What are Some Natural Remedies for Dandruff?

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  • Written By: C. Ausbrooks
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 04 November 2019
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Dandruff is the shedding of skin on the scalp, and is evident in white flakes on the head and shoulders. It can be caused by fungal infections, poor diet, stress, hormonal imbalances, immune suppression, or the increased use of chemical hair preparations. Natural remedies for dandruff are often used as a preventative and treatment.

Tea tree oil is an essential oil from the leaves of the native Australian plant, Melaleuca alternifolia. It is a powerful anti-fungal agent and antiseptic. Tea tree oil shampoos are effective natural remedies for dandruff, and can be found in natural health food stores and some drug stores.

Another option is to make an anti-dandruff shampoo by combining 5-10 drops of tea tree essential oil with 8 ounces of unscented liquid castile soap. Shampoo the hair as normal and rinse thoroughly. When applied regularly or at least three times per week, this treatment will heal the scalp, improve circulation, and decrease or remove dandruff flakes.

Other essential oils may also prove beneficial to sufferers of dandruff. Lemon and rosemary essential oils can be applied after using dandruff shampoo. After the hair is thoroughly dried, a few drops of each oil, dropped onto the palms, should be massaged into the scalp. This should be followed by brushing the hair with a soft brush.


Apple cider vinegar is one of the most popular home remedies for dandruff. Its acidic nature is thought to relieve itching and dryness of the scalp. A weekly application of equal parts apple cider vinegar and distilled water rubbed into the scalp may decrease dandruff symptoms. A few drops of tea tree essential oil can also be added to the mixture.

Hot oil packs can also be used as effective natural remedies for dandruff. Castor oil, olive oil, or flaxseed oil can be used. The oil is warmed, and then massaged into the scalp. The hair is then bound with a plastic shower cap to keep the heat in, and the mixture is allowed to remain on the head for at least one hour. The oil should be rinsed out thoroughly using a non-detergent, natural shampoo with an avocado or castile base.

Nettle, also known as stinging nettle, is highly regarded as one of the traditional natural remedies for dandruff. An infusion is made by steeping four tablespoons of dried nettle leaves in one pint of boiling water for 30 minutes. After straining the plant material, ¼ cup (60ml) of apple cider vinegar is added to the nettle infusion. This preparation can be massaged into the scalp each night before bed to prevent and treat dandruff.


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Post 4

I have heard that remedies for acne can work on dandruff, too. Both are caused by super oily glands in the skin, so it's important to keep both clean.

It doesn't sound logical, but olive oil can help you do this. When I first heard this, I was skeptical, because how could putting an oil onto your skin help fight something caused by hyperactive oil glands?

Well, it seems that the olive oil binds to the dandruff flakes and to dead skin on your face, and when you rinse it off, the junk goes with it. Of course, you shouldn't use it every day, but if you do it a couple of times a week, it can really help with both problems.

Post 3

@kylee07drg – I agree with you. It does seem like it would affect your hair's appearance. That's why I only use oil when I know that I can rinse it out soon.

I like using hot oil on my hair. I have a fairly dry scalp, so I only wash my hair every other day. In between washings, I use the hot oil.

I massage it in thoroughly, and then I put a shower cap on my head and read a magazine while it soaks in. Since I've been using the hot oil, I haven't had any issues with dandruff.

Post 2

I understand how the use of essential oils could moisturize your scalp and prevent dandruff, but it seems to me that they would make your scalp look really oily. If all you are doing is just applying them and then massaging them in and brushing them through your hair, then you are getting oil not only all over your roots, which tend to look the oiliest, but all throughout your hair.

I have problems with my hair looking oily by the end of the day, anyway, so I couldn't imagine putting more oil on it. I do have problems with dandruff, but I just use a dandruff shampoo to control the issue.

Post 1

One of the best homemade remedies for dandruff seems to be eliminating your use of shampoo. My friend started using only natural items to cleanse and condition her hair, and it looks great.

The harsh shampoo she had been using was drying her scalp out and causing the dandruff. She had heard that some people use only baking soda and water to clean their hair, so she tried it, and she said it worked perfectly fine.

She followed up with a mixture of apple cider vinegar and water. She put this on her hair and let it soak in awhile, and then she rinsed it out. She says that her hair is softer now, and most importantly, it is flake-free.

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