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Hirsutism is the name given to cases of excess facial or body hair in women. It is caused by a hormonal imbalance, and can sometimes cause feelings of distress.

  1. Affects 1-3 women out of every 20 
  2. Can be a source of frustration and difficult to manage 
  3. Excess facial hair easy to treat with Vaniqa

You can buy your repeat hirsutism treatment quickly and simply with our secure online service. Take our questionnaire, and your case will be assessed by a practising doctor.

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0 product result(s) for Hirsutism



  1. Applied to slow growth of facial hair
  2. Noticeable results in weeks
  3. Alternative to hormonal medicine

Hirsutism refers to the excess growth of hair in women. This may be present in a number of places including the upper lip and chin. In other cases it might also be present on the thigh or chest areas. The presence of this hair can lead to feelings of low self-esteem for the person experiencing it. It is, however, a common condition. Up to 3 in 20 women may develop the condition in their adult life.

The main cause of hirsutism is thought to be a hormonal imbalance. It occurs when there is an excess of male hormones, or androgens, in the body. This might be due to a condition called polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which is characterised by the development of small cysts around the ovaries, and can lead to a discordance in hormone levels. The NHS estimates that this is the underlying cause of around 72% of hirsutism cases. Treatment for PCOS may vary depending on the symptoms, but may involve contraceptive pills or other hormonal medicines.

But sometimes, the condition is simply a result of increased sensitivity to male hormones. Even though a woman’s testosterone levels may be normal, their susceptibility to the effects of them may cause the development of symptoms.

Vaniqa is a cream made by Spanish pharmaceutical company Almirall, and is used in the treatment of excess facial hair. Although it does not completely stop the growth of hair in the affected region, it can work to reduce the rate of growth and make excess hair on the face easier to manage.

The functioning constituent in it is eflornithine, and the way this treatment works is to reduce the potency of an enzyme in the body. It is this enzyme, called ornithine decarboxylase, which encourages hair growth. Vaniqa blocks this enzyme from performing its role in the body, and thereby slows down growth and relieves symptoms. This treatment can take up to two months to produce noticeable effects, so other hair removal measures may need to be continued during its use.

Please note that we only offer excess hair treatments on a renewal basis. If you are experiencing this issue for the first time, and are not currently using treatment, you will need to see your GP in person.

Renewing your medication for hirsutism online is simple with our private prescription service. Just take a few minutes to fill in our online questionnaire, and your order will be with you within one working day of approval from our doctor.

Page last reviewed:  26/04/2022
Types of Treatment

Types of Treatment

One of the most popular choices of treatment for excess facial hair growth is a product called Vaniqa, which is made by Almirall, a Spanish-based pharmaceutical company. The medicine is a cream, which is applied directly to the facial area experiencing symptoms.

How do they work?

The active agent in Vaniqa is eflornithine, which works by inhibiting the action of an enzyme. This enzyme, known as ornithine decarboxylase, is responsible for the facilitation of hair growth. In limiting this enzyme’s activity, Vaniqa helps to slow down the rate of growth, thereby reducing symptoms.

What are the side effects?

Not everyone who uses Vaniqa will experience side effects, but those who do might notice mild acne around the site of application, dry skin or a slight burning sensation.

Can I take them with other medications?

This product is not known to affect the action of other medicines. Nevertheless, it is important to let your prescriber know if you are using other treatments during consultation.

Page last reviewed:  26/04/2022
Question and Answers

What’s the difference between the medications?

Other treatments for hirsutism may include combined oral contraceptives, or certain types of hormonal supplement medicines. Vaniqa is different, as it works on the chemical found in hair follicles which drive hair growth.

Should I take Vaniqa?

Whether you can use Vaniqa or not really depends on your overall health. Some people with certain conditions, such as decreased liver or kidney function, may not be able to use it, as it may not be safe for them.

Vaniqa is only to be used on the face.

Are there different side effects?

More common side effects of this treatment include mild acne, burning or irritation around the site of application. You can find out more by consulting the relevant page for this item.

Is it right for me?

Talk to your doctor. They will be able to assist you in selecting a suitable treatment option, and issue a prescription if required.

Buying your regular treatment online is easy. Take our short questionnaire, and a qualified physician will review your answers. If your order is safe for you, an electronic prescription will be generated and sent to our UK pharmacy to be dispensed. Orders are shipped by our courier partners in just one working day.

Page last reviewed:  26/04/2022

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Delivery on all items is included in the price. After your order has been dispatched, you’ll be supplied with a tracking number, allowing you to follow the progress of your items every step of the way. We deliver to anywhere in the UK, so whether you’re in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow or Cardiff, your order will be at your door within just 24 hours of approval from our doctor.

This content was reviewed by a clinician on

26 April 2022
dr daniel

Dr Daniel Atkinson

(GP Clinical Lead - GMC No. 4624794) 26 April 2022
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