Topical Finasteride vs Oral tablets : Exploring Hair Loss Treatment Options

Usman Majid

Topical Finasteride vs Oral Tablets:

Hair loss is a common concern for many individuals, and there are various treatment options available to address this issue. Among the popular choices are topical finasteride vs oral finasteride tablets. Both aim to inhibit the enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone linked to hair loss. In this article, we will compare topical finasteride vs oral finasteride tablets, highlighting their differences, effectiveness, and considerations to help you make an informed decision regarding the most suitable hair loss treatment for your needs.

Topical Finasteride:

Topical finasteride is a relatively new formulation that allows the direct application of the medication to the scalp. Unlike finasteride tablets, which are taken orally, topical finasteride is applied locally, targeting the hair follicles directly. This localized application reduces the risk of systemic side effects often associated with oral medications. It is worth noting that topical finasteride may require compounding or prescription, and it is essential to consult with a healthcare professional before using it. Topical Finasteride is an unlicensed formulation more information can be found here.

Finasteride Tablets:

Finasteride tablets have been widely used for the treatment of male pattern hair loss for several years. Taken orally, these tablets work by inhibiting the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase, which converts testosterone into DHT. By reducing DHT levels in the body, finasteride tablets help to slow down hair loss and promote hair regrowth. However, it is crucial to consult a healthcare professional before starting any medication to determine the appropriate dosage and potential side effects.

Effectiveness and Considerations:

Both topical finasteride and finasteride tablets have shown promising results in addressing hair loss. However, it is essential to consider certain factors when choosing between the two options:

  1. Application: Topical finasteride offers localized treatment, making it suitable for individuals who wish to minimize potential systemic side effects. Finasteride tablets, on the other hand, provide convenience through oral administration.
  2. Systemic Effects: Finasteride tablets may carry a slightly higher risk of systemic side effects due to the medication being absorbed throughout the body. Topical finasteride, being applied directly to the scalp, has a lower chance of causing systemic side effects.
  3. Prescription and Availability: Finasteride tablets are typically available through prescription and can be easily obtained from pharmacies. Topical finasteride may require compounding or a prescription from a healthcare professional.
  4. Personal Preference: Choosing the right treatment option ultimately depends on personal preference, comfort level, and desired outcome. Consulting with a healthcare professional can help determine the most suitable option based on individual circumstances.


When considering treatment options for hair loss, comparing topical finasteride and finasteride tablets is crucial. Only Finasteride tablets are licensed in the UK and the Topical Finasteride is an alternative treatment. It is recommended to consult with a healthcare professional specializing in hair loss to discuss the most suitable treatment option based on individual needs and preferences.

Remember, each person’s situation is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. By seeking professional guidance and understanding the differences between topical finasteride and finasteride tablets, you can make an informed decision to address your hair loss concerns effectively.

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This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as a substitute for professional medical advice. Always ask your doctor about the risks and benefits of treatment.