Last updated: 17/10/2022

How we pick our products

12Products analysed

32Hours spent

17Evaluated articles

104User reviews

Vitamin B7, biotin, vitamin H – different names that are actually the same thing and can do the same thing: make hair beautiful, skin clear and nails strong. Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin of the B group that has other benefits for the body besides the cosmetic aspect. Vitamin B7 is contained in many foods in small doses, which means that a biotin deficiency rarely occurs in a normal mixed diet. If you have a proven deficiency, you can supplement your diet with vitamin B7 through various means.

If you want to find out about the properties of vitamin B7 and where you can find natural biotin and food supplements, you have come to the right place. In the vitamin B7 test 2022 we will give you all the information you need to know about biotin. In addition to product recommendations, we will show you what is important when buying and answer the most important questions on the subject.




Summary

  • Vitamin B7 (or biotin or vitamin H) can help you get thicker hair, stronger nails and clearer skin. However, this does not always require immediate supplementation with food supplements, but can also be achieved through a healthy, balanced diet alone.
  • Besides the cosmetic benefits, biotin stimulates the metabolism, helps regulate blood sugar, supports brain function, helps with cardiovascular problems and builds muscles and tissue.
  • You can buy vitamin B7 preparations as tablets, capsules, gummy bears, drops or shampoo. Pay special attention to the concentration of the B vitamin and other ingredients.

The Best Vitamin B7: Our Picks

Buying and evaluation criteria for vitamin B7 supplements

When buying a vitamin B7 supplement, there are some criteria you need to consider. These are as follows:

Find the right product for you that meets your expectations. Always look for good quality and inform yourself about the product so that you only feed your body good things. We also advise you to talk to a specialist before buying a food supplement to find out if you need any supplements at all.

Form of supplement

You can take vitamin B7 or biotin in different forms. Depending on your preference, you can choose between the following types:

  • Capsules
  • Tablets
  • Drops
  • Shampoo
  • Gummy bears

Capsules, tablets and drops are taken orally, just like gummy bears. The concentration is highest in capsules, tablets and drops, and usually a pure biotin preparation is offered. Gummy bears, on the other hand, are more likely to be found as a combination preparation and therefore have a lower biotin quantity. Shampoo is recommended if you want to take biotin because of hair loss or thin hair. Shampoo, like other cosmetic products, is usually less concentrated and the absorption rate is controversial.

Ingredients

The ingredients of your preparation are important. You can buy a preparation with 100 % biotin or combination preparations that contain several vitamins and trace elements.

These vitamin B7 products often contain zinc, selenium, calcium or other vitamin B types.

The combination preparations are mainly used for skin, hair and nails, as they contain the most important ingredients for these. Always make sure that the vitamins that are important for you are included and that you adapt the preparation to your needs.

Dosage

The dosage varies depending on the preparation. Capsules, tablets and gummy bears can be dosed more precisely than shampoo and drops. Always follow the recommended dosage according to the package insert.

If you have a vitamin B7 deficiency, it is advisable to use a medicinal product rather than a food supplement, as medicinal products have higher doses and can therefore correct a deficiency.

If you are taking biotin for hair problems, a lower dose is usually sufficient than if you have additional deficiencies. If you also have brittle nails or poor skin, it’s a good idea to take a higher dose and talk to a specialist.

Package size

Before buying, you should know how often you will take vitamin B7 and in what dosage. Depending on this, you may decide to buy a larger stock pack or a smaller trial pack. We advise you to choose smaller packs with fewer contents, especially for the first use, so that you can try out the vitamin B7 preparation first. If you are sure to take biotin for a longer period of time, it makes sense to buy a large storage pack, as this is usually cheaper.

Also pay attention to the best-before date of your preparation. As vitamin B7 preparations are food supplements and not medicines, they do not have an expiry date, but a best-before date. This means that although the supplement would still be edible in principle after this date, its effectiveness may be limited or cancelled. Note that drops and gummy bears last about one year after opening, whereas capsules and tablets usually last up to two years.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about vitamin B7 answered in detail

For a comprehensive and comprehensible explanation of vitamin B7, we have selected and answered the most important questions on the subject.

What is vitamin B7 / biotin and how does it work?

Vitamin B7 belongs to the group of B vitamins and is often called biotin or vitamin H (because of its effect on hair). Biotin can be taken as a food supplement or used as a cosmetic product. In addition to its known effects on hair, skin and nails, biotin is also said to be responsible for a healthy metabolism, protect brain function, balance blood sugar and promote a healthy cardiovascular system. (1)

Hair / Skin / Nails

Biotin is a miracle cure, especially for hair and nails. Both chronic and acute hair loss can be reduced by taking biotin. This is because the biotin molecule contains sulphur. An important component of hair is a sulphur-based amino acid, which can be delivered to the hair root through biotin. Biotin also supports the production of creatine proteins, which are responsible for hair health, among other things. Besides the higher doses of oral administration of vitamin B7, local administrations through care products are less concentrated. (2, 3)

Vitamin B7-1

Vitamin B7 helps with thin hair and hair loss and can improve hair quality in general.
(Image source: unsplash / Tamara Bellis)

The important protein creatine is also essential for nail production. Therefore, even a small daily dose of vitamin B7 is said to help strengthen brittle nails and improve nail quality. However, the effect is said to start only after six to eight months, as a nail needs this time to renew itself. (4)

Biotin is also important for healthy skin. With the help of biotin, your body is able to promote wound healing and counteract skin diseases. Insufficient biotin intake can lead to skin diseases such as conjunctivitis, eczema or dermatitis. (5, 6) It is recommended to take additional manganese for optimal results, as manganese enhances the formation of enzymes that are necessary for the improvement of the skin. (7)

Metabolism

Vitamin B7 is also important for metabolic processes in the body. For example, with the help of biotin, glucose from carbohydrates and sugar is converted into energy fuel. Fatty acids are activated and amino acids are filtered from proteins and used. (8)

For people at risk of type 2 diabetes, biotin is important because it stimulates metabolism and improves the use of glucose.

With a vitamin B7 deficiency, symptoms of a sluggish metabolism can occur, such as fatigue, weight gain, digestive problems or low energy levels. (1) Vitamin B7 has further positive effects in the following areas:

  • Brain function: As with all B vitamins, brain function is protected and strengthened. Thus, functional limitations can be reduced and the brain can be protected. (9)
  • Blood sugar: Biotin helps to balance blood sugar and thus keep insulin levels down.
  • Cardiovascular system: Heart disease could be prevented with the help of biotin, as cholesterol levels are improved.
  • Tissues and muscles: Vitamin B7 supports the growth and maintenance of body tissues and repairs or builds muscles. B vitamins are also essential for foetal growth, so pregnant women should make sure they get enough B vitamins. (9, 10)

What foods contain vitamin B7?

If you are deficient in biotin or vitamin B7, you can supplement your body with food supplements or medicinal products, but you should make sure that you take vitamin B7 naturally in your diet. Vitamin B7 is found in many foods, but often only in very small amounts. Here is a list of the most important sources of vitamin B7:

Food Vitamin B7 content in µg/100 g (estimate) (11)
Chicken liver 216.0
Yeast 200.0
Dried chanterelle 146.0
Dried porcini mushroom 105.0
Beef liver 103.0
Soy flour 80.0
Peanut butter / nut 67.0
Chicken egg yolk 50.0

In general, you will find the highest biotin content in animal liver and kidney, milk and dairy products, eggs, oatmeal, nuts and yeast. The recommended daily intake for adults is 30 – 60 micrograms, which can usually be halfway covered in a balanced diet. (12)

For whom is B7 supplementation suitable?

Taking biotin or vitamin B7 supplements is suitable for people with suspected or diagnosed biotin deficiency or multiple carboxylase deficiency. However, before starting a supplementation, a discussion with a doctor or nutrition expert should be held in any case, so that the necessary amount of biotin and an actual deficiency can be determined. In general, the body’s need for vitamin B7 can only be estimated, so there are hardly any threshold values for B7 intake. (13)

How does a vitamin B7 deficiency manifest itself?

A vitamin B7 deficiency is rather rare due to nutritional factors. The most likely cause of a dietary biotin deficiency is if you frequently eat raw eggs, are fed artificially (intravenously) or follow a biotin-free diet.

Vitamin B7-2

Biotin is found in many foods. Eggs contain a relatively high amount of B7 in the yolk, but not in the egg white.
(Image source: unsplash / Enrico Mantegazza)

Possible symptoms that appear after months or years are hair loss, skin rashes on the face and head, depression, muscle pain and lethargy. In infants, symptoms appear more quickly and are characterised by seizures, muscle hypotonia or developmental delay. During pregnancy, it can lead to a decrease in the biotin balance, which is why special attention should be paid to symptoms such as hair loss and muscle pain during this time. (12)

What is the recommended daily intake of vitamin B7?

According to the German Nutrition Society (DGE), the reference value for the daily biotin intake of an adult was between 30 and 60 micrograms. (14) In 2020, the recommended estimate was updated to 40 micrograms daily. However, the sufficient dose depends on age, as can be seen in the table below.

Age Biotin (µg/day) (14)
0 to under 4 months 4
4 to under 12 months 6
1 to under 4 years 20
4 to under 10 years 25
10 to under 15 years 35
15 years and older 40
Pregnant women 40
Lactating women 45

A mixed diet usually provides sufficient biotin, so there is no need for food supplements.

Overdose

So far, no negative consequences or side effects of an increased intake of vitamin B7 have been observed. An overdose of vitamin B7 is therefore rather impossible. It should be noted, however, that due to the increased biotin content in the blood, the blood values in test results could be falsified and thus stand in the way of a correct diagnosis. Consequently, wrong or delayed treatments may occur. Before a laboratory test, any biotin intake should be reported. (15)

Side effects

Side effects are rather untypical with vitamin B7 intake, as long as no more than 10 mg is taken daily. Vitamin B7 is a water-soluble vitamin and can therefore be excreted by the kidneys. Therefore, hardly any limit values for vitamin B7 dosage are found. (16)

How much do vitamin B7 supplements cost?

The price difference between different vitamin B7 preparations does not vary much and is mostly due to the brand or the amount of content. Most preparations cost between €5 and €30 and are available in different dosage forms. We most often found preparations in capsule and tablet form, with contents ranging from about 20 pieces to 360 pieces. Very common are dietary supplements specifically aimed at improving skin, hair and nails. These are usually combination preparations with zinc, copper or silica.

What types of vitamin B7 supplements are there?

Biotin or vitamin B7 supplements come in different forms. The most common form of biotin is a capsule or tablet, although the gummy bear form has become increasingly popular in recent years. Shampoo is only needed for external use and is particularly suitable for hair problems.

Type Description
Capsules / Tablet Capsules or tablets are most commonly found. They are relatively small and therefore easy to swallow. Because each capsule or tablet contains exactly the same amount of biotin, you don’t have to worry about the dosage. Capsules or tablets are often combined with other nutrients or available as a pure biotin product.
Gummy bears Biotin gummy bears are a very tasty alternative to capsules or tablets. Most gummy bears have a fruit flavour and are therefore easy to take and not a problem for children. Gummy bears are also available as a combination preparation. To achieve the desired sweetness, sweeteners and flavourings have to be added.
Drops Vitamin B7 drops are less commonly available, but serve the same purpose as other dosage forms. They are taken orally using a pipette and can be taken directly or in combination with food. When taking biotin drops, the dosage can vary and is therefore somewhat more difficult, but drops are usually more productive.
Shampoo Biotin shampoo is used especially for hair loss or thin hair. The ingredients and active substances are supposed to improve the hair problem, but the absorption capacity is controversial. In contrast to the other dosage forms, the shampoo is applied locally and not orally. The amount of biotin in shampoos is relatively small.

We will explain the advantages and disadvantages of the individual types in more detail in the next few paragraphs.

Capsules / tablets

Biotin capsules or tablets are widely available on the market. The clearest advantage of capsules and tablets is the clear dosage. In addition, tablets and capsules are easy to take because of their small size and they are tasteless. Another advantage is that capsules and tablets can be easily transported when you are on the go.

Vitamin B7-3

Vitamin B7 supplements in tablet or capsule form are easy to take and have a pre-set dosage.
(Image source: unsplash / Kayla Maurais)

Vitamin B7 capsule and tablets should be taken together with water. Although it is convenient that the dosage amount is pre-set, it is also a disadvantage because the dose cannot be adjusted to individual needs. The concentration of biotin is very different in capsules and tablets because there are preparations with pure biotin and combination preparations.

Advantages
  • Exact dosage
  • easy to take
  • tasteless
  • easy to transport
  • high availability
  • combination preparations
Disadvantages
  • Ingestion with water
  • no individual adjustment for dosage

Tablets and capsules are therefore the right choice for many people to replenish or maintain their biotin household. Depending on the manufacturer, there are capsules and tablets combined with other vitamins or trace elements that are specifically intended to have a positive effect on skin, nails and hair.

Gummy bears

Biotin gummy bears are a sweeter, tastier alternative to capsules and tablets. They are also to be taken orally, but the intake of liquid is not absolutely necessary. Since gummy bears are supposed to be particularly good for the hair structure, they usually contain other vitamins and nutrients such as zinc and folic acid in addition to biotin. Biotin gummy bears are usually vegetarian, i.e. without gelatine, and are therefore suitable for vegetarians. Some manufacturers also make sure that the gummy bears are lactose-, gluten- and soy-free and are not tested on animals.

Advantages
  • Exact dosage
  • easy to take
  • good taste
  • good alternative to classic
  • food supplements
  • combination preparation
Disadvantages
  • low biotin concentration
  • unwanted ingredients such as sugar and flavours

The disadvantage of vitamin gummy bears is that many additives such as sugar and flavourings are added. This makes them taste so sweet and fruity. In addition, the biotin content is usually not too high. Gummy bears with biotin are especially promoted for their positive effect on the hair. Especially stars like Kylie Jenner or Vanessa Hudgens swear by biotin gummy bears and their positive effect on the hair.

Drops

Vitamin B7 drops are usually available in small glass bottles with a pipette. However, this dosage form is relatively rarely available. The drops are also taken orally and can also be taken at the same time as other foods. The drops are absorbed more quickly by the body than other dosage forms and often come in pure form.

Advantages
  • simultaneous intake with other foods
  • rapid absorption by the body
  • versatile intake option
  • neutral in taste
Disadvantages
  • low availability on the market
  • dosage amount not specified

The drops are relatively tasteless and easy to take. However, it may not be possible to dose the drops exactly.

Shampoo

Biotin or vitamin B7 shampoos are mainly aimed at improving hair quality and are used for hair loss and thin hair structure. Biotin shampoos are offered for different target groups and adapted to them. For example, there are shampoos for older women or men with hair problems, beard shampoos for stronger beard growth, but also shampoos for all age groups and genders that ensure thicker hair.

Advantages
  • easy to use
  • adapted forms depending on the goal
  • ingredients to improve hair structure
Disadvantages
  • controversial effectiveness
  • low amount of biotin

In addition to a relatively small amount of biotin, most shampoos contain ingredients such as quinine, collagen or caffeine, which are supposed to strengthen the hair and improve the hair structure. Biotin shampoo is easy to dose, but it is still controversial whether biotin can be absorbed through shampoo at all and really helps with hair problems. Shampoos may only be applied locally and cannot be taken orally!

What alternatives are there to vitamin B7?

Vitamin B7 should primarily be supplied through the diet. If, after a consultation with a specialist, a biotin deficiency is determined, vitamin preparations can be added. In food, biotin is found in particularly high doses in liver and kidney, but nuts and sunflower seeds are also important sources of biotin. Cooked eggs, especially the yolk, also provide a lot of biotin. However, the egg white alone can cause a biotin deficiency. (17) Another alternative to biotin, which has not yet been scientifically researched, is silicic acid gel. It is said to help especially with hair problems, create more volume and increase hair density.

Image source: Shironosov / 123rf

References (17)

1. Hamid M Said, Biotin: the forgotten vitamin, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 75, Issue 2, February 2002, Pages 179–180, https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/75.2.179
Source

2. Mock, Donald M. Biotin. Modern Nutrition in Health and Disease. 10th. Baltimore; Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2006, 30, pp. 498-506. ISBN: 0-7817-4133-5.
Source

3. Grafe F, Wohlrab W, Neubert RH, Brandsch M. Transport of biotin in human keratinocytes. J Invest Dermatol. 2003 Mar;120(3):428-33. doi: 10.1046/j.1523-1747.2003.12058.x. PMID: 12603856.
Source

4. Fiume MZ; Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel. Final report on the safety assessment of biotin. Int J Toxicol. 2001;20 Suppl 4:1-12. PMID: 11800048.
Source

5. Yang Y, Li C, Qi Z, Xiao J, Zhang Y, Yamaguchi S, Hasegawa Y, Tagami Y, Jiang Y, Xiong H, Zhang Y, Qin J, Wu XR. Spinal cord demyelination associated with biotinidase deficiency in 3 Chinese patients. J Child Neurol. 2007 Feb;22(2):156-60. doi: 10.1177/0883073807300307. PMID: 17621476.
Source

6. Neiva RF, Al-Shammari K, Nociti FH Jr, Soehren S, Wang HL. Effects of vitamin-B complex supplementation on periodontal wound healing. J Periodontol. 2005 Jul;76(7):1084-91. doi: 10.1902/jop.2005.76.7.1084. PMID: 16018750.
Source

7. Paige, D.G., Gennery, A.R. and Cant, A.J. The Neonate. [ed.] Tony Burns, et al. Rook's Textbook of Dermatology. 8. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010, 17, pp. 17.1-17.85. ISBN: 978-1-4051-6169-5.
Source

8. Fernandez-Mejia C. Pharmacological effects of biotin. J Nutr Biochem. 2005 Jul;16(7):424-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2005.03.018. PMID: 15992683.
Source

9. Zempleni J, Wijeratne SS, Hassan YI. Biotin. Biofactors. 2009 Jan-Feb;35(1):36-46. doi: 10.1002/biof.8. PMID: 19319844; PMCID: PMC4757853.
Source

10. Peters RA. THE VITAMIN B COMPLEX. Br Med J. 1936 Nov 7;2(3957):903-5. doi: 10.1136/bmj.2.3957.903. PMID: 20780227; PMCID: PMC2457859.
Source

11. Interaktive Berechnung des Biotin-Anteils in Lebensmitteln
Source

12. Domke,A. / Grossklaus,R. / Niemann,B. / et al: Verwendung von Vitaminen in Lebensmitteln, Toxikologische und ernährungsphysiologische Aspekte, Teil 1. 2004.
Source

13. Website der Deutschen Gesundheit für Ernährung
Source

14. Tabelle der Referenzwerte für die empfohlene Biotin Zufuhr von der deutschen Gesellschaft für Ernährung
Source

15. rb Biotin kann Ergebnisse von Labortests verfälschen. MMW - Fortschritte der Medizin 161, 8 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s15006-019-0591-8
Source

16. Golly, I.C. (2009), Zur Sicherheit von Vitaminen. Nebenwirkungen, Kontraindikationen und Intoxikationen. Pharmazie in unserer Zeit, 38: 154-161. https://doi.org/10.1002/pauz.200800308
Source

17. KAMPHUES, J., KIENZLE, E., SIMON, O., COENEN, M., PALLAUF, J., ZENTEK, J. (2004): Supplemente zu Vorlesungen und Übungen in der Tierernährung. 10. Auflage, M. & H. Schaper, Deutschland, 123, 281
Source

Journal
Hamid M Said, Biotin: the forgotten vitamin, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 75, Issue 2, February 2002, Pages 179–180, https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/75.2.179
Go to source
Buch
Mock, Donald M. Biotin. Modern Nutrition in Health and Disease. 10th. Baltimore; Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2006, 30, pp. 498-506. ISBN: 0-7817-4133-5.
Go to source
Journal
Grafe F, Wohlrab W, Neubert RH, Brandsch M. Transport of biotin in human keratinocytes. J Invest Dermatol. 2003 Mar;120(3):428-33. doi: 10.1046/j.1523-1747.2003.12058.x. PMID: 12603856.
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Bericht
Fiume MZ; Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel. Final report on the safety assessment of biotin. Int J Toxicol. 2001;20 Suppl 4:1-12. PMID: 11800048.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliches Journal
Yang Y, Li C, Qi Z, Xiao J, Zhang Y, Yamaguchi S, Hasegawa Y, Tagami Y, Jiang Y, Xiong H, Zhang Y, Qin J, Wu XR. Spinal cord demyelination associated with biotinidase deficiency in 3 Chinese patients. J Child Neurol. 2007 Feb;22(2):156-60. doi: 10.1177/0883073807300307. PMID: 17621476.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Studie
Neiva RF, Al-Shammari K, Nociti FH Jr, Soehren S, Wang HL. Effects of vitamin-B complex supplementation on periodontal wound healing. J Periodontol. 2005 Jul;76(7):1084-91. doi: 10.1902/jop.2005.76.7.1084. PMID: 16018750.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliches Lexikon
Paige, D.G., Gennery, A.R. and Cant, A.J. The Neonate. [ed.] Tony Burns, et al. Rook's Textbook of Dermatology. 8. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010, 17, pp. 17.1-17.85. ISBN: 978-1-4051-6169-5.
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Journal
Fernandez-Mejia C. Pharmacological effects of biotin. J Nutr Biochem. 2005 Jul;16(7):424-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2005.03.018. PMID: 15992683.
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Journal
Zempleni J, Wijeratne SS, Hassan YI. Biotin. Biofactors. 2009 Jan-Feb;35(1):36-46. doi: 10.1002/biof.8. PMID: 19319844; PMCID: PMC4757853.
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Beitrag
Peters RA. THE VITAMIN B COMPLEX. Br Med J. 1936 Nov 7;2(3957):903-5. doi: 10.1136/bmj.2.3957.903. PMID: 20780227; PMCID: PMC2457859.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Berechnung
Interaktive Berechnung des Biotin-Anteils in Lebensmitteln
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Studien
Domke,A. / Grossklaus,R. / Niemann,B. / et al: Verwendung von Vitaminen in Lebensmitteln, Toxikologische und ernährungsphysiologische Aspekte, Teil 1. 2004.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Information
Website der Deutschen Gesundheit für Ernährung
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Fakten
Tabelle der Referenzwerte für die empfohlene Biotin Zufuhr von der deutschen Gesellschaft für Ernährung
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Bericht
rb Biotin kann Ergebnisse von Labortests verfälschen. MMW - Fortschritte der Medizin 161, 8 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s15006-019-0591-8
Go to source
Wissenschaftliches Buch
Golly, I.C. (2009), Zur Sicherheit von Vitaminen. Nebenwirkungen, Kontraindikationen und Intoxikationen. Pharmazie in unserer Zeit, 38: 154-161. https://doi.org/10.1002/pauz.200800308
Go to source
Wissenschaftliches Buch
KAMPHUES, J., KIENZLE, E., SIMON, O., COENEN, M., PALLAUF, J., ZENTEK, J. (2004): Supplemente zu Vorlesungen und Übungen in der Tierernährung. 10. Auflage, M. & H. Schaper, Deutschland, 123, 281
Go to source
Reviews