Dandruff, a common skin disorder characterized by white flakes all over the scalp (and shoulders!), can be frustrating to deal with because it often appears to be next to impossible to get rid of. If you’re struggling with dandruff and nothing appears to be working, know that you’re not alone – it’s estimated that about 50% of world population has been affected by this scalp condition at least once in their life.
Dandruff can have various causes, so what works for one person may very well not work for another. But there is hope – here, we lay out all recommended strategies against dandruff, so make sure you read, evaluate, and try out different methods for dealing with stubborn dandruff.
How to Eliminate Flakes
The common route for eliminating those annoying white flakes includes anti-dandruff shampoos. Many people usually try those first in the hopes of getting rid of dandruff but soon find out that the condition returns after a few weeks. But that doesn’t mean they’re not working – it may just mean you’ve picked the wrong shampoo for your condition, or that you’re not using it properly.
- Pick a medical anti-dandruff shampoo based on your scalp condition (dry, oily, normal, etc.). For example, the ingredient zinc pyrithione lowers inflammation and eliminates certain types of bacteria and yeast, while salicylic acid exfoliates the skin.
- If you have oily scalp and dandruff, wash your hair every or every other day. You may think that you would be stripping oil from your scalp by washing your hair daily, and in the case of normal hair and skin that would be true; however, when you have oily scalp and dandruff, there is usually an overproduction of oil happening, and you want to combat that.
- If you have dry scalp and dandruff, wash your hair once or twice a week.
- Alternate between anti-dandruff shampoos weekly.
- If you can’t tell whether your skin is dry, oily or normal, see a board-certified dermatologist who will be able to recommend the best shampoo for your hair and skin type.
If you’ve tried many anti-dandruff shampoos but none seem to be working for you, or you want to boost your fight against the white flakes with something natural, try:
ACV: after shampooing your hair, rinse with a diluted solution of vinegar to change the pH of your scalp and get rid of the flakes. Use at least 5 days to notice a difference.
TTO: Tea tree oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties which can help you eliminate dandruff. Just rub a few drops of TTO into your scalp, go to bed, and then wash in the morning.
Coconut oil: this oil has antiviral, antimicrobial and antifungal properties, and it’s a great choice for those with dry scalp and dandruff. Massage a little bit of oil into your scalp, go to bed, and wash in the morning.