Evidence Basedcheckmark

Minoxidil (Rogaine)

Minoxidil is an over the counter topical hair loss treatment for both scalp and eyebrow hair loss.

Minoxidil

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The Skinny


Average Recovery

0 days

Permanence

Temporary

Application

Topical

Surgical

No

Cost

$30 - $60

The Specifics


What is minoxidil?

Minoxidil (a.k.a. Rogaine) is an over-the-counter topical hair loss solution approved by the United States Food & Drug Administration (FDA) for male pattern baldness and female pattern baldness on the scalp. It is also commonly used to treat hair loss in the eyebrow area, although this an off-label, non-FDA approved use. Minoxidil-5 is not effective for more severe hair loss and will not change the appearance of the hairline or cause completely new hair growth.

Anatomy of the Hair Follicle

Hair Follicle Anatomy Illustration

Rogaine needs to be started in the early stages of hair loss and thinning hair to be effective. It is important to use women's rogaine or the men's hair regrowth treatment depending on your gender. Numerous clinical studies have supported the efficacy of over-the-counter minoxidil (Rogaine) hair growth treatment to treat hair loss and create fuller hair.

What cosmetic concerns does minoxidil treat?

  1. Hair Loss: The Rogaine formula has the active ingredient minoxidil-5 with inactive ingredients like botanical extracts. This increases the health of hair follicles to regrow fuller hair and increases the diameter of hair improving the length of hair growth for fuller hair.
  2. Eyebrow & Eyelash Hair: While it is not and FDA-approved usage, some find topical minoxidil products effectively restore eyebrow hair.

Who is the ideal candidate for minoxidil?

The ideal candidate for minoxidil use is in the early stages of hair thinning or hair loss (usually under 40 years of age) with hereditary hair loss affecting the top of the scalp. minoxidil is not recommended for individuals under 18, women who are breast feeding those with no family history of hair loss, those with spontaneous patchy hair loss, or those with hair loss related to other conditions like alopecia areata or thyroid disease.

What is the average recovery associated with minoxidil?

There is no recovery time associated with minoxidil use. Candidates must allow the product to dry completely and refrain from washing their hair for four hours after application.

What are the potential side effects of minoxidil?

Possible side effects of minoxidil use include allergic reaction, scalp irritation, weight gain, chest pain, or development of irritant contact dermatitis. If accidentally ingested, seek immediate medical help or call the poison control center.

What can someone expect from the results of minoxidil?

The results of minoxidil will develop gradually over about six months of regular and consistent use. To maintain results, candidates will need to continue the therapy indefinitely.

What is the average cost of minoxidil?

The average cost of minoxidil is $30 to $60, but may be dependent on insurance. The actual cost of the minoxidil will vary by location, healthcare provider, and individual candidate needs.

Pros

increased hair weightincreased hair diameterincreased hair thickness

Cons

limited increase in hair countmust use indefinitelylong time to see resultsvaried results

Invasiveness Score

mildmoderatesevere
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10

Invasiveness is graded based on factors such as anesthesia practices, incisions, and recovery notes common to this procedure.

What to Expect


Minoxidil, also known as Rogaine, is a topical product used to treat hair loss in both men and women. Here is a quick guide for what to expect before, during, and after hair loss treatment with Minoxidil.

The Takeaway


Minoxidil, or Rogaine, is an over the counter hair loss solution for hair regrowth and improved hair follicle health. This topical solution is best for hair thinning, hair density, and thicker hair. Minoxidil will not alter the appearance of the hairline.

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Source List

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  1. American Academy of Dermatology Association Hair Loss: Tips for Managing aad.org
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