Latisse is a topical solution that will thicken and lengthen the eyelashes. The active ingredient in Latisse is bimatoprost. It is now used for cosmetic purposes, though this was an unintended side effect found during testing that has since proven useful. The medication was originally designed to treat and prevent serious ocular conditions.
As a 2010 study notes, eyelashes are thick, long, fully-matured terminal hairs. Their physical properties, when compared to the average scalp hair, are remarkably similar, except for a few major differences:
Scalp hairs, being structurally similar to eyelashes, are also rejuvenated by the effects of Latisse. A 2013 study classifies Latisse as a “low-risk” method for treating scalp alopecia. As such, Latisse can be prescribed to combat hair loss.
Like minoxidil, the exact working mechanisms are not yet fully understood. However, even though the exact methods are unknown, there is still some theoretical evidence to help researchers better understand. Latisse is a prostaglandin analogue. Prostaglandins are fatty compounds that have many different biological functions throughout the body, including hormone regulation and cell growth. These compounds fit into prostaglandin receptors in order to complete their assigned tasks.
Latisse is a type of synthetic molecule that binds to prostaglandin receptors and mimics their function. It is, in essence, able to control and regulate the same biological tasks as organic prostaglandins. Somehow, this topical solution is able to stimulate the scalp tissue into reconstructing the hair follicle. Further research is needed to determine exactly how.
This medication comes in the form of eye drops that are taken with a special applicator. The user must be careful to blot any excess eye drops off of the skin to prevent unwanted hair growth on the cheeks. Furthermore, the user must not apply the medication to the lower eyelid, only the top. This minimizes the chances of a potential purplish darkening of the eyelid itself.
No, you may not want to take this medication if you have any of the following conditions (be sure to ask your doctor):
Some, but not all, of the potential side effects include: