Scalp Scrub Showdown - Part 2

By Monday, December 27, 2021 , , , , , , ,

Last fall I did a post where I compared four different scalp scrubs, Scalp Scrub Showdown. This late fall I decided I should do a part two to my Scalp Scrub Showdown. 

This time I chose the brands Sephora Collection, Marc Anthony, Nexxus and Shea Moisture. Most of them are pretty affordable, with the Nexxus being the most I spent on one at $18.99 plus tax.

First off I followed the directions for each brand, which very much varied. I also was only washing my hair once a week so that I had a good amount of buildup. I also used my trusty Sephora Collection Scalp Massager (which seems to be discontinued).
Sodium Chloride, Aqua (Water), Sodium Methyl Lauroyl Taurate, Sodium Cocoamphoacetate, Lauryl Glucoside, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Citric Acid, Hydrated Silica, Acetum (Vinegar), Coco-Glucoside, Glyceryl Oleate, Sodium Lauryl Glucose Carboxylate, Lauric Acid, Parfum (Fragrance), Sodium Methyltaurate, Potassium Sorbate, Polyquaternium-7, Sodium Citrate, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Sorbic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Tocopherol, Hydrogenated Palm Glycerides Citrate, Lecithin, Ascorbyl Palmitate.
This one is a scrub and a shampoo all in one, you are just supposed to use it when cleansing your hair. The texture is reasonably thick and gritty, the first ingredient is salt and it is a pretty coarse size so it dose a good job of scuffing the dead skin and gunk from your scalp. There is also apple cider vinegar and a few other acids to help calcify the scalp and hair.
I will say I ended up scrubbing this one into my scalp for a longer time then I think is reasonable.  Mainly because I tried another scrub the week before and it did nothing when I looked at my scalp. So I wanted to be extra thorough.  As well the instructions said to apply it scalp to ends, so I felt I used more than I needed. My hair got incredibly tangled after using it. While conditioning my hair it felt a lot better, but ended up shedding more hair then I could imagine. 
After my hair dried I noticed it felt super soft and had lots of body, especially at the roots and my scalp felt only minorly dry, which was actually great for me.

  • Did a good job getting my scalp clean
  • nice light scent
  • large enough salt crystals to do a good job
  • harsh on the hair
Overall observations:
This scrub has a pleasant and mild scent that I really only notice when I sniff the tub. The salt is just gritty enough to do a good job. My hair felt really healthy and soft after using it. I can see myself continuing to use it on my hair until it is used up, while I try not to use it too much on my hair.

Marc Anthony Hair & Scalp Detox Purifying Scalp Scrub with Mineral Salt
Sodium Chloride, Aqua/Water/Eau, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Cocamide MEA, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Phenoxyethanol, Parfum, Benzoic Acid, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil, Dehydroacetic Acid, Citric Acid, Hexyl Cinnamal, Limonene, Citral
This came in a tiny one use packet, so I was a little paranoid I was going to mess it up and have to buy another. In the end the packet worked out pretty well for me. According to Marc Anthony, the key ingredients to this one are Mineral Salt and Peppermint Oil, which I guess ok đŸ€·.

This one says to shampoo before using it, so I did and then I awkwardly roped it open in my shower and used it. It felt like an ordinary scrub with a minty scent. Frankly it wasn't that memorable and I really should have taken notes right away.
The end results was nice hair and scalp. There was truly nothing special about it but it did a good job (not fantastic because my hair still had build up)

  • Small portion
  • worked to remove scalp buildup
  • Left my hair feeling nice
  • Pricy at $4 for one use at 50 ml it really is the most pricy one in the bunch.
  • There is no full sized option, you have to buy single use every time you want to sue it.
Overall observations:
This would be a better option if it was available in a full size not just a packet. It didn't get my hair so clean even with a clarifying shampoo being used with it first, I am just not sure it is worth the money or hassle at this point.

Nexxus Sulfate-Free Scalp Scrub Exfoliating and Nourishing Hair Treatment Detox Hair Care
Sucrose, Water (Eau), Glycerin, Sodium Lauroyl, Methyl Isethionate, Cocamide Mea, Propanediol, Glycerol Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Silica, Sodium Lauroamphoacetate, Sea Sale (Sel Marin), Hydrolyzed Elastin, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, C12-15 Alykyl Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, PEG-150 Distearate, Cocamide MIPA, Fragrance (Parfum), Sodium Benzoate, Trisodium Ethyledediamine Disuccinate, Caprylyl Glycol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Limonene, Linalool.
I really liked this scrub, it has salt and sugar in it to help scuff off flakes on the scalp. You are supposed to use it instead of shampoo so you should apply it all the way down your hair. I found my hair minorly matted up as I did this.
  • Works well to scuff of the buildup on my scalp
  • Didn't dry out my scalp
  • Easy to find at a drug store
  • Hair still had a substantial amount of buildup on it
Overall observations:
The sugar and salt aren't as large as the Sephora Collection scrub so they dissolve quicker and aren't given the same opportunity to scuff your scalp and hair as a result. It is almost as good as the Sephora one, but not quite. On that note, I took the below photo to compare the Sephora, Nexxus and last years The Body Shop scrubs. You can see the Sephora is slightly larger, but that The Body Shop has the largest salt chunks by far. 
Aqua, Lithium Magnesium Sodium Silicate, Glycerin (Vegetable/ Végétale), Menthyl Lactate, Parfum (Essential Oil Blend / Mélange d'huiles essentielles), Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter***, Salicylic Acid, Charcoal Powder, Panthenol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa Pod) Potash, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Elaeis Guineensis (Palm) Kernel Oil, Xanthan Gum, Menthol, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil, Coffea Arabica (Coffee), Quercus Suber Bark, Plantago Major Leaf Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Tamarindus Indica Fruit Extract, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Triethyl Citrate, Caprylyl Glycol, Benzoic Acid.
Last but not least, is the most disappointing scrub in the bunch. This one caught my eye because of its unique packaging and the fact it used charcoal in it. Also it was at my local Walmart and I figured I should just grab it.
This one comes in a tube with an applicator to help you dispense it to your scalp and massage it in. Since my hair isn't under 2 inches in length the applicator quickly became useless. I ended up using quite a lot of product and it wasn't the easiest to apply, when it really should be.

With African Black Soap, Bamboo Charcoal and Tea Tree oil it is supposed to in conjunction with the 'nubs' on the applicator help unclog pores and remove 'impurities' when massaged in and left for 5 minutes. I left this on for 10. My scalp really tingled and I felt quite cool while using it and for quite a while later. This is due to the menthol and tea tree oil in it. It also has Menthyl Lactate and Salicylic Acid to chemically exfoliate the scalp.
Sadly this just left my scalp tingly, and with build up, quite a bit of it too. There wasn't much impressing going on here with this one. I even tried it another week with move vigor to my application massage and still, buildup on the hair (although better then the first time).

Overall I got buildup on the scalp and hair, plus the menthol felt great but really dried out my scalp after a day.

  • I have none
  • I could only find this at Walmart, so it isn't easy to find
  • It didn't work well
  • Made my scalp dry
  • Did not work well
  • Applicator is useless.
Overall observations:
I cannot think of one good thing to say about this scrub, not one. It just was terrible to apply, it felt nice on the scalp and then nothing. It was all for show. I could feel the buildup with my nails still on my scalp. The fact I waited an entire week to try it another time and still was let down really shows how lousy it is.

Left my scalp feeling the best: Sephora Collection - My scalp feels actually better after using it, never dry or itchy.

Left my scalp feeling the worst: SheaMoisture – My scalp was very dry and irritated after using it.

Best at removing buildup off scalp and hair: Sephora Collection – The large chunks of salt really did a great job of scuffing my scalp clean.

Left my hair feeling the best: Marc Anthony– While it didn't stick out to me as the most memorable, what I will note it left my hair actually feeling nice.

Left my hair feeling the worst: SheaMoisture- This product was just straight trash.

So there are four more scalp scrub reviews for you. What did I learn this time? I learned neat packaging and ingredients don't actually do much and I should stick to physical scrubs that can remove the gunk I am trying to get rid of. 

I also learned that the drug store costs just about the same as Sephora for this one. I paid $18.99 for the Nexxus and $15.00 for the Shea Moisture while the Sephora cost me $14 (actually less I got it for 30% off). Heck I paid $4 for one use of the Marc Anthony. I would never pay these if I knew the Sephora one was the cheapest and best performing at the start. 

Finally, since my hair is almost all grown back, the thickness in volume makes actually getting scrubs to my scalp much more of a challenge. Using a scalp massager is still the absolute best way to massage scrubs into your scalp.

Overall I enjoyed this process again, except the washing my hair just once a week part. Scalp scrubs seemed to have joined my weekly routine and I really enjoy using them.

Have you tried any scalp scrubs yet? What do you think of them?
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