Find out more about the cause of dandruff, how it works and some of the factors that could put you at risk of a flake flare-up
The cause of dandruff is a naturally-occurring microbe on the scalp called Malassezia Globosa.
You’ll find it on everybody’s scalp, although it will only cause dandruff in around 50% of people.
Here’s how it works:
Malassezia globosa feeds on natural scalp oils called sebum – this oil is what keeps your hair and scalp moisturized
Oleic acid is created when the sebum is broken down
Oleic acid irritates the scalp in about 1 in 2 people are who are sensitive to it
The scalp becomes inflamed, red and itchy
Skin sheds faster than usual – this is the body’s attempt to get rid of the irritant. Increased skin shedding is what causes visible flakes to appear on the scalp, hair, and shoulders
Other factors that can affect dandruff
While the root cause of dandruff is always the same, there are certain factors that can exacerbate a problem or make it seem worse.
These include seasonal factors in summer and winter, external irritants like pollution and damage caused by our own actions such as too much heat-styling the hair.