The Louisiana mom-of-five who sprayed her hair with Gorilla Glue has finally had the adhesive removed from her locks with the help of a Los Angeles plastic surgeon after a month-long ordeal that saw her burn her scalp with acetone and hack off her ponytail in an attempt to free her tresses.
Tessica Brown, 40, traveled to Los Angeles from her home in Violet, Louisiana, on Wednesday to visit Beverly Hills surgeon Dr. Michael Obeng, who dissolved the Gorilla Glue and rescued the mother’s hair during a $12,500 procedure that took four hours to complete.
In a video taken at Dr. Obeng’s office, Tessica – who was given a light anesthesia before the treatment – is seen lying on an operating table after the successful procedure, running her hands through her freed locks and tearing up with relief while marveling at the sensation.
Dr. Obeng, who offered Tessica the pricey treatment for free after seeing her plight online, used a custom mix of chemicals and natural products in order to dissolve the glue, having first practiced on a dummy head to ensure his formula would work.
Dr. Obeng used a mix of medical-grade adhesive remover, MGD – which is a mix of aloe vera and olive oil – and a small amount of acetone to break down the glue in Tessica’s hair.
‘I looked up the compound, the main active ingredient in Gorilla Glue: polyurethane,’ Dr. Obeng explained to TMZ. ‘Then we figured out the science, how to break it down.’
He continued: ‘We bought chemicals that have components to dissolve the solvent, we used medical-grade adhesive remover that we use in the operating room.
‘Then we have another active ingredient, MGD. We added MGD to it – which is an aloe vera and olive oil mixture. Then we added a little acetone.’
During the procedure, the mixture was applied to Tessica’s hair using a spray bottle, while Dr. Obeng used medical tweezers and scissors to try and gently pull the matted hair apart, cutting the strands of glue that were holding her tresses together.
The doctor and his tea, then ran a comb through the hair to finally remove the glue, before applying a deep conditioning treatment to protect the locks.
Tessica was given painkillers and steroids to reduce the swelling and inflammation caused by the glue – and the chemicals that she used to try and remove it.
Remarkably, Dr. Obeng was able to salvage much of Tessica’s hair – although she admitted after the procedure that she wishes she had visited him before asking her sister to chop off her lengthy ponytail in the hopes of removing the glue.
‘I can scratch it!’ Tessica told the camera while running her nails along her scalp. ‘Now I wish I had waited for my sister to cut my ponytail off.’
The mother-of-five revealed that she is now planning to get extensions to restore some length to her short locks, however she has been told that she needs to wait at least six weeks before doing so.
In the meantime, Tessica is going to work with what she has left – joking that she needs to get her short locks styled ahead of Valentine’s Day, for which she already has a date lined up.
Prior to visiting Dr. Obeng, Tessica had taken several drastic steps to try and remove the permanent glue spray herself, having been stuck with rigid, immovable locks for more than a month.
When she first shared her story on TikTok, Tessica explained that she sprayed the glue in her hair after running out of her favorite Göt2b Glued Spray.
To her horror, she soon realized that the adhesive offered a much more permanent fix than hairspray – and in her first viral video, she revealed that she had made 15 attempts to wash the glue out of her hair with no success.
In the days after her post went viral, Tessica visited a local ER, where doctors used acetone on her scalp – which burned her scalp, but did little to remove the glue – and she then enlisted her sister to apply Goof Off glue remover to her locks to soften them up before cutting off Tessica’s lengthy ponytail.
While the move offered the business owner some relief from the headaches she had been suffering from, the hair on her head remained firmly fixed in place by the rock-hard glue.
It was then that Tessica revealed her plans to travel to Los Angeles to visit Dr. Obeng, after he reached out to her online and revealed that he knew exactly how to free her locks from the adhesive once and for all.
Earlier, Tessica opened up about the ‘extreme’ headaches she has been suffering from and her failed attempts to remove the spray glue in a candid interview with Entertainment Tonight, insisting she never meant to go viral when she shared her story on TikTok.
‘I never was going to take this to social media. The reason I took this to social media was because I didn’t know what else to do,’ she told ET’s Melicia Johnson. ‘And I know somebody out there could have told me something. I didn’t think for one second when I got up the next morning it was gonna be everywhere.’
In the video, which has been viewed more than 28 million times, Tessica explained that she sprayed Gorilla Glue on her hair after she ran out her Göt2b Glued Spray and hasn’t been able to move it for a month.
While speaking to ET, she noted she was in a hurry when she picked up the industrial-strength adhesive spray and ‘definitely’ regrets the last-minute decision.
Tessica said she had used the Gorilla Glue before for other things and thought it would just ‘wash right out.’ When traditional shampoo failed to remove the glue, she tried olive and tea tree oils, but nothing worked.
It was then that she turned to TikTok looking for advice.
As of Thursday, hundreds of thousands of people have commented on the video, including Gorilla Glue. The company suggested that she try using rubbing alcohol to remove the glue, but the at-home remedy ended up being another failure.
The morning after she posted the TikTok she went to to the emergency room at St. Bernard Parish Hospital in Chalmette, Louisiana, where healthcare workers tried removing the glue using ‘little acetone packs’ that burned her scalp.
She denied reports that she spent 22 hours in the ER, explaining that she was told it would take them roughly 20 hours to remove the glue at the hospital.
The working mom, who owns Tessica’s Little Angels daycare and runs the Dazzling Divaz dance team, made the decision to use the acetone wipes at home because she couldn’t be away from her kids for that long.
Tessica admitted that the scrutiny and criticism that she has received has made her wish that she never posted the video.
‘I told my son today, ‘I wish I could just go back,’ because I’m over it. I’m over it,’ she said. ‘I’m usually the person that I don’t care what people say. I just move at my own pace. I don’t care what people say, but it’s just getting to the point where people are on TV saying stuff about me.’
Tessica especially took offense to claims that she purposely sprayed the glue on her hair because was seeking online fame.
‘Who in their right mind would say, ‘Oh well, let me just spray this in my head and become famous overnight?” she asked. ‘Never! Who would want them to do that? I needed somebody to tell me how to take this off, that’s all it was.’
However, she explained that what has been most hurtful — for both her and her school-age daughters — is being publicly branded ‘Gorilla Glue Girl.’
‘My name is Tessica,’ she said. ‘Every time somebody puts up something on social media, that’s it, my inbox is flooded. Don’t worry about this thing. Yeah, y’all can say that.
‘This is what my momma keeps telling me, ‘Stop reading the comments.’ But I can’t help myself. I go read them, and they’re still sending me clips of what happened…It’s way, way, way, too much.’
Tessica said the unwanted media attention has negatively affected her daughters, recalling how her one little girl wouldn’t let her do her hair the other day.
Despite the onslaught of criticism, the mom has also received plenty of support, including messages from Missy Elliott, Chance the Rapper, and Beyoncé’s hairstylist, Neal Farinah, who offered her a wig.
‘A lot of people want to give me hair,’ she said, ‘but the reason I wasn’t accepting it is because I don’t want people to be like, ‘Oh, that’s why she did it.”
Since Tessica first shared her story last week, she has racked up hundreds of thousands of followers across her social media accounts. She now has more than 866,000 fans on TikTok and over 756, 000 on Instagram.
Her Instagram account has even been verified with a blue check, something that is usually only given to celebrities and public figures.
She has also updated her bio to include an email address for her new manager — suggesting that she may have already been sent partnership opportunities by brands eager to capitalize on the viral interest surrounding her sticky saga.
Tessica started a GoFundMe account with a goal of $1,500 to buy the wigs she was told she would need, but she has raised more than $18,000 in donations as of Wednesday.
She told ET that she will be putting the rest of the money towards her medical expenses as she fears her hair may never grow back.
‘From us reading about everything — and already done start happening — [I’m getting] extreme headaches,’ she explained. ‘And the [doctors] said by the time they get it all out or cut it all off, I may have scalp damage and in some parts it may never grow back.’
However, she has denied reports that she has hired an attorney and is considering suing Gorilla Glue over the mishap, admitting: ‘I made a mistake.’
Gorilla Glue released a statement about the situation on social media Monday.
‘We are aware of the situation and we are very sorry to hear about the unfortunate incident that Miss Brown experienced using our Spray Adhesive on her hair,’ the brand tweeted. ‘We are glad to see in her recent video that Miss Brown has received medical treatment from her local medical facility and wish her the best.’
Tessica said she doesn’t understand where the company’s statement and reports of her getting a lawyer are coming from.
As for her hair itself, she told the publication that it was starting to loosen up a bit. On Tuesday, she shared a video of her sister hacking off her long ponytail in an attempt to remove the glue.
Tessica sat with her head in her hands while her sister applies Goof Off superglue remover to her hair in the hopes of softening her rock-hard locks enough to cut through it with scissors.
‘We’ve been using acetone every day trying to soften it up,’ Tessica’s sibling explained. ‘It kind of feels like it may have softened up a bit, but we’re going to use this [Goof Off].
‘We have some on here already but I’m going to add a little more and then we’re just going to cut this whole ponytail off and try to let it breathe a little bit.’
Using a large pair of orange-handled kitchen scissors, Tessica’s sister cut off the ponytail near the base, getting as close to her sibling’s head as possible.
‘So this is kind of what it looks like now,’ she said while showing off the short tuft at the back of Tessica’s head. ‘I was able to get the ponytail off, but it’s still not opening it up as you all can see.
‘It’s still kind of hardened so we’re not letting the air in too much, but there’s a little opening right there. So she might get a little bit of air out of there but not much because it’s still pretty hard.’
In an Instagram update shared after her failed trip to the hairstylist, Tessica revealed that she was going to travel to Los Angeles in order to meet with a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon who claimed he can remove the glue from her head once and for all.
‘I will be leaving tomorrow to go see a surgeon,’ she wrote while thanking her new legion of followers for their concern.
Dr. Michael Obeng reached out to Tessica to offer his assistance, saying he can remove the adhesive with a medical-grade glue dissolver, but he believes the process could take up to three days.
According to TMZ, the procedure would ordinarily cost a staggering $12,500, but Dr. Obeng has told Tessica he will do it for free.
‘I will update you guys the second I have news,’ Tessica concluded her post. ‘Again thank you so much.’
Tessica was seen arriving in Los Angeles on Wednesday wearing a red graphic hoodie. She covered her hair with a white cap topped with the hood of her sweatshirt.
She was also wearing a surgical mask, and the combination of the hat and face covering made her virtually unrecognizable as she walked with her head down.
The mom announced she was flying to LA on Instagram earlier in the day, writing: ‘Prayers for Traveling Grace. On my way to LA to get this glue out of my head finally.’