Scalp micropigmentation, developed by HIS Hair Clinic, is fast becoming the preferred hair loss solution for a growing number of men around the world. Over the last few years, as SMP® has grown in popularity, the technique has gained the approval and respect of the industry as one of the most viable hair loss treatments for sufferers of all kinds of hair loss related to male pattern baldness and alopecia. SMP® offers a safe, non-invasive solution with permanent, guaranteed results. Many of our clients have already tried many traditional solutions and remained dissatisfied with the results, and we are regularly informed by our clients that they "wish they had found us first". HIS practitioner

A HIS Hair Clinic practitioner assessing a client's progress

For many years, the only real options for the hair loss sufferer were hair transplant surgery, hair systems, temporary concealers or drug-based solutions such as finasteride and minoxidil. These solutions have their merits, and in many cases represent the very best option for the client, however scalp micropigmentation offers a number of advantages over these options, and can even be used in conjunction with some of them.

HAIR TRANSPLANT SURGERY

Of all hair loss treatments available before SMP®, hair transplant surgery was the only guaranteed, 'permanent' hair restoration solution and has become an internationally recognised procedure. Hair transplant clinics around the world now offer services to the general public, and although the quality of those services can vary enormously, many clinics are highly reputable and deliver some excellent results. Like all hair loss solutions, hair transplant surgery offers advantages and disadvantages. Hair transplant surgery is an invasive, surgical procedure which usually results in scarring, a legacy to which many "strip method" veterans will testify to. Even with more modern techniques such as FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction), scarring is still virtually guaranteed, although it is much less severe when the procedure is carried out my a skilled surgeon.

James Nesbitt

Many celebrities like James Nesbitt (above) use hair transplant surgery to remedy thinning hair

The biggest issue for many is a lack of suitable donor hair. As you are effectively moving hair from one part of the head to another, there is ultimately a limited supply. For this reason, many hair transplant patients require the ongoing use of temporary concealers if the amount of donor hair available was insufficient. This can be exasperated as the person ages and further hair loss is experienced, resulting in a need for more concealers or further surgery. Scalp micropigmentation can solve this problem, as a lower density of transplanted hair is required to maintain the appearance of a full head of real hair. Furthermore, the pigmentation also provides additional peace of mind in case the transplanted grafts are not retained in the way that is hoped or anticipated. At HIS Hair Clinic we firmly believe the next generation of hair transplant technology will make much more use of advanced scalp micropigmentation techniques like ours. If you would like more information about the options available please contact us.

HAIR SYSTEMS

A hair system, often referred to as a wig, hair unit or toupee, is a temporary hair loss cover-up and a very popular option amongst those who do not wish to undergo surgery. The effect created by a hair system is immediate and relatively easy to achieve, and a wide range of styles are available. Far from the stereotypical 'wig', hair systems have come a long way in recent years and offer greater realism than ever. Jason Alexander

Celebrities like John Travolta and Jason Alexander (pictured above) have used hair systems to disguise hair loss

There are however downsides that many wearers of hair systems find difficult to live with. Systems can be expensive to buy and usually involve significant ongoing costs. Many wearers also complain of poor hygiene, as the adhesives used do not allow the skin to breathe, and can make the skin smell unpleasant. The adhesives themselves can also cause significant skin damage over time. Hair systems also suffer from social stigma, resulting in secrecy and anxiety amongst many users. We have helped thousands of clients make the transition from hair system to scalp micropigmentation. The feelings usually expressed once the transition is made are usually of relief, as very little maintenance is required to keep your SMP looking its best, a stark contrast to hair system maintenance. If you wear a hair system and would like to talk to us about a better alternative, please contact us.

TEMPORARY CONCEALERS

Whilst temporary concealers may seem to be one of the less obvious hair loss treatments, at least a quarter of our clients have tried using one of these products to disguise their hair loss problem. Whilst all concealers claim to be unique in design, ultimately whether they are sprayed on, shaken on or brushed on, ultimately they all cling to existing hair to make it appear thicker and fuller. Some temporary concealers can work effectively with a remarkably small amount of real hair, and most consist purely of keratin fibres. Hair loss concealers provide a safe, immediate solution for many men, with a significant number of hair loss sufferers being able to integrate their use into everyday life fairly easily. As a short term fix, they are excellent at what they do and are unlikely to cause any adverse side effects. Most are easy to apply, as shown in the following promotional video for a product called Toppik. Whilst we understand that temporary concealers such as DermMatch, Nanogen Nanofibres and Toppik may provide a suitable solution for some people, they can be expensive to use over an extended period of time and only work if the user has sufficient hair remaining. For the person with very little or no hair, temporary concealers cannot usually be used. The use of concealers can restrict the users day to day activities, as some products can be washed, rained, blown or rubbed off, often making the user feel more conscious of their hair loss rather than more confident. Concealers offer the hair loss sufferer a quick and effective fix, but most users wind up looking for a better solution. Many of our clients share a sense of relief after their scalp micropigmentation treatments, as the constant worry and maintenance no longer needs to be a part of their lives.

DRUGS AND TOPICAL TREATMENTS

regaine-foamFinasteride, marketed as Propecia (for hair loss) and Proscar (for other medical purposes) is the world's biggest selling drug for baldness. Many other drugs exist such as Procerin, and some are sold in foam or lotion form such as minoxidil, most commonly found branded as Rogaine. Whilst their effectiveness will always be a subject of much debate, these drugs (finasteride in particular) are known to produce side-effects. Whilst most hair loss sufferers could cope with an itchy scalp, loss of libido and erectile dysfunction are side effects more likely to discourage a user from taking these drugs. There are other drugs and topical lotions available including Nanogen Nanogaine and Provillus, the results of which are highly varied depending on the individual. Certainly there has been a huge growth in the sale of topical shampoos and lotions in recent years. Products such as Revivogen, Alpecin and Nioxin are all marketed as solutions for hair loss, and some have even found their way onto the shelves of major supermarkets. There is a significant number of people who claim to have experienced benefits using one of, or a combination of these treatments. Reports include a slowing of hair loss, a complete cessation, or even the thickening and increasing density of remaining hair. These solutions do not work for everyone however, and remember that once an area of your scalp is completely bald, no drug or lotion can make your hair grow back. Drugs and topical lotions can be expensive if used for extended periods of time, and any benefits are usually quickly reversed if their use is discontinued. For the person who finds that these solutions do provide benefits, they must be prepared to continue using them over the long term.

IS SMP® THE BEST SOLUTION?

Scalp micropigmentation offers a number of advantages over traditional hair loss solutions. It is non-invasive, comes with no side effects and the results are permanent and instantaneous. Unlike hair transplant surgery it is also reversible and can be modified to adapt to your changing requirements as you get older. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. That said, other solutions also offer a number of merits. Our task is to educate all our clients about the various options available, enabling them to make an informed decision that is right for their personal circumstances. An SMP treatment in progress

An SMP treatment in progress

As with all hair loss solutions, the most suitable treatment is the one which works best for the individual. No two people are the same, and the right solution for one may not necessarily be the right one for another. It is up to the individual to compare each hair loss solution, considering the advantages and disadvantages, and make the decision that it right for them. Of course, we are always on hand to offer guidance and support. Although HIS Hair Clinic pioneered SMP® as a hair loss solution, our general hair loss advice remains 100% unbiased, honest and free.

A wide range of hair loss solutions are available for the balding man. How does SMP compare to alternative options, and which is best for you?

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