How to treat chemical burns on scalp?

The frequent or improper use of hair products with harsh chemicals (or at times even mild chemicals) can cause burns on your scalp, which can damage your scalp and thus interfere with the natural way your hair grows

A little redness or irritation is common while getting hair treatments, but chemical burns are not normal and hence should be attended to as soon as possible.The extent of the burn can depend primarily on two factors: The amount of chemical used and the time the scalp was exposed to the chemical.

Causes of Burnt Scalp

  • Over exposure to sun or UV light can give way to sunburned scalp.
  • Continuous exposure to chemical treatments.
  • Coloring your hair frequently.
  • Overuse of heat styling tools.
  • Use of Harsh hair care products.
  • Allergic reactions or improper use of hair products.

How to treat chemical burns on the scalp?

Primary Treatment

  • To treat the burn first off, immediately wash off the product using water and for extra safety make sure to use gloves, because we don’t want an itchy or burning hand on top of the scalp burn. Flush the affected area for a while with water. Make sure to not rub or scratch the burn area.
  • Go to a doctor, get it checked out and use the medications he prescribes and strictly follow the instructions they provide you with. The doctor prescription and treatment may vary depending on the degree of the burn

Secondary Treatment or aftercare

Cold Compress

Apply a cold compress to the affected area. This will help with swelling and pain.

Keep the affected area clean

Make sure to keep your scalp clean and watch out for potential infections. Do not touch the burn area with dirty hands.

Take OTC pain relievers

Over-the-counter painkillers like Tylenol (acetaminophen), Advil(ibuprofen), Aleve (naproxen), etc. to relieve pain that is not relieved by using a cold compress. If you already consulted a doctor, then take the painkiller your doctor prescribed.

Use antibacterial ointment

Apply an antibacterial ointment on your burn scab using a cotton swab. This will prevent infections and allow them to heal faster and provide a soothing effect.

Use mild shampoo

After your burn scab is healed or when the doctor says it is okay to wash your hair using shampoo make sure that you use a mild one and stay from harsh chemicals for some time.

Nourishing conditioner

Make sure for all this you get doctors’ permission if the burn is deep and serious. Use a mild conditioner to nourish your hair and scalp because they are probably really dry from the harsh exposure to chemicals.

Stay away from heat styling tools

For some time after the burning incident make sure to stay from blow-drying, straightening, and all other hairstyles created using heat. The scalp is healing so give it some time if you do not want to incur another burn.

Be careful while washing your head.

Try to wash your hair in cold or room temperature water, then slowly you can shift to lukewarm water and then the temperature you normally take a shower in. It is always good for your hair to wash in lukewarm water.

Home-made scalp burn salve

Mix the following together and apply it to the scar with gauze. The ingredients will help soothe the burn and will promote the growth of tissues in the area and prevent infection.

  • 1/4 cup raw honey,
  • 1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon beeswax
  • 1/2 teaspoon aloe vera gel or juice, or rosewater
  • 1 tablespoon Sea Buckthorn oil, optional

Burnt scalp remedies

  • Heat the beeswax over in a double boiler.
  • Add and melt the coconut oil completely once the beeswax is nearly melted.
  • Stir in honey and sea buckthorn oil and mix it in heat till these become one mixture.
  • Remove from the heat, add aloe vera gel or juice or rosewater briskly whisk till a homogenous mixture is formed, then pour into your containers.

How to treat Burnt hair?

Burnt hair is another problem that may or may not accompany burnt scalp. The reasons are too many chemicals, too much heat styling etc.

Use good quality shampoos that are specially formulated for damaged hair. Try to avoid shampoos with sulfates and use shampoos that contain glycerin and panthenol.

Here is the video about treatment of chemical burnt hair.

Hot oil treatment for burnt hair

1. Warmup Oil

Warm up any essential oil or natural oil that is beneficial to your hair. Massage the lukewarm oil into your hair and scalp

2. Wrap your oiled head

Wrap it up with a shower cap or plastic wrap. Wait for 30-45 minutes and then rinse your hair. This will help bring back some of the shine and moisture of your pre burnt hair.

Hair Masks to cure burnt

We all are well aware about the benefits of hair masks. Hair mask is a very essential part of hair care. We should apply a few hair masks. Following are these:

1. Mayo-egg mask

Preparation of Mayo-egg mask

Mix mayonnaise and egg to get a mixture with not so loose yet not so thick consistency.


  1. Apply the mixture to your hair (cover every strand). This might sound nasty but trust the process.
  2. Cover it with a plastic wrap or shower cap and rinse it off at first with lukewarm water and then with cold water.

2. Conditioning oil mask

Preparation of mask

  1. One tablespoon of a protein-enriching shampoo
  2. One tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  3. One tablespoon of a moisturizing conditioner.
  4. Take a bowl and mix it well


  1. Massage the mixture into your hair and leave it in for about 20-minutes
  2. Rinse your hair with water.


Prevention is always better than cure. So make sure to give your hair a break between coloring, treatments, styling and so on. And be careful of what goes into your hair and who handles your hair. Keep notice on how and why you got scalp burn the first time and avoid making the same mistake. To prevent getting a burn in the future try to keep note on the causes of scalp burn mentioned above. Be aware of your hair for better care.

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