How to Apply Minoxidil Hair Loss Spray

Written by
The Manual Team
Medically approved by
Dr Earim Chaudry
Last updated
7th January 2022

In 30 seconds…

Minoxidil, effective for the treatment of hair loss in 60% of men, needs to be applied twice a day. And if it’s your hair loss treatment of choice, there’s probably a question you’re hoping to have answered: How to apply the Minoxidil spray?
Luckily, since the eighties, clinicians have been working to make Minoxidil as easy as possible to use. Simply ensure your hair is dry before application, avoid inhaling the spray or getting it in your eyes, and skip any missed dosages. And remember to aim for the scalp.
It might take a couple of days to perfect the technique, but Minoxidil is safe and effective — and the best results come with the correct application.

Minoxidil is one of the most popular treatments for hair loss in men. Encouraging regrowth in over 60% of those who use it — and accompanied by a very low risk of side effects — Minoxidil is recognised to be both effective and safe.

But how to use Minoxidil? It’s a legitimate question, and, in this article, we’ll provide the answer. 

Once sold in the form of a solution, and then as a foam, these days the spray is recognised as the easiest means of application. Why? We explain below, alongside the tips and techniques you need to know to apply Minoxidil and achieve the best results.

How Does Minoxidil Work?

Along with Finasteride, Minoxidil is one of the safest and most effective treatments for hair loss in men. Back in the day, the drug’s hair-boosting capabilities were discovered during its trial as a treatment for high blood pressure, when patients exposed to the drug started sprouting hair in unexpected places.

Minoxidil works as a vasodilator, meaning that it expands blood vessels to encourage greater blood flow to the area on which it’s applied. Given that male pattern baldness (or MPB) is caused by the miniaturisation (the shrinkage and weakening) of hair follicles on your scalp, this process is handy. With more blood comes more nutrients and oxygen, which encourages the health of those follicles and ultimately reverses the shrinkage.

The important point here is that it is your scalp — rather than your hair — which needs to receive the Minoxidil spray, so remember this when applying it. And don’t worry if you notice that you are shedding hair at first: it will grow back. This can go on for the first 2-4 weeks of use.

This happens because Minoxidil resets your hair’s growth cycle. Before the “growth” phase, your follicles rest and, during this time, hair often falls out. This is a sign that the medicine is working and you will see regrowth soon.

How to Apply Minoxidil for the Best Results

Learning how to use Minoxidil won’t prove too much of a challenge. However, you might need a few goes before you get the knack of it. Applying a solution to your scalp in the mirror is not the most natural of positions, so some practice may be required.

To help, here are some tips for most effectively applying Minoxidil:

Aim for the Scalp

As mentioned, the first thing to remember when applying Minoxidil is to aim for the scalp, not the hair. This is where your follicles are, and it’s the follicles that will benefit from the treatment.

To ensure that you hit the spot, separate your hair into different sections (five or six, for example) so that the scalp becomes visible. By spraying directly onto the skin, you will minimise any wasted spray that doesn’t reach the place it should.

Ensuring your hair is dry before applying the solution will help this too. Wet hair will dilute the solution and prevent the precision that you’re looking for.

Avoid Drippage

One of the main problems that the spray applicator solves is that of drippage. Many men found that while using the solution, the treatment would drip onto the face, forehead, and neck, thus increasing the risk of Minoxidil’s side effects.

With the spray, this is much less likely. The mist spray is absorbed much more quickly by the skin, meaning that there is less overspill and application is much more precise.

However, drips are still possible. So, when applying Minoxidil to the hairline, keep your head tilted backwards, as this will avoid the solution from coming into contact with your face and eyes.

Time Your Dosages

Minoxidil is designed to be used twice daily, ideally at twelve-hour intervals. It is best, however, to use the treatment at least an hour before you go to bed in the evening as this will prevent the solution from rubbing off onto your pillow before it has been properly absorbed.

Avoid the temptation to use Minoxidil more often than this. It will not improve or speed up results — but it may increase the chances of experiencing side effects.

Finally, if you realise that you’ve missed a dose, skip it. Do not take a double dose to make up for it or squeeze in an extra application. Again, this will increase the chances of side effects.

Wash Your Hands Thoroughly

The purpose of the Minoxidil spray is that your hands do not need to come into contact with the treatment’s active agent, as you can more precisely apply it vs the traditional solution or foam.

Even when using the spray, ensure that you wash your hands thoroughly after application. This will ensure that you don’t absorb the drug in an area where it is not needed, and it will prevent you from unwittingly ingesting Minoxidil if it remains on your hands.

The treatment is designed for your scalp, so keep it there as much as possible.

Keep It Up

Minoxidil is not a medication that works overnight. It will take time to encourage your hair follicles to return to health.

One of the most important things to note when learning how to use Minoxidil, therefore, is that patience and consistency are crucial. Studies suggest that results are best seen after four months, with another observing that significant results were observed after six months.

With consistent Minoxidil use, chances are that you’ll see results in the long term.

The Minoxidil Plan

Just two spray applications per day

The most powerful spray for direct treatment to the scalp. Just two spray applications a day.

Best for
Thinning at the crown
Daily Spray (Minoxidil)

Key Takeaways

Applying Minoxidil correctly will ensure you achieve the treatment’s best possible results while reducing your chances of side effects too. Remember to aim for the scalp and avoid drips as much as possible.

Finally, be consistent and don’t lose hope. Minoxidil is not an immediate fix, but it is effective and you will see hair regrowth soon.


  1. Regaine for Men Extra Strength Scalp Solution 5% w/v Cutaneous Solution:

  2. Elise A OlsenDavid WhitingWilma BergfeldJeffrey MillerMaria HordinskyRita WanserPaul ZhangBruce Kohut (2007). A multicenter, randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial of a novel formulation of 5% minoxidil topical foam versus placebo in the treatment of androgenetic alopecia in men:

  3. Example Drug Facts Label for Minoxidil Topical Solution 2% for Men and Women:

  4. Yunes PanahiMohsen TaghizadehEisa Tahmasbpour MarzonyAmirhossein Sahebkar (2015). Rosemary oil vs minoxidil 2% for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia: a randomized comparative trial:

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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