curl care header

flake off!

Is dandruff causing you embarrassment?

Those white flakes you see on your shoulders and in your hair may be dandruff or they may be the result of dry skin or even over-use of styling products. Check below to make sure you use the treatment that matches your problem.


SYMPTOMS: Greasy white or yellowish flakes in the hair and on the shoulders and an itchy, scaling, sometimes red scalp are the symptoms of dandruff. Dandruff, or seborrheic dermatitis of the scalp, is a condition characterized by accelerated cell turnover that results in shedding.

CAUSE: Although it is a common condition, the exact cause of dandruff isn't known. According the Mayo Clinic website (, several factors play a role: Increased oil (sebum) production in the scalp. People with an oily scalp and hair are more prone to dandruff.

An abnormal level of a yeast (a fungus called malassezia) that typically lives on the scalp without causing problems can cause irritation leading to increased cell turnover. A variety of other factors, including certain hormones, physical stress, fatigue, travel, change of season and illness can all trigger dandruff.

TREATMENT: While there is no cure for dandruff, it can usually be effectively controlled with over-the-counter dandruff shampoos and scalp treatments. These may include one of several proven active ingredients, such as:

Zinc pyrithione: Shampoos with the antibacterial and anti-fungal agent zinc pyrithione have been shown to reduce the fungus that causes dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis. Coal tar: Shampoos that contain coal tar, a by-product of the coal manufacturing process, help conditions such as dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis and psoriasis by slowing cell turnover.

Salicylic acid: Shampoos and scalp treatments that contain salicylic acid help eliminate scale, but they can leave your scalp dry. Use a moisturizing conditioner after shampooing to help counter dryness.

Ion Clear-T Anti-Dandruff Shampoo is a powerful dandruff-fighting medicated formula containing active coal tar. It controls itchy, flaky scalp associated with dandruff, psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis. This formula is designed for use on all hair types, but is not recommended for those with light-colored or highlighted hair since it can leave an orange tint.

Mane N Tail Dandruff Shampoo is safe for color-treated hair and contains the active ingredient pyrithione zinc to fight dandruff while gently cleansing and moisturizing both hair and scalp.

dry skin

SYMPTOMS: A mildly itchy scalp and small, dry, white flakes are indicative of a dry scalp. CAUSE: Dry scalp is most often experienced in winter due to exposure to dry indoor heat and dry outdoor cold. Anyone with generally dry skin may be more prone to having a dry scalp.

TREATMENT: To treat a dry scalp, use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner, as well as a leave-in conditioner, especially in winter.

L’Oreal Nature’s Therapy Scalp Relief Treatment Shampoo is a deep yet gentle cleansing shampoo that refreshes and moisturizes dry skin and helps relieve scalp tightness and itching.

hormones, physical stress, fatigue, travel, change of season and illness can all trigger dandruff.

L’Oreal Nature’s Therapy Scalp Relief Leave-in Treatment is a light-weight leave-in therapy that refreshes the scalp and controls dryness without leaving hair feeling heavy or greasy.

product overuse

SYMPTOMS: Occasional white flakes on shoulders.

CAUSE: If you overuse styling products, such as gels, mousses or sprays, you may experience white flakes that are simply the dried product shedding from your hair.

TREATMENT: To prevent styling products from flaking, use a smaller amount, a lighter formula or a different brand. To get rid of styling product buildup, use a clarifying shampoo once or twice a week.

Ion Clarifying Shampoo is a unique blend of ingredients and purifying botanicals that deeply cleanses hair to remove styling product buildup, chlorine, mineral residue and other impurities as it refreshes hair.