We exfoliate our bodies to slough off dead cells in hopes of baby-soft skin. The same special treatment should apply for your scalp. We wash, we condition, we mask, we slather oils—all great beauty habits, but healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp. Enter: scalp scrubs, the latest rage in the world of mane-care products.
Have questions? Intrigued? We’re right there with you, which is why we’re breaking down the benefits plus sharing the scrubs that come with a highly recommended stamp of approval.
Exfoliating with a scrub once a week stimulates hair follicles, removes product buildup, helps rebalance pH levels, and detoxifies the scalp—ultimately promoting healthier hair growth. Read: longer, fuller, less brittle locks.
Editor’s tip: The easiest way to apply is by dividing your hair into sections so you can really get to the root of your scalp and then massage the product throughout your hairline.
Ouai Scalp & Body Scrub ($38)
“Ouai Scalp & Body Scrub gently exfoliates and cleanses. It’s only natural that you’ll need to gently exfoliate (prior to shampooing) your scalp in order to remove product buildup. It includes ingredients such as sugar to unclog, probiotics to strengthen your biological defenses against bad bacteria, and coconut oil to nourish and moisturize your skin and scalp.” — Jen Atkin
Christophe Robin Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt ($53)
“This scrub is gentle and effective. I love using it once every other week to get rid of any product buildup. It gives me the shiniest, fluffiest hair days. Tip: pair it with their detangling gelée for the best detox combo.” — Christina Kassi
Frank Body Caffeinated Scalp Scrub ($19)
“I like how easy this scrub is to apply. There’s no wait time—all you have to do is massage into the root and rinse. It’s my go-to when I’m in a pinch but still want to give my scalp a little extra love.”
Act+Acre Cold Processed Scalp Detox ($42)
“Disclaimer: this technically isn’t a scrub. It’s a scalp detox, but it’s a product I’ve been using for about two months and couldn’t leave it off the list. It’s an oil-based pre-cleanse that contains basil leaf, which is super stimulating to the hair follicle. I’ll apply first thing in the shower because it takes 20 minutes to fully work its magic. While it’s soaking in, I’ll exfoliate the rest of my body, shave my legs, and enjoy a leisurely rinse.” — Michelle Scanga
Ouai Scalp & Body Scrub ($38)
“I have a lot of hair, so to keep my scalp fresh, I like to use scalp scrubs to exfoliate and relieve dry and itchy skin, especially in the summer. I love the Ouai Scalp & Body Scrub to exfoliate and keep my hair growing healthy and full.” — Negin Mirsalehi
ohii Deep Sea Scalp + Body Scrub ($16)
“I love how affordable this scrub is. It has such a clean, fresh scent that really is so soothing. It is not abrasive at all, so it’s perfect for those who might be a little sensitive.”
Zion Health Adama Deep Cleansing Scalp Hair Scrub ($20)
“This scalp scrub is fairly new to me, but so far I love it. It has the juiciest scent ever. It also has argan oil in it, so it’s very nourishing to the scalp and hair. I also think the price point is great compared with others on the market.” — Matt Woodcox of @dirtyboysgetclean
Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Coconut Oil Micro-Exfoliating Shampoo ($42)
“I love this scalp scrub because it uses micro-exfoliators that are super gentle, but still removes buildup without leaving your scalp feeling dry or irritated. It really works on dryness and flakiness for good scalp health, but is moisturizing enough to use several times a week, and it has a refreshing minty scent.” — Melanie Graves