Act Da Fool: A Creative Blend Of Film, Fashion And Philosophy

In the current world of professional entertainment, it is often that we (both the viewers, and creators) experience film and television work blending with fashion design. For instance, the star’s of the hot CW network television series, Gossip Girl are blossoming into fashion icons because of the way they wear the hottest couture in their television roles as the newest generation of Manhattan’s elite high society. However, connections between film and fashion design don’t stop there. In fact, lately they have been getting much more literal…

Recent trends show that several high-end luxury fashion lines have commissioned renowned film directors to create cinematic short films to advertise their clothing lines. For example, director Martin Scorsese has worked with the house of Chanel on short films. Additionally, director Kenneth Anger has been commissioned by Missoni for the same, and famous film auteur, David Lynch has directed shorts for both Gucci and Dior. When considering such projects, one might wonder how fashion designers have convinced such prolific directors to work on cinematic shorts that shamelessly advertise their designs. While the shorts can hardly be classified as commercials, they certainly walk a fine line between art and pure advertisement. In the budget-less world of luxury fashion, the success struggle is a race to the height of sophistication, as well as finding creative ways to advertise with a certain cool duplicity. It is to show off the clothes without being overt. It is a science. Since money is no object for both the famed designers and film directors, they work together to challenge each other in other ways. The fashion line strives to advertise in the least conventional way, and the director strives to take the superficial idea of a fashion line and derive from it his own creative vision in film. The result is a marriage in style. The literal style of a designer’s work is complimented by the director’s working style. This culmination of style is what makes these cinematic fashion shorts so powerful.

In 2010, the luxury clothing line Proenza Schouler released a short film directed by offbeat filmmaker, Harmony Korine. In the short, entitled Act Da Fool, Korine tells the story of a group of young women living in poverty, and entertaining themselves with child-like antics on the slummy streets of a town in Tennessee. All the while, the girls are dressed to the nines in Proenza Schouler’s latest designs. What is perhaps captivating about Act Da Fool is the stark contrast between the lives of the characters in the short film, and the clientele to which a high-end fashion line like Proenza Schouler is actually available to. The obvious disconnect between the world of luxury couture and the universe of hopelessness in which Act Da Fool exists must be trying to say something beyond the admiration of clothes, or the fetishism of a lifestyle of poverty. Perhaps there is a connection to be drawn between the nihilism of the life of a street kid and the nihilism of the utter excess of the fashion world. Both are fetishized, romanticized and in their own ways, useless, yet existing nevertheless.

This is the reason in which several fashion designers decide to work with famed film directors to create fashion shorts. They are looking for advertisements that say more than just, “buy my clothes!”.

Why Newspaper Advertising Can Still Beat Social Media Hands Down

With all the interest in social media, especially the big boys like Facebook, a business-owners could be forgiven for thinking that old-fashioned types of advertising like newspaper advertising and direct mail no longer work or are no longer worth doing. There are now thousands of people calling themselves “internet marketing consultants”, and these people concentrate completely on online marketing, and don’t even think about some of the other methods. This is a mistake, and for two reasons.

Why Internet Marketing Is Not a Panacea

The first reason is that many internet marketing consultants talk about the latest fads as though they’re a cure-all, when many of them are completely missing the point. Just because a certain marketing technique is popular, it doesn’t mean it’s effective, and there’s no real hard evidence that posting on Facebook or creating hundreds of tweets a day puts money into your bank account. In many cases, social media can’t be tested, and there’s no way of knowing whether you’re getting a good return on investment, or even any return on investment at all.

The second reason is that internet marketing works only when you use it along with traditional techniques of direct response advertising. That means using the AIDA principle of advertising, getting prospects to take action, and then measuring accurately the returns you get. The business which uses these techniques will tend to get a much better return on advertising spend no matter which techniques it uses. It’s a bit like driving a car. If you’re a good driver, you tend to drive well no matter which car you use. If you’re a bad driver, you tend to drive badly. The make and model of the car is irrelevant.

Direct Mail Makes Money

A case in point. Many business-owners will swear that direct mail doesn’t work, and yet one of my clients recently sent out a direct mail piece and got a whopping 1,100% return on investment. And as if that wasn’t good enough, he sent out exactly the same letter a few months later, and got something like a 700% return on investment. Not too shabby for an outdated marketing method.

In another, case a colleague regularly places ads in the local paper. The ad costs around $2,500 to run, and he gets about $25,000 worth of business from it each time the ad appears. Why? Because after taking some advice from me, he created an ad that does all the things I mentioned above. It uses direct response principles to create attention and then asks the prospect to take action. The funny thing is that the “taking action” entails visiting a website and buying something – a great example of how old-fashioned marketing methods can be integrated with modern technology to great effect.

So next time you’re tempted to think the internet has all the answers to your marketing problems, spare a thought for that piece of direct mail and its 1,100% ROI. You’ll never think of old-fashioned advertising as being “old” ever again, and you might well have found a great way to boost your profits.

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Get yourself over to my website and grab a copy of Smart Business Power Marketing, a packed report that shows you exactly how to generate leads and slash advertising costs at the same time.

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Fashion Photographer’s Guide to Snow Location Lighting

Fashion photography is a specialisation devoted to photographing clothing and other fashion items, typically for advertisements or fashion magazines. As the fashion photography genre has developed so has the style and standard of the shoots with the clothes often enhanced by exotic locations and props such as vehicles or animals for an eye catching effect.

In the studio, commercial photographers are working with a blank canvas. They are in control of every aspect of their shot, from the choice of backdrop right through to the mood and atmosphere of the lighting. On their own, studio flash units simply produce a high powered burst of artificial daylight, which can be positioned as required and modified using a wide range of accessories to control the quality of the light.

On location, things are quite different. The weather is pretty much in control of the quality of the natural lighting. Apart from planning ahead, the best the photographer can do is to react to the prevalent ambient lighting conditions and, where necessary, to modify its quality. At the most basic level, this means that dull lighting will need to be brightened, or bright lighting softened using reflectors, portable flash or, in some cases, a combination of both.

For the fashion photographer, although the model has to look good, the client is going to be looking at the quality of the lighting on his or her products – the garments. It is for photographers to use the natural lighting found at a particular location to its best advantage.

Case study: Snow scene

Shooting for an Autumn/Winter in the Alps at 4pm the sun would have normally been fairly high in the sky, but at this altitude the angle is considerably reduced. The model is positioned with the sun at around 90 degrees to the left of the camera. With no cloud cover to soften the light, shadows are well defined and hard edged. To soften this effect, I positioned my assistant to the right of the camera with a 48in reversible gold/silver Lastolite reflector to bounce some light back into the shadows. Gold reflectors are traditionally used to warm up a subject, for example by adding a golden glow to a model’s skin.

However these warm reflections are very much more pronounced in low-light shooting conditions. For very bright-light shooting situations, I believe the gold effect is noticeably reduced, but that the light produced works better for him than the harshness of the light from the sliver side of the reflector. Exposure was carefully measured from both highlight and shadow areas; with and without the reflector.

Now of course the only real way to improve your location photography, whether for fashion, advertising or editorial, is to get out there and do it. And if you’re just starting out don’t wait to get paid; with digital test shoots meaning no expensive film and development costs there’s no excuse not to be out shooting anyone who will stay still for a few minutes! I hope a couple of these tips will help you develop your location photographer skills and look forward to seeing your published work soon!

Why Fashion Advertisers Love Large Format Outdoor Posters

From the onset the fashion industry was one of the first to embrace the medium of outdoor poster advertising. Over a hundred years later, nothing has changed. Fashion advertising still accounts for a high proportion of the large format OOH advertisements we see today, displayed on posters and billboards everywhere.

Indeed, the latest trendy clothing brands are following the example of more established fashion companies and dedicating an ever-increasing portion of their advertising spend to OOH advertising.

Memorable Fashion Poster Advertising Campaigns

Who could forget Wonderbra’s Hello Boys campaign back in the 1994? The poster campaign saw model Eva Herzigova pose simply in her underwear, with the image spread across 96-sheet billboards across the country.

Another big hit was David Beckham’s iconic 2009 Armani underwear ad. From 6 sheets on the London Underground to a 6-storey giant poster on Selfridge’s in London’s Oxford Street, this campaign was a hot topic of discussion worldwide, resulting in extensive media coverage for both Golden Balls himself and the Armani brand.

As the official department store provider to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, John Lewis made a grand patriotic gesture by enveloping their flagship Oxford St stores in a huge building wrap featuring the union flag to show their support for British athletes. The exterior of the Stratford City store overlooking the Olympic park was decked with giant vinyl stickers featuring fashion accessories. The OOH display continued the gold medal theme of John Lewis’s print advertising campaign and generated considerable media coverage.

More recently, Myleene Klass’ Littlewoods campaign received much attention at the beginning of the year when it was erected on a 472m sq giant poster at Union Street in Glasgow. The super-size Littlewoods poster advertising campaign with the image of her dressed simply in a bikini was most certainly attention grabbing and was seen by nearly 750,000 shoppers and passers-by in Glasgow city centre.

Change of Emphasis

Why are more and more fashion advertisers turning away from standard advertising in print and broadcast media? Newspaper readership is rapidly declining and over-saturation of traditionally placed advertisements lacking true originality has rendering most TV advertising ineffective. The target audience automatically filters out adverts and even takes advantage of new technology to skip them on recordings of TV programmes.

Jaded consumers who are being continually bombarded with advertising messages crave novelty. The understanding is clear for fashion brands: they must cater to their audience’s desire for innovation by seeking alternative formats for distributing their brand message.

Fashion brands are willing to pay a premium for innovative forms of advertising that build genuine emotional connections with individual consumers. That is why they are so keen to take advantage of the latest developments in OOH advertising. Nothing beats well designed eye -catching fashion advertising posters for getting up close and personal with local communities.

blowUP media specialises in large-scale outdoor advertising. Using Giant Posters and digital screen advertising, their campaigns can help any company build a brand.They are experts at building brands through innovative advertising campaigns and have worked on various campaigns from travel advertising to automotive advertising.

5 Most Common Causes of Female Hair Loss and the Solutions to Maintain a Beautiful Head of Hair

Being a young women suffering from hair loss is one of the worst thing in life. A woman’s hair is the essence of her beauty, and the affects of hair loss are a crippling blow to a women’s confidence. However statistics show that only 27% of women deal with hair loss before the age of 50, that being said most women under the age of 50 will never have to go through the emotional trauma of hair loss. Unfortunately for me, I was had to deal with hair loss under the age of 50. It was very humiliating experience but some how I found a way to over come this.

Through my diligent research on the subject, now I have a head of beautiful and long hair once again. I found that the best way to fight hair loss as women is to first know the reasons for why it happened and how to deal with it. The reason for this is because we are all unique in every way and to just research on one way it can happen is not smart and it can be counter productive.

The misconception many women have when it comes to dealing with hair loss is that it has to be hereditary but this is very far from the truth. The truth is “female pattern baldness” has been linked to many other things that also can cause it, yes of course most cases are firmly linked to family history. There are so many more variables that are also linked to hair loss and in my opinion the best way for a women to combat hair loss is to look at every possibility because you’ll be surprised how easy some of the problem can be resolved without paying for ultra expensive hair transplant surgery or hair loss treatments.

The reason I am emphasizing this is because there are many hair loss treatments out there and many of these companies that produces these so called “miracle treatment” for the most part are all a bunch of swindlers in disguised. So before you go out and buy another hair loss treatment check out the 5 most common cause of female pattern baldness.

1) Stress:

Stress is one of top culprits of hair loss within women. Hair loss usually occurs 3 months after a stressful event has occurred in your life and it may take 3 months after the stress period has ended for the hair growth to resume. In most cases it is temporary if the person does not have a family history of baldness. But stress may trigger the onset of genetic hair loss or may worsen existing genetic hair loss. The solution for stress is the obvious method, it is to relax. When you feel the tension start to mount up take a breather. A very good website I recommend visiting when comes to reduction of stress is

2) Diets

Female hair loss may also occur due to dieting. Franchised diet programs, which are designed or administered under the direction of a dietician with prescribed meals, dietary supplements and vitamin ingestion, have become popular. A lot of times these diet restrict many vital vitamins, minerals and solubles intake necessary for healthy hair. One of the biggest faults many of these diets have is the dramatic reduction of a vital soluble called “fat”. Statistics have shown that insufficient consumption of fat can increase the rate of hair loss by as much as 68%.

3) Pregnancy:

Hair loss that is connected to pregnancy usually occurs after delivery. During pregnancy, an increased number of hairs go into the resting phase, which is part of the normal hair loss cycle. Post-pregnancy hair loss is a condition that can cause bald spots and even some permanent hair loss. In most cases the condition should diminish within 3-4 months after delivery. But if you feel that you are experiencing an unusual hair loss while you are pregnant, this may be due to a vitamin or mineral deficiency. The best way to deal with this is to visit you’re physician.

4) Hair beautification products:

Women often use a wide variety of different hair products on their hair. These products include hair sprays, mousse, gels, hair dyes, leave-in conditioners and a variety of hair enhancers. While each of these products advertise their numerous benefits for healthy hair, they fail to mention the consequences of over use. Many hair products can cause serious damage to the hair strands, which in turn will cause hair loss. The effect can be devastating and many times permanent. The best advice I can give you in repairing the damage that may have been done to your hair by any type of hair product is to immediately stop the use of the product. Then, the next step is to try to concentrate on hair repair. Consulting with a professional hair stylist is often the best solution, as they can examine your hair and give you the best tips on ways to strengthen hair, promote new hair growth and reduce future hair loss.

5) Hormones:

Hormonal problems is one the most common causes of female pattern baldness. An out of balance level of the female hormones such as androgen and estrogen are most commonly linked causes of hair loss within women. Another hormone is Dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is considered a male hormone but women also have a small amount that runs through their blood, some higher than others. When a female inherits hair follicles that are supersensitive to DHT, they may start to lose hair just like men do. The best way to combat this problem is to start doing more aerobic exercises. Doing aerobics is a natural and healthy way for lowering DHT production. Another way is trying a legitimate hair loss treatment but this can a very expensive proposition because I can personally testify that 90% of the hair loss product absolutely don’t work!!!!

In my experience doing as much research as possible often gives the best results. And in my opinion the best thing you can do is diagnose the problem and find a the best possible solution with your physician because in the long run it can save you more money. But if you’re situation is desperate and you know your hair loss derives from just plain genetics then go ahead and buy a good hair loss treatment that will give you the fastest and safest results. Over the years I have become some what of an expert in hair loss solutions for women and men also healthy related issues in general, in the past I have created numerous blogs informing women not just on hair related issues but a multitude of issues. So if you want to find out the best hair loss products visit a site a friend of mine has put up called [] and for more article just like this visit [] – Thank you for reading my article.

Hair Loss Remedy – Vitamins, Minerals and Natural Supplements For Hair Loss – Nurse’s Report

Hair loss is also known as alopaecia, alopecia and baldness that happens in men, women and children. Hair loss refers to the loss of hair due to an increase in the rate of hair falling out and its not being replaced by new hair growth. Seeking natural treatment is the best remedy and vitamins, minerals and other supplements may or may not be taken safely as a hair loss solution. Many of the hair loss drugs on the market today require a daily dose for a lifetime. Besides being expensive, they all come with side effects and the benefits may not outweigh the risks.

It’s important to get diagnosed and know what is causing your hair loss. If you’re an older man, chances are it may be male pattern baldness. You can also have your testosterone levels checked to see if they may be implicated. Decreasing them may not be possible though or advisable.

If the hair follicles are still alive and functioning then it may be worth a try to take some supplements that you may be missing in your diet to help stop losing your hair. Two things to remember though – a natural healthy diet of living foods (raw foods – fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds) and lots of them is the best approach; wherein you have plenty of vitamins, minerals and other phytonutrients naturally available to help you grow your hair back and return yourself to your optimum state – it’s the best hair loss diet.

Secondly, it’s not known if vitamins, minerals and other supplements work if they’re not working in conjunction with nature’s natural chemicals – those that are a part of the living foods that the vitamins and minerals are also a part of. And the quality of the supplements is important also.

Cheap supplements may not be of the best quality and may not do you any good and may do you more harm as your body needs to get rid of them.

Keeping this all in mind I’m going to list the vitamins and minerals that are reported to be the best for enhancing or stimulating hair growth, again if the hair follicles are still alive. Make sure to get advice from your hair loss doctor or naturopathic doctor before you start taking any supplements. Some supplements can be harmful if you’re taking certain drugs or medications for example.

Take the following information with a grain of salt. New studies and research come out often and any new study or report can refute what has been reported in the past.

First of all the amino acids, arginine, cysteine, lysine and tyrosine, are used in hair loss treatment.

Arginine deficiency has been reported as one reason for hair loss.

Cysteine at dosages of 1,000 mg. to 2,000 mg. per day has been reported to spur hair growth and help stop hair loss. It’s supposed to help prevent free radical damage to the hair follicles. Some reports show that cysteine causes a noticeable improvement in hair growth. Eight percent of human hair is made up of cysteine. Many people who have thin or slow growing hair have reported they’ve noticed considerable improvement in their hair growth when they used 3,000 mg. to 5,000 mg. of cysteine per day.

Lysine deficiency can result in hair loss. Lysine is often used for herpes-related infections or prevention.

Tyrosine – when hair loss is caused by a low thyroid condition, called hypothyroid, tyrosine has been known to alleviate it.

Other supplements –

Enzymes in the form of superoxide dismutase (SOD) are supposed to decrease hair loss by inhibiting superoxide free radicals on nitric oxide.

A linoleic acid deficiency may result in hair loss, research suggests.

Minerals –

The important minerals to consider are copper, iron, silicon and zinc. Minerals need to be in balance with each other. Too much of one mineral in some cases can cause an imbalance in another. Make sure to get help from an informed health professional.

Copper can help stimulate hair growth if a copper deficiency is present and is involved in the prevention and possibly treatment of hair loss. Too much copper can actually cause hair loss. I have wondered whether the copper bracelets that used to be in vogue and may still be, for arthritis, would be worth a try.

Recently there have been good studies on iron deficiency as a possible cause of hair loss. Taking iron supplements is not a good idea though. Getting iron naturally in food would be a better choice. Too much iron can cause some serious health problems.

Potassium deficiency can be a cause of hair loss it’s thought.

Silicon is supposed to be able to stimulate hair growth. Silicon is present in cucumbers among other foods.

Early or premature hair loss may be a result of zinc deficiency so says some research. Again zinc can cause hair loss.

The sulfuric compound methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) may help hair growth due to its sulfur content.

Vitamins –

Many vitamins may be involved in hair loss. Research suggests that hair loss or hair growth may be a result of deficiencies of these vitamins – biotin, folic acid, inositol and PABA (para aminobenzoic acid) and PABA may help to prevent hair loss due to its antioxidant properties.

The nicotinic acid form of vitamin B3, which is applied to the scalp, may help to improve blood circulation to the scalp (and may help stop the loss of hair) – you must have live hair follicles present. The suggested dose has been about 35 mg. of nicotinic acid daily.

Vitamin B5 deficiency causes hair loss in animals but hasn’t been proven in humans.

Vitamin C may help hair growth by improving the circulation of blood to the scalp.

Taking too much vitamin A can cause temporary and reversible hair loss it’s reported.

These are the vitamins and minerals and other supplements that have been researched, reviewed, studied or reported on in various medical journals. Before starting any hair loss treatment or remedy to help stimulate your living hair follicles and/or to prevent further loss, make sure you see your doctor first. If your hair follicles are not alive than it is unknown today what will help them short of hair transplant. Some cases of hair loss are reversed once the cause is known. Some cannot be reversed with what we know today. And be patient for whatever method you may decide to use.

Treatment For Thinning Hair (Minoxidil 5% And Aminexil Sp94 Retinol) Hair Loss Male And Female

Contains 5% Minoxidil and Aminexil SP94

1. Uses tiny micro spheres called nanosomes that are used to encapsulate the active ingredients in a lotion compound
2. Works faster and better than medications containing only Minoxidil with similar tolerability and side effects
3. Allows patients to re-grow normally thick and healthy hair
4. May work for patients who previously did not respond to Minoxidil treatment
5. Intended for both the crown of the scalp and frontal baldness (receding hairline)


MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL is the world’s most effective topical hair loss treatment designed for androgenic alopecia and other types of hair loss in men. Clinically proven to help re-grow hair, it is also significantly more effective then RogaineĀ® or any other topical hair loss treatment currently available.

Through extensive research and testing, dermatologists found that coupling retinol (a vitamin-A derived substance) with Minoxidil produced dramatically better results than just using Minoxidil alone. Retinol helps control the proper functioning of the sebaceous glands. The sebaceous glands produce sebum on the scalp. Sebum contains DHT (DHT which is produced from testosterone is the androgen thought to be most responsible for male pattern baldness), which is then reabsorbed into the hair follicles to do further damage. Proper moderation of the sebaceous glands and their production of sebum can help control skin scalp DHT levels and when combined with Minoxidil further helps prevent androgen related hair loss.

The Vitamin Complex is rich in Biotin and Mineral Salts and provides energy and accelerates the metabolism of the hair follicle. Physical and emotional stresses contribute to hair loss by causing hormonal disturbances as well as a lack of vitamins and mineral salts. In this state, the entire metabolism speeds up, activating the production of hormones, which stimulate the sebaceous glands, causing a build up of grease on the scalp, which “suffocates” the roots, weakening the hair and causing it to fall out. These factors can be the cause of hair loss and can significantly accelerate hereditary hair loss. MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL targets this problem with a unique vitamin complex from the finest raw ingredients. Ivy, Hops and Capsicum Herbal Extracts penetrate deep into the scalp next to the roots, speeding up the circulation and the nutrition of the affected tissues, recovering the weakened hair strands.

This formula promotes better circulation to the scalp, addresses damaging free radicals with potent antioxidants, helps to block DHT and fights harmful bacteria. This dramatically boosts the effectiveness of Minoxidil and Aminexil SP94 and promotes hair that is healthy and strong. DS Laboratories proprietary nanosomes act as the carrier enhancement agent. These nanosomes are about 10 times smaller then cells and penetrate deep into the epidermis and continuously release the active herbal extracts over a 12-hour period. This allows penetration deeper into the hair follicle then other carrier agent including Tretinoin or Azelaic Acid and further enhances the performance of all the ingredients in MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL.

What does MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL do ?

Like any other topical hair loss treatment such as Rogaine or Aminexil, MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL will be most effective in early stages of hair loss. However, many users who did not respond to the Rogaine or Aminexil treatment may see results with MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL including users with advanced stages of hair loss. You can also expect more pronounced and faster results (thicker fuller hair with result after just 3 months of use) then with either Rogaine or Aminexil alone.

If your hair loss is caused by hereditary factors then continued use will be required to maintain new hair growth. If you discontinue use of MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL then hair that grew under the treatment will begin to fall out over a period of 2 – 3 months. There is no “cure” for hair loss; MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL simply allows you to control hair loss.

If the cause of hair loss is related to other factors such as diet, emotional or physical stress, and hormonal changes then it is possible to completely discontinue the use of MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL and retain the newly grown hair.

What are the Active Ingredients in MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL ?

Minoxidil 5%: Clinically proven to help re-grow hair; approved by the FDA in treating male-pattern hair loss for more then 15 years.

Aminexil SP94: Clinically proven to help re-grow hair; Aminexil is a patented molecule that is the result of over 10 years of research at L’Oreal laboratories. Research has indicated that hair loss is linked to the stiffening of the hair roots and Aminexil has been specifically developed to prevent the stiffening and premature aging of the roots.)

Retinol: Has been shown to improve the absorption and effectiveness of Minoxidil; Minoxidil and Retinol is often prescribed together by dermatologists

Vitamin Complex: Accelerates the metabolism of the hair follicle.

Herbal Extracts: Provides circulation and nutrition to the affected tissues).

Nanosomes: Microscopic capsules deliver active ingredients deeper into the tissue.

Adenosinez: Powerful hair regrowth agent, similar action to Minoxidil with no side effects.

Procyanidin B-2 and C-1: Hair regrowth agent with no side effects, exceptional results when combined with minoxidil.

The addition of Adenosince and Procyanidin B-2 and C-1 is a recent innovation that further boosts the performance of MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL. Both compounds are encapsulated in our proprietary nanosomes. MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL is the only formulation in the world that delivers Adenosine and Procyanidin B-2 and C-1 in a nanosomal carrier agent. MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL works by combining the effectiveness of each of the active ingredients and simultaneously combating various causes of hair loss. This formula also enhances the action of each ingredient to grow normally strong and healthy hair which is not possible to achieve with any of the active ingredients alone. MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL produces more rapid results then Rogaine and produces effective results in users who previously did not respond to the Rogaine treatment. MINOXIDIL 5% and AMINEXIL SP94 / RETINOL can also treat hair loss on the entire scalp including the frontal areas, while RogaineĀ® (pure Minoxidil) has only been shown effective on the crown of the scalp.

Minoxidil has been tested in hundreds of clinical studies on thousands of volunteers and has been shown effective in the treatment of hair loss particularly on the vertex of the head. Minoxidil has been approved for use in treating male-pattern hair loss for more than 15 years. Clinical studies of the effects of 5% Minoxidil in treating male-pattern hair loss report that a majority of patients found: Very effective to effective results in promoting new hair growth over the period of treatment. Decreased hair loss. Minimal side effects. Results of the studies were evaluated by both patients and physicians; in one of the studies, physicians with male-pattern hair loss were included in the study population.

Aminexil is the only other clinically proven medication that has been shown to be effective in the treatment of hair loss. Research at L’Oreal laboratories has discovered that hair loss in men and women is linked to the accelerated ageing of the roots characterized by the stiffening of hair roots. This causes the roots to become rigid and compresses the blood vessels that nourish and stimulate them. The roots weaken, and the hair falls out prematurely (alopecia). In men, the stiffening of roots gradually spreads; the roots produce hair that is increasingly fine and has an ever shorter life span. Aminexil is a genuine anti-hair loss innovation and fights against the stiffening of hair roots, closely linked to their premature ageing. Thus, Aminexil preserves the vital functions of the roots and helps to reduce hair loss. Aminexil is protected by an international patent and guarantees effectiveness verified by dermatologists.

Product Ingredients:

Minoxidil 5% (Meets Ep And Usp Specifications), Aminexil Sp94, Retinol, Nanosomes, Copper Peptides, Vitamin & Mineral Complex.

Why not call 0207 976 6868 and speak to one of our Westminster Trichologists who will be happy to help and advise you.



So why not take advantage of our expertise and get the facts so that you can make an informed decision on what is best for the future of your hair today.



However, not all cases are treatable. But with early diagnosis and treatment you will give yourself and us the best possible chance to help you.

Check out our website: – Our HAIR LOSS BLOG, receives over 900 new visitors every day.

Gary Heron is one of Europe’s leading trichologists for the past 20 years dealing directly with every type of hair loss and scalp disorder for both men and women of all ages and ethnic backgrounds. Gary has had over twenty years’ experience in dealing with every type of hair or scalp problem. For example, he helps people suffering with scalp disorders such as psoriasis, seborrhoeic dermatitis, folliculitis or from hair loss and thinning caused by genetic baldness, alopecia or through chemical or physical damage.

Gary says,” Everybody will experience some degree of trouble with his or her hair or scalp at some time. However, if you are experiencing hair loss or an irritating scalp problem you do not need to just tolerate it. You can take an active step today and seek help from The Hair Centre”. All treatments products supplied are formulated especially for The Hair Centre by leading trichologists and chemists. They have undergone exhaustive clinical trials and testing to ensure we can target disorders of the hair and scalp effectively.

PCOS and Hair Loss – Natural Therapies Can Restore Scalp Hair

Excessive scalp hair loss is a severe challenge to a woman’s self image and her standing in business and society. Although we usually think of balding as a man’s problem, women actually make up forty percent of the people in North America experiencing the distress of excessive hair loss. Many women losing significant scalp hair have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Safe, effective, natural therapies that treat the hormone imbalances related to PCOS will also restore your hair to optimal health. I am delighted to offer you these indispensable tools to help you restore your hair and your health.

Women experiencing hair loss lose ground fast in today’s world. At work and in her personal life a woman’s appearance has much to do with her financial and social success. Men may also prefer not to go bald. But since balding is known to be caused by high levels of testosterone, a bald man may be credited with extra virility. There is no such happy story for balding women. The appearance of thinning scalp hair translates to a significant loss of personal power for women.

The medical community in general treats women’s hair loss as a minor health issue. Most physicians have little inclination to address the emotional distress you feel. In many cases physicians treat balding as if it were “only” a vanity issue; they may not recognize hair loss as a red flag pointing to serious metabolic conditions, including PCOS.

The psychological pain of hair loss and its effect on our sense of empowerment is as devastating as any disfiguring disease. If you are a balding woman, your hair loss is a life altering condition with profound consequences for your health. Getting your hands on the wheel and driving yourself toward a solution for hair loss is the first step toward reviving your sense of personal strength and power. If hair loss is part of PCOS, the effort you make to restore your physical health will also renew scalp hair growth.

You need expert help to properly diagnose the cause of your hair loss. Hair loss that could have been merely temporary may become permanent if you have a delayed or incorrect diagnosis. Misdiagnoses is perhaps the most frustrating aspect of hair loss for women. The information I present here will help you identify the cause of your hair loss and ideally lead you and your doctors to proper treatments for your kind of hair loss, sooner rather than later.

Alopecia is the medical term for excessive or abnormal hair loss. There are different kinds of alopecia. What all hair loss has in common, whether it’s in men or women, is that it is always a symptom of something else that’s gone wrong. Your hair will remain on your head where it belongs if hormone imbalance, disease, or some other condition is not occurring. That condition may be as simple as having a gene that makes you susceptible to male or female pattern baldness. Or it may be as complex as a whole host of diseases. Hair loss may be a symptom of a short-term event such as stress, pregnancy, or a side effect of certain medications. In these situations, hair grows back when the event has passed. Substances including hormones and medication can cause a change in the hair growth patterns. When this happens, growth and shedding occur at the same time. Once the cause is dealt with, hairs go back to their random pattern of growth and shedding, and balding stops.

Alopecia: A Common Problem

Today more women than ever are experiencing hair loss — and the causes are typically quite different that what causes balding in men. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, some 30 million women in the United States are experiencing some degree of distressing scalp hair loss. The most common causes of scalp hair loss in women can include:

Mineral or vitamin deficiency – zinc, manganese, iron, vitamin B6, biotin

Essential fatty acid deficiency from a low calorie diet or eating disorders

Protein deficiency, as is common with vegetarian diets

Anemia from a low iron diet, poor digestion or any excess blood loss

Eating disorders, like anorexia, bulimia, even ‘yo-yo’ dieting; also compulsive or excessive physical exercise

Drug toxicity, for instance anesthesia with surgery or chemotherapy for cancer

Many prescription medications have hair loss as a potential ‘side’ effect, including bromocriptine, beta blockers, ACE inhibitors, amphetamines, anti-cholesterol agents

Severe infections, either viral or bacterial

Severe stress, either a sudden extreme event or persistent, long term challenges

Any hypothalamic or pituitary disorder

Any liver, thyroid gland, adrenal gland or ovarian disorder, including PCOS

Any sex steroid imbalance such as low progesterone, estrogen dominance, excess testosterone or insulin

Starting or stopping any hormone therapy, including birth control pills, menopausal hormone replacement treatment or thyroid hormone replacement

Any natural event that causes big hormone changes, like child birth, breastfeeding and weaning or menopause

Perms, hair color, bleach, improper brushing/combing, pulling on the hair

Autoimmune disease such as lupus or multiple sclerosis

Allergies to foods, medicines, environmental chemicals or topical drugs

Recent hepatitis B shot. If you had a Hep B vaccine since this hair loss started, there may be a connection. An article in the Journal of the American Medical Association (278:117-8, 1997) links the Hep B vaccine to increased incidence of alopecia in women.

How does an individual woman figure out why she is losing too much of her hair? To understand that, it’s important to understand how hair grows.

Hair Grows in Cycles

Scalp hair grows about one-half inch per month. An individual strand of hair will grow for two to six years. Eventually each hair “rests” for a while, and then falls out. Soon after, that follicle will start growing a new strand. A healthy scalp will let about 100 of these cycling hairs fall out every day.

In folks with a genetic predisposition to hair loss, and for women with PCOS, hormones called androgens drive this process. Androgen hormones include testosterone, androsteinedione, and dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Men make and use relatively large amounts of androgens. Appropriate, smaller amounts of androgens are essential to women’s health as well.

In those who are genetically susceptible, testosterone activates enzymes produced in the hair cell, which then cause it to be converted into the more potent androgen DHT. DHT then binds with receptors deep within the hair follicle. Eventually, so much DHT builds up that the follicle begins shrinking. It can’t produce new hair reliably. Some of the follicles permanently stop producing new hairs. The end result is significant hair loss. The medical term for this condition is androgenic alopecia. Testosterone converts to DHT with the aid of the enzyme Type II 5-alpha reductase, which is held in a hair follicle’s oil glands. Actually, it’s not the amount of circulating testosterone that is the problem but the amount of DHT clogging up and shrinking scalp follicles, making it impossible for healthy hair to survive.

The process of testosterone converting to DHT, which then harms hair follicles, happens in both men and women. Usually women have a tiny fraction of the amount of testosterone that men make. It seems that for women with hair loss, the actual level of testosterone is not as crucial as are changes in the amount of testosterone she has. A shift in hormone levels triggered by lifestyle or other factors, will cause DHT- triggered hair loss in women. Even when hormone blood levels remain within what doctors consider “normal”, they can become high enough to cause a problem for an individual woman. The levels may not rise at all and still be a problem if you are very sensitive to even normal levels of chemicals, including hormones.

Because our hormones operate through a delicately balanced feedback system, with signals sent via the blood between the brain and body tissue, androgens do not need to be raised to trigger a problem. If the so-called female hormones, (which also are essential to men’s health) are for any reason shifting in relation to androgens, the resulting imbalance can also cause problems, including hair loss.

Hormones are always changing. Testosterone levels in men drop by as much as 10 percent each decade after age thirty. Women’s hormone levels shift with each menstrual cycle, or due to a lack of regular menses, in pregnancies and menopause. Eating disorders, excessive exercise, drugs and environmental toxins can also impact hormone levels.

Keys To Successful Treatment

Treatment of thinning scalp hair must be grounded in changing the habits you may have that support elevated androgens. Diet and exercise are key to maintaining optimal hormone balance. In fact, for women with PCOS, research is clear- there is no drug therapy more effective than proper diet and regular exercise. First, you get your foundational health habits in order; then, specific targeted therapies have the best chance of being effective for you.

Women with PCOS may also have excess coarse dark hair on their face and body. The only way to address the dark, coarse hair that grows out of follicles that have already been altered by excess androgens, is to destroy the follicle with laser or similar therapy. Once a follicle has changed the type of hair it produces, it will not change back. It is crucial to tame the excess androgens and prevent conversion of additional follicles, before investing in a therapy to permanently destroy facial or body hair follicles.

What Causes Women to Lose Too Much Scalp Hair?

For a long time doctors believed that androgenic alopecia was the main cause of balding in both men and women. Now we know that the process that leads to excessive hair loss in women is different. It is called female pattern hair loss.

An important difference between male and female balding is the pattern in which the hair loss occurs. Female pattern hair loss tends to happen as an overall thinning across all areas of the scalp, including the sides and back. Men lose hair from specific spots, like the temple, the crown, that bald spot in the back of the head. Male and female hormone and enzyme receptor sites are also in different areas of the scalp, causing the different gender related loss patterns of hair loss.

A second major difference is that balding in men is usually caused by a man’s genetics and his age, but for women, balding can happen at any age.

Lifestyle Choices, Illness and Medical Treatments Cause Hair Loss

Most women with hair loss have multiple features of their lifestyle, diet and health-related events that contribute. Sex hormone fluctuations are responsible for most female hair loss, including those who have PCOS, a recent pregnancy, menopause, hormone replacement therapy or birth control drug side effects. Chemotherapy for cancer, anti-coagulant drugs, iron- deficiency anemia, autoimmune disease can cause hair loss. Any disease involving hormone producing glands, including the thyroid, the adrenal and pituitary glands can trigger balding in women. It is essential for all women to learn the true cause of their hair loss before engaging any particular treatment.

The complex hormonal changes that accompany polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) often result in scalp hair loss. Sometimes hair loss is the first sign that a woman is suffering the metabolic disorder that also causes problems with acne, facial and body hair growth, irregular menstrual cycles and infertility. PCOS is associated with increased risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers.

Thyroid disorders, anemia, chronic illness or the use of certain medications, particularly any form of hormone replacement therapy or contraceptive prescriptions- should be considered a possible cause of hair loss in women. Autoimmune disorders will result in somewhat different, often less dramatic hair loss known as alopecia areata — an inflammatory condition in which hair comes out in clumps or patches.

Any drop in estrogen levels, as happens after pregnancy, with menopause, or when changing your hormone therapy including birth control pill use, will cause what is called estrogenic alopecia. In contrast to testosterone, estrogen helps scalp hair grow faster and stay on the head longer, resulting in thicker hair. This is the reason women’s hair gets fuller during pregnancy when estrogen levels are quite high, then sheds several weeks after the baby is born.

For women who do not have fertility-related hormone changes, estrogen-deficiency scalp hair loss generally starts around menopause. This form of female hair loss can be the first sign of approaching menopause. Sometimes the alopecia won’t begin until a few months or even years after menstruation has ended. Not all women get noticeable alopecia after menopause but most have a little thinning.

It’s not uncommon to have multiple factors involved in female hair loss. Many women with PCOS have thyroid problems, usually hypothyroidism (low thyroid function). Not only does hypothyroidism contribute to weight problems, it can also contribute to hair thinning. Some women with PCOS have both an excessively high level of testosterone and an under active thyroid.

If your hair is thinning, you may have heavy metals like lead, mercury or cadmium in your tissues. These poisonous residues saturate our environment. If you have lived near what is, or ever was an industrial or mining site, or lived with someone who works in a polluting industry, you may be contaminated. If you have ever smoked tobacco, you have a lot of cadmium in your body.

The majority of women with androgenic alopecia have diffuse thinning on all areas of the scalp. Some women may have a combination of two pattern types. Androgenic alopecia is caused by a variety of factors tied to the actions of hormones including PCOS, using contraceptives, pregnancy, and menopause. Any blood sugar and insulin hormone imbalance will lead to excess androgens. Women with insulin resistance, from chronic over-eating of refined carbohydrate food, will see more impact from androgens. Insulin resistance is associated with PCOS as well as Type 2 diabetes. Chronic stress that depletes adrenal glands can change the levels of androgens a woman produces as well. This is often the source of problems like infertility, acne and hair thinning in lean, athletic women with PCOS. Heredity may play a role in androgenic alopecia.

Any big event like childbirth or breastfeeding, malnutrition from an alteration in your diet, a severe infection, major surgery, or any extreme stress, can suddenly shift much of the 90 percent or so of your hairs that are in the growing phase or resting phase into the shedding phase. You will see this shift in the rate of hair loss 6 weeks to three month after the stressful event. This is called telogen effluvium. It is possible to lose great bunches of hair daily with full-blown telogen effluvium. Usually this type of hair loss is reversible, if major stressors are avoided. For some women however, telogen effluvium is a mysterious chronic disorder and can persist for months or years, without ever completely identifying all of the triggering factors.

Anagen effluvium happens when the hair follicle cells are so damaged they can not recover or reproduce. This is usually due to toxicity of chemotherapy for cancer. Chemotherapy is meant to destroy rapidly dividing cancer cells. Hair follicles in the growing (anagen) phase, are therefore vulnerable. Anagen effluvium means the hair shaft narrows as a result of damage to the follicle. The shaft breaks off at the narrowing and causes the loss of hair.

Traction alopecia is damage from hairstyles that pull at hair over time (braiding, cornrows, ponytails, extensions). If the condition is detected early enough, you can change your styling practice to be gentler on the follicles, and your hair will regrow.

Hormone contraceptives are a leading cause of distressing hair loss and other symptoms in women. Since the birth control pill first began being used in 1960, oral contraceptives, injections, implants, skin patches and vaginal rings have become the most commonly prescribed forms of birth control.

Unfortunately, many young women are given contraceptive hormones even when they are not sexually active, as a ‘treatment’ for irregular menses or acne. This is a mistake. This is not a treatment that addresses the underlying cause of problem periods or pimples. Contraceptive hormones will severely complicate a woman’s hormone balance and can lead to many health problems, including significant hair loss and worsening acne.

All contraceptive drugs use synthetic hormones to suppress ovulation. These drugs cause your ovaries to stop working; they are in a kind of ‘sleep’ state. Instead of having your natural cycles result from a dance of signals between your body and your brain, your tissues are subject to synthetic hormones in amounts much larger than your body normally makes. There are many long and short -term consequences to ovarian suppression. Most women experience side effects using contraceptive drugs, including hair loss either during or several weeks or months after stopping the drug.

An article appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association (278:117-8, 1997) linking the Hepatitis B vaccine to increased incidence of balding in women.

Diagnostic Testing

In order to successfully treat hair loss, it is essential to understand why your hair follicles are not healthy. There are diagnostic tests that may help identify the underlying biochemistry that is contributing to your excess hair loss. However, many women with significant chemical imbalances related to their hair loss will find that these test results are within the “normal” range. That’s because in many cases hair loss represents a stage of ill-health that is an early phase of a disease that will eventually fully develop. The lifestyle and dietary habits that eventually cause Type 2 diabetes and heart disease will also cause scalp hair thinning and facial hair coarsening in young women. It is usually many years before these same women have diagnostic tests that reveal they are diabetic or have coronary artery disease. Many of these women have undiagnosed PCOS.

Selective Sensitivity is the underlying problem

Another reason why diagnostic tests may be confusing is because of something called ‘selective sensitivity’ or ‘selective resistance’. It turns out that some body cells are more sensitive than others to the same amounts of hormone. A major complicating factor for some women is that while her muscle and fat may be insulin resistant, other types of organ cells are not. The pituitary, ovaries, and adrenal glands of an insulin resistant woman are stimulated by higher levels of insulin than is desirable, which causes for instance elevated testosterone. The high levels of androgens in turn increase risk for heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers.

Despite these possible difficulties, it is important to do our best to determine what is and isn’t the cause of a major symptom like persistent excessive hair loss. Diagnostic tests that can help identify the source of your metabolic imbalance are:

The hair pull test is a simple diagnostic test in which the physician lightly pulls a small amount of hair (approx. 100 simultaneously) in order to determine if there is excessive loss. Normal range is zero to three hairs per pull.

Hormone levels: Dehydroepiandrosterone, testosterone, androstenedione, prolactin, sex hormone binding globulin, follicular stimulating hormone, and luteinizing hormone. It is ideal to sample for FSH and LH on day 19 to 21 of your menstrual cycle, if those days can be identified.

Fasting blood glucose and insulin levels as well as cholesterol and triglyceride levels

A complete blood count plus serum iron, ferritin and total iron binding capacity

Thyroid stimulating hormone plus a thyroid function panel including T3, T4, and T3 % uptake

VDRL to screen for syphilis

A scalp biopsy should be done before choosing surgical transplant

Densitometry, a magnification device, used check for shrinking of the hair shaft.

Conventional Medical Treatments For Hair Loss

You may be very interested in drug therapies of surgery to address the profound distress of excessive hair loss. It is simply human nature to hope for a simple pill or procedure that will permanently free us from our problems. Unfortunately drugs never actually provide a simple solution. Once you swallow a chemical, it is delivered all over your body; it affects your whole body. We cannot control drugs so they have only the effects we want- there are always side effects that are more or less problematic. Using drug therapy means trading one problem for some others. Sometimes this is exactly the right thing to do. Other times it is a personal disaster. Most drugs will act on all your tissues there is a danger of side effects that further damage your health. Topical treatments applied directly to the scalp use the lowest doses, and are the least harmful drug choices.

You will enjoy the best results when you begin any treatment as soon as possible after hair loss begins. Stopping the adverse effects of androgens means you can prevent further hair loss. And you can support regrowth from the follicles that were dormant still healthy. Depending on how the agent you choose works, stopping treatment will result in the hair loss resuming, unless you have also made other changes in your lifestyle that keep androgens at a level that is healthy and not harmful to you.

Below you will find a list of treatments currently being used to treat hair loss in women. Some of these drugs have not been approved by the FDA for this particular application, however they have all been approved for other applications and are used “off label” to treat hair loss. Currently 2% topical Minoxidil is the only FDA approved treatment specifically for female pattern hair loss.

The effectiveness of these agents and methods will vary from woman to woman, but many women have found that using these treatments has made a positive difference in the character of their hair and their positive self-esteem. As always, treatments have the best chance of being effective if they are geared to the cause of the hair loss as well as to triggering hair growth.

Estrogen and progesterone as hormone replacement therapy (HRT), typically prescribed for women undergoing menopause for any reason, is probably the most common systemic form of treatment for androgenic alopecia in women.

Oral contraceptives will decrease the production of ovarian androgens, and thus can be used to treat women’s androgenic alopecia. There are substantial reasons to avoid the use of either synthetic or bio-identical hormone treatments for your hair loss. Some birth control pills actually contribute to hair loss by triggering it or increasing it once it’s been triggered by something else. Any individual woman may have a selective sensitivity to any hormone combination- what is a low androgen effect formula for one woman may be a high androgen effect for another.

I am no longer able to recommend the use of birth control pills or other hormone-based contraception to young women. Decades of evidence suggest there are plenty of known, and possibly as yet unknown health risks associated with the use of ANY from of reproductive hormones, either prescription or over-the-counter forms. It is clear that the benefits of hormonal contraceptives are accompanied by significant risks, including making it much more likely that a woman will experience hormone imbalances that lead to a long list of negative effects. Hormone replacement puts you are risk for:

Depression or other mood disorders; decreased libido

Migraines and headaches

Breast lumps, tenderness and enlargement

Vaginal bleeding between periods

High blood pressure (hypertension)

High cholesterol

Blood clot in the leg, felt as: pain in the calf; leg cramps; leg or foot swelling

Blood clot in the lung, felt as: shortness of breath; sharp chest pain; coughing up blood

Heart attack, felt as: chest pain or heaviness

Sudden loss of vision or vision changes, which can be a sign of a blood clot in the eye

Cerebral vascular accident (a stroke): impaired vision or speech; weakness or numbness in a limb; severe headache

Liver damage, seen as: yellow eyes or skin; dark urine; abdominal pain

Allergic reaction: rash; hives; itching; swelling; difficulty breathing or swallowing


Bloating, nausea and vomiting

Changes in your eyes that make it more difficult to wear contact lenses

If you chose a hormone prescription for any reason, you should be sure to use only low-androgen content methods. If you have a strong predisposition for genetic hair loss, insulin resistance, diabetes, heart disease or any female organ cancer in your family I strongly recommend the use of another non-hormonal form of birth control.

Below is a list of birth control pills ranging from lowest androgen index to highest:

Desogen, Ortho-Cept, Ortho-Cyclen, Ortho Tri-Cyclen, Micronor, Nor-Q D, Ovcon-35, Brevicon/Modicon, Ortho Norvum 7/7/7, Ortho Novum 10-11, Tri-Norinyl, Norinyl and Ortho 1/35, Demulen 1/35, Triphasil/Tri-Levien, Nordette, Lo/Ovral, Ovrette, Ovral, Loestrin1/20, Loestrin 1.5/30.

The following hormonal contraceptives have a significant potential of causing hair loss or making it worse:

Progestin implants, such as Norplant, are small rods surgically implanted under your skin. The rods release a continuous dose of progestin to prevent ovarian function.

Progestin injections, such as Depo-Provera, are given into the muscles of the upper arm or buttocks.

The skin patch (Ortho Evra) is pasted onto your shoulder, buttocks, or other location. It releases progestin and estrogen continuously to prevent your ovaries from producing normal cycles.

The vaginal ring (NuvaRing) is a flexible ring that is inserted into the vagina. This method releases the lowest amounts of progestin and estrogen.

Minoxidil 2% Topical Treatment – Minoxidil seems to be more effective for women than men, for increasing scalp hair growth. The manufacturers of minoxidil recommend women use 2% minoxidil. There is a 5% solution available that has been tested and found safe enough for men. Because the makers of minoxidil have not invested in the expense of gaining FDA approval for promoting 5% minoxidil for use by women, it must be prescribed and used under a physician’s supervision. Small clinical trials on 5% minoxidil for women show that the 5% solution is in fact more effective in both retaining and regrowing hair than the 2 % solution.

Spironolactone (Aldactone) is a potassium-sparing diuretic used to treat high blood pressure and swelling. Spironolactone slows the production of androgens in the adrenal glands and ovaries. It prevents DHT from binding to receptor sites in the hair follicles.

Cimetidine (Tagamet) is a histamine blocker, approved to treat digestive tract ulcers. It prevents the stomach from producing digestive enzymes. Cimetidine also has been shown to block DHT from binding to hair follicle receptor sites.

Cyproterone acetate is used to reduce sexual aggression in men. Cyproterone acetate blocks DHT at hair follicle receptors. It has significant toxicity and long term side effects and is not available in the US.

Ketoconazole is a prescription topical treatment. It is primarily used as an antimicrobial for treating skin fungus. It suppresses production of androgens by adrenal glands, testicles and ovaries. Nizoral shampoo contains 2% ketoconazole. There is an over-the-counter version available. It has 1% active ingredient and is not as effective as prescription strength.

Finasteride is a drug that inhibits the enzyme 5-alpha reductase, an enzyme that deactivates DHT. It is sold as Proscar to treat prostate enlargement in men. Sold as Propecia it is approved by the FDA for male balding. Women should not take it if they are pregnant or might become pregnant because of the risk of feminization effects on a male fetus.

Surgical Implants

Since hair restoration surgery is an option for the vast majority of the balding men, women may want to consider it. However, the type of hair loss most women suffer from makes hair transplants a bad idea.

Few women have the type of hair loss that make them good candidates for a surgical solution. Most men lose hair in well-defined areas, for instance the receding forehead or the classic round spot on the top of the skull. Little clumps or plugs of hair are removed from areas where healthy follicles are stable and plentiful, and these are transplanted to other areas of the head. Women more often experience an overall thinning across their whole scalp, including the sides and back. Most women have few reliably stable donor sites. Offering to transplant hair from unstable donor sites is medically unethical and women must not allow their distress about balding to get in the way of a cool- eyed look at the rationale behind treatment options offered.

Are any women good candidates for hair transplant? Yes, some. A small percentage, 2% to 5% of women will have the type of hair loss that will benefit from this type of procedure. They are:

Women who have suffered hair loss due to non-hormonal causes, like traction alopecia.

Women who have scalp scars from some kind of wound or cosmetic surgery and want to repair hair loss around the incision or injury sites.

Women who have healthy and stable donor sites along with balding in a distinct pattern, like a receding hairline or thinning on the very top of the head.

Natural Remedies for Women’s Hair Loss

Safe, effective natural therapies are available to help you restore scalp health and increase hair growth. Like all natural therapies, in order to be maximally effective, it is essential to work with you as an individual. Some remedies will be more useful to you than others, depending on your unique, personal physical, mental and emotional health status. It is always important to spend your health care dollars well. I offer a consultation service to help you choose and make best use of the available options for treatment. Please visit your local ND to find out how to benefit from a personal consultation. You will receive recommendations for specific natural therapies, designed for your unique health status, to help you restore your health, and your scalp hair to it’s fullest and most enjoyable beauty.