• You're all caught up!

How to Get Iron Buildup Out of Hair

author image Erica Roth
Erica Roth has been a writer since 2007. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and was a college reference librarian for eight years. Roth earned a Bachelor of Arts in French literature from Brandeis University and Master of Library Science from Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science. Her articles appear on various websites.
How to Get Iron Buildup Out of Hair
How to Get Iron Buildup Out of Hair Photo Credit Jessica Isaac/Demand Media

The abundance of iron in the earth's core means that the mineral can sometimes seep into the water in which you bathe and wash your hair. The Illinois Department of Public Health states that very small amounts of iron as low as 0.3 mg per liter of water can cause a discoloration of the water, which can translate to buildup and possibly staining of your hair. Get iron buildup out of your hair by making a few changes to your hair care routine.

Step 1

How to Get Iron Buildup Out of Hair
Photo Credit Jessica Isaac/Demand Media

Squirt a handful of your regular shampoo into your hand or a small cup. Add a teaspoon of baking soda and stir. Adjust the amount of baking soda until the shampoo reaches a paste-like consistency. Work the shampoo into your hair, leave on for a few minutes and rinse.

Baking soda, a natural cleanser most people tend to keep in their homes, removes a variety of chemicals and trace minerals from your hair. Depending on the extent of damage from iron, you may need to shampoo with baking soda for up to three months.

Step 2

How to Get Iron Buildup Out of Hair
Photo Credit Jessica Isaac/Demand Media

Treat your hair with citric acids to get iron and other metals and minerals out of your hair. Lemon juice and tomato juice are both effective treatments for removing green discoloration associated with copper buildup and exposure to chlorine. This method may also work to get the orange-brown rust stains from iron out of your hair.

Fill a spray bottle with either lemon or tomato juice. Spray on your head until your hair is saturated. After about five minutes, rinse your hair and wash with shampoo.

Step 3

How to Get Iron Buildup Out of Hair
Photo Credit Jessica Isaac/Demand Media

Use a commercial clarifying or purifying shampoo periodically to remove buildup from not only iron, copper and other minerals, but from hair products as well. Shampoos of this kind can be especially drying, so intersperse this hair care routine with your normal shampooing and conditioning. Try using the purifying shampoo once weekly to remove iron buildup and staining.

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
THE LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate Nutrition, Workouts & Tips
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
  • Female
  • Male
ft. in.



Demand Media

Our Privacy Policy has been updated. Please take a moment and read it here.