on her child’s head. Even after all that, her daughter still had tons of LIVE LICE crawling in her hair when I saw her the next day.

Cetaphil & The Never-Ending Cycle

Most people that use Cetaphil get caught in the horrible "Never-Ending Cycle of Lice"

Three arrows pointing down

First- You Have Lice

lice eggs, baby lice, and adult lice with arrows labeling them

When you first discover lice you have adult lice bugs, baby lice bugs, and lice eggs (also known as nits)

You Think You've Gotten Rid of It.

lice eggs (nits) and baby lice bugs

After using Cetaphil, people think they've taken care of the problem because they aren't finding lice bugs for a while.

But what they don't realize is they've missed the lice eggs and the baby bug. Lice kits and home remedies don't kill eggs, and each of those little lice eggs has a bug inside just waiting to hatch and re-infest your child again.

Then- Those Eggs HATCH!

baby lice bugs

Just like lice eggs are tiny, when lice first hatch they are teeny-tiny. In fact, they are almost invisible to the naked eye! So, it typically takes a few weeks for them to grow big enough for you to see them.

And before you know it you are infested with more baby bugs then you may have started with!

And Lice Is Back Again!

full lice infestation representation with lice eggs, baby lice bugs, and adult lice bugs

How to Avoid the Never-Ending Cycle

If you want to avoid this never-ending cycle and get rid of lice fast then check out my Step-by-Step Video System. Follow along with the videos and you can be completely done with lice in ONE DAY, no retreatments necessary.

Do you want to get rid of lice?

Bottle of Cetaphil and a lice expert with the words yes and no

Cetaphil = No!

Step-by-Step Video System = Yes!

If you want to get rid of lice then follow along with the Step-by-Step Video System and get rid of lice today!

Is Cetaphil a Good Lice Treatment?

the word no

I do believe the Cetaphil treatment regime works for some people, but, I personally have seen the Cetaphil lice treatment fail more than I have seen it succeed.

The major issue with the Cetaphil method is that most people waste about a month on this home remedy and HOURS AND HOURS of their precious time, when they could have gotten rid of lice in one day using a better method.

Even worse, at the end of a month of the Cetaphil regime have worse lice than when they started. 

If you want to get rid of lice quickly then instead follow along with my step-by-step videos here.

A lice quickly crawling through a woman's blond hair.

#1: Cetaphil Will NOT Save You Money!

several dollar bills

Don’t go the Cetaphil route thinking that you’re going to save some money on more “expensive” lice treatments--you won’t! For the Cetaphil treatment, you need several bottles of Cetaphil. For someone with crew cut or short hair, it requires 8oz. Someone with shoulder-length hair will need 12oz, and someone with long or thick hair may require two full bottles!

A bottle of Cetaphil cleanser usually costs around $10, but remember you have to repeat this process at least 3 times! For someone with long, thick hair, it may cost you $30-$50 to buy all of the Cetaphil you need for multiple treatments and it likely won't work for you. And how many people are in your family? We're talking about at least $120 for a month of torture and still having lice!

calendar indicating that one must retreat over and over within a month for cetaphil lice treatment

#2: Cetaphil Takes At LEAST 3 Weeks

Remember, in my experience, the Cetaphil treatment does not kill lice. However, let’s say that it does kill lice every time... This whole process still takes at LEAST THREE FULL WEEKS!

I know there are some out there who have been struggling with lice for a very long time, so three weeks may not seem like a big deal. For most people, though, having lice in your house for three weeks is absolutely unbearable. Why struggle for so long with something when you could have gotten rid of it in one day by following along with my Step-by-Step Videos.

#3: You Continue to Have Lice

The Cetaphil idea is that you leave lice eggs in the hair, wait for them to hatch, and then keep killing them once a week for about a month. 

You do realize that means that you’ll have lice for a month, right?

Baby lice, adult lice, it’s all the same. There are little bugs crawling in your hair for a full month. Meanwhile, you’re contagious, spreading lice to your family, friends, and classmates.

Even if all of that were acceptable to you, it would be unbearable when, after going through this process for a month, you still have lice.

This is what most people I have met experience: a month of torture and still having a full-blown lice infestation after the month is over. It’s just not worth it, is it?

How to Do A Cetaphil Lice Treatment

discouraged mother dealing with head lice

Perhaps you are saying to yourself, "Nah, I think I'll give Cetaphil a try."

If that's your plan, then I genuinely wish you the very best. Having lice is horrible, and no one should have to endure it for months on end. And I hope you don't.

But, I will caution you... that's most likely what will happen to you. Most people go from lice kit to lice kit and then from home remedy to home remedy. They think it's gone for a week or two, and then it comes back again. That's likely to be your story as well.


I don't recommend Cetaphil for lice because it doesn't kill lice or lice eggs and it takes 3 weeks!

I pride myself on being honest and only recommending things that'll help people get rid of lice. I DO NOT recommend Cetaphil for Lice.

But if you're set on it, here are the instructions:

  • Buy at least 3 bottles of Cetaphil cleanser per person
  • Put half a bottle of Cetaphil in a squirt bottle and apply it in an exact zig-zag pattern on the head.
  • Apply the other half of the bottle of Cetaphil until all of the hair is completely saturated (this may require more than one bottle depending on the thickness of your hair).
  • Blow-dry the hair with the Cetaphil in it (this can take up to three hours or more for someone with thick, long hair)
  • Leave it in the hair all day (at least eight hours)
  • Repeat the process over and over and over again for three weeks.

Summing it Up…

The Cetaphil process is time-consuming, requires multiple treatments over the course of a month, takes at least three weeks to work, and even then often doesn’t get rid of lice. 

The major issue with Cetaphil is that most people waste about a month attempting this home remedy when they could have gotten rid of lice in one day by following along with my Step-by-Step Videos.

Cetaphil is not the worst home remedy out there because it’s not terribly dangerous. 

 But, if you want to get rid of lice then I'd recommend following along with My Lice Advice Step-by-Step Video System. Just follow along and be down with lice by the end of the day! 

All the best!

lice expert

Theresa is a Registered Nurse and lice expert with years of experience curing children of lice. She owns a lice treatment center in the US which is where she perfected the Step-by-Step Video System proven to get rid of lice. She also works with government agencies and schools helping those with the worst head lice cases in America.

Her greatest passion is empowering parents by teaching parents online how to do a professional lice treatment on their child at home. She is the Lice Coach for the My Lice Advice Step-by-Step Video System.

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cetaphil being squirted, presumably for head lice