When it comes to a great supplement for the growth of your nails and hair or merely for improving your skin, one substance that you’d hear in the recommendation list is biotin. In recent times biotin has garnered a lot of popularity, however, before you add it to your routine you must be aware of the adverse side effects that are linked to it.

While biotin supplementation is typically safe for people who are deficient in biotin, people who are not, need to be more careful about its dosage. Despite its popularity, the substance requires more research to prove its efficacy when it comes to improving hair and nails.

To inform you beforehand, here are some adverse side effects that have been associated to biotin use:

1 – Cystic Acne

Even a single pimple can give you enough reason to stay at home and hide under the covers somedays so a full face of cystic acne can be labeled as an undeniable self-esteem killer. Unfortunately, taking biotin supplement comes with this risk – it can cause cystic acne on the chin and jawline.

This happens because biotin decreases the absorption of vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid which combats acne. This makes you more prone to developing acne which can be painful to deal with.

2 – Skin Rashes

Some people also struggle with another skin problem on the intake of biotin – they start getting skin rashes which occur due to inflammation in the blood vessels that arises because the immune system consider biotin as a foreign substance. This sometimes happens due to taking larger doses of biotin while other times it’s an allergic reaction that causes skin rashes.

A better idea is to start with smaller doses of the substance and then to ask your doctor to increase dosage gradually so that your body becomes used to of it.

3 – Stomach Discomfort

Another major negative side effect that accompanies biotin use is that of an upset stomach. This includes nausea which can be pretty annoying, cramping that can keep you from being productive, and even diarrhea which can dehydrate you. Though this is a minor concern, it is still best to inform your doctor if you experience these side effects.

Sometimes such adverse side effects are indicators that your body is not reacting well to the substance and requires for you to replace it with some other medication.

4 – High Blood Sugar

The matter is complicated here. Experts say that biotin can reduce blood sugar but for those who are already taking insulin, an addition of biotin to their routine can take blood sugar levels too low. Moreover, biotin can slow down the release of insulin and raise blood sugar as well which is a concern for diabetic patients or those who have hypertension.

This is because slow insulin release can cause clot formation and stroke. In diabetic patients this can lead to ketoacidosis. Hence, such patients are better off avoiding biotin.

5 – Medication Interference

Biotin can interact with certain medications such as those taken by diabetics or those for cholesterol control. It can interact with anticonvulsants as well. Biotin basically lowers the effectiveness of these drugs. This can be dangerous for such patients which is why it is necessary to discuss all details with your doctor beforehand.

Most people pay no attention to discussing what supplements or drugs they are already taking for their health condition which is absolutely wrong.


For most people who consult with their doctors before adding biotin to their day, they can safely take the right dosage of the substance and not experience any negative side effects. In case you do experience any unpleasant side effects, it’s best to get in touch with your doctor and consider alternatives if the situation is serious.