An itchy, dry scalp, like itchy, dry skin anywhere on the body, needs to be looked after carefully.

One obvious sign that your scalp is dry and in need of extra attention are the white flakes of dandruff that can appear on your clothes when your head is scratched but scalps can also be red, irritated and sore and not shed dandruff.

A dry sensitive scalp can also manifest as scaly skin around the hairline and behind the ears or bumpy, reddened or inflamed patches on the neck and scalp.

Dry skin on the scalp can be caused by various things:

  • Dry cold weather
  • Central heating
  • Dietary deficiencies
  • Frequent shampooing
  • Soaps and detergents
  • Hair products

Dry skin on the scalp can be really difficult to manage because scalps are hard to treat with the sort of lotions and creams that you’d usually use to moisturise your hands or face. Any product is likely to be tricky to work into the hair and a challenge to apply frequently enough to keep the scalp in good condition. Oils can be easily massaged into the scalp but leave a greasy residue and usually need to be washed off the hair.

The other issue is finding a product that can moisturise and condition your scalp without aggravating any more serious skin condition, like the common condition of seborrheic dermatitis or scalp psoriasis (see below). High street scalp treatments and shampoos might well moisturise and cleanse your hair and scalp but a sensitive or sore scalp can react to harsh chemical additives such as fragrances and preservatives. Choosing a product that works to keep your head and hair in excellent condition when you have sensitive or dry skin could mean avoiding most shampoos or scalp oils with their long list of man-made ingredients and sticking to very simple, pure and natural products that are less likely to cause a reaction.

We Recommend: Balmonds Scalp Oil to moisturise and nourish itchy, flaky, dry scalps.

Our Scalp Oil also contains antifungal rosemary and borage oils to inhibit yeast growth.

It is easily massaged into the scalp and can be left on overnight with a towel wrapped around the head. Wash out with a very mild, hypo-allergenic shampoo in the morning.

It contains no preservatives or added fragrances - just the scent of the pure and effective oils we use.

It is also suitable for people who may be prone to eczema, seborrheic dermatitis or scalp psoriasis.

Seborrheic Dermatitis

Seborrheic Dermatitis is a disorder that causes flaky skin, redness and itching. It tends to affect the scalp, like a more inflamed and itchy dandruff - in babies it’s often known as Cradle Cap - although it can affect the face and upper chest as well. It is thought to be an inflammatory overreaction to a yeast found on the skin. (More information can be found at the National Eczema website)

Scalp Psoriasis

At least half of all the people who have psoriasis have it on their scalp. Scalp psoriasis can be very mild, with slight, fine scaling. It can also be very severe with thick, crusted plaques covering the entire scalp."

"Psoriasis can extend beyond the hairline onto the forehead, the back of the neck and around the ears."

"Other skin disorders, such as seborrheic dermatitis, may look similar to psoriasis. However, scalp psoriasis appears powdery with a silvery sheen, while seborrheic dermatitis appears yellowish and greasy.”