It is estimated that around 25% of men will experience hair loss as early as their 20s. The rate of hair loss increases as you get older; by their 50s, around 85% of men will have experienced hair loss of some form.

While it may seem like hair loss is inevitable, that isn’t the case. There are treatments available that can help you keep the hair you have; one such treatment is minoxidil.

What is Minoxidil?

Minoxidil is the generic version of Regaine that comes in oral solution or foam. Topical minoxidil foam and 2% solution are used to stop and reverse hereditary pattern hair loss in men and women. This medication belongs to a drug class called vasodilators.

Minoxidil works by increasing the blood flow supply to the hair follicles. This encourages the flow of nutrients to the hair follicle, strengthening the existing hairs and stimulating hair growth. In some cases, this can cause hair regrowth – if you catch the follicles in a resting phase before they die off, you may see some new hair growth. However, this is not guaranteed.

There are four main ways minoxidil treatment can reverse the hair loss process:

  1. Reversing the shrinking of hair follicles
  2. Increasing the blood flow in blood vessels around the hair follicles
  3. Stimulating the follicles movement to the growth phase of the hair cycle
  4. Extending each follicle’s growth phase

Regaine needs to be used regularly for at least four months to notice the beneficial effects. There are no concerns about using the medication continuously long term. However, if there is no improvement in your hair after 4-6 months, you may be better served by visiting your GP to find an alternative solution.


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Who Can Use Minoxidil?

Minoxidil can be a very useful treatment, but it is not suited for everyone. Minoxidil should be avoided if:

  • You are under 18 or over 65
  • You have high blood pressure
  • Your hair loss is caused by another medical condition or medication side effects
  • The cause of your hair loss is unexplained
  • You have a scalp condition such as sunburn or eczema
  • You need to wear a bandage or dressing on your scalp

For more information about who shouldn’t use minoxidil, please check the Patient Information Leaflet of your chosen treatment.

How to Use Minoxidil

It is important to use the medication as directed. Before applying a dose of minoxidil to your scalp, make sure to clean and dry the area properly. You can apply the medication to damp hair as well, if you prefer.

If you are using the solution, use around 20 drops of the solution and apply it evenly to the affected area where the hair is thinning. Once applied, rub the solution into the scalp followed by allowing it to dry completely before styling it or sleeping.

If you are using the foam, make sure to clean and dry your hands thoroughly. Apply ½ a capful of the foam to the scalp and rub it in. For the foam, make sure to let it dry completely before doing anything else to your hair or going to bed.

If you notice some irritation to the scalp after treating hair, give your scalp some rest for a few days or avoid using it with other chemical solutions like hair dyes.

Minoxidil Side Effects

Since minoxidil is a topical medication, you might notice burning, stinging or redness around the application site. This is a fairly common side effect, and normally goes away quickly once your body is used to the treatment. If it does not subside after 3-7 days of use, you should seek advice from your pharmacist or doctor.

In some cases, you might find excessive hair growth outside the area of the scalp – as the solution is rinsed off, it can reach other areas, leading to exposure. While this may not be as noticeable for some men, this can be more difficult for women using this treatment.

If you experience these side effects, your doctor may recommend you switch to oral minoxidil tablets.

In rare cases, this medication can cause side effects such as chest pains, shortness of breath, dizziness, irregular heart beat, swelling of the hands and feet and fainting. If you experience any of these side effects, stop using this treatment and speak to your doctor for medical advice.

It is very rare for minoxidil or Regaine to cause a moderate-severe allergic reaction in users. However, if you notice facial swelling, difficulty breathing, rash, and severe dizziness, stop the treatment and seek urgent medical attention.

Please read the Patient Information Leaflet for more information on possible side effects.


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Minoxidil and Finasteride

There are a number of alternative hair loss treatments you can try. Here at Simple Online Pharmacy, we also supply finasteride (and the branded version, Propecia). Finasteride prevents the body from turning testosterone into DHT, the hormone which causes androgenetic alopecia (male pattern baldness). These two treatments can be combined, using the anti-DHT properties of finasteride and the vasodilator effects of minoxidil together to give you the best possible chance of keeping the hair you have.

Where to Order Minoxidil in the UK

Hair loss treatments for men like Regaine For Men can be found at Simple Online Pharmacy. You can order minoxidil after filling in an online assessment, which will be reviewed by a healthcare professional before the prescription is released. If there are no concerns about medical conditions or drug interactions, your order will be issued and we will post the medication straight to your doorstep.


  • Minoxidil is a topical treatment for hair loss, sold under the brand name Regaine
  • Minoxidil provides more blood flow to your hair follicles, allowing them to get more nutrients
  • You can use both minoxidil and finasteride at the same time to get the best chance of keeping the hair you have.