Marketing Dominance of Natural Hair-Loss Products

No single natural or herbal hair-loss treatment sells as much as some of the most popular hair loss drugs - Propecia or Rogaine/Regaine. However, due to the sheer variety of natural hair-loss products, their combined sales might already exceed the sales of medicinal hair-loss treatments. The key to the growing popularity of natural products is a general belief that they are as effective as medicinal treatments but less expensive and do not carry the risk of negative side-effects. However, none of these claims seem be true.

There are far too many herbal and naturally-derived substances out there that are assumed to treat hereditary pattern baldness in humans but none of them has ever been clinically proven and independently verified in a statistically significant sample. Hence, no matter what the marketers of the natural hair-loss treatments say about the superior effectiveness of their products, you should take their word with a grain of salt. That does not automatically imply, though, that all natural hair-loss products are a scam. Natural treatments are a mix of numerous components that are suspected of promoting hair growth and they may work for some people but their mechanism of action is not known and their results usually vary significantly between patients.

Herbal and naturally-derived supplements have not been subjected to any rigorous clinical testing regarding their safety, either alone or in interactions with other substances, as medicinal drugs. Most plants and naturally-derived substances are only tested on rodents not on humans. In addition, increasing numbers of herbs and herbal products are becoming known for causing for nasty allergic reactions. Many marketers tell you that saw palmetto is as effective as finasteride in treating hair loss and that it can be used as its natural alternative. Its mode of action is to reduce the dihydrotestosterone (DHT) levels in your scalp, the same job finasteride is believed to do. However, saw palmetto is supposed to have no negative side-effects. Saw palmetto simply enjoys the best of both worlds; it is as effective as finasteride but as harmless as drinking tap water. A quick internet research turned up the following list of side-effects experienced by saw palmetto users: stomach pains and diarrhoea, severe bleeding in the stomach during saw palmetto use, allergic reactions, difficulty with erections, decline in sexual desire, testicular discomfort, breast tenderness and enlargement and a warning that saw palmetto extract is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breast-feeding because of its possible hormonal activity. This shows that herbal substances may not be so harmless after all.

And lastly the price comparison does not seem to speak in favour of natural hair-loss products, either. They happen to be amongst the most outrageously-overpriced hair-loss cures on the market. Sure, it is not easy to beat the price of cheap generic minoxidil. But why should you pay ten times more for the same generic minoxidil just because it comes in a fancy box with a few herbs and vitamins? Natural hair-loss products usually come as a complete treatment, consisting of topical and oral applications and a shampoo. You are advised to use the entire therapy, as the individual components complement each other. This obviously ensures very good profits for the manufacturer.