Update 23/8/22: Oral minoxidil is available on Dame website, on a case-by-case basis. Begin your consult here, or drop us an inquiry via our WhatsApp hotline.

Topical Minoxidil is the only topical treatment option recognized by the FDA for male-pattern and female-pattern hair loss. In Singapore, Topical Minoxidil is available over-the-counter, without a prescription as a lotion with concentrations of 2%, 3% or 5%. The foam formulation at a concentration of 5% is also available in Singapore.

Topical Minoxidil is a therapeutic product, which means that it is regulated by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) in Singapore and governed by the Health Products Act. Basically, HSA regulates Topical Minoxidil to ensure that standards of safety, quality and efficacy are met.

In Singapore, there are 4 companies that are registered with the HSA to supply Topical Minoxidil: ICM Pharma Pte Ltd, Sunward Pharmaceutical Pte Ltd, Johnson & Johnson Pte Ltd and Teva Pharmaceutical Investments Singapore Pte Ltd. Of note, Growell and Regaine are the only two product brands with varying concentrations of Topical Minoxidil.

Retailers and wholesalers that wish to sell any of these products would need to obtain a license from HSA to ensure that the safety, quality and efficacy standards of Topical Minoxidil supplied can be met.

Familiar sources of Topical Minoxidil in Singapore would be the government or private hospitals, your neighbourhood GP clinics and the pharmacies (eg. Watson, Guardian) that are ever-present in almost every shopping mall.

Without the need for a prescription, you can obtain Topical Minoxidil in Singapore over-the-counter without the need for a consultation with a doctor or even a pharmacist. You may be tempted to look for an online source for convenience and privacy. With the increasing number of platforms for buying health products online, it may be hard to differentiate a legit source from a dubious one.

Here are some tips by the HSA on how to stay safe when buying health products online.

How to stay safe when buying Minoxidil online in Singapore

The HSA has some tips on how to stay safe when buying health products online, and we summarized it below.

Consult your doctor

The HSA recommends everyone take steps to understand what their body needs by visiting a doctor who can give you a proper diagnosis and recommendations.

This is especially important if you have a chronic condition.

In addition, a doctor can recommend the correct dosage. We mentioned that you can get Minoxidil at 2%, 3% and 5% concentrations and only a doctor can make an accurate judgement on which suits you best.

Play it safe

The HSA says you shouldn’t buy medicines or supplements from unfamiliar or dubious sources. Luckily with Minoxidil, you can get it from us or in a pharmacy.

If it’s too good to be true… it’s probably not true

The HSA says no medication can produce quick and miraculous results for medical conditions. It’s true. Minoxidil takes 4-8 months to see results, so buying any product promising instant results should not be taken seriously.

Buy from established retailers

Transparency and trust is important when it comes to medication. Dame only sources for our medications from trusted sources.

The good news is HSA has rolled out its regulations for e-pharmacy services since May 2020 and consumers are strongly advised to only purchase therapeutic products from licensed retail pharmacies and their corresponding e-commerce platforms. Not sure if the products you are getting are from a reliable source? Here are a couple of resources from the HSA:

Register of Therapeutic Products 

Companies licensed to import, wholesale or manufacture health products

Pharmacies

Illegal health products found in Singapore

Can I get Oral Minoxidil in Singapore?

Some may find it troublesome to apply Topical Minoxidil and may have wondered about the use of Oral Minoxidil. To date, there is no Oral Minoxidil product registered with the HSA. Doctors have to apply for a special license to bring in Oral Minoxidil in Singapore.

The recommendation by the FDA is still for Topical Minoxidil in the treatment of female-pattern baldness. 

However, there has been some evidence that a low dose of Oral Minoxidil can be safe and effective. Your doctor will be able to advise. If you don’t have one, you can book an appointment with Dame’s doctor here.

Can I get Rogaine Minoxidil in Singapore?

No. Rogaine is the first brand of Topical Minoxidil approved by the FDA for the treatment of male-pattern hair loss in 1988. The patent for the product has run out and generic brands such as Kirkland, Growell and Regro have been available, usually at a lower cost.

The active ingredient Minoxidil is the same across product brands. The main difference is that generic brands would vary in their inactive ingredients.

This can change the consistency and texture of the final product. For example, you may find different brands being of an oilier or drier consistency.

Can I get Regaine Minoxidil in Singapore?

Yes. Rogaine is marketed as the brand Regaine in Singapore. Regaine is the only brand in Singapore that has a foam formulation Topical Minoxidil product.

Unlike the lotion formulation, the foam formulation does not contain propylene glycol, an inactive ingredient that was found to increase scalp irritation amongst its users.

Is there a difference between Regaine and Rogaine?

No. Both Regaine and Rogaine are the brand names by which Topical Minoxidil is sold. Both products are manufactured by Johnson & Johnson. In Singapore and the UK, the product is marketed under the brand Regaine, while in the US; it is marketed by the brand name Rogaine.

Can I get Kirkland Minoxidil in Singapore?

No. Kirkland is a brand offered by Costco, a big supermarket chain in the US. Kirkland Minoxidil is sold as a supermarket house brand – it is popular as it is sold for at least four times cheaper than Rogaine in the US.

There have been reports that you can find Kirkland Minoxidil in Singapore via third-party retailers on Amazon, Lazada and Shopee. Unfortunately, buying Kirkland Minoxidil from anybody but Costco presents a risk itself.

Firstly, the prices won’t be as amazing as what you can get if you bought it directly from Costco. Costco is a wholesaler so their prices are great, but when they arrive in Singapore, they would have incurred shipping costs and a markup from the third-party seller, and this is only if we’re talking about genuine products.

If you see Kirkland Minoxidil going for extremely cheap in Singapore, be doubly suspicious. Lookalike copies of medication have appeared in Singapore with packaging and bottling looking like the original. One such example is San Ti Niu Bian, which was an illegal medication produced in China. The original factory got shut down by the authorities, but years after that, the medication reappeared on the market looking exactly like the original.

If you can get genuine Kirkland Minoxidil, then great. If you’re not sure, then you’d have to weigh whether it’s worth the cost savings and risk to your fragile hair. At some point, there might be an argument to do it legitimately with a real doctor.

Can I get Growell Minoxidil in Singapore?

Yes. Growell Minoxidil is manufactured by ICM Pharma Pte Ltd, one of the largest local pharmaceutical manufacturers in Singapore. It is available as a lotion in concentrations of 2%, 3% and 5%.

Can I get Regro Minoxidil in Singapore?

Yes. Regro Minoxidil is manufactured by Teva Pharmaceuticals, an Israeli multi-national pharmaceutical company. It is only available as a 5% lotion in Singapore. 

Conclusion

Minoxidil comes in many forms in Singapore that it can be quite confusing. Remember, if you are not sure, it’s best to consult a doctor because you are likely handling a fragile situation with your hair. 

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