How bad is getting off minoxidil really?

FirstAscent

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Hey all,

I'm pretty new to attacking hair loss. I've been taking 1g Finasteride daily for 3 months (no sides so far). I'm NW2/3 with diffuse thinning.

The newbie stack seems to always be finasteride+min, but I've watched a couple videos of guys who had horrific sheds after stopping minoxidil.

I'm aware that if someone is responding positively to minoxidil, they should basically never quit it.... but am I basically signing up for a multi-decade commitment from the very beginning of using it?

If I have a bunch of weakened follicles (diffuse thinning), could there still be some kind of long-term efficacy of using minoxidil EVEN IF we assume I'll get tired of applying minoxidil daily in a couple years? (Something related to the mechanism of action of minoxidil preventing those follicles from dying?)
 

Ausgebombt

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There is no documented case of long-term benefit from short-term minoxidil use.

However, some people who use minoxidil on their faces to grow beards think that some of their beard gains persisted even after cessation. This is an un-studied use of minoxidil so all the evidence is anecdotal.

In my experience, stopping minoxidil on the scalp will cause a pretty shocking shed 2 to 3 months after cessation. Every hair that you delayed losing will fall out within the span of a couple months. It's clear that most of the benefit of minoxidil only persists as long as it is being used. Perhaps some fraction of the benefit lasts afterwards, but due to the way scalp hair loss works every hair destined to die will eventually die unless androgens are suppressed.

My two cents: Just use the minoxidil if you want more hair. It's cheap and easy to apply. If you brush your teeth every night, you can apply minoxidil. If you get sick of using it, you will be no worse off than had you never used it at all.
 
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fatelephant

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I don't get the issue either. Minoxidil takes about 15 seconds to apply. 30 if you wash you hands well before hand (which you should).

Some guys complain that it "makes my hair look sh*t" ... well ... I'd rather that than no hair at all.

It's not an issue for me personally as I shave my head. But if it ever got thick enough that I could grow it a bit longer, and I was really concerned with how minoxidil made it look directly after application ... just don't apply it right before you go out somewhere and want to look your best. It's not a huge sacrifice.
 

FirstAscent

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There is no documented case of long-term benefit from short-term minoxidil use.

However, some people who use minoxidil on their faces to grow beards think that some of their beard gains persisted even after cessation. This is an un-studied use of minoxidil so all the evidence is anecdotal.

In my experience, stopping minoxidil on the scalp will cause a pretty shocking shed 2 to 3 months after cessation. Every hair that you delayed losing will fall out within the span of a couple months. It's clear that most of the benefit of minoxidil only persists as long as it is being used. Perhaps some fraction of the benefit lasts afterwards, but due to the way scalp hair loss works every hair destined to die will eventually die unless androgens are suppressed.

My two cents: Just use the minoxidil if you want more hair. It's cheap and easy to apply. If you brush your teeth every night, you can apply minoxidil. If you get sick of using it, you will be no worse off than had you never used it at all.

This is going to reveal my ignorance... after that "pretty shocking shed 2 to 3 months after cessation"...

Assuming we do NOT return to using minoxidil, will those shedded hairs still return to their natural anagen phase and regrow to at least the density and thickness they were pre-minoxidil?

(Let's assume the person has been doing a protocol that is successfully suppressing androgens.)
 

Ausgebombt

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Assuming we do NOT return to using minoxidil, will those shedded hairs still return to their natural anagen phase and regrow to at least the density and thickness they were pre-minoxidil?
Yes. Basically, you can't "get worse" with minoxidil. You can only return to where you would be if you never used minoxidil at all.
 

fatelephant

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oral minoxidil, don't use topical, it's a sh*t
You have to stop giving people advice dude. You look like you're 20 years old with a massive lion's mane of thick hair and severe BDD. Giving some stranger on the Internet the advice to take strong heart medication is just bananas and potentially dangerous.
 

jamesbooker1975

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No idea why, but if you stop minoxidil, not matter what other treatment you are using , you will have a massive shed and the bald areas are going to increase. But, anyway, what is the problem on appy it ? it is easy, you have lotion, with or without PG, Foam, etc . One time per day is ok. Add tretinoin if you want better results.
 

FirstAscent

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No idea why, but if you stop minoxidil, not matter what other treatment you are using , you will have a massive shed and the bald areas are going to increase. But, anyway, what is the problem on appy it ? it is easy, you have lotion, with or without PG, Foam, etc . One time per day is ok. Add tretinoin if you want better results.

This is what scares me - what do you mean exactly by "bald areas are going to increase"?
 

jamesbooker1975

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This is what scares me - what do you mean exactly by "bald areas are going to increase"?
Dude, that the zones that don't have hair will get bigger . If you are a norwood 2, you will be a norwood 3, for example . if you have a high hairline, will be higher . If you have a vertex bald, that will he bigger .
 

FirstAscent

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Dude, that the zones that don't have hair will get bigger . If you are a norwood 2, you will be a norwood 3, for example . if you have a high hairline, will be higher . If you have a vertex bald, that will he bigger .

This seems contrary to what @Ausgebombt was saying about how you can't "get worse" after quitting minoxidil compared to what your baseline was beforehand.

I'm so confused. People who were NW3 before minoxidil are not going to become NW2 with just minoxidil unless they are a hyper-responder, right? So then how could they revert to NW3 just because of quitting minoxidil?

I don't have a stance on this, I'm just trying to get to the bottom of it and there is surprisingly little information on the internet about the specific topic of what to expect after quitting minoxidil.
 

jamesbooker1975

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This seems contrary to what @Ausgebombt was saying about how you can't "get worse" after quitting minoxidil compared to what your baseline was beforehand.

I'm so confused. People who were NW3 before minoxidil are not going to become NW2 with just minoxidil unless they are a hyper-responder, right? So then how could they revert to NW3 just because of quitting minoxidil?

I don't have a stance on this, I'm just trying to get to the bottom of it and there is surprisingly little information on the internet about the specific topic of what to expect after quitting minoxidil.
Simple, quit it and you will see it by yourself.
 

iCloud

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When you quit minoxidil, you can expect to lose a lot of hair, which will make you wish you never quit.
 

Ausgebombt

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This seems contrary to what @Ausgebombt was saying about how you can't "get worse" after quitting minoxidil compared to what your baseline was beforehand.

I'm so confused. People who were NW3 before minoxidil are not going to become NW2 with just minoxidil unless they are a hyper-responder, right? So then how could they revert to NW3 just because of quitting minoxidil?

I don't have a stance on this, I'm just trying to get to the bottom of it and there is surprisingly little information on the internet about the specific topic of what to expect after quitting minoxidil.

I don't understand what you find so confusing about this. Minoxidil increases the amount of hair you have as long as you use it. When you stop using minoxidil, you will stop getting the benefit. There are no long-term consequences.

Yes, you will lose hair when you stop using it, but you won't lose so much that you end up with worse hair than had you never used minoxidil at all.
 

jamesbooker1975

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I don't understand what you find so confusing about this. Minoxidil increases the amount of hair you have as long as you use it. When you stop using minoxidil, you will stop getting the benefit. There are no long-term consequences.

Yes, you will lose hair when you stop using it, but you won't lose so much that you end up with worse hair than had you never used minoxidil at all.
Is not that way, cause if he is using Finasteride and stop the minoxidil, he will loose his hair and end up worst that if he never used Minoxidil and only used Finasteride .
 

notsohairymon

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I used minoxidil for years to have just enough hair to make concealors work if I kept the rest of my hair short. When I switched to a system last summer I obviously stopped using it especially since my system only comes off on my once or twice a month visit to the salon. After about 3 or 4 visits all the hairs that seemed to be "helped" by Rogaine were completely gone. Now I don't know if having the system on my scalp without coming off for 2-4 weeks at a time was a factor too....
 

20YearsOnFin

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I'm pretty new to attacking hair loss. I've been taking 1g Finasteride daily for 3 months (no sides so far). I'm NW2/3 with diffuse thinning.
How long have you been using minoxidil for then? (Only 3 Months aswell?)
 
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