Now that the cold weather is here some of you can probably relate to scratching your scalp inconspicuously while you're trying to prevent flakes from settling on your shoulders. However, there is no need to suffer silently. If you have had flakes and dryness for a while, you can finally get some relief from dry scalp without all of the expensive products and treatments.
Sugar scalp scrub
If you suffer from dry scalp then you can relate to having what looks like a mini blizzard surrounding you whenever you scratch your scalp. Every time you scratch, the excess skin cells are being shed.
A simple fix for getting rid of these excess flakes is to gently scrub them away when you cleanse your hair. Put five tablespoons of sugar (preferably brown as the crystals are larger) in a bowl then slowly add olive oil or your favorite oil to it to form a paste. Before shampooing section your hair and apply the paste to your scalp and rub gently in a circular motion then shampoo and condition as normal.
Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil — obtained from the leaves of the Australian tea tree — has been used for centuries by Australia’s aboriginal people to cure many skin and scalp ailments. If you are suffering from dry scalp then adding a few drops of tea tree oil to your shampoo and conditioner can help to sooth your scalp and act as an anti fungal killing any bacteria that causes the overproduction of skin cells creating flakes.
Add 5-10 drops of tea tree to your shampoo or condish for every 8oz of product depending on the severity of your condition. After about a month of using your new shampoo and conditioner, you should see an improvement in your scalp. If you don’t want to go the DIY route, just purchase a shampoo and conditioner set containing teat tree oil.
Hot oil treatment
As the name implies, dry scalp can be caused by the scalp being dehydrated. To combat the dryness, using a simple hot oil treatment once a week when you cleanse your hair can make a world of difference. The oil acts as a barrier on the scalp preventing it from losing moisture during the cleansing process.
Warm about a ½ cup of oil in the microwave for no more than 20 seconds. Ensure that the oil is not too hot before applying it to your hair. Part your hair and apply the oil to your scalp using an applicator bottle to make the process easier. When your scalp is thoroughly saturated, use the pads of your fingers to massage the oil into your scalp. Finish by shampooing and conditioning as normal.
While shampoos do a wonderful job of getting all of the build up out of our hair and scalp, they can also strip your hair and scalp of moisture leaving them very dry. We often replenish the moisture for our hair, but we neglect to put the moisture back into our scalp. Many of us will suffer no ill effects from this, but for the unlucky few, the negative side effect will be a dry scalp. To combat this issue, simply switch to a moisturizing shampoo, preferably one that is sulfate free.
MORE: Sulfate Free Shampoos
Oiling the scalp
If you suffer from dry scalp, the most obvious fix would be to moisturize it. But don’t reach for your jar of grease. Grab your bottle of oil instead. Grease simply forms a layer on top of the scalp and does not have the ability to moisturize it. Oils like jojoba, on the other hand, closely resemble the natural sebum produced by the skin and helps to moisturize it.
After washing your hair, use an applicator bottle to apply oil to your scalp, then massage it in using the pads of your fingers. Reapply to your scalp as needed throughout the week. You should not oil your scalp if it is has a lot of build up and flakes, since this will only clog your scalp even more and make the situation worse. Ensure that you thoroughly cleanse your scalp before moisturizing it.
Now that you have five easy fixes for a healthier scalp, I hope that this winter will be one free of itching, scratching and flaking. Happy hair growing!