Smelly scalp is a problem that affects more people than one would assume. It is actually one of the most prominent scalp-related problems.
An unpleasant smell of the scalp may be result of poor hygienic habits but in that case the whole head smells bad. Smelly scalp is often caused by bacteria which dwell in it and it has nothing to with how often a person bathes or washes his or her hair.
This problem can be very embarrassing because when the smell emanates from the person others often think that he or she is lacking personal hygiene habits. It is also frustrating because the smell comes back soon after shampooing.
Causes of smelly scalp
Some people have significant problems with smelly scalp. No matter how often they wash their hair, the smell comes back within just a few hours. The problem is that the smell is not something that can be cured with simple shampoo because it is caused by bacteria or fungus that have infested the skin on the head.
Oily scalps are particularly prone to bacteria and fungus. These organisms normally live in every scalp, even the healthy ones, but when the environment becomes unbalanced due to excess oil production, they thrive to it, penetrate the follicles, breed and become much more difficult to handle.
What to do?
Most people first try perfumed shampoos, but they only mask the problem. Once the fragrance wears off, the bad smell comes back. Shaving the had may solve the problem but for most people this is not an option. The scalp needs to be purified and its natural balance must be restored. Zinc may help with that, because it cleans the scalp and regulates the function of sebum glands. Once, the sebum glands start working properly again, the skin of the scalp will be able to fight the bacteria or the fungus on its own.
Several herbal remedies can be very helpful too. Those include ivy, burdock and thyme.
Diluted apple cider vinegar, used for washing, will disinfect, deodorize and disinfect the scalp and remove excess oil. This is one of the most effective and simplest remedies for smelly scalp.
Onion juice has antibacterial properties and can be used for treating smelly scalp. It should be left to sit for 15 minutes, and then rinsed off.
Essential oils, especially lavender, can be effective too. They should be applied to the scalp one day before shampooing. Olive oil and or rosemary oil can be used for the same purpose.
Other remedies include lemon juice with yogurt, crushed garlic cloves, tea tree oil and jojoba oil.