When it comes to washing your hair, there have never been so many choices to make, particularly in relation to your chosen shampoo. With ample brands offering all sorts of different things for hair, and making numerous claims, it can be hard to know where to start.
Surprised? I don't blame you. With so many incredible trending hair brands (Oribe, Ouai, and Sam McKnight, I'm looking at you), it seems unlikely that the country's bestselling shampoo overall is one that caters traditionally to those with dandruff, and feels so, well, basic.
If you do suffer from dandruff, however, this is of course a brilliant option. But if you feel you need more information about dandruff, or want to shop around for some more options, keep reading for a comprehensive yet snappy guide.
Dandruff is an incredibly common condition, but it is often misunderstood. So what exactly is it? “Dandruff is caused by an overgrowth of a yeast naturally found on the scalp, called Malassezia furfur,” explains Anabel Kingsley, Trichologist at Philip Kingsley. “When levels rise (which is commonly due to stress and hormones), skin cells on the scalp divide too rapidly. Cells are replaced much faster than they can be shed, leading to a buildup of telltale flakes and itching.”
“It happens when the skin cells are not turning over properly, and dead skin gets stuck on the scalp,” says Philip Berkovitz, hair stylist and founder of haircare brand Philip B. Dandruff itself can be caused by things like psoriasis, eczema, contact dermatitis, and often, seborrhoeic dermatitis, which is a common skin condition where there’s an overproduction of yeast.
The good news is that dandruff is not serious, and although it can be highly annoying and sometimes embarrassing, there are accessible courses of treatment. You do need to be persistent, however, especially if you’re suffering from stubborn dandruff.
“You need to treat dandruff consistently for best results,” explains Kingsley. She recommends using a daily shampoo containing anti-microbial actives such as Piroctone Olamine. “This ingredient specifically targets the yeast responsible for dandruff, and rebalances your scalp’s microflora.”