Using Finasteride and minoxidil together for hair loss
Reviewed by our clinical team
Male pattern baldness affects nearly half of men by the time they’re 60, and for lots of men it’s just a natural part of getting older.
Some men don’t feel the need to try and slow their hair loss, but if you are thinking about treatment, there are two main clinically proven options available:
- Finasteride (a prescription-only treatment available in tablet form)
- Minoxidil (an over-the-counter treatment available in a foam or solution)
What some people don’t know is that you can actually use both these treatments at the same time. In this article we’re going to look in detail at finasteride and minoxidil (often known by its branded name Regaine) and the potential benefits of using them together.
Although some makers of finasteride are cautious about using finasteride (sometimes known by the brand name Propecia) and Regaine together, there have now been a few studies looking at how well this works. In a nutshell, the combination of oral finasteride and topical minoxidil seems to have overall better results than either of those treatments alone. Only one study has looked at the safety; but what we do now that the combination is being widely used in the community.
How do Finasteride and minoxidil work together for hair loss?
To understand how finasteride and minoxidil can work together, it is good to first know what causes hereditary male pattern baldness. It is a result of genetic factors and a male hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT can contribute to hair loss by inducing a change in the hair follicles on the scalp.
The hairs produced by the affected follicles become progressively smaller in diameter, shorter in length and lighter in colour, leading to thinning, receding hairlines and baldness.
Finasteride works by reducing the effects of DHT on the follicles. In this sense, it's a “DHT blocker”, though it is not referred to by this name amongst medical professionals. Finasteride doesn't provide a permanent cure for male baldness, so if you stop taking it, hair loss will resume. Finasteride is not thought to have any interactions with minoxidil, so they are sometimes recommended to use together by hair loss specialists.
Minoxidil, the active ingredient in Regaine for men, works by:
- Stimulating the shrunken hair follicles
- Helping increase the blood flow to your scalp, which helps follicles to increase in size and diameter
- Reinvigorating the hair growth cycle
Daily routine for using Finasteride and minoxidil
Finasteride (also branded as Propecia)
1mg tablet taken orally once a day.
Minoxidil (also branded as Regaine for Men)
Both the Regaine foam and Regaine solution can be used twice a day. As soon as the treatment is dry, you can style your hair normally.
What other treatments or remedies can I use for hair loss?
There are many online and over-the-counter foams, lotions, shampoos and supplements, as well as prescription medications. Other than Finasteride, Propecia and minoxidil, there aren’t many other proven treatments for male pattern baldness.
People might suggest vitamins for hair loss, but the best way to get the nutrients your hair needs is by eating a healthy balanced diet.
Which hair loss treatment is right for me?
If you’re seeking treatment for male pattern baldness, it can be difficult to decide which remedies can work for you. But if you’re considering a prescription treatment, you can go through our online hair loss consultation to see if Finasteride/Propecia is clinically right for you. You can also use our service to order Regaine foam, on its own or request it as part of a bundle with Finasteride.
If you're using Finasteride or Propecia already, you could also order our over the counter hair loss treatment bundle. The pack contains 5% minoxidil solution, DHT blocking shampoo and biotin tablets.