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Types of Dandruff and How to Tackle Each

Do you feel embarrassed about dry dandruff visible on your clothes? Dandruff is a common scalp issue that causes itching and flaking. The chronic condition of the scalp is caused by dead and damaged skin cells that peel off and show up on the hair, shoulders, forehead and clothes in the form of ugly white flakes. They could cause inflammation and severe itching on the scalp and hamper your confidence!

In the article below, we have put together some general types of dandruff, their causes and some simple remedies and ways to tackle them. So scroll down to know how to combat this problem head-on!

types of dandruff in women

What are the different types of dandruff and their causes? 

Although dandruff may seem like a dry skin problem, it could also be caused by oily skin or skin diseases. Before you try to look for the best way to get rid of dandruff, you should know what type of dandruff you are dealing with. 

Dandruff can be broadly categorised into four types. 

  • Dry skin dandruff
  • Oily skin dandruff
  • Fungus-related dandruff
  • Disease-related dandruff

Dry Skin Dandruff

Dry skin dandruff gives out flakes that are tiny and white. A dry scalp can be itchy and shed dead skin cells. Here are some causes of dry skin dandruff.

  • Season: This common type of dandruff can get aggravated during the winter months. The cold, dry weather or indoor heating can cause the scalp to dehydrate and dry up, causing flaking. 
  • Hot water: Washing the hair with hot water can also cause the scalp to dry out. It reduces the natural oil content of the cells, causing dryness and damage.

Oily Skin Dandruff

There are glands below the surface of our skin, called sebaceous glands. These glands produce a natural oil called sebum. When there is excess production of sebum, it makes the scalp and hair oily. The excess oil accumulates to block the pores and collect dirt, irritating the scalp. This, in turn, can cause dandruff and itching. 

The flakes of oily skin dandruff are bigger and slightly yellowish. 

Fungus-Related Dandruff

Malassezia is a type of common fungus found on the skin of human beings. Some skin types may trigger an inflammation that produces dandruff or cause other conditions like eczema

Disease-Related Dandruff

Certain skin diseases like eczema, psoriasis, and seborrheic dermatitis, can affect the scalp causing dandruff. 

  • Seborrhoeic dermatitis:

    This is a skin condition that is a severe form of oily skin dandruff. It causes flaking, red patches and itching of the scalp. 

  • Eczema:

    This condition is also known as atopic dermatitis. It forms patches of flaky skin and an itchy scalp. It is also characterised by a red rash. This inflammatory condition produces large dry flakes of dandruff, and the skin will look red. 

  • Psoriasis:

    Psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder in which skin cells grow very fast, forming scaly, thick patches on the skin. Scalp psoriasis looks like fine, silver, powdery flakes. They may also be inflamed and raise scaly patches of silvery-white dead cell build-up.

Other Causes

  • Hygiene:

    Other causes of dandruff may include the accumulation of dirt and grime. Not shampooing the hair often enough will block the pores with impurities and cause an unhealthy scalp, resulting in dandruff. 
  • Sensitivity:

    This usually refers to the scalp’s sensitivity to hair care products. Strong chemicals, allergens and products which do not suit your skin type may cause dandruff. 

How to find out what kind of dandruff you have? 

Dandruff flakes may all seem the same, but if you look closely, you will find differences according to the different types. Dandruff varies due to different reasons and scalp conditions. You have to pay close attention to the appearance of the flakes, colour and size, the skin and hair condition and other possibly related symptoms. These will help you decipher what type of dandruff you have. 

how to stop dandruff

How To Stop Dandruff

Here are some general ways to treat each type of dandruff. If your condition is too severe, it is advised to consult a dermatologist. Lifestyle changes, anti-dandruff shampoos and proper hair care routines will curb and are the best way to get rid of dandruff.

Dry Skin Dandruff: Use an anti-dandruff shampoo to wash your hair. Give yourself regular oil massages to the scalp and hair to relieve itchiness and increase blood circulation. Try Coco Soul’s Dandruff Control Hair Oil, made with select Ayurvedic ingredients for hair care.

Oily Skin Dandruff: Try to manage your stress level and any kind of anxiety with the help of a medical practitioner. 

Fungus-related: Dandruff: A dermatologist can tell you how to stop dandruff. They can recommend the right treatment and medication.

Disease-related Dandruff: Consulting a doctor is a must.

  • A shampoo containing zinc pyrithione helps with seborrheic dermatitis.
  • A gentle moisturising shampoo helps eczema. This condition may also need some topical medicated treatment.
  • Corticosteroids may reduce psoriasis flare-ups. A shampoo containing zinc pyrithione or salicylic acid can help treat scalp psoriasis.

The easiest answer to how to stop dandruff is the Coco Soul Hair And Scalp Cleanser. This ayurvedic shampoo is enriched with the goodness of virgin coconut oil and Kikirindiya and Godapara herbs that keep your scalp dandruff-free. The shampoo is the best way to get rid of dandruff and is free from sulphates and paraben.


Dandruff is a common problem that we do not pay much attention to, therefore allowing it to be chronic and problematic. Dandruff can be treated with OTC anti-dandruff shampoos and good hair care. Dermatologists can treat various skin conditions. So the pesky flakes need not bother you any longer since now you know the types, causes and remedies of dandruff. 


  1. What are the first few things I can do to treat dandruff?

    Change your regular shampoo to an anti-dandruff shampoo. Also, make some lifestyle changes like stress reduction, healthy eating and sleeping. Include zinc and vitamin B in your diet. A proper hair care routine of oil massages, cleansing, and conditioning is necessary. 

  2. What ingredients must I look for in an OTC anti-dandruff shampoo?

    An anti-dandruff shampoo must contain Salicylic acid to control excess sebum, Selenium sulphide for reduction of oil production through the glands and zinc pyrithione to slow the growth of yeast fungi in the scalp.


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