Long hair, don't care... until you're stuck dealing with cleaning long hair out of a shower drain. Long-haired girls have plenty of unique problems, from locks getting stuck in lip gloss on a windy day to strands piling up on the bathroom floor or in hairbrush bristles. But the most heinous problem the long-locked deal with is hair clogging the drain of the shower, causing slowness and a back up. It's ick with a side of ick.
This annoying problem has plagued me for years, since I wash my hair daily, leading to loose hairs on the floor of the tub, which slowly slide towards and eventually down the drain if I don't pay close attention and halt their forward march. These few strands mingle with soap and shampoo residue, creating headaches.
I am here to tell you that, yes, you can clean hair out of the drain easily before having to call a plumber, who'd need to come in to snake it. There are some preventative methods that I also employ. So my aim here is to give you information on how to clean the hair out of the drain and to emphasize the value of staying on top of it.
See that little black splotch near the drain? That's a post-shower knot of hair, mixed with body wash and shaving cream. I know, not exactly the most pleasant sight, but stay with me.
I end up with one of those, usually much smaller, every morning during my shower. If I let a wad go down the drain daily, I'd have a major problem. But I can't snag every strand, so I am forced to monitor the drain. Here are three drain-cleaning methods that I have employed again and again and have always worked well.
1. Use Liquid Plumr... If You Must
When I lived in an apartment, there were times when I couldn't get all the strands due to an immovable drain cover. If I wasn't quick, the hairs were gone in an instant. Over time, it lead to water pooling in the tub or draining slowly, which is gross and not to mention unsanitary. In this case, I would use the hair clog-specific brand of Liquid Plumr.
This method works best before the clog gets too thick and before too much water pools at your feet. When I crash at my parents and use their shower, which also has an immovable drain cover, I tell my dad as soon as the water drains slowly and he quickly administers LP. The next day, the water drains normally.
Make sure you always use all applicable exhaust fans, open the windows, and don't inhale while treating with this product, though, as it is a chemical.
2. Bring Out The Tweezers
In my current crib, I am lucky to have a movable drain cover. However, because of this, I have never had a clog that required a snake or chemicals. I am able to get all up in that piece to check for hairs in the drain weekly and pull them out with a pair of tweezers. It's a unique way to, uh, pluck hair.
Call it preventative maintenance. Yes, it's definitely kind of disgusting — but it's also necessary.
These are the tweezers I use for this type of hair removal only. They are not the same ones I use to pluck errant brow hairs, thank you very much! I store them with other cleaning materials.
3. Use A Watchful Eye
To avoid a clog or having to remove hairs with tweezers, I keep a watchful eye on the hair that I shed during my shower. It's a natural process, so it doesn't concern me. I keep the hair at the opposite end of the tub, so that it doesn't go near the drain. I use my foot to keep it all knotted up and then throw it out or flush it after I towel off.
Some people suggest baking soda and boiling water, but honestly, I have found that weekly checkups, making sure as little hair goes down the drain as possible, and plucking the hairs that did allow me to avoid going the Plumbr or the plumber route too often.
Images: Amy Sciarretto (5); Courtesy Brands; Giphy (1); Bianca Consunji/Bustle