Compare Propecia vs. Rogaine

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.


Propecia (finasteride)

Prescription only

Rogaine (minoxidil)

Helps your hair grow back.

Propecia (finasteride) helps men with hair growth, but needs to be used for at least 3 months or more to see full benefits.

Treats hair loss.

Rogaine (minoxidil) can improve hair loss, but may not work for everyone.

  • Significant increases in hair count were seen at 6 and 12 months in men taking Propecia (finasteride). At 12 months there was a 107-hair difference from those men not taking Propecia (finasteride).
  • Available in a generic form.
  • Is useful as a supplemental treatment to hair transplant surgery.
  • Most side effects go away after your body gets used to Propecia (finasteride).
  • Is available over-the-counter and as a less expensive generic product.
  • You only need to apply this twice a day.
  • Only good for the crown of the head. If you have a receding hairline, Propecia (finasteride) may not work.
  • If you stop taking it, you will lose the hair you grew while on it.
  • Can take 3 months or longer to see full benefits.
  • Sexual side effects can continue after you stop taking Propecia (finasteride).
  • You need to have your blood tested regularly for signs of prostate cancer while taking Propecia (finasteride).
  • Should never be used by women or children.
  • Cannot be used for frontal baldness.
  • Is not as effective on hair loss that is old or large in area. You should use Rogaine (minoxidil) at the first sign of hair loss.
  • Does not work on hair loss that is due to medications (such as chemotherapy), nutritional problems, or certain medical conditions.
  • Is not a permanent solution for hair loss. Once you stop using Rogaine (minoxidil), hair loss will occur again within 3 to 6 months.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Solution
  • Foam
Want to save even more money?
Sign up now for a 30-day trial and save up to 95% at CVS, Kroger, Albertsons, and other pharmacies.
Learn more
Not enough review data.Leave a review
Not enough review data.Leave a review
Side effects
1possible side effects
  • Decreased libido
See more detailed side effects
The Rogaine (minoxidil) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Risk during pregnancy
  • Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels
  • Prostate cancer
    • Men aged 55 years or older
    • Taking 5 mg/day
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Heart problems
    • Heart problems
  • Hair color changes
  • Appropriate use
  • Pregnancy or breastfeeding
  • Flammable
See more detailed risks and warnings