Pink Scalp Cause


Disease and Hair Styles Can Be The Culprit

If you notice that your hair is thinning and the scalp underneath is pink, this can indicate inflammation or a scalp disease, such as scalp psoriasis or dermatitis. Traction alopecia can also cause a pink scalp. Traction alopecia occurs when you have consistently pulled your hair into a style that causes it to break, such as weaving or a tight bun. Increased sebum (oil) production can result when you are routinely styling your hair in a manner that is pulling on it or prolonging pressure. The increased sebum can cause thinning hair as well as an inflamed scalp.

Thinning hair.
Thinning hair. (Image: Polka Dot Images/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

Other Possibilities

Ringworm can cause a pink scalp. Autoimmune diseases such as lupus can result in a pink scalp along with thinning hair. If you pull on your own hair, which is called trichotlillomania, this can result in an irritated scalp that turns pink, as well as loss of hair, according to

Ringworm close up.
Ringworm close up. (Image: Elena Stepanova/iStock/Getty Images)

Back Off On The Bleach

If you are overly processing it, this can cause your scalp to turn pink. Your scalp may be having an allergic reaction to the chemicals that have been used on your hair. The scalp may actually turn red. Chemical treatments can cause hair thinning and loss.

Bleached hair.
Bleached hair. (Image: Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images)


The Mayo Clinic notes that plague psoriasis can occur in the scalp and it tends to be chronic. This is the most common form of psoriasis. Your scalp will turn red or pink and be covered with silvery scales. The areas that are affected will be oval or circular. Another kind of psoriasis is specifically called scalp psoriasis, which results in heavily crusted plaque areas and dry, scaly skin. The plaque can peel or flake off in crusty clumps.

Psoriasis on scalp.
Psoriasis on scalp. (Image: rob_lan/iStock/Getty Images)

Actinic Keratosis

If your scalp has been overly exposed to the sun, you may be experiencing actinic keratoses, according to Mayo Clinic Health Horizons writing for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island. A lesion or lesions will form on your scalp and your scalp may turn pink. When actinic keratosis occurs, it happens in the top layer of your skin, which is the epidermis. When your skin cells are damaged from sun exposure, the color and texture of your skin, including your scalp, will change and lesions, bumps and blotches can occur.

Too much sun exposure can cause scalp issues.
Too much sun exposure can cause scalp issues. (Image: loongar/iStock/Getty Images)

Seek Help

Ask your hairdresser or your physician what type of anti-bacterial shampoo she would recommend. This will get rid of bacteria, if that’s what is causing your pink scalp, while also protecting and moisturizing your hair. A shampoo of this nature will deeply penetrate into your scalp.

Smiling hairdresser.
Smiling hairdresser. (Image: Creatas/Creatas/Getty Images)

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