What are the main benefits of biotin for hair growth? First of all, biotin stimulates and nourishes hair follicles and scalp.
It is not uncommon to see biotin as one of the components of hair masks, shampoos and other hair products. The big question is,however, do biotin supplements really benefit the hair and help with hair loss and hair growth?
Biotin which is also known as Vitamin B7 is an important element in the production of certain amino acids and fats. Lack of Biotin can result in dry skin, brittle hair, hair loss, nausea, and even seborrheic dermatitis.
That is why biotin supplements are popular among people with thinning hair and brittle nails. But does it actually help with these problems?
What Does Biotin Actually Do?
Biotin enhances the production of keratin – the natural component of the hair. The keratin molecule penetrates deep into the hair and improves it from the inside. The production of keratin, therefore, boosts the growth of healthy hair follicles, makes the hair stronger and less likely to fall off.
Typically, the amount of biotin one gets from foods like fatty fish, red meat, nuts, eggs, etc., is enough to give a person all the benefits of biotin like the maintenance of full, strong, and glowing hair. This means that people don’t really need biotin supplements if they eat enough food containing biotin.
However, some people may really suffer from biotin deficiency. And, althought these cases are rare, consuming biotin supplements may help to replenish shortage of keratin and other components.
Let’s have a closer look at the list of the most prominent benefits of biotin for hair, skin and nails:
- Biotin is essential for nail health. About 20% of the world’s population are suffering from the problem of brittle nails. Several studies confirmed, that biotin may be beneficial for nail health. Thus, in one study, 8 people with brittle nails received 2.5 mg of biotin per day for 6-15 months. As a result, nail thickness increased by 25% in all 8 participants. The brittleness of the nails has also decreased. In another study 35 people with brittle nails received 2.5 mg of biotin per day for 1.5-7 months, and this has improved nail health in 67% of the participants.
- Hair health. Although biotin is believed to promote hair growth and stop hair loss, there is insufficient evidence to support this theory. However, biotin deficiency is indeed associated with hair loss, so in individuals with biotin deficiency, may benefit from biotin supplements. Whether biotin improves hair growth in healthy people (without the deficiency) is unknown.
- Asides from hair, skin, and nails maintenance, a healthy amount of biotin in the body helps keep blood sugar levels in check and break down micronutrients.
- Biotin is also helping to keep carboxylases (a type of enzyme) active. Carboxylases are important for the metabolic processes of the body system like the production of fatty acids and glucose.
- Some people that have consumed biotin supplementsa also noticed an increase in the volume of eyebrows.
- Those who suffer from eczema may also benefit from biotin supplements. People with biotin deficiency can experience skin problems and suffer from skin rashes. Some studies also indicate that biotin deficiency is associated with the development of seborrheic dermatitis.
Although one of the most commonly known functions of biotin in the body is the production and maintenance of healthy hair and skin, it has other functions like the maintenance of healthy nerves, cells, and digestive tract. Some studies have also shown that biotin can be useful in the treatment of nerve pain, diabetes, and kidney failure.
Do you really need to take biotin supplements?
Many people jump into taking biotin supplements because they think the fact that those who have biotin deficiency have certain symptoms like thinning of the hair, etc. so if they want their hair to add more volume or look better, biotin supplements should be the magic solution. Although people indulge in this, the logic isn’t very grounded as there is an avalanche of reasons behind thinning hair, and in most cases, these reasons have nothing to do with the lack of biotin.
While biotin deficiency may not be very common, there are some groups of people who are prone to it. Lactating mothers, pregnant women, chronic alcoholics, and vegetarians fall under this category. In cases where people find that they lack this vitamin, they run to biotin supplements to remedy their loss of hair or any other symptoms they may be experiencing.
There are anecdotes to support claims that those who do not get enough biotin in their diets, especially those with thinning hair or nails can get it via supplements, but there isn’t any scientific research to back this claim. There is also no blood test to prove biotin deficiency, so one cannot easily tell what the right dosage of biotin supplements should be.
Recommended Dosage of Biotin For Hair Growth
While Mayo Clinic recommends a daily dosage of between 30 to 100 micrograms of biotin supplements for adults, proponents believe that 2000 to 5000 micrograms is the right dosage to make the hair stronger and get the overall desired results.
Note that biotin is a water-soluble vitamin so excess intake of it is usually passed out of the body in feces and urine. Asides from this known fact, one cannot categorically say whether or not is safe to take it regularly as there are no scientific proofs.
When you take biotin supplements, you need to stick to your dosage routine as inconsistencies will cause your results to fluctuate. You have to also understand that just as it is with other supplements, biotin supplements will not make your hair grow overnight. You’ll typically get to notice results after about one month of taking the supplements, but it is also possible for some people to begin to notice differences within two weeks.
If you are taking biotin-rich foods to boost your hair health, you’ll have to take many of them daily to ingest enough biotin into your body. This way, you’ll begin to notice differences after some time.
It is believed that people with alopecia show a positive response when they take the right amount of biotin supplements. It is, however, important to note that those who are treating certain medical conditions need to stop taking biotin supplements as it can interfere with the efficacy of some of your medications.
Best Biotin Supplements for Hair Growth
First, some words of precaution. Unfortunatelly, some producers add biotin to health products that ordinarily have nothing to do with it. This is because they want to add credence to their claims and since many people want to boost their hairs, skin, and nails, they can easily fall for such claims that are still without scientific proofs.
Therefore, try to avoid strange combination of food products and vitamins. For example, yogurt is one of the biotin-rich products, therefore no need to buy yogurt with artificially added biotin. It is very unlikely that it will have any influence on the thickness of your hair.
We selected some biotin supplements that belong to ones of the best on the market in terms of positive consumer reviews.
These biotin and collagen liquid drops from Wellabs have high biotin concentration, but not only this – biotin here is combined with collagen. Collagen is another substance that is often referred to as “the miracle for skin, joints and nails”.
Each drop contains 15000 mcg per serving: 10000 mcg collagen and 5000 mcg biotin. Additionally, it is important to know, that the producer has chosen the liquid form, as liquid form of supplement provides better absorption of active ingredients – up to 98% of working ingredient (while capsules provide only 39% absorbtion).
Wellabs biotin drops can be used as hair growth and skin vitamins, but not only. Liquid biotin helps to support your eyes, liver, and nervous system. Biotin drops are also crucial for pregnant women as this element participates in embryonic growth.
QUALITY: Free of soy, gluten, & GMOs.
CONSUMER REVIEWS: 1) Noticed a significant hair growth within a month. 2) Excessive falling out of hairs stopped. 3) Helped to repait thinning nails. 4) Nice flavor without an aftertaste.
This product contains a high dosage of Biotin (10000 mcg) and it is infused with cold-pressed organic coconut oil for better absorbtion. Coconut oil is one of the few oils that contains both saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. That is why coconut oil not only actively nourishes, but also moisturizes hair and can improve the rate of hair growth both from the inside out and from outside (if it is used ar hair mask). A combination of these two ingrediens is extremely benefitial for hair and nails.
QUALITY: Soy, Gluten & Carrageenan free. Formulated without animal ingredients, fillers, titanium dioxide and artificial colors
CONSUMER REVIEWS: 1) Apart new baby hair, the consumer noticed that her eyebrows and eyelashes have also grown. 2) Hair growing thicker and color enhanced. 3) Hair has become noticeably thicker and fuller at the roots. 4) Do not take if you are prone to acne as it has really high conventration of active ingredients.
What to Consider Before Taking Biotin Supplements
Before you decide to take biotin supplements, you need to consider several important things:
- Are you planning medical examination? If you have an appointment for a blood test, it is advised that you stop taking the supplements three days before you go to the lab. Regardless of the reason for your visit, you should let your doctor know that you are taking the supplements. This is because biotin can interfere with the result of your blood test, and can also mess with your medications.
- Are you afraid, that biotin might cause body hair growth? Since this vitamin is said to boost hair growth, it may also cause the body’s hair to grow, many may think. While this is a very valid concern, it is not the case because unlike the hair on the head, the body’s hair works with a molecular signal. This signal alerts body hair to stop growing when it gets to a particular length. It is thanks to this signal that you don’t have super long hair on your arm or legs. The only part of the body where biotin thickens hair is the head and eyebrow.
- Always consult your medical practitioner. It is generally okay to take biotin supplements, but it is wise to mention it to your doctor before you start taking them, just to be sure that it doesn’t pose any threat to your health. If you have been confirmed to be biotin deficient, your doctor is in the best position to advise you on the right dosage of biotin for you. Your doctor should also let you know the best supplements for your condition.
- Better know the root of your hair loss problem. If your hair seems weak, consult your doctor first to help you decide whether or not biotin supplements are best for you. This is because there is a possibility of some underlying medical conditions that manifest in weak hair. Iron deficiency and deficiency in other vitamins that aid the absorption of iron can also lead to weak hair or nails so biotin supplements may not be what you need.
- Possible side effect of biotin supplements. In rare cases biotin might caus skin rashes, kidney problems, stomach pain, and problems with the release of insulin when one takes too much of it.
Disclaimer: The contents of this website are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice; the content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.