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1) Minoxidil and Hairstyling / 2) Biotin vs MSM

M

Matt88

member
Hi everyone, hope you're well.

I underwent my hair transplant at The Hair Dr last week and, in consultation with Dr Arshad, it was recommended that both daily Finasteride 1mg and twice daily Minoxidil would be of benefit to me (I was NW4 with diffuse thinning on top), so that's how I'll proceed as I really want to get the most from this HT.

With that in mind, I wanted to gauge others' experiences with Minoxidil and how they style their hair. I'm traditionally into having a dry, matte finish. However, I'm wondering if Minoxidil would likely interfere with this, i.e. by leaving a sheen. From what I understand, you can get a foam version or an oil version of Minoxidil. I was wondering if people have thoughts on either in the context of styling.

Another question regarding hair maintenance is Biotin vs MSM supplements. Apologies if this one's been answered elsewhere already. I have ordered some Biotin today, but seem to have also spiralled down the rabbit hole of other supplements. So, I was wondering if anyone has a preference between Biotin and MSM.

Thanks very much for your thoughts in advance,
Matt
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Hi Matt.
I've used everything you mention so I'll answer with how it was for me

Minoxidil is in a liquid form. I began using the 5% strength bottles that I purchased from Minoxidil UK. It was recommended to use it twice daily so that's what I did. I found. It was easy to apply but took around 20 - 30 minutes to dry. Once dry my hair felt and looked greasy. I applied it in the morning and an hour before going to bed. Each morning I would wash my hair before applying it. After a few months of usage, it began to irritate my scalp quite badly. I could not resist the urge to scratch. I got very bad dandruff, the flakes of skin were 4 times the size of regular dandruff that you see on people. I cut it down to applying it only at night with no success. The irritation was still there. I would use Nizoral shampoo 3 times a week, that did not clear it up either. I had to cease using it. My scalp recovered quite quickly.

Rogaine/Regaine foam. 4 months or so after stopping Minoxidil liquid I decided I'd try the foam. I started with one application in the morning. I found it very easy to apply. It driven in minutes and left my hair looking normal. You can sort of style your hair with it because of the similarities it has with a hair mousse. After 3 - 4 weeks, the irritation returned. I had to stop using it.

Choosing between the two I'd have to say the foam was easier to apply and if I were able to use one of these it would definitely be the foam. The foam is double the price though.

Biotin is a form of vitamin B. It helps with the metabolism of fatty acids, amino acids and glucose in your body. It's generally thought of as being good for your skin plus it's claimed that it helps your hair and nails grow faster. There is no scientific proof to say actually works. It all comes from patient feedback. I try it every so often if I happen to come across it on sale. I can't say I've noticed it improve my hair but that's not to say you won't see an improvement in yours.

Msm. I've used this product many times over the years. I do think it improved my hair growth by making it grow faster. Its main ingredient is sulfur. It helps the protein that makes up the foundation of your hair, skin, and nails. So it's very similar to biotin.

Either biotin or Msm is worth trying. I think they would be more beneficial to someone who does not eat a balanced healthy diet. Testing it on people with brittle hair would be good. This way we could see if it strengthened it. They don't cost much and no harm will be done by trying them.
 
M

Matt88

member
Thank you very much for this detailed answer, Bigmac. You've pretty much answered it for me re Minoxidil. I'm not really into the greasy look, so Rogaine it is. I'll take the financial hit on this one. Sorry you ended up having side effects from both.

Is Rogaine the only item of its kind on the UK market, out of curiosity? It's the only one I've seen when looking at hairloss products, but wondered if there was something else like it.

The Biotin vs MSM seems slightly less clear. I'll start on the Biotin (£20 for a year's supply really isn't much) and see what happens. Somebody mentioned acne if the dose is too high, so that'll be something to look out for.

Thank you again very much,
Matt
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
Hi Matt.
Luckily for me, Finasteride has maintained my hair so it`s not so bad that I got sides from Minoxidil. I do recall I got some headaches and sometimes a racing heartbeat but with it being so long ago I`ve forgotten about it.
I`ve read about Acne and Biotin which you can deviate your dosage to suit.
I had a quick look around at Regaine foam. Regaine is a UK brand whereas in the US it`s called Rogaine.
Prices seem to be around 40 pounds for 3 months supply which is 3 cans.
However, there is a Minoxidil brand that`s cheaper. I`ve never used it because it was not available when I was using the foam. You will have to research the companies who supply it to make sure they`re legit. The internet is full of scams, unfortunately.
Here is a link to a site that supplies it. I`ve never used this site before.

 
M

Matt88

member
Hi Bigmac, thanks for your help here. As long as one of the two main meds works for you, then I guess that's what's most important. I'll have to watch out for the fast heartbeat/headaches.

Thanks for the heads-up about Kirkland Minoxidil - it is £10 cheaper than Regaine over a 6-month period and I suppose does the exact same thing. I guess it's harder to know how legit the dispenser is. What a minefield this is - makes you think it's worth just buying Regaine to save the uncertainty.

Thank you,
Matt
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
They look legit. There are a few people who sell it on eBay. Maybe you could buy a single can for under 10 pounds including delivery so you can try it and see if you like it.

Yes, I`m happy with my Finasteride. Some who get the headaches just tough it out until they get used to it but still worth noting it happens.
 
M

Matt88

member
You're right, I could try it out from eBay and see what happens. Thanks for drawing my attention to that. I suppose it might take a few months to start experiencing the sides?

I feel like I'm going from 0-100 with hairloss meds and my body won't know what's hit it .
 
Bigmac

Bigmac

Administrator
Staff member
It is information overload.
In my opinion Finasteride is the main one to start with, Minoxidil/foam can be added at a later date if you feel the need.
My situation was slightly different to yours. I'd had 2 unsuccessful strip transplants late 90s, then an FUE transplant early 2005 which yielded poor growth. It was about 5 months after my FUE that I knew enough about Proscar/Finasteride to give it a go. Then 12 months after my FUE is when I dabbled with Minoxidil and Regaine.
I used it in the hope of growing back my hair because of my failed transplants. It was another 3 years of research before I began my repair surgeries.
I expext your transplant to be a success. That combined with Finasteride should suffice. If you do use Regaine and decide in 12 months you are happy with your HT result you may decide to stop the Regaine. Any gains you make with the Regaine will then fade away. I'm just letting you know potentially what may happen. It is food for thought.
 
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