Spray foam insulation is one of the most effective ways to keep your home or commercial building warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It’s also one of the messiest types of insulation out there. While standard fiberglass insulation can be messy as well, it’s nothing compared to spray foam. When you spray this chemical foam directly onto walls, ceilings, or other surfaces, it sticks and expands like crazy. If you’re thinking that sounds like a recipe for disaster, you’re right! Keeping yourself covered with gloves and long sleeves while handling spray foam is practically mandatory. But accidents happen — how do you get spray foam off your hands?
How To Get Spray Foam Off Hands?
Wash Your Hands with Soap and Water
If you manage to get spray foam on your hands right as you start working, the best thing to do is wash your hands right away. This is the best way to remove the stuff before it hardens into a thick, sticky mess. If you wait until the spray foam is almost set on your skin, you’re going to have a much harder time getting it off. If you don’t have soap and water available, you can use alcohol to clean your hands. While alcohol doesn’t have the same cleaning power as soap, it does help break down the adhesives in the spray foam. If you have neither of these things on hand, you can also use vegetable oil or Crisco. Just make sure you work the vegetable oil or Crisco into a lather before washing your hands with soap and water.
Try a Commercial Spray Foam Remover
If you get sprayed with spray foam, you may want to consider keeping a can of commercial spray foam remover around. This stuff works like spray paint remover: it’s mainly composed of solvents that dissolve the adhesives in the spray foam. When you first get sprayed, remove as much excess spray foam as you can with your hands. Then, rub a bit of the spray foam remover into the spray foam that remains on your skin. You may need to re-apply it a few times.
Use dish soap
Dish soap is great for getting rid of the stickiness on your hands after you’ve been sprayed with foam. Just lather your hands up with dish soap and rinse them off. Dish soap will break down the adhesives the spray foam left on your skin, making it easier to remove. When using dish soap to clean your hands, rinse them off as soon as possible. The longer the soap is left on your hands, the harder it is to get rid of.
Use mineral spirits
If there’s no commercial spray foam remover available, mineral spirits can help you get rid of the spray foam on your hands. Mineral spirits are an all-purpose cleaner that can also be used as a paint thinner. When working with mineral spirits, make sure to protect your skin. Mineral spirits are extremely flammable, and they’re also extremely sticky. Wearing rubber gloves is a good idea. Once you’ve got the mineral spirits on your hands, work it into a lather and let it sit for several minutes. When the mineral spirits have broken down the adhesives in the spray foam, they should wipe away easily.
Use vegetable oil or Crisco
As we mentioned above, vegetable oil and Crisco are great for getting rid of the spray foam on your hands. You can use these substances with water, or you can use them on your own. The oil will break down the spray foam, and then you can use water to rinse it away. If you’re using Crisco to clean your hands, make sure you use the regular, non-flavored version. You don’t want to wipe grease on your hands, and you don’t want to taste it in your mouth either.
Dab on the Hand Cream
If you’re in a pinch and need to remove the spray foam from your hands fast, you can use hand cream. Hand creams are made to protect your skin and moisturize it, but they also help break down the adhesives in the spray foam. You can use hand cream to get the spray foam off your hands, but you may want to use a bit more than you would for regular moisturizing. Try dabbing the hand cream on your hands rather than rubbing it in. Wash your hands as soon as you can after using hand cream to remove the spray foam from your hands. The longer the hand cream is left on your skin, the more it will moisturize your hands and the harder it will be to remove later.
Spray a Mist of Spray Deodorant
This last trick is perhaps the most ridiculous, but it’s also incredibly effective. If you’ve managed to get the spray foam on your hands and nowhere else, you can use a can of spray deodorant to get it off. While this may sound like an absolutely ridiculous suggestion, it actually works. Spray deodorant contains alcohol, which is great at breaking down the adhesives in the spray foam. Spray deodorant works best when sprayed onto a rag and used as a wipe. You don’t want to spray it directly on your skin or you could end up with sticky hands or clothes. Just make sure you’re using the alcohol version of spray deodorant and not the deodorizing version, which wouldn’t be nearly as effective!
What You Should Know About Getting Spray Foam Off Your Hands?
Spray foam is made from chemicals that are extremely sticky and difficult to remove from human skin. You definitely don’t want to just leave it on your hands, or the chemical will absorb into your skin and enter your bloodstream.
This can cause some serious health problems, so it’s very important to remove it from any surfaces that it’s adhered to as soon as possible.
The most important thing to keep in mind when trying to remove spray foam from your hands is that it’s important not to rub it.
The best way to get spray foam off your hands is to wash them with warm water. Make sure the water is warm, not hot because hot water can cause the chemicals in the foam to penetrate your skin more deeply.
Scrub your hands with soap, whether liquid or bar, to help break the foam particles loose. You can also use a sponge to clean your skin and remove the foam, as long as you don’t rub the sponge too hard against your skin.
Tips For Getting Spray Foam Off Your Hands
Use soap with warm water: Warm water will help dissolve the chemicals in the foam, whereas hot water will exacerbate the problem. You can use any kind of soap to help break the foam down.
Use a sponge: Sponges can be used to help scrub the foam off of your hands, but make sure not to scrub too hard or you’ll just make the foam stick to your hands even more.
Use a wet/dry vacuum: You can use a vacuum to remove the foam from your skin, but make sure you’re using a wet/dry vacuum so you can control the level of suction.
Avoid rubbing your hands: It’s very important not to rub your hands while the foam is still stuck to them. Rubbing it will just make the foam stick to your hands even more.
Spray foam insulation is an incredibly effective way to seal and insulate your home or commercial building. But it’s also one of the messiest types of insulation out there. If you’re not careful, spray foam can get on your hands and get stuck to your skin, which can cause some serious health problems if left untreated. Luckily, the best way to get spray foam off your hands is to wash them with warm water and make sure you’re not rubbing your hands while they’re covered in foam.