The cold, dry air is coming and it’s bringing super dry skin all around. It’s no Santa Claus. It’s not a fun time.
Warning: There are some gnarly photos in this one.
Welcome to winter… or Autumn, I guess, for now. The air is dry. Your eyes are dry. Your nose is dry. Your hands are dry and so is your scalp. You’ve noticed dry, white flakes sprinkling your hair just above your scalp rightttt before a first date. Is it dandruff?
Likely not. Dandruff is a fungal infection of the scalp that’s actually pretty rare to get. It’s a bit greasy, yellow, it smells, and has larger flakes. Unless it looks like this (sorry in advance), it’s probably the more common dry scalp:
If you do have dandruff, you can cure the infection with garlic, preferably garlic drops like these (do not put crushed raw garlic on your skin… especially sensitive areas like your scalp. It will sting and burn your skin, leaving red rashes and bubbling… It is TOO strong!). You can also use oregano essential oil with a carrier oil. If you want to risk coconut or olive oil, be wary that you’ll need to wash that out or risk oily hair for around 2 weeks. Otherwise, I recommend using shea or coconut butter as a carrier. Unless Head & Shoulders is guaranteed anti-fungal, don’t waste your time.
If your scalp is a bit flaky, with white flakes that looks like dead, dry skin, that’s dry scalp. Dry scalp is super common. It happens to everyone, even cats… It’s also ridiculously easy to cure.
Common symptoms of dry scalp include flaking and itching. That’s perfectly normal. If your hands are dry and flaky, it makes sense that your scalp is flaky, too. You can avoid dry scalp just like you can avoid dry hands in the winter, by covering it up! Wear a warm hat if it’s cold. Prevention isn’t exactly key, though. Dry scalp can occur randomly. Try to avoid taking super hot showers, especially without doing a James Bond shower (following with cold water to close pores).
Try these remedies to cure dry scalp:
1 – Raw Honey: Raw honey is not just great for your face, but it’s also awesome for your hair and scalp. It softens the skin (and hair), hydrates it, and it’s a prebiotic. This takes a bit to wash out, but if you mix it with a vinegar/aloe, it’s not as difficult to wash out. Get some at your local health food store, from your local beekeeper, or online. Make sure it is raw and unfiltered. Otherwise it won’t work the way it should. Also, highly recommend the local beekeeper. 😉
2 – Aloe Vera: Aloe is one of my favorite ways to cure dry scalp. You can buy aloe vera gel or juice at any health food store or online. You can also purchase an aloe plant and keep it alive in your home so that you always have fresh aloe on hand. Idiotically, I completely forgot I had my own aloe plant and was planning on buying some juice! Fresh aloe is definitely best. You can cut the aloe off the plant and open the leaf. Rub the inside of the aloe vera leaf on your scalp after soaking it in water in the shower or bath. This should provide instant itchiness relief and cure the scalp as quickly as a day later. It’s still wise to continue to apply the aloe to your scalp as a preventative. Get some aloe vera gel here. You can also find some at your local health food store. Warning: It’s not cheap! Stick with the plant if you can.
3 – Apple Cider Vinegar: Some people (like me) use apple cider vinegar or white vinegar as a rinse normally in the shower. This can also prevent dry scalp. I prefer white vinegar for my hair type, but ACV is much more common. Feel free to mix ACV with raw honey, aloe, or anything else mentioned. This should treat the itchiness as well! Get it at a grocery store or purchase online here.
4 – Shea Butter: In the winter, shea butter is my life saver. I use it for chapstick, dry hands, and even on my face as a moisturizer. It’s the best thing ever. One $10 tub of shea butter has lasted me 2 years of regular use in the winter, so it’s also super affordable. You can find it at your local co-op or purchase online here.
5 – Rose Water: It’s common for people all over the world to spray rose water on their face as a refreshing, nicely scented wake up, but rose water is also great for your skin. Rose water has anti-inflammatory properties that may prevent dry scalp, so it’s awesome as a preventative. It also feels amazing and should relieve itching immediately. You can easily make rose water on your own by purchasing dry rose petals (health food store, bulk herb store, asian supermarket) and run boiling water over. Otherwise you can find some pre-made rose water here.
Thanks for reading! Let me know if any of these worked for you in the comments!
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Photo by Lukas Martynas Janosek on Unsplash