Scalp care is the most important thing you can do for your hair to maintain a healthy and happy head. This guide reveals everything you need to know about exfoliating your scalp (and washing it properly).
Benefits of exfoliating your scalp
- Exfoliating your scalp can help with any dandruff and dry flaky skin (psoriasis) issues.
- Exfoliating your scalp can help you to achieve better hair days.
- Exfoliating your scalp helps it with circulation and removal of oil, making it healthier and shinier.
- Exfoliating your scalp on a regular basis cleanses the skin better than just shampooing.
- Exfoliating your scalp is a simple way to help your hair grow and improve your general scalp health.
- Exfoliating your scalp can help remove dead skin and dirt.
- Exfoliating your scalp can help relieve you from headaches.
- Exfoliating your scalp can release toxins.
- Exfoliate your scalp! It’s a healthy and easy way to refresh and revitalize.
- Exfoliating your scalp can lessen itchiness.
Helpful tips for exfoliating your scalp effectively
- Wash your hair regularly.
- Do it before bedtime.
- Diligence and the right products are key to exfoliating your scalp.
- Look for ingredients that work to get the job done effectively.
- Use a gentle scrub.
- Wear a shower cap to keep your hair from drying out
What to avoid
- Ditch the detox shampoos.
- Avoid soaps, especially the antibacterial ones.
- Too much shampoo stripping it of its natural oil could lead to dry roots and result to dandruff.
- Glycolic acid, sodium hydroxide, and other AHA’s.
- Don’t fall for ‘magic powder’ claims. Sulfates are terrible for your hair.
- Low to no ammonia products.
- Conditioner that contains dimethicone (aka cyclomethicone) or amodimethicone (aka cetyl dimethicone).
- Avoid expensive kits that contain all of these products and ingredients.
- Avoid home remedies as they may irritate your skin or scalp.
- Avoid scratching or irritating your scalp when exfoliating.
- Avoid Hair loss treatments, they damage your hair.
How often should you exfoliate?
Scalp exfoliation is best done 1-2 times a week at most. It’s best to do the exfoliation on non-shampoo days so that the scalp is more exposed (with less oil).
When is the best time to exfoliate my scalp – what is my skin readiness?
It’s best to exfoliate your scalp when your skin is ready. Each skin is different and requires different care. We all have a sebum production cycle. Our skin produces it’s oils in cycles. If you exfoliate before the sebum cycle is completed then you may wash off the free oils on your skin that keeps it supple and hydrated.
Therefore, the best time to exfoliate is when your sebum production is high.
Learn the difference between exfoliating your scalp and shampooing it
You shampoo your hair to clean it. You exfoliate your scalp to stimulate it.
How to look for an exfoliator that best fits you
Choose an exfoliant that’s right for you, with a pH level that won’t disrupt your scalp’s natural pH levels.
How to properly exfoliate your scalp
Time needed: 25 minutes.
This scalp care video guide is best information source on how to properly exfoliate your scalp. Learn about how to properly exfoliate your scalp so that you can get rid of dry skin and dandruff.
Scalp exfoliation is a great way to remove dirt and oil buildup from your scalp. It also helps when you have dandruff. The exfoliating process improves the health of your scalp and hair. This is particularly beneficial if you have dry, sensitive, or itchy scalp.
Our scalp care video guide to proper exfoliation and hydration will help you understand and identify scalp issues while providing tips on how to prevent them.
- WET HAIR
The first step is to wet your hair. Do not shampoo first! If possible wet your scalp with cold water first and towel off using a towel that will not leave any fuzz on your head. This will help maximize the polishing of the hair shaft.
It is not recommended to exfoliate your skin while in the shower. Start out by wetting your hair with warm water, then apply a small amount of shampoo to your fingertips. Take care to only use a small amount of shampoo, as you don’t want the solution to be too runny.
You know by now that exfoliating the skin on your face is done in the shower. The same applies for exfoliating your scalp. Excess oil and dirt causes clogged pores. If you do not regularly wash your hair, you can count on a flaky scalp.
The reason for this is the same as when washing your hair in general, you have to make sure that all of your dirt is removed first. If there is some sort of oil or grease on your scalp, the particles will become embedded into the surface layer of skin and simply clean off without having any long-lasting results to improve your scalp’s health.
- PURIFYING SCRUB
Step 2 in revitalizing your scalp is using a scrub to exfoliate the skin. Your scalp benefits from exfoliation too! Especially if you wear extensions or have dandruff.
Scrubbing away layers of skin and dirt is a common practice in beauty care. It’s also quite an effective one. Pores are pampered with exfoliating scrubs to free them from dirt, dry skin cells, sebum and impurities.
During this step, you’ll want to work up a small lather of the scrub in your palm and apply it to your scalp. Next, you’ll want to focus on scrubbing your entire scalp at a time, working slowly from the front of your head towards the back. The best direction for scrubbing is from the top down and back to front – never in circles!
Using a purifying scrub or an exfoliating scalp treatment will help you prevent clogged follicles and get rid of built-up oils, dirt, and dead skin. All of this will lead to a healthier scalp environment and increased growth.
The first thing that you want to do when scrubbing your scalp is picking out a good exfoliating product. You will want a gentle CLEAR exfoliating scrub with no colored beads, oils or moisturizers in it. Oils and moisturizers are great for your skin but they just end up sticking to dirt/crud on your scalp and hair shaft.
I’m going to be honest and say that I don’t recommend using just any exfoliating scrub on your forehead. Suffocating your pores with a harsh cleanser on the area just above the hairline could cause skin irritation. Instead choose a scrub made specifically for cleansing the scalp. Be sure to avoid those that contain natural oils, because they can actually stimulate the body’s oil glands.
- MASSAGE THE SCRUB
Now it’s time to start massaging the product in to your scalp. Massaging the scrub will help open up your pores, allowing for better absorption of nutrients. Take your fingers and rub in a circular or up and down fashion, whichever you prefer. Just make sure the oil and mixture are spread evenly through out your scalp. You don’t want to miss any spots!
Using your fingertips (not nails), work the scrub into every last inch of scalp surface. This will take some time, so don’t rush it.
This will encourage hair to grow healthy and strong from the roots. Massage the scrub throughout your scalp by making scrubbing motions with your fingernails. Do not press down — just massage! Be careful not to overdo it, especially if it’s your first time using these techniques.
This is a very important step that cannot be ignored! If not done carefully, this can lead to itchiness and irritation of the skin. In order to do this properly, I recommend beginning at the front of your head and moving to the back. Once completed, rinse away any excess and dry away any moisture.
This step allows you to work deep in your scalp to remove dirt and dead skin cells buildup, which contributes to hair loss. During this process, it’s important to massage the scrub deeper into your scalp as you may tend to concentrate on moving the scrub across the surface of your hair.
You should feel the scrub working deeply into your skin during this massage stage. It’s also important to note that it may be uncomfortable at first because we’re concentrating so much pressure on our skin. But just remember, it’s only for 10 minutes, which is a much easier commitment than a lifetime of hair loss.
At long last, you’ve arrived at the final step in a full scalp scrub: rinsing. I’ll admit that it’s my least favorite part for some reason, but the water helps rinse your skin completely of the oils and dead skin that was so diligently sloughed off minutes earlier. My scalp tends to be pretty sensitive, so I’m often a few minutes late to the party while my hair is going poof all over my head (can you say flyaway hair?). But when I do get around to rinsing, I hold out my showerhead and let the water eventually cascade down by way of gravity to my poor, parched skin.
Now that you’ve scrubbed away all the dirt and gunk, it’s time to rinse! Keep rinsing until the water runs clear. Initially, you’ll notice that the water will be “gray” – this is grime being taken away from your scalp – but don’t worry, this is supposed to happen!
This part is as important as the rest. You should NOT just quickly rinse the sulfur salt mixture out without rubbing it in and really getting it deep into your scalp. This is the most important step when it comes to “pulling out the gunk,” so don’t rush through this part or skip it altogether.
If you still feel like there are flakes or dirt, don’t worry. You can thoroughly rinse your scalp several times to get all of the residue off.
Exfoliating your scalp is an important part of your healthy hair routine, and by performing this step you’re helping cut down on thinning/bald spots over time.
There are a few different ways to exfoliate your scalp and it took me a while to figure out which one worked best for my hair. The key is consistency (once a week is enough) and using a scrub that’s formulated for your hair type.