Dandruff shampoo for 4c hair
Today I want to touch on a more delicate subject – dandruff.
As a child, I used to suffer from eczema. Luckily when I got older it got better and my skin is now more or less the regular mixed oily skin type.
But whenever I’m in a cold place, my skin still tends to dry out a lot. On my face, they look like dry patches, but on my head my dry scalp flakes resulting in dandruff.
And that is not fun. Especially, when I have my hair in braids or another scalp-revealing protective style.
This is why during the winter season, I always have to take good care of my scalp health to avoid dandruff. And I know for a fact I’m not alone in this.
So I figured, today I’d share which dandruff shampoo for 4c hair can help you battle your scalp conditions.
What is dandruff?
Dandruff is a common scalp condition where flakes of dead skin cells appear on your scalp and in your hair. This condition does affect people with all hair types. However, due to the nature of the 4c hair type requiring more moisture, we may experience it more frequently than our peers.
Dandruff is caused by a variety of factors, like dry skin, sensitivity or allergic reactions to hair care products, as well as skin conditions such as psoriasis or seborrheic dermatitis.
Common symptoms of dandruff include white or grayish flakes of skin on the scalp, itching or irritation of the scalp, and in some cases, redness or inflammation of the scalp.
It will make your scalp feel dry and itchy, which then leads to scratching, more irritation, and in some cases even hair loss.
The worst dandruff I have ever seen on my own head was back in 2018 when I developed an allergy to castor oil. That was a very sad day lol. But it also was the start of my 4c hair journey, so I guess something good came out of it lol.
What causes dandruff in 4c hair?
As mentioned above, dandruff is not specific to any hair type. Meaning what causes dandruff in 4c hair is the same as in 4a and 4b hair types. Here are some of the common reasons for dandruff in 4c hair:
- Dryness: 4c hair is naturally prone to dryness because of its tightly coiled natural hair structure, which can make it difficult for its natural oil to travel down the hair shaft. And dryness is known to contribute to the development of dandruff.
- Irritation: Your scalp can become irritated because of different reasons, such as tight hairstyles, overbrushing your hair, or pressure from hats and other headwear. That friction and irritation can lead to the development of dandruff.
- Sensitivity to hair care products: Like my castor oil allergy, you may be sensitive to some of the natural ingredients you use in your natural hair regimen. This can cause contact dermatitis which is a rash that causes an itchy scalp and redness.
As you can see, in general, the causes of dandruff in 4c hair are not too complicated. But sometimes you might be experiencing severe dandruff which is not fun at all.
Why does my 4c hair have so much dandruff?
If your 4c hair has a lot of dandruff then you may be suffering from excessive dandruff in 4c hair, caused by factors linked to hormonal imbalances, and others. Here are some common reasons for severe dandruff in 4c hair:
- Yeast overgrowth: I know this sounds nasty, but there is a type of yeast called Malassezia which is naturally present on our scalp. However, in some cases, it can overgrow and cause dandruff. This overgrowth may be caused by stress, hormones, or a weak immune system.
- Seborrheic dermatitis: The last cause is a more severe form of dandruff that is characterized by red, inflamed skin and oily, yellowish flakes. This one is believed to be caused by a combination of things, such as genetics, hormones, and the overgrowth of yeast on the scalp.
- Poor hair hygiene: This one should be obvious but if you don’t wash your hair and scalp regularly it can lead to the buildup of oils, dirt, and dead skin cells. And all that can contribute to dandruff and result in a flaky scalp.
While dandruff is harmless and not contagious, it is definitely irritating and uncomfortable because it affects your appearance. Therefore, if you have excessive dandruff in your 4c hair, it’s important to take steps to address the underlying causes to improve the health of your scalp,
How do you get rid of dandruff on 4c hair?
In order to get rid of dandruff on 4c hair you need to first understand the reason why you have dandruff and then address it.
Whether it’s stubborn dandruff caused by skin conditions such as scalp psoriasis or health-related issues, or a simple outbreak. The following steps can help eliminate dandruff on 4c hair:
1. Use anti-dandruff shampoo or anti-fungal shampoos
Dandruff shampoos or shampoos with anti-fungal properties are specially formulated to target the yeast on your scalp that can contribute to dandruff.
Here you want to look for a shampoo that contains an active ingredient such as zinc pyrithione, salicylic acid, or selenium sulfide, and use it as directed. If the commercial dandruff shampoos don’t help, it may be time to get a medicated shampoo.
2. Moisturize your scalp and hair
Dryness is a common cause of dandruff, so it’s important to keep your scalp and hair well moisturized, even outside of your regular wash day.
Increase how often you use a leave-in conditioner and consider incorporating the LOC method into your hair care routine. Be sure to avoid products that contain alcohol, as these can further dry out your hair.
3. Avoid tight hairstyles
It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of low-manipulation hairstyles. And here is another good reason why.
Hairstyles that are too tight such as braids, cornrows, or weaves can put tension on your scalp and contribute to the development of dandruff. Avoid getting them too tight or consider taking a break for a while to allow your scalp to breathe.
4. Practice good hair hygiene
Keeping your scalp clean is essential for preventing dandruff. Be sure to wash your 4c hair regularly, but don’t overdo it as this can strip your hair of its natural oils.
Use a gentle shampoo and be sure to rinse thoroughly to remove all product buildup.
5. Maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle
A lot of stress, a poor diet, and a lack of sleep can all aggravate or worse the development of dandruff. So make sure to get enough rest, exercise regularly, and eat a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables.
If your dandruff persists despite these efforts, it may be time to seek treatment from a dermatologist or other healthcare provider. They will know about the best shampoos for your condition which can help eliminate dandruff on your 4c hair.
What can I use for dandruff on 4c hair?
Thankfully there are many ingredients and products you can use for dandruff on 4c hair. Either natural remedies that you may already have in your home.
Or specific products that help manage dandruff on 4c hair. Here are some of the most promising ones:
- Baking soda is a natural exfoliant that can help remove excess skin and oil on our scalp thus reducing dandruff. In addition, it also possesses antifungal properties that can help fight dandruff.
- Apple Cider Vinegar is known to kill fungi and bacteria that may lead to scalp problems such as dandruff, thanks to its disinfectant properties as well as its ability to balance the PH of your scalp.
- Aloe Vera is one of my favorite home remedies. The amino acids and antioxidants in the plant can help reduce dandruff caused by an itchy scalp and dryness.
- Different essential oils, such as tea tree oil, peppermint oil, or jojoba oil can help moisturize and soothe your scalp. They include anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties, which reduce dryness and flaking.
- Lastly, you can use special hair products such as dandruff shampoo. But you can also look for a leave-in conditioner that contains effective ingredients such as aloe vera extract, coconut oil, or shea butter. That can help add moisture to your hair and scalp, because of its moisturizing properties.
Now that you know about some of the natural remedies you can use for dandruff. Let’s take a look at the commercial anti-dandruff shampoos.
Best dandruff shampoo for 4c hair
I researched five different shampoos and came to the conclusion that the best dandruff shampoo for 4c hair is the As I Am Dry & Itchy Scalp Care Shampoo.
While it is not a medicated shampoo it is specifically formulated for black women with dry and itchy scalps. So, it contains 1 percent pyrithione zinc, which helps relieve dandruff, itching, and irritation but simultaneously also moisturizes and detangles your hair.
So, if you are experiencing mild dandruff and looking for a less invasive product, then this anti-dandruff shampoo is a great and effective solution. You can check it out on Amazon here.
Other dandruff shampoos for 4c hair:
- Head & Shoulders Clinical Strength Shampoo: This shampoo contains 1% pyrithione zinc and is specifically formulated to treat severe dandruff and scalp conditions.
- Nizoral Anti-Dandruff Shampoo: This shampoo contains 1% ketoconazole and is effective at treating dandruff caused by fungal infections.
- SheaMoisture African Black Soap Deep Cleansing Shampoo: This shampoo contains tea tree oil and willow bark extract, which are natural antifungal and antibacterial agents that can help soothe and heal the scalp.
- Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo: This shampoo contains 1% coal tar and is effective at treating dandruff, psoriasis, and seborrheic dermatitis.
Does head and Shoulders work on African American hair?
Yes, Head and Shoulders works on African American hair. And I did mention it as an option on the list above. Their shampoos contain all the important active ingredients for targeting the yeast that can contribute to dandruff.
While Head and Shoulders is not specifically designed for African American hair, it can be used on all hair types, including natural 4c hair.
The reason for that is that medicated dandruff shampoos work the same for everyone. However, because our hair type is more prone to dryness it’s important to limit the use to one time per week only and focus the application on your scalp and not your hair.
So, if you’re experiencing dandruff on your African American hair and are considering using Head and Shoulders, it’s a good idea to start with a small amount and monitor how your scalp and hair respond.
Use the shampoo as directed and give it time to work, as it may take several weeks of consistent use to see results. If you experience any irritation or adverse reactions, discontinue use and consult with a dermatologist or other healthcare provider for more guidance.