Tamara’s temerity: Hello, Brains. I continue to adore the blog. Now, I humbly come before you again with a beauty query. My question concerns the efficacy of Frederic Fekkai More Nighttime Follicle Boosting Treatment. Freddy claims the following results: “Concentrated, continuous-release dose of niacin; Increases oxygenation of the follicle; Increases energy metabolism for a more vital, fertile scalp.”
Is this all so much hype & silliness, or does this (pricey) product stand half a chance of treating thinning hair?
The Right Brain finds fault with Fekkai:
As we’ve said in previous posts about products that claim to promote hair growth, there are only two products currently proven to work and approved by the FDA. One is Minoxidil and the other is Propecia.
Another bulls#@t product?
We were all set to rip this product to shreds. But our research uncovered one small detail that lends some unexpected plausibility to Fekkai’s claims: this product contains a pair of niacin-derived ingredients, myristyl nicotinate and ethylhexyl nicotinate. It just so happens that these ingredients are very similar to ones evaluated for follicle stimulation by researchers in a 2006 study.
Can Niacin stimulate hair growth?
The study in question was a double blind clinical trial conducted by respected dermatologists. The researchers evaluated the effect of topical application of two niacin derivatives (octyl nicotinate and tetradecyl nicotinate) on 60 female subjects with Ludwig types I-III female pattern hair loss. 40 subjects received the niacin treatment, 20 received a placebo. The researchers measured hair fullness by using 35mm photography. After 6 months the study concluded that the panelists who were treated with niacin showed a statistically significant increase in hair fullness.
Does this mean Fekkai really works?
Not necessarily. While Fekkai does say their Niaplex technology is clinically proven, they don’t present any data (at least none that we could find) showing that they tested their exact formula. We can only speculate how similar their treatment is to the one tested by the dermatologists. There are at least 3 confounding factors at work here. One, Fekkai is not using the same niacin derivatives as used in the study. Two, we don’t know the concentrations of the ingredients. They might just be “angel dusting.” And three, we don’t know if the formula itself, or the mode of application, makes a difference.
The Beauty Brains bottom line
Without compelling data on this specific product, we’re skeptical that Fekkai really stimulates follicles. Still, we have to give credit where credit is due. The Fekkai product apparently uses a technology that at least has a theoretical basis for efficacy. And that’s MUCH more than we can say for most hair loss cures.
If you’re concerned about thinning hair and you’ve got 35 bucks to blow, you can buy the Fekkai treatment here. Let us know how that works out for you! (You could always try Toppik Hair Building Fibers!)