Use of Topical Finasteride for Hair Loss – Guide​

topical finasteride

Use of Topical Finasteride for Hair Loss - Guide

written by Matt Dominance

If you are new to my website, make sure you read Medical Disclaimer before you continue reading this article.

In this post on Topical Finasteride you will find out:

  • Introduction 
  • Does it work?
  • Differences between oral and topical version of Finasteride 
  • Best concentration
  • Side effects
  • Different types and formulations
  • Can you make topical Finasteride yourself?

Introduction

Topical Finasteride works on the same basis as oral Finasteride. Both inhibit the 5 alpha reductase (Type 2), which converts Testosterone into DHT (Dihydrotestosterone).

Oral Finasteride initially inhibits DHT systemically (in the blood serum) and later accumulates in the scalp tissue, where it helps “block” the DHT in the scalp. 

Topical one initially inhibits DHT topically (in the scalp) and later absorbs systemically. That’s why many people get surprised if their plasma DHT levels decrease while using the topical (either liposomal gel, hydro-alcoholic solution or emulsion).

Does Topical Finasteride work?

Effects of Topical Finasteride 0.25% on the systemic DHT suppression vs scalp DHT suppression

Based on this study, topical 0.25% solution goes systemic and it alters your DHT levels by as much as 80%(1)

This leads to the same (if not higher) systemic DHT suppression compared to its oral version.

The same concentration of 0.25% is also able to inhibit about 70% DHT in the scalp tissue.

What is more effective? Topical or Oral Finasteride?

Oral Finasteride generally needs more time to accumulate in the scalp tissue because of oral intake (up to 1 month of taking 1mg Finasteride a day).

Finasteride 0.25% topical on the other hand may only need 1 week to induce 70% scalp DHT inhibition.

In the long run however, it seems that oral version may slightly outperform the topical one.(2)

Study on 45 male patients taking 1mg Finasteride tablet vs 0.1% Finasteride gel

This double blind, randomized clinical study between oral finasteride 1mg and topical 1% solution (liposomal gel) showed similar efficacy after 18 months in one study.

Comparing the therapeutic effects of finasteride gel and tablet in treatment of the androgenetic alopecia

Best Topical Finasteride Concentration

topical finasteride best concentration

Finasteride in topical form doesn´t have a standardized concentration yet and the efficacious concentration (which is also the most side effect free) is likely to be lower than 0.25%.

Effects of a novel finasteride 0.25% topical solution on scalp and serum dihydrotestosterone in healthy men with androgenetic alopecia

This study has shown that 0.1ml – 0.2ml of Finasteride liquid 0.25% had the best ability to inhibit scalp DHT (37% – 52%) with only 24%-26% serum DHT suppression.

Source: Effects of finasteride on scalp and serum dihydrotestosterone in androgenetic alopecia

Maurizio Caserini, Milko Radicioni, Chiara Leuratti, Emanuela Terragni,
Matilde Iorizzo, and Renata Palmieri
Topical Finasteride best concentration - Matt Dominance

Here´s how dosing works by 0.25% concentration:

Topical Finasteride 0.25% = 2.5 mg Finasteride per 1 ml

This corresponds to:

0.25 mg Finasteride per 0.1 ml

0.5 mg Finasteride per 0.2 ml

1 mg Finasteride per 0.4 ml

5 mg Finasteride per 2 ml

7.5 mg Finasteride per 3 ml

10 mg Finasteride per 4 ml

0.025% Topical Finasteride - the most side effect-free?

Based on the study above, it seems like the 0.025% concentration seems to have the highest scalp DHT suppression while simultaneously having the least systemic DHT suppression.

Higher systemic DHT suppression usually means higher risk of side effects.

0.025% Topical Finasteride with Stemoxydine
My Home Made Topical Finasteride solution 0.025% with Stemoxydine as a solvent

In this post I explain you how to prepare your own 0.025% solution by using Stemoxydine and topical Finasteride which is available online without prescription. Check it out here!

Stemoxydine is another less known anti-hair loss compound, which has been developed by Loreal. 

Research shows, that this molecule can successfully shorten the Kenogen phase of the hair follicle’s growth cycle.

Shortening the Kenogen phase means, faster anagen release of the hair follicle.

In other words, it means that the hair follicle starts growing again faster!

 

Side Effects

If we assume that Finasteride liquid (in higher concentrations) is in fact able to inhibit systemic DHT the same way as oral Finasteride 1mg, then the same side effect risk is to be expected.

Possible side effects are:

  • Decreased libido
  • Erectile and sexual dysfunction
  • Gynecomastia 

How high is the side effect risk?

Side effect report on Finasteride based on this meta analysis (17 randomized controlled trials with 17,494 patients) says:

Side effects like decreased libido, erectile dysfunction and sexual dysfunction were observed in subjects treated with Finasteride, however the percentage of men who experienced them was not statistically significant.

Statistically insignificant means, that the percentage of subjects experiencing these side effects on Finasteride is similar/or doesn’t differ way to much from the percentage of subjects not exposed to Finasteride.

Another study also summarized that side effects from Finasteride can occur initially but normalize with continued use. 

 

How to get Topical Finasteride with prescription vs for research purposes

You can get topical solutions with Finasteride compounded by a pharmacy (prescription required) or you can order it online.

Price of a pharmacy compounded Finasteride solution can be 2-3 times higher than getting it for research purposes.

How to make Topical solution with Finasteride for research purposes

In this short blog post I explain how to only get 1 single 60 ml bottle of topical Finasteride and make it last over 1 year while effectively managing your hair loss every day! 

The issue with topical solutions available online is, that their concentrations are unnecessary high e.g 0.1%, 0.2% or even 0.25%. 

By mixing these topical solutions with solvents like stemoxydine from Serioxyl or Cerafill you can simply lower the Finasteride concentration, get similar effectiveness and make the product last 3 times longer! 

Read more about it here…

Pharmacy compounded Topical solutions with Finasteride (prescription needed)

Topical solution: liposomal Gel 2.5%

My experience with pharmacy compounded topical 1% Finasteride

Topical Finasteride from a pharmacy, which I have been using for 6 months.

I haven´t experienced any sexual side effects whatsoever.

The only side effect I experienced initially were slight headaches.

This solution contained 25mg of Finasteride per 1ml (2.5%).

This compund started to work already within the first month of using it daily.

The cost: 45 Euro per 30ml bottle you see on the photo. Sometimes I had to use more than 1ml to sufficiently cover up all the thinning areas which made it last shorter than 1 month.

Topical Finasteride with prescription available by the following physicians:

Topical Finasteride concentrations may vary among physicians and pharmacies

  • Dr. Alan Bauman (Boca Raton, Florida,USA)
  • Dr. Hasson & Wong (Vancouver, Canada)
  • Dr. Carlos Wesley (NYC,USA)
  • Farmaciaparati (Italy/online)
  • Allerheiligen Apotheke (Austria)
  • Dr. Christian Bisanga (Brussels, Belgium)
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24 Replies to “Use of Topical Finasteride for Hair Loss – Guide​”

  1. Hey Matt
    I’m your following fan on YouTube
    I’m a clinician and prescriber
    How I can order the topical 0.5%?

  2. Hi Pete. The highest concentration of topical Finasteride I was able to find online for purchase was 0.25

  3. Hi Matt,

    Interesting post.

    I have a question about dosage.

    In the first part you wrote that 0,1% topical finasteride, per ml, contains 1mg of oral finasteride

    In the last part ‘My experience with pharmacy topical finasteride’ I can see a picture of a pharmacy made bottle of finasteride gel of 2.5 %. In the text next to this picture you say that this 2.5% of topical finasteride equites 2.5mg of finasteride, per ml. That seems to contradict to what you said before.

    If 0.1%, per ml, equites 1mg, then 2.5 %, per ml, equites 25 mg. Correct ?

    Anyway, It seems that topical finasteride of 2.5% contains be a very high dosage of finasteride (25gr). It is the equivalent of 25 pills of oral finasteride, per day. Would you agree to that ?

    Regards,

    Paul

  4. Hi Matt,

    Interesting post.

    I have a question about dosage.

    In the first part you wrote that 0,1% topical finasteride, per ml, contains 1mg of oral finasteride

    In the last part ‘My experience with pharmacy topical finasteride’ I can see a picture of a pharmacy made bottle of finasteride gel of 2.5 %. In the text next to this picture you say that this 2.5% of topical finasteride equites 2.5mg of finasteride, per ml. That seems to contradict to what you said before.

    If 0.1%, per ml, equites 1mg, then 2.5 %, per ml, equites 25 mg. Correct ?

    Anyway, It seems that topical finasteride of 2.5% contains be a very high dosage of finasteride (25gr). It is the equivalent of 25 pills of oral finasteride, per day. Would you agree to that ?

    Regards,

    Paul

  5. Hello

    I see on the picture the pharmacy made finasteride gel contains 2,5% finasteride, per 1 ml. Is this 2.5 or 25 mg of finasteride ?

    (I read 0.1% in 1 ml equites 1 mg. Later I read 2.5 % in 1 ml equites 2.5 mg. One of these figures seem to be off)

    Regards

    Paul

  6. Hi Matt,

    Interesting post.

    I have a question about dosage.

    In the first part you wrote that 0,1% topical finasteride, per ml, contains 1mg of oral finasteride

    In the last part ‘My experience with pharmacy topical finasteride’ I can see a picture of a pharmacy made bottle of finasteride gel of 2.5 %. In the text next to this picture you say that this 2.5% of topical finasteride equites 2.5mg of finasteride, per ml. That seems to contradict to what you said before.

    If 0.1%, per ml, equites 1mg, then 2.5 %, per ml, equites 25 mg. Correct ?

    Anyway, It seems that topical finasteride of 2.5% contains be a very high dosage of finasteride (25gr). It is the equivalent of 25 pills of oral finasteride, per day. Would you agree to that ?

    Regards,

    Paul

  7. Thank Matt. Very helpful. Can you please clarify why you have been using 2.5% Finasteride gel while you say 0.025% is the ideal dosage? Is gel dosage different from solution?

    1. Hi. Yes, the gel is 2.5% – an equivalent of 25mg Finasteride per 1 ml. The liposomal gel has a short shelf life, it has to be ordered once every 3-6 months, and also it is expensive. That’s why I stopped using it. At the moment I am taking 0.5mg oral Finasteride which would be an equivalent of 0.05% topical finasteride. 0.025% concentration of topical finasteride has shown the lowest systemic DHT suppression while still having decent DHT suppressive effects in the scalp – that’s why. This study is also linked in the article.

  8. Thank you Matt! I am getting a hair transplant next week and have been researching Fin and topical Fin every day now for a few weeks. I have learned a lot however your article was perfectly formulated and easy to read and follow. Thank you for making this part easy for the rest of us. Big props bro and your hair transplant looks amazing btw!

  9. Hi! I know this is kinda off topic but I’d figured I’d ask.
    Would you be interested in trading links or
    maybe guest authoring a blog post or vice-versa? My
    site addresses a lot of the same topics as yours and I
    believe we could greatly benefit from each other.
    If you might be interested feel free to shoot me an e-mail.
    I look forward to hearing from you! Fantastic blog by the way!

  10. Though I understand it is probably not advisable, how would go about using a combination of oral and topical fin? Dosage, frequency, etc.

    1. It would make more sense to use a combination of oral Finasteride and topical Dutasteride (with possible addition of microneedling once every 10 days). I made a video on it on my YouTube channel

  11. There’s a mistake in the top 3 graphic. They didn’t use 0.025% but instead 100 microliters, that means 1/10 of a milliliter of the 0.25% solution. They named the 0.25% solution “P-3074” and tried out different volumes. But the concentration was always the same.

    1. Hi. If a solution has a concentration of 0.25% it means that the concentration is standardized for 1ml of solution. By applying 50% or just 20% of that solution, the concentration will not remain 0.25% anymore.

  12. Hello Matt
    I was wondering how I could order finasteride liposomal gel. I know that it’s an Italian pharmacy. Do I contact them in English and in return for a prescription, they send me the gel? Or can I ask for a lesser concentration, (not 2.5%)? Does the gel impede more systemic absorbtion? Just asking because 2.5% seems to be a lot. Appreciate if you get back.

    1. Hey Laszlo. Exactly. You can contact them in ENG and before they prepare the formulation for you, the prescription is required.
      If you got a prescription for less than 2.5%, than yes. They are just a pharmacy. Your doctor who prescribed the solution is ultimately
      responsible for what concentration you will get. 2.5% is a typical concentration for liposomal solutions. Yes, the concentration is more than the hydroalcoholic solutions have, but this is simoly a different type of formulation which requires higher concentration. Hope it helps

  13. Hello Matt
    I saw your video about the liposomal gel. In the Youtube video you said that the Italians compounded for you the gel. So do I contact them and by emailing my prescription, they will send me a compound? Also, why is the concentration of Finasteride so high, an equivalent of 25 mg tablets? Can I ask for a gel which has the equivalent of 1mg? That would be 0.1% I guess? Or with gel a high dosis is required?

    Thanks
    Geza

    1. I emailed them and what’s app-ed them my prescription. Then they asked me for my address and the solution was received 1-2 days after they sent it.
      No you can not ask for less. 2.5% is the standardized concentration they use for their topical F solutions.

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