Dealing with dandruff is quite a tricky matter for many people. Dandruff is actually a type of eczema that happens on the scalp, causing small flakes of dry skin on the area. The primary cause of dandruff is thought to be a yeast or fungal infection, and antifungal treatments have shown benefits in reducing the symptoms. Nevertheless, there are several shampoos on the market designed to treat dandruff, such as Nizoral vs Head and Shoulders. However, they are not all the same.
Nizoral’s Active Ingredient
As said above, there are several different antifungal treatments that can help reduce and ultimately eliminate the symptoms of dandruff such as itching, scaling, and flaking. However, those treatments may use different ingredients. Nizoral is an anti-dandruff shampoo which is based on ketoconazole 1%. It is designed to control itching, scaling, and flaking, associated with dandruff.
Ketoconazole is actually a strong and potent substance. This substance used to be available only by prescription due to the strength and potential side effects, but it is now allowed and available in over-the-counter shampoos with a limit on the maximum concentration. Compared to other treatments, ketoconazole is generally considered as the strongest and most potent, suitable for dealing with severe dandruff cases. However, it may not work on some people, and some people may be allergic to it.
Ketoconazole works by slowing down the growth of the fungi which cause infection. It is also able to relieve the irritation caused by the fungal infection. See our previous post about Regenepure vs Nizoral here!
When To Use Nizoral
You should choose Nizoral vs Head and Shoulders if your dandruff case is severe. If you have tried other anti-dandruff shampoos including Head and Shoulders and they don’t work, then it is the time to use Nizoral. This is the strongest treatment for chronic dandruff currently available.
You can start with the over-the-counter Nizoral shampoo, which contains ketoconazole 1%. However, if it doesn’t provide enough power in relieving the symptoms, you should consult with your doctor. You may need to get a prescription and buy the prescription Nizoral shampoo which packs ketoconazole 2%.
When Not To Use Nizoral
Some people may be allergic to ketoconazole, so you should test the shampoo on your skin before actually using it. If you don’t experience any allergy reaction, you are good to go. If you experience an allergy reaction, you should not use Nizoral or any other ketoconazole shampoo.
An allergy reaction may be indicated by redness, itching, skin rash, headaches, dizziness, and difficulty breathing. You should stop using Nizoral if the dandruff symptoms worsen or don’t improve within 2 – 4 weeks.
Also, Nizoral is only for external use. You should not use it on a scalp area that is broken or heavily inflamed. If this is the case, you have to consult your doctor.
How To Use Nizoral
Nizoral is not for regular daily use. It should be used every 3 or 4 days for up to 8 weeks, or as directed by the doctor. Once the dandruff symptoms have gone, you should only use Nizoral occasionally to control dandruff.
To use Nizoral, you need to wash your hair thoroughly first. Apply the shampoo on wet hair, and lather generously. Leave the shampoo for about five minutes before rinsing, then repeat the application once again. Make sure that the shampoo doesn’t get into your eyes or any open wound, otherwise rinse thoroughly with water.
Head and Shoulders’s Active Ingredient
Nizoral vs Head and Shoulders use different active ingredients. The active ingredient in Head and Shoulders is pyrithione zinc. This substance is milder and gentler compared to the other treatments. Hence, it is suitable for treating mild dandruff cases and for regular use to prevent the return of the dandruff problems.
So, how does Head and Shoulders’s pyrithione zinc work? As explained above, dandruff is caused by a yeast infection. The yeast consumes your scalp secretions and produces oleic acid. The oleic acid may irritate the skin, and the irritation sparks an increased cell production. The increased cell production also increases the number of dead skin cells, which become dandruff. Pyrithione zinc is able to destroy the yeast’s cell membranes, thereby killing them. However, the substance does not always work; it may not be able to kill yeast cells that have grown strong enough.
When To Use Head and Shoulders
If your dandruff case is rather mild, Head and Shoulders is a suitable choice. This shampoo is suitable for people who only experience occasional dandruff in specific weathers or seasons. For example, you don’t normally experience dandruff, but it happens after you go through a particularly hot day with heavy sweating.
Head and Shoulders is also a suitable choice for regular use to prevent dandruff. So, if you have eliminated your dandruff problems and you don’t want them to come back, using Head and Shoulders regularly as directed is a good idea.
When Not To Use Head and Shoulders
You should stop using Head and Shoulders if you have used the shampoo for some time and it does not give any improvement. Most probably, the infecting fungi have developed a resistance against the active ingredient.
Head and Shoulders may cause dryness or irritation on sensitive skin. If you have a dry scalp, you should choose the Head and Shoulders shampoo that comes with almond oil; it is specifically designed for treating dandruff on dry scalp.
How To Use Head and Shoulders
One of the differences between Nizoral vs Head and Shoulders is that Head and Shoulders is suitable for regular use. When you are experiencing the dandruff symptoms, you may use Head and Shoulders every time you shampoo. For dandruff control, you should use Head and Shoulders at least twice a week, or follow your doctor’s directions.
Shake the bottle well before use. Wash and wet the hair, then massage the shampoo into the scalp. Finally, rinse thoroughly. You may repeat the application if you want to.
Nizoral vs Head and Shoulders
Nizoral is a more powerful shampoo suitable for treating severe dandruff cases. Nizoral uses ketoconazole, which should only be used occasionally for controlling the dandruff symptoms, and not for regular use. For a mild or occasional dandruff case, Head and Shoulders is more suitable. The active ingredient of Head and Shoulders is pyrithione zinc. It is suitable for regular use to prevent the return of dandruff.