Have you ever combed your hair and noticed flakes falling from your hair? Or looked down at your shoulder to see small white flakes on it? You may be dealing with dandruff or a dry scalp. So, how can we tell the difference between dry scalp and dandruff? Although the terms are used interchangeably, they have some key differences. Here's the thing: treating dry scalp and dandruff may not be as simple as you might imagine. This is why you need an expert-approved remedy to help you achieve a healthy, flake-free scalp. Stop the itching and the undue embarrassment it may cause today. Let's get started!
What Causes Dry Scalp and Dandruff?
For a better chance to treat your scalp condition, it is important to differentiate the symptoms and underlying causes of dandruff and dry scalp. Before getting into the nitty-gritty of both conditions, the first thing to know is that the major difference between the two is that a dry scalp is caused by dehydrated skin, but dandruff is a medical issue.
Dandruff causes White or Yellow flakes that accumulate on the scalp and can cause redness, dryness and itching. The excessive shedding of dead skin cells causes these flakes. While shedding dead skin cells is normal and happens regularly, certain factors can cause this process to go into overdrive. The most prevalent cause is an overabundance of the Malassezia fungus, which grows naturally. This fungus causes an increased rate of cell turnover by feeding on the natural oils that our hair follicles produce. Factors such as hormonal imbalances, allergies, stress, sensitive skin types, co-occurring conditions such as dermatitis, eczema and psoriasis and even harsh hair products can also be some of the causes of dandruff in hair.
In contrast, a dry scalp is primarily marked by a dry and tight sensation on the scalp, accompanied by a flaky scalp with small, White flakes that are often less oily than dandruff. You may also notice hair damage and breakage. Think of a dry scalp as having dry skin on other parts of your body, like your elbows or knees. The simplest reason for this dryness is that the top layer of the skin doesn’t have enough internal hydration and natural oils. Some dry scalp causes include cold weather, low humidity, over-washing hair with hot water or using aggressive hair products that strip away natural oils. Furthermore, several skin diseases, such as psoriasis or eczema, can significantly aggravate the symptoms of a dry scalp.
How to Treat Dandruff & Dry Scalp
Now that you’re familiar with what causes dandruff in hair and a dry scalp, finding the right remedy for itchy scalps is crucial in alleviating discomfort and restoring a healthy balance to your scalp. Luckily, several options have been known to bring relief to those suffering from these conditions.
Most times, the symptoms of dry scalp and dandruff can be controlled without too much of a hassle. Before looking at other options, you should first consider switching your hair care products to gentler, sulfate free products that are more soothing to the scalp.
Harsh hair care products or those unsuitable for your hair type can exacerbate the symptoms of both conditions. The iluvia Pro Maintenance System is designed with a mild, gentle, pH-balanced formula to reduce hair and scalp dryness, protecting them from further damage and strengthening them.
First, wet your hair and apply the Sulfate Free Shampoo. Apply the shampoo to your scalp by massaging it, making sure to spread it evenly from root to tip. The shampoo has been developed using micro-emulsion technology to offer a mild yet efficient cleansing experience without depleting the natural oils of the hair and scalp. In addition to reducing frizz and dryness, it protects the natural lipid barrier and maintains the appropriate oil balance, leaving hair feeling soft, luxurious and supple. It helps with hair repair by maintaining and shielding dry, frizzy and damaged hair from more harm. This is why it is regarded as one of the best shampoos for dry scalp and dandruff.
Apply the Hair Repair Mask to your hair and let it sit for five minutes after washing away the shampoo. The hair mask’s hydrophobic and moisture-repellent ingredients will help you achieve a healthy scalp. The recipe, inspired by nature, keeps water from adversely impacting hair's protein and fibre structure. Dry, frizzy hair that is brittle results from the weakening and structural swelling of hair fibre caused by water absorption. The Hair Repair Mask keeps the hair and scalp healthy while repairing damage and shielding them from dryness. It aids in preserving the hair's lipid barrier when used in conjunction with the Sulfate Free Shampoo. Additionally, it gives the hair a suppleness that lasts.
If you use heat styling tools regularly, they may be affecting your scalp health. High temperatures evaporate the natural moisture in your skin and hair, making them dry and dehydrated. If your scalp is already dry or has dandruff, it will only worsen with heat damage. Enter the Hair Protection Serum. Apply a small amount of the serum using your palms, working your way from the mid-lengths of your hair to the ends. Once this serum is massaged into your hair, it will protect it from environmental factors, including moisture, pollution and UV rays, as well as heat damage from styling equipment. The hair serum prevents dryness and frizz while fortifying your hair against heat damage. It has Pure Argan Oil and Olive Squalene Oil, which are good for you. Argan Oil softens and smoothens the hair and reduces breakage. Olive Qqualene Oil derived from plants nourishes individual hair strands and preserves their natural gloss.
If you have severe dandruff, you may need medical intervention in the form of anti-dandruff shampoos. Using these shampoos consistently can help reduce flakes and alleviate itchy and flaky scalp symptoms.
Another approach is to incorporate natural remedies into your hair care routine. Due to its antifungal qualities, tea tree oil can be rubbed into the scalp or mixed with your usual shampoo and carrier oil. Additionally, aloe vera gel, with its soothing qualities, can provide relief from dryness and irritation.
Another effective treatment option for both dandruff and dry scalp is adjusting your hair-washing routine. Dryness or irritation can result from over-shampooing with hot water, which removes the natural oils from your scalp. Opt for lukewarm water and consider washing your hair every other day instead of daily. Doing this lets you keep your scalp's natural oils and moisture balance.
In some cases, dietary changes can also play a role in managing dandruff and dry scalp. As nuts and seeds are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have anti-inflammatory qualities that may help lessen scalp irritation, adding these types of foods to your diet may help. Including foods like kombucha and kefir, which contain probiotics, can also aid in rebalancing the scalp's natural microbiome.
It's important to note that not all remedies work equally for everyone. What may bring relief to one person's scalp may not work for another. It is strongly advised to see a dermatologist if nonprescription medications or alterations to your lifestyle are ineffective in relieving your symptoms. They can offer tailored guidance and recommend topical treatments, oral medications or prescription-strength shampoos to address the underlying reasons for dandruff and dry scalp.