TGel vs TSal: Choosing the Right Scalp Solution for Relief

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If you’ve ever wondered about the difference between T/Gel and T/Sal or which one will treat your scalp condition best, this guide is here to help!

These medicated shampoos are specially formulated to treat dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis, scalp psoriasis, and other scalp conditions. They can help clear flaky scalps, break down skin cell buildup, and reduce itching and inflammation. 

But which is the best shampoo for your needs?

In this guide, we’ll look at how Neutrogena T/Sal and Neutrogena T/Gel work, their active ingredients, and the differences between the shampoos. This will help you decide which therapeutic shampoo will be best for your symptoms.

What is T/Gel Shampoo?

Neutrogena T/Gel Shampoo is a medicated shampoo used to treat mild scalp conditions, including seborrheic dermatitis, psoriasis, and dandruff. 

Its active ingredient, coal tar extract, is an effective deep cleanser for your scalp, removing flakes and treating minor scalp infections. 

T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo is also available in an Extra Strength version, which contains more coal tar extract than the regular formulation. This can be used to treat scalp conditions that have more severe symptoms. 

Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo
$52.05 ($11.83 / Fl Oz)

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03/10/2024 08:57 pm GMT

What Does T/Gel Do?

Neutrogena T/Gel shampoo is an excellent choice if you suffer from mild symptoms associated with scalp conditions. 

It offers fast relief from the discomfort of a dry, itchy scalp and the coal tar extract also helps to reduce redness, flaking, and scaling. 

T/Gel is easy to use and mild enough to be used daily, even on sensitive scalps. Using T/Gel at least two times a week or according to your doctor’s instructions is recommended. 

T/Gel Shampoo Ingredients

Coal tar extract is the main active ingredient in T/Gel shampoo. Coal tar has been used for treating scalp conditions for hundreds of years and is thought to work by slowing skin cell growth.

This helps reduce the inflammation, itching and flaking caused by dandruff, psoriasis, and other scalp issues. 

Other ingredients in this shampoo include Sodium laureth sulfate and Cocamidopropyl betaine to cleanse your scalp and hair. 

Neutrogena T/Gel Shampoo Side Effects

You may experience mild side effects when using T/Gel, such as a skin irritation or your scalp becoming dry, red, or irritated. These usually resolve themselves if you continue using the product.

However, T/Gel is unsuitable for anyone allergic to coal tar, and you should not use it if you have rashes or broken skin on your scalp. 

If you notice any allergic reaction to this product, seek emergency medical advice and stop using the shampoo immediately.

close up of flakes on a scalp

What is T/Sal Shampoo?

Neutrogena T/Sal Shampoo is a therapeutic scalp shampoo. It’s recommended by dermatologists to soothe itching and clear scalp buildup and flaky scalp caused by severe skin conditions like dandruff and chronic scalp psoriasis. 

This gentle formulation will leave your hair and scalp feeling clean and refreshed without drying them out.

As well as removing dead skin cells and sebum buildup, T/Sal unclogs pores and clears away any residue of styling products and conditioners. 

Neutrogena T/Sal Therapeutic Shampoo, Scalp Build-Up Control
$21.90 ($2.43 / Fl Oz)
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03/06/2024 07:17 pm GMT

What Does T/Sal Do?

Neutrogena T/Sal Shampoo is ideal if you have problems with a flaky and crusty scalp. It is a powerful deep-cleaning shampoo that eliminates the crusty scalp build up of natural oils and skin cells caused by dandruff, psoriasis, and seborrheic dermatitis. 

It can also give long lasting relief from an itchy and inflamed scalp infection, reducing the urge to scratch which can cause hair loss. 

T/Sal is gentle enough to be used daily to maintain a healthy scalp and should be used at least twice weekly or as your doctor advises. It starts working after just one application, but you will see the best results after using it for a few weeks. 

T/Sal Shampoo Ingredients

The main active ingredient in T/Sal shampoo, salicylic acid, works by breaking down skin cells and hard sebum buildup. This makes it an excellent solution for severe dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis, or psoriasis. 

T/Sal medicated shampoo contains gentle cleansers that clean your hair and scalp without drying them out, and is free from added colors, preservatives, and fragrances.

The formulation is mild enough to be used daily and should be used at least twice per week or as your doctor advises. 

Neutrogena T/Sal Shampoo Side Effects

Salicylic acid can cause a severe but rare allergic reaction. This can result in symptoms including intense itching, hives, breathing difficulties, light-headedness, or swelling of the lips, tongue, throat, or face.

If you notice any allergic reaction to this anti dandruff shampoo, stop using it and seek medical advice immediately.

my hair after using Neutrogena tgel shampoo
I like to use Neutrogena T Gel shampoo a few times a month to keep my dandruff in check.

TGel vs TSal: Similarities

There are many similarities between these two shampoos:

  • They’re both medicated shampoos.
  • You can buy T/Sal and T/Gel shampoos over the counter.
  • Both are made by Neutrogena.
  • Both shampoos target scalp conditions like dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis, and psoriasis.

Both products are also used in the same way. Gently massage a small amount of T/Gel or T/Sal into your wet hair and scalp. Leave the lather to work for a few minutes, then rinse and dry your hair as normal.

Either shampoo can be used daily, but you should use it at least twice per week or more frequently, according to your doctor or dermatologist’s advice.

T Gel vs T Sal: Differences

Here’s a summary of the main differences between T/Gel and T/Sal to help you choose between them:

Active Ingredients 

T/Gel shampoo features coal tar extract as the main active ingredient, which will deep cleanse your scalp to stop the source of your scalp problems. 

The main active ingredient in Neutrogena T/Sal shampoo is salicylic acid, which is more effective at breaking down a hard buildup of dead skin cells and sebum on your scalp.  

Appearance and Fragrance

T/Gel shampoo is a dark brown color and has a powerful scent of tar. You may prefer to use a highly-scented conditioner after this shampoo to mask the scent.

T/Sal shampoo is clear in color and has a light antiseptic scent that smells quite medicinal. 

T Gel vs T Sal: Customer Reviews

Customer reviews can be a great way to see how effective a product is. Both T/Gel and T/Sal have many online reviews, so let’s examine how their Amazon ratings compare.

Over 10,000 bottles of Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo Original Formula were sold in the month before this post was written. At the time of writing, it has an average score of 4.6 stars off nearly 9000 ratings, with 76% giving it a perfect 5-star rating and only 3% awarding a 1-star rating.

Neutrogena T/Sal Therapeutic Shampoo scores similarly, with 77% 5-star and 4% 1-star ratings. However, this product sold around 800 bottles in the previous month and only has about 900 ratings in total.

So, both products appear very effective and popular with their users, but T/Gel may be better known than T/Sal. 

woman shampooing hair using shampoo for low porosity with sodium c14-16 olefin sulfonate

T Gel vs T Sal Shampoo: Which To Use?

Now that you have all the details about these two medicated shampoos, you might be wondering which one to pick. 

T Gel is probably used by more people than T/Sal, but that doesn’t mean it’s more effective. Each shampoo has different benefits and will suit different needs.

If you have more severe scalp conditions, like excessive flaking or buildup on your scalp, the salicylic acid in T/Sal medicated shampoo will be more effective.

But T/Gel would be a good choice if you have less severe scalp conditions that don’t cause much buildup, like mild psoriasis, dandruff symptoms, or an itchy scalp. The coal tar extract it contains will help relieve flaking and scalp itching, but it could take a few weeks to take full effect. 

I personally use the T Gel shampoo to control my dandruff and itchy scalp. It works well even though I don’t like the smell. I alternate it with my clarifying shampoo and regular shampoos.

Ultimately, your decision may be a matter of personal preference. If you’re struggling to decide, you could try using one brand for a while and switch to the other if you don’t see good results.

Whichever shampoo you try first, you should give it a few weeks to work. 


If you need more information about choosing between Neutrogena T/Gel and T/Sal, here are the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions:

Can You Use Neutrogena T/Gel or T/Sal Every Day?

Neutrogena T/Gel and T/Sal are both gentle enough for everyday use. 

Can I Use T/Gel and T/Sal Together?

T/Sal and T/Gel are both very potent shampoos that can occasionally cause scalp irritation and side effects. Combining the two shampoos may increase the risk of side effects like intense itching or breathing difficulties.

If you want to use T/Gel and T/Sal together, you should consult your doctor or dermatologist first. They may advise using both shampoos if your scalp is severely affected and will be able to tell you how to proceed safely.

Does T/Gel or T/Sal Damage Color-Treated Hair?

Neither of these products is marked as color-safe. T/Gel contains coal tar extract, which can discolor blonde hair or hair that has been color-treated. However, this effect is usually temporary. 

T/Sal contains Salicylic acid, an ingredient that could alter or fade your hair color. 

How Frequently Should I Use T/Gel or T/Sal Shampoos, and for How Long?

T/Gel and T/Sal shampoos should be used at least two times a week or as your doctor directs you. You may need to use the shampoo for several weeks and should see an improvement during this time. 

TSal vs TGel: Which One Should You Pick?

This guide has explained the difference between Neutrogena T/Sal and Neutrogena T/Gel, and hopefully has made choosing the right shampoo for your scalp condition easier. 

Your decision will partly come down to personal choice. However, generally speaking, T/Gel is more effective at treating mild scalp conditions, while T/Sal is better suited to more severe crusting and scalp conditions.

Side effects from using T/Gel or T/Sal are rare, but carrying out a patch test before using a therapeutic shampoo for the first time is recommended.

If you experience any side effects or find that your symptoms are worsening, you should stop using the shampoo and seek medical advice right away.

T/Gel and T/Sal are both high-quality, effective treatments for skin conditions. So, whichever you choose, there is a good chance that you’ll see a significant improvement in your symptoms.

tgel vs tsal text overlay on woman in shower with back turned lathering shampoo in her hair

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