Is Biotin Shampoo Effective?23.12.2021
For years, biotin has been a highly sought-after ingredient in beauty, particularly when it comes to skin, hair, and nails. It’s usually taken orally as an oral supplement to promote hair growth and strengthen hair. However, biotin-based haircare products, also known as “biotin shampoos,” are making their way onto drugstore shelves. We reached out to dermatologists for their opinions on whether or not biotin shampoos work.
How can biotin benefit hair?
First, let’s take a look at what biotin actually is. It is also known as vitamin B7 and plays an important role in several metabolic processes within our bodies.
Blair Murphy-Rose M.D. is a board-certified dermatologist with Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York. Although biotin deficiencies are rare, [oral] biotin supplementation can be helpful if you have hair problems.
If you have thinning hair or a vitamin deficiency, biotin can be combined with other vitamins to help you. This could help stimulate hair growth and strengthen your strands.
Dr. Murphy-Rose says that there is no evidence that biotin supplements or any other form of topical biotin improve hair quality, growth, and/or appearance in people with normal levels.
Is biotin shampoo effective for hair growth?
Biotin shampoos are infused with biotin and applied topically on your hair and scalp. The data available so far is limited and it’s unclear if biotin shampoo actually works.
Hadley King M.D. is a New York City-based dermatologist who says that topically applied biotin can strengthen existing strands, minimize splits, and reduce breakage. The formulas have been formulated for fine, thin hair so they can promote thicker hair without or with biotin.
Dr. Murphy-Rose agrees, pointing out that there isn’t much data to support the claim that biotin shampoos (or any other topical biotin) can improve hair quality, growth or appearance.
Also, these shampoos can be left on the scalp for a very short time and then rinsed off. This means that the ingredients won’t penetrate the skin and get to work at the follicle level. They are still worth trying. These shampoos can help make your hair thicker and more healthy.
Is it safe to use biotin shampoo every day?
Biotin shampoo can be used every day, so there is no reason to not use it. However, if you don’t have a particularly oily scalp, keep in mind that experts don’t recommend daily hair-washing–regardless of shampoo type. Too often shampooing can strip your natural oils from your hair, causing significant damage and drying out your hair.
Do you have any other options for hair growth?
We don’t have enough scientific data to support the use of biotin shampoo for hair strength or growth. Although promising results may be forthcoming, they are not yet available.
We believe that you should use volumizing products that temporarily enhance the appearance of your hair, and oral or topical treatments with a stronger scientific track record that deliver long-term results. These include:
- Topical Minoxidil
Rogaine’s key ingredient is Minoxidil. Dr. King claims it’s the best over-the-counter option for men and women. She explains that Minoxidil is a potassium channel opening agent, which causes hyperpolarization of cell membranes. Theoretically, it opens potassium channels and widens blood vessels, allowing more oxygen, blood, and nutrients to reach the follicles.
His and Hers sell minoxidil solution drops in 5% and 33% concentrations, respectively. Bosley MD sells a Women’s Hair Growth Treatment with Minoxidil (40). ulta.com offers a 5% concentration.
- Hormonal Prescriptions
Thinning of female patterned hair, also known as “androgenetic hair loss”, is due to hormones and hair follicles’ sensitivity to hormones. These things are genetically determined and we don’t have much control over them. A prescription from your doctor may be able to correct this. Dr. King states that hormonal prescription drugs, such as oral contraceptives or spironolactone can make the hair thicker.
- Holistic Supplements
Telogen effluvium, or temporary hair loss, can sometimes be caused by poor diet, stress or major changes in our lives. One example: The pandemic has caused temporary hair loss to increase, possibly due to the increased stress levels. Telogen effluvium is also common in women who have recently given birth.
A conversation with your doctor is the best way to develop a customized treatment plan. However, a holistic approach can also be beneficial. This means that you need to find ways to relax and eat well as taking vitamins and supplements to nourish your body.
Dr. King says that Viviscal and Nutrafol are hair supplements that have shown statistically significant results. “Nutrafol includes ingredients that have anti-inflammatory, stress-adaptogenic, antioxidant and dihydrotestosterone-inhibiting properties. This combination is thought to address multiple causes of hair loss.
Biotin shampoos can be used as needed, but they shouldn’t be your mainstay. Focus on fuller hair by using volumizing products. These products contain proven ingredients that encourage growth and strength.
Talking to your doctor is a great idea if you have concerns about hair loss and hair thinning. You can work together to develop a plan for addressing the problem, which is much more common than most people realize.