It has become a challenge to sort the wheat from the chaff when it comes to finding a quality SMP provider. Here we set out our stall and explain the true history of SMP and back it up with cold hard facts. For lots of reasons there is nobody better qualified. The best of them is that, back in 2002, Ian Watson and Ranbir Rai-Watson, the passionate co-owners of HIS, invented and developed the processes and techniques that would eventually be offered to the public in 2005. But more of that shortly.

The Only Way Is The Hard Way

An SMP treatment in progress

In recent times we have witnessed a veritable explosion in the number of clinics offering Scalp MicroPigmentation. It is, of course, a tough nut to crack for a legitimate operation with a series of hurdles to be overcome. There is no honest way around setting up and working very hard to earn the trust of your first few clients… assuming you have received the relevant training and are capable of producing work to a high standard it is then a process of slowly building a catalogue of satisfied clients willing to share their images to encourage those who come behind. All the while you will be adding to the depth of your experience, because, as any ex client will tell you, SMP is a journey. There are bumps and detours along the way that only an experienced practitioner can confidently deal with and still achieve perfection. The only way really is the hard way, it is why it took Ian and Ranbir three years of hard work before they treated a client.

Cutting Corners

It is easy to see why many elect to circumvent that route, choosing instead to make nefarious claims about their experience and qualifications. Almost invariably, they claim to have invented SMP themselves. The skills to build great looking websites with compelling calls to action are ubiquitous these days, anyone with the funds can create a virtual presence on the web that would, to a casual visitor, be indistinguishable from those of the established and trusted providers. Once there you might be one convincing phone call away from being booked in for treatment by someone with extremely limited experience and little understanding of what can go awry during treatment, or how to deal with it. They might also lack the appropriate insurance and other required certifications required by the territory they are operating in.

Through the years we have published many articles imploring would be SMP clients to perform exhaustive due diligence on the provider they are choosing, offering detailed advice on how to go about that research. We appreciate that, in this ever more crowded SMP marketplace, that due diligence is becoming a serious challenge, even for someone familiar with the process.

The HIS History

As mentioned earlier, SMP was invented by Ian Watson and Ranbir Rai-Watson back in 2002, but it would be 3 years of research and experimentation before they would open their doors and begin to treat clients from the world’s first clinic dedicated to SMP in Birmingham, England.

Back then the name over the door was Histudio, the business would be rebranded in 2009 to better reflect the business. In fact, the first piece of evidence is the registration of that domain, back in July, 2005. The same audit trail will identify that brand change too with the domain being registered a month short of 4 years later in June 2009. It is possible, using the website , to travel back in internet time and see both of the websites as they originally appeared. The Histudio website was the first in the world to introduce the Scalp Micropigmentation…although back then, as you will see for yourself if you visit the site, the treatment was called Micro Hair Tattooing. The switch to calling it SMP was taken to differentiate it clearly from the work of traditional tattooists.

The Business Past

In those early years demand outstripped supply significantly and the pressure to train additional practitioners was immense. Sharing their knowledge with new practitioners is something that both owners take enormous pride in, the training is demanding on many levels. There is a significant amount of learning that needs to be absorbed as well as mastering the techniques involved in actually delivering the treatment. The training program developed by Ian and Ranbir is lengthy, intense and reliably delivers graduates confident and capable of stepping up to the plate. Of course their training is ongoing as they are eventually developed to the point where they can earn the right to run a clinic of their own.

The Business Present

The whole process of training a new practitioner to the point where they are capable of taking over a clinic is extremely lengthy. This has, over the years, seen a slow and organic growth of the business. Today there are still only 15 clinics, albeit in locations all around the world. Think about that for a moment, the inventors of SMP and the most successful providers in the market have only opened 15 clinics in 15 years. It speaks to a deliberate plan, one where each forward step has been taken with the utmost care. Ian and Ranbir choose to be at the head of a business with just 15 clinics, but where each one is staffed with practitioners at the top of their field. Where, regardless of which of the clinics you are visiting, it is the name HIS Hair Clinic that is your guarantee, the hallmark of quality which makes it a certainty you are in the best of hands.

The Business Future

ian-watson   ranbir-rai-watson

With the recent amendments to the structure of the organization HIS Hair Clinic is now perfectly positioned to press on with expansive plans to grow our business. The investment in R&D will continue to evolve the SMP treatment, over the years Ian and Ranbir have developed a raft of improvements to SMP. Expanding the options available to the client, in terms of outcome, by offering broken hairlines and enhanced techniques in layering and insertion to achieve an improved “3D” appearance. The new techniques are quickly adopted by the competitors…techniques that have taken HIS months to develop to perfection will appear within days of our announcing them on the websites of our competition.

In addition, there will be a substantial improvement in the range of services we offer. The aim is to be able to address the hair loss issues of any client that comes through our doors with an appropriate solution that meets their aspirations. The considerable experience of Ian and Ranbir has been brought to bear on these new services, by leveraging their own deep knowledge of the industry along with the personal relationships they have built over the years with the world’s leading providers and surgeons you can be assured that everything we bring to market will be world class – Not to mention backed up by our second to none aftercare service.

It would be nice to think that the future features a world where it is no longer necessary to police the web for instances of images of our work being used to promote other would-be providers. A task that is beyond us right now because of the sheer volume. But being realistic it seems far more likely that the tsunami of new providers will simply continue to develop. The main reasons being demand and the inability of bona fide providers, among who HIS Hair Clinic are undoubtedly the market leaders, to expand quickly enough to meet that demand… it is entirely predictable that this vacuum of supply will create conditions where the unscrupulous will charge in. Our ambition is to put a clinic within reasonable reach of as many people as possible. The enormous challenges, logistic and financial, associated with setting up a clinic in a new territory have seen us launch a franchise scheme, which in time will enable us to build out at a far greater rate.

So in a world where identifying competent reliable SMP providers is becoming ever more fraught, it is good to know that the inventors, HIS Hair Clinics, with Ian and Ranbir firmly at the helm, are here to offer a port in a storm. Not to mention a perfect SMP capable of transforming the lives of men and women of all ages.



By Ian Watson


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