There are a lot of remedies for hair loss out there, but Rogaine is by far the most famous. And there’s are legit reasons for that. For one thing, out of all the hair loss treatments available over the counter in the United States, it’s the only one approved for both men and women. But availability isn’t the only reason Rogaine has been and remains one of the most popular treatments for hair loss. Read on to learn more.
Does Rogaine work?
The primary active ingredient in Rogaine is 5% minoxidil (commonly nicknamed “minox”). Orally, minoxidil is a medication to treat high blood pressure. Topically, it works a lot different. When applied to the scalp, minoxidil in the form of Rogaine foam or Rogaine topical treatment takes affect as soon as you start using it—as long as you use it regularly.
One of the reasons men become bald is shrinkage of hair follicles over large portions of their scalp, leading to male pattern baldness. By age 50, 50% of men exhibit some degree of male pattern baldness, because it gets more common with age. When the follicles shrink, they eventually stop producing hair altogether and go into a permanent dormant phase, which is different from the regular “resting” phase of a healthy hair growth cycle. In this dormant phase, the hair will never grow back as long as the follicle remains shriveled and dormant—it just can’t produce hair in that state.
How Does Rogaine Work?
Rogaine works by fortifying and reinvigorating those shrunken, dormant follicles that are typical with male pattern baldness. When the follicles “wake up” and become healthy again, they start regrowing hair—because that’s the thing: On its own, male pattern baldness is a permanent condition, due dormant state of your hair follicles; the only proven treatment is to actively fight back by repairing and awakening follicles.
So, does Rogaine work? The simple answer is yes. Famously, the Rogaine study has shown that 9/10 men regrew hair in 4 months. (You’ve probably heard it cited in a Rogaine ad or even in general pop culture.) The longer answer it works because it tackles what would otherwise be permanent hair loss by restoring hair follicles to their normal healthy and active state.
It should be noted that Rogaine works best when you start treatment early in your hair loss. Not only does it mean you’ll see results quicker, your follicles will be more likely to fully recover from their semi-permanent slumber, which means you’re more likely to achieve the ultimate results—hair that looks as good or better than it did before your hair loss began.
Rogaine before and after
Notice how this gent began his treatment during the early phase of male pattern baldness hair loss, while he still had hair on top, albeit thinning. The results of treating the issue early speak for themselves in the after shot.
This dude’s hair was a little thinner on top than the previous guy—he just styled it differently to cover it up. But once again, he started treatment early enough in his hair loss that his follicles recovered nicely, and he saw legit regrowth.
This man’s hair loss is the most advanced of the group. Notice how not only is his hair markedly thin on top, his temples are very receded. Despite this, he experienced very significant natural hair regrowth—more so than the other two fellows, which proves there’s still hope even if you’ve been dodging the issue awhile.
Rogaine side effects
The most common side effect you’re likely to see with Rogaine will occur in the first two weeks; it’s annoying and may be alarming—but it’s a good sign in the long run. What happens when your follicles wake up and rejuvenate is that they will push out any old hair as part of the natural hair cycle, which may mean you see more hair loss at first. However, this is a necessary evil so that new hair can grow in.
It may also cause your beard to thicken, but as long as having a beard or shaving a beard isn’t too big of a deal for you, this issue is minor.
Flakiness and itching can occur. If this issue is minor, it may just go away on its own once your scalp adjusts, but always report any worrying side effects to your doctor to be sure it’s all copacetic.
Where to buy Rogaine?
One of the easiest and most convenient places to buy Rogaine is online. You can find both the topical solution as well as the foam version there. The latter of which is particularly popular since it’s easier on sensitive skin.