Dandruff is a bane for every kind of hair texture, but it can be a nuisance when it comes to dense, curly hair. Even though straight hair sometimes tends to be drier than curly hair, it is easier to tame. If you’re looking for the best dandruff shampoos for curly hair, you are at the right place. While ordinary shampoos fail to offer deep cleaning of oily scalp, they further accumulate dirt and grease on your hair. As dry as curly hair usually is, using a dandruff control shampoo will target your scalp and cleanse it off dandruff and flakes without stripping it of natural oils. Laura Dale, a licensed cosmetologist and hair expert, says, “Dealing with curls and dandruff can be tough because curly hair tends to be more dry and most regular dandruff shampoos can feel drying on the hair. Opting for a dandruff shampoo specifically made for curls will keep your hair hydrated while helping with flakes.” Here’s a list of the 13 top anti-dandruff shampoos for your curly locks.
In This Article
13 Best Dandruff Control Shampoos for Curly Hair: Our 13 Top Picks(Reviews)
1. Best Overall: Nizoral A-D Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Nizoral A-D is one of the highest-rated over-the-counter anti-dandruff shampoos available. This clinically-proven formula contains 1% ketoconazole, which is an anti fungal ingredient. It helps treat stubborn dandruff for curly hair by binding with natural hair proteins. This medicated luxurious shampoo has a clean, fresh aroma. It not only helps relieve flaking, scaling, and itching associated with stubborn dandruff but also leaves your hair smelling great.
- Controls hair loss associated with stubborn dandruff
- Clinically-proven formula
- Refreshing smell
- Protects chemically treated hair
- Reduces dryness, itching, and redness of the scalp
- Lathers easily
- Makes hair manageable and shiny
- May make scalp and hair drier.
2. Best For Greasy Hair: Maple Holistics Tea Tree Shampoo
The Maple Holistics Tea Tree Shampoo is a clarifying shampoo that is infused with a plethora of natural essential oils like tea tree, jojoba, and argan oils to revive and revitalize wavy locks. Tea tree oil is an excellent antibacterial ingredient to fight dandruff and also lends soothing properties to the formula. It helps reduce the symptoms of itchiness, redness, and greasiness and makes your scalp clean and healthy. The dual blend of rosemary and lavender essential oil with tea tree oil enhances the healing and transformative properties of this gentle shampoo. Jojoba oil is rich in antioxidants and fatty acids that seal in moisture, reduce sebum formation, and protect the hair shaft from oxidative damage. Moroccan argan oil has emollient properties and is rich in vitamins A and E that strengthen, repair, and revive limp and lifeless hair. Take a look at this video on a tester’s experience to get more information on the product.
- Prevents hair loss
- Anti-itch formula
- Soothes an itchy and flaky scalp
- Makes hair manageable
- Contains natural vegan ingredients
- Money-back guarantee
- Dries the scalp quickly.
3. Best For Unruly Locks: Tea Tree Lavender Mint Moisturizing Shampoo
The Tea Tree Lavender Mint Moisturizing Shampoo is ideal for calming, cooling, and replenishing moisture to extremely dry, coarse, and unruly curly locks. This moisture-rich shampoo is infused with tea tree, lavender, and mint leaves, along with amino acids, to strengthen and nourish the hair shaft. Tea tree and mint leaves have antibacterial and antifungal properties that help get rid of dandruff and other scalp issues. If you have an oily, flaky scalp, the blend of tea tree with mint oil is an excellent remedy for reducing itchiness. It also increases blood flow and promotes healthy hair growth, and is ideal for coarse and dry hair. The soothing and refreshing smell of lavender uplifts your mood.
- Suitable for greasy scalp
- Reduces flakes
- Provides a cooling effect
- Locks in moisture
- 100% vegan
Nizoral A-D Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Maple Holistics Tea Tree Shampoo
Best For Greasy Hair
Tea Tree Lavender Mint Moisturizing Shampoo
Best For Unruly Locks
|Oily, Wavy, Curly, Dry, Fine
|Ideal for Coarse and Dry Hair
|1.54 x 2.99 x 7.17 inches
|2.5 x 2.5 x 7.7 inches
|2.25 x 2.25 x 5.94 inches
4. Best Drugstore Option: Head and Shoulders Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
The Head and Shoulders Shampoo is a popular choice to alleviate dandruff and itchy scalp. It is a dermatologist-recommended and clinically proven formula that reduces fungal growth. The active antifungal ingredient of this clinical strength shampoo is 1% selenium sulfide. This ingredient combats severe dandruff and is an effective solution for scalp diseases. This OTC shampoo is perfect for a greasy scalp and hair restorative care. It removes excess oil and provides relief from dandruff symptoms, like itching, flaking, redness, and inflammation. Using the shampoo twice a week or as directed by the physician can give you the desired results.
- Clinically proven formula
- Dermatologist recommended
- Retards cell growth of dandruff-causing fungi
- Moisturizes hair
- Soothes hair follicles
- Nourishes chemically treated hair
- Contains sulfates
- Unpleasant smell
- May leave the hair dry.
5. Best For Daily Use: Head and Shoulders Moisture Boost Shampoo
Give your curly, wavy locks a royal treatment with essential oils. The Head and Shoulders Moisture Boost Shampoo is a perfect choice of daily shampoo to balance the pH and ensure a healthier scalp. The creamy, rich lather deeply cleanses while nourishing the hair roots with moisturizing ingredients and relieves dry, itchy scalp. The active ingredients of this royal mask include pyrithione zinc (0.5%) and coconut oil. The pyrithione zinc is antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory. It reduces scalp infection and stubborn dandruff and protects hair strands from oxidative damage. The infused coconut oil is rich in vitamins and essential fatty acids that seal moisture in the hair and scalp.
- No added dyes
- Works well for curly kinky hair
- Provides intense moisturization
- Long-lasting scalp relief
- Safe for regular use
- Strong smell
6. Best Scalp pH Balancing Shampoo: Maple Holistics Cedarwood Dandruff Shampoo
The Maple Holistics Cedarwood Clarifying Dandruff Shampoo soothes a dry, itchy, and flaky scalp and restores nourishment and moisture to maintain healthy hair and scalp. It contains natural oils that soothe and calm itchy scalp while managing thick curly hair. This dry scalp treatment shampoo contains 96% natural ingredients and is infused with tea tree oil, argan oil, and cedarwood essential oil.
Tea tree oil possesses antimicrobial properties and is rich in antioxidants that penetrate the hair follicles, reducing irritation, and minimizing the signs of dandruff. Glycerin in this antimicrobial shampoo is free of toxins and helps hydrate the scalp and hair. Moroccan argan oil and jojoba oil are deep moisturizers that provide a protective shield for locking in moisture and nourishment. Cedarwood essential oil balances the pH of the scalp, absorbs excess oil, and clarifies the scalp for a restorative experience.
- Suitable for sensitive scalp
- Reduces symptoms of itchy scalp
- Reduces hair fall
- Strong smell
- May leave the hair dry.
7. Best Biotin Formula: purad’or Scalp Therapy Shampoo
The purad’or ScalpTherapy Shampoo hydrates and nourishes the hair and scalp. It is formulated with nourishing ingredients tea tree oil, lemon peel oil, argan oil, and a hair strengthening biotin formula that helps tame frizzy hair. The blend of peppermint, tea tree, and lavender oils is antiseptic, antibacterial, and antifungal. It reduces dandruff by inhibiting the growth of fungus, removing the scalp debris, and soothing the scalp for a The rejuvenating and nourishing argan oil strengthens the hair shaft and moisturizes the hair follicles, giving you healthy, manageable waves.
- Infused with rare exotic natural ingredients
- Non-toxic BPA-free bottle
- Minimizes dryness and itching
- Non-irritating formula
- Reduces itchy flakes
- Clarifies scalp and hair strands
- Reduces frizz and static
- Safe for all hair types
8. Best In Dermatologically Tested: Free & Clear Medicated Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
The Free & Clear Medicated Anti-Dandruff Shampoo is a dermatologically tested formula that is safe for sensitive skin. It comes with the strength of 2% zinc pyrithione, which has antibacterial and antifungal properties. This shampoo kills the fungus that causes stubborn dandruff and provides relief from itchy, flaky, and dry scalp. Check this video to learn more about the product.
- Free of dyes
- Free from artificial fragrances
- Treats seborrheic dermatitis
- Maintains the pH of scalp
- Best for sensitive scalp
- May weaken the hair roots
9. Best For Itchy Scalp: Denorex Therapeutic 2-in-1 Dandruff Shampoo
The Denorex Therapeutic 2-in-1 Dandruff Shampoo penetrates into the scalp to provide relief from dandruff and its related symptoms. The active ingredients of this hydrating shampoo are 1.8% coal tar and 1.5% methanol that reduces the development of dandruff, stops the growth of fungus and removes debris. It provides relief from itchiness, soreness, inflammation, and controls excess sebum production. Methanol soothes the scalp from redness and irritation. This vitamin-enriched shampoo both heals and nourishes curly hair strands.
- Moisturizes dry scalp
- Heals itchy scalp
- Treats seborrheic dermatitis and psoriasis
- Comes with a built-in conditioner
- No lather formation
- Burning sensation to eyes
10. Best Salon-Quality Option: BIOLAGE Scalpsync Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
The BIOLAGE Scalpsync Anti-Dandruff Shampoo is infused with 1% pyrithione zinc that helps remove dandruff flakes and treat dry scalp. It provides relief from itching, redness, soreness, and inflammation. This OTC shampoo for dandruff is infused with mint that has anti fungal and antibacterial properties. It cleanses the scalp thoroughly and imparts a cooling sensation. This salon-quality anti-dandruff shampoo is safe for color-treated hair and manages the unruly curls and coils easily. It may also help relieve scalp bumps. The reviewers have left positive feedback for the product and testified that it softens the hair and eliminates flakes just after a wash.
- Cleanses the scalp
- Contains antifungal and antibacterial properties
- Safe for color-treated hair
- Reduces scalp bumps
- Removes scalp debris
- Provides a deep cleansing effect
- Seals in the moisture
- Smells great
- Manages curly locks
- Contains sulfates
- Contains parabens
- Leaves the hair greasy
11. Best For Curly Hair: Puriya Sulfate Free Tea Tree Oil Shampoo
The Puriya Scalp Clarifying Shampoo is a plant-based moisturizer that is effective in reducing scalp itchiness, dryness, and stubborn dandruff. It is blended with the botanical extracts of arnica, sage, and rosemary along with tea tree oil that works synergistically to purify, strengthen, and heal the scalp.
This doctor-approved pH-balanced formula is gentle enough for daily use to manage the curls and coils and is also safe for use on colored hair. Arnica oil is a holistic treatment for dandruff. The antibacterial and anti-fungal properties reduce scalp inflammation, redness, and irritation. It effectively clears sebum oil and removes debris and dead skin cells for a clean and healthy scalp. Sage and tea tree oil are antiseptics that heal the irritated scalp and protect it from environmental aggressors. This paraben-free shampoo penetrates deep into the hair follicles and moisturizes limp and lifeless hair.
- Best for curly and kinky hair
- Gentle formula
- Free from mineral oils
- Safe for scalp diseases
- No added artificial fragrances
- Prevents breakage and split ends
- Clarifying anti-dandruff shampoo
- Safe for daily use
12. Best Creamy Texture: Mizani Scalp Care Shampoo
The Mizani Scalp Care Shampoo treats your dry scalp and is also curl-friendly. This all-rounder shampoo cleanses, nourishes, and soothes your hair and scalp to restore its natural balance. The active ingredient of this shampoo is pyrithione zinc that cleanses the scalp thoroughly and eliminates excess bacteria caused by flaking and scaling. It is infused with peppermint oil that soothes the scalp and cucumber extracts that relieves scalp discomfort with its coolness. This moisturizing formula also prevents dryness without stripping the natural moisture of your hair. It suits all textures and improves hair health, and adds nourishment and shine.
- Creamy texture
- Pleasant scent
- Suitable for all curl types
- Prevents dryness
- Enhances curl definition
- Cleanses and soothes
- Contains sulfates
13. Best Itch-Free Formula: KAMEDIS Scalp Control Dandruff Therapy Shampoo
The KAMEDIS Scalp Control Dandruff Therapy Shampoo treats dandruff and relieves scalp itchiness and irritation. It contains 1.0% zinc pyrithione, a potent ingredient that effectively treats dandruff-related symptoms like flaky, scaly, itchy, irritated, or red scalp. It also contains salicylic acid that exfoliates your scalp and breaks down stubborn dandruff, buildups, excess oils, and dead skin cells. Additionally, the dermatologist-recommended formula is enriched with Sapindus mukurossi which treats inflammation and eliminates bacterial and pore-clogging scalp buildup. The shampoo has a creamy, mild-foaming formula that is safe for toddlers aged three and above and is also effective for adults, especially those with sensitive skin or allergies.
- Suitable for all hair types
- Safe for toddlers
- Exfoliating formula
- Creamy texture
- Mild foaming formula
- Clinically proven
- May take time to work
Infographic: Dandruff Shampoo For Curly Hair: Ingredients And Tips For Application
Dandruff shampoos contain ingredients that curb the spread of the yeast-like fungus, Malassezia, that feeds on scalp oils. Some ingredients are listed in the infographic below that take care of your tresses and keep them dandruff-free. There’s also a section on how you can apply a dandruff shampoo on curly tresses correctly. Check it out!
Dandruff is one of the most common hair problems out there. It may be caused due to various factors like oily scalp, dry skin, improper hair hygiene, or skin conditions. While most dandruff shampoos do the work effectively, they tend to dry the hair and scalp. Now, with the best anti-dandruff shampoos for curly hair, you can get rid of dandruff without drying your strands and causing a head full of frizz. You can opt for the Nizoral A-D Anti-Dandruff Shampoo to reduce itching with a mild fragrance, or the pura d’or Scalp Therapy Shampoo to soothe the scalp and remove excess debris, or the BIOLAGE Scalpsync Anti-Dandruff Shampoo for greater hair manageability and relief from inflammation. While most of these shampoos are sulfate and paraben-free, some are also color-safe and perfect for your color-treated curls. There are some dermatologist-tested products too that are helpful for seborrheic dermatitis and psoriasis.
How To Choose The Right Anti-Dandruff Shampoo For Curly Hair
- An anti-dandruff shampoo should contain salicylic acid, selenium sulfide, ketoconazole, pyrithione zinc, or coal tar among the active ingredients. These help remove stubborn dandruff.
- You can choose natural botanical extracts like coconut oil, olive oil, honey, ginger extract, tea tree extract, and other essential oils to cleanse and moisturize the scalp.
- Choose a shampoo that thoroughly cleanses the scalp and soaks excess oil without stripping the natural oils.
- Your chosen shampoo should be specifically catering to thick curls.
- Pick a chemical-free, paraben-free formulation for the most effective results.
Curly hair looks gorgeous, but it could be hard to maintain too. Dandruff is one common issue with curls as it goes unnoticed. These shampoos can help resolve that problem. With the use of the best dandruff control shampoos listed above, you will not only be targeting dandruff, but also nourish, moisturize, and revitalize your curly locks. Pick your favorite shampoo from this list. Your curls will thank you soon!
Why Trust Stylecraze?
The author, Oyendrila Kanjilal, has extensive knowledge on hair care. After carefully researching and browsing online reviews, she has curated a list of the best dandruff shampoos for curly hair. According to her, these shampoos thoroughly cleanse the scalp and soak excess oil without stripping the natural oils. In addition, the products listed here are paraben-free, prevent dryness, and make your hair manageable and shiny.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is curly hair more prone to dandruff?
Yes, curly hair is more prone to dandruff. Thick curly hair can hide the visible signs of dandruff by stopping flakes from falling onto the shoulders. Thick curls are also most susceptible to bacterial infections.
How often should curly hair be washed?
Curly hair with dandruff needs to be washed at least twice a week. Doing so deep cleanses the scalp and also heals it.
How do you get rid of dandruff naturally in curly hair?
To get rid of dandruff naturally, try using lightweight oils such as coconut oil and olive oil. You can also do an apple cider vinegar rinse and apply aloe vera to exfoliate and soothe the scalp.
Are there any dandruff shampoos for curly hair that won’t make hair dry and crummy?
The Maple Holistics Tea Tree Shampoo, the Tea Tree Lavender Mint Moisturizing Shampoo, and the purad’or ScalpTherapy Shampoo are some of the best dandruff shampoos that do not make the hair dry and crummy.
Can you use medicated dandruff shampoo regularly on curly hair?
No, medicated shampoos are not for regular use. Use it a maximum of twice a week in case of severe dandruff and scalp issues, otherwise once a week is enough for a cleansed dandruff-free scalp.
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