Farrell makes what he calls “hair systems.” They’re not quite wigs or toupees—you can keep them on for weeks at a time. They cost more than a thousand dollars. Farrell was in New York for a week, holding meetings with clients in his hotel room. Now his rolling suitcases were packed. Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa, Russia: he’s almost always on the road, satiating international demand for high-end hair pieces.
There’s no cure for baldness, but there are ways to hold on to what you've got. The six dermatologists and the clinical studies point to three methods: minoxidil, laser treatments, and prescription finasteride. The key is finding the combination and hair loss regimen that works for you. A doctor is your best bet for that kind of guidance — but we found a few trustworthy products that will work for most people.
All that said, our primary consideration for choosing hair loss shampoos for our list was whether it produced actual results. We also acknowledge that what might work for someone may not work for another, but we’re interested in the overall picture. Perhaps not surprisingly, the “big names” in the hair loss game – Lipogaine, Nizoral, etc. – made the grade, in part, because they’ve accumulated years of successful results.
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I started combining two of them right away – because they both had different ingredients that I really wanted. I combine the Hair Surge for the caffeine, ketoconazole, and saw palmetto, along with the Regenepure DR for the Emu oil. I use a bit of both every day – and though I haven’t noticed a lot of hair coming back in – I HAVE noticed that a whole lot less is falling out. I used to see lots of hair in the tub or in my hand after drying. Hopefully some baby hairs will start so show themselves soon.

That said, there are products that don’t have FDA approval or clearance, but may help prevent hair loss. For example, shampoos with ketoconazole, a chemical with anti-DHT properties, is widely used to treat fungal infections but has become popular among consumers as a hair loss treatment. It makes sense — research shows that ketoconazole actually has beneficial effects on hair growth (especially for those with seborrheic dermatitis).
The main type of hair loss in women is the same as it is men. It's called androgenetic alopecia, or female (or male) pattern hair loss. In men, hair loss usually begins above the temples, and the receding hairline eventually forms a characteristic "M" shape; hair at the top of the head also thins, often progressing to baldness. In women, androgenetic alopecia begins with gradual thinning at the part line, followed by increasing diffuse hair loss radiating from the top of the head. A woman's hairline rarely recedes, and women rarely become bald.
The Holy Grail remains a drug that will promote regrowth, but this might not be so far away. Earlier this year, Manchester University announced that an osteoporosis drug had been found to have “dramatic results” promoting hair growth when applied to tissue samples in pre-clinical trials. The resultant frenzy left the PhD student responsible, Dr Nathan Hawkshaw, a little dazed. “Every other week, something comes out about hair loss and it doesn’t generate as much media coverage as what I experienced,” he grumbles. He’s in this for the science – there aren’t many fields where you get to mess around with real human tissue – but such is the distress caused by hair loss and such is the potential customer base that interest is always high.
One of the downsides to the product is that you pay hand over foot for all those special ingredients DS packed into this bottle. It’s not the cheap crap that most manufacturers throw into your standard shampoos. It is expensive stuff, and using it daily means there’s no real way of making it last a long time either. The bottom line is you have to bite the bullet but with all the ingredients in this bottle, you’re getting your money’s worth. 

A company not previously discussed in online news, SWITCH BIOTECH, has sights on developing a drug for androgenic alopecia. As you will see, the company is still in the very early stages of developing a therapy for AGA, however they are a knowledgeable dermatology-focused company and have a unique method of drug development. Here’s a quote from their website about working on AGA:
The cause of female-pattern hair loss is unknown, but doctors said there is a strong genetic component. The risk can come from male or female relatives. Though it looks as if the hair is falling out, that's not really what's happening. Cotsarelis said hair follicles are becoming smaller and producing hairs that may be so small that you can't see them.  Women tend to retain more normal, thick hairs than balding men do.

3. Scalp tonic. Serums with peptides or procyanidins (a class of antioxidants) such as niacinamide can help support overall scalp health and reduce inflammation, which is a major component of hair loss, says New York City dermatologist Doris Day. Try René Furterer Triphasic Progressive Concentrated Serum ($82), Julien Farel Magnifique Delay the Gray Hair & Scalp Serum ($135), or Day’s own Rapid Regrowth Serum ($55) once daily before massaging a minoxidil product into the scalp (there’s no need to wait for it to dry in between). “In addition to being anti-inflammatory,” Day says, “scalp tonics help minoxidil penetrate the scalp better and can minimize potential irritation from it.”
“There’s the ‘I don’t date bald men’ line – hard to argue with, but still an injury to one’s pride.” Then there are a surprising number of people who call out “baldie!” in the street, or equate a shaved head with homosexuality and/or neo-Nazism. “I’ve had baldist/homophobic abuse in the street a couple of times and I’ve even been asked on the Tube: ‘Are you BNP, mate?’ When I expressed bewilderment at this, I was told: ‘It’s the hair, innit.’”

Aclaris Therapeutics, the company who acquired the rights from Angela Christiano to use JAK inhibitors in alopecia disorders, is currently involved in a wide range of alopecia trials. The company has multiple ongoing trials for alopecia areata, including a trial for eyebrow regrowth, and also a new trial planned for AGA or androgenic alopecia. Full article here.
A clinician diagnoses female pattern hair loss by taking a medical history and examining the scalp. She or he will observe the pattern of hair loss, check for signs of inflammation or infection, and possibly order blood tests to investigate other possible causes of hair loss, including hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, and iron deficiency. Unless there are signs of excess androgen activity (such as menstrual irregularities, acne, and unwanted hair growth), a hormonal evaluation is usually unnecessary.
JW Pharma, a Korean biotech company that specializes in the Wnt pathway, has entered a cooperative agreement with the University of Pennsylvania to development a compound called CWL08006 for hair regeneration purposes. JW Pharma has a pool of Wnt targeting therapies, and apparently CWL08006 makes a great candidate for hair growth. Of course, Dr. George Cotsarelis of UPenn is involved, and the two teams plan to begin preclinical testing by 2019 (I’m a little surprised at that timeline for preclinical). One of the more interesting facets of the report, JW intends “to accelerate its commercialization by launching tests on the human body for cosmetics that utilizes the drug’s mechanism, next year.” If the candidate works well in the cosmetic tests, a version of it could be made available much sooner than the clinical drug pathway, but for now it’s not possible to speculate a time frame for that yet. Good news all in all. 
Trichotillomania may be difficult to diagnose if the patient is not forthcoming about pulling at his or her hair. Patients typically present with frontoparietal patches of alopecia that progress posteriorly and may include the eyelashes and eyebrows. Bare patches are typical, and the hair may appear uneven, with twisted or broken off hairs. Trichotillomania may lead to problems with self-esteem and social avoidance. Complications include infection, skin damage, and permanent scarring.18 

Certain foods have also been found to aggravate or worsen hair fall, such as sugar, which triggers the overproduction of the male hormone, androgen, which in turn causes the hair follicles to shrink in size and for hair to fall out or stop growing. Fish products that are known to contain high levels of mercury like tuna, mackerel and swordfish can also cause hair weakening and excessive hair fall. Studies have also found that fried foods are associated with the production of high levels of DHT.
Would there be any harm/benefit in combining the use of two hair-loss prevention shampoos, to take advantage of different ingredients and functions? Mainly Nizoral, at the twice a week recommendation, plus the Argan Oil Shampoo twice a week? I have somewhat oily hair and do get dandruff from time to time, but I do feel after washing my hair, it can feel dry and stiff. Just wondering if a combination of the two (one for dandruff, and one for healthy, thicker hair) might prove effective. Also, would you have any recommendations on a combo? Thanks!
The other main hair-loss treatment that was recommended by all four dermatologists I interviewed is finasteride, often called by its brand name Propecia. This FDA-approved medication is only available with a prescription, but these days, it’s found as a generic and ordered online after a virtual consultation, through start-ups like Hims, Keeps, and Lemonaid.
"The majority of men lose their hair not through stress, or bad diet, or lack of sleep, but through the genetic trait of male pattern baldness which is hard to treat through shampoos or supplements alone. Women lose their hair for very different reasons, but the argument still stands that a lot of the hair loss products on the market are just offering false hope. That said, there are a few that really work."

Hey Frederique, I removed it because it was no longer available for some reason. I’m not sure how well can these shampoos work if you are going through chemo. How you consulted your doctor about it? Ask if minoxidil is safe for your situation. It may be the best solution for your case since your cause for hair loss is not due to DHT. But please don’t take my word for it, consult with a doctor first.
Hi Ive always had thin hair but about 15months ago I had baby and started to notice my hair was falling out now I’m looking for a solution because my hair is really thin now mostly on my right side and in the back I’ve never thought about how as having to find the right shampoo so I’m like by no means knowledgeable on this so do I just buy these and use them and see if it works for me or what other I’m sorry if im not making sense like where do I start
RepliCel is a form of cell therapy that has a lot of folks excited. This is also known as RCH-01 and RepliCel is collaborating with global cosmetic company Shiseido. RepliCel will be an injectable like Histogen or Botox for example. It is basically hair transplants on steroids, but they are migrating cells instead of hairs. Their goal is to take a seed biopsy then multiply it in the lab for about 3 months. After replication, they inject it back into the scalp where it is needed. RepliCel has completed a phase 1 clinical trial and will enroll 160 male participants with mild to moderate hair loss for their Phase 2 trial. In other news RepliCel announced a research collaboration with University of British Columbia. They goal is to create a map with protein and gene expression of hair follicle cells to help RepliCel further improve their cell therapies i.e. hair loss prevention products.
“The DHT hormone (dihydrotestosterone) can contribute to thinning in women who are genetically predisposed to female pattern thinning,” Fusco says. For those whose case falls into this category, she advises a prescription shampoo with ketoconazole 2 percent, as it has anti-androgenic properties. “Ketoconazole has been proposed to disrupt the pathway of DHT leading to thinning of follicles.”
At first the researchers conducted studies using cyclosporine A, an immunosuppressant. One of its side effects is hair growth. That set of testing led them to the SFRP1 protein and the discovery that the protein blocks hair growth. But cyclosporine A has too many side effects to pursue further testing, which is why they set their sights on the osteoporosis drug.
Quietly, however, progress churns. Joseph is the pseudonymous proprietor of the Web site Follicle Thought, a popular destination for hair-loss obsessives. Follicle Thought is dedicated to “what’s next,” Joseph told me. “What could be coming? Obviously we have other things to cure. But, like, what is the world doing about hair? Hundreds of millions of people really want it. It’s a really deep, emotional, psychological issue for people.” He paused. “I’ve put so much thought into that question.”
Coconut milk / coconut oil. Coconut milk/oil, like aloe vera, is one of the oldest and most common natural ingredients for promoting hair growth and growing healthy, shiny hair. Coconut is rich in protein, iron and other minerals that promote healthy hair and prevent breakage. Apply the coconut milk/oil on your bald spots or all over the scalp, and leave it on overnight. Rinse the next day with cool water. You can do this every time you wash your hair.
Hair concealers and hair fibers. These are one of the newest cosmetic answers to hair loss. As the name suggests, these products are applied on the scalp or hair to camouflage hair loss and give the appearance of fullness to thinning hair. Some of these are applied directly on the scalp, while others (hair fibers) are attached to the hair, much like hair extensions, to add volume.

The answer, to be brutally honest, is no. Combine that with the fact that many shampoo manufacturers are hungry for a quick buck and make false claims about ingredients that haven’t been proven to work, and you have a market that can be treacherous to navigate. There are even fake reviews – which is a whole additional layer of deceit when you think about it.
And just like that, more fascinating hair-related research was published in PLOS Biology. A team of researchers lead by Dr. Nathan Hawkshaw of the University of Manchester have identified the drug ‘WAY-316606’ as a potential candidate for hair regrowth. WAY-316606 is an existing drug used to treat osteoporosis. It’s not clear at this time whether WAY-316606 is approved and on the market, or if it was partially developed to treat the bone disease.

But, there’s an even more important step to take – your participation and contribution. The topic of “a cure for hair loss” or “a hair growth treatment”, for many of us, is one of the most important issues in our lives. What are you doing to support its success? I realize that question may not have previously crossed the mind for many. It’s here now. For a personal example, I’m not a scientist who creates molecules in a lab, so I decided I would organize the hair growth treatment news and spread awareness. It’s been a gratifying practice for me. 
There are pharmaceutical solutions, too. Finasteride (often referred to by its brand name, Propecia) and Minoxidil (aka Regaine/Rogaine) are both available via online prescription in the UK. They stop hair falling out as opposed to making it grow back again, though some report more lustrous locks after three months or so. Donald Trump is the world’s most famous Propecia user. “Never go bald,” he once counselled. “The worst thing a man can do is go bald.” He’s not wrong. The anti-bald dating prejudice that David lamented extends to politics. Only five US presidents have ever been bald. As laughable as Trump’s follicular arrangements are, chances are that if nature had taken its course, a bald Trump wouldn’t have got to the White House. Careful what you wish for.
3. Nutriceuticals. Rogers recommends that her patients try Viviscal Dietary Supplements ($50 for a one-month supply) or Nutrafol ($88 for a one-month supply), both of which can often be picked up in a salon. The former contains marine-based proteins meant to beef up thinning hair. The latter is packed with antioxidants, like ashwagandha and curcumin, and boasts impressive clinical results.
There have also been studies on the effects of 1% pyrithione zinc shampoo and a 5% minoxidil solution. In one study, 200 men between the ages of 18 to 49 who experienced baldness between type III and type IV on the Norwood scale were given this treatment for a six-month period. They found that minoxidil, when used on its own, was approximately twice as powerful as pyrithione zinc at stimulating hair growth, but that both products were successful at increasing the amount of visible hair when used over a 26-week period.

The best fix by far for replacing lost hair is a transplant. Back in the day, docs used plugs that resembled cornrows (definitely not natural looking). Today, guys have more options. You can go for “the strip method” where a doctor surgically removes a strip of hair from the back of your head, dissects every hair graft under a microscope, and then plants the individual grafts onto hair-thin areas of your scalp with tiny incisions.
Men’s Rogaine Extra Strength Solution is the liquid version of our top pick. It didn’t make our final cut because it includes propylene glycol, which causes irritation in roughly one-third of its users. With that said, Dr. Wolfeld finds that it can be even more effective in practical daily use. In his experience, “the solution can penetrate and get into your scalp a little bit better” than the foam — especially if you’re not taking the time and effort to apply the foam correctly. This seems crazy to us since the foam so quickly dissolved into a liquid in our tests, but if you’re worried, try a one-month supply of the liquid and make the switch to foam if you notice any irritation.

Head over to the main Articles page to read an update from head researcher Junji Fukuda PhD of Yokohama National University. This is the research that spurred the “french fry hair cure” craze of recent news headlines. I asked Junji in a Q&A if he has received any interest from bigger companies to commercialize his technology. Find his answer and more insight to what lead him to hair follicle research in the full article.
A company not previously discussed in online news, SWITCH BIOTECH, has sights on developing a drug for androgenic alopecia. As you will see, the company is still in the very early stages of developing a therapy for AGA, however they are a knowledgeable dermatology-focused company and have a unique method of drug development. Here’s a quote from their website about working on AGA:
"Despite some of the claims, a shampoo or conditioner won’t be able to stop or slow hair loss, nor help with a receding hairline or thicken hair that’s becoming thinner," says trichologist Anabel Kingsley from The Philip Kingsley Trichology Clinic in London. "At best, a thickening shampoo will make hair temporarily thicker for a short period of time, but they certainly won’t help with hair loss or thinning."
What's to know about alopecia areata? Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disorder that usually results in unpredictable, patchy hair loss. Approximately 7 million people in the U.S. have alopecia areata, and it can affect anyone of any age or gender. There is no cure for alopecia areata although some treatments are available to help hair regrow more quickly. Read now 

Hair transplants will likely lead to better results in the long run (you are introducing new hairs to the balding areas), but you’ll still need to use minoxidil or finasteride after surgery to maintain the results. Like all hair loss treatments, hair transplants are best when combined with other methods, and you’ll want to speak with your doctor to see what combination is best for you.
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