Dandruff Vs Dry Scalp: The Real Difference Between Those Annoying White Flakes

Dandruff Vs Dry Scalp: The Real Difference Between Those Annoying White Flakes

One of the biggest hair woes most women experience during the monsoons is dandruff. The excessive humidity levels in the air cause bacteria and fungi on the scalp and that leads to itchiness. Another factor that causes the skin on the scalp to shed is called dry scalp. Although from afar, the two white flakes look similar, they differ in size and texture. Let's get to know more about dandruff and dry scalp today. 

The Key Difference Between Dry scalp And Dandruff


Before we answer that question, let's understand them as two different hair conditions. 

What is dry scalp?

Understanding what dry scalp means is simple. It means that your scalp lacks moisture. Because of this, your scalp becomes irritated, inflamed and itchy. A dry scalp is also an indication that other body parts like your elbows, arms, feet and legs are dry too. So, what is the cause of dry scalp? Multiple things tbh! Cold air, dermatitis, over-washing or age. Excessive product and dirt buildup trigger the scalp to shed dead skin. Although these dead skin flakes look like dandruff, they aren't. They're smaller and drier. Just to be sure, moisturise your scalp at night and wash your scalp in the morning. If it's dry scalp, the flakes will disappear after the wash. If not, it's dandruff for sure!


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What is dandruff?

Seborrheic dermatitis is responsible for dandruff. In fact, it is this condition that makes your scalp become oily, red and flaky. It causes the scalp to shed off white or yellow flakes known as dandruff. Unlike dry scalp, dandruff is caused due to fungal infection and requires treatment to go away. When you have dandruff, you will also notice a change in hair texture. The hair becomes greasy, dull and oily.

However, two similarities between dry scalp and dandruff are that both of them cause severe itchiness and irritation of the scalp. Scratching the scalp often can also cause sores and bleeding. Invest in a good quality anti-dandruff shampoo that contains salicylic acid, selenium sulfide, pyrithione zinc or ketoconazole or try home remedies like tea tree oil or apple cider vinegar to treat dandruff. If haircare products and home treatments don't work against dandruff and you continue to spot sores on the scalp, you must loop in your doctor ASAP. 


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Unfortunately, dandruff is not curable. If treated, it will occur again someday in the future. For dry scalp, avoid washing your hair with shampoo too often. Thrice a week should be more than enough. Also, do not expose your hair or scalp to the sun during peak UV ray hours (ie. 10 am - 4 pm)

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