How To Use Olive Oil To Treat Dandruff

Learn to use this nourishing plant-oil and get rid of the pesky problem once and for all.

Reviewed by Precious Rutlin, CAHP-BC
By Anjali Sayee

Olive oil is considered the greatest natural remedy for maintaining hair health. This oil is nutritious and filled with antioxidants, plus it can work wonders as hair oil. But, can you use olive oil to treat dandruff? Olive oil can certainly help with dandruff, but that is not the only advantage of applying it to your hair. This excellent ingredient may be used to treat various hair issues, and you will see a difference as soon as you apply it. Continue reading to understand the ways olive oil can help with dandruff and how to incorporate it into your hair care regimen.

Is Olive Oil Effective Against Dandruff?

Woman with itchy head due to dandruff

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Yes! Olive oil is one of the best ingredients you could use to treat dandruff. The oil is effective and efficient to the point where you start noticing the improvement from the first use. Following, I’ve put together the benefits of olive oil for hair.

1. Fights Dandruff

Olive oil is one of the best natural conditioners that you can find for your hair (1). Unlike regular store-bought conditioners, which only clog and irritate your scalp, olive oil will help moisturize a dry scalp and will soothe flaking.

2. Unclogs Follicles

Olive oil has antioxidant and antibacterial properties, which make it a good hair cleanser (2), (3). Cleansers are used to remove the build-up that is clogging the hair follicles. Another study showed that olive oil penetrates through hair fibers and protects the hair from within (4). Clogged follicles (from the dirt and grime) can lead to scalp irritation and dandruff (5). Olive oil is light and helps dissolve all the dirt, excess oils, and grime that are present on your scalp. This helps unclog the follicles as well as nourish them so that hair can grow without a hitch, minimizing scalp irritation.

3. Prevents Damage

Olive oil helps reduce hair damage and trichoptilosis, or split ends (1). Regular use of olive oil can help boost scalp and hair health by preventing damage. This is owed to olive oil’s rich antioxidant properties that help minimize oxidative damage (2).

4. Conditions Hair

Olive oil can also be used as a hair conditioner as it penetrates the hair fiber  (1), (2). The oil contains mono-unsaturated fats that nourish your hair (6). Thus, it may leave your hair feeling silky, soft, and frizz-free.

Now that you know how beneficial olive oil is for your hair, check out how you can use it to treat dandruff.

How To Use Olive Oil For Dandruff Treatment

  1. Egg And Olive Oil Hair Mask For Dandruff
Woman applying egg and olive oil mask on hair

Shutterstock

Egg whites contain enzymes that kill bacteria and prevent infection (7). This helps keep your scalp healthy while warding off dandruff. Eggs also help nourish your hair with their high protein content (8).

You Will Need
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Shower cap
Prep Time

5 minutes

Processing Time

20 minutes

Process
  • In a bowl, beat the white of one egg with two tablespoons of olive oil. Ensure that the egg is cold to contain the smell.
  • Apply this mixture onto your scalp and then work it down to the tips of your hair.
  • Once your scalp and hair are covered in the mixture, cover your hair with a shower cap to avoid a mess.
  • Wait for about 20 minutes.
  • After 20 minutes have passed, wash your hair with cool water and a mild sulfate-free shampoo. Avoid using warm or hot water as it might ‘cook’ the egg.
  • Finish with conditioner. Ensure that you apply the conditioner from the mid-lengths of your hair without touching your scalp.
How Often?

1-2 times a week.

Stylecraze Says
You can also add 1 teaspoon of baking soda in the mixture for its oil-absorbing properties.

2. Olive Oil And Almond Oil For Dandruff

Almond oil has anti-inflammatory properties (9). Therefore, it may help soothe scalp irritation and dandruff. In combination with olive oil, it also helps soften the flakes and dissolve excess oil and dirt, thus unclogging your hair follicles.

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon almond oil
Prep Time

2 minutes

Processing Time

45 minutes – Overnight

Process
  • In a bowl, mix the almond and olive oils until you get a smooth mixture.
  • Start massaging this mixture into your scalp and then work it down to the tips of your hair.
  • Once your scalp and hair are covered, massage your scalp for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Leave the oil on for an additional 30 minutes. Optionally, you can leave it in overnight.
  • Wash your hair with a mild sulfate-free shampoo.
  • Finish with a conditioner. Ensure that you apply the conditioner from the mid-lengths of your hair without touching your scalp.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

3. Olive Oil And Lemon For Dandruff

Woman applying olive oil and lemon for dandruff

Shutterstock

Lemon juice is rich in citric acid, vitamin C, and antioxidants (10). Anecdotal evidence suggests that it may help fight dandruff and boost scalp health. The acidic nature of lemon juice can also help balance your scalp’s pH and leave your scalp feeling fresh and free of build-up.

Be sure to properly rinse the lemon juice from your scalp. Failure to do so can lead to permanent hair loss.

Caution: Do not sit under the sun after applying this hair mask because lemon juice can bleach your hair when exposed to sunlight.

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
Prep Time

2 minutes

Processing Time

1 hour

Process
  • In a bowl, combine the olive oil and lemon juice.
  • Massage this mixture into your scalp and then work it down to the tips of your hair.
  • Once your hair and scalp are both covered, continue massaging for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Leave the lemon-oil mixture on for an additional 30-45 minutes.
  • Wash your hair with a mild sulfate-free shampoo.
  • Finish with conditioner. Ensure that you apply the conditioner from the mid-lengths of your hair without touching your scalp.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

4. Olive Oil And Tea Tree Oil For Dandruff

Olive and tea tree oils for dandruff control

Shutterstock

Tea tree oil has antifungal and antibacterial properties (11), (12). It has also been found to be effective in the treatment of dandruff and the scalp irritation and greasiness associated with it (11).

You Will Need
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 10 drops of tea tree oil
Prep Time

2 minutes

Processing Time

45 minutes

Process
  • In a bowl, add 10 drops of tea tree oil to 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Mix well.
  • Start massaging this mixture into your scalp and then work it down to the tips of your hair.
  • Once your scalp and hair are covered, massage your scalp for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Leave the oil on for an additional 30 minutes. Optionally, you can leave it in overnight.
  • Wash your hair with a mild sulfate-free shampoo.
  • Finish with a conditioner. Ensure that you apply the conditioner from the mid-lengths of your hair without touching your scalp.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

Stylecraze Trivia
When applying tea tree oil to your scalp, take care not to get it in your eyes as it can irritate them and cause redness.

5. Olive Oil And White Vinegar For Dandruff

White vinegar contains acetic acid that helps fight off fungal infections (13). Therefore, it may help fight off the dandruff-causing fungus Malassezia and relieve itching.

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
Prep Time

2 minutes

Processing Time

10 minutes

Process
  • In a bowl, mix all the ingredients until they are well-combined.
  • Start applying the mixture onto your scalp in sections.
  • Once your scalp is completely covered in the mixture, massage for about 5 minutes.
  • Leave the mixture on for an additional 5 minutes.
  • Wash your hair with a mild sulfate-free shampoo.
  • Finish with conditioner. Ensure that you apply the conditioner from the mid-lengths of your hair without touching your scalp.
How Often?

1-2 times a week until the problem subsides.

6. Olive Oil And Turmeric For Dandruff

Olive oil and turmeric for dandruff control

Shutterstock

Turmeric is a powerhouse of antioxidants (14). Hence, it may help fight and prevent scalp and hair damage. It also has strong antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe your scalp and fight infection (14).

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • Shower cap
Prep Time

2 minutes

Processing Time

45 minutes

Process
  • In a bowl, mix the turmeric and olive oil until they are well combined.
  • Start applying this mixture onto your scalp and then work it down to the tips of your hair.
  • After your hair and scalp are covered in the oil-turmeric mixture, massage your scalp for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Leave the mixture on for an additional 30 minutes.
  • Wash your hair with a mild sulfate-free shampoo.
  • Finish with conditioner. Ensure that you apply the conditioner from the mid-lengths of your hair without touching your scalp.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

Dandruff is caused by a combination of factors, including dry scalp, yeast overgrowth, poor hair care routines, and allergy to hair care products. It’s a common occurrence and may irritate the scalp. However, using olive oil is one of the simplest natural ways to get rid of dandruff. When combined with other natural components, it can help battle dandruff and clean your scalp. You can follow the tips discussed in the article to use olive oil to treat dandruff and improve the health of your scalp in no time.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to put olive oil on your scalp?

Yes, it is generally considered safe to massage olive oil on your scalp. It has hydrating and anti-oxidant properties that moisturize and soothe the scalp (1), (15).

Which is better for dandruff: coconut or olive oil?

While both coconut and olive oils are beneficial, olive oil may be better. Olive oil has a higher amount of vitamin E than coconut oil which is essential in improving hair health (16), (17), (18). Olive oil, in combination with other ingredients, can keep your scalp hydrated and may help fight dandruff (1).

Sources

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Check out our editorial policy for further details.
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author
Anjali specializes in hairstyles and hair and skin care and has written over 200 articles in these domains. Her philosophy... more

Precious Rutlin

(CAHP-BC)
Precious Rutlin is a licensed cosmetologist, board-certified trichologist, complementary alternative health practitioner, and holistic health educator that bridges the gap... more

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