Know The Ingredient That’s In Your Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Fungus – more specifically, a microorganism known as Malassezia Globosa – is the key cause of dandruff. For those of us with intense, stubborn dandruff, this fungus overpopulates our scalps causing more than just a few flakes. It’s more like an uncomfortable, itchy, and sometimes painful scaling. But it’s not all doom and gloom. Knowing what’s in your anti-dandruff shampoo can help you find the easiest and most effective dandruff solution without sacrificing a nice looking head of hair. It’s just a matter of picking the right one for you with the best active ingredient for your needs. Here’s what you need to know.
Zinc pyrithione has been used as an anti-dandruff product since the 1930s, and for a good reason – it works! That’s why it is in all Head & Shoulders shampoos, making us the world’s number 1 shampoo*. Zinc pyrithione is the most tried and true solution. It’s an antifungal that is really excellent at fighting the source of dandruff. But, what if you need the heavy-duty stuff? Then, zinc pyrithione may not cut it for you. If you have tried products with Zinc pyrithione and that has not resolved your dandruff and scalp discomfort, you may have stubborn dandruff and may need a stronger Anti-Dandruff ingredient.
Coal tar works by slowing the rate at which the skin cells on your scalp die and slough off. If you skip a day of using coal tar, your dandruff may reappear because coal tar does nothing to address the underlying cause of dandruff. Coal tar also has a very strong odor, so it can be off-putting to some people. It works in the short term, but not without some side effects some people may find worrisome – like the odor.
Ketoconazole is the active ingredient in many prescription anti-dandruff shampoos. It is a heavy hitter. The biggest downside to Ketoconazole – besides the fact that you visit your doctor or dermatologist for a prescription – is that it can dry out your hair, making it hard to look your best and be presentable when going out, either to work, a family gathering, or the pub with your mates.
Selenium sulfide is an anti-fungal ingredient that not only fights existing fungus, but with a regular use it can actually prevent them from growing back. While doing this, selenium sulfide delivers another hit to dandruff by slowing the rate of skin cell death, preventing the accumulation of scaly dandruff particles on your scalp (and your clothes, of course). This means that it provides up to 7 days of protection against stubborn dandruff. This makes it ideal for people who experience stubborn dandruff and related scalp issues. If you’ve tried an anti-dandruff product but it just didn’t cut it for your stubborn dandruff, it may be time to upgrade to selenium sulfide.
Head & Shoulders’ new Clinically Proven Solutions line uses Selenium Sulfide, and combines it with hair conditioners and a new scent technology so with Clinically Proven Solutions there’s no ‘medicinal’ odor and your hair is left soft and easy to style (or run your fingers through!).
* P&G calculation based on Nielsen sales information July 2015 - June 2016.