Men’s hair loss is flash-quick. If you see the first signs of thinning hair, you have to do everything possible to slow down the process a.s.a.p. because today you see first fallen hairs tomorrow — blink — you’re suffering from severe alopecia. Hair experts swear it is easier to save hair than try to regrow it or hide baldness. Let’s investigate the main hair loss causes and choose the best hair loss treatment for men that will work for you in particular too.
Men’s hair loss is much more common than you think. 60% of hair loss sufferers are men. More than half of men face this problem with age after their 50s (senescent alopecia). So, firstly, you are not alone; secondly, there are plenty of solutions that work in different cases and for versatile hair textures, lengths and even colors. Let’s sort things out!
Common and Unheard Causes of Men’s Hair Loss
Men may start to voice the question, “Why is my hair thinning?” in their 20s. Statistics state that 25% of young men begin to notice first signs of hair thinning at this age, as it is one of the peaks of hair loss onset. Really, why?
There exist dozens of hair loss myths. Some believe extreme hair fall may be caused by stress, others blame harsh environmental conditions; sometimes smoking, frequent styling, loss of weight and hardcore exercising are linked with men’s thinning hair. Where is the truth?
According to experts from the American Academy of Dermatology, hair loss is triggered when something blocks its growth. In medical terms, this condition is called “anagen effluvium” — the pathological loss of hairs during the hair cycle’s phase of growth.
Its main causes are the following:
- genetics – almost all hair loss cases are hereditary;
- immune system malfunctions;
- drugs, medical treatments (chemotherapy, acne treatments, heart medications, blood thinners, antidepressants);
- different allergic reactions;
- enormous protein or vitamin deficiency.
Hair loss disorders are usually caused by a combination of multiple factors as they may also be influenced by the endocrine system, appear due to problems with metabolism, because of poor nutrition and many other factors. Rarer alopecia is linked with type 2 diabetes, Crohn’s disease, hair-pulling disorder (trichotillomania), seborrhea, weaving or braiding (traction alopecia), scarring from accidents or burns or going vegetarian/vegan (giving up meat may cause anaemia).
The Process of Hair Loss
As we have already said, the majority of men’s hair loss cases (app. 95%) are about genetic alopecia. Let’s try to understand the process of hair loss. Everything is pretty simple. You have to blame a steroid and hormone DHT in your progressive loss of hair. The dihydrotestosterone (or androstanolone) is converted from testosterone. What about genes? Some men have hair follicles that are more sensitive to this DHT hormone. It shrinks the follicles more and more with every new hair growth cycle and finally hairs can’t grow out of them.
Are You at Risk?
Men who have close relatives with the same problem (most likely on the maternal side as the gene is carried on the X chromosome, females have two X’s) are at most risk. The risk increases with age as older men have reduced hormonal support.
It is also said that Caucasians are more prone to male-pattern baldness. Afro-Caribbeans are in second place. Chinese, Japanese and Native Americans don’t go bald as often.
Modern Men’s Hair Loss Treatments and Remedies
Time to briefly describe the main hair loss treatments and remedies, the truth about which you need to know if you suffer from hair falling out.
Hair Loss Supplements
In other words — pills. Hair loss supplements are usually a mix of drugs and natural components. The most well-known medication is finasteride; it lowers the DHT hormone and steroid production and is sold as “Proscar” or “Propecia”. Trichologists also mention ketoconazole as a good antifungal drug against male hair loss.
If you are keener on buying oral medications than topical products, look for biotin, keratin and oils on packaging. A huge list of vitamins is also crucial (especially B and C). If your hair is falling out, the increased intake of protein, iron and omega 3 will be a good idea.
Topical Hair Loss Treatments
These are applied to the scalp and hair. These are all shampoos, conditioners, foams, etc. Such products can be divided into 2 groups: temporary and those with long-lasting effects. The last are sometimes recommended if pills don’t work or as an addition to hair loss medicines. As an example, the American Hair Loss Association advises trying minoxidil for those guys who don’t respond well to finasteride treatment. Most effective are considered topical treatments for thinning hair, which include drugs.
Inflammations in hair follicles may keep hair from regrowing too. Low-level laser therapy aims at reducing them. It encourages protein synthesis and stimulates the blood flow. 80% of people have less shedding after this therapy; 40% obtain thicker locks. However, it is costly. You may consider laser at-home handheld devices as an alternative (helmets, brushes and even caps).
During the hair replacement surgery healthy hairs are moved from the back and/or sides of the head to its top (from thicker parts to bald spots). It is a costly process that needs several repetitions and takes half a year to grow out hair to its normal thickness, density and length. It may leave scars, especially the so-called “strip method” (90 percent regrowth rate). After the follicular unit extraction you will be able to wear fave fades again (80 percent regrowth rate). Using artificial synthetic fibers instead real human hairs is not recommended as it may cause infections.
Cell Therapy (Platelet Rich Plasma)
A method taken from cardiology and plastic surgery: a small amount of the patient’s blood is drawn out and separated in a centrifuge, platelets are then re-injected into the area with thinned hair. The result — stimulation of natural hair growth. It may be used in conjunction with a hair transplant. This procedure is still in the process of studies and improvement.
Natural Hair Loss Treatments
In comparison with all other methods it sounds like placebo… However, all’s fair in war. Why not try natural remedies before opting for surgery? Best hair oils that may lead to some improvements are rosemary, peppermint, ginkgo biloba, lavender and alma oils. Among plants aloe vera and green tea may work. And, of course, they are better mixed, as in some of the products below.
Men also share on hair loss forums different hair growth masks. The fave ingredients are onion juice, egg oil, coconut oil, garlic and ginger juices, vitamin E, and avocado.
They look like torture instruments, but according to lots of positive feedback they don’t hurt very much. A derma roller is a scalp care tool with micro needles. It causes small incisions on the skin of the head. The skin begins to regenerate more actively and hair grows better. A debatable tool, you should think twice before buying it. It’s better to stick to what is proven to work.
There also exist a lot of high-tech methods of hair regrowth and medications that have already been announced but not fully studied and released yet, such as histogen hair stimulation, hair follicle neogenesis, a steroidal anti-androgen breezula, etc.
Best Hair Loss Treatments worth Trying
The sooner you begin hair loss treatment the better. So don’t waste your time and start choosing your savior right now. Check our comparison chart first and read detailed info below.
|Product||What Is It?||Best For||Use||Price|
|Ultrax Labs Supplement - Editor’s Choice||dietary supplement, 60 tablets||men and women with thinning hair and light hair loss||2 capsules a day with a meal|
|Rogaine’s Foam||unscented foam (aerosol)||hereditary hair loss, on vertex||twice a day|
|Kirkland Hair Regrowth Treatment||unscented liquid (with dropper applicator)||hereditary hair loss, on vertex||twice a day|
|DasGro Vitamins for Hair Growth||dietary supplement, 60 tablets||weak hair, alopecia areata sufferers, receding hairlines||2 tablets daily|
|Wild Growth Hair Oil||thick hair oil, squeeze bottle||natural black hair, kinky curls, braids||5–15 drops 3 times a week|
|Ultrax Labs Mask||thick mask, "men's shampoo" smell||slowly growing hair, all hair textures, split ends||twice per week/daily|
|Amplixin Serum||clear liquid serum (spray)||normal to thinning hair, dry frizzy locks||daily after showering, 2–3 times a week|
#1: Ultrax Labs Supplement – The Right Hairstyles’ Choice
Why are vitaminized supplements highly recommended for men? Hair growth depends heavily on the minerals and vitamins you give your body. The majority of us are not dieticians, so creating a balanced diet with right daily vitamin doses is a real brainteaser. Supplements like Ultrax Labs are ready-to-use solutions, formulated, tested and approved by professionals. They include all vitamins, the lack of which may trigger hair loss.
The main zest of the Ultrax Labs nutrient product is solubilized keratin. It works wonders for increasing hair thickness. Other active ingredients are nettle leaf (blocks DHT) and pumpkin seed (promotes hair growth) powders. The supplement also includes 23 essential vitamins that are all crucial for healthy hair (Zink, Magnesium, B6 among them). Saw palmetto blocks 5-alpha-reductase, which converts testosterone into the DHT. Biotin in this formulation revitalizes hair follicles and stimulates them to grow new hairs.
For best results the Ultrax Labs supplement has to be taken for 90 days (2 pills per day with meals). It may be also combined with other hair recovery products from this article — topical foams, shampoos and serums.
#2: Rogaine’s Foam – Bestseller 5% Minoxidil Topical Treatment
Rogaine’s foam is Amazon’s #1 product among all hair and scalp treatments for men. Minoxidil, its main active component, widens blood vessels, increases blood flow in the scalp and boosts hair follicles’ activity, reinvigorating them. In such a way it reactivates hair’s natural growth cycle. What’s more, minoxidil increases hair protein production, improving its density (hair fiber is 91% made of keratinized protein, its lack may cause hair fall too). Botanical extracts condition locks; alpha hydroxy acid promotes natural skin exfoliation and keeps follicles open.
Alas, your hair won’t regrow overnight. First results may be visible after 3–4 months. Rogaine’s foam works for regrowing hair on the vertex only (the top of your scalp) and if it is hereditary. Also, you’ll need to continue using Rogaine after satisfactory results too or hair loss will appear again.
#3: Kirkland Hair Regrowth Treatment – 5% Minoxidil Solution for Androgenic Alopecia
Budget-friendly Rogaine-analogue is a topical solution with 5% minoxidil from an Israeli manufacturer. The main aim of this product is hair regrowth on the top of the scalp as well. It keeps follicles from going through the shedding phase and reactivates them. They enlarge and start to produce new, healthy hairs.
The manufacturer does not recommend it if hair loss is at the beginning stage, i.e., just slightly visible. Also it cannot be used for frontal baldness pattern and men’s receding hairline in cases of sudden or patchy hair loss. One more interesting detail — minoxidil may sometimes change hair color or hair texture.
Recommended period of product’s use is 2–4 months for visible results and forever for a lifetime effect.
#4: DasGro Vitamins for Hair Growth – Hormonal Hair Loss Supplement
DasGro vitamins are a great example of a dietary supplement that first of all cures vitamin deficiency, one of the main causes of thinning hair problem. It is unisex, formulated without fillers, preservatives and other unwanted components but with 20+ powerful ingredients. Green tea, saw palmetto, grape seed extract, ginkgo biloba and their equally healthy “companions” will definitely strengthen your hair and make it thicker.
One more ingredient is methyl-sulfonyl-methane, similar to the sulfur compound produced by the human body. Its intake can help to form hair’s keratin proteins and strengthen the immune system, disorders of which cause alopecia areata. Biotin supports a healthy scalp environment. It is recommended to use DasGro vitamins for 3–6 months (1 pack = 1 month).
#5: Wild Growth Hair Oil – Conditioning and Detangling Product
Wild Growth oil has a very concentrated formula that perfectly softens, detangles and “de-kinks” thinning hair. It’s a top solution for first bald spots, thinning temples, and slowly growing locks. Its main components are nourishing coconut, olive and rice bran oils.
The dose: 15–20 drops for African quality hair, 5–15 for all other hair types, less for short, fine locks. It is used on damp hair, often as a pre-poo or while blow drying (depending on hair texture). As far as it is very concentrated, you have to start using it slowly, once a week. If no allergy occurs, it can be used once every two days. Three times per week works the best.
The effect — stronger, conditioned and less frizzy locks. Reviewers also mention that hair doesn’t tangle as much after this oil treatment and the texture becomes a bit looser. It may help you to get rid of flakes if you have a dry scalp.
#6: Ultrax Labs Mask – Hair Growth Stimulating Hair Mask
We found this among Amazon’s best masks and noticed its high rating (5 stars!). Reviewers rave about its super-hydrating and softening effects. Let’s check its ingredients.
Caffeine awakes follicles without hairs and stimulates their enlargement. Aloe vera heals irritations and inflammations. A mix of best hair loss oils (amla, jojoba, argan) adds all possible nutrients to your locks.
The mask is great not only for men’s thinning hair, but also for split ends, over-processed hair, for bleached locks and curly hair textures. It must be used at least twice per week (btw, you have to leave it in hair for 2 min before rinsing). It lasts for 2–6 months depending on hair length, and results may be seen in a few weeks. It will be a good investment in your hair, salon stylists swear by this product!
#7: Amplixin Serum – Natural Product for Receding Hairlines
Amplixin serum is a unique leave-in hair loss product on the market. 80% of reviewers give it 5 stars, and this means it works for the majority of thinning hair sufferers. It is believed to restore moisture in damaged, dry and frizzy locks.
The product is biotin and caffeine infused. This duo penetrates the scalp, moisturizes it and influences follicles. Aloe vera and natural oils work on repairing inactive follicles. Amplixin’s serum is free of parabens and sulfates, thus it can be used daily.
The product strengthens hair roots, protects locks from environmental pollutants, brings back shine and density, relieves irritations and itchiness, and effectively cleans the pores. It works on all ethnicities.
Buyer’s Guide and FAQ
We asked a selection of hair specialists to answer the most frequent male hair loss questions. Here is what we’ve got. Some of the answers are a total disappointment, others are super-inspiring.
How Is It Possible to Distinguish between Hair Loss and Hair Shedding?
Hair shedding, as experts of the AAD explain, does not progress and stop on its own. If you shed more than usual (50–100 hairs per day is the norm), you have excessive hair shedding. This state is called “telogen effluvium” (which arises during the telogen, resting stage of the hair cycle) and may be experienced after giving birth, stopping birth control pill intake, any stressful situation, operations or serious illness.
Hair loss has other causes (described at the beginning of the article), is progressive and doesn’t stop until its main cause stops. A sure sign of hair loss is a receding “M-shaped” hairline and thinning temples. If you don’t start treating this, the bald spot on the top of your head will appear with time. The next stage is a “horseshoe” pattern of hair on the sides. This is simplified progressive male-pattern baldness (Norwood scale). Some men have only a receding hairline (bitemporal recession) or thinning crown (vertex), others may have diffusing general thinning.
Are Male Baldness Pattern, Alopecia and Hair Loss the Same?
Hair loss is a process of losing hair in men or women despite its causes (alopecia, baldness, etc.).
Male baldness pattern, which has another name, androgenic alopecia, is a hereditary hair loss that affects men of any age (puberty, 20s and 50s are the peaks). Women’s hair loss, by analogy, is called a women-pattern. Male pattern baldness usually takes 15–25 years for a man to go bald.
Can the term “hair loss” be substituted with the term “alopecia”? Not always. Alopecia has several types. Patchy alopecia, or “areata”, is a condition that causes hair loss. Hair falls out in round patches (on the scalp as well as on any part of your body). This alopecia is not caused by stress either. Hair follicles are attacked by the immune system and hair falls out. It is an autoimmune disorder!
If a man loses all hair on his scalp it is called alopecia totalis (20% of all men’s and women’s cases of alopecia areata). Complete hair loss across all of the body is known as alopecia universalis.
Alas, there is no cure for alopecia areata. However, follicles still remain “alive” and the process of hair restoration may be triggered even if you have only 50% of your hair left on your head. But you need to act as quickly as you can.
Does Stress Cause Hair Loss?
One of the most frequently asked questions. We answered it partly before: androgenic alopecia is hereditary, alopecia areata and its subtypes are autoimmune problems. Nevertheless, stress can still trigger excess hair shedding. It begins 2–4 weeks after the traumatic event, and then may continue for several months more. Then it stops. However, you will not see bald spots or a receding hairline during this time. Your hair will just shed a little more than usual.
Are There Any Lab Tests to Find Out the Hair Loss Cause?
A dermatologist can distinguish between different conditions by using clinical and medical histories, by scalp examination and taking a skin biopsy. There is a hope that in the near future a standardized test for male and female alopecia genes will be made.
Are Hair Loss Shampoos Able to Combat Hair Loss?
Most thickening shampoos, conditioners and powder-like hair building fibers give just temporary results. They coat the hair and make it look fuller or fill the thinnest spots on your head, creating an illusion of thickness. The above described treatments from this article aim at penetrating the scalp. This results in growing out new, fuller hairs.
Can Improved Nutrition Help to Regrow Hair?
Healthy eating, hair loss shampoos, scalp massage, home remedies and other efforts to stop visible hair loss (if it is truly hair loss, not shedding) are ineffective. They work if you want to prevent hair from falling out and don’t have bald spots yet. On the other hand, healthy eating and quitting smoking can’t hurt anyone. So just do it!
Do You Need to Use Hair Loss Treatments Lifelong?
In most cases, yes. Alopecia is mostly a lifelong disorder. So, firstly, you need 2–4 or sometimes even 12 months to see if a chosen product really works for you. And if you notice your hair is finally regrowing (even looking more like fuzz), you will not want to stop treatment and loose these effects. Using the hair loss product has to become your everyday routine, deal with it.
What Side Effects May Hair Loss Treatments Have?
Despite the fact that the above-mentioned supplements and topical products consist of many natural ingredients, some side effects are still possible. Pills, for example, may cause dizziness, confusion, skin itchiness, face swelling, sleepiness, etc. They are intended for adults with no medical conditions. So if you have a chronic disease or just don’t feel very well you ought to consult a doctor or a physician beforehand. Minoxidil has fewer side effects compared to other medication; however, it is also less effective.
The main side effects of hair loss treatments are allergic reactions. Pills, shampoos, foams and sprays are usually very concentrated and include a whole pack of different ingredients.
If any reactions appear discontinue use of supplements or other products immediately.
Will Your Children Inherit Hair Loss?
The gene for androgen receptors lies on the X chromosome and males inherit the X chromosome directly from their mother. So it is more likely that a kid can inherit hair loss from his grandfather (33% chance) but not from his father. But there are also other genes, independent of sex. That is why this scheme doesn’t always work. 2% of the US population is at risk of having one form of hair loss, so you never know what Mother Nature will gift to your little one. Time will show.
What Else Can Be Done to Stimulate Hair Growth for Men?
You cannot prevent hair loss or cure it in the traditional sense. But you may slow it down and make the rest of your hair look its best. There exist several more secrets, not mentioned previously. So you may do the following things:
- Drink more water: the hair shaft is ¼ made of water, so staying hydrated is important if you want to have healthy hair.
- Eat foods high in antioxidants: they will not double the number of hairs on your scalp but will help to slow down the progress of hair loss.
- Learn how to do a scalp massage: it improves blood flow (5–10 minutes twice a week, with a shampoo or hair growth mask).
- Choose a good comb: to avoid pulling and teasing poor locks even more.
- Sleep a lot: a good sleep has healing powers; disruption to the biological clock may affect the follicles’ growth cycle too.
- Drink less alcohol: if you take any hair growth pills, alcohol may lessen their effects.
- Improve your physical activity: it balances hormonal levels and reduces stress.
- Consult a certified trichologist or dermatologist: if your measures don’t work, hair loss is progressing or your hair’s condition worsens after certain pills or products.
- Make the right haircut for a receding hairline or choose one from a selection for thin hair: it will hide bald spots and boost self-esteem.
- Be inspired by famous people and celebrities: a lot of them experienced (Shakespeare) or continue to experience hair loss (Bruce Willis, Matthew McConaughey, Jason Statham, David Beckham) but they do not actually look like “sufferers”, right?
- Make a tattoo: surprising method, but a lot of men replicate hairs with the help of dermatography (works for men’s short hair only).
- Find emotional support: hair loss, especially premature, may be traumatic, but there are a lot of support groups across the internet the members of which will encourage you a lot.
And don’t believe in the myth that shaving your head will make your hair regrow faster, thicker and denser. There is also not enough evidence that acupuncture and aromatherapy help in eliminating hair loss.
It becomes clear that minoxidil is still considered the best hair loss treatment for men. However, science moves on, and along with proven cures new promising products appear. We have a hunch that this is not our last article about surefire treatments for thinning hair, receding hairlines and male baldness pattern. Stay tuned to be among the first to receive all updates on innovative products!