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The Best Dry Scalp Products to Treat Itchiness and Flakes Fast

Sweet, sweet relief is finally here.

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Moyo StudioGetty Images

I'm going to reveal something very personal here. There have been times in my life where I've worn a black shirt, done a light scalp scratch, then looked at my top and realized that it had snowed in 90 degree weather. Oh wait, those aren't snowflakes! Thank you for your support. Itchy, dry, uncomfortable scalps are not something that we need to accept as the norm. In an ideal world, we’d all have healthy, calm scalps that never feel itchy, dry, or flaky. But this is reality, and your scalp may need some TLC from time to time—especially when your symptoms don't always point to the same scalp issues. First, there's your run-of-the-mill winter scalp, which feels itchy and dry (but is flake-free). Then there's dandruff, which presents as itchy, white flakes that easily come off if you gently scratch your scalp. And finally, seborrheic dermatitis (seb derm), which leaves your scalp noticeably red and inflamed, with oily, scale-like patches that kind of stick to your roots. I know—chic. Though the first step to battling your itch issues is to see your doctor or derm for an official diagnosis, let's be honest, you might not have the time or the patience to do that. These tried-and-true therapies are at-home treatment options. But if after a month you still have symptoms, then you need to make an appointment (seriously, do it).

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An Oil-Based Treatment
Dry Scalp Treatment
Moroccanoil sephora.com
$38.00

This scalp treatment uses a trio of oils to rehydrate and balance an unhealthy, sad scalp. Argan oil, geranium oil, and lavender oils all help soothe and moisturize your scalp, so you can wave goodbye to your woes. 

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A Tea Tree Treatment
Hair and Scalp Treatment
Paul Mitchell amazon.com
$19.00
$16.15 (15% off)

There's nothing more irritating than the discomfort that comes from a dry and itchy scalp. This soothing trio of tea tree oil, peppermint, and lavender helps to stimulate and rid the scalp of irritation. It also leaves your strands moisturized and smelling divine.  

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A Soothing Shampoo
Dandruff Shampoo
Malin + Goetz nordstrom.com
$28.00

I'm just going to come out and say it: This shampoo is like kryptonite for scalp eczema and dandruff. Pyrithione zinc, amino acids, and tea tree all work together so that your scalp feels soothed as soon as you step out of the shower. Plus, the calming eucalyptus scent will make you forget for a moment that you're dealing with dandruff. 

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A Soothing Lotion
Mizani Scalp Care Calming Scalp Lotion
SSLLC walmart.com
$17.29

Wearing protective styles such as braids or extensions can make it difficult to access the scalp. Thankfully, this rinse-free calming solution infused with eucalyptus, aloe vera, and avocado oil comes with a concentrated nozzle to seamlessly target irritation and dryness. 

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A Sensitive Scalp Scrub
Relaxing Scrub: Soothing Scrub for Dry Scalp
Kérastase sephora.com
$51.00

Calm irritation and nourish the scalp with this gentle scrub. Madecassoside (a complex from the centella asiatica plant) helps to revitalize the scalp and address conditions like flakiness and eczema while vitamin B5, jojoba, and orange peel work to soothe and hydrate. 

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A Protective Rinse
Acid Wash ACV Cleansing Rinse
R+Co dermstore.com
$32.00

This scalp rinse is full of ingredients that protect your hair and scalp against free radicals that can be harmful to your scalp's health. It reduces the remnants of dandruff, as well as moisturizes and soothes irritation. Plus, it doubles as an anti-frizz shampoo so your scalp and your strands will thank you.

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A Scalp Elixir
Soothing Elixir
Jupiter hellojupiter.com
$26.00

Here's instant relief for all of your dry scalp woes. This lightweight elixir is infused with oat kernel, jujube fruit, olive, and eucalyptus to hydrate and ease discomfort without leaving behind a greasy residue. 

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A Scalp Serum
Clean Rinse Clarifying Scalp Serum with Niacinamide
Sunday Riley sephora.com
$48.00

This clarifying scalp serum pairs glycolic and salicylic acids to rid the hair follicle of debris, excessive buildup, and pollution. Plus, the presence of niacinamide helps to promote hair growth. 

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A Gentle Scalp Scrub
T.L.C. Happi Scalp™ Scrub
Drunk Elephant sephora.com
$36.00

Scalp scrubs are among the few fun things you can do when you're dealing with an angry scalp. It's like self-care, but for your scalp. This scrub is formulated with an AHA/BHA acid blend that helps dissolve dead skin cells that may be clogging your scalp, allowing full, healthy hair to grow.

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A Scalp Tonic
CAKE Restorative Scalp Tonic
Reverie sephora.com
$72.00

Oftentimes the cause of an itchy, red scalp is an unbalance of pH levels. This tonic gets everything back in order by rebalancing the scalp, and hydrates to prevent the onset of dandruff. Additionally, it promotes hair growth if you're manifesting longer locks for your future. 

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A Build-Up-Busting Shampoo
Flaky Scalp Cleansing Shampoo
Philip Kingsley
$39.00

As much as you might want to scratch your scalp, stop right there—this shampoo will do a much better job than your fingers. It exfoliates your scalp to free it from build-up, strengthens weak spots, and smells like sweet apples. What more could you want?

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A Charcoal Treatment
Scalp Revival Charcoal + Tea Tree Scalp Treatment
Briogeo sephora.com
$32.00

Charcoal is a natural detoxifier and tea tree is a natural healer. Together, these hero ingredients dissolve dead skin cells and soothe itchy, dry patches. This treatment will prime your scalp for optimal hair health.

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A Magic-Ingredient Shampoo
Serene Scalp Anti-dandruff Shampoo
Oribe dermstore.com
$46.00

Dry? Itchy? Irritated? Not anymore. This is the chic girl's answer to an anti-dandruff shampoo. Using the healing powers of salicylic acid and caffeine, your scalp will feel exfoliated and invigorated after experiencing this shampoo. 

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A Deep-Cleaning Scrub
Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt
Christophe Robin dermstore.com
$19.00

Even though you may think you wash out all your hair products every time, chances are, there's microscopic residue build-up that has the potential to clog your pores. This scalp scrub gives your scalp a deep-clean so that your hair can truly breathe. Plus, for those who worry about getting oily, this scrub works to rebalance your natural oil levels.

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A Leave-In Tonic
Revitalizing Hair and Scalp Tonic
Dr. Hauschka dermstore.com
$24.00

This leave-in tonic helps nourish your scalp and your hair strands with feel-good ingredients like antioxidants and essential oils that promote hair growth and prevent breakage. It works for both dry and oily scalps. 

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A Scalp Hydrator
Scalp Shampoo
SACHAJUAN amazon.com
$28.00

This shampoo utilizes salicylic acid to shed dead skin cells that are clogging scalp's pores while causing dryness and discomfort. Additional ingredients help rehydrate dry patches and soothe irritation. Plus, it's worth noting the sleek bottle will look beautiful in your shower.

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An Exfoliating Lotion
Lotion P50 Capillaire
Biologique Recherche brspa.us
$108.00

Just like P50 Lotion works wonder for your face, this version does the same for your scalp. It exfoliates like no other, getting rid of flakiness and promotes a healthy base for your hair to grow.

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A Derm-Approved Shampoo
SA Scalp Therapy Shampoo
Dermatologic Cosmetic Laboratories dermstore.com
$35.00

This dermatologist-approved shampoo is perfect to relieve the discomfort from itchy, uncomfortable scalps. It's also formulated for psoriosis and eczema, as well as cases of dandruff and redness. Combining a blend of acids and essential oils this scalp-soother is safe enough for daily use. 

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An Anti-Itch Toner
Stimulating Scalp Toner
Philip Kingsley dermstore.com
$33.00

Not only does this hair toner help de-clog your scalp from excess oils, it's also anti-bacterial and anti-fungal for those with long-standing scalp issues. Witch hazel helps relieve itchiness and menthol stimulates the scalp and cools irritation.

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A Fan Favorite
Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Nizoral amazon.com
$17.17
$14.84 (14% off)

What this product lacks in packaging pizazz, it makes up for with an incredibly powerful flake-killing formula. I mean, 3,000 five-star reviews on Amazon don’t lie: This shampoo really works. It’s filled with 1 percent ketoconazole (the other holy grail in seb derm and dandruff treatments) to cut itching and flaking after just a few uses. 

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A Do-Everything Serum
Revitalizing Fortifying Serum for Scalp
Hair Rituel by Sisley nordstrom.com
$195.00

This scalp serum can be applied on dry or wet hair, and no rinse is necessary. It immediately soothes dryness and inflammation and improves the health of your scalp after each use. Also, hair health isn't excluded from this fortifying serum's benefits—so mermaid hair, here you come. Not to mention, it smells like an absolute dream.

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A Drugstore Shampoo
Derma Care Scalp Dryness & Itch Relief Anti Dandruff Shampoo
Dove Beauty target.com
$4.89

Yeah, yeah, there’s nothing sexy about dandruff shampoo, but who the hell cares if it stops your scalp itch and flakes fast? This drugstore favorite uses a high dose of pyrithione zinc (one of the best over-the-counter treatments for both dandruff and seb derm) to kill the fungus—sounds gross, but it’s just an overgrowth of yeast that we all have—without stripping your hair.

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A Calming Spray
SOS Serum with Peony
Klorane dermstore.com
$20.00

If your scalp is plain ol’ dry and itchy (with absolutely zero redness or flakes), try a calming spray, like this floral-scented formula from Klorane. It’s infused with peony extract (a natural anti-irritant) to calm irritation, plus menthol to temporarily neutralize itching, and, most importantly, a mix of glycerin and castor oil to hydrate your dry scalp and keep the moisture in.

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An Itch-Curbing Treatment
Restore Dry Scalp Treatment
Living Proof sephora.com
$32.00

This liquid-like gel uses hyaluronic acid that seeps over your scalp like a patch, trapping in moisture and releasing balancing and calming vitamin B3 throughout the day. In small-scale clinical studies, 92 percent of participants said the gel instantly soothed their scalps, which is a major win for anyone dealing with incessant itching.

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A Garlic Shampoo
Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Leonor Greyl amazon.com
$46.00

This French shampoo strips away impurities that may be messing with your scalp's natural balance. Garlic bulb (yes, garlic!!) increases blood-flow to your scalp which helps keep you hydrated while healing any irritated patches.

 

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