Confusing Hair Loss Treatments
If you go to see your dermatologist about your hair loss, you probably come back with a prescription for Propecia (or other form of finasteride), advice to try Rogaine (minoxidil) and, where appropriate, with a basic introductory knowledge to hair transplantation. Some doctors may also recommend other things but the choices are limited. However, there are thousands of hair loss products sold as hair cosmetics out there, most of them of natural origin, that are supposed to thicken your hair, with all of them claiming to be a result of many years of medical research. And each one of them is associated with the name of some medical doctor to give the product more credibility. But why are the doctors selling hair loss products telling you things you have never heard from your dermatologist? The reason for the difference in opinions lies in the industry's regulation. In every civilised country of the world, the medical profession and the pharmaceutical industry are strictly regulated. For instance, all approved drugs have to pass a clinical test to demonstrate their safety and efficacy. If you do not adhere to the rules of the industry, you can be excluded. Discipline helps ensure consumer safety.
The cosmetics field, on the other hand, is in most countries underregulated. This gives the manufacturers and marketers of dubious hair cosmetics the freedom to use their imagination. As long as their products do not hurt anybody, nothing will happen to them for not delivering on their promises. This allows many of them to bundle minoxidil in a package containing herbal extracts enriched with several vitamins and minerals and sell it for an outrageous price, with the promise of guaranteed hair growth. And the choice is yours whether you want to pay the money and be a guinea pig or not. Practising dermatologists do not have this choice. They cannot use you as their guinea pig.
But why do the manufacturers of hair loss cosmetics not try to have their products approved as pharmaceuticals by the national health supervisory authorities, and get their products listed with dermatologists? This would ensure their product guaranteed support and greatly boost its sales volumes. Dermatologists would gladly include a newly-approved remedy on their short list of hair loss treatment options. The financial costs and the time needed to have such treatments approved are not the only reasons for not having this done. The main reason is the effectiveness of such treatments. Admittedly, in some cases it is impossible to reformulate cosmetics to have them approved as pharmaceuticals. But more often than that the true reason is they just do not work well enough or do not work at all.
The aim of this website is not to discourage you from experimenting with alternative hair loss treatments. The ambition is to equip you with the basic knowledge of hair loss treatment options and encourage your own research. You are advised to try proven medicinal treatments first, allow them enough time to get to work and only then start experimenting with more speculative products that might or might not provide additional benefit. However, for those who would like to see a fast and dramatic improvement on the top and front of their head, hair transplantation is the only currently available option.