How to formulate alcohol and PG free natural "rogaine"

I'm making my own melatonin hair growth treatment similar to Nutra M. What type of solubalizer can I use to make sure the melatonin is effective?


  • GordofGordof Member

    hi Do you mean minoxidil? Melatonin does not have any effect on hair growth as far as knowing (skin Pigment) the only scientifically based raw material I know of is minoxidil?

    if so Solubility of minoxidil is not very good in the water.
    Normally it is solubilized in Alcoholic Formulations to increase Blood flow and to Transport it to the Hair Folic. Doing it without alcohol but with another Pharmacytacaly (if you make that you are in a Drug space so Pharma at least in Europe ) relevant Raw material is difficult. you can Solubilize it in Different oils but it is really bad to treat scalp and hair with that. 

    Sorry, I don't think there is anything already Proofen out there other than alcoholic solutions and in Pharma, you need to Make a study to show that you are at least as good as the current marked Product. 

    It can be a mistake but I would say there is a reason way you only find alcoholic solutions in the market. so far the costs for another delivery system to test and register with authorities will be very high.

    Head of Research and Development 
  • Gordof said:

    hi Do you mean minoxidil? Melatonin does not have any effect on hair growth as far as knowing (skin Pigment) the only scientifically based raw material I know of is minoxidil?

    Unfortunately, he meant what he said.  Here is pretty comical study said formula posted:

    From January to April 2003 a double-blind, placebo-controlled cross-over study was conducted at the Forenap Centre Hospitalier in Rouffach, France on eight healthy women to assess the clinical and biological tolerability of cosmetic melatonin. One group of this study were applied with a 0.0033% cosmetic melatonin solution once daily on their scalp each night before bedtime, while another group were treated with a placebo solution following the same protocol as the other group.

    Within the duration of the study, all the participants were monitored every 14 days for any abnormal increase or decrease in their blood pressure and heart rate as well as any observable increase or decrease in their endogenous melatonin secretions. Based on the results of the electrocardiogram readings collected from all of the participants at the end of this study, showed no significant increase in blood pressure and heart rate for all the participants. But according to clinical laboratory tests for serum melatonin levels done on all participants, it was observed that a gradual increase in blood serum melatonin levels, which was vital for hair growth and restoration, was noted on the participants who were treated with the cosmetic melatonin solution.

    Thus concluding that treatment with topical Melatonin is generally tolerable and hardly show any adverse reaction as compared to that of placebo.

    So...they concluded... melatonin is not super toxic, therefore you can extrapolate that forward, that it will grow hair.  This stuff is just amazing! :) That last sentence I put in just classic scientific evaluation! 

    I think from the marketing, and secondary ingredients...they are working on the concept of DHT blocker, hoping to reduce hair fall.

  • Allegedly, it is extremely difficult to solubolize minoxidil without either in your base, and there is very little evidence online about the subject about which bases will work (other than these two).  My only other suggestion is to use propanediol, but that is very similar to PG -- not sure if you are comfortable using it?   do not know if propanediol with water (no ethanol) will work.  I only know that a mix of propanediol and ethanol as a base does because I had a compound chemist make a preparation for me.

  • SylSyl Member
    Nutra M uses alcohol, you can see the ingredient list in the picture of the back of the label.
  • PhilGeisPhilGeis Member, Professional formulator
    Right Graillotion. 
    Good grief, that report is absurd. "hardly show any adverse reaction" - looking only at electrocardiogram? 
    Here's a relevant publication from  that same French clinical site (best known for sleep research) in a low tier journal.  It's pretty absurd too and shows you can find somebody to publish anything.
    Please recall glycols can induce irritation.   I am familiar with a clinical study of minoxidil in glycol vehicle that provoke very significant irritation.
  • PharmaPharma Member, Pharmacist
    @Gordof Melatonin, not melanin ;) .
    There's some scientific data which implies a possible benefit for hair growth and a very few clinical studies with a hand full of participants to support this claim. Does this sound like natural Rogaine? Only to a fool.
    Anyway, melatonin is poorly soluble in water but acceptably well in diverse polar solvents (given this and its instability in solution, suspensions are commonly used) whilst minoxidil is very poorly soluble in most solvents except for alcohol, alcohol/polyol blends and respective mixtures with a small amount of water. Alternative solvents are usually not acceptable due to irritation, unpleasant feel, poor stability, and other factors.
    One possibility to dissolve both is to use their salt forms... which are fairly unstable in solution, photosensible, and undergo rapid oxidation (discoloration).
    Notably, both ingredients are fully synthetic (melatonin does exist in nature but commercial one is 100% petrochemistry) and not compliant with any 'natural' claim which considers ethanol, isopropanol, or propylene glycols unnatural (they all exist in nature and may even occur at way higher tissue concentrations than melatonin). Sure, propylene glycol isn't frequently found in nature but microbes can synthesise it at larger quantities than one can currently produce 'natural' melatonin for example through fermentation. As mentioned before, propanediol is a suitable alternative solvent but ethanol is still required for good dissolution and water to water the solution down to cosmetical acceptance can and should still be used.
    Using minoxidil suspensions is a wast of $$ (not sure about melatonin). Maybe add Griffonia simplicifolia extract rich in 5-HTP which is a biological precursor of melatonin and use that as a claim ;) .
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