A couple of days ago, I received an email from someone in Australia who had tried Folligen for hair loss and awoke the next day to a raging headache. Other readers have mentioned this, so I felt obliged to take a look at the ingredients in Folligen
. My research suggests that the copper itself - the main active responsible for helping hair regrowth and eyelash growth
- could be the culprit. However, as I dug around further, I found that there is a strong (circumstantial) link to parabens and migraines and many examples of people ditching their paraben-packed eye shadow and becoming headache free.
As for my Aussie correspondent, it is conceivably the copper that is causing the headaches. There are folks who suffer from copper allergies and the symptoms can be severe (although note that this description of copper side effects
is at 100% concentrations). Why do I think it is that rather than the parabens in Folligen (see below for the list of ingredients in Folligen)? Because he is a man. Read on and all will be revealed.
Web sites devoted to migraine cite plenty of anecodatal evidence of links between parabens and headaches. However, I couldn't find any specific studies that showed a positive cause and effect (or otherwise - it doesn't seem to have been researched). But we do know that parabens are xenoestrogens. This means that they mimic the estrogen hormone and it is this that leads some experts to speculate that there is a link between parabens and cancer. Now estrogen is also responsible for the monthly migraine that accompanies my cycle.
So, logically, absorption of xenoestrogens via makeup and skincare products could lead to more frequent hormone-related headaches. If you do an internet search on parabens and headaches, you will find plenty of women saying how they started getting headaches with the use of a product that contains parabens and that symptoms stopped when they eliminated the product from their routine.
Now all of this could be putting two and two together and making seven. However, recent studies
have started to investigate the levels of estrogen in our face creams, suggesting that women are exposing themselves unknowingly on a daily basis.. I will keep researching the subject and post again if I connect anymore dots.
Ingredients in Folligen Cream
Purified water, aloe barbadensis leaf juice (aloe vera) gel, copper peptides (hydrolyzed soy protein and cupric chloride), squalane, glyceryl stearate, PEG-100 stearate, ethylhexyl palmitate, stearic acid, cetyl alcohol, polysorbate 80, cupric chloride, saw palmetto oil, beta-sitosterol, allantoin, propylene glycol, methylparaben, propylparaben, diazolidinyl urea, tocophersolan (Vitamin E), menthol, lavandula augustifolia (lavender) oil, fragrance, mixed (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) tocopherols.