Best HRT for Hair Loss: Everything You Need to Know

Best HRT for Hair Loss Everything You Need to Know

According to the American Hair Loss Association, women constitute 40% of individuals experiencing hair loss in the United States of America (USA). Hair loss remains a pressing issue, with both men and women suffering from hair thinning, low hair density, and hair shedding. It can happen due to a variety of reasons, including hormonal imbalances in the body.  

One potential solution is to use Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) to correct the hormonal imbalance causing hair loss. HRT can improve hair growth in men and women by adjusting the levels of reproductive hormones in the body that are responsible for hair fall and balding. 

This article explores the benefits associated with HRT, considers the best HRT for hair loss, compares HRT with other treatments, and provides a way forward to start with your HRT treatment.

Women Suffering Hair loss in USA by Proportion
Data Source: American Hair Loss Association

What is Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) for Hair Growth?

What is Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) for Hair Growth

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is used to treat hormone-related issues in both men and women. For women, HRT is used for various hormonal issues, including menopausal symptoms, hot flashes, and bone density loss by administering estrogen and progesterone. 

In men, it is mainly used to control testosterone imbalances and address any related symptoms. Depending on health conditions and doctor recommendations, HRT for hair growth can be administered flexibly through pills, injections, and creams.

How Does HRT for Hair Loss Work?

HRT is also effective in controlling hair loss for men and women, especially when the underlying cause is hormonal imbalance. For women, a fluctuation in estrogen or progesterone levels is due to menopause or polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). 

These conditions can trigger a considerable reduction in estrogen and progesterone levels leading to a rise in androgens that are male hormones present in both men and women. 

For men, a similar androgen imbalance can occur due to a fluctuation in dihydrotestosterone (DHT) levels. This overdose of androgens can negatively affect the hair growth cycle, leading to hair thinning and in some cases, severe hair fall as well.

Types of Hair Loss Caused by Hormones

There are several types of hair loss specifically caused by different hormonal activities. These include the following:

  • Androgenetic Alopecia: This is more commonly known as male/female pattern baldness. It is caused by abnormal levels of hormones. specifically DHT (a category of testosterone). This can harm the hair follicles, disrupt the hair growth cycle, and lead to hair loss and associated issues.
  • Telogen Effluvium: This condition is characterized by mostly temporary hair shedding. It can be triggered due to various reasons, including menopause and pregnancy among other reasons by disturbing the hair growth cycles. 
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): PCOS is characterized by irregular menstrual cycles in women which can also lead to hair loss. This condition leads to hair reduction on the scalp with similar symptoms as male pattern baldness.
  • Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism: Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) and Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) relate to thyroid hormones with both conditions leading to hair loss. Thyroid hormones manage the metabolic system in the body which includes the hair growth cycle leading to hair loss when the system is disturbed.

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Benefits of HRT for Hair Growth

HRT for hair growth can prove beneficial for hair loss and hair thinning by controlling the hormonal surplus or deficiency in men and women. HRT has several benefits including improving hair strength, reducing hair loss, improving scalp health, and emotional wellness.

Improved Hair Growth

HRT can improve hair growth by positively adjusting the hair growth cycle and expanding the hair growth phase (also called anagen). Moreover, HRT can reduce hair loss by controlling the androgen level that negatively impacts hair follicles. 

Similarly, HRT can improve hair density by ensuring oxygen and nutrients are passed on to hair follicles. Lastly, HRT also plays an important role in reducing shedding, especially if triggered by a hormonal imbalance such as in Telogen Effluvium.

Better Scalp Health

Scalp health is also improved if you go for the best HRT for hair loss treatment. HRT for hair growth provides more oxygen and nourishment to hair follicles and strengthens their function. Similarly, HRT is also beneficial in stabilizing hair patches and hair loss patterns by controlling the hormonal activity that triggers it. 

HRT can also be used to recover balding areas by improving dormant hair follicles on the scalp. Oil production (such as that of sebum) is also improved with HRT allowing for a healthy scalp that is not too try or too oily.

Enhanced Wellness

HRT can enhance physical and emotional well-being by improving hair growth and scalp health. Many people become self-conscious if they start losing hair, especially if they are already suffering from a medical illness. 

By controlling hormones and hair loss, HRT can address self-esteem issues effectively, improving their overall quality of life. HRT also supports transgender women undergoing gender transformation by allowing them to embrace their preferred identity. 

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Hormone Therapy for Hair Loss: Who is it Best for? 

Hormone Therapy for Hair Loss is a popular method for hair loss for men, women, and transgenders as it is used to address hormonal changes due to various medical reasons. 

The following individuals can utilize HRT for hair loss:

  • Menopausal women: Menopausal women may experience a reduction in estrogen and progesterone levels leading to hair thinning and hair fall. HRT for hair loss can be administered to menopausal women to improve hair health by balancing hormonal activity. 
  • Transgender persons: Transgenders undergoing hormonal therapy can be affected by male pattern baldness due to changes in male and female hormone levels. HRT can prove to be beneficial, especially for transgender women (male-to-female) to counter baldness and transition to feminine hair (density and hairline).  
  • Postpartum women: Women can suffer from hair thinning and hair loss after childbirth due to considerable changes in the hormonal level and activity. HRT for hair growth can be used to balance the postpartum hormonal activity, depending on her condition and the doctor’s recommendation
  • Men with hormone-related hair loss: Men experiencing hormone-related hair loss such as abnormal levels of testosterone can also experience hair reduction. HRT can be beneficial for men by balancing testosterone levels and improving hair health. 
  • Individuals using Hormone Blocker Treatment:  Consumption of potent medication when undergoing hormone blocker treatment can cause hair loss as a side effect. In these cases, hair regrowth HRT can be used to balance hormonal activity and improve hair growth and density with the doctor’s approval.

Best HRT for Hair Loss: Exploring the Options

Several hormone therapies for hair loss can treat your hair fall and improve your hair strength. These HRTs include Estrogen HRT, Progesterone HRT, a combination of both, and testosterone blockers. You might wonder, ‘Which HRT is best for hair loss’. Well, each HRT has its benefits and is mostly combined to maximize the impact of this treatment.

Which HRT is best for hair loss

Estrogen HRT

Estrogen HRT decreases the level of androgens in your body which are responsible for hair loss and weakness. Using Estrogen HRT can help you counter hair fall associated with hormonal imbalances and make the hair thick and healthy again. 

Estrogen HRT is most commonly administered to menopausal women who may suffer from reduced estrogen levels causing flashes and osteoporosis. This HRT for hair loss can be used in various forms, including tablets, gels, and suppositories depending on your health condition.

Progesterone HRT

Progesterone HRT is another common treatment that is used to treat hair fall by balancing the androgen levels in your body. This therapy is most effective for women who are suffering from an excess of estrogen, a condition commonly known as estrogen dominance. 

By using Progesterone HRT, the dominant impact of estrogen can be balanced out, leading to improved scalp health and hair growth. This therapy can be administered by injections, vaginal suppositories, and oral form (tablet/pills).

Combination HRT

A collective HRT hair loss treatment, combining Estrogen HRT and Progesterone HRT, is also commonly used to address hair-related problems. This is mostly used for women without a hysterectomy and balances any excess estrogen that can damage the uterus. 

By using progesterone with estrogen, the androgen levels in the body are balanced effectively, leading to improved hair health and reduced hair thinning. Similarly, by using estrogen, the hair growth phase is also expanded providing a longer window for the hair to grow and thicken.

Testosterone Blockers

Testosterone blockers, also commonly known as anti-androgens, are used to treat hair thinning when the underlying cause is excess androgens. This therapy balances the androgens in your body reducing their negative impact on hair follicles. 

The most common testosterone blockers include finasteride and spironolactone, which are administered orally and often combined with other HRT therapies. These androgen blockers can be effectively used for men, women, and transgenders to control their androgen levels and improve hair growth.

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HRT for Hair Loss: Potential Side Effects and Risks 

Potential Side Effects and Risks 

There are several side effects and risks associated with HRT for hair growth that you need to be aware of. Being a therapy that impacts hormonal levels in men and women, it can cause some common side effects such as nausea, weight gain, and mood swings. Similarly, HRT may also cause some long-term risks, including cardiovascular diseases and different types of cancer. 

Common Side Effects

Common side effects include non-serious and short-term impacts associated with HRT. Nausea and bloating are common at the start of hair regrowth HRT as the body adjusts to the changing hormonal levels. HRT can also impact mood and even cause mental health problems like depression and anxiety due to hormonal changes. Depending on body type and genetics, many people also gain weight after using HRT. 

A more serious side-effect is blood clotting which is associated with estrogen HRT adversely impacting liver and other bodily functions. Women may also experience irregular menstrual cycles due to adjustment of reproductive hormones (estrogen, progesterone). Some people may also experience headaches and migraines as a side-effect of HRT. 

Long-term Risks

Several long-term risks are also associated with HRT, one of them being cardiovascular or heart problems. Individuals may become more prone to suffering from heart attacks or strokes due to the administration of HRT. 

Similarly, HRT may also cause several kinds of cancers in the long term, including breast cancer, endometrial cancer, and ovarian cancer. These are more common in women undergoing HRT for a longer duration especially those who are using estrogen HRT and combination therapies.

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Who Should Avoid HRT for Hair Growth?

While beneficial in curing hair fall and improving hair density and overall hair health, HRT should be avoided if you have an existing medical condition or a long history of illnesses. Patients with a history of cancers (especially ovarian or breast cancer) should avoid HRT may cause tumors. Similarly, people with a history of blood clotting and blood pressure should also exercise caution when administering HRT for hair growth as it may cause blood clotting or hypertension. 

Patients with cardiovascular diseases and liver problems should also avoid HRT as it can have negative effects on their health. Lastly, pregnant women should also avoid using HRT as it may adversely impact the fetus’s health.

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Comparing HRT with Other Hair Loss Treatments

Depending on your medical history, present health conditions, and doctor’s recommendation, there can be other hair loss treatments that may be used either in place of or with HRT to counter hair loss.


Medications are among the most prevalent methods for addressing hair loss and hair-related issues in both men and women. Compared to HRT, these medicines do address hair fall effectively; however, HRT is more successful when the underlying cause is hormonal imbalance. 

Two main medicines are used to counter hair loss:

  • Minoxidil improves scalp health by increasing the blood flow to hair follicles, resulting in reduced hair fall. It can be used by both men and women and can be consumed without a prescription. While Minoxidil controls hair loss and improves hair strength, it needs to be regularly consumed for a long period for ideal results. 
  • Finasteride, an FDA-approved drug for hair loss, controls hair fall by reducing the conversion of testosterone to DHT. As the hormonal balance is restored in your body, it can lead to improved hair growth and reduced hair thinning. It is a prescription-only drug and is mostly prescribed to men who are experiencing male pattern baldness and hair fall.

Natural Remedies

Natural remedies are another popular alternative to HRT to cure hair loss. These can include a wide variety of herbal items like oils (rosemary, coconut), tea (green tea), and minerals (Zinc). Other natural remedies include supplements like (Vitamin D, and Biotin) and wellness exercises like scalp massaging. Natural remedies’ limited side effects make them ideal for individuals looking for natural treatments. 

Natural remedies can also be combined with other treatments like hair regrowth HRT to enhance the effectiveness of all cures.

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Surgical Options

Surgical Options Hair Transplant

Surgical options are also used to treat hair loss depending on the severity and preference of affected individuals. One common method is hair transplants that move hair follicles from one part of the body to areas where they are needed. The main benefit of hair transplants is that the solution is permanent with hair growing naturally after the process is completed.

Like other surgical procedures, success may vary depending on the donor’s hair availability and other genetical factors. Contrasted with hair loss and HRT, surgical options can be more expensive and dependent on complicated factors like hair donor match for success. Other surgical options such as scalp reduction, red light therapy, and microneedling are also commonly used. 

Hair Loss and HRT: How to Get Started 

Being proactive and assessing your hair health can help you decide timely about potential treatments to address hair loss. 

Evaluate Hair Health 

You can begin by evaluating your hair health by looking at the density, frequency, and pattern of hair loss. If you are already affected by a medical condition such as menopause or abnormal testosterone levels, it can also be a potential reason for hair fall. Similarly, other factors such as diet, genetics, routine, medication, and family history can also contribute to hair thinning and hair-related problems.  

Consult a Healthcare Provider

After your initial assessment, it is recommended to reach out to a healthcare provider who is well-reputed in the best HRT for hair loss. Begin the session by openly discussing your medical and family history with your healthcare provider, specifically mentioning everything related to hair loss. It is also important to discuss your expectations from the treatment and understand any long-term issues that you may encounter.

Tests and Treatments 

Post-consultation with your doctor, you can undergo screening and diagnostic tests to understand potential reasons for your hair loss, hair thinning, and hair fall. After assessing your test reports, your doctor can decide whether HRT is the best treatment to cure your hair loss. If HRT is considered appropriate, you can expect a detailed plan about the HRT hair regrowth process including dietary and lifestyle changes. 

Once HRT has begun, make sure to follow up regularly with your healthcare provider, especially if you feel any side effects. It is also important to stay patient while undergoing HRT as it can take some before any prominent results.

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Key Takeaways

  • Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is an effective way to treat hair loss in both and women by balancing the hormone level. 
  • People suffering from medical conditions including menopause, postpartum, hormone-related problems, and pregnancy can use HRT to counter hair loss. 
  • Benefits of HRT include improved hair strength, reduced hair fall, better emotional and mental well-being, and improved scalp health. 
  • Different types of HRTs are available including estrogen HRT, progesterone HRT, and testosterone blockers.
  • There can be short-term side effects (nausea, bloating, migraines) and long-term risks (cardiovascular diseases and different types of cancers) with HRT. 
  • Compared to other hair loss treatments such as medication, natural remedies, and surgeries, HRT is effective in treating hormone-related hair loss. 
  • Start your HRT treatment by assessing your hair fall, understanding your medical condition, and consulting with your healthcare provider.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, HRT can be used to stop male pattern baldness, as evidenced in various studies. This is because male pattern baldness is caused by DHT (a type of testosterone) which can be effectively controlled by HRT.  

Yes, HRT is effective in reversing hair loss in both men and women. In women, it is issued to control estrogen and progesterone, especially in conditions such as menopause and postpartum. In men, it can be used to control DHT thus improving hair strength and reversing hair loss with time. 

Yes, HRT can stop hair loss by restoring hormonal imbalance which is a source of hair loss in both men and women. In men, HRT adjusts the amount of testosterone in the body which may be damaging the hair follicles and causing hair loss. In women, HRT is used to balance estrogen and progesterone levels to reduce hair thinning and improve hair growth.

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