Get rid of Dandruff - Causes and Remedies for Dandruff
Dandruff - the horrible white cloud that doesn't go away
Hello all you dandruff sufferers out there I'm writing this hub (my first hub) to list a whole lot of dandruff remedies I have used on my scalp to help fight my ongoing battle with dandruff.
Basically dandruff is caused by the natural oils of the scalp mixed with dead skin cells. It is a never ending process for the scalp to release natural oils which in turn cause a build up of dead skin cells if not dealt with accordingly.
The main types of dandruff are dry scalp dandruff and oily scalp dandruff , but dandruff sufferers will know one day you have the dry dandruff and the next you find you have those horrible yellowy oily flakes. With this confusion of dry and oily going on it can be almost impossible to find the right product as most shampoo's have either dry or oily scalp written on the front of the bottle.
So lets get to it and teach that dandruff a lesson and maintain a healthy scalp:)
What sort of scalp do you have, Dry or Oily?
Causes of Dandruff
There are many different causes of dandruff and I'm sure if you do your regular search on google most of the time people will mention three things these are
1. Poor Hygiene
2. Hormone Imbalance
3. Poor Diet
Now these 3 causes may be true for some people but for the most of us a hormone imbalance is not the case and switching our diet to one with plenty of fruits and veg is not always enough but for some it may be what they need as the increase intake of fruits and veg will boost the amount of water you consume and may assist your dry scalp concerns.
The poor hygiene reason for dandruff can be misinterpreted a lot and people believe they should be washing there scalp more and some take it overboard and start washing there hair more than once a day. Its very important to wash your hair regularly but overdoing it can cause your natural scalp oils to be washed away leaving you with a very dry scalp.
It's a good idea to take a break from washing your hair and many people find there dandruff improves when they only wash there hair every 3rd day or so, this gives your scalp time to lubricate itself back to a healthy state, but of course this solution only usually works for dry scalp and even then I know even dry scalp people will find by the 3rd day there hair will be quite greasy so best to do it when your staying at home:).
We all need a break from time to time even mr.scalp
Most Common Causes
So apart from the 3 most popular causes of dandruff , from my personal experience and from talking to other dandruff sufferers the most common causes of dandruff can be very different.
Washing your hair too often
This is probably the number 1 mistake I see dandruff sufferers making , its when we see the first sign of dandruff the old tale of poor hygiene comes into our heads so now we start washing our scalps/hair everyday and sometimes more than once a day. This severely drys the scalp by washing away the natural oils/lubricants of the scalp.
I'm sure some of you are thinking yea right as if that's my problem its this product or I should be using this wizz product , that's how a lot of people feel but just giving your head a break can really help so give it a go if you feel like your not giving your scalp a break.
Poor Rinsing Method
This problem usually occurs with people who have had dandruff for quite some time and have seen the damage dandruff is doing to there scalp and hair and are afraid of damaging and usually handle there hair very gentle , sometimes to gently to even remove all the shampoo from there hair during washing.
If your one of these people the best thing to do is to either get a hand held shower head hose thing and make sure your nice and rinsed or gently over a longer period of time massage your scalp and remove all product gently. If you leave shampoo or conditioner in your hair after a wash it can build up and cause even more dandruff and dirt and clog up your pores.
Another overlooked reason for dandruff is poor circulation, maybe we are doing all the right things exercising, maintaining a good diet and taking our vitamins to assist our health but still seeing dandruff. This can be due to poor circulation and all our efforts going to waste as none of the nutrients are able to reach the hair shafts/roots because of the poor circulation.
Proper circulation will carry nutrients through the blood to places it is needed. Some methods for improving circulation are
*- Brush your dry hair gently at least twice a day
*- Massage your scalp for 10 minutes a day using your finger tips , no nails remember to be soft and work around in a your scalp in a circular manner. Alternatively you could try a scalp massager available online or at many health shops , a device with a few prongs coming off it used to improve circulation.
The most popular devices have little balls on the end to avoid scratching and are often made of copper as copper supposedly helps to fight bacteria (not so sure of that one though) I have tried both methods and using your fingers is the most effective by far.
*- take a supplement to help improve general circulation
*- Exercise, go for walks to help bring circulation to your scalp. Its a good way to get the heart pumping blood around your body. Its one of the reasons there aren't so many dandruff sufferers in humid hot area's as these conditions are ideal for providing great circulation and your scalp is constantly cleansing itself.
*- Try to get a bit of sunlight on your scalp, sunlight is known to help lessen the severity of dandruff and things like psoriasis.
*- In the shower try alternating from hot and cold water , it can really improve circulation. Used by many athletes on sore muscles joints makes blood rush to the cold area's, can be quite a thrill in the shower just be careful any asthmatic's out there.
Blow Drying/styling products mousse,gel
The blow dryer is something some of us cannot live without and if you have to use make sure you hold it at a good distance away from your scalp and if you can try and use the cold setting or lowest heat setting whenever possible.
Hair styling products like mousse's and gels/fudge's are also a friend to dandruff and can make things a lot worse. With that being said some styling products can actually provide moisture to your hair and help you fight dandruff so its really a matter of what seeing works for you , my grandpa was a fan of brill cream (not a stylish look all slicked back :) ) but he was always dandruff free so I guess its a good choice no dandruff over style.
A note when buying shampoo's I know there are thousands of different shampoo's out there and its getting very difficult to choose one and when you hear people say "yea keep trying one until you find one that works" its kind of annoying as you will be in the shop forever trying every shampoo and spending a lot of money.
Most dandruff sufferers move away from the chemically enhanced shampoo's as they are really not good for you in the long run, they look for organic type shampoo's containing proteins, and natural ingredients and oils. Its also a good idea to look out for an ingredient called Laureth Sulfate or anything similar to that, this ingredient is commonly found in pool cleaners and is in charge of making a nice strong lather. Laureth Sulfate can cause bad reactions with some people and could be worsening your dandruff so try and stay clear if possible there are many other ingredients used to help you get that nice thick lather.
Also beware of some of those indian herbal anti dandruff shampoo's a lot of it just people trying to cash in on the herbal craze and many people i know have found the shampoo's useless. Just thought i'd save you some time and money
Here is a short list of dandruff remedies and dry scalp treatment that I myself and friends have tested.
Olive Oil / Oil treatments
Oil treatments are very effective at dry scalp treatment and can be an excellent way to penetrate a dry scalp and bring it moisture. There are many different types of oils used on the scalp and not all are equal as some may feel like they bring moisture to the scalp but do not have the ability to actually penetrate your scalp one of these is baby oil which I will discuss later on.
So the most common types of oils used to help fight dandruff are
- Olive oil - Tea Tree Oil
- Wheat Germ Oil
- JoJoba Oil - Soybean Oil
- Sunflower Oil
The most common method when using oil treatments is to apply the oils onto the effected area's of the scalp and leave overnight and wash out in the morning. To make the treatment more effective you can also wrap your head in a warm towel or put a shower cap on and apply heat with a steamer or blow dryer.
I have tried this method and it can be very good to get rid of stubborn dandruff and also very useful on baby's cradle cap , the main thing is that you keep doing it until your scalp has cleared up but remember to wash your hair thoroughly otherwise it can become very greasy.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Now Apple cider vinegar is a nice old remedy for dry scalp treatment that's been used for yonks and its been said to cure many different ailments and is especially effective on dandruff as it fights the fungus and bacteria that causes dandruff and returns your scalp to a neutral PH level.
When choosing your apple cider vinegar its best to go for one that is totally organic and has the mother intact. The mother is the beneficial bacteria found in the apple cider vinegar which contains many vitamins and minerals which will assist hair health. The mother looks like a floating goup inside the apple cider vinegar bottle so you should be able to see it if you hold it up to a light.
The Method for applying apple cider vinegar to your scalp is to either take a cotton bud or cotton ball and apply small dabs onto effected area's. Leave it on your scalp for up to 2 hours before washing.
Apple cider vinegar is very effective at fighting dandruff and you will notice the vinegar works to pull the dead skin cells off the surface even if it may give your scalp a slight smell of vinegar it is probably one of the most effective home remedies.
Applying lemon onto the scalp is also an age old rememdy and works in a similar way that apple cider vinegar works and the lemon juice will eat away at the dead skin cells.
The only down side with using lemon juice is that it may cause your hair to change color slightly so don't go out in the sun when you have applied lemon juice to your scalp. This one best works on people with darker hair.
Another common rememdy people hear about is using baby oil to bring moisture to the scalp and get rid of those pesky dead skin cells. Many mothers recommend it to remove the cradle cap on there baby's heads .
It may work in some cases but because baby oil is made from an artificial proccess it cannot properly penetrate the scalp to bring moisture. It can also be horrible to wash out and can leave your hair very greasy for days, beware this dry scalp treatment.
Now the old egg wash remedy is very commonly used to bring shine and luster to dry and brittle hair and I have found it is also extremely effective in controlling your dandruff and bring moisture to the scalp. The egg wash method is I believe one of the best and most natural out there including apple cider vinegar.
Egg wash method
Mix together one or two eggs with 1-2 tablespoons of water
Apply the egg mixture onto your scalp and leave for 15 minutes up to around 2 hours or so before washing out. After applying the egg mixture to your scalp cover your head with a shower cap. I know this egg method can be very messy but hang in there as it can really help your scalp and hair.
Egg is a very good old fashioned beauty remedy and the vitamins and amino acids from the egg will strengthen and improve the appearance of your hair. Egg contains the amino acids L-methionine and L-cysteine which are sulfar baring amino acids which play an important role in maintaining healthy hair, skin and nails.
This egg method is probably the best method I have found so far and many others have had success using this with the only downside being a smelly scalp if the egg is not rinsed out properly. The egg works very well to lift off dead skin and you will clearly be able to see the dead skin cells after a good egg treatment, the treatment can be improved by applying heat as this helps the egg mixture penetrate the skin and pull up those stubborn dead skin cells. This is my favourite dry scalp treatment method :).
Another remedy for those of you lucky enough to live near the ocean is a good swim the ocean everyday your dandruff can really improve after a few swims in the ocean your dandruff will start lifting up , its one of the best remedies its too bad I live inland:(. natural dry scalp treatment.
Another great remedy that is common at hairdressers and good salons is a hair steamers. Hair steamers are great for bringing moisture to your scalp and hair. It is great for removing dirt buildup on your scalp and especially good for deep conditioning treatments when using leave in protein or amino acid formula's.
I recently bought a hair steamer off amazon and so far my scalp feels a lot better and lot less dry and its considerably cheaper than getting your hair steamed at a salon every time you get a haircut and a lot cheaper than a sauna. The one I purchased is from amazon and is designed for people with dandruff with an ozone function which has the ability to kill the epiphyte on the scalp to prevent dandruff.
Sweat & Dandruff
It is true that sweating can increase the amount of dandruff a person may have but sweating can be a great tool for those people with dry stubborn dandruff.
Going for a run and building up a good scalp sweat will help loosen those hard stubborn dandruff flakes it will also help spread your natural oils around your scalp keeping your scalp happier and making it easier to wash away that dandruff that's been stuck there for the last 3 months.
I am looking into buying a sauna for home but for now the only way to build up a good scalp sweat to remove the dandruff scales is to put something warm on and go for a run or do some skipping. The problem with removing dandruff using the sweat from your scalp is that you have to sweat a lot and for at least 5 - 10 minutes to really loosen those scales.
One more reason why we should all get out there and exercise and sweat out those impurities form our body and get rid of our dandruff, and of course improve circulation to those annoying scalps of ours. goodluck
now I know we have all gone a bit supplement mad lately but there are many out there that can give you the nutrients your scalp craves that you cant get from whole foods alone.
The most common vitamins and supplements used for dandruff are
- a Basic Multivitamin ( remember not all multivitamins are made the same there is a big difference in the absorption rate of zinc oxide compared to zinc amino acid chelate for example.) A multivitamin is important to assist a diet that may be lacking in certain vitamins and minerals especially B vitamins, biotin, folic acid and silica can improve scalp and hair quality.
- Fish Oil, fish oil is beneficial for dandruff sufferers but you usually wont notice much of a difference unless you take quite a high dosage. popular dry scalp treatment.
- Supplements to improve circulation , supplements that increase circulation are very important because without good circulation all these vitamins and minerals you are taking will not reach the hair. Some commonly used supplements for circulation are gingko/ginko biloba , and amino acid supplements such as l-arginine.
- Amino Acids , amino acids are the building blocks of protein and what's hair made of .... protein bingo:) , amino acids are found in almost everything we eat that can be killed or grown and are vital to overall health and supplementing with certain amino acids can help dandruff significantly, most commonly taken are l-methionine and l-cysteine
Its the end of the hub as we know it
Well done if you've reached the end its a bit of a long read for someone who is midly concerned about there scalp but for people truly worried and annoyed by there dandruff i'm sure you made it to the end and I hope it helped you out, Goodluck to everyone fighting dandruff and i'm sure I probably left out something about dandruff which is important but i hope not, anyway if you have any questions don't be afraid to contact me
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