Nobody likes to see little, dry flakes settling on a shoulder, but more than a fair share of us have been surprised by the telltale evidence of dandruff. The condition is fairly common and may be caused by a variety of issues, from dry skin to an overabundance of a yeast-like fungus called “malassezia.”
The good news about dandruff is that it usually can be managed successfully and rarely requires medical treatment. However, dandruff can sometimes signal conditions that should be seen by a doctor. It is wise to speak with your doctor if your scalp becomes red, painful, or swollen.
Drugstore remedies often control the unsightly evidence of dandruff. There are host of shampoos on the market that specifically target the problem. However, they do not necessarily work well for everyone. The active ingredients in these products can be a little harsh for some people, especially those with sensitive skin.
Fortunately, there are some very simple home remedies that can help control dandruff for many people. Here are a few…
* Stop any remedy immediately if your skin reacts to it.
Aloe Vera is especially helpful if dandruff is caused by an itchy scalp. It’s soothing, cooling effects help relieve the itch and reduce the need to scratch. You can extract gel from an aloe plant or use the store-bought variety. Massage a handful of aloe into your scalp and let it sit for 15 to 30 minutes before washing with a mild shampoo or rinsing with water only.
Baking soda is used for a lot more than baking, like keeping the refrigerator and kitchen sink drain fresh smelling. It can also help eliminate dandruff. How and why? Because baking soda is an alkaline, it can help establish a healthy pH balance in the scalp. Baking soda also can exfoliate the scalp, which gets rid of any dead skin that may be hanging on just waiting to drop on your shoulders. If you want to see if baking soda works for you, wet your hair, sprinkle on some baking soda, work the paste through your hair as if lathering shampoo, and then rinse thoroughly. You can lather up with a mild shampoo as well, but it is not necessary. Some people find their hair feels softer after using baking soda.
The acidic nature of lemon can help restore the scalp’s healthy pH balance. Some people find massaging the scalp with lemon juice on a regular basis helps put a stop to dandruff flakes. Just massage some lemon juice into your scalp and then rinse with water. You can also rub lemon slices directly on the scalp.
Apple cider vinegar is acidic and can help support the scalp’s healthy pH balance. Combine equal parts vinegar and water, massage into your hair after shampooing, and then rinse. You can also wet your hair with the mixture, wrap your head in a towel, and let it sit on your scalp for a while before rinsing. Many people find that about 15 minutes is long enough. Others keep the mixture on longer.