If you suffer from an irritated scalp or notice that you have dandruff (white flakes) more often than not, there are a number of things that could be contributing to these common issues – from dry skin to the type of shampoo and conditioner you’re using to wash your hair with. Other common skin conditions such as dermatitis and eczema can also contribute to scalp irritation. In cases where scalp irritation becomes severe, you may need to be prescribed an ointment in order to get relief as well as possibly be referred to a dermatologist for further evaluation. However, there are also some natural remedies that you can try at home.
1. GREEN TEA
Green tea already has plenty of health benefits. It’s rich in antioxidants, which can help to decrease the risk of certain types of cancer (such as breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colorectal cancer), can improve brain function and lower your risk of Alzhaimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, can kill bacteria and lower your risk of infection, and can also help you lose weight and lower your risk of obesity. Research has also shown the antioxidants found in green tea can help fight common skin disorders and reduce dandruff by reducing the overproduction of cells caused by inflammation. While you can drink tea to reap these benefits, you can also give your scalp some relief by massaging two cool green tea bags onto your scalp and rinse it off after a few hours.
2. APPLE CIDER VINEGAR
Apple cider vinegar is something people commonly drink to find relief or prevent a wide variety of ailments, including high blood sugar, diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, digestive problems, and certain types of cancer. As for how it can benefit the scalp, you can swap out your shampoo and wash your hair with a small amount of apple cider vinegar diluted with water. It works by balancing out the pH level of your scalp, and you should notice a decrease in dandruff as a result.
While commonly used for cooking, thyme can also benefit the scalp due to its antiseptic properties, which are known to ease dandruff. Simply boil approximately 2 tablespoons of dried thyme in 2 cups of water for about 10 minutes. Once you have done this, strain it and allow it to cool. Once cool enough, massage it into your scalp (making sure your hair and scalp are both damp) and let sit for 20 to 30 minutes before rinsing it off.
4. COCONUT OIL
Coconut oil is something that has become increasingly popular due to how it can benefit the skin, and that includes the scalp. It has both antifungal and antibacterial properties and can treat a dry scalp or a scalp that is affected by atopic dermatitis. Simply massage a small amount of coconut oil into your scalp and let it sit for approximately 10 minutes. Following this, you can wash your hair as you normally would. Your scalp will not only feel better, but you may even notice that your hair feels smoother as a result of using coconut oil.
5. TEA TREE OIL
Tea tree oil, which is an essential oil that is derived from the Australian tea tree known as melaleuca alternifolia, can also provide relieving effects to the scalp, especially from things like dandruff and psoriasis of the scalp due to its anti-inflammatory properties. If tea tree oil is something new that you’re going to be introducing your scalp to, it’s recommended that you first do a patch test on your skin just to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction (signs of an allergic reaction would include things like redness, increased irritation, burning, etc.) If after 24 hours you don’t develop a reaction, it should be safe to use. It’s also important to note that you should always dilute tea tree oil before applying it to your scalp by mixing it with a carrier oil, like coconut oil, or aloe vera. Tea tree oil can also be added to your regular shampoo, or you can find a shampoo to purchase with tea tree oil as an ingredient.