Contraception and hair loss

Because our hair is hormone-dependent, a contraceptive pill can influence its health, for better or worse.
This concerns scalps which are sensitive to the activity of androgen hormones* and can have a positive or negative effect on hair loss.
We have classified the pills into three categories, according to their positive effect, negative or neutral for hair.

CRITERIA FOR A HAIR-POSITIVE CONTRACEPTIVE

It is the composition of the progestogen that counts, as well as its dosage. Some progestogen molecules have a negative androgenic effect on the scalp, while others do not. But that's not all: the best contraceptive compositions for your hair should also contain an estrogen (at least 0.03 mg/day), to optimise the effect of the progestin.

Based on these precise criteria, the Centre Clauderer has established three categories of hormonal contraceptives, corresponding to 3 different colours:

  • THE POSITIVE (Progestin with anti-androgenic effect and combined with an estrogen (at least 0.03mg)
  • NEUTRALS (Progestin without androgenic effect)
  • THE NEGATIVES (Progestin with a tendency to "androgenise")

Important information!

  • These ratings are based strictly on hair. You should always consult your doctor to find out which contraceptive is best suited to your personal situation.
  • Regardless of your contraceptive, if you are suffering from hair loss/androgenetic alopeciawe strongly advise you to local treatment of your hair's vital functionswith one of Clauderer's serums. Clinical tests conducted by the Besançon Faculty of Medicine have shown that the anti-androgenic effect of these sera (6R or 7R) is far superior to that of Minoxidil.

STOPPING CONTRACEPTION

Interruption of a 'positive' contraceptive sometimes causes widespread hair loss. This is a logical phenomenon: the intake of synthetic oestrogens can stimulate hair vitality and prolong hair cycles for the duration of the contraceptive treatment. Stopping the treatment results in more hair falling out. Normally, hair loss is reversible: after a few weeks, everything should return to normal if the scalp concerned is not particularly sensitive to androgens.

On the other hand, if the pill was 'bad' for the hair, stopping contraception may, some time later, stop hair loss for which the person concerned had no explanation.

LIST OF CONTRACEPTIVES AND QUOTATION

This list includes all the contraceptives available on the French market in 2015. Take a look at it and you'll find out which contraceptive you are currently using, which colour it belongs to and the rating we give it for hair problems.

You will note that Diane 35 and its generics (Evapar, Minerva, Holgyème, Lumalia, etc.) are no longer on our list: since 2014, they can only be prescribed as acne medication. This is a pity because, as an active anti-androgen, their molecule could be effective in combating androgenetic hair loss.

THINGS TO REMEMBER

The rating below is based strictly on hair.
Contraceptives are classified into three categories according to the effect they have on the scalp, vitality or hair loss.
This quotation was created by the Centre Clauderer in collaboration with Dr Caroline Magot. Last update: June 2016.

NAME AND GENERATION CONTRIBUTION PROGESTATIVE ESTROGEN
ADEPAL (2nd generation)NEGATIVE0.1 5-0.2 levonorgestrel0.03-0.04 mg EE*
AMARANCE Gé (2nd)NEGATIVE0.05-0.075-0.125 mg levonor.0.03 - 0.04-0.03 mg EE* (in milligrams)
ANTIGONE (3rd)NEGATIVE0.075 mg desogestrel(estrogen-free)
BELANETTE Gé (4th)NEUTRAL3 mg drospirenone0.02 mg EE*
BELARA (4th)POSITIVE2 mg chlormadinone ace.0.03 mg EE*
CARLIN 20 Gé (3rd)NEUTRAL0.075 mg gestodene0.02 mg EE*
CARLIN 30 Gé (3rd)POSITIVE0.075 mg gestodene0.03 mg EE*
CLAREAL GE (3rd)NEGATIVE0.075 mg desogestrel(estrogen-free)
CÉRAZETTE (3rd)NEGATIVE0.075 mg desogestrel(estrogen-free)
COLPRONENEUTRAL5 mg medrogestone(estrogen-free)
CONVULINE Gé (4th)POSITIVE3 mg drospirenone0.03 mg EE*
CYCLÉANE 20 (3rd)NEUTRAL0.15 mg desogestrel0.02 mg EE*
CYCLÉANE 30 (3rd)POSITIVE0.15 mg desogestrel0.03 mg EE*
DAILY Gé (2nd)NEGATIVE0.05-0.075-0.125 mg levonor.0.03-0.04-0.03 mg EE* (in milligrams)
DEPO-PROV. (1st)NEGATIVE150 mg medroxyprogesterone(estrogen-free)
DESOBEL Gé 20 (3rd)NEUTRAL0.15 mg desogestrel0.02 mg EE*
DESOBEL Gé 30 (3rd)POSITIVE0.15 mg desogestrel0.03 mg EE*
DESOGESTREL 75 (3rd)NEGATIVE0.075 mg desogestrel(estrogen-free)
DESOPOP (3rd)NEGATIVE0.075 mg desogestrel(estrogen-free)
DESORELLE 20 (3rd)NEUTRAL0.15 mg desogestrel0.02 mg EE*
DESORELLE 30 (3rd)POSITIVE0.15 mg desogestrel0.03 mg EE*
DIAMILLA (3rd)NEGATIVE0.075 mg desogestrel(estrogen-free)
DROSPIBEL 20 Gé (4th)NEUTRAL3 mg drospirenone0.02 mg EE*
DROSPIBEL 30 Gé (4th)POSITIVE3 mg drospirenone0.03 mg EE*
EDENELLE (3rd)NEUTRAL0.06 mg gestodene0.015 mg EE*
EFEZIAL20 Gé (3rd)NEUTRAL0.075 mg gestodene0.02 mg EE*
EFEZIAL30 Gé (3rd)POSITIVE0.075 mg gestodene0.03 mg EE*
EFFIPREV (3rd)POSITIVE0.25 mg norgestimate0.035 mg EE*
ELYFEN 20 (2nd)NEGATIVE0.10mg levonorgestrel0.02 mg EE*
ELYFEN 30 (2nd)NEGATIVE0.15 mg levonorgestrel0.03 mg EE*
EVANECIA Gé (2nd)NEGATIVE0.05-0.075-0.125 mg levonor.0.03-0.04-0.03 mg EE* (in milligrams)
EVRA (see note 1) (3rd)POSITIVE150 µ/day norelgestromin20 µ/dayEE*
EXLUTON (2nd)NEGATIVE0.5 mg Lynestrenol(estrogen-free)
FELIXITA20 Gé (3rd)NEUTRAL0.075 mg gestodene0.02 mg EE*
FELIXITA30 Gé (3rd)POSITIVE0.075 mg gestodene0.03 mg EE*
HARMONET (3rd)NEUTRAL0.075 mg gestodene0.02 mg EE*
JASMINE(4th)POSITIVE3 mg drospirenone0.03 mg EE*
JASMINELLE (4th)NEUTRAL3 mg drospirenone0.02 mg EE*
LEELOO (2nd)NEGATIVE0.1 mg levonorgestrel0.02 mg EE*
LÉVONORGESTREL (2nd)NEGATIVE1500 µg levonorgestrel(estrogen-free)
LOVAVULO Gé (2nd)NEGATIVE0.1 mg levonorgestrel0.02 mg EE*
LUDÉAL Gé (2nd)NEGATIVE0.15 mg levonorgestrel0.03 mg EE*
LUTENYLNEGATIVE5 mg nomegestrol acetate(estrogen-free)
LUTERAN 5NEUTRAL5 mg chlormadinone ace.(estrogen-free)
MÉLIANE (3rd)NEUTRAL0,075mg gestodene0.02 mg EE*
MÉLODIA (3rd)NEUTRAL0.06 mg gestodene0.015 mg EE*
MERCILON (3rd)NEUTRAL0.15 mg desogestrel0.02 mg EE*
MICROVAL (2nd)NEGATIVE0.03 mg levonorgestrel(estrogen-free)
MINESSE (3rd)NEUTRAL0.06 mg gestodene0.015 mg EE*
MINIDRIL (2nd)NEGATIVE0.15 mg levonorgestrel0.03 mg EE*
MINULET (3rd)POSITIVE0.075 mg gestodene0.03 mg EE*
MIRENA(2nd)NEGATIVE20µ/day levonorgestrel(estrogen-free)
MONEVA (3rd)POSITIVE0.075 mg gestodene0.03 mg EE*
NEXPLANON (3rd)NEGATIVE60-70 µ/day etonogestrel(estrogen-free)
NORA 30 (2nd)NEGATIVE1500 µg levonorgestrel0.03 mg EE*
NORLEVO (see note 2)NEUTRAL0.15 mg levonorgestrel(estrogen-free)
NUVARING (see note 1)POSITIVE120 µg/day etonogestrel15 µ/day EE*
OPTIMIZETTENEGATIVE0.075 mg desogestrel(estrogen-free)
OPTINESSE Gé 15 (3rd)NEUTRAL0.06 mg gestodene0.015 mg EE*
OPTILOVA 20 (2nd)NEGATIVE1 mg levonorgestrel0.02 mg EE*
ORTHONOVUM (1st)NEGATIVE0.1 mg norethisterone035 mg EE*
ORTHO TRI-CYCLEN (3rd)POSITIVE0.18/0.215/0.25 norgesti.35/35/35 EE*
PACILIA Gé (2nd)NEGATIVE0.1 5-0.2 levonorgestrel0.03-0.04 mg EE*
PERLEANE Gé (3rd)POSITIVE0.1-0.07-0.05 mg gestodene0.03-0.04-0.03 mg EE* (in milligrams)
PHAEVA(3rd)POSITIVE0.05-0.07-0.1 mg gestodene0.03-0.04-0.03 mg EE* (in milligrams)
QLAIRA (4th)POSITIVE0-2-3-0 mg dienogest3-2-2-1 mg estradiol v.
RIMENDIA (4th)NEUTRAL3 mg drospirenone0.02 mg EE*
STÉDIRIL (2nd)NEGATIVE0.5 mg norgestrel0.050 mg EE*
SURGESTONENEGATIVE0.13/0.25/0.5 mg promégest.(estrogen-free)
TRIAFÉMI (3rd)POSITIVE0.18/0.21/0.25 mg norgesti.0.035 mg EE*
TRI-MINULET (3rd)POSITIVE0.05-0.07-0.1 mg gestodene0.03-0.04-0.03 mg EE* (in milligrams)
TRIELLA (1st)NEGATIVE0.5-0.75-1 mg norethisterone0.035-0.035-0.035 mg EE*
TRINORDIOL (2nd)NEGATIVE0.05-0.075-0.125 mg levonor.0.03 - 0.04-0.03 mg EE* (in milligrams)
TRIPHASIL (2nd)NEGATIVE0.05/ 0.075/0.125 levonorg.30/40/30 EE
VARNOLINE (3rd)POSITIVE0.15 mg desogestrel0.03 mg EE*
YAZ (4th)NEUTRAL3.0 mg drospirenone0.02 mg EE*
ZIKIALE Gé (2nd)NEGATIVE0.15 mg levonorgestrel0.03 mg EE*
ZOÉLY (4th)NEGATIVE2.5 mg nomgestrol1.5 mg Estradiol

* EE = ethinylestradiol

  • NOTE N°1 : EVRA and NUVARING are classified as "positive", even if the estrogen dosage is <0.030 mg, as this dosage is probably sufficient, given the more direct mode of transmission than oral.
  • NOTE No. 2: NORVELO is classified as "neutral" because it is a "morning-after pill" and its effect is too temporary to have a negative effect on hair.
  • NOTE No. 3: If your hair is falling out too much while you are taking a "positive" pill, it may not be due to your pill and you should look for the cause elsewhere. in-depth hair diagnosis
  • NOTE No. 4: DIANE 35 and its generics (Evepar, Minerva, Holgyème, Lumalia, etc.) were withdrawn from the market in 2013 because of their adverse effects, then put back on sale in 2014, as an anti-acne medication only. This is why these drugs are no longer on our list of contraceptives.

Jean-François Cabos

Jean-François Cabos is the creator of a unique hair care method based on the research he coordinated, which led to the publication of the book "Cheveux, Racines de Vie" with Hélène Clauderer by Robert Laffont (Collection "Réponses/ Santé").

16 Comments
  • Hello,
    The Slinda pill released in 2019 does not appear in your table. Could you tell me in which category you would classify it (drospirenone alone).

    Thank you in advance,
    VB

  • Hi, I'm taking a pill called slinda. I wanted to know if it's good or bad for my hair, because I have a lot of testosterone and I've been losing my hair for a long time.

  • I live in Canada, so the list of anti-anovulants is not the same as that used in Europe.
    I'd like to know your opinion on "Alysena 21" anovulants, which are not on your list.
    Thank you very much

    • Catherine Reiser says:

      Hello, Madam,
      Thank you for your message: it's true that our list is based on feedback. To help you, you need to know the active ingredient(s) in your contraceptive and compare them with those we have listed. As we point out in our article Hair and Hormonal Contraception: "it's the composition of the progestogen that counts, as well as its dosage. Some progestogen molecules have a negative androgenic effect on the scalp, while others do not. But that's not all: the best contraceptive compositions for your hair should also contain an estrogen (at least 0.03 mg/day), to optimise the effect of the progestin". I hope I've helped you. Yours faithfully The Clauderer Team

  • Hello, I did the test with your centre and I suffer from androgenic alopecia. I'm nearly 40 and my doctor doesn't want to prescribe Bellara because it's dangerous and there's a risk of thrombosis.
    Which pill might be right for me?
    Thank you

    • Catherine Reiser says:

      Thank you for your confidence in our Centre. We cannot take the place of your doctor/gynecologist in advising you on contraception. However, you can submit the indicative list we have drawn up. This list is based both on the analysis of our consultant gynaecologist and on our many years of experience. We will of course be happy to work with you to manage your androgenetic alopecia. The Clauderer team

  • Hello,

    It would be interesting to include the Oedien and Misolfa pills in the list (same progestin as Qlaira). Apparently, they have a positive effect on hair.

    Yours faithfully

  • Hello, I'm on leeloo. I had telogen effluvium due to stress, but I don't think being on this pill helped. Can I expect the hair I lost to grow back when I stop taking this pill if it was the cause? Or is it irreversible?
    Thank you for your help

    • Catherine Reiser says:

      Thank you for your message. In our experience, Leelo can indeed have a negative impact on healthy hair if your scalp is receptive to the negative action of androgens. The right Clauderer treatment can revitalise your hair follicles and help you regain healthy hair. A complete hair diagnosis will enable us to take into account all the factors affecting you so that we can provide you with a precise, personalised response. Don't hesitate to contact us for an appointment on 01 42 61 28 01; a diagnosis by correspondence is also available on our website, under the heading "I want a diagnosis". We hope to see you soon. The Clauderer Team

  • Hello
    I'm suffering from abnormal hair loss and I've been on Optilova for 6 or 7 months, is this related? Should I change to a so-called positive pill with an anti-androgenic effect? Please help me, I'm very stressed about my hair loss and it's bound to get worse.
    Thank you. A. You

    • Catherine Reiser says:

      Hello and thank you for your message. Only your gynaecologist will be able to prescribe the contraception best suited to your case. Hair loss is often multi-factorial and a hair assessment (https://www.centre-clauderer.com/diagnostic/) can help you understand the causes of this hair loss, as stress can indeed be an aggravating factor in the case of androgenetic alopecia. Kind regards. The Clauderer Team

  • Thank you very much for this very useful chart. I wonder if you have a similar table for hormone replacement therapies for the menopause (rather than contraceptive pills) and their effect on hair loss. In particular, how would you classify micronised progesterone: positive, negative or neutral? Is there a particular HRT that has been shown to have the most positive effect on slowing hair loss?
    Thank you in advance.

  • Hi, I've read conflicting information about Zoely and nomegestrol. According to some sources, nomegestrol has no androgenic effect, but you classify it as negative and not neutral. I'd like to understand why. Do Zoely and nomegestrol really have androgenic effects? Thanks in advance.

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