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Most of us wouldn’t think twice about splashing out on a pricey anti-ageing cream to improve our complexions, but would we spend the same on scalp care?
The “skinc-hair” trend has seen the rise of deep cleansing and regenerating formulas to get the healthy hair and soothed scalps we all want. But if you’re wondering why your scalp is itchy in the first place – and exactly what products to use to stop it – we have the answers..
What does an unhealthy scalp look like?
You may notice sluggish hair growth, thinning locks, itchiness or flaking skin. “But what usually happens is people leave it until they notice their hair is really thin or they have bad dandruff, and THEN they go seek out help for the problem, instead of proactively looking after their scalps in the first place,” says Simone Thomas, trichologist at Simon Thomas Wellness.
What causes scalp itching specifically?
Being run down and stressed, having thyroid problems or a bad diet, certain medication and environmental changes can all cause an unhealthy scalp. “Also cheap, silicone-heavy products that cause an excessive build-up of product and block hair follicles can be to blame for itchiness and sluggish hair growth,” Simone adds.
What kinds of products should I be using to soothe the itch?
Simone says you’ll benefit hugely from a hair care range that uses higher concentrations of natural scalp-friendly ingredients. These can include coconut oil, which contains a host of hair-stimulating vitamins, and CBD to calm and provide anti-inflammatory action.
“Like you cleanse, tone, moisturise and treat the skin on your face, you should do the same for your scalp. That involves washing with a good shampoo, hydrating with a nourishing conditioner, and giving yourself regular massages to get the blood flow going,” she says.
Shop our pick of scalp-friendly beauty buys
Wild Science Lab Head First Scalp Relief Shampoo and Wild Science Lab Head Way Scalp Recovery Conditioner
The duo has a CBD-rich, calming and nourishing complex to help relieve inflammation and reduce itchiness. A full-size shampoo usually costs £24 and a conditioner £26, but you can get a deluxe travel size of both, PLUS three other brilliant beauty products when you buy the latest OK! Beauty Box.
The whole box is worth over £80, but new subscribers can it from just £4.50 here (usual monthly price of £15) by using the code 67FIRSTBOX at the checkout.
The INKEY List Glycolic Acid Exfoliating Scalp Scrub, £12.99 here
This gentle glycolic formula promises to help slough away dead skin cells and product residue that can cause itching. Use the tube-shaped applicator to apply over your scalp, then give yourself a quick massage before rinsing out and shampooing as normal.
Cantu Thick Boar Paddle Brush, £8.99 here
The bristles on this are designed to reach the scalp and help stimulate circulation. Since better circulation means healthier hair growth, you’ll see the benefit from brushing with this over time.
Philip Kingsley Flaky Itchy Scalp Toner, £22.50 here
The serum offers near-instant relief from an itchy scalp, and with repeat use it helps to prevent dandruff and a build-up of dead skin cells – both known causes of itchiness in the first place.
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