Side profile of bald man

Why Is Baldness More Common In Men Than Women?

March
25
,
2024

Baldness, or alopecia, goes far beyond losing a few hairs over time. In the case of alopecia, your entire hair growth cycle is disrupted, leading to thinner coverage or a complete loss of hair entirely. 

While alopecia affects both men and women, it has a much more notable stronghold on the male population. By the age of 50, about 50% of men experience some degree of hair loss. On the other hand, only about 25% of women experience hair loss at the same age. 

Let’s dig a bit deeper into what male pattern balding looks like, the factors that make men much more naturally prone to hair loss in comparison to women, and measures that can be taken to improve your hair health

What Does Male Pattern Baldness Look Like?

Before we get into why men are more likely to bald in comparison to women, let’s first talk about what male pattern baldness looks like. 

Male pattern baldness develops in different stages. It typically starts with a receding hairline at the temples. As the hairline recedes, it starts resembling an “M” shape. You may notice thinning at the crown, in some cases leading to a bald spot. These two areas of hair loss combined often cause a horseshoe-shaped ring of hair around the sides and back of the head as it progresses. 

For some experiencing male pattern baldness, this process may be slow and gradual, and for others, significant hair loss can occur rapidly within just a few weeks. 

Why Are Men More Likely To Bald Than Women? 

curly haired woman hugging man from behind

The higher prevalence of baldness in men compared to women stems from a few different things: genetics, hormones, and how these factors influence hair growth cycles. Let’s break it down. 

Genetics and Hormonal Influences

Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) plays a key role in male pattern baldness. This hormone, a derivative of testosterone, binds to receptors on hair follicles and triggers a response by the body that leads to the miniaturization of hair follicles. Ultimately, it can shorten the growth phase and eventually cause the hair follicles to stop producing hair altogether. While women do produce some testosterone, men naturally have much higher levels and more substrate available for conversion to DHT. 

Both men and women can inherit genes that make their hair follicles sensitive to DHT. Since men have higher testosterone levels, though, they are more likely to experience that sensitivity. 

Hormonal Differences

Just like how men produce more testosterone than women, women produce more estrogen than men. Estrogen protects hair follicles from the miniaturizing effects of DHT. Not only does it help protect hair, but it is also thought to extend the growth phase of the hair cycle. 

While women can and do experience hair thinning, it happens much more commonly later in life—typically after menopause. As estrogen levels decrease, DHT’s impact on hair follicles in women becomes much more noticeable. Even still, it’s generally less severe compared to the symptoms experienced by men.

How To Address Male Pattern Baldness

man in brown button-up

Treatment options for male pattern baldness vary depending on the stage and severity of the symptoms. Early stages often respond better to treatment, and as it advances, it can be a bit trickier to effectively treat. Let’s take a look at a few treatment options.

Nutritional Supplements

While supplements alone won’t cure pattern baldness or genetic forms of hair loss, giving your body the nutrients it needs ensures hair follicles are well-nourished and are set up for success in producing healthy hair. 

Here are a few nutritional supplements thought to improve hair health and aid in hair regrowth:

  • Biotin - Biotin helps your body produce keratin, the primary protein found in hair. While biotin deficiencies are rare, they can cause hair thinning and loss. 
  • Iron - Iron helps red blood cells carry oxygen to hair follicles, so an iron supplement may help if you are experiencing any deficiency.
  • Zinc - Zinc helps tissue growth and repair while keeping your oil glands around the follicles working properly.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids - Found in fish oil supplements, omega-3 fatty acids are known for their anti-inflammatory properties, which can help open up the hair follicles and promote healthy hair growth. 

 

Before making any changes or starting a new regimen, you should always consult with a healthcare provider to understand any deficiencies and ensure the supplements won’t negatively interfere with any other medications. 

Topical Peptide Treatments

Certain peptides mimic the action of growth factors essential in hair follicle development and growth. Others can strengthen hair follicles and can even reduce scalp inflammation that contributes to hair loss. By applying these peptides topically to the scalp, they can penetrate the skin and reach the hair follicles. 

For the best results, topical peptide treatments usually need to be applied regularly, often daily, as part of a comprehensive hair care routine. 

Scalp Massages

Scalp massages have been touted not only for their relaxation benefits but also as a natural method to potentially combat hair loss. Scalp massages improve blood circulation to the scalp, and enhanced blood flow can bring more nutrients and oxygen to the hair follicles. 

Stress plays a significant role in hair loss. Scalp massages can help lower stress levels. It may not be a perfect solution to manage your stress entirely, but a little bit of relaxation can go a long way. 

Dermarolling

Dermarolling, also known as microneedling, is a technique used to enhance hair regrowth. Using a dermaroller, which is a small roller with tiny needles, this procedure creates micro-injuries on the scalp. When combined with topical treatments, such as Folatin or other hair regrowth products, your scalp can better absorb the ingredients and potentially improve their efficacy. 


Understanding the interplay between our genes and hormones sheds light on why baldness is a more frequent visitor to men. By getting to know the patterns, causes, and progression of baldness, men can navigate their hair loss journey with greater clarity and confidence.

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