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Pete Scott, MD Written by Matilda H. Updated on 20 Jun 2024
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41 Hair Loss Treatments

Pete Scott, MD

This text was written according to the highest scientific standards and reviewed by medical experts. Find out more about our quality assurance.

Written by Matilda H. Updated on 20 Jun 2024

Are you looking for a “miracle treatment” to stop your hair loss? Then you have come to the right place. Hair loss remedies are a dime a dozen – from natural remedies to medications and surgical procedures. We have compiled a list of remedies that is as COMPLETE as possible.

We present each remedy briefly, clarify objectively whether it is suitable and tell you how much it costs. Let’s venture into the jungle of hair loss remedies with a drawn machete!

Natural home remedies

Natural household remedies are cheap alternatives to conventional medicines and are a part of naturopathy. The following household remedies are believed to help with hair loss in some cases:

1. Pumpkin seed oil

Pumpkin seed oil can inhibit the conversion of testosterone to DHT and therefore help prevent hair loss. This was proven in a Korean study from 2014 with men suffering from androgenetic hair loss. In the study, the participants were given 400 ml of pumpkin seed oil orally every day for six months. When compared to the placebo group, the hair density increased by 40 percent. Eight to twelve ounces of pumpkin seed oil generally costs between 10-15 USD.

2. Aloe vera

The versatile, medicinal plant Aloe Vera can also help with hair loss. The alkaline effect and beta-sitosterol promote blood circulation in the scalp and a balanced PH. This should help stimulate hair growth. Aloe Vera can be bought as juice or gel in many drugstores, grocery stores or pharmacies. The medicinal plant is applied to the scalp, massaged in and then left to absorb for several hours. Aloe vera gel costs, on average, between 10-20 USD for eight to twelve ounces of product.

Most common prescribed hair loss treatments3. Ginkgo

Although ginkgo is actually known for its positive effect on memory, it can also help with hair loss. Ginkgo promotes blood circulation and thus prevents a nutrient deficiency in the hair. Ginkgo is applied to the affected area as a serum against hair loss. The ginkgo extract or serum costs 30 USD for a bottle of 4 Fl Oz, making it one of the most expensive household remedies.

4. Green tea

Drinking tea and stopping your hair loss? The tanning agents in green tea have an anti-inflammatory effect and are also said to stop hair loss. Green tea has many antioxidants and is therefore considered a catcher of “free radicals”. Whether green tea really helps with hair loss has not been scientifically proven. Green tea tends to cost between 0.15 to 0.50 USD per individual packet and it is usually sold in packages of 20-40 packets.

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5. Argan oil

Argan oil is good for the skin and hair. The ingredients carotenoids, polyphenols and vitamin E are not only supposed to have an antioxidant effect, but also stop hair loss. The unsaturated fatty acids in argan oil are especially responsible for this effect. The oil is massaged into the scalp and then washed out. Argan oil costs between 3.25-4.00 USD per fluid ounce.

6. Coconut oil

Coconut oil contains lauric acids, which stimulate blood circulation and thus, improve hair growth. The oil can also help repair thin hair with the fatty acids it contains. Coconut oil is massaged in similarly to Argan oil on the scalp. Pure coconut oil costs roughly 0.50 to 1.00 USD per fl oz, however there are other options to purchase it in combination with other oils for your hair that are closer to 2.50 USD per fl oz.

7. Nettles

Nettles are associated with rather unpleasant memories. This makes it all the more surprising that this weed is said to help with hair loss. Nettles are rich in minerals and vitamins, such as potassium, iron and vitamin B. The seeds of the plant contain phytoestrogens, which inhibit the enzyme 5a-reductase that is responsible for hair loss. The remedy is applied as a hair tonic once a day. Nettle oil extract is another expensive home remedy, costing roughly 3.50 to 4.00 USD per fl oz.

Hair loss symptoms

 8. Monk pepper (Vitex agnus-castus)

Monk’s pepper contains plant hormones, known as phytohormones, and can help balance the hormone levels in your body.The medicinal plant is mainly taken to regulate the menstrual cycle, but positive effects on hair growth have also been reported. Monk’s pepper is taken as a tablet. These tablets, more commonly referred to as vitex or vitex berry extracts, cost 10 to 20 USD for a bottle of 60 pills.

9. Fenugreek

The seeds of the fenugreek plant contain important nutrients for hair growth, such as vitamin C, vitamin B and iron. Fenugreek should therefore strengthen the hair and improve its density. Fenugreek can be taken in tablet form. Fenugreek tablets are one of the most affordable hair loss remedies with a bottle of 100 pills only costing 5 USD.

10. Castor oil

Castor oil is extracted from the Ricinus communis plant, or the castor bean plant. The oil is said to work wonders for hair loss. Castor oil is rich in omega-9 fatty acids, which nourish, strengthen and stimulate hair growth. The oil is applied directly to the affected area. There is quite a bit of variance in castor oil prices depending on if you purchase a bottle that is marketed as a hair treatment or a generic bottle of castor oil. The ingredients don’t vary as much so it would be wise to purchase the generic bottle which costs about 1 to 2 USD per fl oz. Castor oil which is marketed as a hair treatment has an average cost of 4 to 7 USD per fl oz.

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11. Biotin tablets

Biotin, also known as vitamin H or B7, is an important vitamin for skin and hair and can help with hair loss. The vitamin is an important component of the protein keratin. Nails, hair and skin are made of keratin and therefore need biotin for keratin production. A biotin deficiency can lead to hair loss. Symptoms of a deficiency include muscle pain and loss of appetite. Biotin can either be absorbed naturally through nuts, spinach or oatmeal, or it can be supplied by tablets from the drugstore or pharmacy. There is a wide range in the prices of biotin pills which can be as cheap as 8 USD or as expensive as 20 USD for a bottle of 120 pills.

12. Zinc

Zinc is important for collagen production. The structural protein collagen anchors the hair root in the skin. A zinc deficiency can therefore lead to hair loss. Circular hair loss (Alopecia Areata) is known to be more aggressive when there is also a zinc deficiency. In most cases, the normal zinc requirement is fulfilled by an individual’s diet, e.g., with Brazil nuts, lentils or meat and fish. In addition, various zinc vitamins can help. Generic bottles of zinc pills cost approximately 10 to 12 USD for a bottle of 60.

13. Saw palmetto

The natives of North America used the fruits of the tropical dwarf palm for healthy hair and an improved appearance of their skin. Saw palmetto extract inhibits the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase and thus blocks the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT). High DHT levels lead to hair loss. Saw palmetto oil is available in any drugstore or pharmacy and is applied to the affected area in the form of a shampoo or extract.  Saw palmetto extract is another expensive home remedy, costing roughly 8 to 14 USD per fl oz.

14. Sulforaphane

Sulforaphane is a component of broccoli, horseradish and rucola and is said to lower DHT levels and thus, it promotes hair growth. This was also confirmed with the result of a Japanese study according to which sulforaphane produces the enzyme 3-alpha-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase, which breaks down DHT levels. For a bottle of 60 sulforaphane pills the average cost is between 25 to 35 USD, although there are several cheaper or more expensive options available.

Conclusion: Natural home remedies

Although natural household remedies are cheap, widely available and rarely cause harmful side effects, their effectiveness against hair loss has not been scientifically proven in most cases.

Beauty care products

15. Caffeine shampoo

Shampoos for hair loss can be found in every drugstore. According to the packaging, they are intended to provide a quick remedy and the largest category in terms of revenue in the Hair Care Industry according to our latest statistics. The shampoos contain caffeine, which should stimulate hair growth. Whether caffeine is really the miracle treatment in the fight against hair loss has not yet been confirmed by scientific research. One thing is certain however, caffeine shampoos are cheaper than other methods and are widely available.

16. Alpecin

The most well-known caffeine shampoo is Alpecin. According to the manufacturer Dr. Wolff, the shampoo is intended to stop hereditary hair loss by prolonging the growth phases of the hair roots. In addition, Alpecin is said to help with scalp problems. Whether Alpecin really helps treat hair loss is controversial. Alpecin costs about 10 USD for an 8.5 fl oz bottle.

17. Ketoconazole shampoo

Ketoconazole shampoo is another type of caffeine shampoo however, it was originally developed to treat eczema rather than hair loss. It was later reported that the shampoo was also beneficial in treating hereditary hair loss, though there is not sufficient scientific evidence to support this claim. There are side effects such as skin irritation, increased acne, taste disorders, and eye irritation associated with this shampoo. These side effects prompted many countries to create legislation requiring companies to sell the shampoo as a medicinal product which requires a prescription rather than a cosmetic product. It generally costs around 15 USD for a 7-ounce bottle.

18. 2% Pyrithione Zinc Shampoo

Pyrithione zinc is an active ingredient in many anti-dandruff shampoos, it is used to remove dead skin cells from the scalp. If the cause of hair loss is a buildup of dead skin inhibiting the growth of new hair, then this shampoo can be considered useful. However, if the cause of hair loss is hereditary then this treatment will have no effect on the regrowth of hair. An 8 oz bottle of this shampoo costs between 14 and 20 USD.

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19. Nioxin

Nioxin shampoo consists of the active ingredient’s caffeine, niacinamide and panthenol and is said to stimulate hair growth and prevent breakage. It is recommended to cancer patients who seek to prevent as much hair loss as possible while undergoing chemotherapy. As with other caffeine shampoos, the effect has not been sufficiently researched.  Nioxin cleansing shampoo costs about 30 USD for a 17-ounce bottle.

20. Thiocyn Hair Serum

The Thiocyn hair serum was developed using knowledge of thiocyanate. Thiocyanate is a molecule found naturally within the body and it is believed to help increase hair density. In addition to thiocyanate, the hair care product also contains arginine and panthenol. The hair serum is applied to the scalp once a day with an applicator. Although the effectiveness of Thiocyn has been partly proven in a study, the active ingredient only works when hair is still present. The Thiocyn hair serum is sold for approximately 30 USD a bottle.

21. Trichosense

The topical hair care product Trichosense consists of melatonin, ginkgo and biotin. The effect has not yet been confirmed. The product is applied to the scalp as a solution before bedtime. A monthly package costs about 36 USD.

Conclusion: Beauty care products

Beauty care products, such as shampoos and serums against hair loss, often promise an instant, nearly “magical” cure. The results are often sobering in reality. Not surprisingly, the effectiveness of many of these products has not been supported in scientific research (especially by clinical trials). However, there are usually no side effects to these forms of treatment so it isn’t harmful to try them for yourself.


22. Minoxidil

Originally, the drug minoxidil was developed as a remedy for high blood pressure. However, various studies found that minoxidil also stimulates hair growth and prevents the progression of hair loss. The active ingredient is applied locally as a foam or solution to the desired area. Although it’s effectiveness has been proven in many different studies, scientists are unsure of how it prevents hair loss. However, it is suspected that the effect is due in part to increased blood circulation in the scalp. The drug minoxidil costs approximately 1.21 USD per dose.

How do minoxidil and finasteride work?

23. Rogaine

Rogaine (also known as Regaine) is one of the most well-known minoxidil-based drugs and is produced by the pharmaceutical manufacturer Johnson & Johnson. According to the advertisement, Regaine is said to prevent hair loss and in some cases, it can even stimulate hair growth. The results of a one-year observational study of 11,000 individuals showed that 92% of patients showed a reduction in hair loss, with roughly 30% showing an improvement in hair growth as well. Independent medical guidelines also confirm the effectiveness of minoxidil.  However, minoxidil does not have a lasting effect, if a patient discontinues the use of minoxidil the progression of hair loss will resume within three months. Therefore, minoxidil-based products must be applied to the scalp consistently. A three-month pack of Regaine costs 109 USD, or 1.20 USD per day. The cost of this treatment can add up quickly and after several decades of use one will have spent thousands of dollars on this product.

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24. Finasteride

Finasteride was also used at first to treat other symptoms. However, reports began to accumulate that the drug also helped stop hair loss. In various studies it was proven that finasteride is a “5-alpha reductase inhibitor”. That is, a drug that inhibits the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and thus, can stop hormone-induced hair loss. One of the most well-known users is Donald Trump, who still has full hair despite his old age. However, some users experience a sexual dysfunction as a side effect (and in rare cases also mental issues).

25. Propecia and Proscar

The Propecia product from the manufacturer Merck & Co. contains 1mg of finasteride. Propecia is taken orally as a tablet once a day. As with all other finasteride- or minoxidil-based products, Propecia works only during the treatment period. Propecia is not effective or recommended for women with hair loss. The drug is available only by prescription and costs about 2 USD per tablet in a monthly package.

The pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. also sells a drug for the treatment of benign prostate enlargement under the brand name Proscar. For roughly the same price of Propecia, the patient receives tablets with a dosage of 5mg finasteride. For this reason, many individuals suffering from hair loss can be prescribed the cheaper prostate medication Proscar and quarter the tablets. An alternative is topical finasteride.

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26. Trent, Actavis, TopFond and Finpecia

Merck & Co. held the patent for finasteride tablets until October of 2014. The patent expired in the same year and enabled other pharmaceutical companies to produce generic finasteride. These generic drugs include the brands Trent, Actavis, TopFond and Finpecia. Generic finasteride tablets contain the same active ingredient but are usually much cheaper than Propecia and Proscar.

27. Dutasteride

Dutasteride is another form of 5-alpha reductase inhibitor which block the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT), the hormone linked to androgenetic hair loss. It is very similar to finasteride and was originally intended to treat the symptoms of an enlarged prostate. Although dutasteride could be effective in treating hair loss, scientific research has not proven this. Dutasteride costs around 21 USD for a supply of 30 tablets and is to be taken once a day.

28. Pantostin

The preparation Pantostin from the manufacturer Merz contains the active substance Alfatradiol and can be used for both men and women. Alfatradiol is comparable to finasteride, as this active ingredient also inhibits the formation of dihydrotestosterone (DHT). The product is applied locally to the affected area once a day. A three-month package costs just under 48 USD. The effect of Pantostin or Alfatradiol is controversial and not sufficiently scientifically proven.

29. Ell-Cranell

Ell-Cranell also contains the active ingredient Alfatradiol.. Like Pantostin, Ell-Cranell is applied to the scalp. One vial of Ell-Cranell costs about 20 USD and lasts for a treatment period of three months.

30. Priorin

Priorin from the manufacturer Bayer consists of the minerals and vitamins L-cystine, millet extract, wheat germ oil and pantothenic acid. The medicine is supposed to help with hair loss caused by nutrient or vitamin deficiency.  For normal androgenetic hair loss, the use of Priorin is not helpful. Priorin costs roughly 30 USD for a supply of 60 pills, to be taken once in the morning and once in the evening.

31. Pantovigar

Pantovigar contains almost the same exact ingredients as Priorin, but it is produced by the manufacturer Merz. Additionally, Pantovigar consists of medical yeast and keratin. Like Priorin, the treatment is recommended to improve hair loss caused by a nutrient or vitamin deficiency and has not proven helpful in cases of androgenetic hair loss. The price of this medication is also comparable to the cost of Priorin.

Conclusion: Drugs

The two drugs finasteride and minoxidil are among the few scientifically recognized effective treatments for hair loss. In the majority of cases, these drugs have proven their ability to stop the progression of androgenetic alopecia. They have also shown effectiveness in stimulating hair growth for a smaller percentage of patients. However, side effects can occur and only existing hair can be saved, they will not regrow hair in areas that have gone bald.

Therapies / Non-surgical interventions

32. Topical Immunotherapy

Topical immunotherapy is one of the most successful treatments for alopecia areata, or circular hair loss. During the therapy, local sensitization with allergens (usually diphenylcyprone, DPC for short) is performed on the bald and round parts of the scalp. This means that a controlled allergic reaction is produced, which should stimulate hair growth again. The benefits of the therapy have been scientifically proven and the success rate is about 50 percent. However, topical immunotherapy is not useful for androgenetic hair loss.

33. Mesotherapy

In mesotherapy, a high-dose vitamin solution is injected into balding areas. The “revitalizing cocktail” is intended to strengthen the hair roots and promote blood circulation. Mesotherapy is a hair loss treatment method without significant side effects. It combines orthodox medicine with naturopathy and Asian acupuncture. The effectiveness of the therapy has not been scientifically supported and is quite controversial. Many cosmetic surgeons offer mesotherapy. The treatment costs about 180 USD per session. A full treatment consists of three to six sessions.

34. PRP platelet-rich plasma

PRP stands for “platelet-rich plasma”. In a PRP hair loss therapy, the patient’s own blood is taken, and then processed so that the red blood cells separate from the plasma. The concentrated plasma (PRP) is now injected directly at the hair roots. The PRP stimulates the hair roots and promotes the regeneration of cells at the root of the hair.  An Italian study by the University of Padua confirmed the positive effect of PRP on hair loss in 2014. A PRP hair root treatment costs between 600 and 2,400 USD.

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35. Low level laser therapy

Modern lasers are not only used to remove tattoos or birthmarks, but also as a remedy for hair loss. With the help of a low-level diode laser, which irradiates the scalp in the infrared wave range for about 15 minutes, hair growth is stimulated. The treatment takes place over a period of one year and is performed twice a month. One session costs about 72 USD. The effect of such lasers has not yet been confirmed through scientific research.

36. Micro hair pigmentation (MHP)

Scalp micropigmentation has become increasingly popular in recent years. With this method, hair growth is not stimulated, but small pigmentations are applied to the scalp. This creates the optical illusion of greater hair density. This method has several advantages including, no surgical intervention being necessary and the pigmentation is cheaper than hair transplantation. Of course, micro hair pigmentation also has disadvantages e.g., the method is only suitable for dark hair and the effect fades after a few years. This method generally costs between 1,200 and 6,000 USD depending on the clinic and amount of pigmentation needed.

37. Dermarollers

Dermarollers are believed to stimulate hair growth when rolled along the scalp by increasing blood flow. There are some reports that when a dermaroller is used in combination with minoxidil the benefits are significantly greater than when minoxidil is used by itself. Dermarollers can cost between 8 to 25 USD depending on the brand and size of the roller.

Conclusion: Therapies

Many therapies against hair loss have not been fully researched in terms of effectiveness and side effects. According to a recent study, many hair loss experts hope that stem cell therapy in particular will lead to a breakthrough in hair medicine but this therapy is still several years away from being widely used.

Hair Loss Research Treatments (not-FDA approved yet)

38. JAK inhibitors

Professor Angela Christiano, a geneticist at Columbia University has sparked the interest in JAK inhibitors as a method of treating androgenetic alopecia. They have shown a positive effect in stopping the progression of hair loss. Many pharmaceutical companies have been researching the effects of the inhibitors in clinical trials but there are still many years of studies which need to performed before the FDA will approve the treatment.

39. Stem cells and 3D printing

The use of stem cell hait transplant in conjecture with 3D printing is believed to be the next major breakthrough in hair transplantation. One of the major issues with hair transplantation is that replacement hair must come from a donor area on the patient’s head. This limits the amount of hair that can be replaced and also thinning the hair in the donor area. Stem cells would be able to provide a new source of hair however, 3D printing must also be used to replicate hair follicles to direct the stem cells growth. There are still issues with finding a way to get the stem cells to grow in with the patient’s original color or texture.

40. Tissue engineered hair follicles (hair cloning)

Scientists and doctors are hopeful that in the coming years current research in biometric engineering will allow them to grow hair follicles from cultured human cells. The cells would act as a scaffold for new hair follicles to mimic the nature of native hairs. This would help solve many problems for patients who do not have enough donor hair to receive a full hair transplantation.

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Surgical interventions

41. Hair transplantation

Between 2014 and 2016, the number of hair transplants in Europe almost doubled from 45,000 patients to almost 80,000 people. One of the main reasons are the reduced hair transplant costs, due to offers from abroad (especially cheap hair transplants in Turkey). According to our recent hair transplant statistics the majority of medihair users are willing to go abroad for a hair transplant. The operation is therefore no longer reserved only for celebrities, such as Wayne Rooney or Elon Musk, but has become an accessible option for the majority of people.

Emotional impact of a hair transplant on a patient

With hair transplantation, the patient’s own hair is taken from a donor area and re-inserted at the desired location. The transplanted hair is resistant to DHT, the androgen responsible for genetic hair loss (androgenetic alopecia). As a result, the hair does not fall out again making hair transplantation a permanent solution for hair loss. The two most common hair transplant methods are FUT , FUE and DHI.

Even though hair transplants have become more affordable in recent years, the cost of the operation is still quite high and can act as a deterrent at first. However, hair transplantation is often still worthwhile in the long run, because hair transplantation has a lasting effect. As with many hair loss remedies, improvements are only promised while the treatment is continued, leading to a higher cost than hair transplantation over time.

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There are plenty of remedies that are supposedly beneficial for hair loss, but only a few of them have proven to be an effective treatment method. According to our hair loss statistics the most common prescribed treatment is finasteride (66,4%).

The drugs minoxidil and finasteride are the only medications that have been proven to have a powerful effect on halting the progression of hair loss and stimulating the growth of existing hair. However, the side effects of minoxidil or finasteride should not be neglected, these include symptoms such as tachycardia or sexual dysfunction. Furthermore, an effect can only be expected while taking the drug, and the treatment can become expensive in the long run.

For this reason, hair transplantation is in many cases, especially with androgenetic hair loss, the only sensible solution, as the operation is permanent and fewer harmful side effects than minoxidil or finasteride.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Does anything really regrow hair?

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Which home remedies are best for hair loss?



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