Removing Chewing Gum

by Amy Gordon
(last updated May 12, 2014)

Chewing gum has an annoying tendency to get hopelessly entangled in the most annoying places. Fortunately, when the gum gets stuck, it can be removed again. It is almost impossible to remove gum when it is warm, so to remove the chewing gum from a rug, carpet, or fabric, you first need to harden it. With rugs and carpets, the easiest way is to use an ice cube. Rub the ice cube on the gum until it gets hard enough so it will not stretch when pulled on. If the piece of fabric where the gum is stuck is small enough (perhaps a shirt or shorts), you can place the item in the freezer until the gum has hardened. If you are using ice to harden gum on a rug or carpet, you may want to place the ice in a plastic bag so that you do not end up soaking the rug or carpet with water.

Once the piece has hardened, you can scrape the chewing gum off with a blunt knife. A regular dinner knife is good for this purpose, or you can use a putty knife from your toolbox. Even when the gum is hard, it will take a decent amount of work to remove the gum from most surfaces. It is possible that you may pull out a few fibers, but if you are careful, the area will remained undamaged.

If the gum is stuck in a person's hair, slightly different techniques need to be used. Instead of using ice to remove the gum from hair, work a little cooking oil or peanut butter into the gum and hair. Once both gum and hair are covered with the oil or peanut butter, pick or comb the gum out. Be careful while doing this on another person, because clearly it can be painful to pull it out. You can also try to take the same approach described earlier: harden the gum with ice and 'crack' it off of the hair. If you do try this method, follow it with an oil treatment.

Author Bio

Amy Gordon

Amy Gordon loves keeping things simple, natural, and safe so she can spend more time having fun. Every day she learns new things about making life at home easier and she loves to share it with you! ...

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