Last updated: 07/03/2023
Dandruff can happen to anyone, at any time and if you’re noticing white flakes around your hairline, scalp, and on your clothes, you probably have a bout of dandruff. Dandruff is nothing to be concerned about and is easily treatable when you use the right products. Here, we’ll be sharing the best anti-dandruff shampoos to use when a dry, flaky scalp occurs.
What causes dandruff?
In short, dandruff is a flaking scalp, caused by inflammation. There are a number of reasons why your scalp may be irritated, itchy and flaky, causing dandruff.
- You may have seborrheic dermatitis which is caused by your scalp counteracting the overproduction of sebum, making your scalp become dry and flakey as opposed to oily.
- You may also have a case of contact dermatitis.
- You may not have shampooed your hair enough, causing skin cells to accumulate and create flakes
Once you have found the root of your dandruff, you can begin to treat it.
What key ingredients to look out for in anti-dandruff shampoos
Check the ingredients list on the back of your chosen anti-dandruff shampoo bottle, if you spot the following key ingredients, you’ll be well on your way towards a flake-free scalp.
- Pyrithione zinc
- Selenium sulfide
- Salicylic acid
- Coal tar
How do you use an anti-dandruff shampoo?
Dampen your hair and massage in your anti-dandruff shampoo for at least 5 minutes. To really work up a lather, you can also use a scalp massager. Rinse your hair thoroughly before using any conditioner. We recommend using a wet brush to really make sure any trace of product is removed from your hair and scalp.
Our Picks of the Best Anti-dandruff Shampoos
- VICHY Dercos Anti-Dandruff - Normal to Oily Hair Shampoo
- Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo Treatment for Scalp Psoriasis and Dandruff
- Redken Scalp Relief Dandruff Control Shampoo
- Kérastase Symbiose Moisturising Anti-Dandruff Cellular Shampoo, For Dry Sensitive Scalp, Prone To Dandruff
- Philip Kingsley Flaky/Itchy Scalp Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
- Paul Mitchell 'Green' Tea Tree Special Shampoo
- Uriage DS Hair Anti-Dandruff Treatment Shampoo
- Goldwell Dualsenses Scalp Specialist Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
- Wella Professionals Invigo Balance Clean Scalp Anti-dandruff Shampoo
- OUAI Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
VICHY Dercos Anti-Dandruff - Normal to Oily Hair Shampoo
Wave goodbye to dandruff and reduce the amount of oil sitting on your scalp with the VICHY Dercos Anti Dandruff shampoo. The formula is enriched with key ingredients, Selenium DS and Cohesyl to help target your flaky scalp from the first wash. Our customers have achieved noticeable results after 3 uses of this powerful anti-dandruff shampoo.
To use, apply to wet hair, lather and leave on for 2 minutes before rinsing. In the initial treatment phase, use three time per week for 4 weeks. Gentle enough for daily use if required. For ongoing maintenance, use once a week alongside your regular use shampoo. Be careful to avoid contact with eyes and damaged skin.
- Suitable for: Normal or oily scalps prone to dandruff
- Why LF customers love it: Doesn't leave any residue and scalp is comfortable after one wash. Read more reviews here
Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo Treatment for Scalp Psoriasis and Dandruff
Is your scalp feeling dry and irritated? If you are suffering from seborrhoeic dermatitis psoriasis and dandruff, this Neutrogena shampoo helps to thoroughly cleanse and soothe your scalp. Formulated with Neutar Solubilised Coal Tar extract, this gentle shampoo leaves your hair feeling cleansed and manageable.
To use, apply liberal amounts to wet scalp and massage, leaving on for several minutes before rinsing. Repeat if required. Treatment phase usually lasts for six weeks, longer periods of treatment should be under the direction and supervision of a doctor. Not recommended for children below 12 years. Avoid using on inflamed or broken skin.
- Suitable for: Seborrhoeic dermatitis of the scalp, scalp psoriasis and dandruff
- Why LF customers love it: Effective on stubborn flaky scalps. Read more reviews here
Redken Scalp Relief Dandruff Control Shampoo
Is your scalp is dry and irritated? The Redken Scalp Relief Shampoo will effectively cleanse and remove impurities from your sensitive scalp. Thanks to soothing lavender extract and glycerin, your scalp will be refreshed and re balanced after just one wash.
To use, apply to dry or wet hair, massage into scalp and leave for 5 minutes before rinsing. Use at least twice a week for best results.
- Suitable for: Dry, itchy scalps
- Why LF customers love it: Really hydrates scalp leaving hair soft. Doesn't appear to strip colour. Read more reviews here
Kérastase Symbiose Moisturising Anti-Dandruff Cellular Shampoo, For Dry Sensitive Scalp, Prone To Dandruff
Purify your scalp and deep cleanse the hair for comfort and clarity with the new formula from Kérastase. The Symbiose shampoo gently exfoliates to remove and prevent flaking of the scalp using salicylic acid. Formulated with a non-irritating, fresh scent, the shampoo also helps to balance moisture and keep your hair soft to the touch.
To use, apply to wet hair, massage scalp and rinse thoroughly.
- Suitable for: Dry, sensitive scalp prone to dandruff
- Why LF customers love it: So effective, went from washing hair daily to twice a week. Read more reviews here
Philip Kingsley Flaky/Itchy Scalp Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
This soothing blend contains anti-microbial piroctone olamine which helps to clear flakes and skin cell build up, commonly known as dandruff. The formula helps to alleviate dryness and restores the scalps microflora balance to leave your locks and head healthy. Finished with a refreshing apple scent, the targeted treatment ensures your shower remains a sumptuous everyday ritual.
Can be used daily until scalp is free from flakes, thereafter can be used at regular intervals as needed. Apply to wet hair, lather and massage for a minute then rinse. Repeat if required.
- Suitable for: Itching and irritation - vegan
- Why LF customers love it: Very gentle, non drying. Leave hair less greasy too. Read more reviews here
Paul Mitchell 'Green' Tea Tree Special Shampoo
Remedy pesky dandruff with this award-winning purifying shampoo from Paul Mitchell which contains natural tea tree oil, peppermint and lavender. The lightweight formula removes oil, dirt and impurities without stripping moisture and leaves the head feeling revived and refreshed.
To use, apply to damp hair, lather and rinse.
- Suitable for: Colour-treated hair
- Why LF customers love it: Fresh smelling shampoo that gives scalp a nice clean tingle. Can be drying especially on curly hair types so best to use with a sulphate-free shampoo. Read more reviews here
Uriage DS Hair Anti-Dandruff Treatment Shampoo
Blended with a patented TLR2-Regul technology, the Uriage DS Hair Anti-Dandruff Treatment Shampoo is a soothing and softening formula that helps reduce both itching and flaking. Uriage thermal water and edelweiss help to infuse moisture and nourishment, strengthening the scalp and promoting healthy hair growth, while piroctone olamine and zinc lactate combat flaking.
To use, apply once or twice a week on wet hair, the forehead and nape of neck. Lather and leave for up to 3 minutes before rinsing.
- Suitable for: Adults and children
- Why LF customers love it: Gentle yet effective - even on cradle cap like flakes.
Goldwell Dualsenses Scalp Specialist Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Suited to those with thinning hair and sensitive scalps, this specialist shampoo from Goldwell targets overall scalp health, including flaking, to revitalise the head and hair. The lightweight shampoo contains octopirox and zinc pyrithione that remove dandruff and reduce itching and boasts colour protecting benefits.
To use, apply to wet hair, massage into a lather and rinse.
- Suitable for: Thinning hair and sensitive scalps
- Why LF customers love it: Smells nice and does help with build-up. Didn't strip colour and is good for oily hair too.
Wella Professionals Invigo Balance Clean Scalp Anti-dandruff Shampoo
Remove flakes from your scalp and combat dandruff. Formulated with Zinc Pyrithione and Balance-Blend™ this gentle shampoo delivers a soothing, cleansing and moisturising effect while responding to individual scalp and hair needs.
To use, apply to damp hair, massage to a lather and rinse.
- Suitable for: Dry scalps
- Why LF customers love it: Nice smelling shampoo that doesn't dry out hair.
OUAI Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
This comforting shampoo uses salicylic acid to exfoliate the scalp and remove build up. Helping with dandruff and dryness, the hydrating, high-performance blend conditions the skin and hair and is infused with a sweet, tropical scent that adds a touch of luxury to your routine.
To use, apply to wet hair and massage into scalp. Leave on for 5 minutes before rinsing.
- Suitable for: Oily and irritated scalps
- Why LF customers love it: Lathers well and leaves ends feeling softer.