Why is Scalp Care so Important?
“Traditionally our scalp is overlooked. We’re accustomed to cleansing and conditioning our hair, but in reality, our scalp needs to be treated in the same way we care for our skin,” says Nancy Twine, founder of Briogeo. If you have damaged hair and have tried many hair masks and hair oils and aren’t seeing much improvement in the health of your hair, maybe the problem is not external but internal. Meaning that your scalp is not in its best shape which isn’t allowing optimal growth for your hair, think clogging and in-grown hair. The solution is starting to look after and treat our scalp like it is part of our skin, and develop a routine to maintain good scalp health and healthy hair growth. “We exfoliate our face to remove dry skin and debris so we can reap the benefits of our serums and moisturisers, and this is what we should be doing for our scalp too, says Nancy Twine.” If you’re not sure where to start you scalp care journey, here’s what we recommend doing.
How to Get a Healthy Scalp
Implementing scalp treatments into your haircare routine will help relieve itchiness and potentially reduce the amount of dandruff your scalp produces. Not all scalps are created equal, as some people have more oily ones and other dry. How do you know? This is usually similar to your skin type, but also think about how quickly your hair gets oily. The faster, the oilier your scalp is.
Step 1: Use a Pre-wash Scalp OilSounds odd to start with an oil, which we would usually use to finish a hair or a skincare routine, but for your scalp, this would be the first step. Using a scalp oil will help nourish and hydrate a dry, flaky and often itchy scalp and on the long term, this will help promote healthy hair growth as it will reduce the excess sebum caused by dryness.
Step 2: Exfoliate your ScalpJust like our face, our scalp also needs that exfoliation. Between the products we use on our hair and environmental stressors like pollution, our scalp needs that clean slate. You can choose a physical or a liquid exfoliator, based on what you find the most practical and how much your scalp might need that exfoliation. “The best way to do this is with a gentle physical exfoliant which has been balanced with moisturising ingredients to combat any dryness,” advises Nancy, who suggests doing this once or twice a week to wash away product build-up and dry skin. This will help unclog pores and allow your scalp to breathe a little bit more. This can really help with your scalp health, especially if you are prone to dandruff, exfoliation is key.
Step 3: Cleanse and Massage your ScalpWhen washing your hair, you want to make you’re focusing on your tresses but even more on your scalp, because that’s usually where oily hair starts to show. To get a nice and clean scalp, you want to massage it to make sure you’re stimulating hair growth, you can do that with your hands or with a scalp massager. This will help distribute your products evenly and it also feels really relaxing if we’re honest.
Step 4: Finish off with a Scalp SerumWhen we’re done cleansing our skin, we usually move on to serums and treatments and your scalp is no exception. Once your hair is clean, don’t leave it alone because it needs as much love as your tresses do. We love using a scalp serum like the new Ouai Scalp Serum to nourish the scalp and promote fuller hair growth.
Step 5: Avoid Dry Shampoo Build-upWe all love using a dry shampoo to fake that first day hair but keep in mind that you’re adding another layer of product onto your hair and scalp that needs to be washed off. “Most dry shampoos contain starch to absorb excess oils and, while this alone isn’t harmful, if it builds up on your scalp it can cause irritation such as dryness, redness and itchiness,” warns Aveda’s Creative Director, Michael Lendon.
Our Favourite Scalp Care Products
Brands like Briogeo and Ceremonia are tapping into scalp care, and we’re definitely here for it. If you’re looking to build your scalp treatment arsenal, here are some of our favourites we recommend getting your hands on:
How Often Should I Exfoliate my Scalp?
Exfoliation should always be done with moderation because we never want to damage our skin barrier, quite the opposite, we want to clean and fortify it. Same goes for our scalp, you want to keep it to once or twice a week because you don’t want to dry your scalp out, which would cause irritation and risk snapping your hair at the root. It’s all a matter of good measure, but once you find your balance, you’ll see a difference in your hair.
What does a Healthy Scalp Look Like?
How do you know that your scalp is now healthy? When you look at the roots of your hair, you shouldn’t see any redness or flakiness happening. But most importantly, you’ll feel that your scalp is healthy because of the way your hair is growing. It will grow a bit faster and fuller, plus it won’t get greasy as quickly as it used to. There are some in-house scalp treatments you can do if you want to get up close and personal and really keep up with your scalp’s health.
The Final Note on Scalp Care
What you need to remember is that scalp care is skincare. If you love your skincare routine, you also want to start implementing a scalp routine to give your scalp and hair the TLC they deserve. From pre-wash care to finishing products, your hair wash day is taking a complete turn.
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