Norethindrone acetate, ethinyl estradiol

Loestrin Fe

Loestrin Fe

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Norethindrone acetate, ethinyl estradiol

Loestrin Fe

Loestrin Fe is a combined hormonal birth control pill with an iron supplement in the inactive pills. It comes in multiple strengths.

Subscribe to EveAdam to get Loestrin Fe online, delivered regularly from a US pharmacy.

From only $157.75 per month


Loestrin Fe is a combined birth control pill you take every day to prevent pregnancy. Bonus: it also has an iron supplement in the inactive pills. There are several types of Loestrin Fe available, so you can find a hormone strength that’s right for you. At EveAdam, we offer Loestrin Fe 1/20, Loestrin Fe 1.5/30 and Lo Loestrin Fe.

Take our online consultation and a licensed doctor will review your info and recommend a birth control pill based on your medical history and needs. Once you select the one you want, your prescription is sent to our preferred pharmacy to be filled and shipped to you. Our process is simple, convenient and centered around your health. And refills? They’re part of your EveAdam subscription, so you don’t have to worry about running out.

What is Loestrin Fe?

Loestrin Fe is a combined birth control pill. It’s called that because it contains two hormones, progestin and estrogen. The inactive pills also contain iron, which is where the “Fe” bit comes from. (“Fe” is the symbol for iron in the periodic table — whenever you see it in a birth control name, you’ll know the inactive pills are iron supplements.) The amount of iron isn’t enough to treat an iron deficiency, but having a little extra can be helpful during your period.

How does Loestrin Fe work?

Yes, there are a few.

The hormones in Loestrin Fe keep your body from going forward with its monthly plans. Normally you’d experience ovulation, which is when the ovary releases an egg. Loestrin Fe keeps this from happening — no egg means definitely no fertilized egg means no pregnancy.

Taking Loestrin Fe also changes the mucus in your cervix, making it thicker so that sperm would have a harder time getting through. Your uterine lining plays a part as well. This lining normally builds over the course of the month in anticipation of possible pregnancy (like fluffing up the pillows when you’ve got guests coming) and is dispelled during your period. When you’re taking hormonal birth control, the lining doesn’t build in the same way, so your period will probably be shorter and lighter.

Is Loestrin Fe generic?

No, Loestrin Fe is not a generic birth control. However, there are generic versions of it, which means they have the same active ingredients in the same quantities:

  • Aurovela Fe 1/20, 1.5/30
  • Blisovi Fe 1/20, 1.5/30
  • Gildess Fe 1/20, 1.5/30
  • Hailey Fe 1/20, 1.5/30
  • Junel Fe 1/20, 1.5/30
  • Microgestin Fe 1/20, 1.5/30
  • Larin Fe 1/20, 1.5/30

What are the Loestrin Fe dosages?

There are two types of Loestrin Fe, and the doctor will be able to further explain the differences and give you a tailored recommendation. Here are the basics, though.

Loestrin Fe 1/20 is a combined pill with a low estrogen content. It has 21 active tablets, which contain hormones, and 7 inactive ones, which contain iron. The active pills each have 1mg norethindrone acetate (a progestin) and 20mcg ethinyl estradiol (an estrogen). An mcg is a microgram, or 1/1000th of a milligram. It’s a really, really small amount.

Loestrin Fe 1.5/30 is the same thing but with slightly more of each active ingredient: 1.5mg of norethindrone acetate and 30mcg of ethinyl estradiol. You’ll take 21 pills with hormones and then 7 pills with an iron supplement.

What about Lo Loestrin Fe?

Go ahead, call it Lo Lo if you like. Lo Loestrin Fe is the lowest daily dose of estrogen available, period.

It’s got a unique 24-2-2 format. The first 24 pills are active pills with 1mg norethindrone acetate and 10mcg ethinyl estradiol. Then, the next two pills are also active but only contain the 10mcg of ethinyl estradiol. They have a different shape from the first 24 pills so you’ll be able to tell them apart. Finally, the last two are inactive pills with an iron supplement.

If you want a lower-estrogen option to Loestrin Fe, Lo Loestrin Fe is a great choice.

Page reviewed by:
Dr Bruce Oran
Dr Bruce Oran
Senior Medical Adviser
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Last updated November 1, 2021


Do you need a prescription for Loestrin Fe?

Yes, you need a prescription for any hormonal birth control. At EveAdam, you’ll be able to consult with a doctor who will evaluate your medical history as well as what you’re looking for in a birth control and suggest options that would meet your needs but also be safe for you to take. While hormonal birth control is safe, generally, not all of it may be safe for you, specifically — that’s why it’s important to get help from an expert. If you start an EveAdam birth control subscription, we’ll check in with you after a year just to make sure the medication is still working for you. However, we’re always available by chat so you can ask any questions you have, discuss side effects and even switch to a different medication if you’re having any issues with your birth control.

How can I get Loestrin Fe online?

Does Loestrin Fe cause weight gain?

Does Loestrin Fe help with acne?

Does Loestrin Fe stop your period?

How to take Loestrin Fe

Loestrin Fe birth control pills are more effective when they are taken at the same time every day. And this is birth control we’re talking about, so effectiveness is super important. Before you start taking your pills, pick a time that’ll be easy to stick to every day of the week. So if you get up at the crack of dawn on weekdays but sleep in on weekends, first thing in the morning might not be the best choice. (We like noon, personally, but it’s up to you.) If it’s hard for you to remember your pill every day, try setting a reminder on your phone — there are even apps to help you. When you start taking Loestrin Fe, it’s a good idea to use a back-up method like condoms for the first 7 days. This gives your body time to adjust to the pill and for its effectiveness to kick in, ensuring you’re as protected as possible. You don’t have to take your birth control pill with food, but you might have an upset stomach when you start using it. Nausea is a common side effect of using Loestrin Fe. If you experience nausea around the time you take your pill, try having it with a small meal or snack to help settle your stomach. Loestrin Fe 1/20 and Loestrin Fe 1.5/30 have 21 active pills you’ll take for the first three weeks followed by a week of inactive pills with an iron supplement — that’s when you’ll have your period.

How effective is Loestrin Fe?

What happens if I miss a pill?

What are the most common side effects of Loestrin Fe?

Side effects are a possibility for anyone who uses any kind of medication. Birth control is no different. Some side effects are much more commonly reported, and they tend to be milder too. Common side effects when you’re taking birth control pills normally go away on their own the longer you use it. The most common side effects reported when using Loestrin Fe 1/20 and 1.5/30 include:

  • Acne
  • Tender or painful breasts
  • Water retention
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Swelling in your abdomen
  • Spotting
  • Irregular periods

What should I do if I have side effects?

What are the serious side effects of Loestrin Fe?

When do I need to see a doctor?

What types of Loestrin Fe are there?

Loestrin Fe 1/20 and Loestrin Fe 1.5/30 are both combined birth control pills with 21 active pills and a week of inactive pills that contain an iron supplement. The numbers in their name represent how much of each hormone they have — Loestrin Fe 1/20 has 1mg norethindrone acetate and 20mcg (that’s micrograms) ethinyl estradiol. There is also a low-dose version called Lo Loestrin Fe, which contains the lowest daily dose of estrogen available in hormonal birth control.

Loestrin Fe 1/20 vs Blisovi 24 Fe: which is better?

What are the alternatives to Loestrin Fe?

Is there an alternative to Lo Loestrin Fe?


Make sure you read the package insert for Loestrin Fe before you start taking it. You can read further safety information at the link below.
More info

Loestrin Fe warnings

Not all women can use Loestrin Fe. The estrogen content can mean that the risk of blood clots is higher, for example. You should not take Loestrin Fe as your form of birth control if you experience any of the following:

  • If you smoke
  • If you’re over 35 years old
  • If you have a history of blood clots
  • If you have high blood pressure
  • If you’re allergic to any of the ingredients in Loestrin Fe including norethindrone acetate or ethinyl estradiol
  • If you have or had hormone sensitive cancer like breast cancer
  • If you have depression
  • If you have diabetes
  • If you have gallbladder problems
  • If you have severe headaches or migraines
  • If you have liver disease
  • If you have kidney disease
  • If you have unexplained vaginal bleeding

This list is not exhaustive. Let the licenced doctor know if you have any medical issues.

Loestrin Fe with other medicines


[1] Lindh, I, Et al. 2011. The long-term influence of combined oral contraceptives on body weight. Human Reproduction. U.K. Oxford Academic.

[2] Jaisarmarn, U Et al. 2014. A comparison of multiphasic oral contraceptives containing norgestimate or desogestrel in acne treatment: a randomized trial. National Library of Medicine. USA.