Getting a scalp massage at your hairstylist is a top-tier part of the salon experience. Not only does it feel great, but studies show that scalp massages can encourage hair growth and thickness by promoting circulation and stimulating the hair follicles. However, when you’re not in the salon for a regular visit to a hairstylist or massage therapist, self-massaging your scalp with a scalp massager (or shampoo brush as some call them) is an easy way to get the same benefits.
These handheld, tool-shaped devices typically have soft silicone or synthetic bristles that help to massage and exfoliate the scalp while removing any dry skin or product buildup, says dermatologist Hadley King. Many of these tools can be used on both wet or dry hair, though they’re most popular as an in-shower scalp treatment — also known as shampoo brushes.
While you may be tempted to simply rub the scalp massager on your head, it’s important that you read the directions and make sure you’re using the device correctly. Heather Woolery-Lloyd, MD, a board-certified dermatologist, warns that if you use the scalp massager improperly, it could damage your hair follicles.
To properly use a scalp massager, apply your preferred hair oil to the massager and then rub it onto your scalp in gentle, circular motions. The oils are a bonus because they add moisture and a pleasant scent to the scalp massage, making it more relaxing. For the best results, experts recommend massaging your scalp with a scalp massager 2-3 times per week for healthier hair and skin.