Are you suffering from dandruff?
Dandruff is a skin condition that targets the scalp and is characterized by white flaking and itchiness. While most people do experience at least some dandruff throughout their life, it can still be a humiliating experience regardless.
When left untreated, dandruff can lead to issues such as scalp acne and irritation. And, more severe cases can lead to inflammation of the skin resulting in pain and tenderness to the scalp.
While there is no scientific cure, there are products designed to combat dandruff. However, most of these products contain harmful chemicals that can actually damage the scalp further. Fortunately, there are effective home remedies that provide relief for dandruff and lessen the development.
If you’ve found yourself wondering how to get rid of dandruff, you’re going to want to keep reading. Let’s outline the 10 best natural remedies for eliminating dandruff.
What Causes Dandruff?
First and foremost, in order to target and eliminate dandruff, we need to know what exactly causes it.
Dandruff can be caused by dry skin, improper nutrition, overwashing, inadequate hydration and overexposure to hair products. However, the primary cause of dandruff is malassezia which is a yeast-like fungus that attacks the oils from hair follicles.
Now that we understand what causes dandruff, we can better determine the different types of home remedies that can help combat the problem. With this, we are looking for remedies that contain hydrating properties to target dryness. We are also looking for remedies that contain natural anti-virals and antifungals to fight against the fungus that leads to dandruff.
1. Coconut Oil and Lemon
Coconut oil has been happily basking in the spotlight in recent years and we can certainly understand why.
Not only does coconut oil provide for natural hydration, but it also contains antiviral, antimicrobial and antifungal properties. These properties are exactly what makes coconut oil such an effective remedy for dandruff. They help to target and kill any fungus or bacteria that may exist.
The lemon also helps to treat dandruff and without the harsh chemicals that most other acidic products contain.
Combine two tablespoons of coconut oil with 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice. Massage your scalp with the mixture and leave to work it’s magic for 20 minutes. After the necessary time, rinse and wash.
Be patient with this one as it’s a work in progress. Results, though very effective, may take up to a week to show.
2. Baking Soda
Surprise, surprise -baking soda is an extremely effective home remedy for treating dandruff. And, this one just might be the most simple of all.
Put simply, baking soda helps to reduce overactive fungi that can cause dandruff.
With wet hair, simply add a tablespoon of baking soda to your scalp and vigorously massage. After 1-2 minutes, rinse the baking soda from the scalp. Skip the shampoo.
At first, you might notice that the baking soda dries out your skin. However, after a few weeks, your scalp will begin to produce natural oils that rid of the flakes and leads to more soft and healthy hair.
3. Course Salt
The abrasiveness of course salt works wonders for scrubbing out dandruff flakes prior to washing. Take a teaspoon of course salt (think sea salt or kosher salt) and apply to your dry scalp. Slowly work the salt through your hair in a circular motion.
This helps to work out the flakes and prepare your hair to be properly washed without the flakes.
It’s safe for daily use and is most effective when paired with a hydrating dandruff remedy such as olive oil or coconut oil.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar
If you’re not familiar with apple cider vinegar, it’s certainly a product worth adding to your grocery list.
Aside from its many other nutritional benefits, apple cider vinegar is known to provide itch relief and reduce irritation. This is what makes it one of the best home remedies for eliminating dandruff.
To make this at home, mix equal parts apple cider vinegar and water. For a single use, half a cup of each product should do the trick. After a regular wash, apply the mixture all over the scalp and throughout the hair.
For the first few minutes, massage the mixture into your scalp. Allow it to sit for 15 minutes before rinsing off with warm water.
This is a safe routine to use daily and you should begin to notice results after 5-7 days. If you notice any irritation, continue to use only every other day. If irritation persists, be sure to discontinue use and opt for a different home remedy.
5. Neem Leaves and Juice
What exactly is “neem”?
Neem is an ancient plant in which the extracted juice and the leaves provide bountiful health benefits. While it may be less known in North America, neem juice has played a vital role in traditional Indian medicine for years.
It’s known for its significant and extremely variable healing properties. And, it just so happens that neem juice is extremely powerful in eliminating dandruff.
Neem leaves can be used to treat many skin and hair issues. The leaves contain blood purifying and antimicrobial properties. These properties help to eliminate the development of dandruff and also provide anti-inflammatory benefits.
The neem home remedy can be used in two different ways:
1. Neem Leaves -According to experts, the easiest way to eliminate dandruff is to actually chew the neem leaves every morning. However, the leaves can be very bitter.
2. Neem Juice -This may be the easier option for those that are unable to grow or locate the neem plant. Simply drink half a cup of the neem juice each morning and watch your hair and skin hydrate and replenish!
While neem juice can prove challenging to find, it is often stocked in health food stores or can be purchased online. Or, for those with a green thumb, neem plants can even be grown at home with proper temperatures.
6. White Vinegar
White vinegar contains many natural properties that to rid the fungus that causes dandruff.
The acetic acid contained in vinegar works to kill the bacteria and fungus on the scalp that leads to dandruff. It also lessens the growth of bacteria and yeast and removes dead skin cells from the scalp.
The acidity of the vinegar also helps to eliminate the itchiness of the scalp. Without the need to continually itch the scalp, fewer flakes will naturally appear.
With your eyes closed, pour a sufficient (think 1-2 teaspoons) amount of white vinegar onto dry hair and massage into your scalp. You can also add a few drops of tea tree oil to make this remedy more effective.
Let it dry for a few minutes and then rinse and wash your hair normally. You may need to spend extra time rinsing your hair to eliminate the smell of the vinegar.
Continue to repeat this vinegar wash daily until you notice the dandruff is gone.
7. Olive Oil
The very olive oil currently in your kitchen pantry can work wonders for temporarily removing dandruff.
While olive oil is mostly used for cooking, it also serves as a moisturizer to both hair and skin. It’s known for nourishing deep layers or skin and holding the moisture in -sometimes even more effectively than conventional moisturizing lotions.
This is due to the natural fatty acids contained in the oil, as well as the plethora of vitamins such as A, D, K and E.
For removal of dandruff specifically, it’s best to use unrefined organic olive oil. However, conventional olive oil will also work. Simply pour about a teaspoon on the front of your scalp as well as the back of your scalp.
Massage the olive oil into your scalp and allow to sit for up to an hour.
To finish, use a comb to brush the olive oil through the hair. If you find that your hair is too oily, you can use shampoo to wash it and remove the excess oil. This is best practiced at night as the oil will mostly be absorbed by the morning and your hair will look refreshed as opposed to greasy.
8. Essential Oil Drink
A wide variety of essential oils are praised for their hydrating and nourishing effects. This allows them the ability to rid of dandruff and provide extra hydration to the scalp.
This remedy is most effective when containing the following essential oils:
- Tea tree oil
Be sure to include lemongrass oil. This oil is one of the most effective oils in eliminating dandruff. In fact, in a study conducted with all participants reporting dandruff, they stated the lemongrass significantly reduced their dandruff after 7 days of daily use.
Because this “drink” is consumed, be sure to only use essential oils that are labeled as 100% pure. Otherwise, you may be consuming harsh chemicals that will have an adverse effect on your health.
Combine two drops of each oil into six ounces of water and consume.
9. Omega 3s
Sometimes all it can take is getting the proper nutrition into your diet.
If you find yourself struggling with extreme instances of dandruff, consider what your daily nutrition patterns look like. If you feel that you may be lacking in certain vitamins, considering a change in diet.
Adding Omega 3 foods to your diet are proven to add necessary hydration to your skin from within. This, in turn, may help to reduce dandruff caused by dryness. Omega 3s also contain vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that help to better one’s health and skin overall.
If you’re considering adding more Omega 3s to your diet, look to wild-caught salmon, chia seeds, walnuts or even fish oil capsoles.
Or, be sure to check out a selection of healthy recipes that can help to add a little fun and creativity into your nutrition plan!
10. Rosemary Hair Mask
Essential oils are incredibly effective in controlling dandruff due to their antibacterial properties.
This anti-dandruff hair mask combines the following essential oils:
- Cedarwood oil
- Rosemary oil
- Tea tree oil
- Olive oil
These oils help to combat bacteria that may cause dandruff to develop.
To create this mask, blend 8 drops of cedarwood oil, 8 drops of rosemary oil, 6 drops of tea tree oil and 4 drops of oil olive into a small container. Next, add a tablespoon of honey and coconut oil to a good mixture and blend it. Massage this oil onto a dry scalp and leave on for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, wash regularly.
For severe cases, the mixture can be left on the scalp overnight when used with a shower cap. The product can also be prepared in advance and stored in a container for up to 10 days.
How to Get Rid of Dandruff The Natural Way
There’s no denying that having dandruff can be a humiliating experience.
But remember that dandruff is something that can happen to anyone. In fact, studies reveal that instances of dandruff affect nearly half of the population. Fortunately, there are many home remedies that can help to reduce the presence of dandruff.
Luckily, most of these home remedies you may already have at home in your pantry. Better yet, these products contain natural ingredients that will not pose a threat to your health and many other conventional products would.
If you’re wondering how to get rid of dandruff, consider trying a few of these natural remedies and see which remedy works best for you. And, if you’re interested in reading more articles that focus on your health, nutrition, and natural remedies, be sure to check out our blog.