Revitalash is the maker of a successful eyelash growth product that, according to most testaments, seems to give the desired results: longer, thicker and darker assets to bat. I have never used it because it contains a prostaglandin analogue, a glaucoma drug that can have some nasty side effects. So too does the company's new product Hair By Revitalash. But I reasoned that my hairline was far enough away from my eyes to take the risk. Three weeks later I can report that Hair By Revitalash worked for me without any side effects.

Hair By Revitalash is a liquid that becomes a foam that can be rubbed into the scalp. Trading on the success of its eyelash product, Hair claims to have many of the same ingredients and is supposed to result in thicker, fuller hair.

The foaming action is a bit weak, deflating rapidly like a day-old cappuccino. Still, it is easy enough to rub into the scalp and there are no messy drips (having said that, I think it would be hard to control application on eyebrows). I tried it on my slightly thinning widow's peak - left side in a face-off against Folligen. I have been using Folligen, a copper peptide formulation, on and off for about a year and it works perfectly well. After three weeks of testing it against Revitalash, I would say that Revitalash performs slightly better. Both encourage new hair growth, but Revitalash produces strands that are a little longer and thicker.

As well as my anecdotal evidence, there are clinical trials to back me up. The prostaglandin is listed in the ingredients as trifluoromethyl dechloro ethylprostenolamide and although I haven't found tests using that particular variant, there is recent research that holds out much promise for the effect of prostaglandins on hair growth in general. Laboratory experiments with latanoprost (another variant on the glaucoma drug theme and also called xalatan) have demonstrated stimulation of hair growth in mice and on the balding scalp of the stumptailed macaque.

There is an important caveat here. I have a pretty good head of hair, aside from a noticeable thinning at each widow's peak. I have been trying to understand how Revitalash works and research suggests that it prolongs the anagen phase in the hair growth cycle. Furthermore, this study concluded: "Correlation with laboratory studies suggests that initiation and completion of latanoprost hair growth effects occur very early in anagen and the likely target is the dermal papilla."

I interpret this to mean that if you may not see results from Revitalash if you start it later in the anagen phase or in another phase in the hair growth cycle (for more on what this means, read our hair growth 101 post) and you'd have to persevere through the next cycle before passing judgement. My second conclusion would be that that this product is only going to help those with thinning hair, not out and out baldies.

My Revitalash vs Folligen trial should also be judged in the context of price. Hair By Revitalash costs $160 and Folligen is less than $20. Revitalash won the face-off but its performance is not, at least for my money, a whole $100 better.

Ingredients in Hair By Revitalash

Water, Acrylates Copolymer, Ginko Biloba Leaf extract, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Propylene Glycol, Swertia Japonica Extract, Serenoa Serrulata Fruit Extract, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Trifluoromethyl Dechloro Ethylprostenolamide, Glycerin Disodium EDTA, Aminomethyl Propanol, Chlorphenesin, Biotin, Panthenol, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Polysorbate 20, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance