Wednesday, February 1, 2023

How To Get Rid Of Scalp Acne

Treatment For Scalp Acne

How to Get Rid of Scalp & Back of Neck Acne Naturally! | 3 Most Effective Home Remedies

A person may need a topical, medicated treatment for their scalp acne.

Medicated topical products for scalp acne can be bought without a prescription. Common ingredients in these products may include:

  • Salicylic acid: This is a ingredient used in skin care products to fight acne. Salicylic acid helps to clear dead skin cells by breaking down the bonds between them.
  • Glycolic acid: This acid can help exfoliate the scalp and remove dead skin cells, bacteria, and sebum.
  • Ketoconazole: An antifungal agent, ketoconazole is used to treat red or scaly skin.
  • Ciclopirox: Ciclopirox is an antifungal agent used to treat skin infections and is often added to dandruff shampoos
  • Benzoyl peroxide: An antibacterial ingredient, benzoyl peroxide helps to eliminate the bacteria Propionibacterium acnes, which can be present in scalp acne.

For persistent scalp acne and symptoms such as hair loss and inflammation, a person can consider discussing the following treatments with a doctor:

A person with scalp acne should only use one type of scalp treatment at a time unless otherwise directed by a doctor. In doing this, it will be easier for a person to track the effectiveness of individual products against their scalp acne.

What Causes Scalp Acne

Scalp acne can vary in its appearance. Sometimes, scalp acne can resemble small pimples or zits on the scalp. These spots can develop on the back of the head and may feel itchy and sore.

In other cases, a person may develop pimples along their hairline or have painful bumps or cysts under the skin.

Pimples on the scalp occur when a pore or hair follicle gets clogged with dead skin cells or sebum.

Bacteria, yeast, or mites can also get into the pores and cause a reaction.

Factors that can cause scalp acne include:

  • dead skin cells or oil clogging the follicles
  • a buildup of products, such as hair gels, leave-in treatments, or hairspray
  • not washing the hair thoroughly enough
  • waiting too long after a workout to wash the hair
  • sweating while wearing a head covering, especially if it causes friction

Specific germs that may cause pimples on the scalp include:

  • Yeasts from the Malassezia family
  • Cutibacterium

The AAD states that people with scalp acne may notice that they have:

  • tiny bumps along the hairline, on the forehead, or at the back of the neck
  • whiteheads on the scalp or hairline
  • closely packed bumps
  • bumps on the scalp that are painful

Some people may also develop bumps that they can feel but are unable to see.

Scalp hygiene plays an essential role in avoiding clogged pores. A person can try washing their hair whenever it starts to feel oily and after every workout.

To treat scalp acne and prevent further flare-ups, a person can consider:

, can be:

Should You Be Exfoliating Your Scalp

A targeted scalp exfoliating treatment isnt necessary, but if you know your scalp and hairline are breakout-prone, its not a bad idea, nor is choosing an acne shampoo with a chemical exfoliant. All three of our experts recommend shampoos and treatments with salicylic acid or glycolic acid, which will help to sweep away dead skin cells and keep pores clean and clear of build-up. And for those times that youve gone a few too many days without cleansing, try a deep-cleansing shampoolook for label terms like clarifying or detoxifying . A few derm-approved picks to try: Neutrogena T/Sal Therapeutic Shampoo , The Inkey List Glycolic Acid Exfoliating Scalp Scrub , and Vanicream Shampoo .

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Are There Any Long

If you pick at pimples, scars can form which will prevent the growth of hairs in the scarred areas. Generally, the healthier your scalp, the healthier your hair will be. Therefore, pimples are not ideal, says Anabel. If your scalp is very inflamed and irritated, avoid scented styling products close to your roots. Also, be careful when brushing, warns Anabel. You do not want to run brush over your scalp as this can scratch and further irritate pimples. And just like breakouts on your face, its best not pick at your scalpne. This can spread infection, and create scars.

Here Are 6 Hacks To Get Rid Of Scalp Pimples

17 Home Remedies For Scalp Pimples &  Acne Treatment
  • Keep your scalp clean and wash your hair thoroughly. Avoid going to bed with any product in your hair. If you use gels, sprays, etc., do a quick rinse once you get home. Regularly wash your combs, hairbrushes, hats, and pillow covers.
  • Treatment of scalp pimples also includes the use of topical retinoids and benzoyl peroxide. It may include topical steroid creams and antihistamines.
  • Steer clear of oily products that can clog the pores of the scalp, and consider a dandruff shampoo with antifungal medicine. Dandruff is one of the major reasons for hair damage and fall. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
  • Using these shampoos can help you get rid of mild scalp pimples, but always consult a dermatologist if it becomes severe, persistent and starts causing hair loss and inflammation. The possible medications for scalp acne may include topical antibiotics, steroid creams or injections, oral antibiotics, antihistamines , phototherapy, clearing pores through physical extractions or isotretinoin .
  • Avoid oiling the hair and using too many styling products, if you are already prone to this condition or have an oily scalp. Do not use heat styling tools very frequently.
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    How To Treat Scalp Pimples

    This article was medically reviewed by Luba Lee, FNP-BC, MS. Luba Lee, FNP-BC is a board certified Family Nurse Practitioner and educator in Tennessee with over a decade of clinical experience. Luba has certifications in Pediatric Advanced Life Support , Emergency Medicine, Advanced Cardiac Life Support , Team Building, and Critical Care Nursing. She received her Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Tennessee in 2006.There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 85% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 896,761 times.

    Scalp pimples are just as painful and itchy as a pimple on your face or back, but more difficult to treat because they are covered by your hair. The only advantage to scalp pimples is that they are largely hidden by your hair, but the natural oils from your hair or headwear can worsen your scalp pimples or cause new ones to form. Learning how to treat scalp acne and take preventative measures can help ensure that this pimple location is not a recurring problem.

    Are There Any At

    Pimples on the scalp can easily be treated as well as prevented at home with a little precaution, lifestyle changes and home remedies. It is really important to keep the scalp clean by washing it regularly. Wash your hair using shampoos with antifungal and salicylic acid-based components. Avoid oiling your hair and using too many styling products if you are already prone to this condition or have an oily scalp. Do not use heat styling tools very frequently. warns Dr. Sarkar.Apart from the above, following these simple home remedies for scalp acne will make a huge difference

    Also Check: What Can Cure Acne Scars

    How To Treat Scalp Acne

    Hair follicles are similar to other pores on the skin. They contain sebaceous glands that produce oil in order to keep your hair soft, shiny and healthy. But too much oil is the enemy of blemish-free skin, be it on your face or scalp, so it follows that treating scalp blemishes is not unlike treating skin problems on your face and the rest of your body.

    Your first step is to minimize oil production and irritation.

    Wash Your Hair Frequently

    How to Get Rid of Scalp Acne | Acne Treatment

    Sometimes there could be build up of acne on the scalp because of irregular washing as it leads to excess oil on the scalp leading to scalp acne. Cleansing your hair every other day can help you in managing acne easily. The scalp is one of the oiliest places on the body and hence it is extremely essential to cleanse it frequently to avoid acne.

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    What Is Acne On The Scalp

    According to Michele Green, MD, a board-certified cosmetic dermatologist in Manhattan, New York, scalp acne is caused by blocked sebaceous pores, or follicles, when there is a build-up of dead skin cells, debris, and oil. According to Dr. Green, other variables such as product build-up, sensitivity to hair treatments, headwear, prevalent fungal infections of the hair, and excessive sebum on the scalp may all contribute to scalp and hairline acne.

    Scalp acne may resemble ordinary pimples along the hairline or on the scalp in appearance and sensation. It might occur as a single pimple patch or many patches. According to Melanie Palm, MD, a board-certified dermatologist at Art of Skin, it may even damage your whole scalp. If your acne extends to your forehead, neck, or ears, its still considered scalp acne.

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    Scalp folliculitis is the most frequent and mild form of scalp acne, according to Dr. Palm. She says it happens near hair follicles, usually on the back and sides of the head. Dr. Palm adds that in rare circumstances, severe and untreated fungal infections on the scalp may result in a crusted, acne-like huge mass known as a kerion. Although this is an uncommon occurrence, any breakouts that spread quickly, produce pus, or are very painful should be treated by a specialist.

    A Apple Cider Vinegar

    This ingredient can be effective in reducing acne symptoms due to its pH balancing and antimicrobial properties .

    How To Apply:

    • Dilute apple cider vinegar in water .
    • After shampooing and conditioning your hair, gently pour and massage the mixture onto your scalp evenly.
    • Leave it on for two minutes and rinse thoroughly.

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    How Do You Treat Scalp Acne

    Although there are many different methods of treatment for scalp acne, we will recommend the top natural and over-the-counter treatments for your condition.

    Exfoliate regularly with an exfoliant specifically marketed for use on the head which contains alpha hydroxy acid or lactic acid , sugar scrubs, or even dry brushes. You can also limit oil production by avoiding food that contributes to oily skin, such as salt, sugar, red meat, fried food, and refined carbs.

    Washing your scalp with a solution of apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar with water can also help to reduce sebum production on the scalp. Apple cider vinegar has antibacterial properties that will kill any bacteria lingering on the surface, while regular shampooing alone won’t do anything for this type of infection if it’s there. Plus, you’ll be getting some great vitamin C benefits from ACV too. Use an ACV rinse once or twice a week.

    You can use heat to open up pores on your scalp before you get in the shower each time, then apply either tea tree oil or salicylic acid mixed into shampoo for extra cleansing power.

    Whatcanyou Do To Treat Scalp Acne

    Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Scalp Acne

    Make your wash-day routine count by lathering up with medicated shampoos formulated with antibacterial ingredients, such as sulfur and salicylic acid. “I suggest washing every other day,” says Robinson. “It’s best to lather and let the anti-inflammatory shampoo sit for five minutes before rinsing for best effect.” She recommends Cln shampoo, which combines salicylic acid and dilute sodium hypochlorite to knock out itching, folliculitis, and dandruff.

    If you head to your dermatologist, they may prescribe topical options such as topical clindamycin, erythromycin, benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or glycolic acid. “For more severe cases, oral antibiotics or oral retinoids are prescribed,” says Hicks-Graham.

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    The Ultimate Guide To Scalp Acne: How To Prevent Wipe Out And Treat

    If you have scalp acne, then you know how frustrating the condition can be. You want to get rid of pimples because they are unsightly and sometimes painful, but often don’t know where to start. The good news is there are a lot of treatments out there for scalp acne. Well go over everything you need to know about scalp acne from what it is and how it develops, prevention methods, treatment options, to products for getting rid of pesky pimples once and for all.

    Causes Of Pimples On The Scalp

    Finding out about the various causes of pimples on the scalp gives you a better understanding of this condition and makes treating it a lot simpler. The main reason behind the occurrence of scalp acne is the clogging of follicles, which can be caused by dirt, bacteria or oil. Lets look at these causes in detail –

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    How To Apply Anti

    While the application procedure is simple, it is important to take a certain precautions to avoid side effects:


    • Apply shampoo directly on the scalp and hair by massaging gently.
    • Leave lather on the scalp for a minute.
    • Rinse off thoroughly with lukewarm water.
    • Repeat twice or thrice a week or as directed by the physician.


    • Avoid contact with the eyes. If contact occurs, rinse eyes thoroughly with water.
    • Rinse off thoroughly to prevent the product from clogging your pores.
    • Do not scrub your scalp.
    • Stop use and contact a physician if the condition worsens.
    • Read the back label of the product before use .

    Symptoms Of Scalp Acne

    SCALP ACNE & ITCHY DANDRUFF | How To Get Rid of It Completely!

    Scalp acne can appear throughout your hair or along your hairline. Common symptoms include:

    • Tiny bumps along your forehead or the back of your neck
    • Tiny bumps you can feel but canât see
    • Tiny bumps packed together that you can see
    • Whiteheads on your scalp or hairline
    • Flesh-colored bumps on your scalp or hairline
    • Painful bumps on your scalp
    • Deep cysts under your skin with no headâ

    Acne doesnât usually cause an itchy scalp and this symptom could be a sign of other skin problems like psoriasis

    Sometimes acne affects your emotions and self-esteem. Itâs common for people to feel embarrassed and even depressed because of acne.

    Read Also: How To Treat Jawline Acne

    Scalp Acne Is A Common Condition That Isn’t Talked About Here’s What You Should Know

    As POPSUGAR editors, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you’ll like too. If you buy a product we have recommended, we may receive affiliate commission, which in turn supports our work.

    Acne exists in many forms, and while breakouts on or near your face are typically the focus when it comes to discussing treatment options, acne can show up on virtually any area of the body including your scalp.

    If you’ve ever experienced greasy or oily roots, you probably know that sebum on the scalp works the same way as sebum on your face. That means the pores on your head can also have product buildup, bacteria, dirt, and oil, resulting in pimples. Understanding where your scalp acne is coming from and how to treat it can be confusing, so if you’ve come across a few bumps on your scalp and don’t know what to do, we’re here to help.

    We spoke to a dermatologist about a few things you should know about scalp acne, including what causes it, how to treat it, and how to prevent it.

    How We Choose Products

    Price around $36 on Amazon

    This product combines salicylic acid with a gentle alpha hydroxy acid, citric acid, and glycerin to exfoliate and moisturize the scalp at the same time.

    It is formulated without fragrance and parabens. It is also cruelty-free. However, it does contain sulfates.

    The company says that this shampoo helps folliculitis, dandruff, and ingrown hairs. It recommends using the product 13 times a week on the scalp and beard area, if required.

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    Medication For Scalp Acne

    Some women find that oral contraceptives help treat their acne, says Dr. Prystowsky, which is definitely something to bear in mind if youre not having much luck with other treatments. Additional prescription medications for treating more persistent acne, may also include isotretinoin, topical antibiotics, or oral antibiotics. She also counsels that in cases of cystic acne on the scalp steroid injections are also helpful.

    General Maintenance For Scalp Acne

    How to Get Rid of Scalp &  Back of Neck Acne Naturally!

    After washing your hair and the scalp is dry, apply a moisturizer to condition your hair. Avoid using too much heat on your hair. Instead, opt for an air-drying method or gentle towel drying. Remember to have your scalp checked regularly by visiting a doctor or dermatologist every six months or so. If you have had acne in other parts of your body before, then a dermatologist should be able to diagnose acne more easily from looking at your skin elsewhere.


    There are a variety of reasons for scalp acne and we covered the most common reasons in detail. The treatments range from prescriptions all the way down to household items that can be found in supermarkets and over-the-counter medicines that are widely available at most pharmacies. We hope that you are able to determine the best path forward for your treatment and always urge you to consult your dermatologist or pharmacist. If you are prescribed any medications, head over to our medication search tool at to see if you are eligible for up to 75% off retail value at any of our over 60,000 participating pharmacies nationwide.

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