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An in-depth look at Minoxidil, hair loss treatments for women and balding men. Pictures of results, info on its longevity and more.  Please read this full page before deciding to buy minoxidil.

Time Tested...baldy approved

In 1988, Pharmacia & Upjohn Company introduced the first FDA-approved product proven to regrow hair. Since 1996, in light of their excellent safety profile, Rogaine Regular Strength for Men and Rogaine for Women have been sold as over-the-counter (non prescription) drugs. Rogaine extra strength is now sold over the counter as well.  It is a clear solution you apply to the top of your scalp where hair is thinning.

Rogaine is available as a pre-mixed product created by Upjohn, but you can very easily obtain the active ingredients in generic versions of this product.  We have made this accessible for you at the bottom of this page.

What exactly is it?

Minoxidil in its 2% form has been approved for use in both Men and Women, however the 5% mixture has just recently been approved for over the counter distribution, but is only for use in Men.  Minoxidil is an ingredient which works to stimulate the hair follicles into growth.  It is safe to say that the 5% version is the strongest regrowth product available over the counter, while the 2% is something you may wish to start with if you're just starting to experience balding.

Once again it is important to pace yourself with hair loss treatments.  As with any treatment, you run the risk of it losing its effectiveness over time, so start light, see if it works, then increase to 5% if you are not seeing the results you want.

Pros and Cons

If you're like most people, the big question is "Where do I start?"  Trying to decide the answer to this question is one of the toughest because starting something means a major commitment.  So the two major players are Propecia and Minox.  Here are some benefits of Minox over Propecia:

  • You can buy Minoxidil without Prescription, whereas Propecia requires one
  • Minox works locally, and since it is a topical, its systemic (internal) effects are minimal, whereas Propecia directly alters the Male Hormonal system.
  • Minox in its 2% form is safe for use in both Men *and* Women, whereas Propecia is only for use in Men

Propecia and Minoxidil, the Ultimate Combination

If you are looking to kick start some regrowth, and maintain what you have, but either have had no success on Propecia or Rogaine alone, combining them is a sure way to almost guarantee yourself some results.  

The following fellow used Minox and Propecia together for a year or so....

Want proof?  Just take a look at Jon Ross's pictures:

Before Propecia & Minox


After Propecia & Minox


Email Jon at res03hsp@gte.net
You can also view his full Bio here: Jon Ross

Using both in conjunction is probably the most effective known treatment to date for best regrowth.  Why?  Well, listen as one of our users - Mike Leake [maleake@aol.com] explains the plusses and minuses of Minox alone and in conjunction with a therapy like Propecia:

"Since part of the problem with hair thinning appears to be a Nitric Oxide deficit due to vascular damage, anything that works on a hormonal level (Propecia) is unlikely to substitute for those agents that supply Nitroxides (Minox). In the past, many have tried dumping minox in favor of just sticking with other agents they were also using that worked on a hormonal level. They invariably regret it a few months later when all the minoxidil-stimulated and minox-dependent shedding.

Minox stimulates hair to grow, of course, by non-hormonal methods. Minox and other Nitroxides are therefore able to stimulate hair that would remain unstimulated by hormone modulation alone (Propecia). This is obvious from the chemicals involved, but also from those who start out with Propecia and get some results, but get even more results when they use Minox in addition.

Thus, when you remove that Nitric Oxide (NO) crutch, regardless how successful the hormonal modulation you may also be doing, you lose those hairs that were stimulated into activity by something that pinch-hit for the missing NO. 

Since MPB is multifactorial, it only makes sense that if you take care of just one of the factors you will have less than 100% success. It's like someone who can't walk because he's got a broken leg and crippling arthritis, too. Mend the broken bone and you still have a problem."

What are the downsides of Minox?

  • Since it is a topical solution, you must apply it daily once or twice a day.  This can mean greater inconvenience for you and fitting into your lifestyle.

Possible Side Effects

  • Mild scalp irritation
  • Infrequently people have experienced low blood pressure or an increase in heart rate at the time of application.


How long will it last?

Results vary from person to person.  There were, however, a couple studies which evaluated men who had used topical Minox in the 2% and 3% form for 5 years.  These studies show some very good information on the lasting effectiveness of Minox over time.  Some feel that they show a decrease in effectiveness, whereas others feel it shows its long term ability to fight off impending doom.  Keeping in mind that the absence of treatment will most assuredly mean a continued dramatic balding, and discontinued regrowth, seeing how well Minox fended off this effect for such a long time could indeed be an argument for its staying power.  Are you a half full or half empty kind of person?  Read the studies and decide for yourself! 

Keep in mind, this was not the well known 5% form of Minoxidil, nor were they using any other treatments at the time.  You have the luxury of combining effective treatments to further increase your chances of regrowth.  Both are available below in PDF format.  You must have Acrobat Reader to view the files - which is also available below.

Please note:
  The file may appear blurry when viewing.  Simply go up to "View" and choose "Actual Size" when it appears.  This will clear it up.


Minox 2% Five Year
Study Results

 Get Adobe Acrobat Reader


Minox 2% Four Year
Study Results

hair loss Minoxidil 5 year study PDF
( 2 Minutes at 56k )

hair loss Minoxidil 4 year study PDF
( 30 seconds at 56k )

Click Here to view one of our user's Assessments of the above studies

The moral of the story is that you need to pace yourself.  Some of these treatments won't last forever, but if used effectively, you can theoretically extend their results for 5, 10, even 15 years.  Dumping everything on your head day 1 runs you the risk of seeing a tolerance after 5 years for *EVERYTHING* and leaves you with no options for other alternatives.  See what works, give it 6 months, if it does then use it until it stops working.  If it doesn't, slowly add things one by one, starting with the most well known effective treatments.

What Kind of Results Can I Expect?

As with any regimen, your own persistence and patience are the two most important factors in seeing success.  The process of losing hair takes time, so it is logical to understand that reversing the process will time as well.  Many men take over 20 years to lose their hair, so keep this in mind when starting any regimen.  

With Minox, there is a lot of work it needs to start doing on your scalp before you will see any sort of beneficial results.  If you have already begun to lose your hair, there is a long process of follicle deterioration that has already occurred, and the repair of that - bringing you back to ground zero - is going to take some time.  The timeline for Minox is similar to that of Propecia:

  • Month 1 - 2:  You may see an increase in shedding during this time period.  Do not worry - this most likely means the treatment is working.  What is happening, is that you will have stimulated a new growth cycle to begin, and this is going to push out some of the deteriorating follicles to make way for the newer, stronger ones.

  • Month 3 - 9:  This is the period where you may art to see some results.  Your first hairs may be small, thin, and lightly pigmented.  Over time these hairs will cycle through their growth phases and each time come in stronger longer, and darker.  This response time may take up to a year to occur, depending on the person.

  • After 1 Year:  You will have gotten ahold of your hair loss problem.  You either will be experiencing new growth, or seeing a significant slowing or stoppage of your balding.

Is this just another Snake Oil?

No.  Minoxidil has been approved by the FDA as a Proven effective to stop hair loss and for hair regrowth.


Where can I buy minoxidil?



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