This guide from Green People UK helps you to understand what causes an itchy scalp and provides advice on how to soothe problem scalps. We look at the reasons why your scalp is flaky or itchy, and give some tips on how best to get rid of flaking, dandruff and itchiness.
What causes an itchy scalp?
One of the most common causes of an itchy scalp is harsh foaming agents, particularly the detergent Sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS), used in many high street shampoos.
SLS is what gives these shampoos their foaminess, but it is a known skin and scalp irritant.
If SLS is the cause of your problem, simply avoiding all the products with this ingredient will make a huge difference to your itchy scalp. We do not use SLS in any of our products. Read more about our SLS-free shampoos.
Which scalp problems can cause itchiness?
SLS isn’t the only thing that can cause an itchy scalp. Skin conditions such as seborrhoeic eczema and scalp psoriasis also cause itchiness and flaking. Seborrhoeic eczema produces greasier, yellowy flakes, whilst scalp psoriasis is characterised by red patches with silver scales.
Flaking occurs when the scalp loses more dead skin cells than usual and they aren't removed when you brush or wash your hair.
If you have flakiness without the itching, the chances are you probably have dandruff which is most common in people with oily hair. Dandruff is a common and very visible condition, made worse when your scalp isn't properly moisturised.
Most high street brands of chemical-based anti-dandruff shampoos may clear away dead skin cells but they won't equalise your scalp's moisture and the harsh ingredients may irritate your scalp, causing your skin to flake and itch even more.
Natural shampoos for an itchy scalp
Our natural shampoos are just the thing for an itchy scalp. Made without SLS, artificial fragrances and other harsh chemicals, they contain organic essential oils and pure plant extracts to promote glossy hair and a healthy scalp.
If you have oily hair and a problematic scalp:
Try our Irritated Scalp Shampoo and Conditioner. Stimulating Rosemary essential oil and Pineapple enzyme help to cleanse the scalp thoroughly to relieve itchiness, whilst leaving hair naturally glossy.
If your hair is normal or dry and your scalp is very itchy:
Try our Itch Away Shampoo. It contains Tea Tree, which is strongly antibacterial and antiseptic to control microbes linked to dandruff, and Pineapple enzymes which help to remove excess dead skin cells and rebalance a flaky scalp. It can be combined with any of our organic conditioners.
If your scalp is very sensitive to fragrances and essential oils:
Try Neutral/Scent Free Shampoo and Conditioner. Made with ultra-gentle ingredients, this sensitive hair care duo leaves hair soft and silky.
What can I do to help a flaky or itchy scalp?
There are many things you can do to make a difference to an itchy, flaky scalp.
- Avoid chemical-based shampoos and wash thoroughly using one of our natural shampoos for itchy scalp. Ours do not contain SLS and are full of natural ingredients to cleanse and nourish your scalp and hair.
- Gently massage your scalp when you shampoo your hair – but don’t scratch. This will help to loosen flakes without leaving your scalp damaged or irritated
- If you have a flaky, greasy scalp you may also like to massage your scalp with Jojoba oil at least 30 minutes before shampooing. This calms the sebaceous glands in your scalp which release too much sebum to cause the greasiness
- Tea Tree and Manuka can also be helpful in reducing the bacteria which cause dandruff. Washing your hair with a natural anti-dandruff shampoo which contains these plant based ingredients should help
- Avoid using styling products wherever possible, as these may cause build-up and itching
- Have a healthy diet and drink plenty of water. Increase your Omega-3&6 intake – but remember to keep it balanced
- Visit your doctor if you aren't having any success with these suggestions
Have you got a question about natural hair care for an itchy scalp?
Our friendly UK customer care team is happy to help with any questions you may have about choosing hair care for an itchy scalp.
Please chat to us on social media @GreenPeopleUK or call us on 01403 740350.