The knowledge of several herbal medicines is very old and still useful. Our elders used to collect several herbs growing around the house to use them for various conditions. Dandruff is a condition of the scalp that causes flakes of skin to appear. It is a common condition, which is marked by itching. In some cases, it can be embarrassing and not easy to treat. Instead of using harsh chemicals, one can use several types of oils and herbs to control dandruff.
Causes for dandruff: Several reasons lead to dandruff in our scalp and hair. Unhygienic condition, puberty, lack of oil in scalp, depression and stress, diabetes, infection, poor diet, chlorinated water, winter season and dryness are the common factors.
Home remedies for dandruff:
- Apply coconut oil and massage: Take 2 to 3 teaspoons of coconut oil and massage on the scalp. Wash hair after an hour with warm water. Repeat this 2 to 3 times in a week or alternate days or till you see the result.
- Lemon and olive oil: Mix a tsp of lemon juice in two tsp of olive oil. Apply this on scalp. Leave it for an hour or two (or overnight) and then wash hair using warm water. Repeat this 2 to 3 times in a week.
- Neem leaves: Boil neem leaves with little water. After cooling make paste and apply on the scalp. Leave for half an hour to one hour. Wash using warm water. Repeat this 2 to 3 times in a week.
- Fenugreek seed: Soap a tablespoon of fenugreek seed overnight. Grind soaked seeds in the morning and apply on the scalp. Wash the hair after couple of hours using herbal shampoo. Repeat this 2 to 3 times in a week.
- Castor oil: Apply refined castor oil on scalp, massage for few minutes. Leave it overnight and wash hair using warmer water. It takes few minutes to remove all castor oil as it is thick and sticky oil. Repeat this twice a week.
- Henna and amla powder: Mix equal amount of henna and amla (Indian gooseberry) powder in water and prepare paste. Apply this on the scalp and hair. Wash hair after 3 hours.
- Henna and yogurt mix: Mix two tsp of henna powder with fresh yogurt. Apply this mix on hair and scalp. Leave for an hour and wash hair.
- Aloe vera gel: Take couple of good well developed Aloe vera leaves and cut open to remove the gel. Apply the gel well on the scalp and hair. Leave it for 2 hours and wash using slightly warm water.
- Aloe vera gel, coconut and sesame oil mix: Mix 4 tsp of Aloe vera gel with 2 tsp each of coconut and sesame oil. Apply this on scalp and hair. If the Sun is out sit in the sun for few minutes. Allow the mix to soak your scalp. Wash using mild shampoo.
- Amla and Tulsi leaves: Mix amla powder with Tulsi leaves and prepare paste using water. Apply this on scalp and leave for about 30 minutes. Wash using a herbal shampoo.
- Hibiscus leaves: Collect few young hibiscus leaves and boil for few minutes. Allow it to cool and squeeze the leaves to get slimy liquid. Apply this on hair as shampoo and wash with water. This gives shiny hair and removes dandruff too.
- Hibiscus flower and shikakai: Boil few hibiscus flower and allow it to cool. Squeeze and collect the slimy liquid. To this add shikakai powder ( a tsp). Mix well and use as shampoo. This nourishes hair and removes the dandruff and hair looks shiny.
- Indian gooseberry (amla): Take few gooseberries and grind them to a fine paste. Apply this paste on hair and scalp. Wash using warm water after an hour to get rid of dandruff.
- Tea tree oil: Mix few drops of tea tree oil with your shampoo. Apply this while washing hair and leave for 5 to 10 minutes. Wash hair using warm water.
- Centella asiatica leaves: Collect 20-25 Centella (gotukola) leaves and put these leaves in a bottle. Add 2 tbs each of coconut oil, sesame oil and olive oil. Mix well and leave it under sunlight or slightly warm this by transferring to a container. Apply this oil on the scalp and massage well. Wash hair using warm water.
- Bhangra (Bringraj) leaves in sesame oil: Add bringraj (Eclipta alba) leaves in sesame oil. You can mix Centella leaves with this. Warm it slightly so that leaves contents will seep into the oil. Apply this on scalp and leave for few hours. Wash hair using warm water.
- Sesame oil: Slightly warm sesame oil and apply on hair and scalp. Massage for few minutes and leave it for 2 to 3 hours. Wash hair using warm water.
- Take care of your combs: Do not and never share your combs and hair brushes. Wash them regularly by soaking in shampoo water and dry properly before combing your hair.
- Apply hair oil regularly: Do not stop applying hair oils. The misconception is that, our scalp and skin produces oil and is sufficient for our hair. Fact is that we expose to severe weather and hair will lose oil content. As our grandmothers did, we should continue to take care of our hair by massaging our scalp using hair oils.
- Do not remove oil totally from your hair: Hair need to keep in some moisture content. Oil acts as a protector for the hair and shields hair and scalp by keeping the moisture content which helps growth of hair healthy and shiny.
- Use hair cap if you are a swimmer: Use hair cap and protect your hair from chlorinated water. Chlorine causes dryness and dandruff in the scalp. Using hair cap helps to keep the chlorine away.
- Avoid using hair dryer as much as possible: Use natural sunlight to dry wet hair. Sunlight supplies vitamin D and keeps the hair shiny. Heat from hair dryer may damage your scalp and split your hair.
It is important to wash hair and keep it out of unhygienic conditions. Always try to use shampoos that are derived from herbs and avoid harsh chemicals. Several of above tips are in use by many as all these are recommended by our grandmothers. If your dandruff problem is persistent and not going away then contact a skin specialist or talk to your doctor.