Hair Transplant Vs Hair Replacement
Hair today, gone tomorrow? What’s best – transplant or replacement?
Losing your hair can be upsetting in many ways, making you feel less confident and even low in self-esteem. But with hair loss being a common occurrence for many, what is the best way of restoring your crowning glory and achieving a natural look with minimum pain and expense?
In recent years, many have moved away from surgical hair transplants to hair replacement systems. But what is the differences between the two systems and which one should you opt for?
Let’s take a look at them both individually:
Hair transplant procedure
Very simply, this is a surgical procedure that involves taking hair from one part of the scalp and transplanting it in another; where the hair loss is evident. This is obviously going to be fairly expensive and you are also going to need plenty of your own natural hair to enable the process to be carried out effectively. For sufferers of hair loss who have insufficient donor hair follicles then a transplant is not really a solution that will work. As for the actual procedure, this takes several hours. An anaesthetic will be used to numb the scalp and then strips of hair follicles will be taken, dissected and implanted into tiny incisions made in the scalp. Once the surgery is complete you then have to allow a period of time for the hair to ‘grow’; sometimes six months or longer so this is not a solution that delivers immediate results.
Advantages of hair transplant
- Positive aesthetic change
- Improved self-esteem
- Natural hair look
- Simple procedure under local anaesthetic
- Growth continues
Cons of hair transplant
- Cost as it can be expensive
- Hair loss in newly transplanted hair
If you do go down the route of hair transplant surgery then regard this as a major decision and not one that can be taken without much thought. If you still have a small amount of hair on your head, even this can be lost if new hair is implanted badly or incorrectly, leaving you worse off than before you started. Don’t expect a hair transplant to be a miracle cure – always be realistic about what can be achieved and how the finished result will look. As well as the pain of surgery, it is not a cheap option and it can take quite a while for any results to become apparent. Coarse regrowth can emerge and sometimes only 80% of the transplanted hair takes to the scalp and grows. What may be affordable for celebrities may be out of reach for others so never regard surgery as an easy option; if you don’t like the finished result you cannot have the procedure carried out a second time and some patients have been unlucky enough to have to have the implanted hair removed due to poor placement or unsatisfactory results when the hair grows through. Once all of your donor hair has been used up, there is nowhere to go. Failure to use a competent hair transplant surgeon can result in hair that looks unnatural and unattractive. Another thing that people fail to take account of is that that hair that you have had transplanted at your hairline will still be growing many years ahead when the rest of your ‘natural’ hair has receded; you could end up being left with a patch of hair on the top of your head surrounded by a bald area! Not a good look at any time. As with any surgery, you will also end up with small scars on your head, the amount depending upon how much hair is transplanted.
Hair replacement system
Don’t confuse these with the old-fashions types of toupees or wigs which never looked good and were always easy to spot on someone’s head. You no longer have to look like you have planted next door’s cat on your head as the new hair pieces or hair systems are a far cry from the old top knots. Today hair replacement systems have changed dramatically; the materials used to construct them are much finer and more sophisticated and the hair is often natural human hair, looking incredible when in place. Compared with the painful hair transplant procedure, using a hair replacement system provides an instant new look, no matter the reason for your hair loss. Heredity baldness, medical problems, chemotherapy and a host of other reasons can be dealt with by the application of a hair replacement system that has absolutely no limits when it comes to matching your own hair. Choose any colour, style, density, texture or length; your hair system will come ready styled and ready to put in place. Due to its versatility and affordability, the hair system has become very popular.
Advantages of hair replacement syste
- Instant results with no waiting
- Zero surgery
- Lower cost
- Great for temporary hair loss
- Suitable if you have no donor hair
Disadvantages of hair replacement sytem
- Wearers may feel they are using a wig
- Keeping up with new hairstyles
- Regular maintenance
- Requires frequent cleaning
Depending upon the hair system that you choose, different materials are used to construct it. The base will lie upon your scalp and is normally crafted from a polyurethane or lace-type of material. Whilst the best systems use high quality human hair, if you are on a budget you can also find some very good systems with synthetic hair. The hair is tied or injected into the base, providing the finished system. Which one you opt for will depend on durability and how you want it to look.
As for being attached to your scalp, this is done in a variety of ways; if fixing to existing hair is required this can be done by weaving, fusion, cabling beading, or boding. For attachment to the skin, waterproof adhesives that are totally biologically safe will be used. Whichever one you opt for or your hair technician recommends, you will be able to carry out your life just as before, active and confident that your hair system looks great.
Differences between the two systems
So what are the key differences between hair transplant and the hair replacement system?
- You are choosing between non-surgical and surgical.
- Any type of operation carries risks and there is always the chance that clients opting for the hair transplant surgery can suffer due to infection or even sudden loss of their newly transplanted hair (referred to as shock loss).
- With the hair system all that is required is to attach the new hair to your head, using the preferred method so this is zero risk.
- Hair transplant success depends very much upon the quality of the donor hair; if this is poor, the desired look may never materialise
- With the hair system, everyone can achieve the hair they want; whether you buy an off-the-shelf system or have one tailor-made to suit you, your hair will look good. It is also totally reversible so if you try a system that you do not like, you can remove it. You are not stuck with a look that you may not by happy with.
- With a transplant, what you see at the end is what you get. There is no way of giving you a ‘dummy trial’ or showing how the new hair might look. Unfortunately, you have to wait until the end of the process to see how good or bad the results are going to be.
Research is essential
No matter which hair restoration method you opt for, you need to take the time to research all of the available methods available, making sure that your health and looks will benefit. Even a quick search on the internet will show you several non-surgical hair replacement system and hair transplantation comparisons. It’s all about finding the best option to suit you and your lifestyle. To begin with, don’t get bogged down with looking at intricate details such as construction, type of hair or style. What you need to focus on is the differences between the two methods and which one will suit you best; when you are swimming, dancing or dating, you need to know that your hair will look absolutely natural and that your confidence will be 100% restored. Even when things get up close and personal, you need to feel that those nearest to you will not be put off by hair that looks dubious.
Only ever use a reliable and registered hair restoration clinic. When you go for your consultation, ask how many sessions you will need for your type of hair; finer hair may need more sessions but much will depend on the area to be grafted. If you are completely bald, more time will need to be allowed. Also ask to see photos of past patients; look for natural looking hairlines and a result that looks impressive. Find out about diseases and infection and what your total cost is likely to be as it will always be a lot more than a hair system.
If your research is leading you in the direction of a hair system, again you need to look for an expert provider who can match your system precisely to look like your own hair. The will need to match the tone, appearance and style. This will be based upon your facial features, age and complexion. Also look at the different methods of fixing in place and which will be best suited to you. If you don’t have enough of your own hair to provide hair follicles for a graft, then a hair system will be the way to go.
Why are you losing your hair
Which system you opt for may also depend on why you are losing your hair. People often mistakenly think that male pattern baldness is a product of aging and get it can affect anyone at any time. We naturally shed about 100 hairs a day and this has no ill effect upon the amount of hair we have; it is only when this drop advances excessively that we begin to see signs of balding.
If you are veering in the direction of hair transplant surgery, find out whether or not you are a good candidate without getting swept away by the marketing hype or the clinic that does the work. Ask for a free consultation before you part with any money or make a final decision. Take into account why you are losing your hair and whether it is a temporary setback or permanent. Hair loss due to stress and chemotherapy can grow back. Loss due to hereditary baldness may be long term. Also think about your budget and lifestyle; unless you are super rich, then you may need to control your expectations slightly!
There is also a lot of misunderstanding when it comes to male hair loss and how it should be treated with people even confusing cosmetic surgery with hair transplants. As you can see, it is no wonder that for many men, particularly those under the age of 30, non-surgical hair replacement is often the preferred option, particularly if they are not sure of their hair loss pattern. Usually male pattern hair loss affects the hair on the temples, crown and top of the head with the hair at the back and sides remaining. With non-surgical hair replacement systems, there is no painful surgery or painful recovery time, scarring or swelling. Your hair can be restored quickly and without all of the many risks. By trying out a non-surgical hair replacement, you will have total peace of mind, knowing that you are not going to fall foul to a hair transplant surgeon who may use outdated methods and leave you with disappointing results.
Identifying the perfect hair replacement system
When it comes to non-surgical hair replacement systems, you are guaranteed to receive a natural looking head of beautiful hair, akin to your own. The treatment will not impact upon your lifestyle and you will not have to take time out of work for a series of medical procedures. In today’s busy world, you need an option that will suit you perfectly, no matter your age, gender, race or preferred style. Even those with the most active lives can take advantage of the solution offered by a hair replacement system quickly, easily and affordably. Whether you want your hair to be short or long or simply exactly as it was before you started to lose hair, this type of system can be carefully honed and tailored to provide a match that is 100% effective.
Designing and creating hair replacement systems is an art and one that is carefully practised by the professionals. Whether you are totally new to hair systems or replacing an older one, by working with knowledgeable experts you will receive a product that looks real, natural and suitable for your age and colouring.
- DENSITY- When it comes to density of hair, if this is not spot-on, you will look like you are wearing a wig and nowadays, there is no need for that. Your hair cannot be too thick or you will continually look as if you are wearing a furry hat! Thickness should be matched to the hair on the sides and back with the direction of the hair being a good fit for your usual hairstyle. You will have a range of options such as freestyle (hair can be brushed in any direction), set partings, crown positioned or with certain breaks in the hairline. When it comes to looking good with hair systems, less is definitely more.
- COLOUR – Your hair colours needs to be a perfect match for your age, complexion and natural hair that is left. Even if you have some grey hair, this can be incorporated, complimenting your appearance rather than detracting. You don’t want people staring at you as if you are in fancy dress, complete with Elvis-style wig! Mismatched colour can and will be a nightmare so don’t go there.
- TYPE – Whether you go for natural human hair or synthetic, much will depend on your budget and lifestyle. There is no doubt about it, human hair always looks the most realistic but then again, synthetic hair will last forever and never fade.
- CUT – Your hair system will usually come ready-styled but always get it cut by a professional hair-stylist. Don’t try trimming your hair system yourself as this can only end in disaster and one that cannot be remedied as the hair, once cut off, will not grow back. Go for a style that suits you and that you love and that you will not tire of. Even the modern short-back-and-sides with the long hair on top can be accommodated so there is no need to look old-hat or badly styled.
So there you have it; the pros and cons of surgical hair transplant versus non-surgical hair replacement systems. Now you have enough research and information to point you in the right direction of obtaining a natural looking head of hair that even your loved ones will not be able to detect as not being all yours!