Spray foam sealant, also known as expanding foam, is often used to insulate buildings and seal cavities that’d otherwise allow cold air from outside to enter. Spray foam is highly effective in preventing heat transfer, but when it gets onto your hands, removing it will take time and effort because it sticks to the skin.
Here are the steps to follow to get spray foam off your hands:
- Quickly wipe off the excess foam while still wet
- Use baby powder
- Apply acetone on the affected areas
- Wash your hands with warm soapy water
- Moisturize your hands
- Use a pumice stone to scrub off cured spray foam
- Wash your hands with exfoliating soap or scrub
- Rub vegetable oil and baking soda on your hands
- Soak hands in gloves filled with warm soapy water
Some of these methods work when the spray foam is still wet, while others are more effective on dried foam. Unfortunately, spray foam is stubborn, especially when cured, so you must resort to multiple methods to remove it from your hands completely. This article will explain the steps mentioned above in more detail and how to remove spray foam from your hair and clothes.
1. Quickly Wipe Off Excess Foam While Still Wet
Wet spray foam is easier to remove than dry foam. Use a disposable cloth or a paper towel to wipe off the spray foam from your hands. Ensure you discard the cloth or paper towel when done. Otherwise, the foam will stick to another surface.
Uncured spray foam is significantly easier to remove using a dry cloth or paper towel. Avoid wetting your hands because water speeds up the curing process.
2. Use Baby Powder
After wiping your hands, apply plenty of baby powder and gently rub it all over your hands for a few minutes. The quantity of powder you use will depend on how much spray foam you need to get off. So, you should apply it liberally.
The spray foam will stick to the baby powder, and as you rub your hands, some of it will come off. Wash your hands to remove the baby powder and the spray foam. Repeat this step a couple of times to get all of the spray foam off your hands.
3. Apply Acetone on the Affected Areas
When acetone comes into contact with spray foam, it turns the spray foam into liquid. Even after wiping off the excess foam from your hands, you most likely have some left on your skin. Apply acetone on your skin to loosen the foam and separate it from the skin.
Wipe it off with paper towels or a piece of disposable cloth. If you’re at home and wondering where to get acetone, check if you have nail polish remover with acetone as the primary ingredient.
This Eternal 100% Pure Acetone is residue-free and easy to use. The formula works quickly and is highly effective.
4. Wash Your Hands With Warm Soapy Water
Acetone can be irritating to the skin. It absorbs moisture and oils, causing the skin to dry and even crack. But don’t worry if the acetone was in contact with your skin for a couple of minutes — after all, it’s used to remove nail polish!
You should wash your hands thoroughly to get rid of the acetone. Use gentle hand soap and warm water to remove the acetone.
5. Moisturize Your Hands
Dry your hands and moisturize them. The lotion will replace the oils lost when you rubbed acetone on your hands. Don’t skip this step, especially if you suffer from contact dermatitis.
Ensure you check your hands for signs of dried spray foam. If you fail to get it all out, you can remove the foam with the following steps.
6. Use a Pumice Stone to Scrub Off Cured Spray Foam
Cured spray foam is usually hardened, so you’ll need to try other methods to get it off your hands. In this state, spray polyurethane foam is highly adhesive, so you need to employ extra effort to get it off.
Lightly rub the pumice stone on your hands. The friction will help remove the dried spray foam. The process is not any different from removing heel calluses. However, since your hands are more sensitive, you should be more careful when rubbing your hands with a pumice stone.
Wash your hands, and then check if the pumice stone worked. If it did, but you still have some spray foam on your hands, generously apply petroleum jelly on your hands. Cover your hands with plastic cling film for an hour.
Afterward, wash your hands with warm water and apply hand cream to moisturize your skin.
This Maryton Pumice Stone is excellent for removing spray foam from your hands. It’s soft yet effective at removing calluses and, in this case, cured spray foam.
7. Wash Your Hands With Exfoliating Soap or Scrub
If you still have some spray foam on your hands, you should try using exfoliating soap. Choose a scrub with large granules for greater friction when you rub your hands. Hopefully, dry spray foam will come off together with dead skin cells as you exfoliate.
Alternatively, you can make homemade exfoliating scrubs using sugar, coffee granules, and oil. The oil will help loosen dry spray foam, while the coffee and sugar granules will get the cured foam off your hands. Wash your hands and then moisturize them.
8. Rub Vegetable Oil and Baking Soda on Your Hands
Rub vegetable or canola oil on your hands. Generously sprinkle baking soda on your hands and rub your hands for a few minutes.
If you don’t have baking soda at home, you can use sugar or sea salt instead.
You can then wash your hands with warm water and soap. Apply lotion to keep your hands from drying out.
9. Soak Your Hands in Gloves Filled With Warm Soapy Water
This method of removing spray foam requires a lot of patience and time, especially if you have other duties which require you to use your hands. However, spray foam can be quite stubborn, and if you want to get rid of it, you’ll need to be patient.
The water and soap will loosen the spray foam and cause it to separate from your skin. If the gloves are too loose, have someone tighten them with tape to ensure the water doesn’t pour out.
Leave the gloves on for an hour or longer. When you are ready to remove the gloves, your hands will look like prunes, but at least you’ll no longer have to deal with the unsightly spray foam on your hands.
If some remnants of cured spray foam remain on your hands, don’t worry. It’ll eventually come off as you keep washing your hands. It may take a few days for the spray foam to come off completely.
The LANON 3 Pair Nitrile Gloves are chemical-resistant and ideal when working with spray foam. You can also use it to remove cured spray foam off your hands. They’re reusable, durable, multipurpose, and provide a great grip. They also have a cotton liner, making them more comfortable.
Is Spray Foam Toxic to Skin?
When using spray foam, it’s best to wear protective clothing, including gloves, masks, and goggles. Spray foam has several chemicals which can be harmful to your health. However, the most immediate impact you’ll notice will be how quickly spray foam sticks to the skin and how difficult it is to remove it.
Spray foam is not toxic to your skin. However, it can sometimes cause skin irritations and allergic reactions, such as itching, swelling, reddening, and rash. Unfortunately, spray foam on the skin can also trigger respiratory sensitization, such as shortness of breath.
Avoid touching your eyes with hands exposed to spray foam because they can cause stinging, tearing, reddening, and swelling of the eyes.
Considering how difficult it is to remove spray foam off hands, it’s best to wear gloves to avoid these reactions, especially if you have sensitive skin.
Does WD-40 Remove Expanded Spray Foam From Hands?
When expanded spray foam comes into contact with your hands, removing it can be an uphill task. Cured spray foam is even harder to remove, so once you notice any spray foam on your hands, immediately wipe it off with a dry cloth. One of the remedies given for removing expanded spray foam is using WD-40.
WD-40 removes expanded spray foam but is not ideal for use on hands. The skin can easily absorb WD-40, causing skin irritation and drying. When it comes into contact with the eyes, WD-40 can cause irritation, tearing, and redness. If inhaled, it can cause nausea and cause respiratory disorders.
WD-40 should only be used on surfaces where excess spray foam was used, not your hands. However, you should take measures to ensure it does not come into contact with your skin.
How to Get Spray Foam From Your Hair
If spray foam can get onto your hands, it can easily get onto your hair, too, especially when spraying an area above your head. Removing spray foam from hair is just as difficult as getting it off your hands.
You can do the following to get spray foam from your hair:
- Wipe off the spray foam from your hair while it’s still wet.
- Immediately rub acetone on the affected spot to remove the insulating foam sealant before it cures and hardens. Acetone will deprive your hair of oils, resulting in dry hair and scalp.
- Wash your hair after using acetone and oil your hair to restore the lost oils. Fortunately, acetone doesn’t break down proteins, so it cannot cause further damage to your hair.
- If some spray foam is still left on your hair, keep washing it until it comes off. It may take days for the sealant to come off completely. Sometimes, it may take longer, so you shouldn’t worry if the spray foam takes longer to come off.
- Alternatively, you can cut off the affected to quickly remove the cured spray foam.
Like spray foam on hands, you’ll need to act quickly when it gets to your hair. The moisture in the air will speed up the curing process. The same happens when spray foam falls onto your hair.
It’ll be even worse if your hair is wet, so it’s best to avoid working with wet hair. However, wearing a protective covering over your head will help avoid accidents, and it’ll save you from the possibility of having to shave your head.
How to Remove Spray Foam From Clothes
If you get some spray foam on your hands, there is a chance that your clothes will get stained. Getting spray foam from clothes may be tricky, especially if the fabric is delicate.
Ensure you wipe off the spray foam from your clothes as soon as they get stained. This way, you can get it off while it’s still wet.
Unfortunately, acetone may ruin your clothes, so you need to be careful where you choose to try removing the spray foam. Use a dry cloth to avoid speeding up the curing process. Identify a hidden spot where you can attempt to remove the spray foam using acetone.
If the acetone leaves a stain or discolors your clothes, you should avoid using it.
Follow the regular cleaning instructions for the fabric. However, if the stain proves stubborn, you may be forced to remove the stain mechanically because other chemicals are likely to damage the fabric.
Wear a mask and scrape off the hardened spray foam. Use a scouring pad, blunt knife, or even a pumice stone to remove the cured spray foam from the clothes. Alternatively, you can pour mineral spirits or use a polyurethane stripper at the back of the fabric.
The solutions may loosen the spray foam, making it easier for you to scrape it off. However, you should test on a hidden area first to confirm the solvent won’t ruin the fabric.
Spray foam is handy for insulating and sealing gaps. However, getting it off your hands, hair, and clothes can be challenging. You may need to try multiple methods to get rid of cured spray foam from your hands, and sometimes, you need to be patient until the spray foam comes off.
Acetone is the primary solvent you can use for all spray foam stains. However, if it doesn’t work, you need to find a different solution.