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Natural Hair: What to Do About That Dry, Itchy, Flaky Scalp
If you are like me, one of the main reasons you may have decided to go natural is / was because of the constant itchy, dry and flaky scalp you may have experienced as a result of chemical straightening. My scalp was completely, I mean COMPLETELY, fried when I stopped straightening. To the point that when I would blow dry my hair huge flakes and scabs would go flying around the room. My hair also always looked flaky. But I did not think of it as dandruff, just severely chemically damaged and burned skin. It was gross. 3 years later, my scalp is still not completely healed, but it is much better. It definitely does not itch anymore. I started doing scalp massage and I saw results pretty fast after that. I also learned that the best thing for the scalp is to do the following:
- Wash your hair at least twice a week, if possible, paying attention to massaging the scalp.
- Add to your routine, a generous scalp massage with oil on a regular basis. The oil should be something like tea tree or rosemary (if you can stand the smell) or other essential oils. Mix the tea tree or rosemary oil in with a base oil such as olive or jojoba oil ... this will be a mix of, lets say 10 drops of essential oil to every ounce of the base oil. You just apply a few drops (a few drops for each section) to your fingers and massage your scalp in sections around your head.
- Drink water.
- Take fish oils and or eat lots of foods with good fats (like salmon and avocado).
- DO NOT use any shampoo with sulfates or other detergents. Use shampoo with natural ingredients or co-poo only.
- DO NOT use witchhazel or sea breeze as people often offer. These just contain alcohol which cause more drying.
- I also personally believe that the dandruff shampoos are also bad news. It seems better to use more natural approaches to solve the problem. But I'm not a dermatologist, so this is not "educated" advice, just advice from my own experience. I tried all of the maximum strength dandruff shampoos and I only felt like my hair was suffering and my scalp problems came back as soon as I stopped using them.
- If you feel like you need to bring out the big guns, do a weekly or bi weekly rinse of 1 part acv (apple cider vinegar), 1 part hydrogen peroxide, and 3 parts water also works well well. I did this to start out, and the relief and healing came pretty quickly. I just did not like the smell of the acv, so I moved on to try the next thing.