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Significance: Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) combined with diffuse correlation spectroscopy (DCS) provides a noninvasive approach for monitoring cerebral blood flow (CBF), oxygenation, and oxygen metabolism. However, these methods are vulnerable to signal contamination from the scalp. Our work evaluated methods of reducing the impact of this contamination using time-resolved (TR) NIRS and multidistance (MD) DCS. Aim: The magnitude of scalp contamination was evaluated by measuring the flow, oxygenation, and metabolic responses to a global hemodynamic challenge. Contamination was assessed by collecting data with and without impeding scalp blood flow. Approach: Experiments involved healthy participants. A pneumatic tourniquet was used to cause scalp ischemia, as confirmed by contrast-enhanced NIRS, and a computerized gas system to generate a hypercapnic challenge. Results: Comparing responses acquired with and without the tourniquet demonstrated that the TR-NIRS technique could reduce scalp contributions in hemodynamic signals up to 4 times (rSD ¼ 3 cm) and 6 times (rSD ¼ 4 cm). Similarly, blood flow responses from the scalp and brain could be separated by analyzing MD DCS data with a multilayer model. Using these techniques, there was no change in metabolism during hypercapnia, as expected, despite large increases in CBF and oxygenation. Conclusion: NIRS/DCS can accurately monitor CBF and metabolism with the appropriate enhancement to depth sensitivity, highlighting the potential of these techniques for neuromonitoring.