The advent of the internet means that today’s old wives’ tales will exist forever. And when it comes to hair loss
, this means that mythical “miracle cures” containing everything from garlic and onion
to Tabasco sauce and cow urine will likely be be applied to the scalps of misled men for years to come.
According to an article in the Daily Express, a new wonder treatment can be added to the list, and a quick poll of their readers suggests that most men - 71 per cent of respondents - would be willing to give it a try. Luckily, there’s nothing especially yucky or costly about it, but it’s certainly a little bizarre: the latest suggestion for dealing with the genetic hair loss condition Male Pattern Baldness
is to pour diluted baking soda on it.
Most common hair loss condition
Male Pattern Baldness is the most common hair loss condition there is, affecting around half of all men by the time they hit 50. Given that it can deeply affect men’s confidence and dent their self-esteem
it is unsurprising, perhaps, that many of them are prepared to try anything.
According to the Express, the latest fad for treating hair loss naturally involves mixing baking soda with water at a ratio of one part to three. They add that the idea of using baking soda on the hair has been endorsed by web pharmacist David Wolfe not as a treatment for Male Pattern Baldness
, however; on Wolfe’s website he says that baking soda can help remove chlorine
build-up after swimming.
While the internet may be awash with rumours and discussions about baking soda being able to stop Male Pattern Baldness, we are aware of literally zero reliable or published evidence to suggest this may be true. This is because some pretty significant biological events happen when MPB kicks in, and at present these can only be addressed by the only two clinically-proven, MHRA licensed plus FDA approved male hair loss treatments.
is a daily tablet which inhibits the formation of dihydrotestosterone
(DHT), whilst high strength minoxidil
is a topical vasodilator designed to actively promote hair growth in the localised areas where it is applied.
Men who are genetically-predisposed to pattern baldness are sensitive to the testosterone by-product, DHT. Once this sensitivity becomes active - which can happen any time following puberty - men will experience follicular miniaturisation as the DHT binds to the prone follicles, causing them to produce increasing weaker and gradually thinning hair and/or a receding hairline
. It is an inevitable, natural function of their DNA, and one that baking soda is unable to address.
Says Belgravia’s senior hair loss specialist Leonora Doclis
: “Baking soda is often used as a household cleaning product as it can help to remove grime but there is not science at all behind it in relation to treating male pattern baldness. We have had clients tell us they were advised - never by a reputable, medical source - to use it as a shampoo so this may be where the myth started. It is not advisable, however, after all shampoo cleanses the scalp perfectly well without stripping it of necessary oils and how many shampoos contain baking soda…? Baking soda is ineffective as a hair loss treatment and cannot get to the underlying cause of the condition so it is best to stick to shampoo and clinically-proven treatments