How to Get Rid of Dandruff: 11 Natural Treatments

Skip the dandruff shampoo and try these homemade dandruff treatments to banish those pesky white flakes.

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What gets rid of dandruff?

What gets rid of dandruff?iStock/stock_colors
Dandruff may be the result of a dry scalp, or a skin condition called seborrheic dermatitis. It could also be caused by eczema, psoriasis, or, very commonly, an overgrowth of a yeastlike fungus called malassezia. (Here are surprising reasons you may be suddenly prone to dandruff). Drugstore remedies might include shampoos with zinc pyrithione, which targets fungus and bacteria; ketoconazole, which also fights fungus; coal tar and selenium sulfide, which slow the growth and die-off of skin cells on your scalp; and salicylic acid, which loosens flakes so they can be washed away. For natural treatments, read on.

Aspirin

AspiriniStock/kellyreekolibry
Aspirin contains the same active ingredient (salicylic acid) as many medicated dandruff shampoos. Keep flaking in check by crushing two aspirins to a fine powder and adding it to the normal amount of shampoo you use each time you wash your hair. Leave the mixture on your hair for 1-2 minutes, then rinse well and wash again with plain shampoo.

Tea tree oil

Tea tree oiliStock/temmuz can arsiray
One study showed that shampoos with just 5 percent tea tree oil significantly improves the severity of dandruff. You can also add a few drops of tea tree oil to your favorite shampoo as you wash normally.

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Baking soda

Baking sodaiStock/Christopher Stokey
Your kitchen could hold the key to an itch-free, flake-free scalp. Wet your hair and then rub a handful of baking soda vigorously into your scalp. Skip the shampoo and go right to rinsing. Baking soda reduces overactive fungi that can cause dandruff. Your hair may get dried out at first, but after a few weeks your scalp will start producing natural oils, leaving your hair softer and free of flakes.

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar iStock/FotografiaBasica
Dr. Mehmet Oz swears by apple cider vinegar as a dandruff treatment, as the acidity of apple cider vinegar changes the pH of your scalp, making it harder for yeast to grow. Mix a quarter cup apple cider vinegar with a quarter cup water in a spray bottle and spritz on your scalp. Wrap your head in a towel and let sit for 15 minutes to an hour, then wash your hair as usual. Do this twice a week.

Mouthwash

MouthwashiStock/tab1962
To treat a bad case of dandruff, wash your hair with your regular shampoo, then rinse with an alcohol-based mouthwash. Follow with your regular conditioner. Mouthwash's anti-fungal properties help prevent dandruff-causing yeast from growing.

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Coconut oil

Coconut oiliStock/yasuhiroamano
Crunchybetty.com says coconut oil is a "tried and true" dandruff treatment, and it smells nice too. Before showering, massage 3-5 tablespoons of coconut oil into your scalp and let sit for about an hour. Shampoo normally. You can also look for a shampoo that already contains coconut oil.

Lemon

LemoniStock/5second
Dandruff relief may be no farther away than your refrigerator. Just massage 2 tablespoons lemon juice into your scalp and rinse with water. Then stir 1 teaspoon lemon juice into 1 cup water and rinse your hair with it. Repeat this daily until your dandruff disappears. Lemon's acidity helps balance the pH of your scalp, which helps keeps dandruff at bay.

Salt

SaltiStock/ollo
The abrasiveness of ordinary table salt works great for scrubbing out dandruff flakes before you shampoo. Grab a saltshaker and shake some salt onto your dry scalp. Then work it through your hair, giving your scalp a massage. You'll find you've worked out the dry, flaky skin and are ready for a shampoo.

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Aloe vera

Aloe vera iStock/lubilub
Stop yourself from scratching by massaging aloe vera into your scalp before shampooing. The cooling effects of aloe vera will soothe the itch.

Garlic

Garlic iStock/ipopba
Garlic's antimicrobial properties are perfect for eliminating dandruff-causing bacteria. Crush garlic and rub it into your scalp. To avoid that potent smell, healwithfood.org suggests mixing crushed garlic with honey and massaging into the scalp before washing as usual.

Olive oil

Olive oiliStock/mythja
An overnight olive oil soak is a folk remedy for dandruff. Massage about 10 drops into your scalp and cover with a shower cap overnight. Follow your regular shampoo routine in the morning. For a quicker cure, look for a shampoo that contains olive oil.

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30 thoughts on “How to Get Rid of Dandruff: 11 Natural Treatments

  1. I HAD DANDRUFF SINCE I WAS BORN I WANT TO GET RID OF IT FAST BUT NOTHING SEEMS TO HELP

  2. In my head dandraf is more.6 Months back Doctor give treatment for 3 Months but IT cont be control.Day to day falling or felloding.

    1. all those treatments that docs give are always helpless!!! try heads and shoulders and dont keep switching between different shampoos.

      1. never use head and shoulders if you want to have hair on your head, use sulfate free clarifying shampoo , don’t use hot water and don’t wash it too often , don’t sleep with wet hair , don’t tie wet hair. it will work

  3. Taking asprin is a natural solution? Are you joking? How much did they pay you? Aspirin for your information is not natural.

    1. I don’t think they mean taking it by mouth. I’ve read somewhere that you are supposed to crush it and put it in your shampoo.

  4. hiii guys i hv cevere dandruff problem since my
    childhood now m 25yrs old i hv tkn so many medicl
    treatments but but facing same prblm …plzzz gv me suggestion

    1. Thanks but not lpoking for a med that will give me a different problem to worry about.

  5. I have dandruff around the hairline really bad. Any suggestions?

    1. Omg I have the same problem. I don’t know what to do, its getting worse I have it all over my head, so my remedie is to wear my hair down. I’m looking for homemade remedies, do you guys no any? What do you think I should do, and I’m embarrassed to even wear my hair up now. PLEASE HELP!!!

  6. Is it can’t affect a rebonded hair ..henever i used one of those treatment?

  7. Why is it that I take showers every night and every next morning, I feel my hair so dry and see dandruff?

    1. don’t take showers so often, showers (especially hot ones) dry out your scalp therefore that is what is likely to be causing your dandruff.

    2. my mother told me its because you go to bed with your hair wet because the soap drying on your scalp, so make sure blow dry your hair after you take a shower. Your welcome!

  8. Hey guys I have a problem with dandruff too, except it seems like my hair gets very wet in spots and then starts to itch and burn? It happens more often when i get hot.

  9. Some labs actually use olive oil to culture the yeasts that cause dandruff, so it might work if you just have dry skin flakes as opposed to dandruff.

  10. i had been dandruff problem since last 2 years,i take many treatment and i used many anti dandruff shampoo’s but it cant help me to get read of it and my hair fall problem is continue now what should i do?

    1. In many cases, dandruff is caused by chlorine in the water. Many people have a naturally dry scalp and the chlorine just exacerbates that condition causing dandruff. These treatments are more for fungi based dandruff so they may not be effective.

  11. Oatmeal is good for the hair follicles and soothes them as well as hydrates them. You are welcome.

    1. Really? Oatmeal? Its been sitting in my food cabinet forever and I suffer from acute dandruff…feel like cutting off my hands right about now. Huge sigh..

  12. Article?? BTW if u have oatmeal take oatmeal baths and let oatmeal sit in Ur hair! :) your welcome – I smiley

      1. use egg white for your hair before u bath..
        do oil massage regularly..
        keep your scalp wet dont make it dry..
        bec of dandruff dont cut your hairs then it takes long time to grow.
        Dont change your shampoos offen use only one..
        dont use oil which has more perfume..

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