11 dandruff shampoos & scalp treatments to help you tackle dry flakes

PHOTO: Pexels

Hands up if every time you wear a dark dress or shirt you’re conscious about the flakes that might be seen on it. Those flakes are a symptom of having dandruff. And you’re not alone.

This common condition affects about half of the adult population, and the good news is that however problematic your dandruff issues are, dandruff shampoos and scalp treatments can go a long way in making a difference.

Dandruff may look different for different people: either it shows up as a flew flakes, or your scalp is always itchy and dry. It is usually caused by a high level of yeast on the skin that promotes inflammation, and it’s more likely to be found on oily scalps.

Even lifestyle factors like stress, irregular and poor shampooing habits, or certain spicy and sugar-intensive foods will increase the appearance of flakes. Either way, with the right regimen, it can be controlled effectively.

Here are 11 popular dandruff shampoos and scalp care products that can help balance the sebum levels on your scalp, exfoliate dead skin, and nourish the scalp.

1. Nizoral A-D hair shampoo, $48.90 

PHOTO: Lazada

If your dandruff problem is a stubborn and consistent one, this powerful clinical shampoo combines the effectiveness of Ketoconazole, an ingredient proven to combat dandruff, along with salon-tested gentleness for those whose scalps are more sensitive.

Even if your hair is colour-treated or chemically processed, this shampoo is gentle enough for regular use.

This shampoo helps control flaking, scaling, and itching and claims to start working from the very first use. Instead of solely addressing the symptoms of dandruff, this shampoo kills the fungus that causes it.

2. Christophe Robin purifying shampoo with jujube bark extract, $70 

PHOTO: Christophe Robin

Ideal for those with greasy roots and dry ends, this shampoo can be used daily to purify the scalp. Derived from jujube bark, this 100 per cent natural extract, and active ingredient helps to regulate excess sebum, minimise dandruff, and calm itchiness.

3. Redken scalp relief dandruff control shampoo, $28.75

PHOTO: Lazada

The Redken Scalp Relief Dandruff Control Shampoo uses pyrithione zinc to help combat and eliminate dandruff. Using its exclusive Interbond Scalp System and Hydro-Zone System technology, the shampoo delivers lavender extract and glycerin to soothe the scalp.

Use it daily if you need to, as it helps to clarify and bring relief to your hair while keeping it light and airy.

4. Drunk Elephant T.L.C. happi scalp scrub, $52 

PHOTO: Drunk Elephant

A scalp scrub for the senses, this Drunk Elephant product uses a stable and powerful blend of AHA and BHA acids to break down dead skin cells and product buildup.

Biodegradable and gentle plant cellulose exfoliating beads help scrub away the gunk effectively and keep the scalp nourished and flake-free.

Simultaneously a blend of plant oils like marula, baobab, and maracuja, that are rich in fatty acids, help keep the scalp balanced. For this product, in particular, leave it on your scalp for five to 10 minutes (and no longer than that), and massage it gently before rinsing it off.

5.Living Proof restore dry scalp treatment, $47 

PHOTO: Living Proof

This leave-in scalp treatment focuses on bringing hydration and relief from dry scalp symptoms like flaking, itching, or irritation. Using a vitamin B3-based microbiome-balancing complex, it restores equilibrium to the scalp’s natural ecosystem to bring relief that will last beyond a wash.

It’s also free of silicone, parabens, phthalates, cruelty-free, and colour safe.

6. Aveda pramasana protective scalp concentrate, $83

PHOTO: Aveda

This lightweight leave-in serum easily penetrates past the surface layers of the scalp to nourish and protect the scalp. It also helps to balance and maintain the sebum levels across the scalp.

Using a blend of seaweed extract, lactobacillus, and tamanu oil, the scalp is left feeling nourished, soothed, and comfortable.

7. Briogeo scalp revival charcoal + tea tree scalp treatment serum, $49 

PHOTO: Briogeo

A treatment that can be done outside of a wash, this Briogeo Scalp Revival can find its way in your routine after washing and before you style it. Just part the hair into sections and apply one to two drops to each partition before massaging it thoroughly into the scalp.

Using Binchotan charcoal, this treatment helps to draw out impurities from the scalp and remove any build-up to provide a clean and healthy foundation for your scalp (and hair).

The cooling blend of peppermint and spearmint oils will help reduce any itchiness, and the tea tree oil reduces scalp irritation and inflammation.

8. Gallinée Soothing Hair Cleansing Cream, $41 

PHOTO: Gallinée

This non-foaming cleansing cream is 100 per cent natural and derived from coconut and fruit sugars. Using lactic acid, a gentle AHA, it helps the skin stay at an optimal pH level with its hydrating and softening benefits. It is also enhanced with mafura oil, a soothing oil that moisturises the scalp deeply.

This cream will help leave the hair feeling healthy and shiny and keep the scalp balanced so as to prevent itchiness, dandruff, and even hair loss.

9. RYO Hair Loss Care Scalp Scaler, $19.90 


This gentle and mild formula deeply and effectively cleanses the pores to soothe the scalp and strengthen the hair from the roots. It helps exfoliate and clear dead skin from the surface of the scalp while removing excess sebum.

The formulation also soothes and cools the scalp with the combination of chestnut extract and natural mint oil, and on top of all this, the ginseng plant extract helps to nourish and strengthen the hair roots.

Simply use it twice a week at the start of your routine, before you shampoo, just wet your hair slightly and apply it along the scalp before massaging it in for one to two minutes.

10. Sukin oil balancing shampoo, $36  

PHOTO: Sukin

For those who struggle with an oily roots, this shampoo helps balance excess sebum without drying the scalp using its infusion of jojoba oil. It’s also free from sulphates, silicones, and harsh chemicals that can strip the hair of its natural oils.

Enhanced with moringa extract, it cleanses and purifies the scalp while the citrus and spearmint scents help rejuvenate the senses.

11. PHS Hairscience ADV soothe plus shampoo, $54 


Ideal for those with a dry or hypersensitive scalp, this shampoo is ultra-gentle as it uses a hypoallergenic formula that contains no harmful additives.

Deeply moisturising and nourishing, this scalp cleanser helps bring long-term relief to itchiness and dryness while strengthening the scalp’s natural resistance and defence.

This article was first published in The Singapore Women’s Weekly.