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After spending nearly four decades in the spotlight teaching Americans about why "science rules!" — and serving as the unsung hero of physics classes across the nation — it seems Bill Nye The Science Guy can finally add another honorable title to his long, storied resume: Dandruff aficionado.
Earlier this spring, Nye teamed up with beloved hair care brand Head & Shoulders to explain the science behind dandruff, a phenomenon he says comes down to a microbe called Malassezia globosa.
"There's a fungus among us," Nye recently told Today. "It's not a bacterium, and you are not an unhealthy person if you have this fungus, the fungus is everywhere. It's your genetics, it's your inheritance that makes you respond to it."
But just because you may have been born with the dandruff gene, one that Nye noted "affects people of all ancestries on every continent," in an interview with Allure, that doesn't mean you're stuck rocking flakes forever.
In a new video posted to both his Instagram story and the company's North American social media page, the scientist elucidated how, exactly, the active ingredient in products from Head & Shoulders' Clinical Dandruff Defense Collection keeps fungus at bay.
"We all know that the active ingredient in Head & Shoulders, Zinc Pyrithione or ZPT is a powerful tool for fighting dandruff, but sometimes, dandruff can be real ******* stubborn." Nye said in the clip. "It just won't go away."
So what, exactly, are dandruff sufferers to do if their tried-and-true product isn't as effective as desired? According to Nye, "that's when you call in the big ****," reaching for the brand's Clinical Strength Dandruff Defense + Dry Scalp Rescue Shampoo.
Unlike other Head & Shoulders products, Nye explained that the line tapped a powerful antifungal called Selenium Sulfide, one that seemingly worked so effectively on people with itching and "consistent, visible flakes," he could apparently only express his excitement with explicitives.
But you don't have to take his (curse) word(s) for it. In true science guy fashion, Nye shared an experiment that he claimed illustrated Selenium Sulfide's effectiveness at kicking Malassezia globosa to the curb. The findings of this, he said, seemingly proved the chemical reduced the fungus by 88% in the first week of use, a number that increased 95% by the second week.
"HSCDD is the sharpest tool in the Head & Shoulders toolbox — or bottle," he said. "It's there when you want to say goodbye to stubborn ***** dandruff."
Head & Shoulders' Clinical Strength Dandruff Defense + Dry Scalp Rescue Shampoo retails for $9.99 at ulta.com.