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Q. What can cause waxy buildup on the roots of hair?

Answered by
Dr. Suvash Sahu
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 13, 2016 and last reviewed on: Jun 18, 2019

Hello doctor,

I am an 18 year old female. For the past two years, I have had this waxy buildup only on the roots of my hair. It feels sticky, oily and stiff. None of the shampoo I have tried has fixed it. The problem goes away a couple of days after I dye my roots. I am wondering if there may be a problem with my scalp. Please help.

Dr. Suvash Sahu

Cosmetology Dermatology Venereology


Welcome to

I have seen your query and concern.

  • It seems you are having seborrheic capitis.
  • Seborrheic capitis is a papulosquamous disorder involves sebum-rich areas of the body, which is scalp.
  • Intermittent active phases manifesting with burning, scaling and itching and alternating with inactive periods. The activity is increased in winter and early spring with remissions commonly occur in summer.
  • Sometimes, fungal etiology is there. Otherwise, it is idiopathic.

The Probable causes:

Oily skin and excess sebum secretion.

Differential diagnosis:

1. Seborrheic capitis.
2. Tinea capitis.

Probable diagnosis:

Seborrheic capitis.

Treatment plan:

I would suggest you Sebowash (Fluocinolone) shampoo twice weekly. It has to be applied on scalp and left for 15 minutes before you wash. Consult your specialist doctor, discuss with him or her and take the treatment with consent.

Preventive measures:

You should not apply hair oil. You can use conditioner and shampooing regularly rest of the day.

Regarding follow up:

Revert back after a month to a dermatologist online.--->

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