imageNat­u­ral­ly, when one thinks of exfo­li­at­ing they think of scrub­bing down their entire body with an amaz­ing body scrub. How­ev­er, exfo­li­at­ing isn’t just for your body and a lot of times it’s for­got­ten that your scalp is skin too! With nat­u­rals using less sham­poo and more con­di­tion­er to cleanse their scalps dur­ing the win­ter months, buildup can be a big prob­lem.

If you exfo­li­ate your skin to remove dirt, oil and oth­er buildup from your pores, then the same needs to be done for your scalp. Not only will you remove buildup, but you will also help stim­u­late hair growth by giv­ing your scalp a good scrub­bing.

Why You Should Try It

1. Removes dead skin cells.
2. Can treat acne, white heads and oth­er blem­ish­es that can occur on the scalp
3. Can help pre­vent hair loss.
4. Unclogs pores by remov­ing build up.
5. Can relieve irri­tat­ed and itchy scalps caused by dif­fer­ent scalp con­di­tions.
6. Pro­motes hair growth by stim­u­lat­ing the scalp.

There are hair care prod­ucts that cater to scalp exfo­li­a­tion. Kiehls has a great Deep Micro Exfo­li­at­ing Scalp Treat­ment. Accord­ing to their web­site, the prod­uct was der­ma­tol­o­gist-test­ed to help loosen flaky buildup and stim­u­late healthy turnover on the sur­face of the scalp. Users of the prod­uct have said that the treat­ment leaves their scalp feel­ing fresh and clean. Quidad also has a Mediter­ranean Bay Leaf Exfo­li­at­ing Hair and Scalp Treat­ment. Free of parabens and sul­fates, Quidad’s scalp exfo­liant helps clear the scalp of buildup and improves the con­di­tion of the scalp by pro­vid­ing much need­ed nutri­ents.

If you’re inter­est­ed in going the home­made and nat­ur­al route, there are a pletho­ra of scalp exfo­li­at­ing recipes that you can try at home. The recipes below are just as effec­tive, but may be a lit­tle eas­i­er on your wal­let. Most of the ingre­di­ents are prob­a­bly already in your kitchen cab­i­nets.

Brown Sug­ar and Olive Oil Scrub

1. ¼ Cup of Olive Oil
2. ¼ Cup of Brown Sug­ar

Mix these ingre­di­ents in a bowl and mas­sage the mix­ture into your scalp. After a few min­utes, pro­ceed to rinse and wash your hair as usu­al. Because of the olive oil, this recipe is great for peo­ple with dry scalps.

Corn­meal and Pep­per­mint Scrub

1. ¼ Cup of Clar­i­fy­ing Sham­poo
2. ¼ Cup of Corn­meal
3. Pep­per­mint Oil
4. Tea Tree Oil

Sim­ply mix the sham­poo and corn­meal in a bowl and add a few drops of pep­per­mint and tea tree oil. Stir well and Rub the mix­ture into your scalp for a few min­utes. After rins­ing, pro­ceed to con­di­tion your hair as usu­al. This recipe is great because it includes pep­per­mint oil which helps to stim­u­late blood flow to your scalp. The tea tree oil in this recipe will help to reduce dan­druff.

There are plen­ty of recipes and exfo­li­at­ing hair prod­ucts for every scalp and hair type. It’s impor­tant to keep in mind that everyone’s scalp is unique and you should take the time and research the right exfo­liant for your scalp’s needs. An exfo­liant should nev­er irri­tate your scalp or be painful. If it is, dis­con­tin­ue using it and find some­thing a lit­tle gen­tler.

Nat­ur­al hair YouTu­ber, LeiLei08 has a help­ful tuto­r­i­al on one of the ways that you can exfo­li­ate your scalp. She used a home­made sea salt and almond oil recipe to do the job. Take a look at her tuto­r­i­al below.

Do you exfo­li­ate your scalp?

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19 Comments on "6 Benefits of Scalp Exfoliation for Natural Hair Growth + 2 Exfoliation Recipes"

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This reminds me of when my grand­moth­er would ‘scratch my head’ before she washed it. I like this form of exfo­li­a­tion better…lol

Hi ladies i used to work at a hair clin­ic that spe­cial­izes in scalp care…this is a basic deep scalp cleanse rou­tine we would per­form every 2–3 months for clients, espe­cial­ly those who wore wigs or head scarves to hide hair loss.. - rinse the scalp with water for 2–3 min­utes, gen­tly mas­sage the scalp for the last minute of the rinse. -apply sham­poo only and light­ly scrub your scalp with pads of fin­gers then rinse. apply sham­poo with your oil of choice and use a small brush (tooth­brush at home) and exfo­li­ate the mix­ture all over the scalp with your brush.… Read more »
KoriAndra RiosJesus

DO you need to wet your hair first??


[…] read­ing the arti­cle on Black­Girl­Long­Hair here. It includes […]


[…] hair­brush a good col­lege try. The cop­per bris­tles are sup­posed to reduce buildup over usage time (which is great because less dan­druff = more oppor­tu­ni­ty for your hair to grow longer and thick­er) and in turn makes hair look more radi­ant, healthy and shiny (the good […]

Hmm, this is very inter­est­ing. I do get a flaky scalp with­in days and I assumed it was prod­uct build up but I don’t think it is since I don’t use any­thing on my scalp. I’ve recent­ly switched to clay wash­es but I do put sham­poo on my scalp to get it clean since sham­poo dries out my hair. Since doing that I’ve noticed that my hair still flakes up but not as quick­ly. So I’m think­ing this could be an alter­na­tive to the sham­poo on my scalp. I’ve noticed my hair is start­ing to like more nat­ur­al prod­ucts when it didn’t… Read more »

Can’t wait to exfo­li­ate my scalp again. :)


What about Jane’s Carter Solu­tion Scalp Renew? Can we please sup­port each oth­er, dang


I use to love co Wash­ing when my hair was short­er. Now, I don’t because its hair so rinse out all of the con­di­tion­er and I eas­i­ly get prod­uct build up. I will def­i­nite­ly be try­ing exfo­li­at­ing

Christina Patrice

I’ve always been curi­ous about scalp exfo­li­at­ing, but I’m con­cerned about the rinse process. I don’t want lit­tle gran­ules of sug­ar in my hair — has any­one tried a scalp scrub? It sounds heav­en­ly though.

Claudette UK

That’s what I was won­der­ing about. Is wash­ing sug­ar out of your hair as tire­some as wash­ing out sand?


My thoughts exact­ly! Fear of per­pet­u­al sug­ar sprin­kles rain­ing out of my head for days has pre­vent­ed me from try­ing any of the scalp scrub recipes I’ve come across even though I fan­ta­size about the itchy scalp relief it would pro­vide for my seb­or­rhe­ic der­mati­tis… I haz con­cerns.


I did it just this morn­ing. After­wards my scalp felt much bet­ter (i.e not dry or flaky). The brown sug­ar com­plete­ly rinsed out. I just felt around in my hair before decid­ing to respond just in case I hadn’t noticed the gran­ules due to be in rush to get to work. I haven’t felt one spec. 

I love that I also got the ben­e­fit of oil rins­ing. My hair feels so soft right now.


Exfo­li­a­tion helps remove dead skin, oil, and oth­er buildup that can clog pores. Peo­ple exfo­li­ate oth­er parts of their bod­ies, like the face, to help with these con­di­tions as well. The blow flow that results from mas­sag­ing the scalp dur­ing exfo­li­a­tion may help with hair growth.


I would love to try it with the sug­ar, but the corn­meal seams like it would take years to get all of the lit­tle grains out of my hair with all this hair :-/

The One

2. Can treat acne, white heads and oth­er blem­ish­es that can occur on the scalp
3. Can help pre­vent hair loss.

How exact­ly does exfo­li­at­ing do #2 and #3?


Exfo­li­at­ing your scalp has the same ben­e­fits as exfo­li­at­ing your face. You’re cleans­ing your scalp of dead skin cells, dirt and prod­uct buildup which helps to reduce the chance of acne and oth­er blem­ish­es. Also when you exfo­li­ate, it’s stim­u­lat­ing your blood which in turn feeds your fol­li­cles, so that your hair can grow and help with bald­ing spots.

If you think about how your scalp is pret­ty much the same skin as that of your face, and how when you exfo­li­ate your face prop­er­ly, it tends to reduce blem­ish­es caused by clogged pores (white­heads, black heads, pim­ples); as clogged pores come from dead skin cells, too much oil on the sur­face of skin, debris, dirt, make­up, and pret­ty much any­thing that con­sti­tutes as buildup. On the scalp, clogged pores/buildup is more like­ly to come from prod­uct residue, sweat, and shed skin. Clogged pores can mean clogged foli­cles. Clogged foli­cles can suf­fo­cate grow­ing hair and lead to a (some­times… Read more »

You do pose some good ques­tions. Maybe for #2, it more pre­vents them from hap­pen­ing (since your pores are unclogged and clean) vs treat them.