At Belgravia we are frequently asked a number of questions about the unisex, clinically-proven treatment minoxidil; here we answer ten of the most common queries. You can also click on the blue question titles for further information on each.
If you have alternative concerns or would like advice on another hair loss matter, simply get in touch by clicking the banner above. Or if you would like to explore treatment featuring high strength minoxidil formulations, please contact the centre directly.
Anyone using hair loss treatment who has queries regarding any part of their course should contact their provider – in the case of Belgravia this would be the client’s dedicated Treatment Advisor who can be contacted directly by phone or email, or via the centres’ main switchboard – for assistance.
Where and how you need to apply it depends on your condition and what form of shedding you are experiencing, but you can find a general guide to applying minoxidil products by clicking on the question title above.
During your initial consultation at Belgravia a hair loss specialist will show you how to apply minoxidil to your scalp. If you would ever like a refresher demonstration, just let your personal treatment advisor know and they can arrange this for you.
No, although it is advisable to wash your hair if not once per day then once every other day in order to avoid any build-up of minoxidil residue on the scalp. You should leave at least an hour after applying minoxidil before washing your hair.
3. Do you have to use minoxidil continuously to see results?
In terms of whether it is an on-going treatment, this depends on the condition you are using it for. If it is for a permanent hair loss condition such as Male Pattern Baldness or Female Hair Loss then, because the DHT which causes thinning hair in these cases is produced constantly and therefore treatment to counteract this is on-going. In instances where the hairloss is temporary, such as Telogen Effluvium, once the hair has regrown the treatment may be stopped in some cases.
Where the condition may be either temporary or recurring, such as Alopecia Areata, if the hair grows back you can stop treatment and hair growth should remain. Some people have recurring alopecia, where patches may return. In such cases you can continue to use minoxidil on any new patches.
In all of these cases, Belgravia clients will be assisted and advised by their treatment advisor and hair loss specialist nurse in order to closely monitor the situation and ensure the best course of action for the client at all times, throughout.
For any condition it is important to be consistent with your usage and apply every day as instructed.
Depending on how long you stop for before starting again, and the condition you are experiencing, your hair will most likely start to shed again.
Firstly, we understand this can be disconcerting but it is nothing to worry about – in fact it is a good sign! When Belgravia clients first start using high strength minoxidil, a small number may find that for a short period their hair starts shedding in slightly larger amounts than before. This can happen in both men and women and is temporary. The hair that sheds will be replaced by new, stronger hair.
No. Using more than the dosage specified by your hair loss specialist can be dangerous and it is important that you only use the amount advised by your hair loss specialist. Your minoxidil has been recommended to ensure optimum results for your case so you do not need to use any more than has been prescribed. It can also make you more likely to experience skin irritation and dryness due to excessive use.
Yes. Assuming you are medically suitable, it is fine to use minoxidil following a hair transplant. In fact, many hair restoration surgeons recommend following a full male hair loss treatment course for at least six months prior to this type of surgery, and then on an on-going basis after surgery once the scalp has healed, as aftercare. This can help to keep the effects of male pattern baldness at bay in the original, untouched hairs surrounding the restored areas.
Yes. Bear in mind, the longer you wait the better as this will give minoxidil the best chance to fully absorb. However, having a week’s holiday and going for a swim 30 minutes after applying minoxidil won’t be the end of the world. A small study carried out in 1990 determined that 50% of minoxidil was absorbed within 1 hour and 75% within 4 hours. Not much more will be absorbed after this period of time. We don’t feel that going for a swim 30 minutes after applying minoxidil from time to time (or when on holiday) will make too much difference to your overall results, so don’t fret!
In terms of showering and washing your hair, the same rules apply but our advice would be to apply minoxidil after showering and drying your hair, and not before. Make sure your hair and scalp are dry in order to ensure the minoxidil is not diluted on the scalp, or evaporated when drying your hair. An alternative for both swimming or showering would be wear a swim or shower cap.
9 Can you apply haircare or styling products to the scalp after using minoxidil?
We advise hair products such as gel, wax hairspray, leave-in conditioners, serums or thickening concealer fibres to be applied before minoxidil. It will be much more effective to style your hair, wait for the product to dry and then use the syringe to carefully apply minoxidil to the scalp afterwards. Styling your hair after doing this may cause a number of problems including dilution of minoxidil and absorption into the hair.
10 Can you use scalp products or sun cream whilst using minoxidil?
Yes but try to give minoxidil an hour to absorb before applying scalp products, such as oils, or sun cream. As with swimming or washing your hair, the longer the better, but don’t worry too much unless you are doing this every day.
Women: Although it is fine up until conception, women must not use any minoxidil products during their pregnancy. So as soon as the pregnancy is confirmed treatment must be stopped. Due to an increase in hormones throughout the pregnancy, the active phase of the hair growth cycle becomes extended, meaning thicker- looking hair.
This will generally be shed once the baby is born due to the temporary hair loss condition Post-Partum Alopecia, but treatment can be resumed once the baby has been born and any breastfeeding stops, so this can be brought back under control again with the help of your specialist.
It is prudent to seek their advice before resuming your previous treatment course as the components may need tweaking to ensure they are right for your level and pattern of shedding at the time of restarting.
Men: Whilst you and your partner are trying to conceive you may continue to use minoxidil but we advise our male clients to stop taking finasteride 1mg one week beforehand. This is the case throughout your partner’s pregnancy then, once the baby is born and after any breastfeeding has ended, you may restart your full treatment regime.
The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.