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There’s nothing more relaxing than getting your scalp massaged at the salon. Now, thanks to the latest wave of scalp scrubs, you have an excuse to give your head a little extra TLC at-home. Not only are these exfoliators a simple way to knead away stress in the shower, but they also boost your hair’s overall health.  

“Just like you exfoliate your face, you should exfoliate your scalp,” explains Franck Izquierdo, co-founder of IGK Hair Care. “A traditional shampoo will cleanse your hair, but a scalp scrub will give you a deeper clean and will physically exfoliate away the dirt, oil, and product build-up that can clog hair follicles.” Just like clogged pores on your face can lead to breakouts, clogged follicles on your head can cause dry, itchy scalps, or “even slow hair growth” Izquierdo warns. They’re especially important for those of us whose hair is ninety percent dry shampoo at the end of the week since they detox our manes, giving us a fresh start on Monday.

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From drugstore options like the L’Oreal Paris EverFresh Micro-Exfoliating Scrub to multi-taskers like Ouai’s Scalp and Body Scrub, choosing the right formula comes down to preference (nearly all of them are designed for all hair types). However, Izquierdo recommends picking a salt-free scrub like IGK’s LOW KEY Cleansing Walnut Scrub, because salt can dry out your strands. “It uses sugar and walnut shell powder to gently exfoliate. Plus, it uses apple cider vinegar and peppermint oil to clarify and rebalance the scalp,” he says. Simply, use it one to two times a week in place of your normal shampoo.

A hair product that keeps your scalp healthy and feels like a mini spa treatment? Now that’s a win/win.

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