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If you’re dealing with hair loss, you may be curious about how you can treat this issue at home. While it’s possible to get over-the-counter products like minoxidil (Rogaine) at your local drugstore, there are also online subscription services designed to help you save time and money.
Let’s take a look at one service, Keeps, and explore what they offer and how their treatments compare with competitors.
Keeps is one of several online services that make it possible to get Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved treatments to minimize hair loss, all from the comfort of home.
Daily supplies are shipped to your door every 3 months, at a significant discount over pharmacy pricing. Plus, you’ll have access to a team of physicians and trained care specialists if you have questions or need support.
Keeps is for people managing hair loss and looking for a convenient telehealth solution. The company connects you with a doctor to prescribe the best products for you that are then delivered to your door every 3 months.
The doctor will also check in with you 30 days into using the products. It’s ideal for anyone looking for a more convenient option than in-person doctor visits and pharmacy pickups.
- The subscription model helps some people stay consistent with their treatment, which is key for hair loss.
- Some people find going through Keeps to be more convenient than getting products from local pharmacies.
- You don’t need to go to in-person appointments to get your treatments.
- The initial consultation is free, even if you don’t have insurance.
- In states where telemedicine isn’t available, using Keeps may add steps, as you’ll need a prescription from a separate doctor to get finasteride.
- Some hair loss may be caused by an underlying medical condition, which the Keeps model may not catch or address.
- You don’t get to choose your doctor.
- In-person visits with a doctor aren’t available through Keeps.
- You can’t cancel or return orders once they’ve been processed. If you want to cancel, you need to make sure you do it before your order is processed, or you’ll be charged.
Finasteride from Keeps
Finasteride is a 1-milligram pill that’s taken daily and is only available with a prescription. It’s the generic version of Propecia. It contains the same amount of active ingredient as Propecia and finasteride from Hims, another competitor.
Minoxidil from Keeps
Keeps sells minoxidil as a solution that you apply to your scalp with a dropper or as a foam that you apply with your hands. Both contain 5 percent of the active ingredient, which is the same dosage as competitors like Hims, Rogaine, Target Hair Regrowth Treatment, and Walgreens Hair Regrowth Treatment.
Minoxidil is the generic version of Rogaine. You don’t need a prescription to use it.
The FDA has approved minoxidil for male and female pattern baldness. It works best on the crown of the head.
Ketoconazole from Keeps
Keeps sells shampoo with 2 percent topical ketoconazole, which is a generic version of Nizoral. Ketoconazole is an antifungal medication that can be used off-label for hair loss.
Nizoral shampoo with 1 percent ketoconazole is sold over the counter and can be found at most local pharmacies.
How finasteride works
Finasteride blocks dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone that causes male pattern baldness. Taking finasteride slows down hair loss. In some people, it can even stop hair loss.
It takes up to 3 months of daily use to see effects from finasteride. If you stop taking it daily, the effects can reverse themselves within about 1 year.
How minoxidil works
Minoxidil works directly on your hair follicles to slow down hair loss and help regrow the hair at the crown of your head. Specifically, it has been shown to increase follicle size and the number of follicles. It also increases blood flow to follicles to encourage growth.
It can take 3 to 4 months for the minoxidil solution or foam to start working. If you stop using minoxidil daily, regrown hair usually starts to fall out within 3 months.
How ketoconazole works
You can start with Keeps in two ways:
- If you know what you want, you can choose your plan: finasteride and minoxidil, finasteride only, or minoxidil only. You’ll then take a short online quiz so a doctor can double-check that you’ve selected the right plan.
- If you’re not sure which product you’d like, you can fill out a questionnaire that asks you about your hair loss, lifestyle, and medical history. It will also ask you for photos of your hair loss. A doctor will review your questionnaire and pictures and suggest a treatment plan for you.
For either method, you’ll also need to provide a copy of your driver’s license or other government-issued ID. Because you need a prescription to use Keeps, the ID is necessary so the doctor knows who you are before prescribing.
A doctor will review your information within 24 hours. In some states, you’ll need to have a phone call with a doctor before you get a prescription. But in others, the doctor can prescribe a treatment for you after just reviewing your information.
Keeps is a subscription service, so they’ll automatically send products to you every 3 months unless you cancel.
If you have questions or experience side effects once starting treatment, you can message a doctor through Keeps. You can speak with one of their doctors over the phone if you prefer, but Keeps will need to set up the call.
Your initial consultation with a doctor is free. After that first visit, you can message the doctor for free for 1 year.
Keeps also recommends an annual telehealth consultation, which costs $5.
Keeps is a subscription model, and you pay for 3 months at a time. As of June 2022, your options are:
- Finasteride and minoxidil foam: $78 for the first 3 months, then $120 every 3 months
- Finasteride and minoxidil solution: $68.25 for the first 3 months, then $105 every 3 months
- Finasteride only: $75 every 3 months
- Minoxidil foam only: $45 every 3 months
- Minoxidil solution only: $30 every 3 months
Ketoconazole is sold as an add-on to any treatment plan. It costs $30 for 3 months.
Keeps also offers a thickening shampoo and conditioner to complement their treatment plans.
As of June 2022, Keeps has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, and customer ratings average 2.32 out of 5 stars. On Trustpilot, Keeps has 11 reviews and an overall rating of 3.2 out of 5 stars.
Most negative reviews mention poor customer service and people being charged after they tried to cancel or having other difficulties with canceling. Once an order is processed for a billing cycle, you can’t return or cancel it.
Keeps has responded to all reviews on the Better Business Bureau site. On the Trustpilot site, there was no response from Keeps on positive or negative reviews.
Reviews on other sites state that Keeps has prompt customer service. Reviews of the products themselves are generally positive across sites.
The Keeps website provides options to text, call, chat with, or email their customer service team.
The side effects of each medication are different.
Finasteride side effects
For finasteride, potential side effects include:
- decreased libido
- erectile dysfunction, which may be permanent
- decrease in ejaculate volume
- breast enlargement
- breast tenderness
- testicular pain
Experts point out that finasteride shouldn’t be used by anyone with a family history of prostate cancer.
About post-finasteride syndrome
Post-finasteride syndrome is a term used for a variety of possible serious side effects that researchers and clinicians have observed in people taking oral finasteride.
Symptoms may occur while taking finasteride and last after people stop using it. These include changes to sexual function, such as erectile dysfunction and low libido, as well as symptoms of depression and anxiety, or physical sensations, like dizziness.
More research is needed on post-finasteride syndrome. Current research is focused on topical versions of this drug, which may be equally effective for hair loss treatment with fewer side effects.
Topical minoxidil side effects
Potential side effects of topical minoxidil include:
- unusual growth of facial and body hair
- scalp itching, dryness, or irritation
Some potential side effects are serious.
Check in with a doctor
Contact your doctor if you experience any of the following while using minoxidil:
Topical ketoconazole side effects
Potential side effects of topical ketoconazole include:
- scalp irritation or dryness
- changes in hair texture
- blisters on your scalp
Ketoconazole can also cause serious side effects. Contact your doctor if you have redness, pain, swelling, or tenderness where you applied the medication.
All types of treatment can cause an allergic reaction.
Check in with a doctor
Seek emergency medical attention if you experience any of the following right after using any product:
Although Keeps has doctors who can prescribe medication for you, it may be helpful to talk with an independent doctor who knows your medical history before using a subscription service for hair loss. They can help make sure your hair loss isn’t caused by an underlying issue.
Even if your doctor gives you a prescription, you can get your medication through Keeps, sometimes for less than what it costs at your local pharmacy. Keep in mind that while finasteride requires a prescription, minoxidil and ketoconazole don’t.
Ultimately, it’s important to learn what’s causing your hair loss, since it may or may not respond to the medications offered by Keeps and may need another type of treatment.
Keeps says that their products are only for male pattern baldness. If this description doesn’t fit you, talk with your doctor about the best treatment for you. Rogaine and Hims/Hers both make treatments specifically for women with hair loss.
✓ ketoconazole shampoo
✓ thickening shampoo and conditioner
✓ thickening shampoo
✓ gummies for thicker-looking hair
|Prescription needed?||for finasteride only||for finasteride only||for finasteride only|
|Pricing||starting at $10 per month depending on plan||starting at $15 per month depending on plan||starting at $20 per month depending on plan|
|Doctor consultations||free, then $5 annually||free||free|
|Subscription or one-time purchase?||subscription only||subscription; over-the-counter products can be purchased without a subscription||subscription; over-the-counter products can be purchased without a subscription|
|Subscription frequency||every 3 months||depends on the product||monthly, quarterly, or on-demand|
|Return policy||all sales are final and returns are not accepted||90-day money-back guarantee||all sales are final and returns are not accepted|
|Cancellation policy||plans can be canceled at any time||plans can be canceled, postponed, or snoozed at any time||plans can be canceled or paused at any time|
Is Keeps legit?
Yes. Keeps is a legitimate online service offering health consultations and hair loss treatment plans for male pattern baldness.
Does Keeps really work?
The products Keeps offers have been shown to minimize hair loss. The company offers a subscription model because these products should be used continuously to maintain results.
Does insurance cover Keeps hair loss treatments?
No. Both finasteride and minoxidil are considered cosmetic, which mean they aren’t covered by most insurance plans. Keeps is a self-pay service, and insurance can’t be used for products or medical consultations.
Is Keeps safe?
Yes. Keeps connects you with a qualified healthcare professional who will prescribe FDA-approved hair loss treatment plans. All ingredients are research-backed and are the same ones used in the products your doctor may prescribe after an in-person visit.
Keeps is one of many options for hair loss treatment, with some advantages. Their subscription model helps keep you consistent, while the telehealth they provide can be a good option if you don’t have a primary care physician or another way to access care.
If you’re not sure what’s right for you, talk with your doctor to help you decide.