Hate. Dandruff. It horrifies me. I refuse to eat coconut cake because it looks like it’s covered in dandruff. I hate orange juice pulp because it’s like having — you guessed it — dandruff floating in my glass. I was only able to ignore my winter-induced raw, irritated, itchy scalp until I turned into a walking Parmesan cheese monster. While most dandruff is caused by dry skin, it can also be the result of irritated oily skin, sensitivity to hair products, or fungus. Of all the oils taking residence in my medicine cabinet, there’s a reason why I would kick them all to the curb for tea tree oil. Well, there are actually a few reasons — reasons that were discovered after a solid afternoon of research while sitting in the Books-a-Million café. I read some weird Australian medical journal, a study from the National Center for Biotechnology Information, and even a report from the American Cancer Society for this info, so y’all better appreciate it.
Hydrocarbons in tea tree oil called “terpenes” fight many types of bacteria (like MRSA) and can treat acne, skin fungus, and cold sores. Tea tree oil is able to cure dandruff and itchy scalps because the oil contains moisturizing benefits in addition to its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antifungal, and antiseptic properties. It also penetrates any blockage between your skin and sebaceous glands while screaming “Bye Felicia!!!” to gross pore cooties. I’ve used this ingredient to not only cure my scalp woes, but to murder cystic pimples and treat gross ingrown hairs. Basically, tea tree oil is amazing. To avoid a puddle of grease on my pillowcase I wear one of my many du-rags to bed. Yes, I said one of many. I used to tell people I slept in “satin scarves,” but let’s call a spade a spade and accept that I go to bed wearing a durag. Do not fear carrying a strong smell or having greasy hair forever, because these oils shampoo out very easily in the shower. I treat my scalp right before a “wash day,” and can’t detect any residue post-shower. Hooray! If your looking for a great tea tree oil conditioner check out the best o
ne on the market by maple Holistics.
Malassezia is one of the most common causes of dandruff. It is a yeast-like fungus which can sometimes go out of control and that usually leads to extreme skin cell growth. When these cells die they become dandruff. Tea tree oil is known to have anti-fungal properties, so it can battle funguses like the aforementioned Malassezia which makes it a great weapon for combating dandruff. The fact that Australian Aborigines traditionally used tea tree oil for treating their wounds and infections makes me an even bigger believer in its medical qualities. On the other hand, there is not a lot of scientific evidence that could prove these qualities, so we will probably just have to trust all the positive reviews and the knowledge of Aborigines.
However, there has been at least one reported research on the effectiveness of tea tree oil. The results were overwhelming – 5% tea tree oil shampoo proved to be much better at removing dandruff than a regular shampoo. Tea Tree Oil Conditioner by Maple Holistics on Amazon.