Olive Oil For Lice Treatment Tutorial: Does Olive Oil Kill Lice?

Is olive oil a good lice treatment? Does it kill lice?


I've tried all of the over-the-counter products and the lice keeps coming back! I've heard that olive oil kills lice, is it true? How do you use olive oil as a lice treatment? 

woman pouting olive oil on her head and into her hair, presumably for head lice

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! And that's because of the new strain of lice, called super lice.


After no success with lice kits a lot of people turn to home remedies. Olive oil is one that I see a lot of people turn to in desperation, but before going down the olive oil route there are a few things you should know.  So, let's talk about exactly what olive 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 a lice expert, lice coach, Registered Nurse, and the creator of My Lice Advice. I help people with lice every day in my lice treatment center, in school districts, and in government work. But the thing I love the most is empowering parents to get rid of head lice in ONE DAY at home! 

You can eliminate lice in one day using the same proven professional technique I use in my lice center on your child. Follow along with the Step-by-Step Video System, and when you're done with the videos you're done with lice. PERMANENTLY!

Olive Oil for Head Lice

lice surrounded by a bottle of olive oil and a cup of olive oil, presumably to be used for am olive oil lice treatment

Olive Oil For Lice Video Tutorial

olive oil for lice youtube thumbnail
It's explained best in video!
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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

Is Olive Oil 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 olive oil and head lice.

Is Olive Oil A Good Lice Treatment?

the words yes or no


The purpose of My Lice Advice is to give you the undiluted facts, so that you can make good decisions and get rid of lice as fast as possible. Below you will find the stats on how effective olive oil is on both lice bugs and lice eggs. The studies speak for themselves.

Does Olive Oil Kill Lice?

bottle of olive oil and a poured cup of olive oil, presumably to be used for olive oil head lice treatment


98% of head lice SURVIVE an olive oil treatment.

The myth is that olive oil can “smother” and suffocate head lice if left on the head for 8 hours. Studies testing the effectiveness of olive oil on head lice have proved this is COMPLETELY FALSE. It is a myth that olive oil kills lice.

One study compared the effectiveness of six different home remedies on head lice. Hair was completely saturated in olive oil and left to sit for a full 8 hours. After 8 hours, researchers examined the hair for live vs. dead head lice.

How did olive oil do?

Olive oil killed only 2% of head lice. That's less than tap water!

Yes, you read that correctly. 

Olive oil killed 2% of head lice, and 98% of head lice were still alive after being completely covered in olive oil for 8 hours.

So, does olive oil kill lice? NO!


Olive oil makes lice stop moving temporarily, this "fools" most people.

When you submerge lice in any liquid they stop moving.

This tricks most people into thinking that lice are dead, but they are not.

This is a coping mechanism that lice have that is termed "playing dead."

Studies show that submerging lice in oil or water causes them to go into survival mode. They can actually live in this survival mode for a very long time, you can think of it as "hibernation" for lice. One of their greatest survival skills is that they hold still and stop breathing (playing dead). 

Historically, people believed that lice could only hold their breath for 6 hours, but multiple studies have debunked that theory. All studies show lice can hold their breath for a VERY LONG TIME. One recent study showed lice living longer than 24 hours submerged in liquid. (study, study)

When you submerge lice in oil, they usually go into a hibernation state to conserve energy. One study termed this as “playing dead.” When people use olive oil for head lice, this “playing dead” is what they see, and they assume that lice are, in fact, dead. They're not.

Lice usually remain in this hibernation state for a little while after being removed from oils but “resurrect” back to life and are soon at full strength and capable of breeding just as before.

Home remedies like olive oil DO NOT kill lice, they only slow them down temporarily. This tricks people into thinking that lice are dead, but lice just come right back to life and keep infesting your child.

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

Which kills lice bugs?

Olive Oil = No!

Step-by-Step Video System = Yes!

Olive oil 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 Olive Oil 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.


Olive oil does not kill or prevent lice eggs (nits) from hatching. Lice eggs that hatch re-infest your child with lice again.

In one study, lice eggs (nits) were covered in olive oil for 10 days straight and compared to lice eggs not covered in oil. The majority of eggs smothered in olive oil hatched!

All it takes for lice to re-infest your head is 2 lice eggs hatching (one male, one female). So leave just 2 lice eggs behind and you will find yourself right back in this situation with lice again...and again...and again.

Olive Oil Lice Treatment: Know the Facts

ambulance with sirens responding to an emergency

Be Aware of the Dangers

Olive oil lice treatments require you to saturate the hair in olive oil, place a plastic cap on it and then have your child sleep in it. Leaving plastic on your child while she sleeps can lead to suffocation as it did in this news story:

“Massachusetts police are investigating the death of an 18-month old child who suffocated, apparently because of a home remedy for head lice...

...a plastic shopping bag was placed over her head, a common home remedy for head lice. The girl was left unattended and apparently fell asleep, allowing the bag to slip down over her face, suffocating her.”

Olive Oil = Retreat, Retreat, Retreat!

frustrated woman, presumably frustrated because home remedies for lice are not working.

The top 3 reasons doing any treatment requiring multiple re-treatments is a bad idea.

Reason #1- You’ll have lice for weeks or months. I’m not a fan of any idea of living with lice for weeks on end, and that’s what you’ll be doing. Lice eggs will be hatching on your child’s head every day, which means she will have head lice crawling on her head until you do another treatment.

Reason #2- Lice eggs hatch at variable times. Eggs do not hatch all at once. Some lice eggs hatch within a few days. But, some lice eggs take longer to hatch. Some studies show lice eggs hatching 15 days later or 21 days later. So, you’ll need to do these treatments over and over and over again for how long?

Reason #3- Having lice for weeks or months will spread it. The longer your child has lice, the more likely she is to spread it to others in the home. Let’s say a few lice hatch the day after the treatment. What’s to keep lice from spreading to her siblings and friends?

If you choose the “repeat treatments” method, your child will have lice for several weeks because every day new lice will hatch from the eggs left in the hair.

If you want to get rid of lice fast and break free of re-treatments. Then learn how to do the professional technique by following along in the Step-by-Step Video System.

Olive Oil= Taking A BIG chance

woman with her fingers crossed, presumably hoping that a lice treatment will work

The ONLY benefit of olive oil is that saturating the hair with oil for hours often puts lice into a “play dead” mode, so they are immobile. This makes it easier to remove since they won’t be running away (or at least they'll be a little slower).

So, if you plan to manually remove all of the lice bugs while they are in this "playing dead" mode, then I guess olive oil can be helpful.

But, make sure you get out every last one because if you miss even one tiny bug, it will come back to life at full strength after you rinse the olive oil out.

Olive Oil and The Never-Ending Cycle

Most people that use lice kits and home remedies 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. But...

arrows pointing to lice eggs left in hair

After using an over-the-counter treatment or a home remedy, people think they've taken care of the problem because they aren't finding lice bugs for a while.

But the bigger problem is the lice eggs that are left in the hair. 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 with arrows labeling them

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 by the time you notice your head is infested all over again!

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.

How to be lice-free by the end of the day...



Get rid of lice the same way the experts do. Your personal lice coach walks you through each step of doing a professional lice treatment at home in a series of videos.



Follow along with the videos on your child in your home. No lice kits or toxic chemicals involved!



When you're done with the videos, you're done with lice. And it's gone permanently!

If you choose to go the olive oil route...

discouraged mother dealing with head lice

Lice is horrible, and no one should have to endure it for months on end. And I hope you don't.

Many 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.

I created the My Lice Advice Video System so you can avoid struggling with lice for months, instead, just follow along with the videos and be done with lice by the end of the day!

Summing it up...

Most parents struggle with lice because they don't realize that lice have become immune to treatments that worked in the past.

Olive oil is among the worst lice treatments out there, as it does not kill head lice even after being left on the head for 8 hours. People are often fooled when they use olive oil because lice usually “play dead” when covered in liquid. But lice quickly come back to life stronger than ever.

The very best, most effective way to get rid of lice is by doing the same system I have done in my lice center for years. I teach parents how to do this system in step-by-step videos. If you want to get rid of lice for good, follow along with the videos and get rid of lice by the end of the day!

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.

olive oil being poured on head and into hair, presumably as a lice treatment
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