Minoxidil usage guidelines: How and when should I apply?

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Male Hair Loss- Questions, Questions | HairMD | July 4, 2021

Recently, almost everyone is suffering from unmanageable hair loss. For people who face hair loss, dermatologists generally prescribe medications such as Minoxidil, Finasteride. Minoxidil is a widely used US FDA approved medication used for hair loss. Many people start using it without consulting Dermatologists, which is completely wrong, as it can lead to several side-effects.

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Male-pattern hair loss and female-pattern hair loss is also called androgenic alopecia. In men, it’s their center and side partings that are most affected. In females, it usually starts with hair thinning, and then the middle part starts receding. There have been many medications, as well as, treatments for hair loss and hair regrowth. One of the best inventions in medications were Minoxidil and Finasteride, which are US FDA approved medications.

What is Minoxidil?

Minoxidil, a US FDA approved medication widely used to treat hair loss effectively. It is a topical solution, and it has to be applied to the scalp. Minoxidil helps to convert your hair’s telogen phase, that is the falling phase of the hair follicle, to the anagen phase i.e. active growth phase of hair follicles. It also helps the hair roots with good blood circulation, so it promotes hair regrowth.

Minoxidil is available in different variants in the market, ranging from 2%, 5%, and 10%. Generally, 2% are prescribed to females, at the start of the treatment. In males, the dosage is increased as per their scalp needs. It is also seen that minoxidil works well if taken with Finasteride oral medication, a US FDA-approved medication and with the mainstream of treatments like mesotherapy, derma roller, PRP.

Nowadays, most teenagers use minoxidil without any prescription, and they face lots of other side effects.  Minoxidil doesn’t provide any results in the balding area. Minoxidil is generally used everywhere but only with your doctor’s advice. This medication is only for topical application and it is available in spray and foam form.

How many times a day to use minoxidil?

To get the full impact of the solution you need to apply it twice a day, daily. This will help slow hair loss and trigger hair regrowth. Usually, men will start seeing results in four to six months; that is, if the product is used consistently you will see positive results. Here are some tips you can use when applying minoxidil:

  • Ensure that the hair and scalp are dry
  • You don’t have to shampoo your hair, before each application
  • The dropper should be filled to the 1 ML mark, this will be considered as one dose
  • Apply the dose to the crown area of your scalp.
  • You can part your hair into five partitions and apply a drop to each section
  • Once minoxidil is applied, you can rub it on your scalp
  • Avoid wetting your hair at least four hours after the medicine application

How long should you keep minoxidil for?

The results are usually seen within six months, so you must use the medicine consistently until then. Of course, you have to consult with your doctor and have constant follow-ups. They will analyze your results and recommend whether the dosage should be increased or decreased. Don’t change the dosage without consulting the doctor, also it is advisable to keep application of Minoxidil for at least 4 hours a day before washing off.

Can I use Minoxidil without consulting a Dermatologist?

No, you must consult a dermatologist before using minoxidil. It is generally prescribed to be used twice a day. The percentage dosage of minoxidil will be decided by the dermatologist after assessing your hair fall severity.


Can I use Minoxidil without consulting Dermatologist?


Does minoxidil work if used once a day?

Applying minoxidil once a day is fine. This is because the average lifespan of applied minoxidil is about 20-22 hours on the scalp, which again differs for each person. But for better results, it is always prescribed to use it two times daily. So, it is always better to follow your Dermatologist’s guidance, which will give you better results according to your scalp need.

Does minoxidil have side effects?

Side effects of minoxidil include:

  • Flaking of scalp
  • Burning at site of application
  • Growth of Facial hair
  • Inflammation of the scalp
  • Face swelling

It is essential to have follow up checkups with the doctor in case you experience any such side effects.

To learn more about minoxidil treatment and other medications for hair loss, book a consultation with a HairMD expert.

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