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Make your own dandruff shampoo

Is a Solution for:
Oily Hair, Thinning Hair & Shedding, Dry or Brittle Hair
July 12, 2009 Reviewed by Marta 11 Comments
No one wants shoulder snow (especially after reading Kate's explanation of the origins of the yeast feast on your scalp), but who wants to be a slave to Head & Shoulders. For a natural alternative, we created a dandruff shampoo formula that also removes product buildup. I've been trying this out and my hair has never felt cleaner - a result that I attribute to the moringa oil, an amazing natural cleanser. It also looks super healthy and somehow brighter.

All you need to do is get some shampoo as a base - preferably a simple botanical one without any crap in it. I used Aesop's Sage Scalp Cleansing Shampoo. To this, I added apple cider vinegar and apple juice for scavenging dandruff, moringa oil to add cleansing power and a huge number of nutrients for hair and scalp health, lemon juice as a buildup remover, and rosemary for its antiseptic qualities. So grab some sudser and follow our step by step guide:


1/4 cup shampoo

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

3 tablesppons apple juice

1 teaspoon moringa extract

1 teaspoon lemon juice

2 sprigs chopped rosemary


  1. Pour 1/4 cup of shampoo of your choice as a base into a small mixing bowl.

  2. Apple cider vinegar removes dandruff. Add in one tablespoon.

  3. That pesky shoulder snow doesn't stand a chance with the addition of three tablespoons or apple juice (organic, of course).

  4. Blondes will be all the brighter for a good squeeze of lemon juice. Brunettes will enjoy the removal of product buildup.

  5. Finely chopped rosemary is a great antiseptic for a healthy scalp. You could substitute ground clove if you prefer.

  6. Whisk and transfer to a plastic bottle. I am so pleased with the results that I'll definitely be making this again.

  • October 19, 2011

    by GAbba

    DIY stuff never works

  • July 19, 2011

    by julie pobocan

    where can i buy moringa oil

  • December 9, 2010

    by kannd86

    So I tried this DIY dandruff shampoo and, unfortunately, it's not working for me. I used Burt's Bees volumizing shampoo as a base and followed the directions exactly. I threw in a drop of tea tree oil and oregano oil for good measure.
    My first thought was that it was too liquidy and didn't lather. Instead of pouring it in my hand first, I started pouring it directly onto my scalp. I have to use a lot in order to feel like it's gotten everywhere. I rub it in with my fingertips then let it sit while I wash my face.
    I've been using it for about a month and I guess my scalp just doesn't respond to these ingredients. I had high hopes for this shampoo because I do hate having to use the drugstore dandruff shampoos knowing they contain all sorts of bad ingredients, but it's the active ingredients in those that control my dandruff. I wish someone made a shampoo with a strong active ingredient and all the rest natural.
    Anyway, thanks for sharing the recipe. Even though it didn't work for me, I'm sure it will work for others. And I'm sure this bottle of moringa oil that I have now has many other uses.

  • October 24, 2010

    by marta

    Hi Kim, I can't find the ingredients for Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle shampoo, but the EWG gives its a moderate hazard rating and I have read some reviewers complaining that it gave them itchy scalps.

  • October 24, 2010

    by Kim

    Would the Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle shampoo be a good base for this DIY shampoo? I already have some, but never tried it on its own because the last natural tea tree shampoo didn't work for me (JASON eucalyptus something or other).
    Also, would it hurt to add a few drops of oil of oregano? I think I have some of that in the house and heard it was good for dandruff (or bad for dandruff, depending how you look at it lol).

  • July 13, 2009

    by marta

    Thanks to Mike30 I no longer have to get friends from England to bring me moringa supplies. We can buy it at Moringa for Life (, They are incredibly nice folks there as well. I bought some more moringa oil and couldn't resist the moringa deodorant (will let you know how I get on with that).

  • July 13, 2009

    by marta

    I think adding tea tree would be a very good idea.

  • July 13, 2009

    by Laura

    Where can I buy moringa oil? In a store, or should I order online?

  • July 13, 2009

    by ha


    I use that, and it does not help me at all with the dandruff problem. =(


    Do you think adding tea tree oil to this will help even more?

  • July 12, 2009

    by Jess

    oops, I meant *once dry* it feels normal

  • July 12, 2009

    by Jess

    OR try Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle shampoo. It's $3.99, sulfate and silicone free, and tea tree oil is the second ingredient. If you don't use conditioner, it can be *slightly* drying when you rinse it, but dry feels normal.

    I honestly stopped using my combination of $24 Bumble and Bumble Gentle shampoo and $13 Neutrogena T-Gel. Try it, and if you hate it, it's actually gentle enough as a face wash (for me).

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