Dandruff vs. Dry Scalp: Knowing the Difference

When your head begins to feel itchy and scratchy, you can’t help but dig your nails in to feel relieved when you scratch. When you see flakes falling from your scalp, you could get worried and assume you have dandruff. It could also be a dry scalp, which is incredibly common. The two often get mixed up.

So, what are some of the critical differences between dry skin and dandruff? Although they are two entirely different conditions, they share similar symptoms. So, here is how to know the difference between dandruff and dry scalp so you can treat it and be free from worry.

What Is Dandruff?

Like everywhere else on your skin, the scalp contains dead skin cells. Over time, these skin cells flake off and fall from your scalp. Dandruff happens when dead skin cells flake off quickly. As a result, dandruff can cause fungal infections, increase oil secretion, and sensitivity to hair products.

There are many different types of dandruff. The most common kind is called Malassezia; getting it depends on your age, hormones, and level of stress. The big giveaway for Malassezia is that the flakes appear bigger, have an oily sheen, and cause the scalp to look red and scaly.

What Is Dry Scalp?

Dry scalp happens when the scalp lacks the necessary oil production. As a result, itching, flaking, and irritation can happen. Dry scalp results in small flakes. And, as its name implies, dry scalp makes the hair look dry since there is a lack of sebum production in the skin. Some causes include dry air, excessive washing, and underlying skin conditions such as eczema.

Treatment Options

When it comes to treating dry scalp, it's relatively simple. You need a proper shampoo and conditioner that doesn't dry your scalp further. For instance, you could use a vegan sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner set. If you aren't sure if you have a dry scalp or dandruff, apply some moisturizer to your scalp before bed. If your scalp appears healthier and less flaky, then it's a dry scalp. If you have dandruff, get shampoos that kill the fungal bacteria and remove the flakes.

Understanding how to know the difference between dandruff and dry scalp is important so you can take care of it right away.

Having an itchy scalp is no fun and can put a damper on your day. Thankfully, we at Max Green Alchemy can help you. Since 2004, we’ve been striving for green and organic personal care. We have the solution for you!

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