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The best hair growth products for women in 2024, tried and tested

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The best hair growth products for women in 2024, tried and tested

There are many factors that can impact hair loss, and gender isn't one. Women can experience hair loss the same as men, and some women will experience female pattern hair loss during their lifetime. One difference between genders is that women who experience hair loss report higher levels of depression and social anxiety compared to men. And although it doesn't seem too serious health-wise, keeping hair health top of mind is important for everyone.

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Luckily, there are plenty of products out there designed to help with hair loss. But before you shop, it’s important to choose the right one for you. “Determining the most effective hair regrowth treatment depends on identifying the underlying cause of hair loss,” says Dr. Michelle Henry, board-certified dermatologist. The most common cause, she tells me, is androgenetic alopecia, a hereditary and progressive condition known as male or female pattern hair loss. However, genetics aren’t the only risk factor. Henry adds, “Stress, illnesses, hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, and certain medications can also contribute to hair loss.” Once you have a better understanding of the cause of hair loss, you can more easily determine which treatment or medication is right for you.

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Currently, there are two FDA-approved hair loss medications available for women: minoxidil, a topical solution sold over-the-counter, and Ritlecitinib, an oral prescription medication that was recently approved for people with alopecia areata. Other scalp treatments can include platelet-rich plasma therapy, laser combs or caps, supplements, shampoos and serums.

To help better understand the best hair loss products available today, we spoke with multiple board-certified dermatologists, trichologists, and plastic surgeons to learn what to look for in effective hair care products and what to avoid. We took that feedback and researched over 40 different hair growth products formulated for women and tested quite a few ourselves. Each product was evaluated based on key ingredients, cost, ease and frequency of use, efficacy, and user insights and reviews. Here's what we've determined are the best hair growth products for women. Read on below to understand how to choose the right product for you and meet our experts.

Best overall hair growth product for women

Best for: Hair thinning and shedding | Key Ingredients: Proprietary blend

Even though Harklinikken's award-winning Hair Gain Extract is pricey, each bottle is customized specifically for your hair type and hair concerns. When signing on to the Harklinikken website, you fill out a brief questionnaire that covers your hair type, hair thinning and shedding concerns, current and past medical conditions, diet and exercise, and any past procedures, illnesses or stressful life events that can lead to thinning and loss. After completing the survey, a tailored hair treatment regime is created, helping to improve the condition of the scalp, strengthen the hair at the roots, re-engage hair follicles, stimulate regrowth, and prevent future hair loss. Harklinikken comes highly recommended by one of our experts, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Glenn Vallecillos, who tells us, "In our practice, we have seen great success with the Harklinikken line, which addresses specific types of hair loss by offering customized, targeted and responsive treatments, based on the patient's unique history, scalp profile and hair loss circumstances." 

You can purchase one bottle at a time for $88 or opt into auto-replenish and save 15% off the retail price ($74.80).

Pros
  • Doctor recommended
  • Custom-formulated for your needs
  • Clinically proven results
Cons
  • Requires a questionnaire and/or consultation to obtain the product
$75 with auto-replenish subscription at Harklinikken

Other top hair growth products for women we recommend in 2024

Key Ingredient: 5% Minoxidil | Best for: Thinning and Shedding

Perhaps one of the most recognizable brands when it comes to hair loss, Rogaine offers FDA-approved products for both men and women to help with regrowth. Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Amy Taub tells us, "The oldest established remedy and still one that is used quite a bit is topical minoxidil." For women, the 5% minoxidil foam solution was the first FDA-approved minoxidil product cleared for use by women specifically. It penetrates the scalp to revive hair follicles and increase protein production to help regrow stronger, thicker hair. Clinical studies showed the product helped regrow hair in over 80% of women in as little as 12 weeks, with visible results after continuous daily use after 24 weeks. 

The formula is unscented, and unlike messy liquid drops, it comes in an easy-to-use aerosol foam. It only needs to be applied once a day, making it far more convenient than its competitors. The only downside is the side effects that come with medicated minoxidil hair loss treatments, including (while rare) irritated skin, rash, inflammation or soreness on the scalp at hair follicles.

Pros
  • Mess-free foam
  • Clinically proven to work
  • Four-month supply
Cons
  • May be irritating for those with sensitive skin
$47 at Amazon
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$47 at Rogaine

Features: 100% Vegan | Special use: Thickening shampoo | Hair type: All hair types experiencing shedding and thinning | Formula: Biotin, saw palmetto, pumpkin seed oil | Scent: Napa Rose | Size: 6.4 oz

Hers stands as a well-respected leader focused on women's health and wellness by offering over-the-counter and prescription medication for various conditions from sexual health to mental health to hair loss. The Triple Treat Shampoo from Hers is clinically proven to boost hair and scalp health and promote hair growth. AOL's senior health editor, April McCormick, personally tested this shampoo and said she loved it, "After the first wash, my scalp felt clean and invigorated." By the end of the testing period, she was a believer and bought a second bottle. 

What makes this product work is the combination of biotin, saw palmetto and pumpkin seed oil working in tandem to cleanse the scalp, gently exfoliate away sebum build-up and promote blood flow and oxygen to the hair follicles.

Pros
  • Formulated for women's skin to reduce irritation
  • A favorite of Yahoo's health editor
  • Clinically proven
Cons
  • The rose scene can be overpowering for some
$14 at Amazon
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$19 at Hers$13 at CVS

Product type: Oil | Best for: Promoting density and hair regrowth | Key Ingredients: 30 essential oils and biotin | Cost: $12

Mielle Organics Rosemary Mint Scalp & Hair Strengthening Oil is not only a viral phenomenon, but it's also a favorite amongst AOL staffers. First and foremost, it's formulated with all-natural organic ingredients that are safe for all skin- and hair-types, yet is still incredibly effective. Second, rosemary oil is hair-growth powerhouse that has been clinically proven in multiple studies to work as well as minoxidil. In fact, one major study found that rosemary oil not only worked as well as minoxidil at promoting hair growth, the participants in both the minoxidil control group and the rosemary control group experienced the same amount of hair growth. The study also found that participants in the rosemary group stuck with the treatment longer than the minoxidil group. 

The oil works by creating an all-over healthy scalp environment for hair to grow, starting with nourishing the scalp, hair follicles and hair shaft root to tip while also reducing inflammation and increasing vasodilation, which is a fancy word for opening blood vessels and promoting blood flow and circulation, which has also been proven to help promote hair growth. The most important thing you must do to see results is stick with it for at least a few months, with application at least every other day. This is the case for all hair growth products; hair can only grow so fast.

Pro tip: For those with fine hair, rub one to two drops between just the fingertips and massage straight into the scalp for at least a minute. This will minimize excess oil transfer from your palms to hair and leave your hair with extra volume.

Pros
  • All-natural, organic ingredients
  • Rosemary oil is clinically proven to be as effective as Minoxidil
  • Nourishes scalp and hair root to tip
Cons
  • Will weigh hair down with overuse
$9 at Walmart
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$9 at Amazon$11 at Ulta Beauty

Key Ingredients: Curcumin Stem Cell Extract, Red Clover, Mung Bean and CBD | Best for: All hair types experiencing thinning and shedding

Vegamour is a vegan hair care company with a cult following. This just might be for good reason: the company offers extremely effective hair products and supplements designed for all different types of hair concerns. That includes graying, dandruff and dryness, but it is the hair growth products that really steal the show. The high praises extend beyond reviews on the website or Amazon and Sephora. Celebrities like Nicole Kidman (an ambassador), Bella Hadid and Mandy Moore all sing Vegamour's praises. But what is the most telling are the before and after photos from actual users. 

The brand's original best-selling GRO serum features a blend of curcumin stem cell extract, red clover and mung bean, all of which are natural DHT blockers that can help stimulate hair growth. But for those with more extensive hair loss, the GRO+ Advanced serum may have more benefits than the original formula, adding microencapsulated cannabidiol (CBD) – aka hemp oil – to the mix. Although CBD has become an uber-trendy ingredient, that doesn’t mean it’s ineffective. In fact, research has found that topical CBD can reduce hair loss and promote regrowth. 

Pros
  • Plant-based
  • Celebrity loved brand
  • Targets hair shaft hair follicles and scalp
Cons
  • Must stick with the product for at least three months
  • Expensive
$74 at Vegamour

Key Ingredients: Ashwagandha, collagen peptides, maca, saw palmetto, antioxidants, horsetail

Nutrafol are natural, physician-formulated supplements that promote hair growth and overall wellness. The products use a blend of vitamins, minerals, botanicals and antioxidants to tackle the six root causes of hair loss: hormones, stress, lifestyle, metabolism, nutrition and aging. There's also a mix of DHT blockers, including curcumin, saw palmetto, resveratrol and horsetail to help reduce thinning and hair loss. Other science-backed ingredients, such as ashwagandha, marine collagen peptides and keratin, are included as a way to strengthen hair follicles and encourage growth.

We especially love that the company has made research a priority. In a clinical trial, women taking Nutrafol supplements had longer, thicker hair after six months and improvements in overall hair growth, volume and color. Many of the participants reported improvements in other aspects of their well-being, including stress levels, anxiety, sleep quality and skin health.

Pros
  • Clinically proven to reduce hair shedding and improve volume
  • Formulated for women 45+
  • Free from gluten, dairy, soy, hormones, artificial additives, and GMO
Cons
  • May take up to 6 months to see results
$88 at Amazon
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$88 at Sephora

Key Ingredients: 2% minoxidil solution, biotin gummies, shampoo with salicylic acid, saw palmetto, and pumpkin seed oil | Best for: All hair types experiencing thinning and loss, and those that want to be proactive before thinning and loss occurs 

Hers is a telehealth platform for women, providing everything from hair growth treatments to mental health support to prescription-strength skin care. You may have seen the commercials featuring brand ambassador Kristen Bell speaking about how Hers helped with her mental health. As part of their vast array of treatments and help, there is a hair growth program, the Hers Complete Kit, that comes with four products designed to work in tandem to promote a healthy scalp and hair regrowth: The Triple Threat shampoo, Triple Threat Conditioner, 2% Minoxidil Solution drops and Biotin Builder gummies.

The complete hair regime begins with the Triple Threat shampoo, including salicylic acid, which works to promote scalp health by removing excess sebum and dead skin cells. It’s also formulated with two natural DHT blockers, pumpkin seed oil and saw palmetto. The next step includes the Triple Threat Conditioner, a blend of argan, coconut and sunflower seed oil to keep your hair shiny and scalp moisturized. The next step is the 2% Minoxidil Solution, which has proven efficacy and FDA approval for women experiencing hair loss. Last but not least, Biotin builder gummies - taken once a day - are fortified with biotin, Vitamin D, and folic acid to help support healthy hair, skin and nails.

The kit will run $55 for a single purchase or $38-$44 per month with an auto-replenish subscription in intervals of 1, 3 or 6 months; the products can be purchased separately as well.

Pros
  • All-in-one hair growth kit
  • Clinically proven to work
  • Industry-leading brand
Cons
  • A four-step regime may be too time-consuming
$55 at Hers

Factors to consider when choosing hair loss products for women

  • Type of hair loss: First and foremost, Dr. Michelle Henry, a board-certified dermatologist, tells us the most important thing is to get to the root of your hair loss. "There are several underlying causes of hair loss, so before you can figure out the best treatment, you need to understand the reason." Regardless of gender, hair loss is most often due to a genetic condition called androgenic alopecia, stress, nutritional deficiencies and certain medications – like, chemotherapy, for example – can also be responsible for hair loss. Illness is another potential culprit. Additionally, “Some individuals have reported experiencing hair loss after contracting COVID-19,” says Dr. Henry. Covid-related hair loss is likely due to stress, she adds, but there are some studies suggesting that the virus can cause damage to the hair follicle.

  • Type of product: When it comes to hair growth products, there are plenty of options to choose from. There are a few in-office procedures you can try, such as microneedling or laser therapy, along with at-home tools like derma rollers and red-light devices. Other options include medications, vitamins, supplements, shampoos, oils and serums.

  • Prescription vs. Non-prescription treatment: “When seeking the right hair growth product, it's essential to consider two main categories: those containing FDA-approved drugs like minoxidil and finasteride, and natural alternatives,” says Khanna. While finasteride is not available without a prescription, minoxidil can come in both oral and topical forms. Oral minoxidil will require a prescription, whereas topical solutions can be purchased over the counter.

  • Ingredients: According to dermatologist Dr. Rekha Singh, over-the-counter products can be highly effective as long as they use the right ingredients. “Look for ingredients such as minoxidil, biotin, and keratin that are known to stimulate hair growth and strengthen hair,” she says. If you’re looking for a more natural hair growth product, Khanna suggests ingredients like rosemary, nettle extract, caffeine and peppermint which can help stimulate scalp circulation. The best way to figure out if a product is worthwhile, though, is to do your own research when it comes to the ingredient list.

  • Budget: Regardless of the type of treatment you choose, results don’t happen overnight. “It is important to be patient and consistent when using hair growth products,” says Singh. In other words, it’s an investment. Take that into consideration when looking for a hair loss treatment and choose something that you can afford to use consistently.

How we tested the best hair growth products for women

To determine the best hair growth products for women, we spoke to several dermatologists about hair loss treatments and looked at clinical studies for more insight into effective ingredients. We then researched over 40 different female hair loss products and evaluated each based on key ingredients, user reviews, in-house testing results, efficacy, cost and ease of use.

Other products hair growth products for women we tried

To ensure we did our due diligence in bringing you a comprehensive list of the best hair growth products for women, we tested many of the top products on the market and a few not so well known, but came highly recommended by our experts and reviewers. One such product is the KeraFactor hair growth line, which is almost exclusively sold at dermatologists' offices or directly from the manufacturer. While it has shown extremely promising results, especially its thickening 2-in-1 shampoo + conditioner, it has a high price point, so we left it off the list until we are fully finished using its KeraFactor Combo System to ensure the results are truly worth a $200 price tag and our recommendation. We also really liked Hers topical solution with minoxidil but we left it off the list since it's included in the Hers hair growth kit we recommend - 100% a winning system for the money — and Rogaine's Minoxidil solution is top-notch, has a higher concentration of minoxidil at 5% and worth our recommendation.

Hair growth products for women FAQs

Do hair growth products really work?

“There are many effective hair regrowth treatments,” says Dr. Alan J. Bauman, hair transplant surgeon. However, that doesn’t mean success is guaranteed. “There is no miracle cure for hair loss, only treatments that optimize scalp health and improve/protect hair follicle function,” he says, adding that efficacy isn’t universal. “What will work best for each person will vary from patient to patient.”

Are hair growth products safe?

Prescriptions and other medicated products always carry the risk of side effects. Minoxidil, for example, can cause skin irritation when used topically. Even products with natural ingredients can cause some sensitivities, although it’s not as common.

Still, most hair regrowth products are considered safe for use as long as you follow the instructions. Regardless of the type of product you’re using, it’s important to talk to a doctor if you experience any side effects.

How long does it take to see results from hair growth products?

Depending on the product and the person using it, the time can vary. Some people may see improvement within a few weeks, while others may need upwards of six months. In general, though, most hair growth products take between three and six months to see results. The key is to use the product consistently and as instructed.

When should I talk to my doctor about my hair loss?

You should talk to a doctor if you experience sudden or excessive hair loss, bald patches or accompanying symptoms such as pain, redness, rash or itching on your scalp. If you are unsure which product is best for you, consulting a doctor is a great first step. Dr. Baumen tells us, "There are many effective hair regrowth treatments. What will work best for each person will vary from patient to patient. Everyone is unique and will need a consultation to determine an accurate diagnosis, treatment goals and to determine which treatment(s) will work best for them."

Meet our experts

Dr. Amy Taub, board-certified dermatologist

Dr. Andy Goren, board-certified dermatologist and trichologist

Dr. Glenn Vallecillos, MD Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Jodi LoGerfo, board-certified dermatologist

Dr. Michelle Henry, board-certified dermatologist and Mohs surgeon

Dr. Alan J. Bauman, hair transplant surgeon

Dr. Rekha Singh, board-certified dermatologist

Meerika Khanna, certified trichologist

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