Rosemary oil is one of the most effective essential oils for hair growth. Studies have shown that rosemary oil for hair has promising positive effects for people with male pattern baldness and alopecia areata [1-3].
In one study, 38% of men saw increases in hair growth after using rosemary oil for male pattern baldness after six months, while 100% of people saw decreased hair loss . But does this translate to visible results?
In this article, we’ll look at clinical and self-reported rosemary oil before and after photos for hair loss. You’ll get a better idea of the visible results you can expect when using rosemary oil for hair growth.
Rosemary oil is a natural way to block the production of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) on the scalp. It works in a similar way to topical Finasteride: by inhibiting the activity of an enzyme called 5 alpha-reductase, which converts testosterone to DHT.
DHT is a known factor in the development and progression of male pattern baldness. So blocking DHT production can slow down hair loss and invite regrowth. (This is also why rosemary oil for beard growth doesn’t usually work — you need DHT to promote healthy facial hair growth.)
There’s limited clinical photographic evidence showing the before and after effects of rosemary oil on hair. To date, just one research paper has published visual findings of using rosemary oil for hair growth :
This photo compares a patient’s hair before application of rosemary oil for hair (A) and after six months of applying 1ml of rosemary oil to his hair twice a day (B). The results aren’t particularly dramatic, although there is a slight increase in density across his scalp.
Like topical Finasteride, rosemary oil may work better if you’re in the earlier stages of hair loss. If you apply rosemary oil to your scalp at the first signs of balding or thinning, you’re more likely to maintain your hair.
While clinical photos are limited, some rosemary oil users have documented their own hair regrowth journey after applying rosemary oil. Let’s take a look at some of the self-reported results of using rosemary oil for hair growth.
These results haven’t been achieved under controlled conditions, and some users may receive affiliate payments for promoting certain products, and/or use other treatments to supplement their hair growth. So it’s best to exercise a degree of caution when considering these before and after photos (or any you see on social media platforms).
YouTuber and blogger Nick Shell claims to be “the first non-biased person on the internet to use rosemary oil on [his] hair to see if it has any effect on hair loss.” (According to his video, he’s not selling essential oils or receiving kickbacks for this experiment.) Here are Nick’s results before and after using rosemary oil for six months:
Nick used a homemade solution containing the following ingredients and applied a small (unspecified) amount to his scalp each day for six months:
Ultimately, Nick believes he may have seen some reduction in hair loss, but no dramatic regrowth:
“Is it worth it for you to do what I did? You can try. But I’m not here to tell you that it’s a magical thing, or that it will definitely work.”
Another YouTuber, Kaif, documented his own use of rosemary oil over a six-month period. His before and after photos show more significant regrowth and density across his scalp:
Kaif applied his rosemary oil in a different way. Each time he washed his hair, he added three drops of rosemary oil to his shampoo. He also used rosemary oil as part of a rice water rinse and an apple cider vinegar rinse a few times each month, and added it to any other hair oils he used. Kaif says:
“After using rosemary oil for six months, I can definitely see improvements. As you can see, [my hair loss] was pretty bad. But now it’s not that bad any more.”
The visible before and after results of using rosemary oil for six months are negligible. However some users do see early signs of success, so it may be worth trying this treatment if you’re looking for a natural hair loss remedy.
Many videos promoting rosemary oil for hair growth are directed at women. However, there isn’t yet any clinical evidence to suggest rosemary oil is an effective female hair loss treatment.
@kayli.boyle my hair has honestly felt like it’s growing in thicker #hairtok ♬ son original - ?
my hair has honestly felt like it’s growing in thicker #hairtok
In fact, some studies advise that younger women avoid rosemary oil, as it can cause problems in conception or pregnancy . So be sceptical about claims made (especially in short-form videos, where information is very limited) and make sure you know the risks before using any essential oils for hair growth.
Clinical studies have shown that some people see results from using rosemary oil in just three months . But it’s more likely to take six months or longer. So if you decide to use rosemary oil, you’ll need to be persistent and apply it diligently for at least a few months before you see the first signs of regrowth.
You may see some light hair shedding a few weeks after you start using rosemary oil on your scalp. That’s because rosemary oil can push your hair through the hair growth cycle, leading to more hair falling out at the same time.
This is a normal reaction to many hair loss treatments. It’s also often seen in Minoxidil shedding and Finasteride shedding. After a couple of weeks, hair shedding should stop and new hairs will regrow in their place.
You might have seen lots of people raving about rosemary oil on TikTok and other social media platforms. But like many YouTubers and bloggers, they’re often paid to promote certain products, so you can’t always be sure their claims are true.
That said, there is a growing body of scientific evidence that rosemary oil is beneficial for hair growth. One study found that it’s at least as effective as 2% Minoxidil for treating male pattern baldness, and is less likely to cause scalp irritation . So if you want to try rosemary oil for your hair, take a look at some of the best rosemary oils for hair growth currently available.
The evidence for using rosemary oil is still in its early stages. So if you’re not sold on the idea, there are other proven hair loss treatments you can try:
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