Hair

The truth about dandruff and how to treat it

Hair

The truth about dandruff and how to treat it

Half of us experience dandruff
Look around the room at your besties right now. Fifty percent of them have dandruff (according to stats). And we’re not simply talking about telltale flakes. Signs of this condition also include itching, dryness and irritated scalp.

So, why does it happen?
According to Dr. Rolanda Johnson-Wilkerson, P&G Beauty’s principal scientist, all of us have a fungus called Malassezia on our scalps (#ew). It eats our natural scalp oils, multiplies and produces a by-product that goes onto the head. When that happens, the skin freaks out and tries to defend itself by producing more skin cells. On some people these will stick on the scalp rather than shedding, hence the buildup we see as flaking. Flakes from product buildup is different than flakes from dandruff. (But the good thing is, a dandruff shampoo can cleanse your hair from product buildup.)

How do you treat it?
Well, you need products with active ingredients, of course. (See our slideshow below). Good products won't just get rid of flakes, they nurture a healthy scalp. And a healthy scalp = healthy hair. When you scratch your scalp, you’re pulling on the hair cuticle all the way into the root. This can allow moisture to flow in and out of the follicle, exposing hair that’s not even on the scalp yet to breakage, says Johnson-Wilkerson.

But wait, I've coloured my hair since forever. Is dandruff shampoo safe to use on it?
Johnson-Wilkerson says yes. "We’ve tested [our products] against some of the most gentlest shampoos, baby shampoos, and they’ve shown that there is no difference in colour fade in the hair. Colour change happens in hair because of the metals that are naturally found in water like copper."
 

Slideshow

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9 products to help your dandruff

Head & Shoulders Instant Cooling Relief Shampoo and Conditioner

Head & Shoulders Instant Cooling Relief Shampoo and Conditioner ($5 each), at drug stores and mass-market retailers.   READ MORE: This might be the coolest hair from Paris Fashion Week

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Head & Shoulders Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Exfoliating scalp facial

Alterna haircare caviar clinical exfoliating scalp facial ($45), at sephora.com.   READ MORE: 8 hacks that will change your brow game

By: Carli Whitwell Source: sephora.com Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Scalp treatment

Lush Superbalm Scalp Treatment ($22), at lush.ca.   READ MORE: Kylie Jenner demonstrates her trick to faking full lips

By: Carli Whitwell Source: lush.ca Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Anti-aging scalp serum

Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare ‘Root Resilience’ Anti-Aging Scalp Serum ($75), at nordstrom.com.   READ MORE: The liberating power of a statement haircut

By: Carli Whitwell Source: nordstrom.com Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Scalp shampoo

Sachajuan scalp shampoo ($33 USD), at net-a-porter.com. READ MORE: Everything you need to know about the new line of products from the Kardashian’s hairstylist

By: Carli Whitwell Source: net-a-porter.com Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Scalp stimulant

Phyto phytopolleine botanical scalp stimulant ($47), at lookfantastic.com.   READ MORE: The most soothing hair products

By: Carli Whitwell Source: lookfantastic.com Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Scalp oil

Earth's nectar jojoba & tea tree scalp oil ($23), at sephora.com.     READ MORE: Celebrites wearing their hair in braids

By: Carli Whitwell Source: sephora.com Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Scalp mask

Philip Kingsley exfoliating scalp mask ($40), at net-a-porter.com.   READ MORE: 3 red-carpet secrets from celeb hair stylist Kim Kimble

By: Carli Whitwell Source: net-a-porter.com Credits: ELLE Canada

9 products to help your dandruff

Therapeutic shampoo

T/Gel therapeutic shampoo ($12), at drug stores and mass-market retailers.   READ MORE: The secret to wearing your hair in a glitter part as a grown woman

By: Carli Whitwell Source: neutrogena.com Credits: ELLE Canada
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Hair

The truth about dandruff and how to treat it