Niamh O’Connell of themamashipblog

I was an au pair in France for a summer at the age of 18. One day I came into the living-room to see the mother sitting on the sofa, the cat on her lap, tweezers in hand, and a jam-jar of hot soapy water on the coffee table in front of her. She was picking out the fleas from the cat’s fur, and sending them to their death via the hot soapy water. This grossed me out. I felt a little sorry for the fleas (extreme animal rights reaction, I am well aware) and kept my distance from the moggy for the rest of my stay. A few years later in a hostel in southern Spain a flea jumped across my pillow, and my freak-out reaction got laughs from the more seasoned travellers in the dorm. Let’s just say I’m not relaxed around parasites of any description.
Headlice really freak me out. The thought of them on my head, or my children’s heads actually makes my skin crawl. When Charlie starts school they will be an issue though. It’s rare the family that gets through the school years without an infestation of sorts. I am sure I will deal with them if I have to, but I would certainly rather not, the thought of it really turns my stomach. I would much rather a fairy-godmother wave her magic wand and have them disappear.

Firstly, the harsh chemicals in the lice-treatment shampoos on the market would scare me off. I remember as a child being doused in the most foul-smelling concoction, my eyes watering, my nose burning and sitting there for what seemed like hours, dire warnings not to scratch my head. The problem is that the lice shampoos on the market don’t work, see any parenting forum online, they are full of frustrated (usually) mothers who don’t know where to turn. They’ve been promised results from the pharmaceutical industry, and there doesn’t seem to be any back-up plan when these do not deliver. I think the success rate of over-the-counter lice shampoos lies at less than 20%. What other industry would accept such a low success rate? Yet the products are still on the market, still making money for the huge multi-national companies.

With all the warnings that come with hair dyes, the scalp is capable of absorbing many chemicals, and I would be very wary of putting any chemical treatment on my own children’s heads. Even now at the age of 3 Charlie might get only a teaspoon of bubblebath, and I still don’t use shampoo on his head, only conditioner, as I am so careful to keep his body away from chemicals. He has never had any skin complaints, and I am sure this is partly to thank, as the sodium laureth sulfate in every shampoo/bath bubbles has a really drying effect on the skin.
I have heard of natural treatments for head lice, using nit-combing and essential oils to scrape out the animals as soon as they hatch, though you are left with the live eggs in between, combing out the lice every few weeks as they mature and hatch out of the eggs. That doesn’t appeal to me either. What if they start hatching one night, and have visited us all by morning?

A fairy godmother has arrived on the scene though, looking after the lice problem for you, it’s called The Hairforce– Lice Assassins, a nit and head lice clearing service. Their revolutionary technology – the LouseBuster™ machine – uses just controlled heated air to simply dehydrate over 95% of both the nits and head lice in one 30 minute session. The dead nits and lice are then simply combed out. They want to bring their genius business opportunity to Ireland so women over here can get their hands on the LouseBuster™ machine. Their Rapid Response Unit is a package that enables you to run your own part-time, flexible business, and earn a good income whilst bringing much needed help to families in the community. The story is a powerful one – expensive lice products deliver over 80% failure for the consumer; the LouseBuster™ delivers over 95% success.

The Lousebuster machine, operated by a trained professional essentially extracts the water out of both the head lice and their eggs, so they are dehydrated and therefore dead. This is a 30 minute process, easily executed and highly effective, killing over 95% of the infestation in this one go. You then simply comb out the dehydrated head lice and nits, and The Hairforce have a Clearing System they can furnish you with so you can comb them out like you’ve never done before. The treatment is available in the UK at present, but are looking to expand into Ireland.

The company was set up by Dee Wright, a UK-based mother who was looking for a business opportunity, and has created a great brand, with a cool image, and none of the embarrassment or “hiding in the closet” that having headlice usually entails. Much like a hair appointment, you would arrange your Lousebusting appointment, sit back, and let them take care of your problem.
Their website is thankfully free of gratuitous photos of “the enemy” (i.e. the lice) and is easy to navigate. Their imagery is slick and cool, creating a superhero / Charlie’s Angels image for their Lice Assassins. I can imagine having a child who’s freaking out at the thought of their headlice feeling very empowered about the treatment “Let’s call in the Hairforce!” and confident in the thought that these Lousebusters will solve the problem professionally and quickly.

The Hairforce have been enjoying a great media profile of late, featuring on the series “Embarrassing Bodies” and many newspaper and radio slots, as their website attests. Dee is involved in the day-to-day running of the business, it is still “her baby” and you can be confident that this is a professional outfit.

I know the days of the “nit nurse” in school are over, but there is still a stigma attached to having headlice. Victoria White recently wrote a column in the Herald about “nits” being a feminist issue, as it is usually the mother’s responsibility to detect and destroy the infestation. I know in the years to come if headlice are an issue in our family my first port of call will be to these professionals, letting someone else do the dirty work for me. Call me a lazyass, but this is one area where I’d rather not get my hands dirty.

If you are in Ireland and looking to make some extra money, you may consider buying a Rapid Response Unit and run your own small business dehydrating nits and head lice. If you are interested please contact dee@thehairforce.co.uk

Link to The Hairforce website www.thehairforce.co.uk
Visit The Hairforce – Lice Assassins on Facebook

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