OILY DANDRUFF: Best Treatment for Oily Dandruff On The Hair & Scalp

Oily Dandruff
Image credit: Head & Shoulders

Imagine going to a hair salon, having your hair done, and then, boom! Your hairstylist comes across your dandruff in your hair. Such an awkward moment, right? Oily dandruff is a skin condition that often affects the scalp, although it can also affect the brows, chest hair, genital region, and armpits. It produces itchy scalp skin, which is accompanied by particles of dead skin. Dandruff can be quite stubborn and tiring. However, a good shampoo can help cure oily dandruff when combined with another treatment.

According to the Journal of Clinical and Investigative Dermatology, it typically starts around the adolescent stage and ends around the age of 50. Meanwhile, all dandruff is not the same. Dandruff is categorized into two kinds: oily dandruff and dry dandruff.

The particles of oily dandruff are big, yellowish, and plaque-like. They have oily, yellowish patches on their scalp and hair that are stuck with them.

In this article, we will focus on oily dandruff and also look at the various treatments for this oily dandruff on your hair as well as the best shampoo used for an oily scalp. Keep reading!

Oily Dandruff

In as much as, everyone’s scalp produces oil, excessive production can lead to dandruff and other problems.

The sebaceous glands on the scalp produce sebum. This protects the scalp from dehydration and ecological damage. The sebaceous glands create too much sebum in an oily scalp. This allows bacteria and organisms that naturally reside on the skin to grow more rapidly.

For example, the Malassezia yeast decomposes sebum and clogs pores. When the scalp develops too quickly, it responds by creating additional hair follicles, which rip off in large groups. The cells glue together as a result of the extra oil, generating huge, visible dandruff particles.

Meanwhile, Itching and soreness are common symptoms of oily dandruff. Gaunitz cautions that oily dandruff can spread past the hairline and over the forehead in severe cases, or even cause hair loss.

According to trained trichologist William Gaunitz, oily dandruff is also known as seborrheic dermatitis.

“It’s an inflammatory scalp disorder in which your body produces too many skin cells in a specific area of the scalp and too much sebum (natural oils), resulting in compounded scalp particles,” he explains.

An oily scalp can lead to dandruff if the hair follicles responsible for hair development get blocked with oil and debris at the root. It can also be prone to infections and hair loss. Also, a lot of unwanted residues can cling to your hair, leaving you with dull, frizzy, lifeless hair that is nearly hard to manage.

The Causes of Oily Dandruff on the Hair

Dandruff on oily hair can be caused by a variety of factors, including overwashing the hair or the type of hair you have. Washing your hair too frequently might tell your scalp that more oil is needed to keep your hair clean. There are various causes of dandruff on oily hair that you may not be aware of; continue reading to learn more.

#1. Genetics and Hair Type

In most cases, the issue of having oily dandruff on your hair can be genetic. If it’s hereditary in your family, there is a tendency for you to suffer from it. Your hair type and the quantity of oil your glands generate are both determined by your DNA. Your hair’s curl type will also influence how well it holds the oil produced by your scalp.

For example, straight hair is more likely to seem oily since there is no structure for the sebum to adhere to, and the oil will coat the lengths of the hair, giving it an oily appearance thereby causing dandruff.

#2. Hormonal Changes

When adolescents grow through puberty, they may actually be producing excessive oil, which can appear on the scalp. This can cause dandruff and also make hair seem oily and demand more regular washing.

Increased sebum production in the hair follicles can be caused by hormonal changes such as those seen during pregnancy or menstruation.

#3. Dirty Hair Tools

Hairbrushes, combs, and straighteners, among other common hair tools, can accumulate oil and styling ingredients in your hair as you use them over time. Meanwhile, using them without keeping them clean and sterilized will aid in the production of oil in your scalp thereby causing dandruff.

#4. Hair Products

Some hair care products might be contributing to your scalp’s oil production without you even realizing it. Mousses, hairsprays, and gels, for example, can give the illusion of being sticky or oily. This can result in itchiness and dandruff.

Shampoo for Oily Dandruff

Do you know washing your hair with water will not solve the problem of excessive oil production on your scalp? This is because water and oil don’t mix, washing with just water won’t get rid of the oil. So don’t forget to use shampoo!

Below is the various shampoo for oily dandruff:

  1. Neutrogena T/Gel Anti-Dandruff Shampoo for Oily Scalp
  2.  Dercos Anti-Dandruff Shampoo For Oily Scalp
  3. Dove Nutritive Solutions Clarify &Hydrate Shampoo
  4. Kerium Anti-Dandruff Gel Shampoo For Oily Scalp
  5.  Pantene Purity Clarifying Shampoo
  6. Squanorm Ducray Anti-Dandruff Treatment Shampoo 

#1. Neutrogena T/Gel Anti-dandruff Shampoo for Oily Scalp

Neutrogena T/Gel Shampoo for Oily Scalp minimizes dandruff’s itching and shedding while caring for your hair and leaving it clean and healthy. It has a peculiar golden, fresh-scented composition that generates a thick lather and is mild enough to be used as often as preferred. 

Also, this shampoo helps maintain a good appearance and healthy scalp as well as dandruff-free, gorgeous hair with frequent usage.

This shampoo contains salicylic acid and piroctone olamine which also help to combat dandruff and also remove extra oil from oily hair

This shampoo for oily dandruff is also dermatologically approved

#2. Dercos Anti-dandruff Shampoo for Oily Scalp

This shampoo is an oily dandruff shampoo that eliminates up to 100% of detectable flakes and provides anti-dandruff prevention for up to 6 weeks. It contains Selenium DS, Salicylic Acid, Ceramide, and Menthol, which leaves the scalp clean, smooth, washed, and less oil production.

This shampoo is for hair that is normal to oily. One can use it daily or often as preferred. 

Furthermore, Dercos anti-dandruff shampoo nourishes and brightens the hair while also rejuvenating the scalp. The shampoo is made to slow down hair loss and prevent weak hair from getting worse. This shampoo is made with high-quality ingredients that target visible dandruff particles from the first wash. It has a pleasant scent and leaves the hair feeling healthy and refreshed. Also, it is highly recommended by dermatologists.

#3. Dove Nutritive Solutions Clarify & Hydrate Shampoo

In a nutshell, this shampoo thoroughly cleans and purifies oily and dull hair from roots to ends. This is because the main component, activated charcoal, is effective in removing buildup and oiliness while remaining mild on all hair types.

This clarifying shampoo cleans hair and can help eliminate build-up without stripping away the vital oils that keep hair looking healthy. This shampoo is light enough to use every day and helps you discover your hair’s natural glow and texture.

To get the desired result, massage the shampoo into damp hair and rinse properly for optimum results. Unlike regular oily hair shampoo, this charcoal-infused solution cleans your hair thoroughly. It’s a great option for people who want a mild shampoo that nourishes their hair without weighing it down. It won’t leave your hair feeling dry or brittle because of its nourishing and moisturizing composition.

#4.Kerium Anti-dandruff Gel Shampoo for Oily Scalp

Kerium Anti-Dandruff Gel Shampoo for Oily Scalp cleanses dandruff-prone and oily delicate scalps associated with excess oil, which is typically accompanied by poor, oily hair and inflammation.

Also, it is enriched anti-dandruff purifying gel shampoo and micro-exfoliating LHATM for targeted action.

 Moreso, with this shampoo, dandruff is effectively and permanently removed, with no recurrence as it reduces oiliness by detoxifying the scalp. As well as lessening Itching.

#5. Pantene Purity Clarifying Shampoo

If you have oily hair, this is the shampoo to use, because it is definitely detoxifying and cleansing, and it’s perfect for oily hair!. This shampoo does not contain moisturizers that can make you lose your hair density.

This shampoo is really clarifying. It cleanses your hair and leaves no residue. Furthermore, Pantene’s shampoos are great for those with oily hair, but it is best used when the oil becomes very severe. This shampoo does not clean away the oil leaving the hair dry and gritty. However, it moisturizes the hair too leaving it moderate and healthy. 

#6. Squanorm Ducray Anti-dandruff Treatment Shampoo 

This shampoo removes the excess oil production on the scalp. It also gets rid of oily, sticky dandruff for good. Meanwhile, in order to erase sticky flakes, this shampoo incorporates a full formula that removes dandruff. The hair and scalp are gently washed with a purifying cleaning foundation.

Best Shampoo for Oily Hair

There are a lot of different shampoos for oily hair formulations for an anti-dandruff shampoo. Below is the best shampoo for oily hair:

  1. OGX Clarify & Shine+ Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo
  2. Neutrogena Anti-Residue Shampoo
  3. Bumble and bumble ‘Sunday Shampoo
  4.  Essentials Daily Clarifying Hair Shampoo
  5.  Refreshing Scalp + Tea Tree Mint Shampoo

#1. OGX Clarify & Shine+ Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo

Apple cider vinegar is well-known in the beauty world for its antibacterial characteristics, as well as its ability to prevent dandruff and enhance sheen.

This cleansing combo received the highest overall rating for its ability to remove oil and product build-up. Nevertheless, 88 percent of respondents stated that their hair appeared smoother following the experiment, with 81 percent saying their hair felt softer and more nourished.

This shampoo helps to balance the scalp and reduce excess oil, leaving your hair lustrous and clean. This clarifying shampoo eliminates build-up and residues which makes the hair balanced, and healthy.

An energizing apple cider vinegar combination is included in this shampoo. Also, this shampoo does not contain sulfates. For optimal results, wash, rinse and condition your hair.

#2. Neutrogena Anti-residue Shampoo

This one features a cleansing recipe that uses grapefruit extract for a light exfoliating effect. The composition of this shampoo is clarifying and gently exfoliating (always a good thing if you have an oily scalp).

Also, this shampoo is quite mild and free of parabens, which are commonly present in some other shampoos. This mild anti-residue shampoo has a non-irritating solution that works to eliminate build-up that causes poor hair days. By gently eliminating heavy build-up, this revitalizing shampoo also helps to enhance hair volume.

This anti-residue shampoo for gentle hair is recommended to be used once a week in order to thoroughly cleanse the hair.

#3. Bumble and Bumble Sunday Shampoo

This shampoo helps to eliminate product build-up, toxins, and any residue from the hair on a weekly basis, giving it a fresh start. The majority of test subjects agreed, appreciating how clean their hair and scalp felt. It was able to remove over 95% of oiliness from their hair.

Perfect for product addicts or infrequent hair washers who require a good clean every now and then.

It is also a  great shampoo to use before chemical operations like dyeing and perming. One can use this shampoo weekly to fully remove product build-up, dirt, and residues. Also, it doesn’t contain any phthalates or parabens.

#4. Essentials Daily Clarifying Hair Shampoo

Essentials Daily Clarifying Shampoo is formulated with a mild composition to enhance the natural beauty of your hair. This pH-balanced deep-cleansing shampoo brings out your hair’s natural beauty while rejuvenating it by eliminating residues without depriving it of moisture.  

The composition offers a pleasant, long-lasting scent. You’ll enjoy how the Suave Essentials Daily Clarifying shampoo brings out the natural beauty of your hair. 

Combining this shampoo with the Suave Daily Clarifying Conditioner will give you the greatest results, delivering 2x more moisture to your hair than a non-conditioning shampoo. After washing your hair, you will have a mild, lasting perfume from the fresh fragrance. There are several shampoo and conditioner choices in the Suave Essentials hair care line.

 Hair is clean, and full of natural shine after use. Plus, the fresh scent stays long after you’ve finished showering. 

#5. Refreshing Scalp + Tea Tree Mint Shampoo

This shampoo thoroughly cleanses hair while leaving it with a breath of freshness. It is made with peppermint, witch hazel, and tea tree oil. This shampoo eliminates residue without stripping strands. It refreshes and resets strands in a 13-fluid-ounce container.

This nourishing shampoo uses a gentle mix to give hair a long-lasting clean while also leaving it lustrous, silky, and moisturized for a healthy appearance.

Furthermore, tea tree oil invigorates the scalp, peppermint extract awakens the senses, and natural astringent, witch hazel helps eliminate buildup and nourishes the hair.

Most consumers complimented how soft this shampoo was on their hair while also appreciating how effective it was at removing excess oil.

 Almost everyone said it helped with greasiness and that it made their hair feel rebalanced. The majority of respondents also said that they didn’t need to wash their hair as frequently because the lengths stayed cleaner for longer. 

Oily Dandruff Treatment

Here is the various treatment for oily dandruff:

  1. Maintaining a Well-balanced Diet
  2.  Applying Scalp Treatments
  3. Shampoo Frequently
  4.  Use a Scalp Scrub
  5. Put your hairstyling products away

#1. Maintaining a Well-Balanced Diet

There’s a saying which states that “ You are what you eat”. A change in nutrition can also have a big impact on the health of your scalp. Poor nutrition can cause an overreaction to your scalp, just as it might cause a breakout after eating fatty food or puffiness after drinking.

However, reduce your intake of bad fats and sugars, such as fried foods and processed sugar. Seborrheic Dermatitis has a strong fungal component, and reducing the odds of a fungal flare-up can be accomplished by avoiding high-glucose meals. Furthermore, avoiding these sorts of bad eating habits would help reduce and prevent dandruff.

Also, eating good fats in the form of omega 3-6-9 can help decrease inflammation and relieve itching.

#2. Applying Scalp Treatments

Scalp treatments are effective for oily dandruff since many of them contain antifungal and anti-inflammatory components. According to some researchers, you can use Eucerene’s DermoCapillaire Anti-Dandruff Scalp Treatment, which contains Licochalcone A, an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory substance derived from Chinese licorice root that calms the skin. Some dermatologists also recommend using extra-virgin raw coconut oil, which is also anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory for oily dandruff treatment. Coconut oil can also be used for scalp treatment because it also fights against bacteria which can help eradicate dandruff.

Massaging treatments into the scalp one to two times a day, with or without washing, will help clarify the scalp while also providing calming relief from any itching.

#3. Shampoo Frequently

When you don’t shampoo your hair frequently enough, dead skin cells can build up on your scalp, resulting in white flakes ( Dandruff). According to the American Academy of Dermatology, those with extremely oily hair may need to shampoo up to once a day. Shampoo cleans the scalp by removing excess oil, dirt, and residual hair products. Furthermore, washing your hair with a shampoo and conditioner, that has the essential components to combat oily dandruff on a regular basis is an important factor in gradually but steadily eradicating oily dandruff.

Using the appropriate shampoo for an oily scalp is the way to guarantee that your oily dandruff gets the most effective treatment every time.

#4. Use a Scalp Scrub

Using a scalp scrub is, in general, a good sanitary habit for everybody. Anyone with oily dandruff should pay special attention to this. Scrubs can help to exfoliate excess oil and skin while still retaining a healthy amount of hydration.

 Even if one doesn’t have dandruff or it isn’t severe, using a scalp scrub to remove excess buildup can aid to stimulate blood circulation, which is essential for keeping excellent scalp health.

Applying a mild scrub one to two times each week can aid in the process of oily dandruff treatment. Meanwhile, also avoid excessively scrubbing, brushing, or scratching the scalp.

#5. Put Your Hairstyling Products Away

With so much healing going on at the scalp, the last thing you’d do is add more irritants to the mix. Unfortunately, this may require you to keep some of your favorite styling items. Any chemical-based or alcohol-containing products aren’t going to escape when you are undergoing oily dandruff treatment.

Imagine the scalp as an open wound, and in that region, you just want to heal. If a product doesn’t have any therapeutic benefits for the inflammation and discomfort you’re currently feeling, it’s better to put it away in order to speed up the oily dandruff treatment. Keep your products clean and focus on what’s going on with your scalp until you’re no longer having problems.

However, how long will it take for your scalp to recover to its normal state? To see encouraging outcomes with any of these treatments, you’d have to wait three to four weeks for a visible result. This will enable you to treat your oily dandruff effectively.


Generally, oily dandruff can appear unexpectedly when the weather, nutrition, products, and other factors change. Because our skin, including our scalp, is the biggest organ in our body. 

Investing in a good oily shampoo can help you undergo the process of oily dandruff treatment. Keep your hair clean and healthy.

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Oily Dandruff FAQs

Why do I have oily dandruff?

Oily dandruff can be caused by a variety of factors, including washing your hair too frequently, or the type of hair you have. Washing your hair too frequently might tell your scalp that more oil is needed to keep your hair clean.

What Should I apply If I have Oily Dandruff?

You can apply scalp treatment or scalp scrub to treat your oily dandruff. More so, avoid any hair product that contains oil, as it will worsen the situation.

What does Oily Dandruff look like?

The particles of oily dandruff are big, yellowish, and plaque-like. It is more like yellowish patches on your scalp and your hair is stuck with them.

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