rich emollient used in the management of eczema, psoriasis and other dry skin conditions.


If you’ve ever had scalp eczema or an itchy scalp you will know how maddening it can be. Sometimes you wonder if you might even have nits and the dry skin flaking is embarassing.   Because eczema on the scalp is harder to treat it can get out of hand, hiding unseen under your hair – how do you keep your scalp moisturised without leaving your hair greasy?

Here are a few tips to save your scalp unecessary pain:

  1. Wash hair only when you need to. If it’s not greasy, try not to wash it. But if it’s particularly sore, bleeding etc. washing can help to clear up your scalp and help you feel cleaner.
  2. Don’t blow dry – if your scalp is particularly bad try to leave time for your hair to dry naturally if you can.  Hair dryers can really dry out your scalp and will exacerbate the problem.  Make extra time, get up earlier and towel dry instead. Drive with the windows open and just let it dry naturally.
  3. Use a scalp treatment – I find Betacap to be very effective but be warned. If you have broken skin on your scalp it does burn when you first apply it.  It hurts but the burning does subside and a few treatments with this stuff should really see off your scalp eczema.  Once you think it’s on the mend, do one or two more treatments so you make sure it’s completely gone.  Betacap is a liquid topical steroid and should be used sparingly but it doesn’t leave your hair too greasy so you can use it and not wash your hair the next day. I usually do prefer to wash my hair after using it – it does have quite a strong smell.  You will have to get Betacap on prescription.  Olive oil can really help psoriasis too but does make your hair greasy!
  4. Use gentle, natural shampoo – I’m trying BareFoot SOS dry scalp shampoo at the moment but there are lots you could try like Neutrogena, Faith in Nature or E45 dry scalp shampoo.  You could also experiment with soap nuts which are a truly natural alternative – more to follow on that soon when I’ve tried it myself. nb: Barefoot SOS products contain macadamia nuts – but even with a nut allergy myself I seem to be OK using this shampoo (I only spotted the nut ingredient after using the shampoo a few times)
  5. Throw away your sharp combs and brushes – This is a tough one.  A good sharp comb or brush can be absolute bliss for an itchy scalp but you can do huge amounts of damage when you are combing your hair… yeah we all know what you’re really doing.  Digging in the comb and having a really good old scratch of your poor scalp.  It may feel incredible but it’s not good. And having that nasty sharp comb lying around is too much temptation. Buy one that is soft smooth plastic, has wide tines and is not metal – it will be kinder to your scalp, even when you do give in and have a bit of a scratch…

So whether you have a dry scalp, excema or psoriasis on your scalp, these few tips here just might help. I may be teaching you stuff you already know but because it’s hidden under your hair it’s easy to ignore and not treat it till it gets quite bad.

What do you do when your scalp gets dry and itchy? How do you help eczema or psoriasis on your scalp heal quickly? What’s your top tip?




An allergy and health writer and freelance copywriter, Ruth is passionate about helping those with allergies and food intolerances take control, embrace their condition, and learn to live with and love who they are. It can be very lonely finding you have allergies and discovering what helps you can be a life long journey. What works for one person won't work for another, so after trying nearly every allergy treatment under the sun and finding hours of research necessary to keep abreast of what's going on, Ruth started writing her blog, What Allergy? in April 2009. Ruth has life threatening allergies herself to all nuts, all diary, tomatoes and celery and knows first-hand what it's like to have an anaphylactic attack. Voted in the Top 5 UK allergy blogs by Cision UK in 2011, What Allergy is packed full of interesting articles, hints and tips and product reviews which are a must read for anyone with allergies, food intolerances or sensitivities, asthma and eczema. From subjects such as "What is celery allergy?" to "Surviving a holiday abroad with allergies", it's packed with useful and interesting information. You can register free for a weekly newsletter by visiting her website and also keep in touch by following her on Facebook and Twitter.

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