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5 Best Hair Loss Shampoo For 2019
Last Updated on
Hair loss is a serious issue affecting millions of men and women. Close to half of all men and women will experience some form of pattern hair loss by the age of 50. (1)
Hair is a matter of self-identity and self-confidence for both sexes. The state of one's hair can make or break a date, a job interview, and many other situations. Hair loss is such an important issue that the market is completely saturated with supposed miracle cures. The sad truth is, many of these hair loss treatments don’t work at all. Others barely live up to their over-hyped claims.
We’ve decided to fight back against this misinformation and compile a carefully researched and curated list of the best hair loss shampoos on the market for 2019.
Before we reveal the five best hair loss shampoos, we'll delve into some background about why hair loss occurs and how conventional treatments work to address the problem.
Why Does Hair Loss Occur?
With hair being so central to your appearance, it’s only natural that losing your hair can have a dramatic effect on your confidence and self-esteem.
Hair loss in both males and females has different causes.
For women under the age of 50, the problem is nutritional. A lack of iron often causes hair to shed at a higher rate than average.
For men, the problem is mostly genetic and affects men of all ages. The American Hair Loss Association points out that 66% of American males will suffer some noticeable degree of hair loss by the age of 35 (4).
Male-pattern baldness is associated with a gene that encodes androgen proteins. These proteins help hair follicles grow (2). Male pattern baldness is caused by an increase in DHT (Di-Hydro Testosterone), a by-product of testosterone (5).
- Testosterone enters the cells of hair follicles through androgen receptors. This testosterone undergoes reactions via an enzyme called 5-alpha reductase and produces DHT.
- DHT is a byproduct associated with thinning and loss of hair.
- When DHT interacts with the hair follicle cells at the DNA level, hair loss genes are activated. This process leads to male pattern baldness (androgenic alopecia).
Once this process has taken place, hair production slows down. Any hair that produced becomes thinner and more delicate. Ultimately, hair production comes to a complete halt, and hair follicles die completely.
Do Most Hair Loss Shampoos Work?
The honest answer is “No,” but do not become disheartened!
Once you understand the scrupulous business practices of many hair loss shampoo companies, you can identify products that are preying on your fear and trying to make a quick buck. With this knowledge, you will know what to look for in products that do offer a solution to your hair loss struggles.
Look for products with:
- A solid reputation
- Claims backed up with scientific studies
- Active ingredients that are known to help arrest hair loss
- Verified reviews that appear legitimate
5 Effective Ingredients in Hair Loss Shampoos That Actually Work
Now we will review some of the ingredients you should look for when you’re hunting for a legitimate hair loss shampoo.
However, it is important to note that hair loss can have many underlying causes. You should always consider shampoo as just one method of combating hair loss. Don’t overlook the importance of making nutritional and lifestyle changes and taking advice and guidance from your health care provider.
The following ingredients have been clinically shown to help with hair loss:
- Saw Palmetto
Research has shown that biotin and zinc deficiency can lead to hair loss (6).
Biotin, also known as vitamin B7, is a compound vital for many bodily processes. Biotin not only plays a role in hair loss, but it also strengthens nails and synthesizes fatty acids, amino acids, and glucose. Your skin cells are critical to the overall health of your hair follicles because weak or unhealthy skin cells won't be able to retain hair.
Biotin is naturally available in a range of food sources – from liver, eggs, and peanuts to cauliflower, bananas, and whole grains. Try supplementing your levels of biotin from these foods while also looking for its presence in your hair loss treatment of choice.
Caffeine has been shown to counteract how testosterone/DHT suppresses the production of hair follicles in males. (7)
Caffeine acts in several ways to achieve this:
- Prolongs anagen duration
- Enhances the length of hair shafts
- Stimulates keratinocyte
The last of these effects is particularly valuable. Keratinocytes are the most profuse cells in the outer layer of skin - the epidermis.
However, if you think you can sidestep hair loss shampoos and go straight to drinking expresso instead; it does not work that way. You would need to guzzle a minimum of 50 cups of coffee a day to achieve the benefits of caffeine extract present in hair loss products. (8).
When consumed as a liquid, the body rapidly dilutes and excretes the majority of the caffeine. When applied topically in a shampoo or cream, the caffeine extract bypasses the digestive tract and is absorbed directly into the skin/hair shaft. Furthermore, hair follicles do not build up any resistance to caffeine. Thankfully topical administration is an option, since drinking 50 or more cups of coffees a day would be ruinous for your health!
Green tea is rich in flavonoids and polyphenols. Flavonoids, in particular, give green tea powerful antioxidant qualities (10).
Aside from these antioxidant properties, green tea also helps with hair loss. Green tea:
- Improves circulation of hormones while also enhancing blood flow (11)
- Reduces production of testosterone and also interferes with its conversion to DHT (12)
- Contains a potent antioxidant calledEGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate) (13)
Several studies in the US and Japan have shown that ECG inhibits the enzyme (5 alpha reductase) that converts testosterone into DHT.
A pilot study with KTZ has shown it could be a promising weapon against male pattern baldness. (14)
Early studies have shown KTZ may offer the following benefits:
- Improves hair density
- Enhances the size and ratio of anagen follicles
Treats Pityriasis, a fungus that invades the scalp
Many studies have shown that minoxidil can be highly effective in some cases of hair loss. (15)
Formerly and famously branded and sold as Rogaine, minoxidil has been used to combat hair loss for more than 30 years.
While conceived and produced initially to treat male pattern baldness, other types of hair loss can also benefit from topical treatment with minoxidil, including hair loss in women.
However, minoxidil is not effective for everyone. If this treatment does not work or minimize your hair loss in six months, it most likely will not work. Discontinue use and discuss other options with your healthcare provider.
Native Americans have been using saw palmetto as medicine and embracing its benefits for centuries, but what does this have to do with hair loss?
Saw palmetto berry extract also blocks the 5-alpha-reductase enzyme responsible for the conversion of testosterone into DHT. One study showed more than half of male subjects saw a significant increase in hair count after being treated with saw palmetto. (16)
A Complete Hair Loss Shampoo Checklist
When you're looking to invest your hard-earned money into any hair loss treatment, there are a few factors to bear in mind.
- Look for Clinically Studied Ingredients
- Use Products Exactly and Only as Directed
- Consider Overall Value and Quality Rather Than Price Alone
- Think About the Guarantee
This step is the most crucial element of your buying decision. We've backed up all of the information and suggestions made today with links to clinical studies. It’s imperative you look for similar evidence when considering a hair loss shampoo.
If you’re aware of the ingredients generally considered effective – see directly above – and you see these ingredients on the shampoo label, you’ll be confident that your product is based on some scientific validity. Products with such ingredients have not been dreamed up by a marketing department intent on selling you a product that does not work.
So, check those ingredients carefully. We cannot emphasize this point strongly enough.
All hair loss shampoos will come with comprehensive but straightforward instructions for best practices in the product's application.
Unfortunately, many consumers treat these instructions as rough guidelines and use too much product. Consumers think that using more product will have a proportionally more significant effect; however, that is not how it works.
An excessive amount of product does not yield better results; in fact, you may potentially damage your hair. Not to mention, you'll also end up wasting your money. While a proper hair loss treatment should be considered an investment in your self-esteem and appearance, that investment will produce a poor return if you don’t follow the instructions.
Remember this: Less is more.
Too many people obsess purely over the bottom line when making any buying decision; hair loss shampoos are no different.
We suggest you focus on the price/performance ratio instead and think about the value you’ll gain from the product. Sometimes, it’s worth paying a little more if that gives you the scientifically-tested ingredients essential for a successful shampoo.
Remember the adage: Buy cheap, buy twice.
To be abundantly clear, this is not an incentive to spend more than you can afford. Instead, it's a suggestion to buy the best you can afford.
In general, the strength of any product’s warranty indicates the confidence placed in the product by the manufacturer.
Many of the legitimate hair loss treatments come with a money-back guarantee. However, we will give you a simple tip and piece of advice:
If you are not satisfied with results from your shampoo and call in a refund, it’s highly likely that customer service will attempt to convince you to keep trying. They will suggest that you have not used the product for the proper duration.
This situation may or may not be accurate.
However, if you have decided you want a refund, getting reimbursed is usually no problem. Stick to your guns if that’s the decision you’ve made. Always do what is right for you and use the money-back guarantee (if available) to your advantage.
Don’t Rely Too Much on Amazon Reviews
With that checklist in place, there’s another point you should bear very firmly in mind when you’re hunting for the best hair loss shampoo. Blindly trusting reviews or taking them entirely at face value can give you a misleading view of any product.
Reading honest user reviews is a guaranteed method of gaining valuable feedback about hair loss products; however, the key word here is honest.
A recent study found that one-third of Amazon customers reported seeing "a lot" of fake reviews in the past year (17). This subjective data is supported by a recent study from Fakespot, which revealed that 63% of Amazon beauty product reviews are inauthentic (18).
We advise reading reviews carefully and using your judgment rather than blindly assuming the legitimacy of a review.
When you’re hoping to solve a problem as serious as hair loss, why risk everything on what could easily be a review someone was incentivized to write? Do your due diligence and rely on more substantive data than a subjective evaluation.
We've aimed to give you a rock-solid foundation upon which to base your buying decision. The better informed you are about hair loss, the higher your chance of finding the right solution for you.
So, without further ado, we'll present our curated pick of the five best hair loss shampoos on the market! Read on to see if any of the shampoos below make sense for your particular situation.
5 Best Hair Loss Shampoos 2019
- 5. Rogers NE, Avram MR. Medical treatments for male and female pattern hair loss. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2008; 59(4): 547–566.
- Causes of hair loss and the developments in hair rejuvenation.
Rushton DH1, Norris MJ, Dover R, Busuttil N.
- Finesteride: a review of its use in male pattern hair loss.
McClellan KJ1, Markham A.
- American Hair Loss Association
- Cause of Androgenic Alopecia: Crux of the Matter
Emin Tuncay Ustuner, MD
- A Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Study Evaluating the Efficacy of an Oral Supplement in Women with Self-perceived Thinning Hair
Ablon Glynis, MD, FAAD
- Differential effects of caffeine on hair shaft elongation, matrix, and outer root sheath keratinocyte proliferation, and transforming growth factor-β2/IG-like growth factor-1-mediated regulation of the hair cycle in male and female human hair follicles in vitro.
Fischer TW1, Herczeg-Lisztes E, Funk W, Zillikens D, Bíró T, Paus R.
- Effects of topical application of EGCG on testosterone-induced hair loss in a mouse model.
Kim YY, Up No S, Kim MH, Kim HS, Kang H, Kim HO, Park YM.
- Nutritional Benefits of Flavonoids
Edwin N Frankel.
- Tea and circulating estrogen levels in postmenopausal Chinese women in Singapore
Anna H. Wu Kazuko Arakawa Frank Z. Stanczyk David Van Den Berg Woon-Puay Koh Mimi C. Yu.
- Green tea polyphenols inhibit testosterone production in rat Leydig cells
Marina S Figueiroa,1 Juliany S B César Vieira, Disleide S Leite, Ruben C O Andrade Filho, Fabiano Ferreira, Patrícia S Gouveia,1 Daniel P Udrisar,1and Maria I Wanderley1
- EGCG, a green tea polyphenol, improves endothelial function and IG sensitivity, reduces blood pressure, and protects against myocardial I/R injury in SHR.
Potenza MA1, Marasciulo FL, Tarquinio M, Tiravanti E, Colantuono G, Federici A, Kim JA, Quon MJ, Montagnani M.
- Pilot Study of 15 Patients Receiving a New Treatment Regimen for Androgenic Alopecia: The Effects of Atopy on AGA
A. W. Rafi * and R. M. Katz
- Harvard Medical School, Treating female pattern hair loss
- The Evaluation of Efficacy and Safety of Topical Saw Palmetto and Trichogen Veg Complex for the Treatment of Androgenetic Alopecia in Men
- Local Consumer Review Survey 2018
- Marketing Land