April 27, 2020 3 min read

From the dawn of time mankind we have looked high and low for a solution to hair loss, leading to some bizarre solutions that you should definitely never try! Androgenetic Alopecia (Genetic Hair Loss) has plagued Men and Women for centuries and as science developed over the years, the recommended treatments have been truly wacky and far fetched. Despite this you may be surprised to hear that some people actually still believe that these treatments can work!

Ancient Egyptian Remedies
Ancient Egyptians wrote many medical texts, and one dating back to 1550 B.C. detailed the recommended treatments of the time. One suggestion included a mixture of fats from a hippoptamus, crocodile, tomcat, snake and ibex. Applied directly to the scalp this concoction was believed to somehow combat hair loss. Another potential treatment for hair loss that was used by the Ancient Egyptians was boiled porcupine hair. Once boiled the hair was applied directly onto the scalp for 4 days.

While the Ancient Egyptians had a variety of different potential treatments, the higher class Egyptians were known to wear wigs and even fake beards to keep up appearances.

Hippocrates’ Ancient Greek Treatment
Widely recognised as the father of modern medicine, Hippocrates had his own personal battle with Androgenetic Alopecia. This led him on a journey to find a treatment for himself and those that he was treating. His concoction was no more pleasant than any of the Ancient Egyptians. Hippocrates prescribed a mixture of opium, pigeon droppings, horseradish, beetroot and spices. No evidence in his writings was ever recorded to support his topical treatment. Hippocrates did accurately come to the conclusion that castration was a solution to preventing hair loss. An extreme measure to take to avoid suffering from hair loss!

Cow Urine
Another weird and wonderful treatment that in some regions of the world is actually still being used today. In the Hindu culture, cows play an important role in their religion and are regarded as a sacred animal. They serve a role as a care giver in their culture and have healing abilities. For this reason, beef consumption is amongst the lowest in the world in India.

One of the believed unknown healing powers of the cow is that they are able to treat hair loss. They are able to have this effect when you drink their urine. Yes that's right, you have to drink cow’s urine! There are even conditions to get the best results. The urine should come from a virgin cow and the urine should be collected and drunk before sunrise. Not a treatment we’ll be trying anytime soon!

Snake Oil
The term “Snake oil salesman” is quite widely known as someone selling fraudulent or unproven medical/health products. The term became most popular during the 19th Century in the United States, as salesmen travelled the country selling medical treatments. Included in this were supposed treatments for hair loss. While the ointments they sold may have not have actually contained snake, they commonly contained potentially dangerous ingredients like cocaine and opium.

There are plenty of supposed hair loss therapies on the market today that are still labelled as Snake Oils. When picking your hair loss treatment make sure you pick one with clinical trial results to back up their claims.


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