Minoxidil vs. Biotin: Which one’s better?

Hair loss is rather difficult to deal with, especially if you aren’t one to take things quietly. It happens to men, women across ages and sometimes even young teenagers fall prey to hair loss or hair thinning. In mean it is characterized by a receding hair line and in women by the loss of hair density. In either case, it is traumatic. That’s why people are resorting to external means to save hair. The medicine doing the rounds is minoxidil, a hair growing topical hair oil and a natural vitamin, biotin. There are people that vouch for the benefits of each type, and there are people that have tried both and given up. Let’s take a look at these two to decide what will work best for you.

All about minoxidil

MinoxidilMinoxidil is sold as Mintop or Rogaine. It’s a topical medication that is applied on the affected area. It works best in people that have mild to moderate hair loss and are relatively younger. Earlier it was used to mitigate hypertension and this side effect was deduced by chance. The idea was that it was used to dilate blood vessels so that blood could flow easily through arteries and veins and bring down the blood pressure. Now it is sold as an over the counter medication for hair loss. On applying it to your scalp, blood vessels near the hair follicles open up and have better access to nutrition. This results in hair growth, hair darkening and generally healthy hair. But the thing is that for hair growth you have to continuously keep on using minoxidil regularly. When you stop its usage hair growth also stops and you are back to step one.

Minoxidil has certain side effects like rashes and flaking of the scalp, extreme dryness and swelling where you apply it and itchiness. But these can be mitigated using other medicines and are not too severe in nature.

All about biotin

Biotin is also known as Vitamin h or the hair growing vitamin. It is water soluble B vitamin that is required for cell growth and metabolism functions in the body. It also helps with the production of proteins in the body and hair is made up of keratin which is a kind of protein. It strengthens the hair follicles and ensures that a constant level of nutrition is maintained at their end. Since this is water soluble vitamin a and is produced in our body itself, in excess of the required quantity, there actually are no side effects to this. It will just be excreted in the form of sweat or urine, so no side effects. But in case you are facing biotin deficiency, biotin supplements can fix it. Ask your doctor for the required dosage.

Our verdict

The no side effects feature is where biotin scored over Minoxidil. But results from biotin are a little slower. So you have to pick for yourself, which is it you want, safe or fast?

Minoxidil- Magical Hair re-growth solution or just a scam?

Minoxidil Side EffectsJust as hair fall has become one of the major issues with people these days, so have hair re- growth solutions. Everybody, dry and sundry want to advertise their cures for hair fall and the market is flooded with tonics and medicines and what not, that claim to get your hair back. Some of them even have irreversible side effects that you may not be aware of. But one particular “Minoxidil” has been enjoying relative success in the hair re- growth domain! Let’s try to find out if it really is a solution or just another hair scam.

What is minoxidil?

If you have used Mintop or Rogaine, then you have used minoxidil. It is sold under these names. Chemically it was initially used to reduce blood pressure, but is now sold as an over the counter medication for hair growth or to arrest hair loss. The mechanism through which the medicine promotes hair growth hasn’t fully been understood yet. However that hasn’t stopped people from using it! Medically today minoxidil is sold to aid hair growth. But their effect from person to person will vary.

To sustain hair growth, minoxidil has to be used regularly and continuously. It is required to support existing hair follicles and also for maintaining any new hair growth. But it has shown more promise in younger people with mild to moderate hair loss. You hair could turn darker too.

How does minoxidil help in hair growth?

While there is no confirmed explanation yet, the one that’s doing the rounds is this one. Minoxidil dilates the blood vessels around the hair follicles and that enables more nutrition and oxygen supply to reach them. This stimulates their growth. This also explains why the hair growth reduces once you stop taking minoxidil. This is the theory since minoxidil basically is a vasodilator medication. So this explanation naturally follows.

How to use minoxidil?

You should consult your doctor before you start with this. Apply the oil on affected area of your head twice daily or as directed. You should be able to see results in two weeks time, but only if you are regular. Your scalp should clean and dry for the medication to work best. Also you are not to shampoo or sleep for up to at least two hours after applying the medicine. Minoxidil is a topical medication; hence you will see the effect on that particular area only.

Any side- effects?

Minoxidil Side effects are rather mild and they subside in a couple of days. It may cause drying, flaking, a burning sensation, and itching of the scalp. You can take other medicines to ease the symptom. Ask your doc.

Our verdict

Minoxidil is a medicine well its worth. However even though it does help with hair growth, always consult your doctor before starting on it. It shouldn’t interfere with any other medication that you are on. Also maintain a balanced diet during this time, so that your body has sufficient nutrient to send to the hair follicles.

Minoxidil For Women

Hair is probably a woman’s source of pride! The hair cut, the hair color, the length, the thickness and the shine is all a part of the woman’s personality. As kids your hair was being taken care of by your mom or grand mom maybe, but by now you would have figured out what works and doesn’t work for your hair. So imagine if you start losing hair or if it starts thinning! Many would say that this is an exaggeration, but it’s a life changing event! But there’s ways and means to fix it. And it should start with why the hair loss is happening at all!

Why do women have hair loss?

In women there is no receding hairline in most cases, but hair on the top of the head starts thinning, and overall density of hair decreases. And a lot of this has to do with the life cycle of a hair.

Minoxidil for womenThe lifecycle of a hair is quite simple. It grows for two to six years till it reaches the final length and then falls off. And how long or thick your hair is depends upon what’s happening underneath, that is what is happening with the hair’s life cycle. The things that affect it are stress, medication, erratic weight loss schedules, illness, rampant hair treatments or infection and of course heredity! It could even be your thyroid gland acting up or some auto- immune disorder. Let’s just focus on the most common cause for weak hair, and that is hair not receiving enough care. Care doesn’t mean expensive Minoxidil shampoos, oils, spas or conditioners. Care means what kind of diet you have and what kind of lifestyle you have.

The best way to go about keeping your hair is maintaining a healthy and balanced diet and regular exercise. Also you need to follow this up with some medication that ensures that your hair is getting all the nutrition that it deserves. This is where minoxidil comes in. keep reading to know more.

How does minoxidil help with hair growth?

Minoxidil is the latest wonder drug when it comes to hair regrowth or arresting hair fall. Earlier it was used to deal with high blood pressure and is essentially a vasodilator. That means it relaxes blood vessels so that blood flows easier and without constrictions. This is used as a hair loss solution because it helps with keeping the blood vessels near the hair follicles open, so that they receive more and better nutrition and oxygen. And this in turn contributes to hair growth.

It’s a topical medicine, so apply it on the affected area and don’t wash off before at least two hours of applying it. Ask your doctor for what doses you should take and how you should apply it. There are very minor side effects to minoxidil and they aren’t too severe. Your doc will advise you better with respect to this. Also tell him of any other medication or topical drugs that you may be using.

Does Lance Armstrong Use Minoxidil?

Minoxidil Side Effects People were glued to their television sets, when the former 7 time Tour de Force champion was apologizing to Oprah Winfrey after being convicted of doping charges. Even though the cyclist talked at length about the long time controversy surrounding his use of performance enhancement drugs, he stopped short from apologizing for his actions.

Most of us also noticed his thin, receding hair line. Now Armstrong has always sported a short hair style, but on Oprah’s show it was obvious that his hair was thinning around his temples. Upon close examination, a “V” pattern balding is apparent.

What could be causing his hair loss? Did taking those performance enhancing drugs contribute to his hair loss?

Generally, “V pattern baldness” is a genetic condition called male pattern baldness or androgenic alopecia. It is a medical condition that usually starts after puberty. This type of hair loss is present in 95% of hair loss cases in males. It is characterized by hair thinning out from the sides of the forehead, then leading to the crown eventually causing a horseshoe like shape at the back of the head. Armstrong appears to be at the early stages of male pattern baldness.

Current research indicates that drugs cause a sudden shock to the system, which in effect can cause short term hair loss. Prolonged use of performance enhancing drugs may lead to prolonged hair loss. The USADA, US Anti-Doping Agency has charged Armstrong with taking Corticosteroids, Testosterone and even Human Growth Hormones. It is a known fact that these drugs do cause hair loss as a side effect, however this only for a short duration. Within six months, the hair grows back.

How can Armstrong prevent this medical condition from progressing?

Doctors at The Belgravia Centre, which is a leading hair loss clinic in the UK, suggest that Armstrong could try one of their comprehensive treatment programs. It involves using Minoxidil 10% and 12.5% strength creams. This is applied to the problem areas, twice a day and has been shown to have great results. Minoxidil’s success lies in its ability to trigger potassium channels within the scalp. If this treatment does not yield significant results, Minoxidil is often combined with another medication such as Propecia, Rogaine and other hair growth boosters. This will ensure that Armstrong’s hair will grow back healthier and stronger.

Minoxidil slows down the hair loss and also supports the growth of new hair. For men 5% solution is more effective in comparison to the 2% solution. Using Minoxidil has the following benefits:

  1. It stimulates the regrowth of the hair for who have a genetic tendency towards pattern baldness.
  2. It seals the gap and gives the hair a fuller and thicker appearance.
  3. There is no prescription needed to buy this. You can even order it online.

Before you take minoxidil it is best to read how to use and application to avoid any Minoxidil side effects.


Have your recently starting wearing hats EVERYWHERE you go? Do you feel embarrassed by what seems like a map that is forming on the back of your head? Going bald before your friends do is quite embarrassing. But look no further. Our Top 3 Shampoos for Hair Regrowth will arm you with the information you need to help you make the decision of choosing the right product.

1) Rogaine (Minoxidil)

Minoxidil ShampooRogaine is the number one treatment prescribed for male pattern baldness. Minoxidil is the active ingredient in this medication. It is marketed under different trade names such as Vanarex, Loniten and Amexidil. Rogaine is applied as a topical cream twice a day. Its active ingredient Minoxidil, will penetrate the scalp and cause it to shed your old existing hairs. This takes about two weeks to occur. Eventually Minoxidil will cause the size of your hair follicles to become larger, resulting in thicker hair growth. Rogaine was originally used for treating hypertension until they discovered that the side effect was hair regrowth. It was first sold an oral drug later changing to the present cream form. For males, this cream is available in 5% strength solution and for females in 2% strength solution. You can easily purchase this medication over the counter.

2) Ketoconazole Shampoos

Ketoconazole is the active ingredient in shampoos used to treat dandruff. Later it was discovered that this chemical causes hair regrowth. It is currently added in antidandruff shampoos with the added benefit that it maintains the natural oils in the follicle and shaft. Shampoos containing ketoconazole come in either 1 % or 2% strength solutions. When taken orally and in high doses, research indicates that the effect is weak. Nizoral is a popular andtidandruff shampoo on the market that contains ketoconazole in 2% solution. It is also used as an antifungal and can be purchased in foam form to treat various skin conditions. The FDA has approved the use of ketoconazole for dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis not hair loss. Further research of this ingredient is required in order to ascertain the effects of prolonged use.

3) Propecia

Also known as Finasteride, it is taken in pill form. In the market it is also sold as Proscar. It works by blocking DHT (dihydrotestosterone) from forming on your scalp. DHT is an androgen hormone produced in the male reproductive organs. This medication requires you to be strictly monitored by your doctor because it may have some adverse side effects. Some of these include depression, decreased sex drive and tenderness in the breasts. Women who are pregnant must abstain from taking this medication as it is known to cause birth defects in foetuses.

Choosing the right hair regrowth product is a personal decision. Make sure you are armed with enough information before you make your choice. It is always better to consult your physician before making the final decision. Using hair regrowth products definitely returns some of the confidence that you lose from the embarrassment of hair loss.