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No one likes an itchy scalp, but for some, this inconvenience can become embarrassing and painful. There’s no shortage of dandruff shampoos, but if you’re looking for a more natural option, then give these natural treatments for dandruff a go. They’ll help soothe an itchy, flaky scalp, without just masking symptoms.
Hormone imbalances, autoimmune diseases, and an overgrowth of the fungus malassezia on the scalp can all cause dandruff. You can read more about treating the root cause of dandruff here. With so many different causes, treating dandruff will look different for different people. A natural dandruff remedy that works for one person, may not work for you. And while you may be making long term health changes to take care of dandruff, in the meantime you need some skincare goodness that will soothe and get rid of it fast.1
Below are our 6 favorite natural dandruff treatments!
You can clean with it, drink it for your health, and of course, it’s great for your scalp. Raw apple cider vinegar is antimicrobrial, so it can help control the fungal overgrowth that can cause dandruff. It also has an acidic pH, so instead of wreaking havoc on your scalp’s pH it actually works with your scalp’s natural acidic pH. If you’re looking for a pH balanced, moisturizing shampoo recipe, then check out our moisturizing pH balanced shampoo recipe here.
To use: Combine 1 cup of apple cider vinegar with 1 cup of water and use it to rinse the scalp. Massage it through with your fingers, and don’t rinse it out. Your hair will smell like vinegar until it dries. Also, you can try some of this nettle and vinegar hair rinse for even more hair benefits.
Full of a variety of vitamins and minerals, raw organic honey is also used on burns because of it’s amazing skin renewal properties. It’s a humectant, so hair holds onto moisture longer. It’s also antimicrobrial, making it great for dandruff. In this study, participants who used raw honey for their dandruff were able to eliminate it completely…and for good!
To use: Mix 6 T. raw honey with 2 T. filtered water and massage it into the scalp for a few minutes. Leave it on for a few hours before rinsing it out. Do this for every other day for 2 weeks, then once a week for maintenance.
A common home remedy for dandruff is to crush some aspirin tablets and rub them on your head. The active ingredient in aspirin is salicylic acid, which is actually derived from the white willow tree. Skip the aspirin and go straight to the source by using a white willow bark decoction.
To use: Gently simmer ¼ cup of white willow bark in 2 cups of water. Strain and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature before pouring over the scalp. Since white willow bark doesn’t smell the best, you can steep a few tsps. or bags of peppermint tea into the decoction before using the rinse. (PS Learn more about decoctions, infusions, and fomentations here).
Seriously, what is coconut oil not good for!?? This treatment can help soothe an irritated scalp, and it’s antimicrobrial benefits fight the fungal overgrowth that can cause dandruff. It’s super simple to use, too.
To use: Massage a generous amount of organic, virgin, hand-pressed coconut oil into the scalp, wrap it in a towel or shower cap, and wait an hour. Shampoo as usual to get rid of the excess oil and open the hair follicles.
Yet another nutritious food that you can use for a topical dandruff treatment. Sea salt helps to exfoliate the scalp, getting rid of the excess buildup of flakes. The trace minerals from the sea salt are also nourishing. You’ll want to use a super finely ground salt for this and make sure that you’re using a true, unrefined sea salt, like this or this one, and avoid anything that’s snowy white and processed.
To use: Mix 3 T. sea salt with enough raw honey, coconut oil, or aloe vera to make a paste. You want it thick enough to scoop with your fingers and work with. Use this paste to gently exfoliate the scalp, then rinse with warm water.
Organic tea tree essential oil is a powerful anti-fungal that can really put a dent in dandruff. Since it’s an essential oil, it’s highly concentrated and shouldn’t be used undiluted over the whole scalp. Also, since oil and water don’t mix, it can’t be diluted in water.