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Are you experiencing the signs and symptoms of a sensitive scalp? Could it be something serious, or is it treatable at home? The experts at Babo Botanicals have got you covered when it comes to identifying and treating scalp sensitivity!

At Babo Botanicals, we’re all about choosing natural ingredients to solve our hair and skin ailments. We know that sensitive skin is a common issue, and scalp sensitivity is something that will affect many of us at some point in our lives.

Keep reading to learn about what causes scalp sensitivity and our favorite natural ways to treat it!

What Causes Scalp Sensitivity?

young kid itching her sensitive scalp

Too Much Heat

One of the most common (and easily treatable) causes of a sensitive scalp is too much heat exposure.

This can come from a variety of sources including the sun, styling tools such as hair dryers and hair straighteners, and hot showers.

Avoid sunburn on your scalp by adding a hat to your outfit, and cut back on using hot tools on your hair by opting for heatless styles on most days.

Finally, ditch the scalding-hot showers for lukewarm water to minimize sensitivity — your scalp will thank you!

Harsh Chemicals

Many hair products are packed with harsh chemicals that can easily irritate an already sensitive scalp.

Sulfates, parabens, and synthetic fragrances are a big no-no when it comes to treating scalp sensitivity, so it’s important to reach for a natural fragrance shampoo instead.

 kids at the pool with hats on to protect their sensitive scalp

If you’re anything like us and you love a good swim during the warmer months, you may also experience scalp sensitivity as a result of chlorine and other chemicals found in pool water.

Even natural saltwater at the beach can dry out your scalp and cause irritation!

Try our Swim & Sport Conditioner to detangle, repair, and protect your and your little one’s hair after going to the pool, playground, or beach.

Product Build-Up

If you’re a fan of dry shampoo, listen up! Overuse of this product can quickly cause a residue build-up, which can lead to clogged pores, itchiness, and even more excess oil production.

Make sure you’re not using dry shampoo as a substitute for in-shower washes. Just like the rest of your skin, your scalp requires the right balance of washing to avoid clogged pores and remove dead skin without overwashing, which may cause dryness.

A build-up of unrinsed conditioner is just as bad for scalp health. When conditioning, focus primarily on the ends of your hair rather than the roots to avoid product build-up in the shower. 

Person at the hair salon getting their hair washed

Head Lice

Eek, the ‘L’ word!

While head lice are commonly associated with school-aged children, they can burden older children and adults of any age just as easily if you come into close contact with an infected individual.

The easiest way to determine if you have head lice is to lather conditioner into detangled, dry hair. Comb through the conditioner using a specially designed Lice Comb and wipe the excess onto a paper towel.

If you spot any small, oval-shaped eggs or the lice themselves, it’s time to start treating your hair and scalp with the right kind of shampoo!

Lice Prevention Essentials Kit for a Sensitive Scalp

Our Lice Repel Shampoo contains a powerful blend of rosemary, tea tree, thyme, and mint to stop lice in their tracks and kill eggs fast.

Our lice comb and shampoo are also available in a convenient Lice Prevention Essentials Kit along with our Lice Repel & Prevent Conditioning Spray to make lice treatment a swift, painless experience.

Skin Conditions

If you’ve been experiencing a sensitive scalp for some time, you may be wondering whether something more serious is at play.

A variety of scalp conditions can cause sensitivity and symptoms such as pain, itching, and inflammation. Folliculitis and psoriasis are among the most common skin conditions that may affect your scalp.

Folliculitis is an infection of hair follicles and manifests as small, pimple-like bumps on the scalp. Psoriasis appears as sore, reddish patches accompanied by dandruff-like flaking on the outermost layer. Both conditions require medical intervention to be relieved.

Consult with your doctor if your scalp sensitivity isn’t clearing up with the simple lifestyle changes and natural remedies outlined in this post.

3 Signs Of A Sensitive Scalp

Woman with a bun itching her head


The most common sign of a sensitive scalp is itching. This frustrating symptom is present in many cases of scalp sensitivity and may be the first sign you notice.

As with sensitive skin anywhere on your body, itching generally means your skin is lacking moisture and may be irritated by a particular ingredient in a product you consistently use.

Take note of any changes in hair care products or lifestyle changes and you may just identify the culprit of your scalp sensitivity!

Inflammation Or Redness

Inflammation or redness is associated with many scalp conditions. You may initially notice this sign as your scalp feeling tight, and you may even experience headaches as a result.

If you have open sores on your scalp, you may experience stinging or burning sensations as products come into contact with your scalp.

This sign of scalp sensitivity is particularly painful and may indicate an underlying condition or infection that requires medical advice to treat. Talk to your doctor if you’re experiencing inflammation of your scalp.

Dry Or Flaky Patches

If you’ve noticed small flakes of skin shedding from your scalp accompanied by intense itchiness, your sensitivity is likely caused by dandruff.

Also known as cradle cap, dandruff is a common scalp concern that is easily treatable with natural remedies and simple lifestyle changes.

If the flaky patches on your scalp are particularly red or feel scaly, you may be experiencing psoriasis. As recommended earlier in this post, it’s best to see your doctor if you’re unsure.

4 Natural Ways To Treat A Sensitive Scalp 

Coconut oil for a sensitive scalp

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has lots of uses, from cooking to oral health care.

It has long been used to treat skin ailments like dry skin, so it’s no surprise that coconut oil also has incredible benefits for your hair and scalp thanks to its antimicrobial and antifungal properties.

While applying coconut oil directly to your scalp is an option for relieving sensitivity, it can result in super oily hair very quickly! Instead, opt for shampoos and conditioners that contain coconut oil as an ingredient.

Our Smoothing Detangling Conditioner is the perfect addition to your hair care routine if you’re experiencing scalp sensitivity.

Packed full of hydrating ingredients, this conditioner is specially formulated to soothe your scalp while adding moisture to your hair.

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is well-known to ease the discomfort of sunburn, but what you may not know is that it’s also useful for alleviating the symptoms of scalp sensitivity. It reduces inflammation and may even assist in reducing flakiness and itchiness.

Our Swim & Sport Conditioner is great for moisturizing parched hair! This revitalizing conditioner contains Babassu Oil and Provitamin B5 to detangle, repair, and protect hair.

Baking Soda

It might sound strange, but baking soda is a cheap yet effective way of reducing the symptoms associated with scalp sensitivity.

When lathered onto the scalp as a paste, it can reduce itchiness and assist in treating dandruff due to its antifungal properties.

Simply mix a small amount of baking soda with water to create a paste. Apply the paste to your scalp when your hair is wet and massage in.

Let it sit for a few minutes and then give your hair a thorough rinse and continue to shampoo as normal. Voila!

Essential Oils

Essential oils are not only useful for making your home smell amazing — they’re also great for relieving scalp sensitivity!

Like coconut oil, you can apply essential oils directly to your scalp (once they’ve been safely diluted, of course). For a less messy option, choose hair care products that contain essential oils as an active ingredient.

Our Lice Repel Shampoo isn’t just for treating lice! As it contains spearmint, rosemary, lemongrass, and tea tree oils, it’s perfect for adding a healthy dose of natural essential oils into your scalp care regimen to reduce sensitivity.

Say Goodbye To Your Sensitive Scalp!

Swim & Sport Conditioner for a sensitive scalp

Having a sensitive scalp can be a frustrating and sometimes painful experience. Symptoms like itching, inflammation, and flaking are signs that you’re experiencing scalp sensitivity.

Choose products containing coconut oil and aloe vera, such as our Lice Repel Shampoo and Swim & Sport Conditioner, to set yourself up for optimum scalp health.

Always opt for natural remedies when treating scalp sensitivity to avoid further irritation, and be sure to consult your doctor if your symptoms persist.

With these tips in mind, you’ll wave goodbye to your sensitive scalp in no time!