5 Homemade Anti-Dandruff Shampoos: Get Clean & Clear Scalp - hair buddha
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5 Homemade Anti-Dandruff Shampoos: Get Clean & Clear Scalp

Homemade shampoo for Dandruff


I got rid of Dandruff after switching to homemade shampoo.

Just the first use made a noticeable difference.

And I couldn’t believe I had put up with dandruff for so many years and the cure was right at my home.

I thought the yeast – which is what the dandruff literature puts down to – was the cause of my dandruff. So I was trying just about every anti-dandruff shampoo on the planet.

To remove the yeast, I even took probiotics supplements and ate yogurt, sauerkraut, kefir and what not till my system gave up and revolted by making me sick.

But dandruff stayed, until I switched to homemade shampoo.

But the reason I moved to homemade shampoo was not dandruff, but hair loss (I was losing massive amounts of hair then). My instincts told me to switch to homemade shampoo.

And that really saved my hair as well as got rid of dandruff. Not just that, my hair became more bounce, more shine and after a few months, many new hair started to grow on my scalp.

Switching to homemade shampoo is the best thing that I did for my hair. It fixed so many problems. And I also realised later on that it was not the yeast that was causing dandruff but I was having an allergic reaction to the store-bought shampoo.

Problems with store-bought shampoo

  • Most of them contain sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) – which is a detergent used to remove the grease and dirt. But SLS is a known skin irritant and can cause itchy scalp, dry skin, eczema and even pollute the environment by getting into the ground water.
  • The preservatives they contain may not agree with your skin and cause an allergic reaction.
  • Due to the presence of harsh detergents, it strips the natural protective oils from the scalp, leaving it dry and exposed to the elements.
  • Even the so called natural shampoos may not help. This is because the natural detergents in them tend to have a higher pH, whereas our scalp has a lower pH (between 4.5 and 5.5). And this pH imbalance affects the skin function, making it prone to dry skin, rashes and inflammation.
  • This whole thing has an effect on hair follicles, causing dull and brittle hair. When the scalp—which is the foundation of hair—is unhealthy, it will not grow healthy hair.

Bottom line: if you have been suffering from dandruff and nothing seem to help, give your store bought shampoo a break and try these natural alternatives. Just by switching to homemade shampoo you can expect a big difference in your dandruff.

I have 5 options for you. You can try them all and see what works for you:

  1. Cucumber and Lime Scalp Detox
  2. Honey Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
  3. Shikakai pH Balanced Shampoo
  4. Rhassoul Clay Deep Cleanser
  5. Yucca Root Cleanser for Dry and Itchy Scalp

Here are Homemade Shampoos for Dandruff that will remove the flakes and make your hair shiny and beautiful….

5 Homemade Anti-Dandruff Shampoos: Get Clean & Clear Scalp

1. Cucumber and Lime Scalp Detox


This is a very soothing cleanser for your itchy, flaky scalp.

Cucumber contains anti-inflammatory and anti-itching properties, which help reduce redness and skin irritation.

Cucumber naturally hydrates and moisturises the scalp – this will get rid of the dryness and flaking. And for your hair, cucumber offers lots of antioxidants, minerals, biotin, vitamin C and other micro-nutrients which nourish hair follicles and improve growth.

The role of lime is also very important. Because of its acidic nature, lime helps to remove oil, dirt and dead skin cells from your scalp. Lime is rich in vitamin C, and offers detoxifying and antiseptic benefits. It will not only make your scalp healthy but also adds shine and silkiness to your hair.

You will need:

  • 1 cup cucumber (peeled & chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 3 drops rosemary essential oil (optional)

Blend the cucumber to a fine paste. Mix in lime juice and your detox scalp is ready to use.

How to use:

Apply this mixture to your scalp. You can use your fingers or a cotton piece and apply section by section. Massage gently for a couple of minutes, and let it soak in for 5-15 minutes. Then wash it out.

Your hair will be cleansed, nourished, and moisturized.

Extra notes:

If you have long or curly hair, use cucumber juice instead of pulp. After you blend the cucumber to a fine paste, squeeze out the cucumber juice using a fine sieve or muslin cloth (handkerchief also works fine). Then discard the pulp and use just the juice. This will prevent the cucumber bits hanging on to your hair.

2. Honey Anti-Dandruff ShampooHoney anti-dandruff shampoo

Honey is a mild cleanser and works very well as an anti-dandruff shampoo. All thanks to its incredible healing properties.

There are a number of studies to prove that honey is useful in relieving dandruff,  seborrheic dermatitis as well as psoriasis. (1,2)

Besides, the slightly acidic nature of honey balances the scalp pH – this helps to maintain a healthy scalp and keeps nasty bacteria and fungus in check.

Honey is also a great moisturiser. Due to its humectants nature, honey hydrates and conditions the scalp and makes hair soft, shiny and frizz-free.

You will need:

Combine honey and water in a bowl and mix well.

You can use an old shampoo bottle or a  squeeze bottle to pour this shampoo.

How to use

Wet hair. Then massage the honey shampoo for about a minute, and rinse thoroughly. Let your hair dry naturally.

Another way you can use honey shampoo is Not as a shampoo, but as a last rinse. Doing this will also help with dandruff.

Extra notes:

  • Always buy unprocessed raw honey as it retains maximum antioxidants, enzyme, vitamins, minerals and healing properties. Such honey will bring great results.
  • Some people like to follow up with apple cider vinegar (acv) or lime juice rinse. Mix 1 tablespoon acv with 1 cup of water, pour over your hair and rinse thoroughly. This adds shine and removes any hard water build up.

3. Shikakai pH Balanced Shampoo


This is my go to shampoo when I have itchy, flaky scalp. But you can also use this as an everyday shampoo. It cleans the scalp beautifully, without stripping it of its natural protective oils. This natural shampoo is also a treat for your hair. Because of its moisturising and conditioning effects, it will leave your hair feeling soft, shiny and bouncy.

The good thing is that it works for all hair types.

I use whole herbs – shikakai, reetha (soap nut), and fenugreek seeds – to make this anti-dandruff shampoo. Here’s what each ingredient has to offer.

Shikakai is pH balancing and works to keep the scalp healthy and dandruff free. It also gently cleans the hair and increases silkiness and bounciness of hair.

Fenugreek seeds has wonderful soothing properties that calm the dry irritated scalp. Plus it makes hair soft and shiny.

Reetha (soap nut) not only cleans the hair but also strengthens the hair roots, as well as adds body and thickness to your hair. While it’s anti-microbial properties help with scalp conditions such as dandruff and eczema.

You will need:


Combine the herbs with water in a stainless-steel pan. Bring to a boil, and continue boiling for 10-12 minutes.

Add more water if needed. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and leave it to ‘steep’ until it cools. Strain out the herbs. Done. (You can pour the liquid into a squeeze bottle for easy use.)

To use:

Wet your hair. Pour the shampoo slowly over hair and massage the scalp and work through your hair.

Let it sit for 4-5 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with clean water and let your hair dry naturally. Your scalp will be clean and clear, and hair will be soft and bouncy.

Extra Notes:

  1. You can make large quantities of this shampoo and freeze them in ice cube tray. More instructions here.
  2. Shikakai may darken your hair over time.

4. Rhassoul Clay Deep CleanserRhassoul Clay Deep Cleanse Shampoo


This brown coloured clay, with its smooth silky texture, is a superb natural cleanser. Rhassoul clay is known for its ability to draw out impurities that can build up on scalp and hair. Rich in natural minerals, rhassoul clay moisturises hair, improves elasticity, and makes hair super soft. It’s also very soothing on the scalp and helps calm skin irritation.

You will need:

To make this mud cleanser, simply add water to the clay to make a runny paste. That’s it and you’re ready to use.

Tip: If your hair is dry, stir in a few drops of oil (such as almond oil) to make the mixture more moisturising.

How to use:

Massage the rhassoul mixture into the scalp and hair, and leave it on for 3 to 5 minutes, then rinse thoroughly.

Enjoy your dandruff-free scalp and beautiful hair.

Extra notes:

  1. You can make this shampoo more exotic by replacing water with floral water (rose, chamomile) or blend in herbal teas such as rosemary, mint, shikakai or chamomile.
  2. If your hair doesn’t feel clean enough, follow up with apple cider vinegar (acv) or lime juice rinse. Mix 1 tablespoon acv with 1 cup of water, pour over your hair and rinse well. This adds shine and removes any hard water build up.

5. Yucca Root Cleanser for Dry, Itchy Scalpyucca root shampoo for dry itchy scalp


Yucca Schidigera, also known as Spanish dagger is native to the south eastern region of America (Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico and California). Its roots contain natural saponins and were used to make soaps by native Americans. They also washed their hair with yucca to fight dandruff and hair loss.

Yucca root soothes and nourishes the scalp. And its emollient properties moisturises hair and adds luster and softness to it.

The other two ingredients in this homemade shampoo are amla and fenugreek. Amla is rich in vitamin C and powerful antioxidants that help maintain a healthy scalp. Amla also provides nourishment for thicker and faster hair growth.

Fenugreek is a great natural conditioner. It makes hair smooth, shiny and easy to comb.

You will need:

This shampoo is quick and easy to make. Place all the powders in a bowl. Slowly pour in hot water to make a runny paste, and let it cool (it will only take a couple of minutes). You can add essential oil at this stage and give it a good mix.

To use:

Massage the mixture through the hair just like shampoo. Let it sit on your hair for 5 minutes, then rinse thoroughly.

Extra Notes:

  1. shikakai powder may work as substitute for yucca root.
  2. Amla can darken fair hair over time. Try replacing it with herbs such as chamomile flowers, lavender or orange peel powder.

More Tips for Getting Rid of Dandruff

1. Eat Yogurt. Live or homemade yogurt contains tons of healthy bacteria – which helps to keep dandruff causing yeast/fungus in check.

2. Take a daily dose of Healthy Fats: Healthy fats are anti-inflammatory and they will slow down the production of flaky skin as well as soothe irritated skin. Good fats are ghee, butter, avocados, nuts (cashew, almonds, walnut), and seeds (pumpkin, sesame, sunflower).

3. Stay happy: Stress is the root of most illness, and it can even make your dandruff worse. Some proven ways to stay happy all the time are: exercise, write a gratitude journal, own less stuff, practice mindfulness (live in the present moment), help others, and go out and do something that scares you (try a new recipe, talk to a stranger, ask for a raise).

4. Apply miracle hair mask 

This homemade hair mask contains just 2 common kitchen ingredients but is extremely effective in getting rid of dandruff. Give it a try.


I would love to hear how the dandruff shampoo/s worked for you…. Share in the comment box below… 

Leave a Comment:

Lesly says

Hi Minaz. I just want to say thank you for sharing all of your remedies for hair care. They are truly a Godsend. I have been suffering with dry itchy flaky scalp for quite some time now. About a week and half ago, I used the cucumber and lime detox on my hair before shampooing it with the honey shampoo followed by a hot oil treatment and rinse out. For the first time in a long time, there aren’t any flakes, but there is still itching. I would like to incorporate your Miracle Mask this time around. Can I do the cucumber and lime detox under the Miracle Mask and then shampoo them both out with the honey shampoo? Or what would you recommend?

    Minaz says

    Hi Lesly. you can do cucumber and lime detox under miracle hair mask. Use a egg yolk to shampoo, followed by honey as a last rinse.

Heidi says

Thank you for all the wonderful natural hair inspiration here. I have had a similar experience to you in that store bought shampoos cause itchiness, dandruff and build-up on my scalp, even the health store ones. It gets frustrating when the bathroom cupboard is filling up with almost full bottles of shampoo while the hairdresser looks judgingly at my messy scalp. Before your web page I found the solution of using plain rhassoul clay which leaves my hair clean, voluminous and itch free, however it does cause build-up over time so I started to alternate with regular shampoo which is not ideal. So your recipes are godsends for new ideas how to treat my scalp and hair well. Since finding your site I have tried a few of your recipes succesfully and I love egg shampoo. I have tried chickpea and orange peel shampoo which was also great and seemed to reduce the many flakes I have lately but is it right understood that these protein based shampoos should only be used once per week? What I would like to ask you is: Any suggestions for a hair regimen for someone with fine blonde hair that tends to have dandruff and scalp build-up? I wash my hair about every 3 days. Hit me with more inspiration! Thank you

Sharmila says

It makes me incredibly happy to have found your wonderful blog. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with everyone!

Alka says

The cucumber and lime works. My dandruff is no more. I am sooooo grateful.

    Minaz says


Tori says

Hi, I’ve be been reading your posts for help making shampoo. I have her opposites problem; my hair is almost always oily. I recently tried making a mixture of Aritha, shakakai and alma, but my hair isn’t still clumped at the ends. I’m going to get the dyed parts cut off this is week, but I want to find a long term solution.

    Minaz says

    You can alternate between clay detox and egg and olive oil mask. This should hopefully sort your problem out.

Phelisa Mzaza says

my scalp has very disgusting itching pink and wet runnie pimples wat can i do

    Minaz says

    Have you seen a doctor?

Misha says

Hello. I’m a 17 year old. I just wanted to know if the Biotique shampoo and conditioner are good for your hair or not?? I’m hair has been falling for nearly six months, though they do stop frequently but then start falling again.

    Minaz says

    Hello Misha, not every product works for every one. If your hair is falling out a lot, stop using conditioners which can clog your follicles. You can use this or
    this shampoo to wash your hair.

Stefan says

First of Minaz, I just wat to say that I used your recipe for the yoghurt mask today, and my scalp has seen a massive improvement!
I want to now try a natural shampoo now, but unfortunately i don’t have the time to create the shampoos you’ve suggested (Which I’m sure are great!)
I’ve been searching for SLS free shampoos, but I’m mindful of the fact that even natural shampoos may not help because of the natural detergents in them tend to have a higher pH. Therefore could you kindly recommend some shampoo’s which you have used in the past or which you know to be good?

Sharifa says

Just saw your tip regarding rhassoul clay. Can Fuller’s Earth also be used like that? It is more easily available to me.

    Minaz says

    Yes you can try fullers earth.
    You can also use a mix of shikakai powder and fenugreek powder, make a paste and use that as a shampoo. Let me know how it works for your.

Bay says

Do you ship ingredients that we cannot find here in Europe,like Amla fruit,Shikakai,etc etc etc or do you have a link where we can do the purchase.Thank you.

    Minaz says

    Hi Bay, you should be able to find them on amazon or ebay.

Megala says

Hi Minaz, I have a question. Is lemon juice a good alternative to wash your hair? I’ve stopped shampooing my hair with commercial products a few months ago. Been using yogurt hair mask weekly and only water with a little ACV to get rid of dandruff on normal days. The itchiness reduced tremendously, but I do see dandruff making my scalp as its permanent home. We do not have reetha berry here in Malaysia.

    Minaz says

    Hi Megala, use egg yolk to wash your hair.

Tynnetta M says

I have all these herbs in powder form. Can you give measurements for a powder version? I have thick coarse, curly/coily hair. I’ve tried your other homemade shampoo and I loved it even for my dry hair!!

    Minaz says

    Hi Tynnetta, try this:
    1 tbsp Shikakai powder
    1 tbsp Marshmallow root powder
    1 teaspoon reetha berry powder

Julie peace says

Lovely to have you back you have been well missed such beautiful things you do so inspirational and thank you for more advice and recepies best regards Julie

    Minaz says

    Thanks for your kind words Julie.

Neeta says

I like this shampoo recipes 🙂 I will try soon. In the past I have applied lemon juice before shampooing for dandruff but it drys my hair.

    Minaz says

    Great! Let me know how it works for you.

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