Dry Scalp

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 943
I thought what I had was dandruff, but no dandruff shampoos are helping. I use a generic version of prescription Nizoral, and it seemed to help it first, but now it's just making it worse because it dries my scalp out more. I guessed that I had dry scalp from the beginning since I have dry skin all over. I can deal with a dry scalp, but I also have light flaking. It's not as bad as it was in my teens, but it's still flaking. what can I do other than drink more water? I've heard that moisturizing the scalp is actually bad because the product lays on the scalp and makes things worse. I use a gentle sulfate shampoo, Nature's Gate Lavendar and Aloe, but is there something else I can do, maybe with my conditioning? I've tried Neutrogena's Dry Scalp shampoo, but it didn't help. Anyone else have this problem?
I have a dry scalp too, although I haven't seen flaking for years. I'm no expert, but I've been told that dry scalp can be a result of an allergy to hair products. I've been water washing with baking soda on the days I don't shampoo, and it relieves the itching. I just place about a quarter-size of baking soda in my palm, add a few drops of water to make a paste, place it on my scalp and massage. That might be something for you to try. Just an thought.
My daughter has had a flakey, crusty scalp since she was an infant. Doing the curly girl (no shampoo) method has helped her tremendously. The only time she had trouble this past year was during the coldest days of winter. Then she came up with some kind of tea tree oil concoction that helped her.

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3A hair; coloring with henna/indigo since July 2009; normally follow the CG method. Still searching for my HG products!

I have a itchy dry scalp at times , i notice that washing with condish has helped , also i just got the PM tea tree poo and thats help alot! i have no itchy or dryness for the past 2 days sinced i pooed with it. so far its gone.
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 943
FuzzyMonster - I used to wash my hair with a baking soda paste once or twice a week to clarify, and it seemed to really help my scalp. I'm not sure why I got away from doing that, but I'm going to try it tomorrow.

Brio - I tried the CG routine, and it helped my scalp, but my hair was a flat, flyaway mess. I didn't go back to shampooing every day though, like I always used to do, and my scalp has benefitted from this. I also learned about sulfates from NC.com, and have since only used shampoos with the gentler sulfates. I don't use styling products at all unless I'm wearing my hair wavy/curly (which is close to never since my hair has gotten so much straighter and finer in the past couple of years). I'm going to try using a baking soda paste to wash with at least for one or two shampoos a week and see what happens. Maybe the shampoos I'm using are still too harsh for my scalp, though I've tried Aubrey Organics and other poos w/no sulfates, and my hair becomes a flat mess.

I could've gotten away with doing the CG routine had I done it when my hair was actually curly, but it's like my hair is reverting back to the hair I had as a child (i.e. fine, straight). Guess this isn't the best place to look for advice on slightly wavy hair, but the only other hair site I used to frequent shut down. Though, some of the things posted here can also apply to straight hair too I guess - can't hurt to try anyway!

Thanks you guys!
CurlyMireya, I'm not sure my suggestion about the baking soda was a good one after all. Someone on another topic said baking soda is drying. I just started doing some research and found the information below. I haven't done any research on the site where I got the info, so I'm not sure if it's a reputable site or not. All that to say, proceed with caution! Good luck. Here's the link to the site where I found the info:

"Relationship between hair and baking soda
First of all, baking soda is used as a dry shampoo for dogs or cats. As cleaners for pets are not covered by The Medicine Act of Health in Japan, it does not matter what compounds they contain. If something harmful happens, production is merely stopped. This can not be the case for a product applied to humans.

In fact, there would be some problems if baking soda were used for shampoo/soap for humans. For example, baking soda has the ability to eliminate strong odours so that it might change the smell of perfumed materials. In addition, it might damage skin, although there are differences between individuals.
Baking soda is sometimes used as one of the agents in bath powder. In fact, some hot springs in Japan contain sodium hydrogen carbonate, so this kind of hot spring is called baking soda hot spring (Jyuso-sen in Japanese) in Japan (see picture on left). It is alkaline at high temperature because of reaction (1). Baking soda hot springs containing many kinds of sodium salts, have some good effects, for example, soap works better, it softens the surface of the skin, and it removes fat and body secretions on the skin, etc. In order to imitate real hot springs, not only baking soda but also emulsifiers are added to bath powder.

However, people might feel a chill after taking a baking soda spring bath since baking soda takes water out of the skin. This implies that baking soda could remove even water needed for skin and hair if it remained on the surface for a long time.

As for the question about whether baking soda is good for hair, baking soda is usually used to remove hard dirt on pots or frying pans. But the protein in hair is fragile. In addition, 90% of the dirt on hair can be removed by washing with warm water only. Therefore, my conclusion is that you don't have to use baking soda to wash your hair."
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 943
Thanks for posting that, FM. I remember that the baking soda did dry my hair a little, but it seemed gentler than shampoos with the harsh sulfates. The Nizoral shampoo I use that is meant for seborhaic dermatitis tears my hair apart! It is meant for killing fungi which, despite what my doc says, I don't believe I have. From what I understand, most people who have run of the mill dandruff have oily scalps and skin, whereas mine are dry. It gave the illusion that it worked at first because it cleared my scalp of all the flaky build-up, kind of like what exfoliating does for skin. But then the dry skin comes back, worse than before. I think that this is maybe what the baking soda's deal is. I will give it a shot and see. I don't suppose it could do any worse than what Nizoral has. I've tried going the alternate route and went for very moisturizing shampoos and conditioners + deep treatments. This made my hair limp and my scalp didn't improve. I've basically resigned myself to having a dry scalp and alligator legs, but I occasionally feel hopeful and ask for advice.
Maybe the key to using baking soda correctly is to use it only once or twice a week. I was using it 5-6 times a week, which now I believe would cause dryness eventually. But I agree with you--maybe baking soda isn't worse than the harsh shampoos that aren't helping you!

Good luck; keep us posted on how it goes!
I have eczema which effects my scalp. I know that it is NOT nice. It's not dandruff, I quite agree.

My doctor actually told me (when I was a child) that dandruff shampoo (original head and shoulders for example) will actually make things worse as they're too harsh for the sensative scalps. Of course, now there are loads of variations on that and they make shampoos for sensative people.

Anyway, I was prescribed a shampoo called Polytar when I was at school, I don't know how it is with curls but it might fix the dry problem. I also find T-Gel a HUGE relief they do a sensative version. It's very therapeutic.

Good luck.
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 943
I used a baking soda paste to wash my hair twice this week. I didn't get the same results as before. I don't think it helped my scalp at all, and the paste seemed to adhere to my hair and didn't want to wash out. I rinsed my hair very well each time, but my hair was actually hard and separated-like. It also didn't clean my hair well at all - it was oily when I NEVER have oily hair. I don't know what went wrong. I used a different brand of baking soda this time, so maybe that has something to do with it. It didn't want to spread throughout my hiar like shampoo does. It just wanted to stick to where I applied it, so it didn't cleanse at all. I think I'll try it again with a different brand and check the date on this box to make sure it's not expired (but I doubt it is because I use it for baking and am very careful about dates).

I remember the reason I quit using it before is because it can strip hair color. I'm not coloring now, or at least not as often, so that's not a problem. It also dried my hair a little, but it really helped my scalp. Hmm... I think I'll try a coffee scrub too, because those also helped my scalp.

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