Can You Use Epsom Salt To Treat Dandruff? Here's What To Know

Isn't it amazing when you discover a DIY hack that is readily available at home and actually works? We found a hack for dandruff, a quick fix solution you can do from the comfort of your home. All you need is one humble ingredient – Epsom salt.


Best known for its use as a bath salt to relieve the pain from sore muscles, Epsom salt can also be used for a variety of hair hacks. It is believed to add volume to one's hair, act as a heavy-duty clarifying ingredient, make for a good scalp scrub, and, most importantly, even help treat your dandruff.

Experts have established that the health benefits of Epsom salt are all linked to its magnesium content, as most people are deficient when it comes to this essential mineral. When Epsom salt is dissolved in water, it releases magnesium and sulfate ions, making it a power-packed ingredient.

Does Epsom salt really work on dandruff?

Regarding magnesium in Epsom salt, Bridgette Hill, a trichologist offering individualized hair services and treatments to clients, tells Byrdie that it "stimulates cellular turnover by reducing calcium build-up around the hair follicles. Calcium build-up on the scalp leads to dry flaky scalp and hair shedding and loss."


However, she also cautions that one should determine if the dry flakiness is dandruff and not some underlying, severe skin ailment. "I find that the majority of people who believe they suffer from dandruff, in fact, have more serious scalp concerns such as dermatitis or psoriasis, which require a more comprehensive approach than just a logical anecdotal solution," Hill says. Another common confusion is the one between dandruff and dry scalp.

If, however, you do indeed suffer from dandruff, a sweaty and oily scalp is one of the major causes. Epsom salt helps with the absorption of the excess oil from this area. This is also the case if you live in a humid climate. Another reason for your dandruff could be clogged pores on the scalp, which can be loosened up with the help of salt.


According to Healthline, although Epsom salt may be an excellent addition to your hair care routine, no research has been conducted to support this claim. Therefore, it should be used more as a self-care routine than a medical treatment.

How to use Epsom salt to treat dandruff

The easiest way to apply Epsom salt to your hair is to mix it with a potent oil. Olive oil is an excellent natural conditioner that helps strengthen the scalp. Bridgette Hill tells Byrdie that avocado oil and shea butter are best due to their high fatty acid content. She suggests adding half a teaspoon of salt to three teaspoons of oil. Those with dry hair should use Epsom salt alongside a nourishing conditioner or oil.


This mixture should be massaged onto the head for a few minutes to exfoliate the dead skin cells. It can then be rinsed off with your regular shampoo, and you can even combine it with an anti-dandruff shampoo for added benefits.

As with any experimental DIY project, knowing limitations and potential side effects is important before embarking on it. People with dry hair should avoid Epsom salt for treating dandruff as it tends to dry the hair further. Conditioning your hair after treating it with salt is one way to protect it from potential damage. But it is also essential to keep an eye on your hair's state after using Epsom salt. If you feel that the dandruff is exactly as before or seems to have worsened, you may have an underlying condition that you should not hesitate to get checked out.