If you are losing your hair but are not ready to take the plunge for the expense and uncertainty involved with a hair transplant, you might want to consider SMP.
What is SMP?
Scalp micropigmentation, simply referred to as SMP, is an alternative method to the more-invasive hair transplant. Like a tattoo, natural pigments are injected into the scalp to provide the look of hair follicles on a shaved head or to fill in gaps similar to shadows in regions where the hair is thinning. However, although SMP is a type of tattoo, this treatment method does not go as deep into the skin as a typical tattoo, so there is less chance for the side effects commonly associated with getting a tattoo, such as bleeding, burning, and infection.
Whether you are going completely bald or you have areas where your hair is not as thick as it used to be, scalp micropigmentation could be the solution to give you the appearance you are looking for without having to go through surgery.
If you are still uncertain, take a look at these 20 reasons to get hair tattoos
20 Compelling Reasons to Get Hair Tattoos
When you get Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP), a certified technician disguises balding scalp areas using a pen-like device specialized for that purpose. Pigment is deposited directly into the scalp to form tiny dots that look like shaved hair follicles. This technique can make it seem like you have a full head of hair.
Also known as a hair tattoo, this nonsurgical outpatient procedure does not involve hair transplantation, and it works with all hair colors, even gray. Besides concealing hair loss from male pattern baldness, this technique also covers scars and hides alopecia.
The SMP process is similar to getting a tattoo. Organic pigment is injected directly into the skin. Like any other tattoo, the results of SMP are long-lasting. If you’re concerned about hair loss, here are 20 reasons why this procedure might work for you.
1. Simulates a Full Buzz Cut
If you’re partially or completely bald, SMP can fill in the balding areas with tiny dots. The illusion it creates is that of a closely shaved buzz cut on a full head of hair. If you are losing the hairline that defines your buzz cut, SMP can restore it, and the results will be visible immediately.
Learn more about SMP buzz cuts by reviewing before and after photos online. This procedure can change your appearance dramatically, and it requires almost no maintenance.
2. Adds Density to a Thinning Hairline
Is the front of your hairline moving slowly backward? Does the hair on the sides of your head seem skimpy and sparse? By filling in those areas where scalp is visible, SMP can restore your original hairline.
When you part your hair, do you see more of a gap than a part? Is styling your hair more about covering thin areas than letting your hair flow naturally? SMP can fill in patchy spots and make the hair in those areas look thick.
3. Makes You Look Younger
We associate thick hair with health, vitality, power and youth. On the other hand, thinning hair is associated with ill-health and advancing age. Whether hair loss is minimal or massive, it still elicits these subtle and subconscious reactions. For the most part, we’re not even aware of it.
SMP won’t regrow missing hair. It will, however, help to make the hair you do have look lush, voluminous and full.
4. Makes You Feel Younger
Self-perception is closely related to what we see when we look in the mirror. A full head of thick, healthy hair can’t help but make you feel younger. Conversely, thin and straggly hair can make you feel old before your time, even when you’re otherwise young and healthy. Studies suggest that untreated hair loss can make you look up to eight years older.
Hair tattoos can make thin hair look thick and robust, even when it’s not. When you look in the mirror and see no evidence of hair loss, it can restore your youthful appearance and instill the confidence that goes with it.
5. Avenue for Self-expression
Everyone has a look that’s distinctly their own. It’s what makes us unique. The way you wear your hair reveals a lot about you. When you are bald or almost bald, you lose this form of expression. With no opportunity to distinguish yourself from everyone else, you might begin to wonder whether all bald guys look the same.
An experienced SMP professional can provide a custom treatment based on your creative input. By working with your technician to precisely achieve the desired outcome, you can start looking like the completely unique being you really are.
6. Allows for Custom Color
The organic pigments used in SMP are custom blended to precisely match your hair color for a seamless and natural look. With the right SMP practitioner, perfect results can be realized regardless of your current skin color, skin tone and hair color. Although SMP fades slightly over time, you will only need a touch up every five to seven years.
Many tattoos fade to a blueish or greenish color over time. The organic pigments used in the SMP procedure will not fade to blue because they do not contain metal. The metal used in some tattoo inks is what causes the colors to turn blue.
7. Low Maintenance Hair Loss Solution
Wigs, toupees, hair pieces, transplants, hair regrowth treatments, weaves and hair extensions are some of the options for hiding hair loss in men and women. However, the results achieved by these measures can be costly and time-consuming to maintain.
With SMP, you only need a touch up every five to seven years. Your hair can look awesome all the time, and all you have to do is enjoy it.
8. Works on Gray Hair
A carbon-based pigment is mixed with distilled water to precisely match the tone and shade of your existing gray. When gray hair is treated with SMP, it requires fewer touch ups than hair with color.
SMP works exceptionally well with salt and pepper hair. Diluting the pigments can produce over 50 shades of grey and black for a seamless effect.
When performed by a talented SMP practitioner, no one will be able to tell the difference between the tiny dots of pigment on your scalp and your own hair, even under close inspection.
9. Hides Hair Transplant Scars
Follicular Unit Transplants (FUT) and Follicular Unit Extractions (FUE) can cause various degrees of scarring. These scars resemble small white dots. The degree of scaring left by these procedures will depend on the skill of your surgeon.
More than 30 percent of people who receive hair transplants have disguised their scars with SMP. Scar tissue contains fibrous material produced by the body to supplant and heal damaged skin. SMP is an effective way to conceal scar tissue whether from transplant procedures, surgeries or other injuries.
10. Makes Thin Hair Look Thick
By filling in the patches where scalp is showing through, SMP can give thinning hair a voluminous look. While SMP can effectively camouflage bald spots, receding hairlines and sparse patches, it can also transform a head of hair that’s thin all over into tresses that look naturally lush. This all-over treatment is popular with men and women alike.
Microdots of pigment are applied all over the head to fill in the gaps between strands where hair has been lost. The tiny scalp tattoos are custom blended with your existing hair to create a look that’s full and natural. With all-over pigment coverage, your hair will show no indication of thinning.
11. Augments Hair Transplant Procedures
Combining SMP with FUT or FUE procedures packs a punch you couldn’t achieve with either procedure alone. Most hair transplant treatments, especially FUE, will lose most of their density within a few months. Even with repeated treatments, it can take up to one year to finally see satisfactory results.
When SMP is added to a hair transplant treatment, the density it creates will showcase the transplant results immediately. SMP gives you the illusion of density and thickness. The transplant gives you the texture and feel of real hair. With this combination, you can have your cake and eat it, too.
12. It’s Similar to Microblading Your Eyebrows
Eyebrow microblading is a hot trend right now, and the procedure is a close cousin of SMP. The difference is that microblading adds pigment to the brows while SMP adds pigment to the scalp.
Microblading is performed using teeny, fine-point needles rather than a tattoo gun. Pigment is deposited under the skin to form perfect, full brows that don’t wash off and last for one to three years.
SMP works by the same principle. Pigment is deposited under the skin using a pen-like instrument used exclusively for SMP procedures. Once deposited, the ink will last from five to seven years.
13. Hides Male Pattern Baldness
According to Healthline, roughly 25 percent of men with hereditary male pattern baldness begin losing hair before they reach the age of 21. Close to 66 percent of men have some measure of hair loss by the time they are 35. By the time they turn 50, nearly 85 percent of all men will have significantly less hair than they started out with.
SMP can disguise male pattern baldness so effectively that no one will know you’ve received the treatment unless you tell them. Regardless of where your hair is missing, the results are so astonishing that you may be fooled yourself.
14. Provides Instant Gratification
If you’re contemplating SMP, you won’t have to wait for results. Instead, you’re likely to see a noticeable difference almost immediately.
The treatment can last for up to seven years between touch ups. Compared to other options like weaves, hairpieces, hair clubs and spray-on hair, SMP is the easiest and speediest hair loss solution by far.
15. It’s Safe
SMP is considerably less invasive than a hair transplant. It involves no medications that could produce harmful side effects. Most people experience scalp redness for 24 to 48 hours after a session. That’s it.
The redness is usually confined to the areas where treatment was performed. The healing phase after a session lasts for about five days. If you’ve ever had a tattoo, you will find the SMP experience to be very similar.
Top-shelf organic pigments reduce the risk of an allergic reaction. You can ask your SMP professional to perform a test prior to treatment if you think you might be allergic.
There are no dangers associated with SMP when performed in a sterile environment by a trained practitioner, so be sure to choose your treatment provider wisely.
16. It’s Affordable
Hair loss solutions for men and women do not come cheap. The initial treatment can be very expensive. Additionally, the high level of maintenance that some of these treatments require can take a sizeable bite out of your pocketbook every few months.
SMP is not cheap either. However, it costs considerably less than a transplant. The total cost of an SMP treatment will depend on how much hair loss you want to hide.
Unlike with weaves, extensions and hair pieces, the results of an SMP procedure require virtually zero upkeep. The tiny hair tattoos only need a touch up every five to seven years to continue looking their best.
Time is money. The time and money you’ll save on hair maintenance with SMP can pay for the procedure over time.
17. It Won’t Turn Blue
No one wants an SMP treatment that fades to green or blue over time. Unfortunately, not all pigments are created equal. Some are more likely to fade to blue than others.
Although proper implementation of the SMP treatment is essential, employing the right pigments is just as important. When SMP is performed using a precise concentration of superior pigments and a meticulous blend of colors, the risk of fading to blue is almost nil.
Fading to blue is caused by pigments that contain metal. Before you begin treatment, make sure that your SMP professional is using high-quality organic pigments that contain no metal.
18. SMP Works for Women As Well As Men
Women lose their hair just like men. Although hair loss in women gets less attention than hair loss in men, it’s just as concerning. Forty percent of hair loss nationwide occurs in women.
The International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery conducted a survey in 2014. The survey revealed that around 21 million U.S. women are losing their hair.
By the age of 40, almost 50 percent of women confess to having thinner hair. By age 60, nearly 80 percent of women report having significantly less hair than they used to.
SMP can create the illusion of thick hair for women as well as men. Pigments are carefully injected into balding or thin areas in a color that matches your own. With no scalp showing through, all evidence of lost hair can be virtually put to rest.
Hair tattoos can restore thinning hairlines while creating the illusion of thickness in the crown area. Impeccably placed pigments can make your hair look full all over. An SMP treatment can disguise surgical scars and make bald spots caused by alopecia seem to disappear.
19. It Looks Natural
The organic pigments used in SMP treatments can be virtually indistinguishable from your own hair. Even under close examination, most people will not be able to detect the ink. That makes it perhaps the most natural-looking hair loss solution available today.
A good SMP treatment is purposefully subtle, yet it gives the impression of a thick, healthy mane. No one is likely to notice a difference in your hair. Rather, people may tell you that you’re looking good. Friends might say you look younger. However, they won’t know exactly why because the results are so realistic.
To achieve the most natural look possible, be very careful about the SMP practitioner you choose. A botched job will look unnatural, and you’ll be stuck with it for a very long time.
20. No Fake News
The hair loss market is rife with false product claims. Whether it’s a miracle hair restoration drug, an exclusive European hair thickening formula or a toupee that stays put in high wind, these products all imply that a full head of hair is right around the corner.
The truth is that many purported hair loss solutions do little or nothing to grow new hair or to help you keep the hair you’ve got.
Hair transplants can be uncertain and unpredictable. Not all transplanted follicles will survive. Many patients report that transplanted hair only lasts a few weeks before falling out.
An SMP treatment cannot replace or regrow lost hair, and it doesn’t claim to, but what it can do is give you the appearance of a completely natural hairline, reframe your face, and add a youthful look to your face. If you’re curious about what this procedure can do for you, examine before and after photos of people who have received the treatment. Whether you get the desired results will depend almost entirely on the expertise of your SMP professional.
Finding the Right Practitioner
Do your research. Choose an experienced and qualified practitioner who specializes in conditions like your own. Ask about pigment ingredients to ensure that they contain no metal.
Determine the number of sessions you will need to achieve the look you want. Assess your total costs so you won’t run out of money before the treatment is complete.
The more care you put into selecting a technician with impeccable skills, the more satisfied you will be with what you get.