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How to Treat an Oily Scalp

Providing care to an oily scalp can be difficult. We run through recommended techniques, products and advice on how to treat the issue of an oily scalp.

Good hair days have the power to make us feel like our best selves. When it comes to our hair though, things don’t always go to plan. Waking up to an oily scalp is super frustrating and can affect your overall confidence. There are several factors that contribute to an oily scalp (spoiler: it’s not just genetics), but the good news is that an oily scalp can be managed with the right products and routine.


To understand why oily scalps occur and the habits and products you should avoid, as well as the right routine to keep oiliness at bay, look no further than our helpful guide below.


What causes an oily scalp?

It’s a common misconception that oily scalps can only be the result of genetics or long waits between washes. While those sources can definitely contribute to oiliness, our scalp’s moisture level is also affected by our lifestyle, environments and even changes to stress levels.


Scalps, like the rest of the skin on our body, produce a natural oil called sebum. Sebum is the way our body keeps skin moisturised and hydrated, but we can sometimes produce an excess amount of it, leading to oiliness. An excess amount of oiliness can be caused by changes in hormones or medication, stress, over-washing hair, and even hair styling routines. Funnily enough, sebum can also overproduce when we’re dehydrated, making dry climates another factor.


Products that contribute to an oily scalp


The way that you wash your hair can also lead to dreaded greasiness. Frequent washing can strip your scalp of its healthy oil levels and put its sebum production into overdrive. Alongside this, too much shampoo and not enough rinsing can clog your hair with any oil that your product may contain.

How to manage your oily hair & scalp


Knowing how to treat an oily scalp is simpler than you might think. If you feel defeated by onsets of oiliness, we have you covered. Read on below for our easy-to-follow oily hair and scalp treatment.

Focus on your scalp when washing

Like the other areas of skin, our scalps are prone to becoming itchy, dry, sweaty and sensitive. When washing your hair make sure to massage your scalp firmly but gently. This will encourage dead skin cell exfoliation (goodbye dandruff) and promote the healthy circulation of blood. Doing this will also allow your product to be as effective as possible. After a few minutes, rinse all of your product out so that there is no residue left behind.
clean scalp
styling tool

Clean your hairstyling tools

Oil and hair products can build up on straighteners, curling irons, brushes and rollers. You should remove the hair from your brushes and combs once a week, and soak them in a gentle cleanser to rid them of oil. To clean your heated tools, wipe them down regularly with alcohol rubs.

Avoid touching your hair

We hear you – playing with hair is a subconscious habit that’s hard to break. It’s important that you try though, as twirling, scratching and running your hands through hair will transfer the oil from your fingers and palms onto those precious locks. Keeping your hands off is one of the best things you can do for your hair health, so do whatever you can to remember.
soft hair
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Hair care routine for oily hair & scalp



The right haircare routine can strengthen locks, repair damaged ends, and yes, keep your crown bouncy and shiny, with no oiliness in sight. Follow the above tips, use nourishing and soothing products, and brush your hair regularly to help the healthy spread of sebum from roots to ends.

Change your pillowcase regularly

Oil as well as bacteria and pollutants brought in from outside build up on your pillowcase. Make sure to wash your pillowcase around once a week. This is especially important for those with acne-prone skin, as oily materials can also aggravate the state of skin.
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Spécifique Bain Divalent Shampoo



If oiliness is a recurring problem for you, look for shampoo that’s made specifically for greasy hair and oily scalps. Our Specifique Bain Divalent Shampoo treats oily roots and actually helps to regulate the overproduction of sebum, preventing future bad hair days. Your scalp is gently cleansed of excess oil and impurities, leaving you with soft, happy locks. Apply to wet hair and massage in to encourage healthy blood circulation.

Spécifique Masque Hydra-Apaisant Scalp & Hair Treatment Mask


Proper hydration is key to a healthy scalp. If your scalp is properly moisturised, the sebum production won’t go into overdrive. Try deeply nourishing masks like our Specifique Masque Hydra-Apaisant Scalp & Hair Treatment Mask. A combination of antioxidants and hydrating properties will soothe and cool your scalp, leaving hair supple and protected. .


kerastase Specifique Masque