Acne in any form is uncomfortable and unsightly. But, having acne on your scalp can be even worse. Not only can it be painful as well as itchy. But, scalp acne can make it hard to wash, brush, and style your hair.
If you have scalp acne, you know how hard it can be to get rid of it. Conventional acne treatments rarely work, because your hair gets in the way. And, although teenage skin is most prone to acne outbreaks, that doesn’t mean that they are the only ones who get scalp acne. So, what’s a person to do?
If you want to get rid of your scalp acne and regain control over your scalp and hair, then read on to learn more about the condition and our top five picks of the best shampoos for scalp acne.
- 1 Top Five Best Shampoos for Scalp Acne 2020-Comparision table
- 2 Top Five Best Shampoos for Scalp Acne 2020-Review
- 3 What is Acne?
- 4 What is scalp Acne?
- 5 What causes scalp acne?
- 6 Symptoms of scalp acne?
- 7 Who can get scalp acne?
- 8 How to choose a shampoo for scalp acne?
- 9 Pros and Cons of shampoos for scalp acne
- 10 How to use your Shampoo properly
- 11 Other treatments for scalp acne
- 12 How to prevent acne?
- 13 Do you need to have acne on your scalp to use these shampoos?
- 14 Final Words
Top Five Best Shampoos for Scalp Acne 2020-Comparision table
Who can use
#1 Editor Choice
Men and Women, People with colored hair or sensitive scalps
Itchy & flaky scalp, Oily Hair, Hair loss, Dandruff, Head Lice
Botanical Keratin, Tea Tree Oil, Rosemary Oil, Lavender Oil, Jojoba Oil, Argan Oil
8oz or 16oz
Menand Women. Color treated hair
Scalp pimples, Itching, Inflammation, Scalp Psoriasis, Other scalp infections
Coconut Oil, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Jojoba Oil, Emu Oil, Aloe vera, Sea butter, Sunflower See Oil,
12oz (shampoo) and 8 oz. (conditioner)
Men,Women, and Children
Seborrhea, irritate scalps, Ringworm, Acne, Flaking scalp
Cutipure CLR, Lemon Essential Oil, Witch Hazel, Aloe Vera, Calendula
Men and Women
Seborrheic dermatitis, Seborrheic keratosis,
Aloe vera, Orange Extract, Manuka Honey, Coconut Oil, Cehami, Tapioca, Coconut oil,
4 oz each
Men and Women
Folliculitis, Dermatitis, Dandruff, Itchy scalp
Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Coconut Oil, Glycerin, Guar Gum, Salicylic Acid, Citric Acid
Top Five Best Shampoos for Scalp Acne 2020-Review
1 MappeHolistics Pure Tea Tree Oil Shampoo
Maple Holistics may not label this shampoo as anti-acne, but the inclusion of tea tree oil as a major ingredient indicates the product’s true purpose. As mentioned above, tea tree oil is a powerful anti-acne substance. Maple Holistics has included Botanical Keratin, Rosemary, Lavender, and jojoba oil for a powerful anti-fungal and antibacterial shampoo.
Reviewers note that the Pure Tea Tree Oil Shampoo is effective for mild to moderate scalp acne. It can also help with dandruff; however, it is not formulated for severe cases of either condition. But, it will help to nourish and revitalize your damaged hair and scalp.
2 Healthy hair plus Antifungal Shampoo and Conditioner Combo
With Healthy Hair Plus’s Antifungal Shampoo and Conditioner Combo, you get a large one-two punch on your scalp acne. In fact, this combo treats scalp acne from all angles, including the pimples themselves, itching, inflammation, and redness.
Unusual amongst the shampoos on this list, Healthy Hair Plus uses emu oil as an anti-fungal. Emu oil is used for on-skin conditions like high cholesterol and sore muscles. But, you will also occasionally find it in products for dry skin and wound healing. Its presence in this shampoo helps to calm the soreness inherent in scalp acne.
3 Healthy hair plus ANTIb Antibacterial Shampoo
In addition to their Antifungal Shampoo and Conditioner Combo, Healthy Hair Plus makes the ANTIb Antibacterial Shampoo. This shampoo uses aloe vera, witch hazel, and lemon essential oil to sooth your irritated scalp. They also help to clear out your pores. And, really, who doesn’t love the mild send of lemons that this shampoo exudes because of the lemon essential oil.
The ANTIb Antibacterial Shampoo has mostly positive ratings and is reported to work in just a few days. It even can be used as a body wash, so there’s not much to dislike about this product.
4 pHat 5.5 Seborrheic Dermatits Shampoo and Conditioner Set
pHat 5.5’s Seborrheic Dermatitis Shampoo and Conditioner Set is specifically formulated for people who have trouble with their scalps. The addition of aloe vera, orange extract, manuka honey, coconut oil, cehami, and tapioca helps prevent flare-ups of dermatitis and acne before they begin and soothes your scalp.
All of the ingredients listed above help keep the pH of the products in the helpful 5.5 range, which is the pH of the human body. This helps make the shampoo and conditioner work well without irritating your skin. With all of these great ingredients, it is no wonder that pHat 5.5’s shampoo and conditioner set is highly rated on Amazon.
5 CLn Healthy Scalp Shampoo
CLn’s Healthy Scalp Shampoo is last on this list not because it doesn’t work well. Most reviewers indicate that it is highly effective and will clear up your scalp acne within just a few uses. But, it does have Sodium Laureth Sulfate as the second ingredient. In general, you want to stay away from products with sulfates in them. However, for a shampoo designed for scalp acne, sulfates can be helpful, but they must be used with caution.
In order to get the most out of this shampoo, you need to use it as directed, so only 2-3 times per week. If your scalp is particularly sensitive, you should only use shampoo once per week. This will mitigate some of the negative effects of the Healthy Scalp Shampoo, which include dryness and flaking. If you want a product that works but doesn’t mind being careful in its use, then this shampoo is for you.
What is Acne?
No matter where it occurs on your body, acne comes from the same cause, a clogged pore. The most common type of acne is called acne vulgaris, and most people deal with some form of it in their lifetime. Most commonly acne is associated with the teenage years, but at least 20%of acne cases every year occur in adults.
Asa skin condition, acne can occur anywhere on your body that is covered with skin—so anywhere on your body. Often, you will find acne on your face, neck, chest, back, shoulder, and upper arms.
There are three different levels of acne, mild, moderate, and severe. Here’s how you tell them apart.
What is scalp Acne?
Scalp acne is acne that appears on your scalp. It can take the form of either blackheads or whiteheads, but the whiteheads cause the most symptoms. Scalp acne can occur anywhere on the scalp, including the hairline and top of the head. This type of acne can be hard to treat traditionally because it is covered with hair, which makes it hard for traditional topical creams to be applied.
It is important to get scalp acne cleared up as quickly as possible so that it does not turn into folliculitis. This is a skin condition that is caused by an inflamed hair follicle. Folliculitis may look like common acne, but in severe cases, it can be painful and cause permanent hair loss.
What causes scalp acne?
There are many possible causes of scalp acne. The most important is genetics. Some people are just more predisposed to getting scalp acne. This has to do with how much or little oil your scalp produces and whether or not your pores clog easily.
You may also get scalp acne if you have unwashed, oily hair. Oil can build up on your scalp if not washed off regularly, which is a major cause of acne. Another substance that can build up and clog pores is oily or greasy hair products. If you already have an oily scalp or are predisposed to acne, you should steer clear of these types of products.
As with other types of acne, stress can cause outbreaks. Stress lowers our immune systems, which then cannot protect us against flare-ups of the bacteria that cause acne. Exercise, meditation, and Vitamin B5 can help you reduce your stress level, and hopefully clear up any scalp acne problems.
Finally, what you wear on your head is an important determiner of whether or not you will have scalp acne. If you were dirty headgear such as hats, bandanas, or helmets, the oils and dirt on them can transfer to your scalp and clog your pores. The best way to ensure that your headwear is not causing scalp acne is to wash your hair on a regular basis, especially if you are wearing headgear.
Symptoms of scalp acne?
Scalp acne presents in much the same way as other types of acne. You will see pustules with either white or blackheads. Whiteheads are most common on the scalp. There are a few common symptoms that set scalp acne apart from acne on another part of your body.
Who can get scalp acne?
The easy answer is anyone. However, certain people are more likely to get this rare form of acne. While the actual cause of any type of acne is not 100% clear, dermatologists have discovered that if you suffer from dandruff you are more likely to have scalp acne. This could be because dandruff also indicates a problem with the skin on your scalp.
Therefore, if you treat your dandruff problems, you can likely stave off any scalp acne problems. But, keep in mind that this may be a condition you could develop down the road.
How to choose a shampoo for scalp acne?
Shampoos that are formulated for scalp acne are one of the easiest ways to get rid of that stubborn scalp acne. Scalp acne shampoos are a little hard to find, so you could try a shampoo formulated for dandruff. But, these may not work as well. The best thing you can do is try out one of our top five picks of the best shampoos for scalp acne listed below.
What does “formulated for scalp acne” mean?
When we say a shampoo needs to be formulated for scalp acne we mean that it should have ingredients proven to help clear up acne. Some of the best ingredients to look for in a scalp acne shampoo are as follows.
Pros and Cons of shampoos for scalp acne
Before deciding whether or not to use a shampoo designed for scalp acne, you should be aware of a few pros and cons.
How to use your Shampoo properly
To get the most benefit out of your new shampoo (and conditioner) for acne-prone scalps, you will want to make sure and read the instructions on the bottle. In general, you will want to
Step1 Wet your hair
Step2 Put a small amount of shampoo on your hands
Step3Massage gentle into your scalp
Step5 Add conditioner (optional)
However, the exact steps and frequency of use will depend on the shampoo and conditioner you decide to use. For example, some combinations of ingredients and overall formulas of the shampoo may be extremely drying to your scalp. These shampoos need to be used only once or twice a week to feel their benefits. Any more than that and you could damage your hair and scalp.
If you have colored hair, you will also want to be careful about the shampoo you choose and how often you use it. Some medicated shampoos can lighten or change the appearance of colored hair.
In general, you should begin using the product less often and then work your way up. If you have a negative reaction or have concerns about a product, discontinue use and speak to your dermatologist right away.
Other treatments for scalp acne
If you have scalp acne and don’t want to rely on a shampoo, there are other treatment options for you to try. The most proven of these include
How to prevent acne?
While genetics largely determine who will get acne, there are a few things that you can do to help prevent acne outbreaks on your scalp.
- Wash your hair and scalp at least once per day.
- Don’t massage your scalp too hard.
- Wear sunscreen and a hat when out in the sun
- Don’t pick at or pop a pimple
- Shampoo every day, but reconsider the conditioner
- Use lukewarm water when washing your hair
- Only use one “deep cleansing” product at a time. This prevents irritation.
- Wear less makeup/hair products
- Manage your stress
Do you need to have acne on your scalp to use these shampoos?
No. You do not need to have scalp acne to use these shampoos and conditioners. As can be seen in the chart above, many of these shampoos treat a wide variety of scalp conditions. If you have issues with your scalp, you will want to look for a shampoo that is either antibacterial, antifungal, or both. This will ensure that any problems you are having will likely be solved by the shampoo.
If, on the other hand, you do not have any problems with your scalp, these shampoos and conditioners may not be for you. The ingredients in them can be harsh, especially if they are of the medicated variety. This can cause healthy scalps to dry out or become flaky. Therefore, people without any scalp problems should probably find another shampoo and conditioner to use.
In fact, by picking one of our top five best shampoos for scalp acne, you will be jumpstarting your way to a healthy scalp.