Dealing with a dry, itchy, flaky scalp is irritating and even embarrassing at times. You don’t have to if you know what’s causing it and how to fix it. So here’s a breakdown of the possible causes and the remedies to bring you relief.
What is a dry scalp?
When we’re exposed to high levels of stress, cold, dry weather, pollution, harsh chemicals based hair care products, our scalp barrier becomes weak and starts losing moisture at an alarming rate. This loss of moisture can lead to various degrees of dryness depending on severity. A dry scalp becomes noticeable when we lose so much moisture that our scalp isn’t lubricated enough and starts to cause itching and even flaking.
What are the symptoms of an itchy, flaky, dry scalp?
Having flakes on your scalp doesn’t always equal dandruff—it could be an indication that the scalp is very dry and/or irritated. The symptoms of dry scalp include itching, flaking, redness on scalp surface or a burning sensation. However, it is important to note that dry scalp is different from dandruff. [Read this to learn more about the difference between a dry scalp and dandruff.]
How to treat dryness and improve scalp health?
One of the most important steps in caring for your scalp is to not overwork your hair roots with excess sebum, pollutants and chemicals. Thankfully, there are some simple measures you can take to give your scalp some much needed TLC and help resolve dry scalp issues.
Some hair styling products clog scalp pores with artificial ingredients that could contribute to scalp itching and flaking. Look for ingredients that end with words that end with: -cones, -conols, -silanes, and -siloxanes on the product label. The first step in fixing your scalp is liberating it from these pore-clogging hair styling products. Your scalp will be clean and free from residues, so you’ll have a smoother road ahead when you start repairing your scalp barrier.
Exfoliation is essential in keeping your scalp healthy. Exfoliation removes dead skin cells from your scalp helping get rid of the buildup and allowing nourishing oils to penetrate deeply into hair follicles. We love salicylic acid as it’s gentle yet effective and pairs well with other plant-based ingredients we love. The love we have for it can be seen in our Calm Me Camellia Scalp Treatment Oil.
When your scalp isn’t producing enough sebum, washing it too frequently strips it of natural oils completely. To add to that, using hot water can agitate the scalp further. Add harsh shampoos (with SLS or SLES) and we have a recipe for disaster. Use mild shampoos that are free of harsh chemicals like sulfates, paragons and alcohol. Naturally-derived or Plant-based shampoos get you the benefits of rich plant extracts and botanicals to help soothe and repair a dry scalp. Ingredients like Mushrooms, Hemp Seed help repair scalp barriers. And yes, don’t worry, we love these ingredients and have incorporated them in abundance in our range. To get the most out of the shampoo, use slightly warm water if not cold and massage your scalp gently. Do not shampoo more than 2-3 times a week.
Keeping your scalp moisturised is paramount in keeping your scalp healthy. In addition to using milder, plant-based shampoos that don’t strip away your scalp of its natural oils, it’s important to actively treat and shield your dry scalp. Hemp seed oil, rich in omega-3 and 6, is deeply nourishing to our scalp. It’s especially potent against damage caused by pollution at a cellular level. Moringa oil, in addition to being packed with nutrients and antioxidants, is rich in ‘Behenic acid’ which has been shown to form a shield against pollutants. The idea is to do it once before each shampoo.
These fixes are tried and team switch approved and promise to keep the moisture locked-in. beyond haircare, we recommend that you keep yourself hydrated and focus on a balanced plant-based diet and consult your dietician for vitamin supplements if there’s any severe vitamin deficiency. Have a rad hair day, every day. 🙂