Are you currently experiencing an itchy, flaky, or greasy scalp? If the answer is yes, chances are, you might be dealing with dandruff. While dandruff is a common skin condition, it can be difficult to treat. But fret not because you can use this list of simple home remedies for dandruff that are so accessible that you can find them right in your pantry.
Now before you sprinkle your scalp with spices and condiments, understanding what causes dandruff will help you to effectively find solutions to get rid of it.
Dandruff is the result of dead skin cells that fall off the scalp and appear as white flakes on the hair. The main cause of dandruff is the presence of a fungus called Malassezia. While Malassezia feeds on sebum, the natural oils of the scalp fuel the dandruff-causing fungus. Other factors that may cause dandruff are age, hormones, stress, and using hair products with ingredients that may be too harsh on the scalp.
Malassezia also causes another skin condition called Seborrheic Dermatitis. It has similar symptoms with dandruff, but is more severe, and typically occurs on the scalp causing redness, irritation, itch, and skin flakes.
So now that you know more about how and what causes dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis to happen, it is important to find the right solutions to combat these scalp conditions for good. Let us start with what you can find at home.
Baking soda absorbs the excess sebum that the scalp produces and keeps the extra grease from forming into dandruff. It also has antifungal properties that function as exfoliants in removing excess skin cells, as well as balancing the pH level of the scalp.
This dandruff home remedy should be used in moderation since baking soda can be abrasive and applying it on your scalp frequently can cause further damage. Its high pH level can strip off the natural oils from your scalp and hair leaving it with further scalp irritation. However, with proper use and application, baking soda can effectively clean your hair without damaging it.
Make your own baking soda shampoo by combining one teaspoon of baking soda and 2 cups of water; mix until it turns to a cloudy solution. Apply the mixture directly to your scalp and gently massage. Let it sit for 2 minutes, then rinse. Follow it up with an apple cider vinegar solution to bring back your scalp’s normal pH of 4-5.
Lemon Hair Scrub
Lemons can bring zest not only to food but also to your scalp. The citric acid found in lemons helps in removing the dandruff-causing bacteria on your scalp and its antimicrobial properties can further prevent fungal activity.
To make an easy lemon hair scrub dandruff remedy at home, mix equal parts of sea salt, lemon juice, and oil. Wet your hair then massage the mixture into the scalp and let it sit for 7-10 minutes. Rinse off the lemon hair scrub and wash your hair thoroughly with shampoo.
This home remedy combination can remove dry flakes without drying out the scalp. Adding sea salt helps loosen up and exfoliates dandruff on the scalp. This ingredient also removes built-up dead skin and absorbs excess oil to prevent clogged scalp pores and irritation. While the fatty acids of olive oil coats the hair, keeping it moisturized and protected from damage.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is known for its various health benefits and adding to our list is how it treats the scalp from dandruff. The acidity level of ACV helps remove dandruff by rebalancing the scalp’s natural pH levels and at the same time soothe an irritated scalp. ACV also has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that prevent further growth of dandruff-causing yeast that can cause dryness and an itchy scalp.
Cleanse your scalp with an ACV solution by mixing two tablespoons of ACV with six tablespoons of water in a cup. After shampooing, tip your head and slowly pour the mixture over your hair, working it into your scalp and making sure it does not get into your eyes. Let the solution sit for a couple of minutes, then rinse it out.
Among all these ingredients on the list, you might wonder if these natural remedies can get rid of dandruff?
So far, the answer is no. Regulatory organizations around the world, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have assessed many different compounds’ effectiveness at fighting dandruff.
At this stage, no home remedy for dandruff has been proven to be as effective as an anti-dandruff shampoo.
Using an anti-dandruff shampoo
Head & Shoulders Cool Menthol Anti-Dandruff Shampoo helps prevent the recurrence of flaking and itching that causes dandruff. It has zinc carbonate – a powerful active ingredient used to fight flakes without drying the scalp. It also has cocamidopropyl betaine that fights dandruff better by cleansing the scalp without stripping its moisture. This product cleanses the scalp and leaves it with a menthol fresh feeling while also keeping hair moisturized, pH balanced, boosted with antioxidants for gentle care!
There are many simple at-home remedies to treat dandruff and endless tutorials online to show you how to use them. However, products that are backed by research and have the ingredients to keep dandruff at bay are more effective. No natural remedy is as effective in removing dandruff as Head & Shoulders products*.
*P&G Calculation based on Nielsen syndicated total country database for the Shampoo category of July 2018-June 2019