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How to Regrow Hair: 7 Routes to Regrowth

Medically approved by
Dr Earim Chaudry
Last updated
17th September 2021

In 30 seconds…

Hair loss can be upsetting and stressful, but there are many ways to treat it. The most effective treatment for Male Pattern Baldness is a combination of Minoxidil and Finasteride, which when used together are up to 95% effective. Other causes of hair loss require alternative treatments.

The Routes to Hair Regrowth

Hair loss can be frustrating, upsetting, and sometimes downright scary — particularly if you don’t understand what’s happening and why. For many men, your hair can be a big part of who you are and it can be hard to see that go. 

While it’s tough, though, hair loss doesn’t have to be inevitable. These days, there are lots of effective methods to combat hair loss and, yes, to even regrow the hair that you’ve lost.

So, how to regrow hair? Here, we’re looking at some options. An important note, however: your journey to new hair growth will depend on the exact cause of your hair loss.

Why Is My Hair Falling Out?

There are many different causes of hair loss. But the good news is that most of them are treatable — although treatment varies from cause to cause. As a man, the chances are that you’re experiencing something called androgenetic alopecia — otherwise known as male pattern baldness.

  • Male pattern baldness (MPB). By a long distance, this is the most common cause of hair loss in men. According to the American Hair Loss Association, over 95% of hair loss cases in men are caused by MPB. It’s the result of a hormone known as dihydrotestosterone or DHT.

    In most men, the hair follicles on the scalp are sensitive to this hormone and it causes them to weaken, shrink, and ultimately stop producing hair. This happens in a ‘pattern’ that usually starts from the hairline and crown and leaves only a strip of hair around the back and side of the head.
  • Stress. Stress-caused hair loss is technically known as telogen effluvium. Rather than a hormonal cause, it’s the result of your hair follicles going into shock and stopping the production of hair. In these cases, you’re likely to see your hair thin all over the scalp and not in the pattern of MPB.
  • Poor diet and vitamin deficiency. In some cases, you can lose hair due to a poor diet. Vitamin deficiencies can cause hair loss — namely Vitamin B12, Vitamin A, Iron, and Selenium.
  • Medical conditions. Hair loss can also be caused by auto-immune diseases, such as alopecia areata, in which hair can fall out in patches. Conditions including folliculitis and traction alopecia — involving continual strain on the hair follicle, usually from pulling — can cause hair loss, too.

How to Regrow Hair: Some Strategies

Luckily, there are options out there for treating hair loss and encouraging regrowth. These include boosting your overall health and reducing stress. Some natural supplements can also be effective.

And what’s the best way to regrow hair for those with male pattern baldness? Let’s take a look.

Treating Male Pattern Baldness

As the most common cause of hair loss in men, it’s most likely that your balding is down to male pattern hair loss. Though it’s a natural part of aging, it’s not inevitable. When looking to regrow hair, there are 3 highly effective ways to succeed:

  • Finasteride. A medical treatment that tackles the underlying cause of male hair loss: DHT. Finasteride (often sold under the name Propecia) intervenes in the process that produces DHT. That way, it reduces the amount of the hormone in your system and enables your hair follicles to recover. Of all the ways to regrow hair, it is the most effective, with 90% of men seeing results after long-term use.
  • Minoxidil (Regaine). Another proven treatment for male pattern hair loss, Minoxidil promotes the health of your hair follicles by promoting circulation to the scalp. This way, your follicles receive all the nutrients they need. How effective is Minoxidil for hair regrowth? Studies have shown that two-thirds of men see results.
  • Combined treatment. There’s one way to improve the results of both Finasteride and Minoxidil. Using them together. Studies have shown that combined treatment encourages hair regrowth in 95% of cases. It makes for an incredibly effective route back to healthy natural hair.

Other Routes to Regrowing Hair

  • A balanced diet. It won’t help all by itself. However, ensuring that you have the right amount of vitamins and minerals in your diet can help to support healthy hair in the long term.
  • Natural supplements. Not all of these do what they say on the tin. But, studies suggest that green tea, saw palmetto, and pumpkin seed oil may help boost hair growth in some circumstances:
    • Green tea contains the chemical compound known as ECGC. This has been found to support hair growth.
    • Pumpkin seed oil. Applied topically, the oil from pumpkin seeds has been found to improve hair coverage by 40%. However, more studies are needed before this can be confirmed.
    • Saw palmetto. One of the better-known home remedies, saw palmetto is an extract from an American palm tree. Among its supposed health benefits is hair growth — and studies suggest it is effective.
    • Others? Rosemary oil, aloe vera, and ginseng have all been credited with supporting hair growth. They might work for you. However, the scientific proof is sparse.
  • Hair Care products. You might have heard of certain hair care products that help support the growth of new hair. While not all of them are reliable, those that contain the nutrients and natural substances shown by science to be effective in fighting baldness can help. Look for saw palmetto, biotin, and caffeine when purchasing a hair loss shampoo or conditioner.
  • Reduce stress. If you think that your hair loss is down to stress, it can help to find ways to relax and manage your emotions. Meditation, exercise, and mindfulness techniques are often beneficial.

A Note on Other Types of Hair Loss

While the medical treatment options we mentioned here can be great for male pattern hair loss, they are not likely to be effective for other types of hair loss, such as those associated with an auto-immune disease or other medical conditions.

For those types of hair loss accompanied by lesions, scars, a rash, or broken skin, seek medical advice from a dermatologist. In these cases, you mustn’t use medical hair loss treatments designed for MPB. Broken skin may allow these products to more easily enter your bloodstream and that increases the chance of side effects.

Key Takeaways

How to regrow hair? With so many options out there to boost hair regrowth, you don’t need to accept hair loss as a done deal. For those with male pattern baldness, the best route to regrowth is with Finasteride and Minoxidil, the two treatments scientifically proven to combat hair loss.

For other types of hair loss (if your hair is falling out in patches, for example, or if it’s accompanied by broken skin) talk to your doctor or dermatologist. They’ll be able to help you find a solution.

FAQs

Why am I going bald?

Most men will see signs of hair loss at some stage in life, and the most common cause of this is Male Pattern Baldness: a genetic condition which is a natural part of aging. Other causes of hair loss include stress, bad diet or unhealthy lifestyle (excessive drinking or smoking), vitamin deficiency or various medical conditions.

Is there a cure for baldness?

Unfortunately, there is no cure for baldness, hair loss, or Male Pattern Balding. However, there are several incredibly effective treatment and alternatives, such as using a combination of Finasteride and Minoxidil, or considering investing in a hair transplant.

What is the best medication for Male Pattern Baldness and hair loss?

The best proven treatment for hair loss and balding is a combination treatment of Finasteride and Minoxidil.

What natural treatments are there for hair loss?

If you’d rather go down the natural route, then the best treatments for hair loss include: reducing stress, exercising more, cutting down your alcohol intake, quitting smoking, getting all the vitamins you need, maintaining a healthy and balanced diet, and using natural supplements like green tea, saw palmetto, and pumpkin seed oil.

References

  1. American Hair Loss Association – Men’s Hair Loss: https://www.americanhairloss.org/men_hair_loss/introduction.html

  2. medicines.org.uk – Finasteride 1 mg Film-coated Tablets: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/6044/smpc#gref

  3. medicines.org.uk – Regaine for Men Extra Strength Scalp Solution 5% w/v Cutaneous Solution: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/5765/smpc#gref

  4. Ruiming HuFeng XuYouyu ShengSisi QiYumei HanYing MiaoWenlong RuiQinping Yang (2015). Combined treatment with oral finasteride and topical minoxidil in male androgenetic alopecia: a randomized and comparative study in Chinese patients – https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/dth.12246

  5. Shanghun Shin, Karam Kim, Myung Joo Lee, Jeongju Lee, Sungjin Choi, Kyung-Suk Kim, Jung-Min Ko, Hyunjoo Han, Su Young Kim, Hae Jeong Youn, Kyu Joong Ahn, In-Sook An, Sungkwan An, and Hwa Jun Cha (2016). Epigallocatechin Gallate-Mediated Alteration of the MicroRNA Expression Profile in 5α-Dihydrotestosterone-Treated Human Dermal Papilla Cells: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4884709/

     

  6. Young Hye Cho, Sang Yeoup Lee, Dong Wook Jeong, Eun Jung Choi,  Yun Jin Kim, Jeong Gyu Lee,  Yu Hyeon Yi,  Hyeong Soo Cha (2014). Effect of Pumpkin Seed Oil on Hair Growth in Men with Androgenetic Alopecia: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4017725/

While we've ensured that everything you read on the Health Centre is medically reviewed and approved, information presented here is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It should never be relied upon for specific medical advice. If you have any questions or concerns, please talk to your doctor.

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