At what age can I start minoxidil?

Minoxidil is the popular and well established drug that’s mainly used to fight hair loss, but was originally founded to treat hypertension (high blood pressure). It’s available in a topical solution or foam, or as oral medication in the form of tablets.

Since it is so effective, a lot of people are currently using it, or are looking to hop on. This means they’re searching for information to figure out if it’s worth it, and if it’s safe and sound to do so.

So at what age can I start minoxidil? Let me answer that for you.




From what age can I start minoxidil?

Image of a prohibition sign with the number 18 in the middle indicating that it's banned under the age of 18.

It’s safe to start minoxidil from age 18 until the age of 65.

This is what a study in 2020 about the usage of minoxidil for hair disorders in pediatric patients had to say.

Topical minoxidil (TMX) is not FDA-approved in patients under 18 years old and there are no guidelines for its pediatric use.

Low-dose oral minoxidil (OMX) has been used off-label for hair loss treatment in adults expecting to achieve better therapeutic compliance and greater clinical efficacy.

This means that it is only considered safe by the FDA to use minoxidil from age 18 and onwards.

That’s not to say that you will get sick if you decide to start minoxidil sooner than age 18.

But it simply hasn’t been properly tested for that age population, which means it’s not FDA approved for that age category. That’s because we don’t exactly know whether it’s safe or not to use minoxidil for that age group, not because it’s necessarily unsafe.


At what age is minoxidil effective?

Technically, minoxidil should be effective at all ages as long as there are hair follicles present.

The reason it works so well is that it increases blood flow and consequently, the amount of nutrients it delivers to the hair follicles. Minoxidil prolongs the anagen phase, and shortens the telogen phase.

Thus, it works by speeding up the rest phase of the hair growth cycle, and by lengthening the hair growth stage.

It works best for people under the age of 40. But perhaps even more importantly is that it works considerably better when the hair loss is recent.

It does not fix complete baldness, and won’t work very well for receding hair lines since this is a sign of advanced hair loss.


At what age should I start using minoxidil?

Since it’s not FDA approved to use minoxidil before the age of 18, it’s up to your own judgment if you do decide to apply it if you’re younger than 18. But it’s deemed safe from age 18-65.

Technically speaking, it should work just fine, even when you’re not 18 yet. Especially since you’re still young, and your hair loss is probably fairly recent. However, not enough research has been performed on the -18 population to deem it completely safe.

For those who are 18 and older, I would start utilizing minoxidil as quickly as you start noticing hair loss. The more recent your hair loss, the bigger the chance that the product will be efficient at slowing down, and even regrowing lost hair.

But keep in mind that hair loss typically doesn’t start until later on in life. This means that 18 and younger is quite early to start balding. Therefore, it can be a sign of another underlying medical condition such as alopecia areata rather than male or female pattern baldness.


Is it too early to use minoxidil?

It can only be considered too early to use minoxidil when you’re under the age of 18 since it’s not FDA approved for that specified group of people.

Otherwise, you should start using minoxidil as quickly as possible when you first notice you’re losing hair. Some hair loss is normal, seeing as everyone sheds hair as it’s a naturally occurring process. But when you detect that you’re losing more hair than you’re replacing, then you should hop on minoxidil as quickly as possible to stave off any further hair loss.

The main reason for starting right after you first observe any signs of balding is that it’s easier to slow down or halt hair loss than it is regrowing lost hair.

Consequently, this means that minoxidil will be much less efficient when the balding is already at an advanced stage.


Can a 14-year-old use minoxidil

Illustration of the number 14 on a black background.

Since minoxidil is only FDA approved for people of age 18 and above, 14 years old would be too young to start using it. There is simply not enough evidence regarding its safety since modern research is lacking on such a young population.

However, we do know that it’s considered safe for those of us who are 18 and older since it’s FDA approved for that age bracket.

It should work just fine for a 14-year-old person. However, it’s very rare for someone so young to be balding or suffering from hair loss already. If you are suffering hair loss at that age, then it’s most likely not due to male or female pattern baldness.

Thus, minoxidil might not be the best solution nor effective at all for the condition you’re suffering from. It’s most likely an indicator that you’re suffering from an underlying medical condition that you should get checked out ASAP.




Can I use minoxidil if im 16?

You can’t use minoxidil if you’re 16 or younger.

It’s FDA approved from age 18 and above. This means that it’s not viewed as being safe for a 16-year-old to use minoxidil. It might be, but not enough research has been performed for that specific population to deem it so.

Its effectiveness would probably be the same, or even higher than for someone age 18 or older.

But to be suffering from hair loss at such a young age might indicate that it’s not progressive hair loss occurring, but rather an underlying health condition that’s flaring up.

If it’s due to a medical condition, then minoxidil might not be as effective, or not work at all in some instances.


Can a 17-year-old use minoxidil

From a technical standpoint, 17 years of age is too soon to start using minoxidil.

It can still be efficient to combat hair loss depending on the cause, but it isn’t FDA approved yet to start applying at that age.




Can 18-year-olds use minoxidil?

Yes, 18-year-olds can use minoxidil safely and without worry!

18 is the earliest age that the FDA currently deems safe and appropriate to start using minoxidil to treat hair loss.

Still, one should only start applying minoxidil when they first begin seeing hair loss. And most folks will not start balding at the young age of 18 nor for many more years to come.

Nevertheless, it’s of utmost importance that you start using minoxidil as soon as you notice that you’re losing hair, even if you’re just 18. It’s much easier to stave off and/or halt hair loss than regrowing hair that’s lost.


Should I use minoxidil at 18 for beard growth?

Picture of a bearded man looking out of a window

While the use of minoxidil is FDA approved to combat hair loss from age 18 and onwards, it is not FDA approved to use it to grow a beard or facial hair of any kind at any age.

That’s why I consider it a personal choice whether or not you start using it in an attempt to grow a beard.

But from anecdotal experience and what I hear from other people, it is usually effective to grow a beard, and many do so without having serious adverse reactions, or any at all.

Speaking of personal experience, it worked very well for me, with only minimal side effects. The only detrimental effect I ever experienced was that the minoxidil solution dried out my skin on several occasions. This was treatable by putting a lotion for dry skin on my face, but was still an annoying side effect.

This all went away after I switched over to minoxidil foam, which tends to dry out the skin to a much lesser degree since there’s no propylene glycol in the foam. Propylene glycol acts as a solvent, which increases the absorption rate of the skin by making it easier to be absorbed. I haven’t had any issues or side effects after switching over to the foam, which is great.


Does minoxidil work after 40?

Illustration of the quote, “it's never too late” written on a background.

Minoxidil can work after the age of 40, but it will depend on some factors. But generally speaking, there’s no reason why minoxidil wouldn’t work for someone who’s 40 or older.

The main factor deciding how well it works would be how long the hair loss has been going on before hopping on minoxidil.

If the hair loss has been going on for a long time, then it will most likely be less efficacious than if you started sooner.

Even so, it’s still worth a shot even if your hair loss is at an advanced stage. You never know how well you respond to the product until you try it for yourself.


Final note

Minoxidil is FDA approved to treat hair loss starting from age 18, until the age of 65.

It is not FDA approved at any age to use it for facial hair growth.

Notwithstanding, that doesn’t mean that minoxidil can’t work well earlier than age 18, or that it can’t be used to grow a beard or any other facial hair for that matter. It’s just that there’s too little evidence to deem it safe and efficacious due to the limited amount of research being done in that particular age bracket.

For me personally, I can say that it worked great to grow facial hair. The only little, yet bothering side effect I experienced was that the solution tended to dry out my skin a bit. This was totally resolved after I switched over to foam. I didn’t start my minoxidil journey until I was already 25. So I can’t say much from personal experience about the age limitations that are presently placed on minoxidil.

That’s why you should use your own sound judgment if you wish to do so anyway. And that can only be accomplished by looking at the current empirical evidence, employing common sense, rational reasoning, and by comparing the potential risks and rewards.