PDA

View Full Version : Yes, Hair can go mouldy



Skee
August 31st, 2010, 05:00 AM
Hello,
I just joined to add to a thread that I can't find now. It was titled "Hah" or something like that. It came up on a Google search but appears to be closed. I have very thick and just past shoulder length hair - considered "long" but don't really know what that this forum would consider it long. Two nights ago I went into a friend's hot tub. It smelled mouldy but she assured me it was the cover. We had more than a few drinks so my judgment was not what it should be. I woke up the next morning stinking of mould. Washed my hair and put it in a pony tail and headed off to work. We're going through a heat wave with super high humidity. I work outdoors so was sweaty in no time. When I got home and took out my pony tail, my hair was REALLY stinky again. I washed it with my husbands volumizing shampoo - no conditioner as I wanted it to dry out as much as possible to kill the mold. It smelled a bit better so I used the hair dryer. This morning, my dry hair STILL smells of mold. I'm going to try vinegar and water later today - the hair is pretty dry thanks to the "harsh"(?) shampoo.
I haven't talked to my friend yet so I don't know if she has the same problem but her hair is at least 5 inches shorter than mine.

I also will add that I rarely dry my hair and have often run off with it tied back and wet. Sometimes when I take out the pony tail in the evening (or even the next morning) my hair will still be damp but I've never had a problem with mould before.
So I'm posting a warning to you all, don't let any water that smells mouldy near your hair - no matter how many Margarita's you've had!
If the vinegar doesn't work I'll ask the pharmacist for help. If that doesn't work looks like I'll have little use for hair ties for a long while. :-/

CrisDee
August 31st, 2010, 05:06 AM
I've had my hair go moldy when put up wet on humid summer days, even without help from a moldy hot tub :)

The vinegar rinse should do the trick. You may want to break down and blow it dry for a few days as well - keeping things dry is the most important thing you can do to prevent mold.

By the way, welcome to LHC :flower:

slz
August 31st, 2010, 05:11 AM
If I remember the thread you're talking about, it was said that there can be mold on the surface of hair strands, but hair itself won't go moldy and be damaged from it.

cindy58
August 31st, 2010, 05:30 AM
Icky hot tubs are a no-no for the body as well as the hair.

Maybe you could try laying back in your bath tub and letting your hair spread all around and soak a bit in clean water. Then stand up and wash it clean in a shower. Hopefully that would get rid of anything that's lingering.

Skee
August 31st, 2010, 05:33 AM
Thanks Crisdee and slz!
Sorry slz, I was probably so bent about getting rid of mould I wasn't reading thread too thoroughly. Crisdee, that makes me feel better. I can't wait to get rid of this stink! I have a pretty strong stomach in regards to icky but I got a little queasy last night when I took my hair out of the pony tail. Felt like yelling "shut up" to my husband so he'd quit talking so I could get into the shower. He's such a nice man, I'm glad I held my tongue.
Well off to work now (thankfully, I work with horses so no one will be offended by my hair stink - hope I don't make the hayloft go moldy!)
Hating Spores,
-Skee

Flossy
August 31st, 2010, 05:58 AM
I know that oil of cloves kills mould spores. I don't know how it would go on hair. The ratio is a quarter teaspoon to a litre of water, you could maybe rinse with that and make sure everything is dead.

Eugh, sounds like a very unpleasant situation!

lost_hope
August 31st, 2010, 06:00 AM
Welcome to LHC :D
That's interessting, I've never had anything like that happen to my hair and due to being a rower it's been dunked in horrible water many times :( Thanks for the informtion, sorry i can't help

Igor
August 31st, 2010, 07:50 AM
Your hair didnít go mouldy, it absorbed mouldy water. There is a big difference

Arianwen
August 31st, 2010, 08:00 AM
You shouldn't go in non-maintained hot tubs, I think there's a risk of Legionnaire's *sp* disease?

Skee
August 31st, 2010, 08:54 AM
Well whether or not it "went" mouldy or absorbed it, my hair plain and simple stinks :( and is obviously harbouring mould spores. :(:(
This specific species of mould obviously is finding appropriate conditions to continue growing in my hair. Since it survives fine in or near the the 94 degree temps (temp of the tub) and whatever chemicals my friend puts in the tub, it seems to be a hardy type.
Perhaps due to the high humidity exasperated by wet conditions (sweating) of my scalp due to the physical nature of the work I do it is getting enough moisture to survive. When I washed yesterday morning it it smelled better but after a days' work it was worse than before the shampoo:mad:. After another wash and then thorough blow dry, it still stank.
So for what ever reason, mould has taken up residence in my hair and seems to be surviving just fine. I'm off to mix up a bunch of vinegar and water and see if that will help. Wish me luck
(and believe me I'll not be getting in any pool/tub whatever for a long time - if ever!
-Creature o' Black Lagoon

Calaelen
August 31st, 2010, 09:12 AM
Hi. I just wanted to pop in to say don't go for the vinegar, it may mask the smell, but wont get rid of any live mold that is there. Go for baking soda. I got a news letter recently that said to use baking soda as it will kill it. I'd make a scrub and wash with that, then rinse very well and finish with a vinegar rinse, then some conditioner to combat any dryness.

spidermom
August 31st, 2010, 09:13 AM
They make medicated shampoos to treat fungus of the scalp; I wonder if you need one of those.

bumblebums
August 31st, 2010, 09:25 AM
Molds are pretty amazing. There are molds that grow on acids (though obviously I don't know what kind of molds your tub has).

Vinegar won't hurt your hair, but it might also not help with the molds much. It is not as effective as other methods of fighting molds. I would try tea tree oil. And yes, dry your hair thoroughly.

kittensoupnrice
August 31st, 2010, 09:38 AM
Wow.

If I were in your shoes, I'd probably try dunking my head in a large bucket of hot water dosed with tea tree oil.

Swish and swish! I'd probably repeat it once or twice until my hair only smelled of tea tree oil instead of mold.

I like using tea tree oil as a safe antifungual.

Alvrodul
August 31st, 2010, 10:40 AM
Ewwww! I hope you get that nasty mold out of your hair!

ravenreed
August 31st, 2010, 10:42 AM
When ever someone leaves clothes in the washer and they get that musty smell, I rewash with a strong dose of vinegar and it takes care of the problem. I would use vinegar full strength on my hair until the smell is gone. I would also blow dry my hair, not letting it stay damp for any length of time.

estherbeth
August 31st, 2010, 12:08 PM
Vinegar does indeed kill live mold. When a houseplant gets mold around on the to of its soil, you spray a white vinegar and water mixture on it. I've had to do that quite a few times as plants got acclimated to my house, and it does kill the mold.

If just a rinse isn't doing the trick, perhaps try leaving the vinegar in for a few minutes before rinsing it out?

Danaus plexippu
August 31st, 2010, 12:22 PM
I would vote for tea tree oil if the vinegar doesn't work. Good Luck!

Pierre
August 31st, 2010, 01:35 PM
I know that oil of cloves kills mould spores. I don't know how it would go on hair. The ratio is a quarter teaspoon to a litre of water, you could maybe rinse with that and make sure everything is dead.
Cloves smell pretty in hair! Especially when the hair gets wet. I mix 2 parts henna (which is also antifungal), 1 part cloves (powder, not oil), 1 part amla, and some water and soak my hair in that overnight. If you don't want the color, just mix cloves and water.

Anje
August 31st, 2010, 01:41 PM
Ewww.

Thankfully, stinky hair seems to be the worst thing that you've suffered. There are all sorts of infections you can pick up from nasty hot tubs, including hot tub folliculitis. Not to mention, who knows what you might end up inhaling which might grow in your nice, moist, warm lungs!

little_cherry
August 31st, 2010, 01:56 PM
Apple cider vinegar will kill mold. I use it to clean mold from the ceiling in the bathroom.

Using a baking soda scrub is very damaging to hair since it is so abrasive, even after a vinegar rinse. I used to do this before LHC and my cuticles were always raised. It is best ti dissolve 1 tsp of BS to 2 cups of water and do a rinse, but this is on a rare occasion.

In2wishin
August 31st, 2010, 02:19 PM
You could always bleach or peroxide your hair.
(just kidding)

Here is something I found on eHow:

You can remove mold or mildew from hair by using a clarifying shampoo. Select a sulfate-rich clarifying shampoo. Detergents like ammonium and sodium lauryl sulfate will help strip and rid the hair of product buildup. Rinse hair thoroughly under warm water to prepare your hair for shampooing, then follow the shampoo with a moisturizing deep conditioner treatment. Rinse the hair and allow it to dry completely before styling.

Alternatively, mold has also been found to respond to essential oil spray treatments. These treatments are safe for the hair. Tea tree oil, a relatively expensive and pungent essential oil; and grapefruit seed oil, an odorless, more economical oil are popular mold-fighting oils. The How to Kill Mold website recommends diluting 2 tbsp. of tea tree oil or 20 drops of grapefruit oil in 2 cups of water and then spraying the solution on your mold problem. The water dilution should help to control the strong odor of the tea tree oil, and very little is required of each mixture to take care of most mold problems.

Vinegar is another popular remedy for mold removal and can safely be used on the hair when diluted. The odor from vinegar can also be quite offensive, so follow any vinegar spraying with clarifying shampoo for best results

Skee
August 31st, 2010, 02:26 PM
What a huge amount of replies! Thank you everyone for offering your suggestions/wisdom. Sorry I haven't got back sooner but work interferes so much with computer time! ;-)
This morning around 10 am I re-washed my hair and did a 50/50 vinegar/water soak for about 3 minutes in a bowl. It seems to have helped a lot. I'm doing my best to keep it dry but in this heat...
I called my friend to ask how her hair is. She said it was fine and that her tub is professionally checked every 2 weeks. She really doesn't think it was her tub. and suggested that perhaps I brought a mould in from the barn. While barns is not exactly the least mouldiest place in the world, I have my doubts about that but would not totally rule it out. There is a lot of mould around this year - the leaves on the lilac leaves in the front yard are covered. However, the hay I've handled this year so far has been pretty mould free - have seen it much worse in prior years.
Thanks again for all your suggestions - I'll keep you posted. I think if another round of vinegar doesn't work I'll try the tea tree oil. Is there any special kind and where would one buy it? (I live in Toronto, Ontario)
-Skee who stinks considerably less now :-)

Shany
August 31st, 2010, 03:00 PM
Mold spores love heat, humidity, nutrients and acidity... So you won't get rid of them by using vinegar. They are very resistants. I would worry about the inhalation of spores, it can cause an infection of the alveoli (in your lungs) and worse if your immune system is not in a good condition.

Like Calaelen said, go for baking soda, it's an alkali.

bumblebums
August 31st, 2010, 03:53 PM
Mold spores love heat, humidity, nutrients and acidity... So you won't get rid of them by using vinegar. They are very resistants. I would worry about the inhalation of spores, it can cause an infection of the alveoli (in your lungs) and worse if your immune system is not in a good condition.

Like Calaelen said, go for baking soda, it's an alkali.

Thank you, Shany!

Just in case there are still skeptics out there:

http://books.google.com/books?id=XLRwL4ud95AC&pg=PT71&lpg=PT71&dq=acidophilic+molds&source=bl&ots=j0TaVy6ZlP&sig=_Gtc7g3RphW-SBOv7UHhEYBPpuU&hl=en&ei=RHl9TMzyB4P98AabtJXLBg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CCcQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=acidophilic%20molds&f=false

JCFantasy23
September 1st, 2010, 02:30 AM
What a huge amount of replies! Thank you everyone for offering your suggestions/wisdom. Sorry I haven't got back sooner but work interferes so much with computer time! ;-)
This morning around 10 am I re-washed my hair and did a 50/50 vinegar/water soak for about 3 minutes in a bowl. It seems to have helped a lot. I'm doing my best to keep it dry but in this heat...
I called my friend to ask how her hair is. She said it was fine and that her tub is professionally checked every 2 weeks. She really doesn't think it was her tub. and suggested that perhaps I brought a mould in from the barn. While barns is not exactly the least mouldiest place in the world, I have my doubts about that but would not totally rule it out. There is a lot of mould around this year - the leaves on the lilac leaves in the front yard are covered. However, the hay I've handled this year so far has been pretty mould free - have seen it much worse in prior years.
Thanks again for all your suggestions - I'll keep you posted. I think if another round of vinegar doesn't work I'll try the tea tree oil. Is there any special kind and where would one buy it? (I live in Toronto, Ontario)
-Skee who stinks considerably less now :-)

Not meaning to call your friend dishonest, but I've never heard of someone in a home paying someone to professionally check out their hot tub every two weeks. Perhaps for the very wealthy? I worked for a pool company and even with swimming pools and residences the homeowners usually just bought their own kits. Maybe this is what she meant and was just exaggerating. It's easy to read those kits incorrectly and a lot of people don't follow directions with them and the chemical testing.

I don't think a person can carry a mould with them from a barn into a hot tub? The whole thing just sounds so strange. I am sorry for your hair though, I am sure you will conquer this mold. Has the vinegar worked? At least it will have the good benefit of softening your hair and maybe giving it some more shine too.

kittensoupnrice
September 1st, 2010, 09:42 PM
Thanks again for all your suggestions - I'll keep you posted. I think if another round of vinegar doesn't work I'll try the tea tree oil. Is there any special kind and where would one buy it? (I live in Toronto, Ontario)
-Skee who stinks considerably less now :-)

You should be able to find it at your local pharmacy or health food store. I've heard that Wal-Mart typically carries it, too. If you can't find it on the shelves, the pharmacist should be able to help you.

Skee
September 2nd, 2010, 06:06 AM
Hello all you hair gurus!
Thanks soooo much for all your advice. Yesterday I did a 2nd soak/rinse with vinegar. I left a fair amount of it in and though I smelled like a condiment, the mould seems to have stopped. It is hard for me to tell now as it isn't so bad that I notice it. I'm sure the spores are in there still just waiting for the correct conditions but with more judicious hair drying, doing barn work in the mornings will prevent it's return at least until the humidity breaks.

Yesterday's temp of 32C (89F) and humidity of "only" 41% it felt like 38C - 100F!). Stupid weather! Does it not realize it isn't helping my dratted hair? ;) Oh well it will end soon and I'll be able to run off with my hair wet again. LOL you should see the size of my hair after blow drying. The 80s rocker's hair may look (and smell?) healthier but I'd probably win the Biggest Hair Without Product category.
Anyway, I'll let you all know how it goes
-Skee

julliams
September 2nd, 2010, 06:42 AM
I have a book on eliminating mould from homes and it says that the only surefire way to kill mould is vinegar. It works better than bleach (thank goodness). So I would go with a vinegar rinse until the smell disappears and then follow with an SMT to give your hair it's suppleness back. I literally got rid of a mouldy ceiling issue by using straight white vinegar on it. It hasn't come back in over a year.

Skee
September 7th, 2010, 10:04 AM
Hello everyone,
Just wanted to let you know that the vinegar seems to have worked. I'm still blow drying and hoping it will be okay soon to go back to wash and wear. Not totally sure all the smell is gone but at least it has been reduced to only a possibility (Ya mebbe I'm paranoid now!)
So NO more hot tubs of any sort for me. Thanks so much everyone for helping me get through this without losing my hair!