Last month I finally broke down and went to my doctor about my excessively itchy scalp. Since December of 2016, I had been rotating through all sorts of different shampoos and other treatments, desperately trying to make my scalp less itchy. The keyword here: trying. Finally, I gave in and went to my doctor after my dad offhandedly mentioned that he uses a prescription cream for his scalp issues. Now, I know he had dandruff but I had no idea he actually had a prescription treatment. Knowing that most of my more annoying traits were inherited from him (extreme nearsightedness, chronic migraine, and extremely thick and curly hair), I figured I probably also inherited the lovely scalp condition from him (thanks, Dad…).
So off to the doctor I went and after a two minute examination to my head (those latex gloves he had on pulled so badly!), my doctor declared that I needed a medicated shampoo and that was that. Now, since I had been expecting to be sent of to the dermatologist based on the research I had done while looking for non-prescription options, I was left pleased but surprised filling my new prescription. Happily, the prescription shampoo takes care of most of the issues when I use it 2-3 times a week. I find that I need to increase my use every 3 or 4 weeks as the itch increases and then go back to the normal 2 times a week.
At this point, everything was looking up until I realized that the prescription was FRYING my hair! Having never been one to use heat on my hair much, this was a little disconcerting but the case nevertheless. After going to get my hair trimmed because I simply could not stand how dry it was anymore, my hairstylist and I worked out a new plan: Only shampoo with the medicated shampoo and use conditioner every day. While I had been avoiding putting anything on my hair on the medicated shampoo days, we agreed I should try conditioning just the ends on those days to help prevent the damage. I also found myself buying a bristle boar brush and brushing my hair for the first time in ages. As a curly haired girl, this advice went against everything I had learned, but as long as I wash my hair it seems to be ok and does seem to be helping with my scalp a bit (bonus!).
It’s now been three weeks and I’m already starting to notice the ends are drying out AND I’m out of my old conditioner, so off to Ulta I went. I’ve recently become an Ulta convert, as it’s close to my house, has everything I want in a single store, and their rewards program is great since I get points on my salon appointments AND my makeup purchases AND my skincare purchases. Anyways, wading through products one of the hair stylists (not the one I’ve been seeing – sadly she was with a customer) came over to help me out as I tried to decide between Ouidad and DevaCurl. To my surprise, she pointed me to Redken. Now, I know that Ulta salons are Redken salons but she even admitted that she uses Ouidad on her EXTREMELY curly hair. The problem, I was told, is those products aren’t designed to counter the impact of chemicals because they have very few or none, depending on your formulation. This makes sense to me so I decided to take her word for it and try it.
Therefore, starting this weekend, I have THREE new hair products to add to my routine that will hopefully help! The Redken Extreme Conditioner and Anti-Snap for every day use and the Redken Extreme MegaMask for use 1-2 times a week. I don’t know if it will help but I’m willing to try because I’m tired of feeling my hair be terribly dry but the medicated shampoo is NOT going anywhere!
Just to be clear, this is not a paid post – just me writing about my journey to try to have an itch-free head and hair that isn’t completely fried in the process.
My plan is to keep track of how things go and update here. We’ll see if I manage that since I’ve had this site over a year and only posted a handful of times. To that end, I’m going to document my new routine below and document changes as I sort through various products. Wish me luck!
Shampoo – Ketoconazole 2% shampoo 2-3x/week, Aveda Rosemary Mint Shampoo (until I run out – I don’t really like the shampoo) 1x/week maximum
Conditioner – Redken Extreme Conditioner 5-6 days a week, Redken Exterme MegaMask 1-2 days a week
Leave-in conditioner: Pureology Colour Fanatic Multi-Tasking Hair Beautifier
Other daily products: Redken Extreme Anti-Snap, Moraccanoil Treatment Original, Moraccanoil Intense Curl Cream (non-work days)