The Independent Pharmacy

Finasteride Dosage - How To Use It Safely

Scott McDougall
Scott McDougallMPharmDirector & Registered Manager

Reviewed on 4 Jul 2023

These days, there are many options available for men looking to treat hair loss or male pattern baldness (also known as androgenetic alopecia). One of the most popular and effective treatments to use is Finasteride. If you’ve done any research into this hair loss medication, you’ll know that there are different Finasteride dosages available. So which is the right one to use?

In this article, we’ll be looking at the different doses of Finasteride that are available, and how you can establish which is the right dosage for you.

What is the ‘normal’ Finasteride dosage?

The ‘normal’ dosage of Finasteride completely depends on what you’re using it for — Finasteride is used to treat a few conditions, so the correct dosage can depend on which of these conditions you wish to treat.

Finasteride can be used for the below conditions:

  • Male hair loss
  • Male pattern baldness
  • Receding hairline
  • Hair thinning
  • Enlarged prostate

Click through if you are looking for answers to the question - what is Finasteride used for?

In most cases, the Finasteride dosage used is 1mg; this is used to treat hair loss-related conditions. To find out more about the results, you can go to our Finasteride results page.

However, Finasteride is also used to treat the symptoms of an enlarged prostate (also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH). In this case, the dosage of Finasteride is higher: 5mg is prescribed to treat enlarged prostates.

In both cases, Finasteride is used because of its ability to block the production of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in the body: the male hormone that leads to hair loss and can cause an enlarged prostate gland.

Here at The Independent Pharmacy, we are only able to prescribe Finasteride 1mg tablets for treating male hair loss and pattern baldness; we do not offer Finasteride 5mg for treating an enlarged prostate gland - you would need to see your doctor for treatment.

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Do different people take different doses?

Irrespective of height, weight, or age, the dosage of Finasteride used to treat hair loss is the same for everyone: 1mg.

This is because only a dosage of 1mg per day is required for Finasteride to be effective at successfully treating hair loss. It is important to note that taking a higher dose will not make the treatment any more effective for hair loss.

The same goes for Finasteride taken at different dosages for other medical conditions such as an enlarged prostate gland; if in doubt, speak to your doctor.

There are some exceptions: Finasteride is only suitable for men over the age of 18, and cannot be used by children and adolescents.

Women should also not take Finasteride because of the way that it interacts with female hormones and the potential risks during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Women are also advised not to handle Finasteride tablets (especially if they are crushed or broken) to avoid any absorption into the body.

How to use Finasteride properly

Finasteride is very easy to use properly to effectively treat hair loss and pattern baldness; it just needs to be taken once daily. As it is a small tablet, it can be taken orally without any interruption to your day, with or without food.

Ideally, the tablet should be taken at the same time of the day, every day. So if you normally take it in the morning before breakfast, then carry on doing this rather than taking it at different points during the day.

This is because Finasteride only has a half-life of around five to six hours (meaning half of the dose is removed from your body every six hours). Therefore, to ensure that you continually have a steady level of Finasteride in your body, it needs to be taken daily.

What happens if you miss a dose?

Finasteride is an extremely effective hair loss medication; however, it only works while you are taking it.

This means that if you stop using Finasteride, your body will begin to convert testosterone to DHT again, which, in the long run, means that your hair loss will continue. However, this isn’t going to have an effect if you just miss one day of Finasteride, so don’t worry.

If a dosage of Finasteride is missed, then continue taking the medication as normal — at your normal time, and the normal quantity. Do not take an additional tablet to cover the dose that was missed.

Missing just one dose of Finasteride is incredibly unlikely to have any meaningful effect on your hair growth, but it’s important to stick to your regular treatment routine. If you start to miss doses regularly, your hair growth will halt and your hair loss can resume.

What happens if you don’t use the correct dose of Finasteride?

Using the wrong dose of Finasteride for whatever reason is not recommended. It is always best to follow your doctor’s instructions or the directions on the patient leaflet.

If you usually take 1mg of Finasteride for hair loss, and you take a higher dose of Finasteride, you can increase your chances of suffering from adverse effects. A stronger dose will also have absolutely no increased positive effect on your condition. Click through to our Finasteride side effects page for more information.

Similarly, if you are taking 5mg of Finasteride for enlarged prostate, then you should continue to take the same dosage as prescribed by your doctor.


If it is used safely and correctly, Finasteride is an extremely effective medication for treating hair loss, male pattern baldness, and enlarged prostate.

It’s always important to take your medication exactly as your doctor recommends to avoid any side effects and to ensure that you are treating your condition as best as possible.

If you think that Finasteride may be the right treatment for you, you just need to complete a short, free, online consultation before you can buy Finasteride to treat male hair loss.


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