Treats: Hair Thinning (also known as Female Pattern Hair Loss, Male Pattern Hair Loss, Menopausal Hair Thinning, Reduced Hair Volume, Androgenic Alopecia)
What is Minoxidil?
Minoxidil (the active ingredient in Regaine / Rogaine) was originally used to treat hypertension — but it was also found to encourage hair growth on the face, body and scalp. Minoxidil is applied topically to your scalp as a lotion or foam.
Minoxidil may be recommended for use by both women and men.
What Does Minoxidil Do?
Minoxidil is a vasodilator, which means that it dilates (widens) your blood capillaries at the site of application. When you apply it to your scalp, it increases the blood flow to your hair follicles, helping to stimulate hair growth.
However, minoxidil does not tackle the main cause of hair thinning: a genetic sensitivity in your hair follicles to a male hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). This is why, at Philip Kingsley, our Trichologists do not prescribe minoxidil on its own to combat hair thinning. We find that it is most successful when used in combination with a topical anti-androgen to block the effects of DHT on your follicles.
Dosage of Minoxidil
Minoxidil is available over the counter in pharmacies. It is applied once daily to the scalp in the form of a lotion or foam, usually as a 5% solution.
First results should be seen after 4 months, due to the timing of the hair growth cycle. Initial regrowth is likely to be fine in texture, but any new hairs should eventually grow to match the appearance of the rest of your strands.
At the Philip Kingsley Clinics, we offer a variety of bespoke, prescription-only drops containing both minoxidil and anti-androgens. To find out more, please contact our dedicated reception teams in London and New York.
Side Effects of Minoxidil
Possible side effects include (but are not limited to): redness, irritation or itching at the site of application; unwanted hair growth on the face or body.