What is Nourkrin?
Nourkrin is a natural food supplement which contains a protein of marine extracts, including the cartilage of deep sea fish, along with other minerals and vitamins. The key ingredient is the marine cartilage, which contains glucosamine.
Nourkrin review claims vary, but include the ability to stop excess hair loss, improve the strength of existing hair and help stimulate the re-growth of dormant hair follicles.
How Does it Work?
According to the official website, “The proprietary blend of ingredients in Nourkrin® – with the unique Marilex® – can work in conjunction with your normal Hair Growth Cycle and can help to normalise the overall life and function of the hair follicles, especially if there is an imbalance.”
OK, I thought. Perhaps it would make more sense if I knew what Marilex was. This is what the site had to say: Marilex® is the exclusive, proprietary ingredient in the tablets, and can only be found in the Nourkrin® products from Pharma Medico. Marilex® has been tried and tested all over the globe in connection with its registrations.
Gotcha. Actually, I’m just saying that because I want to appear smart. Perhaps the secret of how it works lies in the other ingredients, I reasoned. This is what the Q&A from the site has to say on the subject: “The other ingredients further influence the Hair Growth Cycle, and Nourkrin® is therefore not just a simple multivitamin, but an effective, scientifically-proven trichological product.” Et voila! No real answers to be found in the official version, then.
So I went looking for a more in depth explanation* – one that might explain why I gave this a try back in late 2005. Apparently there are a number of ingredients included that may contribute to hair growth. For example, Omega 3 fatty acids are said by some to improve scalp circulation, while Fenugreek is said to slow down the transformation of testosterone to DHT, the key factor in male pattern baldness.
However, most sources appear to point to glucosamine as the main active ingredient. Glucosamine is a naturally occurring chemical in the body found in joint fluid and is also often harvested from the shells of shellfish. It’s one of the key building blocks for the body’s connective tissue which includes, cartilage, ligaments, tendons and bone and is necessary for the maintenance and repair of joints and connective tissue. You may already be familiar with its widespread use in tablets and preparations for reducing joint pain and inflammation.
Nourkrin apparently includes glucosamine on the basis that it can rebuild and grow new tissue (not associated with your joints), including dormant hair follicles.
*Whilst I am, perhaps, being slightly unfair here, I do expect more than pure marketing from a manufacturer of hair loss supplements. Most make an effort to explain the mode of action in a more direct and straightforward fashion (whether or not they actually work).
How Effective Is Nourkrin?
Nourkrin’s been around for some twenty odd years. Whilst that doesn’t necessarily mean a great deal when it comes to efficacy in hair loss treatments, it does suggest the question’s worth asking.
Although several clinical studies are referenced in the Nourkrin blog, I could only find one of note published in the Journal of International Medical Research in 2006, funded by the manufacturer.
According to the Natural Pharmacy Magazine “The randomised, double-blind placebo-controlled trial investigated the efficacy and tolerability of Nourkrin® on 55 hair loss subjects over six months and showed results of an increase in hair re-growth of 35.7% for those taking Nourkrin® versus 1.5% of those taking placebo. A further six-month open phase showed continued improvements.
No side effects were reported and the conclusion was that “Nourkrin® may provide an alternative to pharmacotherapy for the treatment of hair loss problems in individuals with androgenetic alopecia.”
Although the trial adheres to good study design principles, there isn’t a lot of detail about the participants other than that they were over 18 years of age and had suffered from some form of hair loss for at least one year prior to the study. I’d be interested to know more about how far advanced hair loss was across the study population, as well as the underlying cause of hair loss in each.
If you got one and a half minutes to spare the video below summarises the manufacturers claims regarding Nourkrin’s approach to treatment of hair loss and effectiveness.
How Long Before I See Results?
The manufacturer recommends that you use Nourkrin for at least 6 months.
The Peak Nutrition website suggests that Nourkrin works in 4 stages, which can take approximately 6 months or so:
- Stage 1: it slows and stops hair loss – month 1-2
- Stage 2: it strengthens and nourishes the existing hair – month 2-3
- Stage 3: it promotes growth of new hair, stimulating dormant hair follicles – month 3-4
- Stage 4: it strengthens the new (wispy/thin) hair – month 5-6.
Best Suited For
Nourkrin is suitable for both men and women and products specifically targeted for both demographics. Those with allergies to fish and shellfish, as Marilex® is a marine-derived extract, should obviously not take it. Pregnant and nursing women should also avoid.
Guidelines for Effective Use
The manufacturer recommends taking two tablets daily. One in the morning and one in the evening, preferably with water (and after food). If you’ve achieved the desired results, you can try reducing to a maintenance dosage of one-a-day.
For those over 176lbs, or who are heavy smokers, a daily dose of three tablets is recommended.
In case you feel the need to up the dosage beyond the above recommendations, even the manufacturer notes that “It has been demonstrated in clinical studies that intake of more than the recommended daily dosage provides absolutely no added benefit.”
The makers of Nourkrin also recommend using the shampoo, conditioner, and scalp lotion daily to achieve optimum results. (If you were to use the scalp lotion apply it in the evening and leave on overnight.)
Cost and Availability
A one month supply (60 tablets) of the Nourkrin Male Hair Preservation Programme will cost you around $50 in the US. As a comparison, Rogaine (minoxidil) is approximately $15 – $20 per month and Propecia (finasteride) about $60 per month.
Nourkrin is a natural supplement. Apart from those groups listed in the ‘avoid category’ above, there are no reported side effects. I certainly didn’t notice any.
- Natural (and safe)
- It can be used in conjunction with other treatments (there are no known instances of interference according to the manufacturer)
- Provided you just take the tablets, it’s easy to administer
- It’s not cheap
- Assuming it works for you, you need to keep taking the product for as long as you wish to control your hair loss
I used Nourkrin according to the instructions for about 4 months in late 2005. I didn’t use any of the additional products (shampoo, conditioner or scalp lotion). There was neither an improvement in hair condition nor reduced hair fall.
At the time I recall feeling that the product was positioned towards women, although the manufacturer was clearly making an attempt to induce the male segment.
The ‘face’ of Nourkrin at the time was Cheryl Baker (of Bucks Fizz fame, winner of the Eurovision Song Contest). Her thinning hair was ostensibly due to a combination of two events: her mother died whilst she was going through the menopause. Both severe stress and menopause are known culprits of (temporary) hair loss.
Which leads me to the other lasting impression of the product. It seemed to be positioned towards hair loss and thinning hair resulting from factors other than genetic hair loss (androgenetic alopecia or pattern baldness).
So, if that was the case, why did I try it? I don’t recall exactly, but suspect it was a combination of a desperate need, the product’s pervasiveness and exceptional marketing, along with numerous testimonials from men and women who said that it had worked for their hair loss (which they had attributed to pattern baldness).
For me, the words and the music don’t quite match with this product. Slick marketing parades as hard science in a way that, with the benefit of hindsight, doesn’t quite add up.
In my view, the most accurate summary of what this product can potentially achieve (if at all) is probably contained in this sentence from the official website: “Regular and proactive use of Nourkrin® MAN from the very first signs of thinning can delay or prevent the onset of hair loss symptoms”.
To see what ultimately worked for me go here.
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