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How Do I Avoid Side Effects From Minoxidil?

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What can I do to avoid side effects from minoxidil? I plan on taking it once per day as I heard it lasts for 18 hours on your skin. Going to be using Rogaine foam and will apply it on my hairline/temples and crown.

These are the main side effects I'm worried about:

1. Puffy face/water retention and weight gain. Heard a guy added 5 pounds within a week from using it.

I'm skinny fat and have a slightly puffy face so I really dont want to worsen this. Also have gyno.

2. Wrinkles/decreased collagen and dark circles under eyes. Heard a lot of anecdotal evidence in regards to this and have seen actual examples of people who got the dark circles under their eyes.

Would taking collagen/vitamin C supplements and using Retinol help combat this side effect? I also have slightly dark circles on my under eyes anyway so I really don't want to exacerbate it. Also should I avoid putting minoxidil at night since the drug could come into contact with other parts of my face from my pillow. I plan to use the Rogaine foam which I heard dries in 20-30 minutes so would I still need to worry about it rubbing onto my pillow even though its dry?

Also heard Rogaine contains retinol in it so could that help combat this side?

3. More hair growth on other parts of the body.

I'm moderately hairy on my chest and also a little hairy on my back and upper arms. My facial hair is patchy though and my arms and legs are around average. Mainly want to avoid making my upper back more hairy. Also can minoxidil accelerate hair growth in your nose and ears?

Should I also avoid dermarolling since while it does help with regrowth it might also increase sides?

Also do I need to wash my crown every time I want to apply min there? Still have a lot of hair on that area and washing my hair everyday causes it to become very dry and frizzy.

I previously took finasteride but quit due to side effects.

TLDR: how to avoid puffy face/weight gain, bad skin and excess hair?

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-Unless you are putting styling products on your head that may seep/sweat down onto your scalp you don't need to wash your hair before every application. The point here is that styling product residues can build up on the scalp skin surface and make it more difficult for the minoxidil penetrate and get absorbed into the skin. Beyond that find the mildest shampoo that works well enough, use warm not hot water when washing your hair, and use a conditioner after you shampoo to help cut down on the frizzy.

-the others per this mayo clinic link are indications that you are applying too much, which guys are prone to do paranoid they aren't applying enough.




  1. Acne at site of application
  2. burning of scalp
  3. facial hair growth
  4. increased hair loss
  5. inflammation or soreness at root of hair
  6. reddened skin
  7. swelling of face

Signs and symptoms of too much medicine being absorbed into the body—Rare

  1. Blurred vision or other changes in vision
  2. chest pain
  3. dizziness
  4. fainting
  5. fast or irregular heartbeat
  6. flushing
  7. headache
  8. lightheadedness
  9. numbness or tingling of hands, feet, or face
  10. swelling of face, hands, feet, or lower legs
  11. weight gain (rapid)
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