What will happen to your hair if you stop using minoxidil (rogaine)? Will you lose all hair improvements? Learn more about stopping minoxidil here.
Trying out Minoxidil for hair loss is easy enough to start. After all, it is the active ingredient inside one of the most well-known medications for hair loss -- Rogaine.
Minoxidil, and its brand name medication Rogaine, are also available over-the-counter, making getting started on the medication as easy as tossing a bottle of the stuff into your cart while browsing through your local drug store.
However, once you have used Minoxidil (Rogaine) for a decent amount of time and you reap some (or a lot) of its hair thickening and growth-promoting benefits, what is the next step? Can you just stop the medication and go about your life with your freshly boosted locks? Not exactly.
Minoxidil should be considered a long-term medication in that if you stop using it altogether, any benefits it has had on your hair will likely regress over time.
Below, we will explain just how Minoxidil helps with hair loss and thinning, what can happen if you stop using Minoxidil, why Minoxidil benefits are not permanent, and what to do if you miss a dose or two during your treatment.
The exact mechanism behind how Minoxidil helps with hair loss and thinning is not fully understood yet. But, we know a few things.
Minoxidil helps the vessels dilate on the areas where it is applied. In fact, Minoxidil was initially used for high blood pressure because of this ability to widen blood vessels and allow easier blood flow.
It is thought that this increase in blood flow to the scalp area (along with nutrients and oxygen) helps improve the health and growth of hair follicles.
Additionally, we know that Minoxidil has a positive effect on the growth cycle of the hair. Namely, it helps nudge non-growing hairs in the resting phase (Telogen) into the shedding phase to make way for new hairs to grow in during the growth phase (Anagen).
And, once the new hairs are in the anagen growth phase, Minoxidil may help that phase last longer than usual.
Because of this nudging of stagnant hairs into the shedding phase, some users experience some degree of initial shedding while the follicles prepare to bring in new growing hairs.
This shouldn’t be anything to worry about and is considered a normal part of starting on Minoxidil.
But, if your shedding phase has been going on for over 4 months into treatment, it may be a good idea to ask your doctor about it.
Minoxidil does work on some level for the majority of users, but will not be a good fit for everyone.
If you stop using Minoxidil altogether, your hair will revert back to how it was pre-treatment in most instances. This is especially true if you are using Minoxidil to help treat male pattern hair loss or female pattern hair loss.
The extra blood flow to the scalp that your follicles have been enjoying will settle back down to normal blood flow levels, your resting hair phases may lengthen, and the growth phases may shorten again.
According to the Rogaine FAQs, you should expect to lose any newly regrown hair in 3-4 months after discontinuing treatment.
If you accidentally miss a day or two of your Minoxidil treatment, you shouldn’t be too worried about it.
Missing a dose here or there will likely not derail your entire treatment process.
There is no need to double up on doses or try to take doses within hours of each other to catch up, just wait until your next scheduled dose and try to not miss any more.
While missing a dose or two should be that big of a deal, in order to get the best possible results from treatment, try to stay as consistent with your treatments as possible.
Here at Strut, we offer Minoxidil containing topical medications formulated for men’s and women’s hair loss.
Minoxidil is a great medication to help boost hair growth and thickness, but it doesn’t take care of the root cause of male and female pattern hair loss -- DHT.
DHT is a hormone which is naturally produced enzymatically from some of the testosterone in your body, and it can shrink and damage hair follicles over time.
Finasteride, Dutasteride, and Spironolactone are DHT reducing medications. And, it has been found that hair loss treatment efforts can be amplified by combining Minoxidil along with DHT-reducing medications.
If you are interested in seeing if a topical Minoxidil + Finasteride, Dutasteride, or Spironolactone medication is the right combination hair loss product for you, you can have a free online questionnaire and image-based telemedicine consultation in 10-15 minutes.
If our prescription topical hair loss agents are a good fit for you, your medication will be shipped to your front door with our free shipping.