Dandruff or Dry Scalp? Symptoms & Treatments For Your Hair

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Despite what a lot of people think, dandruff is not a condition caused by poor hygiene. While unclean hair may make dandruff more visible, it is not the cause and on its own, won’t get rid of it. The exact cause of dandruff is unknown, but there are things that can make it worse, and things you can do to make it better. We’re going to discuss here what dandruff is and how it is different to having a dry scalp, as well as what you can do to help prevent both conditions.

Dandruff vs Dry Skin – Which Do I Have?

Dandruff is not a symptom of dry skin (or lack of hygiene), as many would have you believe. They are two separate conditions which happen to have some similar symptoms which can make it difficult to determine which you have. In this article we’ll discuss both in detail and later talk about how you can help to treat these conditions.

Dry Scalp Symptoms

For those with a dry scalp, the skin becomes easily irritated through means like scratching or brushing and this causes skin to flake off, leaving flakes of skin in your hair. The same happens to those with dry skin on their hands, for instance, only the flakes of skin don’t have much hair to latch onto so it’s not as visible. The causes of dry scalp can vary but it occurs when the scalp doesn’t have enough moisture. This could be because a condition like contact dermatitis, or a reaction to products used on your hair, the temperature and atmosphere being too cold or dry, or even your age with those of an older age typically having dryer skin.


Dandruff Symptoms

Dandruff, on the other hand, is caused by too much oil on your scalp which causes your skin cells to build up and shed more quickly than usual. One of the most common causes is seborrheic dermatitis which leaves skin red and oily. It can also be caused by a build-up of Malassezia, a fungus which for some can cause skin cells to multiply too often.

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How To Tell The Difference Between A Dry Scalp And Dandruff

As we’ve already established, the main symptoms are mutual between the two which can make it difficult to tell them apart. Both lead to an itchy, uncomfortable scalp with visible flakes in the hair. For those with dandruff, however, the flakes are typically quite large and can be yellow or white, usually quite oily from the excess oil on your scalp. The skin can also present itself as red, oily and even scaly. Those with a dry scalp, however, will notice smaller, white flakes without excess oil on the scalp. It’s also possible that other areas of the body will be dry as well.

How Do I Treat Dandruff Or My Dry Scalp?

As these conditions are separate, they need to be treated differently. Fortunately, they are usually both quite easy and quick to treat.

Dry Scalp Treatment

To treat a dry scalp you need to give your skin more moisture. This often requires using a good shampoo or conditioner (or both) with ingredients designed to add moisture to your skin. Our 2% zinc pyrithione shampoo contains aloe vera which can work very well for this, but there are a number of over-the-counter products that are also easily accessible should you need them.

Dandruff Treatment

As with most conditions, some people might find different treatments, or a combination of treatments, more helpful. At Clever Soap, we specialize in products containing zinc pyrithione which can be highly-effective at tackling dandruff and reducing visible flakes. For many, a visible difference can be seen in a short period of time. As well as this, some people may also find that stress is a trigger of dandruff (and dermatitis), therefore finding ways to help manage your stress levels can have a positive impact on your symptoms.

The idea behind Clever Soap began back in 2009, although Ryan Clarke, only 15 at the time, hardly knew it. Like so many teenagers across the world, he’d developed a common skin condition known as acne. Already suffering with this skin condition for over 2 years, he’d tried just about everything you could get over the counter and at the pharmacy, along with various treatments prescribed to him by the G.P. Desperate to find something that could work, he decided to try and look online and see if other people had found something he had not. That’s when he discovered zinc pyrithione.

Zinc pyrithione was something Ryan had never heard of before, but people were talking about it on various forums like it was a miracle cure for acne. Many claimed it was the only thing that had worked for them after trying everything else, and that was more than enough to convince him he had to try it too. But where could he get some? Looking online for soap with zinc pyrithione yielded limited results, all with one problem in common. They had to be imported from abroad. This meant huge import fees and costs that were far too expensive to even consider. There was one alternative, as some people had mentioned, and that come in the form of shampoo. Certain shampoos contained zinc pyrithione and could be bought for a more reasonable price even at some local stores. Eager to try, Ryan found a shampoo and used it on his face, chest and back. He knew results wouldn’t be instant and was willing to wait weeks, even month to see results. But unfortunately, he couldn’t. Why? Because shampoo isn’t designed to be used on the skin like soap is, in fact it can be very harsh. And Ryan, with sensitive skin, found the shampoo was actually doing more harm than good, leaving his skin red and sore. With no alternatives, he gave up on.

Ryan eventually grow out of acne after around 6 years of dealing with all the negative impacts the skin condition can have, and after completing his Master Of Physics at Exeter University, he decided that people shouldn’t have to go through what he did and set upon making his own soap in the hopes of providing people with an effective bar of zinc pyrithione soap that can be readily obtained at a reasonable price for everyone. And so, after much trial and error and a lot of hard work, Clever Soap was born. With it came the first 2% zinc pyrithione soap that also had other ingredients to compliment it. These include natural oatmeal to help exfoliate and clean the skin, along with shea butter for its moisturizing properties. The soap is gentle on the skin and can be used even on those with more sensitive skin. Better still, it’s vegan-friendly.

People quickly started to try the soap and within days reviews were coming in, praising the product. Ryan understood the potential and also realised there was so much more he could do. Keeping the brand’s core beliefs at heart including ensuring all products are vegan-friendly and suitable for all skin types, sensitive or otherwise, he added more products to the range including zinc pyrithione shampoo bars, zinc pyrithione and salicylic acid soap bars and most recently, a liquid zinc pyrithione face wash.

So that’s the story of Clever Soap and its founder, Ryan Clarke. So what are you waiting for? Try some now for yourself and be prepared for healthy, beautifully soft skin.

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