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Hims and Roman are both rising telemedicine brands that seek to give customers treatment services for erectile dysfunction (ED) and other health issues without relying on traditional healthcare systems.

But how do these two companies, their products, and their services stack up?

We’ll do a deep dive into each company, how they compare, and how you can decide which one may work for your needs.

About Hims

Hims is a men’s health brand founded in late 2017 when, as the story goes, the sister of founder Andrew Dudum commented on Dudum’s skin issues.

Focused on full-service telemedicine for men’s health, Hims provides digital management tools for appointments, prescriptions, and generic medications for common ED treatments like sildenafil (Viagra) and tadalafil (Cialis).

Hims also has services and treatment offerings for:

Hims has also created partner brand Hers. Hers emphasizes addressing women’s healthcare needs and the digital management of appointments, prescriptions, and treatments.

About Roman

Roman is an offshoot of a company called Ro. It was founded in 2017 as an “end-to-end” healthcare service. Their services are aimed directly at consumers, with minimal obstruction from healthcare professionals, physicians, and pharmacies.

Since their founding, Roman has aggressively advertised this service. They’ve become a recognized brand in the men’s health space, especially for their generic Viagra (sildenafil) and generic Cialis (tadalafil).

Roman’s primary service is helping you access healthcare on their platform. This includes:

  • making appointments
  • getting prescriptions
  • having easy access to a physician to guide you through your questions and concerns

Ro also operates two other major brands:

  • Rory for women’s health
  • Zero for quitting smoking

ED treatmentsViagra
Premature ejaculation (PE) treatmentssertraline
lidocaine spray
benzocaine wipes
Hair loss treatmentsfinasteride and minoxidil spray
finasteride pills
thickening shampoo and conditioner
topical finasteride and minoxidil
finasteride pills
topical minoxidil
Pricestarting at:
$16 for hair loss treatments
$3 per dose for ED treatments
$24 per month for PE treatments
starting at:
$16 for hair loss treatments
$2 per dose for ED and PE treatments
Customer reviewsA+ Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratingA BBB rating
Shippingfree shipping, discreet packagingfree 2-day shipping, discreet packaging
Insurancenot covered by insurancenot covered by insurance

Here is a high level overview of some of the pros and cons of the Hims and Roman platforms and ED treatments.


  • Having online consultations and getting your ED medications delivered may help you get the treatments you need if you aren’t mobile or want an alternative to in-person treatment.
  • Both companies offer discreet packaging, so you may be able to keep your treatments more private.
  • Both companies accept a wide variety of online payment options.
  • Both companies employ licensed healthcare professionals whose licenses and other credentials are easily accessible through the company website.


  • ED medications may not work if you need to make dietary, lifestyle, and mental health changes to treat your symptoms. Diet and lifestyle treatments may be more effective if these are the source of your ED symptoms, and they’re much cheaper.
  • Both companies clearly state that their services are not meant to be replacements for primary care doctors who can provide more detailed and holistic treatment plans for your overall health.
  • Physicians employed by these companies may not have enough knowledge of your overall health to prescribe the right medication for you. It’s important to be thorough on your questionnaire or medical history and to answer your physician’s questions honestly for the best advice and prescriptions.
  • The doctors may be general physicians rather than urologists or specialists in men’s health.
  • If you have insurance, both companies may be more expensive than what is provided by your insurance plan.
  • Hims has a broader selection of medications but is generally more expensive.
  • These services are not available in all states.

In addition to their telemedicine services, both Hims and Roman offer ED treatments. Here’s a brief overview of what each company offers.

Keep in mind that many of these ED treatments are similar in how they work but may come in different dosages that take different lengths of time to work and may be taken at different intervals, such as daily or weekly.

Some medications used to treat ED are prescribed “off-label.” This means that physicians have found therapeutic use for a medication outside of what the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved it for.

A good rule of thumb when taking any medication you haven’t used before, whether it’s completely new to you or from a different manufacturer or supplier, is to note how you feel and any side effects. Discuss this with your doctor in a follow-up appointment.

Though the FDA may approve a category of medications with active ingredients like sildenafil or tadalafil, versions on the market may contain additional ingredients or have different dosages that can affect you differently.

Hims treatments for ED

  • Sildenafil (Viagra). This oral tablet was created to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Known as a phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitor, Viagra treats the inability to get an erection, or ED. It helps smooth muscle relax, so blood vessels allow more blood flow into the penis for an erection.
  • Tadalafil (Cialis). This is another PDE5 inhibitor oral tablet meant to treat ED.
  • Avanafil (Stendra). Avanafil is another PDE5 inhibitor oral tablet for ED.
  • Sertraline. This oral tablet used off-label for PE has the same active ingredient as the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant Zoloft. For PE, sertraline helps you last longer before ejaculating during sex or masturbation.
  • Lidocaine spray. This spray-on numbing agent helps reduce nerve sensation so that you can potentially last longer before you ejaculate.

Browse ED treatments from Hims.

Roman treatments for ED

  • Sildenafil (Viagra). This PDE5 inhibitor treats ED and is sold as an oral tablet.
  • Tadalafil (Cialis). Roman offers this popular PDE5 inhibitor for ED as well.
  • Sertraline. Roman also offers a generic version of the SSRI antidepressant Zoloft as an off-label treatment for premature ejaculation.
  • Benzocaine wipes. Sold as “Roman swipes,” these wipes are pre-moistened with 4 percent benzocaine, a numbing agent that can reduce sensation in your penis so that you last longer during sex.

Browse ED treatments from Roman.

Here’s how some medications that both Hims and Roman sell work for ED and PE.

Sildenafil and tadalafil

Typically, when your penis nerves are stimulated, smooth muscles around the spongy tissue in your penis called the corpus cavernosa relax and let blood flow into this tissue to engorge it. This results in an erection.

With ED, this process is disrupted.

Sildenafil and tadalafil are in a class of drugs called PDE5 inhibitors.

These medications stop the production of the enzyme PDE5. This allows your body to produce higher levels of nitric oxide and relax your penis muscles, letting sufficient blood flow into the penis for an erection.

Lidocaine and benzocaine

Typically, stimulated nerves in your penis use sodium to communicate signals to the central nervous system called “action potential.” But you can get too stimulated and ejaculate earlier than you’d like.

Benzocaine and lidocaine help block sodium channels so nerve signals can’t take place. This means you’ll feel less sensation or none at all, so the sensation of sex or masturbation doesn’t overstimulate you.

Some people find this helps them with performance and lowers some anxiety around sex.

Here’s how the costs stack up between each company for common ED medications.

sildenafil$3 per use$2–$10 per dose
Viagra$70 per use$70 per dose
tadalafil$82 per month based on daily doses$11–$44 per dose
Cialis$958 per month based on daily doses$17–$69 per dose
sertraline$24 per month$24 per month
avanafil$59 per usenot offered
premature ejaculation spray (0.18 fluid ounces)$31not offered
benzocaine wipes$19 for starter pack$22–$27 per month
Lidocaine wipesN/A

Each brand has a slightly different process for setting you up with a physician and the ED medications you may need.

Here’s how each brand’s process works.

Physician’s assessment via Hims

Here’s what to expect when you use Hims for medical consultations and prescription services:

  1. You’ll answer a brief questionnaire describing what you’re looking for based on your symptoms and previous experience with ED products.
  2. Hims will tell you whether you’re covered and a licensed physician is available based on your location.
  3. You’ll create an online user account and supply a government-issued ID, a brief medical history and answers to questions about your lifestyle.
  4. A licensed physician will contact you about your submission. You’ll receive a brief consultation with recommendations, prescriptions, or treatment plans.
  5. Your prescription is submitted, and you’ll get any approved medications through the mail.

Physician’s assessment via Roman

Here’s generally what you can expect when you consult with Roman and their physicians before receiving a prescription or any other treatment:

  1. You’ll create an online user account with a user ID, blood pressure reading, and medical history.
  2. You’ll be connected with a licensed physician or nurse practitioner for an appointment and evaluation via video chat.
  3. Your physician will encourage you to get any necessary lab tests, and they will examine them at no extra cost.
  4. Your physician will reach out to you once they analyze your tests and give you a recommendation, treatment plan, or prescription.
  5. Your prescription is created. You’ll receive your approved medications through the mail.
  6. You can reach out to your physician anytime with questions, concerns, or for further consultation.

Both Hims and Roman have many positive and negative customer reviews. Although each company may promise easier alternatives to traditional healthcare, the marketing bluster can sometimes be deceiving.

It’s worth checking out official company websites and third-party review sites, such as Trustpilot. These can give you the broadest, unbiased sense of what to expect from these companies based on personal experience.

Here’s what customers have to say about each of these brands, both positive and negative.

Hims customer reviews

Hims doesn’t offer refunds on certain prescription medications due to regulatory controls around selling and reselling medications.

But as their website states, Hims does allow you to pause or cancel any subscription service without charge if you pause or cancel at least 48 hours before your next scheduled purchase or delivery.

Hims currently has almost 900 Trustpilot reviews with an average rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars.

Here are common reports in Trustpilot reviews about Hims and their products:

Hims pros, according to customers

  • discreet packaging
  • products work as intended, including unexpected effects like more stamina from ED products
  • website is easy to use and understand
  • orders and subscriptions are easy to start

Hims cons, according to customers

  • late or unreceived shipments
  • difficulty reaching customer service representatives, with waits up to 2 weeks or longer for responses
  • subscription charges that weren’t authorized and then not refunded for months
  • difficulty canceling orders
  • unintended side effects, such as rashes, from using skin care products

Hims is rated at 1.1 out of 5 stars on the BBB website from over 90 customer reviews. Many of the reviews cover the same concerns listed above.

Roman customer reviews

Like Hims, Roman does not offer refunds on prescription medications for regulatory reasons. However, if you feel that the company made an error filling your prescription, you can email them for a resolution.

Roman currently has only 2 Trustpilot reviews, with an average rating of 2.9 out of 5 stars. At the time of writing, one Trustpilot review refers to a hiring incident that has little to do with the company’s products, and the other complains about the pricing.

Roman is rated at 1.75 out of 5 stars on the BBB website from 10 customer reviews.

Here’s an overview of what customers have to say on the BBB website:

Roman cons, according to customers

  • lack of timely responses from customer service representatives
  • unauthorized charges for canceled subscriptions
  • subscriptions being charged but never delivered
  • concerns about personal information privacy
  • lack of flexibility in choosing doctor for telemedicine appointments

Both Hims and Roman are relatively young companies and don’t have extensive track records. This means that most complaints and legal action against these companies may not be publicly available.

It can take years for enough consumer reports and evidence to build up before a lawsuit can be successfully filed and taken to court. But here’s what we were able to find that may be relevant to each of these companies.

Hims reputation

To date, the FDA has not released warning letters targeting any products or services from Hims. No lawsuits have been filed publicly against the company, either.

Roman reputation

As with Hims, no FDA warning letters or lawsuits against the Roman brand or the Ro company have been issued or filed.

Here’s how these two companies generally use each of the ED medications.

Generic available?yesyesno
Generic namesildenafiltadalafilavanafil
Formsoral tabletoral tabletoral tablet
Strengths25 milligrams (mg), 50 mg, 100 mg2.5 mg, 5 mg, 10 mg, 20 mg50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg
Dosage50 mg10 mg as needed, or 2.5 mg daily100 mg
Take it when?30–60 minutes before sex30 minutes before sex 15 minutes before sex for 100 mg and 200 mg, 30 minutes before sex for 50 mg
Length of effectiveness4 hoursaround 36 hours6 hours
Storage68–77°F (20–25°C)25°C (77°F)68–77°F (20–25°C)

If you have been experiencing ED, PE, or hair loss, you may be considering talking with a doctor or seeking out medication. One of the biggest benefits of Hims and Roman is that you can receive an online consultation with a physician and be prescribed medications sent directly to your home.

However, there is no substitute for meeting in person with your doctor, who will better know your medical history and better understand your personal health needs.

If you have any concerns or questions that you don’t think these online providers can address, consider talking with your doctor. They can also order additional tests, if necessary, to rule out any other potential causes for what you are experiencing.

There may be a chance that recent changes to daily nutrition, mental health, or lifestyle may be contributing to these symptoms, and your doctor can help build a more personalized treatment plan for you. Your doctor can also recommend a local urologist or specialist who can meet with you too.

Finally, if you experience any concerning side effects as a result of medications received through Hims and Roman, your doctor would be a good resource to reach out to for help.

Here are some common side effects that you should watch out for when using any of the medications offered by Hims and Roman.

PDE5 inhibitor side effects

Side effects of PDE5 inhibitors like sildenafil, tadalafil, and avanafil include:

  • rashes
  • flushed skin
  • redness
  • achy muscles
  • sore throat
  • back pain
  • headache
  • runny nose
  • upset stomach
  • erection longer than 4 hours (priapism)
  • blurry vision

Sertraline side effects

Side effects of sertraline can include:

  • feeling nauseous
  • losing your appetite
  • diarrhea
  • upset stomach
  • feeling sleepy
  • having trouble falling asleep
  • sweating a lot (hyperhidrosis)
  • feeling shaky
  • feeling exhausted
  • feeling agitated

Benzocaine side effects

Benzocaine is a common numbing agent and is generally considered safe. It’s even used to help numb you before dental procedures.

Here are some uncommon but possible side effects of benzocaine:

  • skin flaking
  • skin feeling tender where you wiped
  • feeling itchy
  • feeling burning
  • feeling stinging
  • warmth or skin redness

ED treatmentschewable sildenafil and tadalafilsildenafil
not offered
PE treatmentsnot offeredsildenafil
not offered
Hair loss treatmentsnot offeredfinasteridefinasteride
minoxidil solution
minoxidil foam
ketoconazole shampoo
thickening shampoo
thickening conditioner
Price$20 for 6 dosesstarting at:
$60 for 3-month supply for hair loss treatment
$1 per pill for PE
$2–$8 per pill for ED
starting at:
$10 per month
Customer reviews2.33/5 rating on BBB based on 3 customer reviews3.95/5 rating on BBB based on 99 customer reviews2.32/5 on BBB based on 28 customer reviews
Shipping$5 per shipment, discreet packagingfree shipping, discreet packaging$3 per shipment
Insurancenot covered by insurancenot covered by insurancenot covered by insurance

Are Hims and Roman the same?

No. Although they are both men’s health brands, Hims and Roman are not owned by the same parent company. Both companies provide healthcare services, medications, and treatment options for common issues, such as hair loss, skin concerns, and ED.

Are Roman and Hims covered by insurance?

No, Roman and Hims are not covered by insurance.

Do Hims and Roman work for ED?

Hims and Roman offer brand-name and generic medications for ED, such as Viagra, sildenafil, Cialis, tadalafil, and avanafil. Whether or not those medications work for ED depends on the individual and the cause of the ED.

Is Roman online pharmacy legit?

Yes, Roman’s online pharmacy is legitimate. While some products can be sold over-the-counter (OTC) without a prescription — like at your local pharmacy — other products will require a prescription from one of Roman’s licensed healthcare professionals who will discuss and review your medical history with you before prescribing and shipping out the medication.

Roman also offers branded and generic versions of some medications, like Viagra and Cialis, so you can choose to go with a trusted brand name if you’re unsure about using a generic. You can have your medications discreetly sent to your home through Roman’s online pharmacy or your prescription filled through your local pharmacy if you prefer not to receive your medication through the mail.

However, prices may vary outside of Roman’s network, and your local pharmacy must be able to receive electronic prescriptions and be part of the Surescripts network.

Roman’s website also links to its advisory board of physical, psychological, and sexual health advisers that oversee the company’s medication and prescription procedures.

Roman is also certified through LegitScript, which ensures telemedicine companies aren’t engaged in any criminal activity and unethical practices.

Both Hims and Roman aim for the same goal: easing access to sexual health and wellness while helping to remove the stigma around medical issues like ED.

The choice is ultimately up to you, as both companies have pros and cons. But the choice should be centered around what service works for you and which one you believe will address your specific health needs.