Peppermint Oil For Hair Loss – 60% MORE Hair Growth Than Minoxidil!

peppermint leaves and oil on a table

As a hair loss treatment that’s 60% more effective than Minoxidil and with no toxic effects, peppermint oil is a necessary addition to your hair care routine if you want to stop any further thinning and receding and even regrow your hair.

In this guide, I’ll discuss the use of peppermint essential oil (PEO) to grow back lost hair. This will include an in-depth look at recent scientific research, as well as ways you can use the ingredient most effectively.

IMPORTANT! Take the quiz at the end of the article to receive your score (out of 100). This score will help you to better understand your hair loss, and what you can do to stop it.

What is Peppermint Oil?

Peppermint is a plant hybrid of spearmint and watermint, and it’s used in a variety of industries.

In addition to its place in the kitchen (where it’s added to tea, gum, ice cream, and more), it’s also been used quite recently for its many healthy benefits.

Peppermint leaves on a wood table

Due to its cooling effect, it’s used commonly in the temporary treatment of muscle and nerve pain, as well as in the relief of itching. In addition, its aroma is frequently used to induce alertness.

As an oil, this amazing herb has a strong concentration of natural pesticides. This means it’s used in gardens and homes to keep pests (such as mice and spiders) at bay.

Can PEO Be Used for To Regrow Hair?

There’s no doubt that PEO is a highly versatile ingredient. But where does it stand when it comes to treating hereditary baldness?

As will be discussed further below, PEO has a variety of properties that make it an excellent addition to anyone’s hair regrowth routine. However, it has been proven to treat alopecia, and it may even be beneficial in the treatment of individuals with Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA) and Alopecia Areata (AA).

In fact, current research claims it to be more effective than Minoxidil!

More Effective Than Minoxidil?: The Scientific Proof

In 2014, Korean researchers studied the effects of PEO on hair growth. Comparing the essential oil to Minoxidil, a popular FDA-approved hair loss treatment, the results were certainly stunning.

Method

In the beginning of the study, 6-week-old male mice were shaved on their dorsal area so as to start telogen phase for all.

The mice were then split into four separate groups, with each group receiving a topical application of either

  1. Saline (SA)
  2. Jojoba oil (JO)
  3. 3% Minoxidil (MXD)
  4. 3% peppermint essential oil (PEO)

The application was done six days per week for a total of four weeks.

Throughout the study, photographs were taken to visually track hair growth. Each photograph was categorized, and the categories were as follows: 0: no hair growth; 1: less than 20% growth; 2: 20% to less than 40% growth; 3: 40% to less than 60% growth; 4: 60% to less than 80% growth; and 5: 80% to 100% growth.

In addition, skin biopsies were taken at conclusion of the study, and a number of RESULTS were tested.

Results

As mentioned, photographs were taken every week throughout the 4-week study. Let’s take a look:

The effects of saline, jojoba oil, minoxidil, and peppermint oil on mice

As clearly depicted, saline and jojoba oil had minimal visible results throughout the course of the study. However, minoxidil and PEO saw positive hair growth from week 2, and this continued through the entire four weeks.

Further, PEO was clearly dominant when compared with minoxidil and growth was still ongoing. This means that both groups of mice were in the anagen phase of hair growth even after four weeks.

The 3 hair growth phases of anagen, catagen and telogen.

The three hair growth phases.

Now, while visual results can be helpful, let’s get a better understanding of the scientific results obtained by biopsies and samples.

First up is a chart that graphs the effectiveness of all four groups over the course of the study. The results were the mean hair growth score of five mice in each group:

A chart depicting the growth of hair in four mice groups, including one group that received topical peppermint oil

While PEO and MXD were close in the first week, PEO quickly took the lead in terms of hair regrowth scores. In fact, the gap between the two treatments only continued to widen as the weeks passed.

Next, let’s look at the biopsy results as obtained by researchers. Here, we see the a vertical histological view depicting the quantity quality of hair follicles.

A vertical view of mice skin biopsy showing hair follicle growth

Only minoxidil and PEO showed clear hair growth, as depicted by the elongated hair follicles and hair shaft.

Last, researchers compared the number of hair follicles in all four groups, as well as the depth of said follicles.

Charts shown the increase in follicles and depth after the use of peppermint oil

At week 2, the number of hair follicles in the PEO group was 473% and 218% greater than the SA and JO groups, respectively. By week 4, the PEO group had 740% and 307% more hair follicles than SA and JO groups, respectively.

In addition to all of the above results, PEO was also shown to increase blood circulation to the scalp. This was determined by monitoring Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) activity.

When ALP activity is increased, the relaxation of vascular smooth muscle occurs. This enables improved blood flow, and enables your hair follicles to receive the nutrients and oxygen it needs to stay healthy.

As concluded by researchers, “PEO effectively stimulated hair growth in an animal model via several mechanisms and thus could be used as a therapeutic or preventive alternative medicine for hair loss in humans.”

Implications for Thin Hair Sufferers

While the above study was performed on mice, the results can have serious implications for the future treatment of hereditary baldness. How so?

As shown, PEO plays a key role in the initiation of anagen phase and hair follicle proliferation. Both of these are necessary for the growth of healthy, strong hair.

In addition, it also markedly increased IGF-1 mRNA expression at week two, where it took minoxidil until week four to do. What does this mean?

The IGF-1 gene is one that promotes cell growth and survival, and also increases the thickness of hair. An increased expression of this gene means directly relates to improved hair growth.

In individuals with Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA) and other such forms of alopecia, this can mean that the use of PEO can “reboot” the hair growth cycle.

Discover The 4 Scalp Secrets You Need To Grow Back Your Hair...

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Additional Benefits of PEO

While the above study does show some promising results, PEO is beneficial to thin and receding hair sufferers in a number of others ways, too.

First and foremost, this nice smelling herb is within the same family as rosemary.

This is another oil that is beneficial in the treatment for regrowing hair, and this connection may indicate more positive benefits for PEO than just what the above study shows.

In addition, PEO has benefits that aren’t just related to scalp health. However, these benefits can still provide your scalp and hair with positive effects.

It Cleanses the Scalp and Follicles

Scalp buildup – including sebum, sweat, dead skin, hair product, and even chemicals such as DHT – can create an unhealthy environment for your hair.

This can lead to irritation and inflammation, and it can also encourage the growth of bacterial and fungal infections.

PEO is an effective antimicrobial, fighting both bacteria and fungi.

Whether you suffer from tinea capitis, dandruff or seborrheic dermatitis, or folliculitis, PEO can cleanse the scalp and treat the issue at its source.

Scalp Folliculitis from Malassezia

Scalp folliculitis is a common fungal infection.

This means you can provide a clean and healthy environment for your hair follicles, and this in itself is a necessary step when looking to regrow your hair.

It Soothes an Irritated Scalp

The conditions mentioned above – such as dandruff and folliculitis – can cause irritation and inflammation. Not only is this uncomfortable, but it can also lead to hair follicle miniaturization and permanent bald spots.

Infected hair follicle

Infection and inflammation of the hair follicle, if left untreated, can lead to hair follicle miniaturisation and death.

This occurs when the hair is unable to grow as nature intended. With an inflamed or infected follicle, the hair growth becomes stunted. Over time, the follicle itself will begin to miniaturize and, eventually, die.

PEO’s main component, menthol, is a known anti-inflammatory. This oil’s anti-inflammatory properties, then, can sooth an irritated scalp and prevent further irritation and inflammation from reoccurring.

How to Use PEO in the Treatment of Thinning Hair

If you’re ready to jump on the PEO bandwagon, I have two great recipes to get you started.

Both of these can be used on a regular basis, and this means you can get the maximum benefits from the use of this beneficial oil.

Make a PEO Shampoo

Ingredients:

  • Apple Cider Vinegar (1 cup)
  • Water (1 cup)
  • Rosemary (1 bunch)
  • Jojoba Oil (1/4 cup)
  • PEO (10 drops)

Directions:

Boil one cup of water, and then add the rosemary bunch and remove from heat. Allow to steep until cool, and then remove and discard the rosemary and pour the water into the bottle of your choice. Add the remaining ingredients, and stir well.

Lather the combination onto wet hair, and massage into your scalp for 1-3 minutes. Allow to sit for an additional 3 minutes so all ingredients can be properly absorbed, and then rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water.

Hair Benefits:

As a gentle cleanser, the apple cider vinegar removes buildup from your scalp and stabalizes the pH, among other things.

(Learn more about the benefits of apple cider vinegar use here.)

Both rosemary and PEO soothe the scalp, while PEO also cleanses it.

Last, jojoba oil acts as a moisturizer, protecting the hair’s necessary oils from being stripped and ensuring that the scalp stays hydrated.

This combination, when used three to four times per week, is an effective way to keep your hair follicles clear from inflammation or obstruction and prevent irritation or infection.

Make a PEO + Magnesium Oil Scalp Spray

While an unlikely pairing, the combination of magnesium oil and PEO to make a scalp spray is one of the easiest ways to incorporate PEO into your daily routine.

Ingredients:

  • Magnesium oil (100 mL)
  • PEO (10 mL)

Directions:

Combine the two ingredients in a spray bottle, and spritz your hair and scalp nightly before bed. You don’t want to soak your hair, but enough to dampen.

Gently massage the mixture in, and leave it on overnight.

Hair Benefits:

Magnesium is an underrated mineral that many adults lack within their bodies. This can lead to an excess of calcium.

Since calcium is an essential mineral, this may not seem so bad. However, excess calcium can lead to calcification, and this can cause hardening of the scalp and irreversible loss of hair.

This combination, then, offers a soothing and healthy solution to a critical problem.

The Dermaroller – A Natural Way to Boost Peppermint Oil’s Effects

The dermaroller is a microneedling tool that inflicts tiny wounds onto the scalp. These wounds are deep enough to stimulate new cell production and boost blood circulation, but cause no pain.

Stimulate new hair growth with a dermaroller.

I’ve used the dermaroller with great success, and I recommend that you combine this technique with a hair growth boosting ingredient, such as PEO. This will improve the absorption of the oil and, therefore, boost the results.

But make sure you leave at least 4 hours between microneedling and applying the oil – otherwise it will sting really badly!

Hair count increases dramatically by using a dermaroller.

Dramatically increased hair count after 12 weeks using the dermaroller compared to minoxidil alone. And when we consider that PEO is more effective than minoxidil, it becomes clear that PEO + dermaroller would be a powerful combination.

You can see a professional to have this treatment done. However, it’s also possible to do it your own.

A few tips for successful use:

  1. Apply the right amount of pressure. You want to apply enough pressure so the needles penetrate the skin to the dermal layer, but you don’t want to cause pain or excess bleeding. Press just until you feel a slight tingling.
  2. Use a multi-directional method. For best results, you want to cover as much of your scalp as possible. This is why it’s recommend to use a multi-directional method, including vertical, horizontal, and diagonal.
  3. Wash and sanitize after each use. Allow the dermaroller to sit in an antibacterial wash for at least one minute after each use. Then, rinse, dry, and put away in a clean container. Doing this each and every time will reduce the chances of an infection and improve the tool’s effectiveness.
Dermaroller directions

How to use the dermaroller on your scalp for best results.

NOTE: The dermaroller should be used prior to application of the oil, but allow the scalp to rest for at least 12 hours before applying the oil. While this may seem like a long time, the effects of microneedling are present even days after the procedure.

A bottle of peppermint oil with a liquid dropper

Costs and Availability

As a common plant, the oil is widely available and very affordable.

This oil can be purchased in grocery stores, health food stores, and even chemists. In addition, you can purchase the oil online from a wide variety of retailers, including Amazon.

Other Oils to Use with PEO + Alternative Uses

To boost the effectiveness of PEO, you can pair it with a few other essential oils. Some common combinations include:

Vials of essential oil surrounded by plants and herbs

To utilize these combinations, here’s a few things you can do:

  1. Add them to your shop-bought shampoo. While I always recommend you make your own shampoo, you can also add the above essential oils to stop-bought shampoos for improved results.
  2. Apply them directly to your scalp (in combination with a carrier oil). Just as with the PEO and magnesium oil combination above, you can combine a number of your favorite oils above and add them to a carrier oil (such as olive, canola, or coconut).
  3. Create a hair mask. If you’re in need of a deeper treatment, I recommend you make your own PEO hair mask. Masks are thicker and meant to be worn longer, so they can deliver potent results in a shorter period of time when compared to shampoo.

Conclusion

If you’re in need of a soothing, cleansing all-natural product, then peppermint oil may be just what you’re looking for.

This is because not only is it effective at treating hairfall caused by AGA, but it can also treat and prevent thin-hair-causing infections and conditions (such as seborrheic dermatitis) and reduce inflammation.

Dr Axe also seems to be a fan of this amazing oil:

Of course, I understand this is a lot of information to absorb. That’s why I recommend, before anything else, you take the six-question hair loss quiz below.

Is Your Hair Loss Reversible?

Question 1 (of 6)

How many years have you had hair loss for?
Select the number of years below.

  • Justen says:

    Great website!!

    I’ve never heard of using Peppermint Oil. Is this something I can put in before bed and wash out in the morning?

    Thank you,

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Justen. Yes probably your best option is to add 15ml of peppermint oil to 200ml of magnesium oil (you can also add rosemary oil if you want) and then massage a small amount into the thinning/receding area of your scalp before going to bed. You’ll then have to rinse it out in the morning otherwise your hair will look greasy but that’s the most simple and effective way to use it.

      • Estelle says:

        Hi Will
        This is the most informative website that I have found too. Just to follow Justen’s comment – how many times a week would you need to apply the above ? I’m a 44 year old female that has recently had an ovary removed and seen an immediate effect on my hair, though it has been thinning for sometime ):

        • Will Hartfield says:

          You can use it every night. If you also use a dermaroller then skip it on the day you use the roller (or it will sting!)

  • yannick says:

    Great information ok so too early to tell i do not have full blown MPB i have thinning and a not so bald spot on the scalp, i used lots of fat burners ephedrine base and stims to lose weight so that is partially due to this. I bough peppermint oil apply twice per day with jojoba oil, also leave in conditioner herb, magnesium oil and i am waiting for melatonin oil. I also take saw palmetto and pumpkin seed oil, i tried dutastiride and minoxidil with terrible side effects, gained lots of weight water etc,,, i also use DIM this time around for estrogen control so far so good no weight gain.

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Yannick, I hope it goes well with your mixture. But remember, any topical treatment will have only a limited effectiveness. To truly reverse MPB over the long term you will need other approaches such as diet and lifestyle changes, otherwise you will continually be fighting a losing battle.
      Regards
      Will

  • Max says:

    I thoroughly enjoy using peppermint oil on my scalp, I do this daily and my hair has grown much thicker and there is more of it. It smells nice and fresh and would recommend it to anyone who’s having hair loss problems.

  • Kos says:

    Hey do you reckon I could mix peppermint oil in with an organic shampoo base and make my own mix – leave it on for about 10 minutes?

    Was also thinking of adding caffiene powder to the shampoo.

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Yes you certainly could. But make sure whatever shampoo base you use, it needs to be very gentle if you plan to leave it on for 10 minutes. The last thing you want to do is strip away too many of the protective oils from the scalp using a harsh cleansing agent. I personally just use apple cider vinegar once per week to wash my hair. I use PEO along with magnesium oil in a scalp spray.

  • Jason CC says:

    Thank you Will, this is a really good article and I like how you’ve used scientific studies to backup your claims. It is quite encouraging that PEO beats minoxidil. And much less side-effects I’m sure.

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Thanks for your comment Jason. Yes I’d much rather use PEO over minoxidil even if they were equally as effective. Given PEO is actually better, now there’s 0 reason to use Rogaine anymore.

  • Izabela says:

    I’m 45 years old and started thinning and balding 3 years ago. My main concern with minoxidil is that after using it the hair can’t grow by itself anymore. Does this solution have the same or similar side effects?
    Thank you for your anwser and the time you put into creating this blog!

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Izabela, yes after using and then discontinuing minoxidil people often experience shedding where hairs that have been saved or regrown due to the minoxidil fall out and you’re back to where you would have been if you’d never used it at all. I am not sure but I would presume something similar would happen with PEO.

      Luckily however, there is something you can do to stop this happening, and that is to change your body internally so that any new hairs grown will stay there. This is why diet is so important. Because if you don’t change your diet you’ll always be fighting a losing battle with any new hairs grown from topical applications like minoxidil or PEO. As a quick example, perhaps you do an allergy test and find out that gluten is causing you problems and causing inflammation which then leads to hair loss. You remove gluten from your diet and get rid of the inflammation. Then new hairs grown with topical applications will be much less likely to fall out after discontinuing the treatment.

      You’re just using the topical treatment to stimulate new growth, but to keep it there you need to change your body chemistry internally.

      Regards

      Will

  • Annie says:

    Is it true that you cannot use any oils on your skin when you are on oxygen. Is that true.

  • James says:

    Hi Will,

    I have made my own mixture that I have started using in my hair after I shower. It isn’t greasy at all and the smell dissipates after it dries. In a small bottle I put half water and the other half ACV then a few drops of peppermint oil and a few drops of Lavender oil as well as one drop of tea oil. Basically the ACV mixture cleans my scalp and the oils increase blood flow to my hair follicles. Simple, cheap, and I believe effective. Love to hear what you think?

  • Eddy says:

    Hi, How long should the needles be of the dermaroller? Does your program equilibrium contains GRO2? Do you have an email?

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Eddy, the dermaroller in the primary study that we quote use 1.5mm needles. However this is on the longer side of our preferences. I now recommend using a 1mm dermastamp. From 0.5mm to 1.5mm will have an effect so it’s basically personal preference between those sizes.

      Hair Equilibrium is a digital product, so nothing is shipped. However it does include recipes for your own hair growth elixirs. I do have an email but I prefer to respond to questions on the blog, since then everyone can benefit from the discussion.

  • Dave says:

    Hi I’m using PEO mixed with Aloe Vera. It definitely feels good in my hair but I am shedding lots. These hairs are thin and dry. I had been on Minoxidil 2 years back which left alot of my hair in the telogen stage, that is dry, thin and different colour. Do you think the PEO is responsible for this shedding? I can easily pull out some now.
    PS i also started Saw Palmetto recently

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Dave, it’s hard to say what has caused the shedding. I would make sure the concentration of PEO isn’t too high. perhaps 5% PEO and the rest could be aloe vera if you choose that. Have you stopped using minoxidil? This could cause the shedding.

  • Adnan says:

    Hi Will,
    I want to make PEO shampoo whose recipe you showed in this post(with ingredients Apple Cider Vineger, Jojoba Oil, Rose mary, water, ). My question is can I add few drops of rosemary oil instead of Rosemary bunch in water as it is difficult to find the Rose mary plant in my area

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Adnan, yes it would be absolutely fine to use rosemary essential oil instead of a bunch of rosemary – and much more convenient.

  • Andy says:

    I’m trying to replicate the study of PEO vs minoxidil. On day two. So, we’ll see how it goes in comparison

  • Jenna says:

    Can I keep the magnesium oil and peppermint mix on my hair for 2-3 days straight in between shampooing? thanls

  • Rem says:

    12h to wait after dermaroller?
    So should we use some kind of oil immediately after dermaroller or just leave it?

    • Will Hartfield says:

      It’s up to you. There are a few good options. But you have to be careful, some lotions will sting a lot if you put them on straight away after using a dermaroller. Emu oil is a good option though.

  • Tadija says:

    Hi Will,
    I got my peppermint and magesium oils a few days ago and put them together but when looking into the bottle it seems as if the two oils dont mix, but stay as two different layers. Should it be like that?
    I shake the bottle before spritzing it on my hair for now.

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Tadija, yes you’re right, the two are immiscible. That’s why you must make sure you shake it thoroughly before spraying. There are ingredients that can be added to make them mix completely and stay mixed, but since we don’t want to be adding additional ingredients that don’t promote hair growth, and could potentially cause harm, we decided to leave them out of our formula. After all, shaking the bottle a few times before spraying is easy enough.

  • John says:

    Hey just wondering if peppermint oil mixed with coconut oil would be fine or if magnesium oil is the best to mix with.

    Also, how long should the mixture stay on your scalp for? Does it have to be overnight?

    Thanks!

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi John, in general the longer the ingredients are in contact with the scalp, the better. Coconut oil can be good, but it’s easy to overuse and then just make the hair oily. It can also have quite a strong smell, if you are planning on using it overnight.

      • Jhon says:

        Thanks for the reply – I’m curious why other than a potential lack of magnesium in diets do you recommend magensium oil as a carrier. Are the listed oils all safe for everyday use? I’m looking for a non greasy oil – Is magnesium a good choice/are all the listed carrier oils as effective?

        Also, the study say PMO 3% – what is the 3% referring to?

        • Will Hartfield says:

          Hi Jhon, magnesium oil works particularly effectively transdermally, and since it is applied to the scalp, right where we want to reduce calcification this does help to reduce calcification more effectively than supplementation alone. Yes they are safe for everyday use. Mag oil is not really greasy at all actually. It only has a slight oily texture, but in reality it’s not really an ‘oil’ at all. There are some other carrier oils that could be reasonable replacements, but we have found mag oil to be the best. The 3% is referring to the concentration by volume of PMO in the solution.

  • Harpreet says:

    i am 18 and i have severe hair loss i think i am in norwood 2 or 3 how can i regrow my hairs can i grow hairs with peppermint oil and magnesium oil without using derma roller

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Harpreet, you don’t have to use a dermaroller, but it does help. Keep in mind though that topical treatments have limited effectiveness. You need to get to the real root cause of your hair loss, most likely your diet and scalp tension.
      Will

  • Brian says:

    Hi Will,
    I have just started to apply a mixture of peppermint , magnesium and rosemary oil. It’s only been 10 days now and feels good.
    I was recommended by one of my friend to use castor oil.
    Can I mix castor oil in my mixture or apply before bath? Or will it be any helpful.
    Thanks in advance.

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hi Brian, you could try mixing in castor oil, but it will get sticky and messy quite easily. I probably wouldn’t, but if you want to try it once or twice and see how it feels then that is probably worthwhile. You can learn more about castor oil here.

  • 23yroldbaldingguy says:

    hi i heard that a lot of these oils that battle hairloss also can have negative side effects like losing you’re libido permanently sometimes . i read that about saw palmetto and . is that the same with peppermint oil? these stories are also the reason i am reluctant to buy you’re product because it has those oils in it. i would love the stop my balding but if the chance of those negative side effects are true then i don’t know if its worth it.

    • Will Hartfield says:

      It depends which oils we are talking about. Often supplements that help with baldness work by blocking DHT, this could also affect your libido. But peppermint doesn’t work this way, it doesn’t block DHT so I doubt this would be one of the side-effects. Basically the only side-effect we hear about with PEO is light itching. Topical treatments are also much less likely to have side effects than ones that are taken internally such as saw palmetto and pumpkin seed oil.

  • JESSE says:

    Hey I been reading alot about onion juice for hair growth or to thicken and strengthen hair due to the high sulphur count. I was wondering what your thoughts are on using onion juice for growth? Or your thoughts on the importance of sulphur for hair loss? …Also would it be good to add rosemary oil, peppermint oil and tea tree oil to it for better results. Especially peppermint oil not only due to its abilities but also to try and mask the smell because alot of people complain about how the smell stays in their hair

  • Saransh says:

    Sir,can i put PEO directly in my scalp

    • Will Hartfield says:

      Hello Saransh, no! You need to dilute it with a carrier oil before applying it. It is too concentrated to be applied directly.

  • Rohan says:

    Is thinning and receding hairline in teenage years common? Can it be helped?

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