View Full Version : Dry Scalp

September 25th, 2008, 07:41 PM
My scalp is acting really weird!

After doing a search for "dry scalp" and browsing through 6 pages of results I read through a dandruff thread and I'm still confuzzled.

My routine:

CV poo bar (olive & babassu) 3x lather
white vinegar rinse with a squirt of whatever condish I have on hand
rinse with fresh water
giovanni direct leave-in
5+ drops coconut oil
squirt of avg (not all the time)

I generally wash every 2-3 days, but these flakes make it hard to go more than 1 (the amount that collect in my hair is too disturbing!)

My scalp has done this only a couple times before and I found myself waging an epic battle with various treatments (head & shoulders, oils, scritching, scrubs, etc) only to be beaten down with the hugest flakes I've ever had in my life showing up in my hair at work (ewww). It finally settled down after some continued H&S use.

But looking at my scalp, it looks like really dry skin. Anywhere I part my hair I see my white scalp with tiny flakes stuck to my skin. If I scratch lightly, the flakes come away from the skin........just like scratching a dry patch on your leg or something.

I oiled & massaged last night with Moonchaser's massage oil.

My head is itchy. The flakes are teeny-weeny. I have to wash my hair to get them out, brushing doesn't help.

Any thoughts? Any ideas that I haven't tried? I've thought of rubbing my face moisturizer into my scalp!

September 25th, 2008, 08:09 PM
EVOO works really good, DH has flaky dry skin on the scalp and the EVOO keeps it at bay for almost 2 weeks.

September 25th, 2008, 08:20 PM
My husband use to think he had a really dry scalp, but it's seboric dermatitis--I know I misspelled that. Meh. He's been dealing with it for over 15 years. The best things he's found so far are tea tree oil, Aubrey's Lavender and Primrose Conditioner.

There have been lotions from the derm--mostly steroids, which are nasty IMHO--but they only work when you use them twice a day. Problem is, you can only use them a week on a week off, so your poor scalp is only happy half the time.

Also, he's taking an omega oil combo from Whole Foods that has fish, borage, and flax oil. That seems to be helping, too!

Good luck.

September 25th, 2008, 09:25 PM
Have you tried either Nizoral shampoo, or Monistat cream? These both contain an antifungal; one current theory for the cause of many cases of dandruff/seborrheic dermatitis is irritation from the overgrowth of yeast that normally inhabit the scalp. If you read the Monistat thread, you'll see that many people have found problems with an itchy or scaly scalp have cleared up when they were trying out the Monistat to increase their growth rate.

September 26th, 2008, 03:16 AM
hm, it does sound stubborn. I'm going with the theory that it is some kind of imbalance or irritation, too...my scalp tends towards flakiness and itchiness and I've been diagnosed with sebhorreic dermatitis and eczema in the past. So I will try to help. I think the line between dry and oily is a very, very fine one, at least in my case, maybe it's the same with your stubborn dandruff?

You said ' Anywhere I part my hair I see my white scalp with tiny flakes stuck to my skin. If I scratch lightly, the flakes come away from the skin........just like scratching a dry patch on your leg or something.' which applies to mine, too, so I will tell you what I think.

When I read your routine I immediately noticed several things:

1) you are doing a LOT of stuff to your hair, and;
2) you are using a shampoo bar (basic), as well as vinegar (acidic) *every* wash, which for me is a red flag.
3) something else could be going on (diet, stress, hormones...?)

Following 1), could you be overmoisturizing your scalp, causing buildup or making it dry out? I see lots of different oils, leave-ins, 'avg' which I don't know...seems a bit like overkill. :)

2) maybe your hair isn't getting clean with 'just' a shampoo bar? Aren't shampoo bars mild soap? For me, CO and WO both left me with more flakes and itching like you describe, and so did 'cones. Do you ever clarify or wash with a sulfate shampoo? What about doing vinegar rinses on their own, without shampooing or doing anything other than perhaps oiling?

3) What's your diet like? Do you eat a lot of sugar, or drink a lot of caffeine, sugary beverages (yes this includes juice), processed flour? Do you drink enough water? Are you under stress that could be causing your body and systems to be out of whack?

This isn't comprehensive of course but it's what popped out at me. I know how frustrating a sensitive, itchy scalp is, and for me it is CRUCIAL to touch it as little as possible. Scalp massages, scritching, even brushing if it's not before a wash...all are out, unless I want flakes.

hope you are finding something here that works for you and good luck in the battle against flakes!


September 26th, 2008, 07:16 AM
Hmm.. this sounds like it might be a bigger problem than my solution but basically when my scalp gets dry I massage a generous amount of jojoba oil on damp hair and scalp. I leave it on overnight and then wash the next day.

It always helps and my flakes go away for a few weeks.

One other thing that I've heard is helpful is to oil your scalp with EVOO or Jojoba then do a brown sugar scalp scrub (brown sugar not dissolved mixed with conditioner).

I hope your condition gets better! :flower:

September 26th, 2008, 08:15 AM
Eva, your post reminded me of something else:


We don't have much brown sugar here (beet vs. cane sugar) but I have used crystallized honey as a scalp scrub. Honey really calms down my scalp itchies, used as a wash, a deep treatment, or as part of an SMT. My scalp always benefits from a honey wash.

September 26th, 2008, 10:41 AM
Ack you described my scalp!
How do I figure out if its irritated (as in I need to change products or rinse better), dry (need to moisturize), fungal (need to apply some sort of anti-fungal), etc... Do I need to wash more often or less (I wash 2x a week).
This is really driving me crazy.

For the record, my diet is horrible and consists of lots of sugar, caffeine, sodium, and processed foods in general. I have a fair amount of stress and am always tired (even though I get adequate sleep).

It snows when I touch my hair :(

September 26th, 2008, 10:46 AM
According to my mother, and a few other people who have had dry scalp and flakiness issues, olive oil is the best for the scalp. Maybe continuing to use H&S, and massaging your scalp with olive oil on your fingertips?

September 26th, 2008, 10:51 AM
I alternate between Giovanni Tea Trea Triple treat shampoo and my shampoo bar, and wash my hair 2-3 times a week. But i always use the giovanni TTTT conditioner. i also use grapseed oil with rosemary, lavender, and other essential oils.

September 27th, 2008, 02:32 AM
Maybe asprin in conditioner as a CO?
Other alternative may be Ionil shampoo, it has salysilic (spelling?) in it and will help to clear the scalp.