Cuero cabelludo seco: cómo identificarlo, causas y tratamientos

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Dry scalp is the result of severe dehydration. It is easy to confuse it with dandruff because it has similar symptoms, including flaking, but its treatment is different. In this note, we tell you the causes of dry scalp and how to treat it.

dry scalp
Heed the signals from your scalp. Credit: Rupert Laycock

One of the most common symptoms of a dry scalp is a feeling of tension. The scalp feels stiff, tight and limp, just as if it has been burned in the sun.

Another common symptom is an itchy scalp . If you feel that urge to scratch, even when you’re sleeping, it may be from a dry scalp. Irritation or redness when washing or combing hair are also part of this set of signs.

And finally, the flaking. Small, dry, white scales often come off when scratching or combing. Therefore, it is very easy to confuse a dry scalp with dandruff.

As we said, dry scalp can present a flaking similar to dandruff. In fact, dandruff is one of the consequences of a dry scalp. However, there is a difference between dandruff and dry scalp.

When we talk about dry hair, we refer to a severe dehydration problem derived from multiple factors linked to health and lifestyle. Instead, dandruff is a condition triggered by a bacterial and fungal reaction, by excess oiliness or lack of hydration.

dry scalp
Are you using the right products for your hair type? Credit: Rupert Laycock

There are many factors that can dry out the scalp. To easily identify and eradicate them, trichologists divide them into two groups: internal and external agents.

Internal causes

Internal causes are those that are related to the integral functioning of the body. Among the most common are:

  •  Physical or emotional stress .
  • Age.
  • Hormonal changes.
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Genetic predisposition.
  • Atopic dermatitis and psoriasis.

External causes

External factors, on the other hand, are related to adverse processes or conditions to which the scalp is directly subjected, including:

  • Discoloration and dyeing.
  • Excessive use of heat tools.
  • Environmental pollution.
  • Sudden changes in temperature between each season.
  • Use of unsuitable products and accessories.


Masks with natural ingredients are great allies to combat dry scalp and provide it with the hydration it needs. They can be incorporated into the care routine as a weekly treatment and even increased to twice a week. Of course, it is necessary to supplement with suitable products for daily washing.

Coconut oil

The coconut oil is rich in nutrients, vitamins and antioxidants natural moisturizing agent. Apply 3 or 4 drops of pure coconut oil and distribute it on the scalp, doing a capillary massage. You can even leave it on overnight. It not only fights dry scalp but also prevents the appearance of dandruff.

aloe vera

Aloe Vera , the gel of aloe vera , contains a lot of water, hence its moisturizing power. This natural ingredient helps to keep the natural oils of the scalp in their proper measure and, thus, end dryness. How to use it? I extracted the pulp of the aloe vera leaf, mix it in a bowl with a little treatment cream, the one of your preference. Apply the mixture evenly over the entire head (important: pay special attention to the scalp). Let it act for 15 minutes and rinse.


The avocado in the hair provides its natural oils to nourish, revitalize the hair and protect it from hair loss. I extracted the pulp from a ripe avocado, tread it and mix it with two tablespoons of olive oil. Before applying it, I moistened the hair. In doing so, do a hair massage. Leave on for 15 minutes and rinse with plenty of warm water.


We all know the benefits of the banana. But few know what a banana hair mask can do. End of the mystery: it is a deep moisturizer. In fact, it also works as a natural conditioner. To make the mask, you have to mix two ripe bananas, three tablespoons of honey, 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and two tablespoons of non-dairy milk, whichever you have. You can also add a little water to dilute if you think it’s necessary. Apply to all hair and leave on for 30 minutes. Rinse with plenty of water and wash as usual.


To combat dry scalp from washing, I chose a moisturizing system, formulated with natural oils.

Paso 1

Dove Shampoo Óleo Nutrición

Dove Shampoo Óleo Nutrición

Products formulated with natural oils are a big yes when it comes to choosing a shampoo for dry scalp. This is the case with Dove’s Oil Nutrition Shampoo , designed exclusively for dry hair. With frequent use, it deeply nourishes, leaving hair soft, silky and docile. To see full results, use Dove Oil Nutrition Conditioner as well .

Paso 2

Sedal Shampoo Bomba Coco

Sedal Shampoo Bomba Coco

We already saw that coconut oil is a great moisturizer. Therefore, a product that contains it in its formula is a good way to provide hydration to the hair during washing. The Bomba Coco de Sedal Shampoo provides intense nutrition, just what dry, dull and lifeless hair needs. It works in conjunction with Bomba Coco de Sedal Conditioner .

Paso 3

Dove Shampoo Nutrición Óleo Micelar

Dove Shampoo Nutrición Óleo Micelar

Another shampoo option for dry scalp is Dove Oil Micellar Nutrition Shampoo , which not only gently cleanses but also progressively nourishes thanks to its lightweight formula with Nutri-Oils. It was specially designed for extremely brittle and dry hair. Complete the wash with Dove Oil Micellar Nutrition Conditioner .

Paso 4

TRESemmé Shampoo Hidratación Profunda

TRESemmé Shampoo Hidratación Profunda

The Shampoo TRESemmé Deep Hydration is formulated with panthenol and aloe vera, a natural moisturizing agent. This shampoo suitable for all hair types, which is complemented with the TRESemmé Deep Hydration Conditioner , not only hydrates but also restores the softness of the strands. And it does so with a very light micellar formula that does not weigh down hair.

  • Pay attention to the water temperature when washing your hair. Very hot water tends to dry out. So, regulate the temperature and I preferred to rinse with warm to cold water.
  • Try spacing out the washes. Give your scalp time to lubricate with the natural oils it produces.
  • Give heat tools like a hair dryer, flat iron, and curling iron a break. In case of using them, again, regulate the temperature so that it does not burn or damage your hair.
  • Make sure to wash your hair well to get rid of any residue that may accumulate on the scalp. We are talking about styling products but also about dead cells, sweat, pollution … These could be congesting your scalp and preventing its proper oxygenation. To avoid this, opt for products whose formulas contain purifying ingredients for effective cleaning.
  • Do hair massages regularly to promote blood circulation to the scalp. This will also facilitate the correct oxygenation of the scalp. You can do this using a few drops of castor oil . Important: use your fingertips, not your nails, to avoid damaging the skin.
  • Pay attention to your diet. Your skin, including that of your scalp, is a reflection of your diet. Make sure you eat foods rich in vitamin E, D, omega 3 and biotin , as well as hydrate yourself.


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