It’s a vicious cycle. Bad shampoos cause dandruff, but then you need more shampoo to get rid of the dandruff, which dries out your scalp and causes more dandruff… Luckily, the best dandruff shampoo for African American hair knows how to break that pattern for you.
The trick is to find a shampoo that does the opposite of what most shampoos do. It should moisturize and enhance your natural oils to soothe itchy scalp.
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SheaMoisture Intensive Hydration Shampoo (Our Top Pick)
SheaMoisture creates the best products for Black skin and hair, hands down, and they just hit their 30th birthday on the market! An astronomical age in the world of skin and hair care.
Their intensive hydration shampoo works its way into your roots to prevent breakage, and it enhances curls. The all-natural ingredients help soothe the scalp, so you should see less irritation-related dandruff after several uses.
The catch? It’s not specifically formulated to be a dandruff shampoo. If you’re already using a luxury, made-for-black-hair product, it’s iffy whether you’ll see an improvement by switching over. But if you’ve been using regular shampoo, SheaMoisture will be a huge upgrade.
• Made by Black entrepreneurs for black hair.
• All-natural, gentle ingredients to soothe itchy scalp conditions.
• Enhances curls and prevents hair breakage.
• Not specifically formulated as a dandruff shampoo.
Every Man Jack Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
If your #1 goal of getting rid of dandruff is backed up by that #2 goal of sticking with men’s products, Every Man Jack is the right choice for you. Their anti-dandruff shampoo is just as effective as any other, but what sets it apart is those manly vibes that are so hard to find on the medicinal shampoo aisle.
It has a warm, peppermint scent, and it comes in a giant tub that’ll last for ages. (I don’t know who decided giant tubs of hair product is a “guy thing,” but they were right.) Better yet, the ingredients are naturally derived, so they’re skin-friendly and fresh.
Thanks to Every Man Jack, you don’t have to give up that little piece of manly dignity when you get an anti-dandruff shampoo. It’s an easy pick for this list of best dandruff shampoo for African American hair.
• Nice peppermint scent.
• Giant tub of product that’ll last for a long time.
• All-natural ingredients.
• Very manly.
• Average among dandruff shampoos.
SACHAJUAN Scalp Shampoo
Dry, itchy scalp is sometimes caused by the shampoo you’re already using (and that includes dandruff shampoos). Skin irritants sneak their way into even the most reliable of products. Sachajuan’s sales pitch is that they strip the complexity out of hair care, throwing out the necessary ingredients that might be causing your dandruff.
Their scalp shampoo lives up to that name. It’s simple and effective, cleansing flakes and moisturizing your skin. Because it’s so unobtrusive, I’d recommend it for guys with braids and dreadlocks. It doesn’t mess around when it comes to getting rid of dandruff.
• No “extra” ingredients. Good for sensitive skin.
• Best for guys with braids or dreads.
• Immediate results.
• Marketed to white women.
American Crew Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Guys often don’t realize that oily skin and hair can be just as dandruff-causing as dry skin and hair. But American Crew knows what’s up on that end. I’d especially recommend trying them out if you haven’t had much luck with other dandruff shampoo brands. Your regular bottle might be targeting the wrong scalp problem.
It has a great lather that you can feel working against your scalp. And if it’s a trustworthy brand that you’re looking for, American Crew is a safe option. They’ve been developing men’s skin and hair products for over 25 years.
My only complaint is the after-smell. At first whiff, no issues. But once you let it linger, it’s a little artificial and icky. Luckily, it doesn’t linger too long.
• Reliable brand name.
• Good for unusually oily scalp that’s causing dandruff.
• Nice texture, better than your average dandruff shampoo.
• Medicinal, artificial smell if you breathe too deeply.
• Need to use a conditioner afterwards.
If your mom ever sat you in the tub and scrubbed your scalp with that expensive, minty-smelling medicinal shampoo from the grocery store, you probably have a good idea of what kind of vibes Kick brings to the table.
They’re a newer brand on the market with a pretty good 3-year run so far. What really makes their dandruff shampoo stand out is its versatility. The tea tree oil and peppermint are classic anti-dandruff, pro-scalp-and-hair ingredients, but it’s also formulated for a sweaty, active lifestyle, and it combats hair loss. It packs quite the punch!
Full disclosure, one Amazon reviewer raved about how well it worked on their dog… not sure whether Kick took that as a compliment or an insult… I’ll just say this: if re-tail dandruff shampoos just aren’t working for you, its paw-sible Kick could bring something unique to the table.
• Nice minty smell. Feels like it’s working while you’re using it.
• Fights hair loss and keeps your updo in good shape while you’re working out.
• Great on dogs? Bow-WOW?
• Not made specifically for Black hair, but still high-quality and reliable.
How Do You Get Rid Of Dandruff In African American Hair?
It’s a balancing act. Sometimes what your hair needs and what your scalp needs won’t look like the perfect center-bubble of a venn diagram.
Dandruff is caused by skin irritation, and the root cause for that can be dryness, bacteria, oil buildup, and more. So to get rid of it, you need to cleanse your scalp regularly. You can also give yourself a little head massage with your shampoo to help blood flow and do a better job of cleaning the area.
But your hair needs moisture and natural oils to keep its healthy, thick, curly look. The same oils that might clog the skin on your scalp and cause irritation.
That’s why you should pick something from this list of best dandruff shampoo for African American hair. It’s such a godsend. They cleanse and moisturize, massage and soothe. (Well, you’ll probably have to do the massaging part yourself.)
Pair it with the best facial moisturizer for black men, and you’ve got a solid routine to cover your whole head.