Product Review: KeraCare Dry & Itchy Scalp Shampoo

I’ve been in search of a shampoo that will clean my scalp and relieve itching, all while keeping my hair moisturized.

Background of scalp condition

Ever since I was in middle school, my scalp has occasionally itched severely, flaked severely, and become very sensitive. But over the past year, those symptoms seemed to happen much more frequently, and not go away. So I began using shampoos like T-Gel Medicated Shampoo and Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle Shampoo to focus on the flaking and/or the itching. I gave both a break because T-Gel severely dried out my hair, and Trader Joe’s left my hair feeling really gummy.

I was diagnosed with a minor skin condition a couple of months ago, and my dermatologist recommended KeraCare Dry & Itchy Scalp Shampoo. She said it should relieve the itching without overly drying my hair (she’s team natural as well :)), so I gave it a shot.

KeraCare Dry & Itchy Scalp used to be my go-to shampoo and conditioner when I was relaxed, and for a little while during my transition. It has always relieved my itchy scalp, but as I transitioned to natural, I didn’t like how dry it left my hair. Grant it, I still had a lot to learn about taking care of my natural hair, and this is why I decided to give it another go.

KeraCare Dry & Itchy Scalp Shampoo Review

What I liked:

  • My scalp felt very clean after the wash session
  • My hair definitely did not feel as dry as when I used the T-Gel shampoo, and it did not feel gummy at all.
  • I’m a sucker for a good smelling product. I dreaded using T-Gel every week because of the smell.
  • The tingling wasn’t too overpowering. I love the tingle of Trader Joe’s shampoo (and I still use the conditioner), but sometimes it feels like my scalp and face are on fire!

What I disliked:

  • I admit that my hair was not as dry as when using T-Gel, but it still felt too dry for my liking. I tried to overcompensate with my product layering while my hair is drying (leave-in, oil, heavy cream), but may hair never seems to recoup from these harsh wash sessions until the next night when I layer product again.
  • The above complaint is my only true dislike. If I had to pick another, the texture is a little gummy. It’s one of those consistencies that you have to rub in your hands for a while before you apply to your hair, or else a glob of it will fall to the shower floor. Clearly not a deal breaker, but just something I noticed :).

Will I use again?

I plan to use again until I gather all the necessary ingredients (& time!) for my first clay wash. HeyNaturalBeauties turned me onto this, and it really sounds like something that will cleanse my sensitive scalp while keeping my hair moisturized. Those who have followed me for a while know that I have stayed away from making my own concoctions, but this sounds worth the time, effort, and risks :).

Stay tuned!



Battling Dry/Itchy Scalp

I have definitely had my share of dry and itchy scalp since transitioning from relaxed to natural hair. In my experience, itchy scalp has been caused by dry scalp and/or product/dirt build-up. So there are 4 things I focus on to combat it, and I thought it would be helpful to share.

1. Shampoo-wash weekly (sulfate-free) – Focusing on my scalp. I strongly believe a clean scalp is one of the most important attributing factors to a healthy head of hair. This is why I personally struggle with methods that prolong time between shampoo-washes, or completely get rid of them altogether. If it works for you, awesome! But I know my scalp needs the actual cleansing agents in shampoos.

2. Misting scalp with water throughout the week – This is especially important for me as I workout 3 times per week. Having the salt/sweat build up on my scalp makes for some itchy days!

3. When conditioner-washing, keep the conditioner from touching the scalp – On shampoo wash days, I focus on my scalp. On conditioner-wash days, I focus on the length of my hair. It sounds small, but makes a huge difference. Conditioners have a lot of ingredients that coat (& condition) the hair but are not necessarily good for the scalp.

4. Keep your body hydrated – Of course staying hydrated internally will keep your scalp from getting dry.

Others have had success with oiling their scalp with light oils that serve less as barriers and are able to penetrate. Jojoba, Castor, and Olive oil are a few oils of choice. This method is especially good if your scalp does not produce enough of its natural oil.

So I am noticing that itchiness is becoming a problem for me again since the weather has gotten warmer. I imagine it is because of #2 and #4 above. When it’s over 90 degrees outside, you can start sweating just from walking from the parking lot into a building. I imagine my scalp is not as clean as it was in the cooler months. There is also a greater chance of getting dehydrated in the summer, so I do plan on increasing my water intake.

I hope this helps. Itchy scalp probably frustrates me the most (after tangles and knots)! 🙂

How do you combat dry and/or itchy scalp?