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Today, the problem of thinning hair in females is found to be very common in women of the working-age group. Most women spend a lot of money on products (i.e. shampoo, topical solution, and vitamin supplement) they believe are the best remedy for their hair loss and hair growth. They only come to find out that none of them works as claimed. The fact is that the hair loss problem is not taken care of at the root cause.

There are several factors that are responsible for female hair loss. To name a few, heredity, stress, busy lifestyle, imbalanced hormones (hormonal hair loss), hair dyeing, and even just being on the computer and other electronic gadgets for a long period of time. 

Among these factors, genetics is the most fundamental cause for 90% of hair loss in both women and men. Let’s explore what kinds of medication are being used to treat women's hair loss.


(Generic name: Minoxidil topical solution)

Minoxidil topical solution (Brand name: Rogaine), liquid spray or aerosol foam, is the only medication approved by FDA for both men’s and women’s hair losses; it is more effective in women than in men, though.

Rogaine is the only medication most recommended for women with genetic hair loss. The medication is safe to use since it is poorly absorbed through skin. 

Rogaine liquid comes in 2 different concentrations:

Rogaine aerosol comes in 2 different types:

 Does Rogaine actually work ?

Rogaine is effective to be used on the top of the head and crown region where thinning hair is present but not completely bald. 

When used properly, it can reduce hair loss by 60%.


Is Rogaine liquid or foam better ?

Propylene glycol is the common solvent used in Rogaine liquid. It may cause scalp irritation and may also make your hair become sticky and greasy due to its high viscosity, making your hair harder to manage. This is the main reason the liquid version is less preferred.

On the other hand, glycerin and alcohol are used as the common solvent in Rogaine foam. 

It does not cause scalp irritation or make your hair become sticky and greasy like Rogaine liquid does. 

More people seem to prefer Rogaine foam to Rogaine liquid even though they both cost about the same and the efficacies are identical.


Which is better, Rogaine or generic Minoxidil ?

Rogaine’s patent has long expired, and today there are many generic Minoxidil on the market to choose from. 

Whether it be Kirkland Minoxidil by Costco, or Equate Minoxidil by Walmart, the efficacies are similar to Rogaine but cheaper in price.

 Generic 5% Minoxidil solution


 Can women use men's Rogaine ?

Men’s ROGAINE 5% Minoxidil solution is sometimes recommended to women with hair loss because it is more effective than the women’s ROGAINE 2% Minoxidil solution. 

But the only caveat is the higher the strength, the more side effects are associated.


 Does Minoxidil regrow hairline ?

Minoxidil is not effective to be used for frontal hair loss or an M-shaped hair receding. 

It works on the top and crown area in which the scalp is not completely bald.


How long before one see hair regrowth with Minoxidil ?

Minoxidil starts working as soon as you start using it but you may not see the result until 6-12 months later. 

Once you start seeing the noticeable result, you need to continue using it indefinitely. Discontinuing using it will result in the return of the hair loss.


Minoxidil's mechanism of action

It is believed that Minoxidil lengthens the anagen phase and shortens the telogen phase of the hair growth cycle. 

As a result, hair stays in place longer with less shedding. Each application of Minoxidil stays active in your system for as long as 7-12 hours before it is excreted in the urine.

Side effects and disadventages

How to use Minoxidil correctly

Apply 1 ml of Minoxidil twice daily, in the morning and before bedtime, onto the thinning area on the scalp. 

For best results and absorption, make sure that the solution comes in contact with the skin on the scalp. The aerosol type may not work as well as the liquid one because most of the foam tends to stay on the hair rather than on the scalp.

Alternative female 

hair loss medications

SPIRONOLACTONE Before, it was used as a diuretic medication. To date, it is also used to treat women’s genetic hair loss, due to its anti androgen property. 

Androgen is a male hormone that is also found in women. It is believed that women who have genetic hair loss are more sensitive to this male hormone than other women. Androgen is implicated to cause hair follicles to wither away. 

SPIRONOLACTONE works as a blocker to androgen receptors; it stops or delays hair from falling out. 

Some of its side effects include breast tenderness, irregular menstruation, and electrolyte imbalance (e.g., sodium deficiency or high potassium).

BIRTH CONTROL PILLS Birth control pills such as ESTRADIOL, DROSPIRENONE, and ACETATE (DIANE 35) can be used to treat female hair loss since they contain some active ingredients that are anti androgens, which help prevent hair from falling out.

TOPICAL ESTRONE CREAM Studies have shown that applying ESTRONE cream on the scalp can stimulate hair follicles to enter the anagen phase 60-65% more, resulting in less hair loss.

Women normally shed 50-100 hairs a day. But if you are one of the women who lose more hair than normal and your hair gets thinner and thinner every day, it is time to see a doctor. 

There are many factors that cause hair to fall out, getting the right treatment is the key to bring back the hair you love.

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