Your scalp is the gateway to healthy hair. Whatever your hair goals, without a healthy hair environment, you’re not going to get there. To get rid of dryness, dandruff, and product build-up, you need to spend time exfoliating your scalp. But you might be asking; How do I exfoliate my scalp? When do I exfoliate my scalp? And what’s better? Physical or chemical exfoliants?
We’re about to tell you everything there is to know and more, because after all, a healthy scalp = healthy hair.
Why should I exfoliate my scalp?
Let’s start with the basics. You might be reading this and thinking ‘Why should I exfoliate my scalp?’ — Well, let us tell you.
A healthy scalp creates a healthy hair environment, so whether you’re looking to achieve hair growth, thickness, or shine, then you need to address the root cause (pardon the pun). Exfoliating your scalp removes any dirt, impurities, product build-up, and dead skin cells that can prevent your hair from growing, weigh it down, make it greasy, or dull its shine.
Exfoliating your scalp encourages cell turnover and removes blockages around the hair follicles, stimulating regrowth, removing excess oils, and soothing any itchiness. Sold? We thought you might be.
When should I exfoliate my scalp?
Although massaging your scalp is safe enough to do every time you shower to increase blood flow and the efficacy of your products, exfoliating your scalp is more harsh so should be done less frequently. This avoids over-exfoliation, which can lead to dryness, flakiness, and irritation. We recommend exfoliating your scalp once a week or every two weeks, depending on the delicate microbiome of your scalp and how it reacts.
What should I exfoliate my scalp with?
There’s a whole range of scalp exfoliators out there, so you’re sure to find your fave. But which one should you choose?
Let’s start with textures. There are physical exfoliants and chemical exfoliants, which both have different textures. Physical exfoliants feature ingredients such as sugar, pumice, or coconut shells to physically scrub away impurities and build-up. These are often the most satisfying but can be a bit too abrasive if not used correctly and you scrub too hard.
Then there are chemical exfoliants, which use acids such as glycolic acid and salicylic acid to slough away dead skin cells and break down any impurities or oils. Chemical exfoliants are usually a liquid that you leave to sit on your hair for a certain amount of time before washing away.
In terms of which should you choose when considering physical vs. chemical exfoliants, it really is down to personal preference. Whichever you choose, slot it into your routine before you shampoo your hair, so you can make sure to remove all traces of the exfoliating product.
How do I exfoliate my scalp?
Step 1: Pick your favourite exfoliator (check out our faves below to add to your haul.
Step 2: Apply evenly on the scalp, following the instructions provided with your product. If you’re using a chemical exfoliant, leave it to sit on your hair. With a physical exfoliant, it’s time to get scrubbing.
Step 3: Rinse your hair thoroughly to remove the product.
Step 4: Follow with shampoo and conditioner as normal.
Step 5: Style your hair as you normally would.
Step 6: Enjoy your fresh, healthy, shiny hair!