Other medical conditions — most commonly telogen effluvium and seborrheic dermatitis — can also cause hair loss, but most people can trace their follicular woes back to androgenetic alopecia, so we focused our search there. We started with more than 200 products, including all-natural solutions and high-tech gadgets, while skipping treatments that focus only on volumizing or thickening hair. We also limited our scope to the scalp, and left out specialty products designed only for eyebrows or beards.
Unlike The Big 3 Shampoo from Lipogaine, The Big 5 does not contain ketoconazole or copper peptides. However, it does have everything else The Big 3 has + 17 natural hair stimulating ingredients. We view this shampoo as more of a natural thickening shampoo whereas The Big 3 is going to be a little harsher on the scalp but better at nuking scalp DHT. Both shampoos are excellent products from trusted brand Lipogaine. We do know of some users that had had success rotating the Lipogaine shampoos and use The Big 3 every 3rd day or so and incorporate The Big 5 into their daily routine.
Chemotherapy is also one of the primary causes of balding among cancer patients, men and women alike. While not all chemotherapy treatments result in hair loss, some that involves the use of drugs like Altretamine, Carboplatin, Docetaxel, and Idarubicin can cause hair thinning and hair fall. In such cases, the hair loss varies from person to person and the dosage of drugs administered. Hair fall doesn't occur at once, but rather after several weeks of treatment until hair fall rate increases after one or two months of exposure to chemotherapy. Radiation therapy as part of cancer treatment can also result into hair loss but typically only in areas where the radiation is targeted.
Lee Buckler, CEO of Replicel, stated in an interview this week that he expects Shiseido to release clinical trial results in 2018. This is great news that everything is still on track for the anticipated 2018 release of Replicel’s RCH-01 technology in Japan. Lee mentioned “It’s entirely up to Shiseido what they do in regards to this product. There’s certainly a possibility that they could decide if the data is positive, to launch the product in Japan…”. Yes, it seems likely that if the data is positive, Shiseido would go to market with one of the biggest technological breakthroughs of the century. Full interview here. 
Away from Silicon Valley, though, a clutch of companies are competing to provide the true cure. There are a few primary approaches. The San Diego company Histogen has been around since 2007, making it a veteran in this inchoate field. Histogen is working toward “an injectable for hair growth,” its founder, Dr. Gail Naughton, told me. What Histogen wants to inject in you are extracts from “neonatal cells grown under simulated embryonic conditions.” Histogen is convinced that these cells stimulate “growth factors” that signal hair formation. That’s option No. 1: first, a cell solution is whipped into a hair-growing frenzy, in a lab; then it’s punched into your head. “Some people would rather take a pill,” Naughton acknowledged. “But we have some nice benchmarks, with something like Botox. You’ll be able to have a physician come to a Tupperware party” and give the injections. The market, Naughton knows, will be huge. “It’s not just hair,” she said. “Anything in aesthetics has been booming worldwide. Anything to be more youthful-looking, anything to regenerate yourself. Anything to live longer.”
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.
NFL Hall of Fame player Deion Sanders has recently undergone a hair transplant. He has not been shy about discussing it publicly and over the last several weeks has actually continued to put out a slew of hilarious and outrageous posts pertaining to his renewed follicles. For his first announcement to social media, he posted this jubilant and priceless video to his Instagram:
Late last week, HairClone officially unveiled its crowdfunding campaign with the Euro-based crowdfunding company Capital Cell. HairClone is offering equity based crowdfunding, which means anyone who makes an investment (£500 minimum) owns equity in the HairClone company. Full details on the campaign are listed in the latest HairClone article on the main page of Follicle Thought.
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.

“Curis (now-dormant company) had performed a lot of studies on targeting the Hedgehog pathway for hair growth with very promising results, however, their compounds caused orthosteric activation of the pathway (turning it on everywhere and robustly which is not safe) vs. Oxy133 which causes a much more regulated and limited allosteric activation of the pathway only in stem cells. This could make Oxy133 a blockbuster. Let’s see what happens.”  

I recently published an article covering a story in the press of SkinTE helping to possibly save the life of a burn patient (see Articles). In that post I shared an image from SkinTE’s website which shows an application for hair growth. What some may not be aware of is the fact that Dr. Denver Lough, CEO of PolarityTE, has done some legitimate hair follicle research while at Johns Hopkins University. Whether or not this will increase the chances of a “HairTE” product to become a success, we can’t say. However, it may be of interest to recall two peer reviewed articles that Lough and colleagues published involving the proteins LGR5+ and LGR6+ stem cells and hair growth.
Hair loss in alopecia areata occurs in three different patterns: patchy alopecia is circumscribed, oval-shaped, flesh-colored patches on any part of the body; alopecia totalis involves the entire scalp; and alopecia universalis involves the whole body. Evaluation of the scalp may reveal short vellus hairs, yellow or black dots, and broken hair shafts (which are not specific to alopecia areata). Microscopic examination of the hair follicles demonstrates exclamation mark hair (i.e., hairs that are narrower closer to the scalp and mimic an exclamation point; Figure 44). Nail pitting is also associated with alopecia areata.

In the operating room, Bernstein prepped the robot patient for implantation, puncturing the man’s scalp with a long needle. These are the “sites” where the hairs will go. Blood bubbled over his scalp, but the patient didn’t seem to notice. The patient and doctor chatted loosely about summer houses and beers and boats. “Would I be a candidate for a surgery after this surgery?” he asked.
After the new article featuring Medipost’s hair growth cosmetic was published, Jay Lee PhD of Medipost, began chiming in on the comments section. He first shared that Medipost is currently engaging in a larger clinical trial for the CM3 product which would include higher scale Norwood’s. Then, in a following comment he revealed that Medipost is developing a potentially more advanced hair growth product as well. Here are his words:
Of course, there are plenty of men who wish desperately to restore their youthful locks, and a few — we can think of one powerful one — who cling to elaborate comb-overs, but many balding men simply clip their hair short and go on with their lives. Dermatologists say hair loss is emotionally harder for women, who are often deeply embarrassed by thinning hair even though it's quite common. By the time they reach 50, about 40 percent of women are experiencing what's known as female-pattern hair loss, said Gopal Patel, a dermatologist with Aesthetic Dermatology Associates in Media. Women of African descent struggle with even more conditions that can damage hair follicles and cause bald spots.

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:

I noticed significant thinning, and hair all over the sink every morning, from breakage; I use a flat iron sometimes, and my hair is color-treated. I have since started using coconut oil to help manage my frizzy damaged naturally curly hair. It acts as a wonderful styling product, it lends shine and manageability, has also stopped the breakage, you just have to be very careful with the amount that you use. I also use castor oil and rosemary essential oil on my scalp at night and wash in the morning….egg is supposed to be useful for its proteins (must rinse after 20 min with cool water!!) And mayonnaise too, but I haven’t tried that. Best of luck, Friend….


In this section we discuss some of the future hair loss solutions that will be coming out in the coming years. There are a few hair loss cures coming in or around 2020, and hopefully there will be a mass market solution. It is no surprise that ‘hair loss cures 2020’ is an extremely popular search term in Google. You’d think by that time we’d figure out how to stop hairs from falling out of heads.
In Vancouver, a Canadian company called RepliCel focusses on the hair follicle’s “dermal-sheath cup cells,” its C.E.O., Lee Buckler, explained. Buckler believes that DHT attacks these cup cells “like a parasite.” Like Histogen, RepliCel’s consumer product would be an injectable. The company would generate new versions of your cup cells, which would be implanted into your “affected area”—the places where your hair has fallen out. Boom: new hairs. (Theoretically.)
“There are so many different groups going down different avenues to tackle this problem,” says Hawkshaw. “Some use stem cells, some use pharmacological drugs, as we did. There’s a lot of promise in these pre-clinical studies. But whether that extends to real life, we’re not sure yet.” While it is essentially a cosmetic issue, that doesn’t mean it’s trivial. “It causes severe psychological distress,” he says bluntly. “It makes a big difference to a person’s perspective of life.” While he’s pretty lustrous at 28, he does worry about losing his own hair. “It’s a human universal.” 

Anagen is the growth phase. This lasts for about 3 - 5 years, where you can observe your hair growing half an inch every month. Full-length hair from this phase is about 18 - 30 inches long. Studies show that this phase may also be affected by other factors. Asian hair, for example, has been found to have a longer anagen phase. Weather is also a factor; hair growth can be faster in summer than in winter.
To us, that meant any product with zero proven ingredients, case studies, or FDA clearance — which shrunk our list by a whopping 180 contenders. That’s right, there are only three treatments that have actually been cleared by the FDA and supported with clinical studies: finasteride (commonly marketed as Propecia), minoxidil, and laser treatments. And, since finasteride is prescription-only, it left us with two.

SOURCES: George Cotsarelis, MD, director, Hair and Scalp Clinic, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia. Andrew Kaufman, MD, assistant professor, department of dermatology, University of California, Los Angeles; medical director, Center for Dermatology Care, Thousand Oaks, Calif. Tom Barrows, PhD, director of product development, Aderans Research Institute Inc., Atlanta. Cotsarelis, G. and Millar, S.E. Trends in Molecular Medicine, July 2001; vol 7: pp 293-301. American Society for Dermatologic Surgery web site. American Academy of Facial and Reconstructive Plastic Surgery web site. American Hair Loss Council web site. Springer, K. American Family Physician, July 1, 2003; vol 68: pp 93-102. Hair Loss Help web site, "Interview with Dr. Ken Washenik from Bosley." Fuchs, E. Developmental Cell, July 2001: vol 1: pp 13-25.

Again, as we've mentioned at the start, these treatments and cures are dependent on the cause and type of hair loss. While massage oils and a hair spa treatment can work on hair loss in men caused by a skin or scalp infection, these may not work for cases of pattern baldness that are hereditary or caused by DHT associated with male hormones. Even medications like minodixil and finasteride cannot offer a permanent cure. In cases of permanent hair loss like pattern baldness, sometimes the best type of cure is simply management of your condition.
While the drug is generally safe for use, some possible side effects are mild irritation of the scalp, dryness and growth of hair on some parts of the body, especially the sides of the face and hands. In some cases, you might observe some increased hair loss around the first few days of use. If the hair fall continues after two weeks upon application of minoxidil, stop the treatment first and see a doctor.
While the drug is generally safe for use, some possible side effects are mild irritation of the scalp, dryness and growth of hair on some parts of the body, especially the sides of the face and hands. In some cases, you might observe some increased hair loss around the first few days of use. If the hair fall continues after two weeks upon application of minoxidil, stop the treatment first and see a doctor.
In fact, hair loss cures and treatments are a dime a dozen. There are cures that are designed for temporary hair loss conditions, and others more are available for permanent cases. It's also important to note that some of these cures are specific to the cause and the type of hair loss, and other treatments don't apply for other cases such as pattern balding. We've listed them all the same in order to give you a good idea of the breadth of choices available.
*all photos are models and not actual patients.If you are interested in a prescription product, Hims will assist in setting up a visit for you with an independent physician who will evaluate whether or not you are an appropriate candidate for the prescription product and if appropriate, may write you a prescription for the product which you can fill at the pharmacy of your choice.

Thyroid medication. Hair loss as a result of thyroid problems will only be solved by treating the root cause. This means that you need to take medications for hypothyroidism in order to address the hormonal imbalance in the body. The most common medication for thyroid problems is levothyroxine, a synthetic version of thyroxine (thyroid hormone). Since the medication is used to address the thyroid problem and hair loss indirectly, the medication has to be continued even when you've gotten better or your hormone level has gone back to normal in order to continue hair growth.


1. Hair color. Anytime you dye your hair, you’re increasing the diameter of each strand, which can help add volume when your hair is sparse and fine. As a general rule, ask your colorist to make sure highlights are finer at the top of the head, where hair is the thinnest, and more intense at the bottom, where it’s thickest, says Eva Scrivo, a hairstylist and the owner of the Eva Scrivo Salon in New York City. And beware: A color that contrasts with your scalp (blonde tones if your scalp is dark, deep brunettes if your scalp is light) will make any visible scalp more obvious.
This is a short-term cure, applied while waiting for hair to grow, and therefore recommended for those with a mild to medium case of hair loss. In addition to being non-invasive, hair concealers and hair fibers are instant and affordable. Like wigs and hairpieces, they are used to effectively cover up balding spots while not getting in the way of growing hair. Compared to wigs, however, they are more natural looking and blend well with your natural hair, therefore drawing less attention when you're out in public.
To us, that meant any product with zero proven ingredients, case studies, or FDA clearance — which shrunk our list by a whopping 180 contenders. That’s right, there are only three treatments that have actually been cleared by the FDA and supported with clinical studies: finasteride (commonly marketed as Propecia), minoxidil, and laser treatments. And, since finasteride is prescription-only, it left us with two.
Not surprisingly, treatments with 5 percent minoxidil work better than treatments with 2 percent minoxidil. A randomized clinical trial published in the American Journal of Clinical Dermatology in 2002 found that, in men with androgenetic alopecia, “5 percent topical minoxidil was clearly superior to 2 percent topical minoxidil and placebo in increasing hair growth.” The difference was actually pretty astounding — after 48 weeks, the men who used 5 percent minoxidil experienced 45 percent more hair growth than the men who used the 2 percent treatment.
While diet alone won’t save your hair, there may be some truth to the old adage that you are what you eat. “You’re not going to have the healthiest hair if you’re living off doughnuts, because being nutrient-deficient weakens strands and makes them more prone to breakage,” says Denise Kernan, owner of DK Hair Techs, Inc., a member of the International Society for Hair Restoration Surgery, and a hair transplant technician who has worked on everyone from senators to sports stars to actors to mafia guys (she won’t name names to protect the privacy of her clients).
Argan oil is loaded with A, C and E vitamins, all of which have been linked to hair growth. When you use argan oil externally as part of a hair loss shampoo, it can help to boost your scalp’s and skin’s cell production, thus causing healthier hair and skin. Argan oil is good for dry, brittle and thinning hair since it guards against you losing more follicles than you’re capable of growing (which makes hair loss noticeable).
While thinning generally worsens after menopause, doctors said hormone treatments typically do not improve hair growth. Minoxidil lotion or foam, which can be purchased over the counter, is the first line of treatment. About half of women who use it have not lost more hair a year later, Cotsarelis said. Spironolactone, a blood-pressure drug, can also help, doctors said. Some may also try finasteride — approved to treat baldness in men — off-label. The evidence that it works in women is weak, Patel said.
In fact, research posted in the Journal of Dermatology found that ketoconazole was effective in treating mice for dermatitis and hair loss. In clinical trials, researchers found that 15 men who used finasteride, minoxidil, and ketoconazole for a 90-day period benefitted from hair growth, getting a noticeably thicker head of hair than what they had at the beginning of the studies.
More good research coming from the University of Alabama at Birmingham shows that a certain gene affecting mitochondrial function can dramatically reverse signs of aging in mice. The aging factors which were shown to be reversible include skin wrinkles, gray hair, and hair loss. Next comes the important phase where the researchers continue forward to translate this discovery to human use. Full article on the front page.
While diet alone won’t save your hair, there may be some truth to the old adage that you are what you eat. “You’re not going to have the healthiest hair if you’re living off doughnuts, because being nutrient-deficient weakens strands and makes them more prone to breakage,” says Denise Kernan, owner of DK Hair Techs, Inc., a member of the International Society for Hair Restoration Surgery, and a hair transplant technician who has worked on everyone from senators to sports stars to actors to mafia guys (she won’t name names to protect the privacy of her clients).

MAX BioPharma, a company working with Hedgehog pathway therapeutics, wants to test its lead compound for hair growth in  mouse model. If data from this experiment turns out to be positive the company says it will reach out to cosmetic or larger pharma partners to commercialize the product. While we currently don’t know how this therapy will fare for hair growth, in the past we have seen impressive potential from stimulators of the Hedgehog pathway.
Lately I’ve been receiving a few inquiries from readers about Shiseido and Brotzu release dates. So, I’m going to address the situation here and hope that this will be sufficient until more news comes from direct sources. I estimate that these companies would publicly address the release date of their products by the end of Q3 this year (end of Sept). As consumers we know there’s no guarantees for releases and if one or both of these products reached the market this year it would be a very fortunate situation. So, keep an eye out, but loosen the grip a little. The news will come when it comes. When there is news it will be visible here.
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.”
Unfortunately, as with the aforementioned minoxidil, you’ll begin to lose your hair again if you ever stop taking Finasteride. Additionally, it may cause erectile dysfunction and other sexual problems in men although that’s uncommon. Men who experience these side effects from taking this pill can reverse them; however, that can take up to three months to occur.
Follicle Thought is interested in connecting with scientists and startups who are working on hair growth or hair loss prevention research. If you or a colleague is working on hair growth please get in touch on the Contact page, even if you are not ready to share news on the site yet. Follicle Thought can offer networking and other resources to benefit your development. Thanks
The Rogaine rep we spoke to explained that the different packaging (and therefore different prices) has to do with the FDA-approval process: “We discovered in clinical trials that the hair loss patterns between men and women are different,” she said by way of explanation. “Men typically have that bald spot on the crown of their head, where women generally have a general thinning throughout, but concentrated more on the top of the head. So for FDA approval, we had to come up with two different, gender-specific products, so the directions were more explanatory.”
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!
Two clinical trials have been ran as a proof of concept for Histogen. Terminal hair count and hair thickness noticeably increased after just 12 weeks. Due to this success, Histogen plans to conduct a Phase 1 Clinical Study in the United States. This will be an injectable which when injected into the scalp will stimulate dormant hair follicles and induce new hair follicle formation (think Botox but for hair follicles instead of skin cells). HSC660 is an ongoing female hair loss trial that will run for 22 weeks and a late stage (Phase 3 trial) for men has initiated in Mexico. Histogen founder Gail Naughton even went so far to reveal commercialization, “We’e in very late-stage negotiations with some huge retail partners,” she says. It may not be a magic bullet, but it would sure be nice to have an alternative/supplement to Rogaine that actually stimulates growth.

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.
"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."

BBC Newsbeat has released a documentary yesterday titled “Too Young To Go Bald.” The program gives a candid look into the lives of several young adults dealing with various forms of alopecia. Chidera Eggerue, a blogger dealing with traction alopecia, meets up with a female British rapper who previously underwent a hair transplant for her traction alopecia. Also in the documentary, vlogger Perry O’Bree who is dealing with androgenic alopecia shares about his own experiences.


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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.

According to the press release, a fast track designation is “intended to facilitate the development of new therapies for serious conditions and with the potential to address an unmet medical need. A company with an investigational medicine receiving Fast Track designation may be eligible for more frequent communications with the FDA and may receive an expedited review of the new drug application.”
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
Minoxidil: This medicine is applied to the scalp. It can stop hairs from getting thinner and stimulate hair growth on the top of the scalp. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved minoxidil to treat hair loss. It is the only hair re-growth product approved for men and women. A dermatologist may combine minoxidil with another treatment.
Hollywood has made movies about it. Industries have made billions from it. And if the volume of scripture is any indication, the Almighty God must have placed great value on his creation of the head of human hair. After all, He gave Samson—the strongest man of whom the Bible tells—his immense strength through his hair and declared a woman’s hair "a glory unto" her in the 11th chapter of 1 Chorinthians.
BBC Newsbeat has released a documentary yesterday titled “Too Young To Go Bald.” The program gives a candid look into the lives of several young adults dealing with various forms of alopecia. Chidera Eggerue, a blogger dealing with traction alopecia, meets up with a female British rapper who previously underwent a hair transplant for her traction alopecia. Also in the documentary, vlogger Perry O’Bree who is dealing with androgenic alopecia shares about his own experiences.
Coming to terms with hair loss can be the source of a lot of unwanted stress and frustration. After all, we're quite attached to our hair. Even though a lot of men pull off the bald look extremely well, saying goodbye to a thick head of hair is difficult. But what if I told you that experiencing hair loss doesn't mean that you have to go bald? In fact, with the right treatment program, you might be able to stop the dreaded receding hairline.

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.
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