Is It Dandruff Or Do I Just Have A Dry Scalp?

Jan.18, 2021 · 


Frantically scratching your scalp while among friends? Whitish flakes falling on your shoulders while you stylishly tap your head like a drum? Yep, these can make for some awkward moments and you conclude, "I have Dandruff". Don't be embarrassed if you do as this condition is suffered by half of the adult population in the world anyway. It is not caused by a lack of personal hygiene and is certainly not a sign of dirty hair.

That being said, dry, itching and flaking scalp does not always equate to dandruff. It can be a dry scalp condition. Dry scalp and dandruff even with similar main symptoms are very different scalp conditions. It is crucial to understand which exactly you have so as to know what treatment and control steps to take.


Dandruff: Causes and Symptoms



Dandruff is a scalp condition that causes the scalp to itch and flake. These flakes and scales are a build-up of dead skin cells that are being shed. Some of the common symptoms of dandruff include:




-Light yellow or Whitish flakes coming off the scalp falling on shoulders and hair.


-Redish and inflamed scalp.





Causes of Dandruff



1. A  Malassezia Globosa yeast infestation that causes excess growth of skin cells on the scalp and subsequent excessive shedding of the dead skin cells. The faster the skin cells shed, the worse the scalp's dandruff condition.


2. Excess secretion of the scalp oil Sebum from the scalp sebaceous glands can lead to oily build-up in the scalp.


3. Infrequent Shampooing causes dead skin cells to accumulate in the scalp makes the dandruff more visible and increases Itching on scalp.


4.  A Diet with lots of bad fats, processed food, and added sugar, including an overabundance of dairy products can promote excess oil production in the skin and scalp.


- Hot weather especially in the summer, can cause excessive sweating, which is the perfect condition for the yeast Malassezia globosa to thrive and worsen the scalp's dandruff condition.


-A fungal colonization on the scalp surface by the fungus Candida albican which thrives in warm moist areas.

Dry Scalp : Causes and Symptoms



Dry Scalp is also characterized by an itchy and flaky scalp but this happens when your skin and scalp have too little moisture. Flaking off of dry skin can happen on the scalp, legs or arms.



Causes of Dry Scalp


- The dry, cold air of the winter climate drys out the scalp.


- Excessive Shampooing


-Dehydration causes the body to direct what little moisture it has to important body functions leaving the skin and scalp deficient.


- Irritation from a reaction to products applied to your scalp such as hairspray or shampoo.


-Harmful hair practices, for instance, blowdrying hair on high heat.






Dandruff Vs Dry Scalp





Dandruff is often caused by among other things, excess oil on the scalp, which leads to the build-up of dead skin cells and ensuing flaking. While a Dry scalp is an irritated and flaking scalp resulting from inadequate moisture in the scalp.


Here is a comparison of the main symptoms in each;


Treatment of Dandruff and Dry Scalp.



Dandruff Treatment


- Shampoos: Use shampoos that contain antibacterial and antifungal Zinc Pyrithione or  Selenium sulfide that helps slow down dead skin build up such as the Head and Shoulders shampoo (zinc pyrithione).


- Baking Soda: Rub Baking soda into your scalp and rinse after a few minutes. Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) is an exfoliant that can remove excess skin cells and oil on the scalp and also has antifungal properties that aid in fighting the fungus responsible for dandruff.


- Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse: Mix a volume of ACV(one with the mother) with twice that volume of water. Then wash the scalp with the mixture and rinse with water.


- Apply Coconut Oil and Olive oil found in the Organic Beauty Growth Serum to the scalp, cover your hair and leave overnight.

Research published in 2008 proves that Coconut and olive oil have great natural antibacterial and anti-fungal properties that can help fight the dandruff-causing Malassezia globosa. Their hydrating qualities also prevent and help control dandruff with their helping soothe dry, itchy scalps. 


- Moisturize with Aloe Vera found in the Marshmallow root and Slippery Elm Moisturizing Detangler. Aloe vera has hydrating properties which lessen itchiness, scaliness and also help in the repair of damaged hair follicles.


- Spend some time in the sun while protecting your skin with a proper SPF 30 sunscreen. Sunlight has been discovered to suppress fungus.


Read more on scalp care for hair growth HERE.



Dry Scalp Treatment and Prevention.


- Prepoo with Aloe vera in the Moisturizing Detangler, before washing hair. This adds moisture to the scalp before shampoo strips the scalp.


- Wash hair with a gentle shampoo, so as not to strip the scalp of all of its moisture. And use a moisturizing deep conditioner.


- Hydrate by drinking lots and lots of water to prevent a moisture deficit in your scalp.


- Restore Moisture to Scalp with Jojoba and Tea tree oil for its moisturizing and antibacterial properties in Organic Beauty Essence Growth Serum.


- Massage scalp with Peppermint oil to soothe and calm the itching and any redness.

Recommended for you

Moisturize, fight fungi and soothe itching with the Tea tree Oil, Virgin Olive oil and Peppermint Oils in Our Plant-based Hair Growth Serum. Formulated specially for Organic Scalp Care

Hair Growth Serum



  • Rosemary Oil 
  • Vitamin C 
  • Vitamin E 
  • Peppermint oil  
  • Jamaican Black Castor oil 
  • Extra Virgin Olive oil 
  • Tea Tree Oil 
  • Plant-based MSM - Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) 

Marshmallow Root and Slippery Elm Leave-in


  • Marshmallow root - Softens hair .
  • Slippery elm
  • Aloe Vera - Adds moisture to scalp.
  • Raw Shea butter 
  • Jamaican Black Castor oil -Restores  hair elasticity 
  • Peppermint oil  - Soothes scalp itches and promotes growth
  • Extra Virgin Olive oil & Coconut oil - anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and hydrating.

In Conclusion,


Dandruff can be managed although the flakes will come and go. While dirty hair is not the cause of dandruff, few and far between washdays cause dead skin build up, making the dandruff more visible.


Make sure to avoid hair products with harsh chemicals such as bleach and alcohol, because they dry out your scalp pronto.


Lastly, Drink Water and Get a Little Sunlight.

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