How to Clean Barbie Doll Hair

Barbie has a special place in the heart of little girls and doll collectors all over the world. With gentle care, Barbie can last for a lifetime and be passed down from mother to daughter. Hair care is an important component of doll care because the hair can get dirty and matted with rough play or careless storage. Here is a gentle method to clean and condition Barbie doll hair.

Undress the doll. You do not want to get her clothes wet during the hair washing. Cover the doll's body with a dry wash cloth to minimize the amount of water that will drip on her during the washing.

Detangle the doll's hair. Divide the dolls hair into three sections. Examine the hair for debris. Remove any debris with your fingers. Take a metal comb and begin detangling the first section from the ends to the roots. Use the comb to remove any remaining debris from the doll's hair as you detangle. Once all the tangles are gone, pass the comb through the hair from roots to the ends. Repeat on each section.

Pour a small amount of moisturizing conditioner in your hands and smooth the conditioner onto the doll's dry hair. Comb the conditioner through Barbie's hair with the metal comb to distribute evenly. This conditioner will keep the shampoo from drying out Barbie's hair. You can use the same conditioner that you plan to apply after shampooing.

Turn on the faucet and run the water until lukewarm. Hold Barbie under the faucet face down with her hair hanging forward loose. Rinse out the conditioner with lukewarm water. Turn off the faucet. This early conditioning step helps soften Barbie's hair, discourage the formation of tangles and protect the hair from any harsh effects of shampoo. Wrap a dry wash cloth around Barbie's hair to remove excess water.

Dispense a small amount of gentle shampoo into your hands and rub the palms together. Apply the shampoo to Barbie's hair until all of the hair is covered. Turn on the faucet to lukewarm water. Hold the doll under the faucet and rinse her hair thoroughly. Pat Barbie's hair with a fresh dry wash cloth to absorb some of the water, then place her on a towel.

Look at the doll's hair to make sure it is completely clean. If it still feels dirty, repeat Step 5. If the hair is clean, you are ready for the conditioning treatment. The conditioning treatment is important to keep Barbie's hair soft, shiny and easy to comb.

Pour a generous amount of conditioner onto your hands and apply it to Barbie's hair. Let it sit on her hair for 3 minutes. Turn on the faucet to warm water. Hold the doll's hair under the faucet and rinse out the conditioner. Place a dry wash cloth around Barbie's hair to gently dry her hair. Take a towel and dry off Barbie's body.

Place Barbie in a doll stand. Spray leave-in conditioner in her hair. Take the metal comb and detangle her hair. Let her hair hang loose and air dry overnight. Or if you plan to curl her hair, add doll curlers and air dry her hair overnight. In the morning, brush her hair with a wire wig brush. If her hair feels a little rough, add a tiny amount of baby oil to her hair. Brush the oil through her hair. Your Barbie should now have clean, soft, shiny, bouncy hair.


Keep Barbie's hair braided during play to keep her hair tangle-free and lengthen times between washings. Store Barbie in a doll case or toy box to keep her hair clean and free of dust. You can find metal combs and doll curlers at doll specialty shops. Metal dog combs are a good substitute if you cannot find a metal doll comb. Add waves to Barbie's hair. After shampooing and conditioning her hair, create one or two braids and air dry overnight. In the morning, Barbie will have beach girl waves.


Do not use dish-washing detergent and fabric softeners to wash and condition Barbie's hair. The detergent is harsh and can dry out the doll's hair. Fabric softeners may fade Barbie's hair color.

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