Your Shampoo May be Contributing to Chronic Dandruff

chronic dandruff

I have had an interesting history with chronic dandruff, and attempted dandruff control using a variety of shampoos, ever since I was a teenager. Today I am happy to say I live a shampoo-free life and my dandruff is finally gone! Why? Because shampoo was part of the problem! 

Chronic dandruff can be caused by a good number of things including dry skin (whether seasonal or chronic), a weak liver due to the liver-skin connection (causing skin sensitivities), dietary associations and/or complications, the shampoo you use, allergies to chemicals in hair products, psoriasis, eczema or other skin condition, a type of allergic reaction to one’s own skin oils, or other possibilities.

There are many reasons why you might have a dry scalp that is flaking, and itchy. It might behoove most people to check with their doctor as to why they might have chronic dandruff. Although there can be creams, tar-based or similar shampoos, other hair or skin products, oils, herbal remedies, over-the-counter medicines, or pharmaceuticals that might help, if the chronic dandruff has not gone away completely, there could be other underlying or hidden issues that could be the cause.

How I got rid of my chronic dandruff

In my early twenties I heard about someone who had stopped using shampoo altogether to get rid of their chronid dandruff, putting the blame on the agents and chemicals in the shampoos. I stopped cold turkey, and I can tell you that my hair got so greasy it was horrible! I wound up scrubbing my scalp with very hot water for a few minutes straight every single day to stave off of the excess oils that built up, but it only partially helped.

The problem of oily hair wasn’t the lack of shampoo, but the fact that I had gone so long using shampoos.

Shampoos are like soaps or detergents—they strip all the natural oils from your scalp and dry it out, which is why people have to use hair conditioner/crème rinse, to attempt replacing some of the moisture. This alone can cause chronic dandruff.

After a month of this, the oils finally started evening out, and coming back to normal levels. After a few months I was told my hair smelled “like strawberries” because my scalp was finally healthy, and not only excess-oil free, but also my chronic dandruff was gone!

An easier alternative to chronic dandruff than to quit using shampoos “cold turkey”

So today we have a lot more natural-based hair care products on the market than we did two decades ago. Wen is one of the popular ones that I used, but it is very expensive. There are non-name-brand copycat Wen-like products that honestly seem just as good as the more expensive version(s), and I have used them with glee. However, the key here is to notice that these products are NOT shampoos!

There are no cleaning agents or detergents or SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate, a foaming agent, which I discovered I am allergic to) in these natural hair products, and for someone with chronic dandruff like I had, you may also do much better on them.

Today I see no need (outside of not wanting to use chemical-based products AT ALL) to purchase super-expensive hair cleaning products for chronic dandruff issues. If it’s not convenient for me to get a better brand at the health food store I simply use good name-brand hair conditioners from any drugstore, either for sensitive skin, or for extra moisture, although any will do.

This way it is easy to purchase from just about any store, and you can take advantage of sales. I sometimes use Fructis, or Aussie, or Pantene, or whatever else. I just stay far away from cheap brands, like you would find at the dollar store. They are not conducive to hair health, scalp health, nor to helping chronic dandruff.

When you wash your hair daily, if you want to get rid of your chronic dandruff the way I did, just use the conditioner liberally each day as you would shampoo (but do NOT use shampoo!) and let it soak in for at least 2 minutes, scrub your scalp well, and rinse out. Your hair will smell and look fresh and clean, but your scalp will be a lot healthier and it should help take care of and to get rid of chronic dandruff!

After all, because I have eliminated all shampoos, today I can say I no longer have chronic dandruff… in fact, I am completely dandruff-free!

The author of this story is a freelance contributor to National Nutraceuticals’ online news portals, such as Amino Acid Information Center at and Vancouver Health News at  National Nutraceuticals, Inc. also owns and operates a third health news portal focusing on medicinal mushrooms at, plus our newest portal at

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