Flakes in your hair, from your head, probably makes you believe that you have dandruff. So, what do you do? You get a dandruff shampoo and use it to wash your hair?
Well, you may not have dandruff at all, you may simply have dry scalp. They are not the same. Dandruff, also known as Seborrhea, is an inflammatory skin disease. Dry scalp is simply dry scalp, causing the skin to flake and any dry skin eventually might.
Dry scalp is most commonly caused by:
- Washing hair too often and stripping the scalp of natural oils
- Using a shampoo that contains Sodium Laureth/Lauryl Sulphate (SLES/SLS)
- Using baking soda as a hair wash–this popular ‘no poo’ method may have many benefits for certain hair types, but baking soda is very alkaline and can cause skin irritation for some people
- Weather changes, humidity levels
In short, your scalp’s pH balance is likely off. How do you easily correct that?
- Wash hair less often and use a SLS-free shampoo
- Massage nourishing oils like tea tree oil into the scalp; leave on overnight (shampoo in the morning); tea tree oil helps balance the scalp’s pH (as do some other nourishing oils)
- Once a week, rinse your scalp with a diluted apple cider vinegar solution. Dry skin is alkaline, meaning it has a high pH (normal skin has a pH of 5.5). Apple cider vinegar will help to decrease the scalp’s pH, therefore balancing the alkalinity of dry skin.
- Just like your face, exfoliate regularly. Using a large makeup or pastry brush, apply full fat greek yogurt to your scalp (sounds crazy, right?), cover with a cap and let sit for 30 minutes. The lactic acid in the yogurt will help to gently break down dead skin cells, leaving your scalp flake free.
And, as a bonus, if you do have dandruff, the tea tree oil and apple cider vinegar may also help to alleviate that problem.
If you try the above, and flakes persist, you should consult your doctor.