If you’re experiencing eyebrow hair loss or you simply have sparse eyebrows, there aren’t a lot of options to help you regrow hair. But one option could come from a prescription-only treatment that many women currently use on their eyelashes: Latisse, or 0.03% bimatoprost ophthalmic solution.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasn’t officially approved Latisse for eyebrows, but there are some studies out there that support its use for this purpose. Keep reading to find out more about this treatment and whether it could help you.
What is Latisse?
Latisse is the first prescription treatment used to help lengthen, thicken and darken eyelashes. Unlike other lash serums, Latisse is the only FDA-approved solution to combat hypotrichosis, the medical term for having an insufficient amount of eyelashes. The active ingredient in Latisse, bimatoprost, mimics the natural chemical within our body that stimulates hair growth for our eyelashes.
Interestingly, it was initially an eye drops medication used to treat glaucoma, a condition that can cause vision loss due to high eye pressures. A known side effect of this medication was that it was making patients eyelashes long and thick, so it was re-marketed as an eyelash treatment.
The Latisse solution is contained in a small bottle that looks like an eye drop container. Rather than dropping the solution into your eyes, you use a special brush to smear the Latisse onto your upper eyelid. You do this on a daily basis and it promotes eyelash growth.
Benefits of Latisse
Latisse is safe, effective, and suitable for use on most people who experience eyelash loss. The main ingredient in Latisse, bimatoprost, encourages eyelashes to grow thicker and longer. The growth cycle of an eyelash is two months, but you can expect to start to see results within a few weeks while using Latisse. The benefits include:
– Increases eyelash thickness
– Encourages eyelash growth
– Can be used with contact lenses
– Safe and effective
So, can you use Latisse to help grow sparse eyebrows?
Yes, Latisse is often prescribed off-label as a treatment for eyebrow growth. While the FDA hasn’t officially approved Latisse for eyebrows, there are successful studies and patient success stories out there that support its use for this purpose.
For example, a 2016 study kept track of 357 men and women with eyebrow hair loss for seven months. During this time some of the participants received a placebo while others received Latisse to use on their eyebrows. Regardless of which they used, participants were asked to apply it one or two times a day. At the end of the study, participants who used Latisse had more significant eyebrow growth than those who used the placebo. The effects became most noticeable after the second month of application.
A separate 2014 study that studied eyebrow growth in participants using Latisse found similar results. However, in this study, the researchers did not use a placebo. Instead, they asked participants to use Latisse daily on one eyebrow for six weeks. The other eyebrow was left untreated. At the end of the study, researchers found that all participants experienced eyebrow hair growth on the Latisse side with no adverse effects.
How to use Latisse
Before you apply Latisse, make sure your face is completely clean. After cleansing, dry your face thoroughly.
Traditionally, when used on eyelashes you simply put a few drops of the Latisse solution onto the thin, eyeliner-like brush and gently brush along the base of your upper lash line. The application process is the same when using for eyebrows. Simply put a few drops of the Latisse solution onto the thin, eyeliner-like brush and gently brush across each eyebrow. After applying the solution, use a tissue to blot away any excess product. To avoid contamination, you should use a new brush for each eye, and dispose of the brush after each use.
Latisse is not one of those “more is more” situations. You should only apply it once a day. Applying more than once a day will not make your lashes grow any faster.
Although Latisse can stimulate eyelash and eyebrow hair growth, results vary. For best results, you need to be diligent about how, and how often, you apply Latisse. You must also keep using it to maintain results.
One round of Latisse usually lasts around 16 weeks. After a few weeks of use, you should start to see a noticeable difference in the length and fullness of your lashes or your eyebrows.
Latisse is not a permanent solution to eyelash or eyebrow loss. It is usually only effective while you’re using the solution—so once you stop using it, you might see a decrease in length and fullness after a few months. If you do, you can see a doctor to discuss continuing treatment. Latisse can be used repeatedly as long as you don’t develop any adverse side effects.
Costs can vary. Latisse is available via prescription only, so you will have to speak to a dermatologist or doctor. There are also numerous websites where you can purchase Latisse with a free online doctor visit.