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Finasteride Results: Timeline, Photos, Before & After
Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by
Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)
Updated on December 5, 2023

Finasteride is one of the most commonly prescribed hair loss treatments for men experiencing male pattern baldness (MPB). It stops your body from converting testosterone to DHT, the hormone responsible for androgenetic alopecia (the scientific name for male pattern baldness). However, the drug can have some side effects, so many men want to see what Finasteride results they can expect before they seek out a prescription.

The hair restoration results of Finasteride are extremely promising. One study revealed that Finasteride — also known as Propecia — led to increased hair growth in 99.1% of 532 male pattern baldness patients over the course of 10 years [1]. But do you have to wait this long to see results from this hair loss treatment? Also, what does this translate to in terms of visible healthy hair growth? Here, you’ll discover:

  • What Finasteride results look like 3, 6, 9, and 12 months after starting treatment
  • Research into the effectiveness of Finasteride for hair growth
  • How to maximise your Finasteride results.
Table of Contents

Finasteride results after 3 months

According to the hair growth cycle, it usually takes around 4-6 months for hair to become visibly thicker. So few research studies measure hair growth at just 3 months post-treatment, and not all Finasteride users will see significant hair growth results at this interval.

That said, you should start to see some changes around this time. Anecdotal evidence suggests that hair can start to look a little fuller at the 3-month stage. Federico Rangel began using Finasteride after noticing some hair loss around his temples, and thinning across his crown:

Before Finasteride treatment for hair loss
Before Finasteride treatment

“When I first started, the temples were shedding a little bit. The crown was thinning out a bit more,” he said. After 3 months of Finasteride use, he reported, “From what I can tell, the results are actually pretty good. In fact, I’m thinking about growing out my hair, which I haven’t done in about 2 years. […] This is pretty much a full head of hair. I’m very excited about these results.”

Here are Federico’s Finasteride results after 3 months of use:

Hair growth results from Finasteride to treat male pattern baldness

Improvements are already noticeable, especially across the crown. Finasteride can be a great alternative to a crown hair transplant if it’s used for early-stage hair loss.

Another Finasteride patient reported his results after 3 months of treatment. He was candid about his minimal hair loss before he started taking Finasteride:

“I really didn’t have a super bad head of hair beforehand. I was really only experiencing a receding hairline, and you can see I still have a clear widow’s peak. I didn’t notice any hair loss in the crown region, so it was really just the receding hairline that I was focusing on.”

results from using Finasteride to treat male pattern hair loss after 3 months
Photo after 3 months of Finasteride use

Many Finasteride users will experience shedding a few weeks to months after they start treatment. This is an expected part of the hair regrowth process, so stick with it and eventually, you’ll see substantial results.

A 3-month supply of Finasteride starts at £31.20. Learn more about Finasteride prices.

Many Finasteride users will experience shedding a few weeks to months after they start treatment. This is an expected part of the hair regrowth process, so stick with it and eventually, you’ll see substantial results.

A 3-month supply of Finasteride starts at £31.20. Learn more about Finasteride prices.

Finasteride results after 6 months

After 6 months, expect to see even more improvement. These images show 3 Chinese patients before starting treatment, and 6 months later [2]:
Finasteride results after 6 months of treatment

While the  bald spot on the crown is still visible for each of the patients, there’s clear regrowth around the hairline and temples. This increase in hair density will eventually lead to fuller hair across the scalp.

Before and after results of taking Finasteride for 6 months
Before Finasteride treatment and after 6 months of taking 1mg per day [3]
Results of taking Finasteride for 6 months
Patient before Finasteride treatment and after 6 months of taking 1mg per day [3]
Patient results after taking Finasteride for hair loss
Patient before Finasteride treatment and after 6 months of taking 1mg per day

The results suggest that Finasteride is more likely to be effective within 6 months of treatment if it’s started when you notice early signs of hair loss. Widespread diffuse thinning can take longer to correct. You may also need hair transplant surgery for best results.

Propecia results after 9 months

Anecdotal evidence suggests you’ll see clear results from using Finasteride after around 9 months. While few research studies focus on these milestones, many patients claim to have had serious success around the 9-month mark:
hair results before and after 9 months of using Finasteride to treat hair loss
29-year-old patient before and after 9 months of Finasteride treatment
Finasteride Results: Timeline, Photos, Before & After, Wimpole Clinic
57-year-old patient before and after 9 months of Finasteride treatment

Age is less of a factor than the extent of your hair loss when it comes to choosing the right hair restoration solution. But the sooner you start addressing your hair loss, the more likely you are to see great results without needing  FUE hair restoration or strip surgery.

Finasteride results after 1-year

Most Finasteride users see the greatest results in the first year of treatment [1]. This graph shows Finasteride results over the course of 10 years:

Graph showing the progress of hair growth up to 10 years after Finasteride treatment

MGPA = modified global photographic assessment. N-H = Norwood Scale.

The biggest jump in visible growth happens between 0-1 years of treatment. This is true for patients at every Norwood stage. People at Norwood stage 1 to 3 are more likely to see further improvements over the years. But by the end of year 1, all patients will have some idea of their final results.

See the results of Finasteride users a year after starting treatment below:

Results from using Finasteride at 6 and 12 month intervals
Results of 3 patients at baseline, 6 months, and 12 months after Finasteride treatment [3].
Before and after Propecia results from 1 year of treatment
Before treatment and 1 year after treatment; density has improved across the scalp [1]
Before and after hair growth results from oral Finasteride treatment in female patient

A female patient before and after 1 year of Finasteride use, taking 5mg daily [4]. Finasteride isn’t always suitable for women as it can interfere with birth control medication and pregnancy.

If you’re not happy with your results after a year of Finasteride use, it may be time to consider a hair transplant. This is the only way to permanently restore your hair to its natural fullness.

Propecia results after 2+ years

When you start using Finasteride, you’ll need to continue to use it to maintain your new head of hair. If you stop using it, your body will start to produce higher levels of DHT again, and your hair is likely to start shedding. So many men end up taking Finasteride for several years.

Results can continue to improve after a year, but at a slower rate. Some people hit a plateau, and use Finasteride to maintain their new hair growth instead of improving it further.

This photo series shows one patient after 2-9 years of Finasteride use [1]:

Results of 6 years of Finasteride treatment
Results from 9 years of Finasteride treatment for hair loss

In terms of visual growth, there’s limited improvement after the sixth year, and some of the patient’s scalp is still visible through his hair even after 9 years of use. So it’s important to understand the limits of Finasteride, especially if your hair loss is already extensive when you start to use it.

Topical vs oral Finasteride

Most Finasteride users take Finasteride tablets to stimulate hair growth. Topical Finasteride is also an option, especially for those concerned about Finasteride side effects.

Multiple studies have shown that topical Finasteride can also be effective for hair loss [6-7]. One study reported that “its effect is similar to that of oral finasteride, but with markedly lower systemic exposure and less impact on serum DHT concentrations.”

These before and after topical Finasteride photos show the difference this solution can make:

Hair density at baseline and after 24 weeks of Finasteride treatment
Hair density at baseline and after 24 weeks [6]
Hair density at baseline and after 6 months of Finasteride use
Hair density at baseline and after 6 months [7]

What do the studies show?

Most studies show that Finasteride is a highly effective baldness treatment for men with male pattern baldness [1-2, 5, 8]. In a study of more than 500 Japanese patients, the drug was able to improve and prevent the progression of male pattern baldness in 99.1% of patients [1]. Another study showed the same results in 98.4% of men after 5 years of treatment [5]. This study also states that the degree of improvement was most obvious between 3 and 6 months of treatment.

It can be even more effective if combined with Minoxidil, a topical hair loss solution that is meant to promote hair growth by encouraging more blood flow to the scalp and hair follicles. This popular hair loss treatment can be applied to the scalp twice a day [2].

So if you want to give your hairline a real boost, consider using both Finasteride and Minoxidil at the same time. See our comparison of Finasteride vs Minoxidil to learn more about the effectiveness of these hair loss treatments.

Finasteride is also often recommended alongside hair transplants to prevent further hair loss. This helps create longer-lasting results and reduces the likelihood that you’ll need a second hair transplant.

How can I maximise my Finasteride results?

If you want to get the best Propecia results, here’s what you need to do:

  • Take Finasteride in conjunction with Minoxidil — studies show this is more effective than using one or the other.
  • Take one pill every day — reducing your Finasteride use to 3 times a week will make the drug less effective. Consistent use creates better results.
  • Don’t take extra pills, even if you miss one — it’s not necessary, and may increase your chances of Finasteride side effects like erectile dysfunction.
  • Speak to your doctor if you experience side effects — they can help adjust the dosage or find another effective hair loss solution.

How long does Finasteride take to work?

Finasteride takes a while to work. It relies on adjusting your hormone levels, which doesn’t happen overnight. If you take Propecia once a day, you should start to see results within 3-6 months. Final results can be visible 6-12 months after starting treatment. See our full article about how long it takes for Finasteride to work to learn more.

How long does Finasteride work for?

Finasteride will continue to maintain your hair for as long as you take the medication. It’s safe to take Finasteride for months or even years [9]. If you stop taking it, your hair loss will probably restart. Find out more about if Finasteride works and how to get Finasteride.

Is it too late to use Finasteride?

It’s never too late to try Finasteride as a treatment option to regrow hair. Unfortunately, if you have extensive hair loss, this kind of treatment will only take you so far. To get the results you want, you may need a hair transplant. Hair transplants offer permanent results, and you can expect to see results in a similar amount of time to using Propecia.

A professional trichologist is the best person to help you decide on the right course of treatment for the type and extent of your hair loss. at the Wimpole Clinic and our team will examine your hair loss and help you decide if Finasteride is the right treatment for you.

See our list of clinic locations and check out our gallery to see what hair transplantation can do for you.

Finasteride Results: Timeline, Photos, Before & After, Wimpole Clinic

Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)Updated on December 5, 2023
The Wimpole Clinic offers FUE Hair, Beard & Eyebrow Transplants & Trichology.
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