Does Rogaine Cause Wrinkles?

Categories: Anti-aging, Hair Loss
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rogaine wrinklesDoes the hair loss treatment Rogaine (Minoxidil is the active ingredient and generic name) cause wrinkles and accelerated aging? Can you imagine anything worse than trying to prevent hair loss, only to find out you’re permanently causing the formation of new wrinkles and dark circles under your eyes? I can’t! What a nightmare!!! I’ve been dealing with hair loss for about 8 years now, and while my hair loss was pretty stable, lately it’s getting worse and I’m back to freaking out about it constantly.

My hair loss issues and use of Rogaine
Here is my hair loss story, which I wrote a few years ago. I had tried 2% Women’s Rogaine a few years back, and used it twice a day for 8 months, but I didn’t see any improvement in my hair, so I gave up. I didn’t have any side effects from it, except for a flaky scalp. At the time I thought I was just experiencing chronic non-permanent hair loss (Telogen Effluvium) due to either a low thyroid, low iron, poor absorption of nutrients, or some other mystery reason. It’s crazy that I’ve been researching hair loss for so long and have seen countless doctors but none of them know anything.

Most recently, I’ve experienced thinning temples and I think my hairline is receding, so I’m starting to realize the fact that both of my parents have thin hair probably means I also have genetic hair loss (Androgenetic Alopecia). So last week I started on 5% Men’s Minoxidil (it should be safe for women if you are not pregnant, trying to get pregnant, or are nursing, but you should talk to your doctor first). Actually what I bought was Spectral DNC, which is like Men’s Rogaine, but it also contains Aminexil, Retinol, Copper Peptides, and some other ingredients that supposedly promote hair loss, and unlike Rogaine, it doesn’t contain alcohol. The alcohol in Rogaine caused my scalp to get dry and flaky. Ugh.

Since the day I started on the Spectral DNC, I’ve had a low-grade headache. Headaches are a possible side effect of Minoxidil, probably due to the fact that it lowers blood pressure. Even though you just spray Minoxidil on your head, the ingredients can be absorbed systemically to some degree. The fact that a topical solution is giving me headaches is a pretty good indicator of that. There are some other possible rare but severe systemic side effects from Spectral DNC, as well as from Rogaine. I was looking up when/if the headache would go away on Google, and I discovered all of these people talking about Rogaine causing accelerated aging, wrinkles, enlarged pores, dark circles, and bags under the eyes. OMG! The horror! Do I want to be bald or do I want a face full of wrinkles? I know thinning hair and massive wrinkles run in my family, so I definitely can’t rely on good genes to help me out.

Does science show Rogaine causes wrinkles?
I spent hours trying to track down scientific studies that show the link between Minoxidil and aging. Apparently Minoxidil can cause a degradation of skin’s collagen, which is what would probably cause the accelerated aging. From what I’ve read, the studies used a much higher concentration of Minoxidil than you would apply daily, and I haven’t found any studies that actually test applying topical Rogaine and studying the results on people’s skin. Skin problems are not listed as any of the side effects on the packaging of Rogaine or Spectral DNC. All I know is that a bunch of random people on the internet are reporting problems. Maybe these people are obsessed with their hair, like I am, and they now also spend more time looking at their faces in the mirror, and they just didn’t notice the wrinkles that have always been there, but I doubt that’s the case most of the time.

Now what?
Now normally I wouldn’t completely trust some random people on the internet, but what if it’s true??? The problem with wrinkles is that they’re really hard to get rid of. That’s why I spend so much time talking about prevention. Maybe your skin would improve a little bit if you stopped the Rogaine, but wrinkles are usually pretty permanent. I don’t know if I’m willing to take that chance?? But I don’t want to be bald either. When I was using the 2% Rogaine, I didn’t notice that I had an increase in wrinkles, but some days I’ll look in the mirror and think I look 50, while other days I think I look 25. But overall, I don’t recall a dramatic change. A lot of people don’t report the increase in skin problems for at least a year of use, though. With Rogaine, if it works, you need to use it forever or you will lose the new hair/thicker hair that you gained, so that’s a lot of potential wrinkles, if it really does cause them.

At this point I’m still freaking out and don’t know what to do. A rational person would quit the Minoxidil because of the headaches. But I’m not rational – I’m desperate for hair and nice skin. Maybe I will cut back to just once a day, even though the directions say you must use it twice a day. Maybe I will just test one very small patch of my hair for the next few months – just to see if it even works on my hair. If I don’t see any results, I will quit using it again. If I see results, then I’ll be at a crossroads – risk wrinkles for thicker hair? If the headaches never go away, I will probably have to stop using it anyway, or I may quit the Spectral DNC and pick up some 5% Rogaine to see if that reduces the headaches. Finally, when applying Rogaine, make sure to let it dry before geting into bed, to prevent it from getting on your pillow and then getting onto your face. Also make sure you wipe away any extra if it drips onto your forehead, and wash your hands with soap and water after applying the solution.

I know a lot of people don’t feel comfortable talking about hair loss because it’s so upsetting, but have you used Rogaine? If so, have you seen a negative impact on your skin? What are you doing to treat your hair loss?

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23 Responses to “Does Rogaine Cause Wrinkles?”

  1. Paula Says:

    I started using Rogaine a few months ago and haven’t noticed any wrinkles but you have be nervous. I haven’t noticed much new hair yet either but I know it can take a long time to see results.

  2. Rachel Says:

    Not sure if you’ve heard of it, but apparently massaging some essential oils into the scalp daily leads to hair growth…have you tried this? It seems to be pretty effective for some.

  3. josh - hair loss treatment solutions Says:

    Hi, nice posting .. have you ever heard about green tea for hair loss problem ?
    Green tea has been known for its ability to enhance health and lose weight. This natural anti-oxidant rich plant has lots of advantages for us. There are always new researches to find new advantages of green tea. Now the research on green tea has spread to the science branch of skin and hair. Now experts are researching on green tea for anti hair loss. Some of the results they found are that consuming green tea can aid to stop hair loss.

  4. Hair Fall Solution Says:

    It is cool site. Eat a healthy diet. Hair is 95% protein and eating a diet with plenty of vitamins and proteins will not only make your hair look healthy but will help you to keep it.

  5. Gaby Says:

    Have you tried looking at your diet. There are also other things like msm, horsetail, and biotin supplements that help not only with hair but your skin and nails as well. Do a bit a research.

  6. Cara Says:

    I’ve heard green tea can help with hair loss as well as wrinkles, but something that I have discovered is the antioxidants, like blueberries, acai, and even tomatoes to help significantly with anti-aging. And for healthier hair I have never thought about diet, but just as it is with skin care, I am sure that will help. Thanks for the tips!

  7. Brown_eyes Says:

    Hi, I’ve been using Minox almost a year now, and it really helped. The first 3 months my hair was shedding a tons, but after that it grows nicely.
    I also noticed dark circles under my eyes and I just found out after researching in the internet that it probably because of Minox
    But, my dark circles is reducing now, because I’m using cream from my skin doctor (it contains some Pine Bark Extract, Vit. C, Vit. B5, and Dynalift) and a pack of ice in the morning.
    If you ask me whether to have hair loss or wrinkles + dark eyes, I prefer the last, because the effect is not major, and you can always prevent that by using creams, botox, skin laser, etc…but Hair loss? only Minox that I know effective for my case. (I had used aminexil from Kerastase without much effect)

  8. Samuel Says:

    Have you ladies tried the foam formula. The foam formula does not contain propylene glycol which happens to be a skin irritant and can cause wrinkles as the greasy formula runs down your face. The foam is (http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/1936835) propylene glycol free and you can probably avoid the skin problems, not sure if you can stay away from the itchy scalp issue though.

  9. Jeni - Savvy Skin Says:

    I haven’t ever heard of propylene glycol causing wrinkles, but I know it does cause an allergic reaction for some people, so it’s good to know the foam version of Rogaine doesn’t contain that ingredient. From what I’ve read, it’s the actual active ingredient minoxidil, though, that is the wrinkle-causing culprit.

  10. Janti Basu Says:

    After Minoxidil hair tonic my skins pores became enlarged and dark rings formed around my eyes. 2 years later and this is still there and wrinkles.

  11. B Says:

    Be reassured: I have begun using topical Rogaine, and have looked into the details. The levels you get from topical use are much lower than the oral dose and are 2 ng/mL or lower (which = 0.0095 uMol/L) even at the 5% dose, and even with multiple daily applications. [Ref: AHFS Monograph, Medscape on Minoxidil topical pharmacokinetics]

    Meanwhile, the minimum dose required to suppress lysyl hydroxylase in fibroblasts (the cells and enzyme it inhibits in collagen synthesis) is 25 uMol/L (Br J Derm 2004; 150, 186-194) or over 2600 times the blood concentration you develop.

    Even very rare individuals who have abnormally high absorption through skin found to have 30ng/mL in the blood would still need 173 times the concentration they have to inhibit collagen synthesis in skin fibroblasts. And remember, skin concentrations outside of the area of application don’t have the level of drug found in the blood.

    This is further evidenced by the fact that when dermatologists initially saw a few studies noting such collagen effects, it was theorized that direct application of minoxidil onto skin might help prevent scarring from collagen formation. Minoxidil failed to prevent such scarring from collagen formation, even where minoxidil was directly applied, because in part it is believed to inhibit a version of the enzyme which is not as critical to collagen cross linking in the first place. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15908192)

  12. Moi Says:

    I used Rogaine 5% foam and it ruined my face. I always had youthful skin, but this made my eyes puffy, my pores gaping, my skin haggard. I quit and I am looking much healthier again. It doesn’t happen to everyone. You won’t know until you try.

  13. Skin care in delhi-Clinic Dermatech Says:

    Rogaine does affect your skin & cause Wrinkles on the face of a person.

  14. Connie Says:

    I used it for 4 or 5 months and I started to see serious bags under my eyes and my skin was not looking so hot. I quit yesterday. I’m now trying to get rid of the bags by using Vitamin E. I’m so mad about this shit because I never had bags under my eyes until I started using this garbage. They tell you all you get is a dry scalp but that’s not a lie. I knew it was too good to be true! Find another way to get your hair to grow back, cause using Rogaine is not worth it!

  15. Gillian Says:

    I tried 5% foam for six weeks when I did start noticing skin effects – suddenly I was developing wrinkles under my eyes and my skin didn’t look all that healthy. I stopped and those wrinkles went away. I decided to discontinue Rogaine. I wore a hairpiece instead. I wasn’t about to pay to look older and haggard.

  16. dave Says:

    just shave your head.. the ladies love it..

  17. Anth Says:

    After two months, I am noticing my skin looking a bit haggard. Skin around eyes has become a little saggy, and minor dark circles have formed. Im going to stop Minox. after I finish this last bottle and switch to Propecia.

  18. Misty Says:

    After only 5 weeks of using minoxidil my eyes were puffy, eyelids puffy, wrinkles (and i get botox). I couldn’t understand it! I googled and found loads of comments from people with the same problem. I immediately stopped. I can’t believe this is happening and I pray to God that my symptoms are reversed!~

  19. Josh Says:

    I came across the this page via google ironically finding it after buying minox to try for a second time. I’m a bloke… a few years ago I used Minox for about a year.

    I never made the connection but my partner said I aged 10 years and looked like a junkie – wrinkles, droopy eyelids & dark bags (yep facebook pic confirm this). I just thought I was tired but in the end I had no flesh under my facial skin so I was drawn & haggard looking. My colleagues at my work joked about that I looked like a junkie, and I did. I luckily stopped using it as it itched and caused dandruff. And 2 1/2 years on my face has flesh back on it and colleagues are asking whats happened (in a good way), so it wasn’t a period of natural aging. Coincidence?

    I never made the connection & assumed I was just having an aging spurt until yesterday I bought minox again and then came across this debate. Even as a bloke who should be manly and have the wrinkles from experience, theres no way I’m using it as i looked plain haggard – never a good look. [on that topic, I should say most men of all ages love the fine lines on their partners faces so stop worrying about them]

    Minox may not effect everyone, but if you have these signs please beware!

  20. Frank Says:

    I used Minoxidil foam (5%) for 10 days when I noticed I started to get serious bags below my eyes. You could also notice the structure of the skin below the eyes was changed a bit. Like you have had to much sun. I Quit using the stuff immediately but the damage was done. Specially when I have consumed a couple of glasses of wine the bags are swollen like grazy the next morning.

    I massage the bags gently every morning and evening with a moisturizing gel. This helps to keep the swelling to a minimum and to revitalize the skin. Now, after 4 months, the swelling is a lot less and it seems the skin is getting better each week..

  21. Jenny Says:

    I’ve been using Rogain for several years now. I never realized large pores all over my face and puffy eyes were from the Rogain although I don’t think I had them before Rogain, and I certainly did not always have those issues. It has worked to re-grow my hair although I’ve noticed recently that it is not working as well. Also, you should know that Rogain will not just cause hair growth on your head. I grieved when I realized I was trading the hair growth on my head for hair in other placed on my body that I didn’t used to have like on my face and arms and so many other places. You will have to do alot more grooming which totally sucks! I used Nioxin 1 before the Rogain and had good results until I stopped using for a month, and then it stopped working completely, that is the reason why I”m using rogain now. Some time has gone by and the Rogain is not working as well, so I decided to try to combine them both (Rogain and Nioxin) it seemed to help to stop the fall out for a while, but now I’m noticing hair loss again. I’m not doing more research to know what to do next and that is how I found your site. I’m thinking of weening myself off the Rogain because of the hair loss as well as issues with increasing dark hair growing on my face. I heard that will go away if I stop Rogain. Someone also said that Nioxin works best if you wash your hair with it frequently, so if I get off the Rogain, I will wash my hair more often with Nioxin 4 and see if that helps. I hope that you find a solution. This situation is grievous for all of us who go through it.

  22. Jessica Says:

    For me it causes sudden deep lines under my eyes and the veins on my hands to bulge out. I was 27, and had perfect unlined skin. I started Rogaine in September and by mid-December I had my first wrinkles under the eyes. That is kind of quick don’t you think. I had perfect light natural blond hair. And a lot of it. My hair used to be my best feature. Now I’m embarassed of it. I hate choosing between my hair and my skin. But there is nothing worse for me than having a ruined face.

    When I use Rogaine, people think I’m in my thirties. When I don’t I have people think I’m about 20 years old all the time. I am 31.

  23. Marlene Says:

    The product you named contains 4.5% minoxidil. The highest recommended dosage for women is 2%. I just don’t get people who misuse products and then are unhappy with the results.

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