When it comes to my everyday beauty routine, skincare is one of my top priorities. I’ve spent hours (and a ton of money) creating the perfect line-up of face wash, toner, and moisturizer for my dry, sensitive skin. So, when the skinification of hair started trending, I began seeing my hair care routine in a whole new light.
After doing research and speaking with salon professionals, I've learned that just like your skin, your mane needs the same personalized TLC to look glossy, nourished, and healthy. If you’re truly looking to skin-ify your hair routine, you need to begin at the root—and that means paying extra attention to your scalp. After all, your scalp is skin, so it deserves just as much love as the rest of your body!
Looking to make your hair routine more scalp-centric? Whether you’re dealing with common scalp woes such as dryness and dandruff or simply want to pay more attention to it, this is everything you need to know about how to build the ultimate scalp care routine.
Is a healthy scalp necessary for healthy hair?
Think of it this way: Your hair is an extension of your scalp (literally). While overall hair care is important for achieving and maintaining a strong, healthy mane, your scalp is the foundation of healthy hair growth. If your scalp isn’t in its best condition, the look and feel of your hair will reflect that. That’s why, along with your regular hair care, we recommend adding a few scalp care products as well as specific scalp care steps in your routine.
Signs Of An Unhealthy Scalp
If you’re experiencing itchiness, flakes, redness, irritation, excess oil, or a product buildup, this could be a sign that your scalp isn’t in the best condition. Before creating a scalp care routine, you’ll need to figure out exactly what scalp woes you need to target. When in doubt, consult your stylist or a dermatologist who can help you figure out the best routine for you.
Want to learn more about healthy scalp tips for your specific scalp concerns? Read on for our best tips and products, including a scalp exfoliator for product buildup and the best shampoo for oily scalp.
How To Care For Your Scalp
Give your oily scalp a deep clean.
If you’re prone to oily roots, it’s likely caused by overactive sebaceous glands (the glands that produce your hair’s natural oils) on the scalp. Sebum is constantly being produced, which helps keep your hair and scalp hydrated naturally. An excessive amount of sebum, however, can cause oily hair and roots. This can be caused by product buildup and environmental factors. It can also be caused by over shampooing. This may sound counterintuitive, but every time you wash your hair with shampoo it signals your scalp to produce more sebum, which can lead to oiliness.
So, what’s an oily-haired girl to do? First things first: You’ll want to pick up a scalp-balancing shampoo like Kérastase Specifique Bain Divalent Shampoo. This silicone-free formula deeply cleanses and purifies the scalp by removing excess oil and odor. It’s made with ingredients like Amino Acid and Vitamin B6 to help nourish your strands and leave you with softer, shinier hair.
For those with oily roots and dry ends, pick up a weekly cleansing clay, like Kérastase Specifique Argile Equilibrante Cleansing Clay. This intensely purifying formula gently cleanses the scalp by removing sebum, pollution particles, and impurities while keeping your strands nourished. It even helps boost volume if greasy roots weigh your mane down!
Aside from adding products for oily scalps to your hair routine, you’ll also want to ensure that your hair tools are squeaky clean. Hair brushes and hot tools can hold onto product residue and oil, which can transfer onto your mane. For best results, be sure to clean your tools once a week.
Moisturize your scalp.
Dealing with dry scalp and dandruff? Start your routine with a shampoo and conditioner like Mizani Scalp Care Shampoo and Conditioner. This luxurious nourishing system restores moisture balance to the hair and the scalp and contains 1 percent pyrithione zinc to help control scalp flaking, scaling, and itching. Peppermint oil also provides relief, and cucumber extract works to soothe an irritated scalp.
Now that your mane is squeaky clean, your scalp may still be in need of a little extra moisture. Once you step out of the shower, use a scalp serum like Kérastase Serum Extentioniste Scalp And Hair Serum. This formula helps create visibly stronger hair from root to tip. Ingredients like ceramide and creatine R help enhance shine, retain moisture, and reinforce hair structure.
If you have dandruff, we recommend also adding Mizani’s Scalp Care Calming Lotion to your routine. Formulated with menthol, eucalyptus oil, aloe, and avocado oil, this product nourishes and soothes to help maintain scalp comfort.
Exfoliate your scalp.
No matter what scalp concerns you’re dealing with (or even if you aren’t dealing with any at all), a scalp exfoliator is essential for a healthy hair routine—here’s why: Just like with the skin on the rest of your body, exfoliating your scalp can remove dry patches and flakes. It can also eliminate product build-up and excess sebum that can clog your hair follicles.
If you’re dealing with excess oil or product build-up, use a formula like Kérastase Scrub Energisant Deep Cleaning Fusio Dose Scrub. If you have an itchy, irritated scalp, we recommend a soothing formula like Kérastase Scrub Apaisant Deep Clean Fusio Dose Scrub.
Massage your scalp.
You may not be able to get that in-salon scalp massage your stylist gives you at the shampoo bowl, but an at-home scalp massage can be just as effective! In fact, a scalp massage can help to increase circulation in your scalp and promote healthy hair growth. Not to mention, it’s an easy way to de-stress!
While you’re shampooing, use your fingertips to gently massage your scalp in a circular motion beginning at the front and working your way towards the back. If you don’t want to use your fingers, you can also purchase a handheld scalp massager.
Protect your scalp from the sun.
Your scalp and hair are constantly being exposed to the sun in your daily life. We all know about the damaging effects UV rays can have on our skin, but our scalps are often ignored when we’re applying our daily SPF products.
If you’re planning on being in the sun for a long period of time, be sure to sit under an umbrella, wear a hat, or apply products that protect your hair from the sun throughout your scalp and hair. We love the Kérastase Soleil range. Even if you’re spending most of your time indoors, the sun that comes through your window can still have the same effects on your strands—so it’s important to always use sun-protecting products!
With our expert healthy scalp tips and product picks, you’re fully equipped to care for your scalp the right way!
Interested in more healthy scalp tips? Use our salon locator to book an appointment at a salon near you.