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Use These Essential Oils for Dry Scalp

Written by Robbie Salter
Use These Essential Oils for Dry Scalp

Have you noticed more talk of essential oils recently? It’s starting to feel impossible to ignore advertisements and influencers touting diffusers, lotions, and supplements that include these natural ingredients. Many claim they’re the cure-all for hair care issues like a dry scalp or strand breakage. Wondering if they’re worth the hype? The truth is everyone is different and our scalps and hair react to products in different ways.

What we can tell you is what the science says on how essential oils can help soothe the effects of a dry scalp. Keep reading to discover which essential oils can relieve itchiness, flaking, and irritation.

Why Is My Head So Itchy? A Guide to Your Dry Scalp

Ever gone through a phase where your head just won’t stop itching? It can be maddening to constantly scratch away at your hairline. Before we get into essential oils to soothe those symptoms, let’s explore what makes our scalp dry, as it can be different for everyone.

The health of our head depends on many factors like your skin and hair type, the climate around you, your diet, how often you shower, and the products you use. Knowing what triggers your dry scalp can help inform how you choose to treat it. 

So take a look at the list of questions below and see what applies to you:

Are you using a shampoo with sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium laureth sulfate?

The first step in hair care is to take a walk to the shower and read the ingredients label on your products. Sulfates are found in most drugstore shampoos. They’re what make the product lather and they’re pretty good at cleaning out the roots of your hair. 

In fact, they’re a little too good, often stripping your scalp of the natural oils it needs to maintain balance in its microbiome.

Are you washing too often?

As you can imagine, especially if you’re using a shampoo that includes sulfates, washing your hair too often can lead to dryness and breakage. As the sulfates strip your scalp of the natural oils wash after wash, your scalp can dry out.

Are you washing too little?

On the other hand, washing infrequently can allow for a build-up of oils. This can be uncomfortable and when paired with a yeast overgrowth can actually cause dandruff, itching, and general scalp discomfort.

Are you eating differently or not enough?

Like the rest of our body, our scalp relies on the nutrition our diet provides it. When we’re stressed and eating unhealthily, our head knows it and it can result in dryness and flaking. Our hair is mostly protein and a protein-rich diet can help fortify and strengthen hair. 

Regardless of what’s causing the itch, the good news is that there are many known soothing solutions, and essential oils are probably the best smelling options out there.

Quick Reminder: A Dry Scalp Does Not Necessarily Mean Dandruff

While they can manifest in a lot of the same ways, dandruff and a dry scalp aren’t one and the same. Dandruff is what happens when your body’s natural process of shedding skin cells gets out of balance. Usually associated with an overgrowth of the naturally occurring yeast called Malassezia, skin cells build up and flake off in larger chunks.

Dry scalp can be a contributing factor in dandruff but it’s not necessarily the same condition. 

Most people who experience a dry scalp will feel itching, irritation, and yes, flaking. But these flakes will be lighter and smaller than those experiencing dandruff. For the purposes of this post, we’re going to focus on dry scalp. 

The truth is, no homemade remedy can treat dandruff. If you’re experiencing those big, oily flakes, you should instead search for a Zinc Pyrithione-based dandruff shampoo.

(Like Jupiter’s Balancing Shampoo formulated with Zinc Pyrithione and a host of natural ingredients that support a healthy scalp. Check it out here..)

...always to search for products that include these oils as part of a professionally formulated hair or scalp care product.

Okay, So What Are Essential Oils?

So glad you asked.

Essential oils are concentrated extracts pulled from a variety of plants. They’re developed in a couple of ways, either by distilling the plant with steam or by pressing it, and they have a number of uses, from aromatherapy to topical treatment.

Which Essential Oils Can I Use To Treat a Dry Scalp?

If you’ve tried everything under the sun to help your dry scalp, it may be time to turn to Mother Nature with these five essential oils, known to help soothe and revive a dry scalp.


This purple and heavenly-scented essential oil is native to the Mediterranean and Southern France and pops up in many lotions and cosmetics. The lavender plant contains compounds known to help calm the skin. 

Tea Tree

Tea tree oil comes from our friends down under, extracted from a tree called Melaleuca alternifolia, native to New Zealand and Australia. It has been proven to fight fungal growth and may help to relieve some symptoms of psoriasis.


Beyond being a delicious inclusion in your home-cooked dinner, rosemary helps boost your skin and hair care. Its Essential oil contains antioxidant properties that may help our cells’ abilities to fight off damage and stress. 

In fact, its support of our immune system may even increase blood circulation and revive hair growth.


Like the oils we’ve mentioned so far, lemongrass contains antioxidant properties. It also can help address redness and swelling, which may manifest in irritated and itchy skin. Another benefit? It can help keep mosquitoes at bay.


Extracted from a type of citrus, bergamot also contains antioxidant properties. A 2015 study found it may help to control dandruff. It also contributes to silkier and smoother hair, making it a favorite among people with curly hair.

Bottom line: there are dozens and dozens of essential oils that all have pros and cons. Explore which one is right for you and suits your needs and preferences, and then look for professionally formulated products that include them. 

Heads Up: Use Essential Oils With Caution

We’re pretty sensitive when it comes to scalp talk and so we want to include a few notes on using essential oils. 

Our recommendation is always to search for products that include these oils as part of a professionally formulated hair or scalp care product, rather than applying them on their own. If you’re wondering why:

  • These are highly concentrated liquids and shouldn’t be slathered on your skin without some buffers. Without being properly diluted, essential oils can clog pores and may even lead to irritation.

  • You can’t always predict how your scalp will react to an essential oil or any new product for that matter. Try a test patch on a small piece of your skin to ensure you don’t have any hidden allergies or sensitivities. 

Essential Oils Help You Achieve a Healthier, Happier Scalp

For many of us, our journey to a moisturized and nourished scalp is long, winding, and sometimes confusing. The truth is our hair and skin change over time and sometimes the solutions you use for one symptom can cause another. 

But in the spirit of self-care, we always encourage you to keep exploring new options, especially ones that are kinder to your skin and hair. Opt for products with whole ingredients that are scientifically formulated to address your scalp’s needs and health.

Essential oils can be, well, essential to helping abate the growth of fungus and soothing redness and irritation. It certainly does not hurt that they’ll make your nose happy too.

Check out Jupiter’s line of scalp healthy hair care products. Each product in the line was formulated with scalp-healthy oils like lavender, rosemary, and spearmint and get to soothing that dry, itchy scalp. You deserve it.

Flake-Free Duo
Flake-Free Duo

Our best-selling duo! The medicated Shampoo tends to your dandruff while the Conditioner’s combo of colloidal oatmeal and coconut oil moisturizes your scalp and hair. Safe for everyday use. Check out the Advanced Oil Control Trio if you flake on the regular and could use a bit more control.

Travelling? Check out our Weekender Capsules for on-the-go scalp care.

The information contained in this article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice, nor is it a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician with any questions you may have about the information contained herein, as well as the risks or benefits of any treatment.