best shampoos for dry itchy scalp

9 Best Shampoos For Dry Itchy Scalp 2024: Recommended By Dermatologists

Are you struggling with a dry, flaky scalp? Our in-house GP Dr Adeela Anees and dermatologist Dr Swati M. recommend these best shampoos for dry itchy scalp, backed by medical research.

In This Article:

  1. Top Shampoos For Dry Itchy Scalp 2024
  2. Pros And Cons Of Shampoos
  3. How to choose the best shampoo for dry, itchy scalp?
  4. Causes, Prevention and Treatment Of Dry Itchy Scalp
  5. Why You Should Trust Haireveryday?

Having a dry, flaky scalp can be frustrating and uncomfortable. It can also lead to dandruff and hair loss. If you’re looking for the best shampoo to help relieve your dry scalp, you’re in luck.

We’ve consulted with our in-house GP Dr Adeela Anees and dermatologist Dr Swati M. to compile a list of the most effective shampoos for dry scalp, backed by medical research.

In this article, we’ll discuss the causes of dry scalp and recommend the best shampoos for different scalp types and concerns. We’ll also provide tips on how to use shampoo to soothe and moisturize your scalp.

Best Shampoos for Dry Scalp: Quick Summary

Best Shampoo for Dry Scalp
Best For Dry, Dandruff-Prone Scalp: Videri Lemon Sage & Tea Tree Shampoo
Best For Normal to Dry Hair: OGX nourishing coconut milk shampoo
Best For Inflamed Scalp: BodyShop Ginger Scalp Care Shampoo
Best For Curly Hair and Dry Scalp: Shea Moisture Hydrate and Repair Shampoo
Best Natural Shampoo: Khadi Natural amla and Bringaraj hair cleanser shampoo
Best Colored Hair: Wow Skin Science Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo
Best For Severe Dandruff: Head&Shoulders Scalp Elixir Treatments
Best For Psoriasis and Dry Scalp: Aveeno Skin Relief Soothing Shampoo
Best For Dry Scalp and Flakes: Dove Dermacare Scalp Anti-dandruff shampoo
Best For Redness and Itchiness: Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Oil Shampoo

Top Shampoos For Dry Itchy Scalp 2024

Videri Lemon Sage & Tea Tree Shampoo

Best Sulfate-Free Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp

best shampoo for dry, itchy scalp

So I was glad to have found the Videri Lemon Sage & Tea Tree Shampoo. It’s sulfate-free shampoo that helps me remove all the flaky residue without stripping my scalp off its moisture. It’s a good anti dandruff shampoo as well!

The redness was reduced considerably and the flaky residue on my scalp was gone like that!

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There’s aloe vera and jojoba seed oil in it, so you can be assured your scalp will get moisturized but won’t get too clogged up either!

As for the drawbacks of the shampoo, I noticed it was perfect for my wavy hair texture. However, I do feel it might not be as adequately moisturizing for type 4 or African American hair type.

Pros:

  • The shampoo is sulfate-free so it’s okay to use it on color-treated hair
  • The tea tree oil in the shampoo helps control scalp inflammation (Carson, C F et al. “Melaleuca alternifolia (Tea Tree) oil: a review of antimicrobial and other medicinal properties.” Clinical microbiology reviews vol. 19,1 (2006): 50-62. doi:10.1128/CMR.19.1.50-62.2006)
  • Lemon and sage extracts in the formula help remove flaky residue from scalp

Cons:

  • It doesn’t have a lot of smoothening agents so it won’t do a lot for African American hair

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 3.5/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 5/5
  • Gentleness – 4.5/5

Who It’s For – Flaky, inflamed scalp

Related: Why Does My Hair Fall Out When I Massage My Scalp

OGX nourishing coconut milk shampoo

Best Drugstore Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp

OGX shampoos for dry scalp

The Body Shop Ginger Scalp Care Shampoo is a good choice for people with oily scalps and dandruff. It is gentle on the scalp and hair, and it can help to cleanse and soothe the scalp, while removing flakes.

It is sulfate-free, paraben-free, and silicone-free, so it is less likely to irritate the scalp or damage the hair.

However, it is important to note that it is not a miracle cure for all scalp problems. If you have severe dandruff or other scalp conditions, you may need to see a dermatologist for prescription medication.

OGX Nourishing Coconut Milk Shampoo is also a good choice for people with sensitive scalps.

Pros:

  • The shampoo works well with most hair textures (curly, wavy, Afro)
  • It’s more affordable than other products I’ve reviewed here
  • Good for frizzy, dry hair as it smoothens the strands

Cons:

  • It might not suit very sensitive scalps as it has alcohol and perfume
  • I noticed it dried out my hair on prolonged use

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 4/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 3/5
  • Gentleness – 4/5

Who It’s For – Normal to dry scalp

Bodyshop Ginger Scalp Care Shampoo

Best Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp Sulfate Free

best shampoo for itchy scalp 2024

The Body Shop Ginger Scalp Care Shampoo is an effective and gentle shampoo that reduces dandruff and flakiness, soothes and nourishes the scalp, and strengthens and nourishes the hair. It is made with 90% ingredients of natural origin and is vegan and cruelty-free.

Overall, I highly recommend The Body Shop Ginger Scalp Care Shampoo to anyone with a dry, flaky scalp. It is an effective and gentle shampoo that leaves the hair feeling soft, healthy, and dandruff-free.

Pros:

  • It has a cruelty-free and is made using eco-friendly manufacturing processes
  • It suits scalps with heavy inflammation issues and psoriasis

Cons:

  • The ginger scent is not for everyone and is very overpowering
  • The formula isn’t moisturing enough for curly hair textures.

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 3/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 5/5
  • Gentleness – 4/5

Who It’s For – Oily hair with scalp inflammation

Related: Should I Use T Gel Or T Sal Shampoo

Shea Moisture Hydrate and Repair Shampoo

Best Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp Natural Hair

best shampoo for a dry itchy scalp

Shea Moisture Hydrate & Repair Shampoo is a popular choice for people with dry, damaged, or curly hair. It is formulated with Manuka honey and yogurt extract, which are both known for their hydrating and nourishing properties.

The shampoo also contains SheaMoisture’s Certified Organic Fair Trade Shea Butter, which helps to soften and smooth the hair.

How to use: Apply to wet hair, gently massage and work into a rich lather. Rinse thoroughly.

Pros:

  • The brand uses only organic, fair-trade ingredients
  • It repairs hair damage along with moisturizing hair
  • Good for curly, kinky hair textures as it has a very nourishing formula

Cons:

  • The perfume in the shampoo is too strong and can irritate very sensitive skin
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My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 5/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 4/5
  • Gentleness – 4/5

Who It’s For – Curly hair with dry scalp

Khadi Natural Amla and Bringaraj hair cleanser 

Best Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp And Color Treated Hair

khadi shampoo for  dry scalp

Khadi Natural Amla and Bringaraj hair cleanser is a popular Ayurvedic hair cleanser that is known for its many benefits, including:

  • Controlling dandruff and hair fall: Amla and bhringraj are both known for their ability to reduce hair fall and promote hair growth. They also help to keep the scalp healthy and free of dandruff.
  • Reducing scalp irritation: The cleanser is also effective in reducing scalp irritation and itchiness. This is because it contains natural ingredients that are gentle on the scalp.
  • Nourishing and strengthening the hair: The cleanser contains a variety of nutrients that nourish and strengthen the hair. This makes the hair look and feel healthier, shinier, and more manageable.

Overall, Khadi Natural Amla and Bringaraj hair cleanser is a good choice for people who are looking for a natural and effective way to cleanse their hair and scalp. It is also suitable for all hair types.

How to use: Apply on wet hair. Massage over scalp and hair lengths and rinse off.

Pros:

  • Good for sensitive scalp are the formula is 100 percent natural
  • There is no perfume as the scent is essential oil-based fragrance
  • Good for cleansing build-up and flakes from scalp.

Cons:

  • It’s very expensive compared to the others on this list
  • It doesn’t moisturize hair well and can increase frizziness
  • Certain ingredients are allergens so there is a chance of reaction

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 3/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 4.5/5
  • Gentleness – 3.5/5

Who It’s For – Oily hair with sensitive scalp

Wow Skin Science Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo

Best Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp And Hair Loss

Wow Skin Science Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo

As a hair care expert, I recommend the WOW Skin Science Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo for its natural ingredients and benefits. It clarifies and cleanses the scalp, conditions and detangles hair, and is free of harsh chemicals.

In short, the WOW Skin Science Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo is a good choice for people with all hair types who are looking for a natural and effective shampoo.

How to use: Wet hair with lukewarm water. Take a small amount and massage until it lathers. Wash it off with plain water.

Pros:

  • Helps with hair loss as it has DHT blockers
  • The apple cider vinegar formula is good for removing product build-up
  • Good for sensitive scalp as it maintains pH balance

Cons:

  • It leaves hair frizzier than before

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 4/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 4.5/5
  • Gentleness – 4/5

Who It’s For – Dry scalp with product build-up

Head & Shoulders Scalp Elixir Treatment

Best Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp And Dandruff

best moisturizing shampoo for dry scalp

Head & Shoulders Scalp Elixir Treatment is a leave-in scalp treatment that effectively reduces dandruff and flakes, while also soothing and nourishing the scalp. It is formulated with a blend of royal oils and menthol, and is safe for use on all hair types.

How to use: Apply to wet hair and scalp. Massage gently and leave for 2 minutes, rinse thoroughly.

Pros:

  • Controls dandruff and flaking
  • Sulfate-free and alcohol-free
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • Can dry strands in the long run

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 4/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 4.5/5
  • Gentleness – 3.5/5

Who It’s For – Dry scalp with dandruff problem

Aveeno Skin Relief Soothing Shampoo

Best Natural Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp

best shampoo for sensitive scalp

Pros:

  • Leaves hair soft and smooth
  • Works well with most hair textures
  • Sulfate-free
  • Good for color treated hair

Cons:

  • Too strong perfume

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 4.5/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 3.5/5
  • Gentleness – 4.5/5

Who It’s For – Inflamed and flaky scalps

Dove Dermacare Scalp Anti-dandruff Shampoo

Best Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp And Oily Hair

best shampoo and conditioner for dry scalp

Pros:

  • Controls dandruff and flaking
  • pH balanced formula
  • Sulfate-free
  • Affordable
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Cons:

  • Smell not pleasant

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 4/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 3/5
  • Gentleness – 4/5

Who It’s For – Dry scalp and hair with mild dandruff

Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Oil Shampoo For Dry Scalp

Best Tea Tree Oil Shampoo For Dry Itchy Scalp

best shampoo for dry itchy scalp and oily hair

Pros:

  • Helps control scalp acne
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Controls excess oil
  • Pleasant smell

Cons:

  • Dispenser doesn’t work properly
  • Contains sulfates

My Ratings:

  • Moisturizing Power – 3/5
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties – 5/5
  • Gentleness – 3/5

Pros And Cons Of Shampoos

Shampoos For Dry Itchy ScalpsKey IngredientsProsCons
Videri Lemon Sage & Tea Tree ShampooLemon sage, tea tree oil, aloe vera, coconut oilCleanses scalp, removes dandruff, soothes inflammation, moisturizes hairMay be too drying for some hair types
OGX nourishing coconut milk shampooCoconut milk, coconut oil, argan oilMoisturizes hair, reduces frizz, strengthens hairMay not be effective enough for severe scalp conditions
BodyShop Ginger Scalp Care ShampooGinger, white willow bark, peppermint oilStimulates scalp circulation, reduces dandruff, soothes inflammationMay be too strong for sensitive skin
Shea Moisture Hydrate and Repair ShampooShea butter, coconut oil, argan oilMoisturizes hair, reduces frizz, repairs damageMay not be effective enough for severe scalp conditions
Khadi Natural amla and Bringaraj hair cleanser shampooAmla, bringaraj, aloe vera, coconut oilPromotes hair growth, reduces dandruff, soothes inflammationMay not be easy to find
Wow Skin Science Apple Cider Vinegar ShampooApple cider vinegar, argan oil, jojoba oilBalances scalp pH, removes dandruff, cleanses scalpMay be too strong for some hair types
Head&Shoulders Scalp Elixir TreatmentsPyrithione zinc, coconut oil, almond oilTreats dandruff, soothes inflammation, moisturizes hairMay not be effective for all types of dandruff
Aveeno Skin Relief Soothing ShampooColloidal oatmeal, aloe vera, chamomileSoothes inflammation, reduces itching, moisturizes hairMay not be effective enough for severe scalp conditions
Dove Dermacare Scalp Anti-dandruff shampooPyrithione zinc, niacinamide, hyaluronic acidTreats dandruff, soothes inflammation, moisturizes hairMay not be effective for all types of dandruff
Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Oil Shampoo for dry scalpTea tree oil, aloe vera, rosemaryCleanses scalp, removes dandruff, soothes inflammation, moisturizes hairMay be too drying for some hair types

How to choose the best shampoo for dry, itchy scalp?

If you have a dry scalp, you know how uncomfortable it can be. The itching, flaking, and tightness can make it difficult to enjoy your day. But the right shampoo can make a big difference in relieving these symptoms and keeping your scalp healthy.

Here are a few tips on how to choose the best shampoo for a dry scalp:

  • Look for a moisturizing shampoo. Shampoos that are specifically designed for dry scalps typically contain ingredients that help to add and retain moisture, such as shea butter, coconut oil, and hyaluronic acid.
  • Avoid shampoos with harsh chemicals. Sulfates and other harsh chemicals can strip your scalp of its natural oils, making dryness worse. Look for a shampoo that is sulfate-free and paraben-free.
  • Choose a shampoo with natural ingredients. Natural ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile, and oatmeal can help to soothe and moisturize a dry scalp.
  • Consider your hair type. If you have color-treated hair, for example, you’ll need to choose a shampoo that is safe for colored hair.
Best Moisturizing Shampoo for dry scalp

Causes, Prevention and Treatment Of Dry Itchy Scalp

We consulted our medical expert Dr Adeela Anees for to find out what causes dry scalps, how to avoid this skin condition, and what are the best cures for it. And here’s what I found!

Causes:

  • Dr. Anees defines dry, itchy, red patches on the scalp, face, and body as “seborrheic dermatitis, with dandruff as a milder variant.”
  • “This condition emerges due to inflammation in areas abundant in sebaceous glands.”
  • “It is likely associated with a yeast called Malassezia, which can be more prevalent or trigger sensitivity in some individuals.”
  • “Symptoms span from mild dandruff to extensive, itchy, inflamed skin.”
  • “Importantly, seborrheic dermatitis doesn’t induce hair loss, but it can make the scalp greasy, scaly, and irritated.”

Treatment:

  • According to Dr. Anees, “Medicated shampoos with ingredients like zinc pyrithione, salicylic acid, selenium sulfide, or ketoconazole are the way to go.”
  • She advises, “Leave the antifungal shampoo on for 5-10 minutes before rinsing.”
  • “Repeat the antifungal shampoo regimen twice a week for up to four weeks.”
  • For severe cases, she recommends, “Brief usage of corticosteroid gels or lotions, with guidance from a physician.”
  • Dr. Anees emphasizes the need to “manage stress and refrain from excessive scratching to prevent exacerbation of symptoms.”

Prevention:

  • Dr. Anees clarifies, “Dry scalps aren’t connected to diet or hygiene, but reducing sugar intake may be beneficial.”
  • She suggests, “A low-sugar, antioxidant-rich diet can effectively control dandruff flares.”
  • “To reduce flaking, restrict the consumption of fatty, fried, sugary, and processed foods.”
  • “Essential fatty acids, like omega-3 and omega-6, can support healthy skin and hair, although their direct impact on dandruff is inconclusive.”
  • “Zinc and biotin may assist in dandruff management and are present in various foods.”
  • Dr. Anees advises, “Consult a healthcare professional if dandruff persists or worsens, as it might indicate underlying issues.”

Why You Should Trust Haireveryday?

The author of this article, Leah Marie Priest has a degree in Cosmetology with years of experience in dealing with hair care, scalp care, and hairstyling. As someone who extensively deals with all kinds of hair textures, products, styling methods and more, hair Leah Marie knows what kind of products and procedures suit each hair type and person. We have also tested these hair products and processes ourselves to provide you an unbiased review about every product. Each of our articles are also reviewed by a team of medical professionals so that you get the most accurate and expert-reviewed information.

Also Read:

Head and Shoulders Scalp Elixir Treatment

The best shampoos for dry hair and itchy hair help control dandruff and flaking and leave hair hydrated. The Head and Shoulders Scalp Elixir Treatment is suitable for most hair types.

Product SKU: MLRH2OGI2B

Product Brand: Head and Shoulders

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: $6.99

Price Valid Until: 2025-09-16

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:
5

Pros

  • The shampoos moistures hair
  • The shampoo removes flakes from scalp
  • It helps control dandruff

Cons

  • The shampoo contains sulfates
  • It doesn't suit colored hair
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