How to get rid of dry scalp

A dry scalp is a by-product, of dormant or inactive oil glands in the scalp, in the form of small white flakes. These oil glands are inactive as they are incapable of producing the natural amount of oil in the skin. To treat this, there are a variety of home remedies and commercial products that can be of use.

Causes for Dry Scalp

The following are some of the common causes for dry scalp

  • Eczema, which is most commonly found in babies and children.
  • Not washing the hair often can also cause itchiness and dry scalp due to the dirt residue and oil present on the scalp.
  • Constant stress can affect us physically and one way is by causing a dry scalp which, later in time, can lead to hair fall.
  • The weather also affects the scalp. In colder regions, when weather is extreme ie, cold outdoors but warm indoors, the scalp does get affected. The immediate change in weather forces the scalp to become dry.
  • Fungal Infection which happens due to improper care for the scalp is one of the major causes of dry scalp.
  • The scalp also gets hugely affected by the food that one consumes. Adequate nutrition is necessary for a healthy and problem-free scalp.

20 home remedies for dry scalp

Egg yolk

Ingredients

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Steps

  1. Beat the egg yolk extremely well and mix in the olive oil and lemon juice thoroughly.
  2. Apply this mask on the scalp and let it sit for 30 mins. 
  3. Wash it off with lukewarm water and a mild shampoo.
  4. After this, rinse the scalp with cold water.
  5. Repeat this method once a week.

Baking Soda

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 2-3 tablespoons of rose water

Steps

  1. Mix the baking soda and the rose water well, until a paste is formed.
  2. Apply this on the scalp and gently massage for 3 minutes.
  3. Rinse it off with cold water. 
  4. Repeat this method two times a week to get the best results.

Onion Juice

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup onion juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Cotton

Steps

  1. Extract the juice of the onion by grating it.
  2. Add the honey and mix it well. 
  3. Apply this mixture on the scalp, with the help of a cotton ball and let it sit for 30 minutes.
  4. Wash the hair with warm water and regular shampoo.
  5. Repeat this method twice in a week.

Coconut Oil

  • Method 1

Ingredients

  • Enough coconut oil for the hair and scalp in a bowl
  • A few drops of tea tree oil

Steps

  1. Take the bowl with coconut oil and warm it well.
  2. Add the tea tree oil and mix it well.
  3. Apply this mix on the scalp and massage the scalp for 7-8 minutes.
  4. Keep this oil on the head for an hour (at least). It is preferred to keep it on overnight and then wash it off using a mild shampoo and warm water.
  5. Repeat this oil treatment 2 times in a week.
  • Method 2 

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon of grape juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Steps

  1. Heat the coconut oil on a low flame. 
  2. With the flame switched off, add the grape and lemon juice and mix well. 
  3. Apply this mixture on the scalp and leave it on for 15 minutes.
  4. Tie a towel around the head with the hair locked in and keep this for 15 minutes.
  5. Use the regular shampoo and conditioner to wash the hair after this.
  6. Repeat this process 2 times in a week for the best results.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • Cotton ball

Steps

  1. Using a cotton ball, apply the apple cider vinegar on the scalp.
  2. Massage the scalp for 5 minutes, using the fingers. 
  3. Leave it on for 10-15 minutes and rinse it off with cold water and a mild shampoo.
  4. Repeat this method 2 times in a week for the best results.

Tea Tree Shampoo

Ingredients

  • 4-5 drops of tea tree oil
  • Shampoo

Steps

  1. Open the shampoo bottle and add the tea tree oil drops to it.
  2. Shake the bottle well.
  3. Use this mix as the regular shampoo when washing the hair.
  4. Use this mixture twice a week for the best results.

Lemon Juice

  • Ingredients
  • Half a lemon

Steps

  1. Rub the cut lemon on the scalp while squeezing out its juice and gently scrub the scalp.
  2. Scrub the scalp by taking out thin sections of the hair.
  3. Leave it on for 5-10 minutes.
  4. Rinse the hair using water and the usual conditioner one would use.
  5. This process should be done at most 2 times in a week.

Listerine

Ingredients

  • ½ cup Listerine Mouthwash
  • ½ cup water

Steps

  1. Wash the hair and towel dry it.
  2. Mix the water and Listerine together in a bowl.
  3. Apply the diluted solution to the scalp.
  4. Massage the scalp using the fingertips for 5 mins and let it rest for another 5 minutes.
  5. Rinse the hair thoroughly with water.
  6. Repeat this method once in a week for the best results

Mayonnaise

Ingredients

  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • Shower cap

Steps

  1. Apply the mayonnaise on the scalp and cover the head using a shower cap.
  2. Leave it on for 20-25 minutes.
  3. Wash this off well using a mild shampoo.
  4. Apply mayonnaise once a week, for a few weeks until the desired change is noticed.

Aloe Vera

Ingredients

  • 1 aloe leaf
  • Water

Steps

  1. Squeeze out or extract the fresh aloe vera from the leaf.
  2. Mix enough water into it so that a juice-like consistency is formed.
  3. Apply this juice on the scalp and hair and massage the scalp for a few minutes.
  4. Leave it on for 25-30 minutes.
  5. Rinse the hair using water and regular shampoo.
  6. Repeat this process twice a week for the best results.

Milk

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup honey
  • 4-5 drops of olive oil
  • ½ cup milk

Steps

  1. To the milk at room temperature, add the olive oil and honey and mix well.
  2. Apply this mixture on the scalp.
  3. Leave it on for 1-2 hours.
  4. Wash it off thoroughly using shampoo and water.
  5. Use this method once in a week.

Avocado

Ingredients

  • Pulp of one avocado.
  • Water

Steps

  1. Mash the pulp of the avocado and add a bit of water to it. Mix it extremely well. Keep on adding enough water and its mixing till a paste-like consistency is attained.
  2. Apply this on the scalp and leave it on for half an hour.
  3. Wash it off using a mild shampoo.
  4. Use this method at least once in a week.

Honey

Ingredients

  • 1 medium sized ripe banana.
  • 25ml honey

Steps

  1. Heat the honey, just enough to make it less viscous. Do not make it too hot.
  2. Mash the banana and add the warm honey to it. Mix it extremely well.
  3. Apply this paste on the scalp and leave it on for 45 minutes.
  4. Wash the head thoroughly first with water and then with shampoo.
  5. Perform this method once in a week.

Fenugreek

Ingredients

  • 3 teaspoons of fenugreek seeds
  • Water

Steps

  1. Soak the fenugreek seeds in a bowl of water and leave it overnight.
  2. Blend the seeds in a mixer, in the next morning.
  3. Apply this paste to the scalp.
  4. Leave it on till it dries completely and then rinse it off with water.
  5. Repeat this process 2 times in a week.

Shea Butter

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon vitamin E oil
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • ¾ cup shea butter

Steps

  1. Add the vitamin E oil and olive oil to the shea butter in a bowl. 
  2. Heat these ingredients in a double boiler. 
  3. Mix the ingredients well.
  4. Once it is mixed, take it out of the boiler and allow it to cool.
  5. Gently apply the cooled mixture on the scalp and leave it on for 45 minutes.
  6. Wash it off with the regular shampoo.
  7. Do this process once a week for the best results. 

Sage

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sage
  • 2 cups water
  • Cotton ball

Steps

  1. Boil the sage in a vessel with the water on low heat for 5 minutes.
  2. Once the liquid is cooled, apply it on the scalp with the help of a cotton ball.
  3. Leave it on for 30 minutes and then wash it off using a mild shampoo.
  4. Repeat this method 2 times in a week. 

Sesame Oil

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon ginger juice
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice

Steps

  1. Thoroughly mix the sesame oil with the ginger and lemon juice.
  2. Apply this mixture, gently, on the scalp.
  3. Leave it on for 15 minutes.
  4. Rinse it off with a mild shampoo.
  5. Repeat this process 2 times in a week for the best results.

Indian Lilac

Ingredients

  • Handful leaves of the Indian Lilac
  • ½ cup water

Steps

  1. Blend the leaves so that a thick paste is formed. 
  2. Add the water to this paste and apply this on the scalp.
  3. Leave it on for an hour.
  4. Wash it off using a regular shampoo.
  5. Repeat this process once a week.

Yoghurt

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons of unflavoured yoghurt
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 egg

Steps

  1. Beat the egg and yoghurt together to form a smooth paste
  2. Add the honey after this and mix it all well.
  3. Apply this hair mask on the scalp and hair and let it sit for an hour.
  4. Wash it off using a regular shampoo.
  5. Do this process once a week to get the best results.

Over the counter products effective for dry scalp

  • Moroccan Oil Dry Scalp Treatment
  • Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo
  • Desert Essence 100% Jojoba Oil
  • Redken Scalp Relief Dandruff control shampoo
  • Neuma Beauty ReNeu Scalp Therapy
  • Nioxin Scalp Recovery System Kit
  • Selsun Blue Shampoo for Itchy Scalp.

Precautions

The following are some precautions that one must follow to avoid having a dry scalp:

  • Brush the hair regularly as it helps in increasing blood circulation and also distributes the natural oil from the scalp in the hair.
  • Do not style the hair too often as the heat from the straightener or blow-dryers can cause permanent damage to the hair.
  • Do not use alcohol-based shampoos.
  • Carefully select the products that are to be used for the hair as some products may possess chemicals that could harm the hair.
  • Drink plenty of water so that the hair remains hydrated from within. 

Myths and Facts

1. One must always use hot water when washing their hair. This is not true. Hot water tends to make the hair drier which could result in less hair growth and/or more hair fall. Thus it is not at all beneficial to use hot water; instead of hot water, one must use either cold water or lukewarm water. 
2. Dry scalp and psoriasis is the same thing. This is absolutely untrue. A dry scalp causes itchiness on the skin on the scalp along with dryness and white flakes, whereas, in psoriasis, the dryness and itchiness increases with scratching which could lead to bleeding. The skin in psoriasis is also sensitive, red in colour and is inflamed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the difference between dandruff and dry scalp?

A: Dry scalp is the small, white flakes that come off from the scalp whereas dandruff is bigger in size and is more greasy flakes that can also include fungal infection.

Q: Does a dry scalp cause hair loss?

A: Yes, dry scalp can act as a hindrance to hair growth and thus makes the hair follicles on the scalp very weak which could result in hair loss.

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