Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow
With a fifth of men experiencing significant hair loss by age of 20, 30 percent experiencing in their 30s and 40 percent in their 40s it is little wonder that there are so many tratements now available for male pattern baldness.
We asked hair loss expert Spencer Stevenson of SpexHair.com, someone who himself underwent botched transplant surgery after starting to go bald aged just 21, about the best treatments on the market today.
How big an issue is male pattern baldness?
Male pattern baldness is an epidemic of biblical proportions – it’s incredibly and increasingly common. It’s also an ever growing issue in society because many men are more self-conscious of their image and feel the pressure to look good. There’s nowhere to hide on social media
nowadays and the mainstream media is always interested in celebrity hair loss stories.
Are more people looking for solutions than before?
There’s been an explosion in the demand for solutions to male pattern baldness due to the immense pressure modern society places on people to always look ‘at your best’. Enquiries to SpexHair.com have tripled over the last two years. The range of hair loss treatments, services and providers is on the rise too and it’s now a multi-billion pound, international industry.
There’s a lot of sponsored and targeted online advertising campaigns, aiming to capitalise on the vulnerable and desperate but it’s vital men don’t rush into a supposed solution they don’t understand though, because only very few actually work.
What options are available?
Tying to battle baldness can be a minefield. For every good, honest and ethical doctor or clinic trying to help hair loss patients to the best of their ability, there’s a tech-driven chancer, a dodgy popup clinic or poorly trained practitioner trying to sell you a dream, that could actually make your life worse.
Few treatments actually work, but the main weapons against male pattern baldness, which are approved by bodies such as the FDA in the USA and the NHS, are minoxidil – an antihypertensive vasodilator medication – and finasteride – a hormone medication.
Shampoos such as Hair Restoration Laboratories can also fight the cause of hair loss – dihydrotestosterone (or DHT).
I’ve heard people talk about hair systems – aren’t they just toupees?
Yes – hair systems are essentially wigs. But, they’re now very discrete and natural-looking due to their delicate design. A good one is very difficult to detect, such as a very popular CNC 3D system produced in Italy that’s very popular with celebrity hair loss patients.
Many people seem to be travelling overseas for hair transplants – is this a good idea?
Be very, very careful. There are so many self-serving resources and unethical clinics around the world that will make boundless promises and, at best, waste a patient’s money. At worst, travelling overseas for a hair transplant could leave you permanently disfigured and inflict life-threatening physical or mental consequences.
Everybody would love a cheap, quick fix but naïve hair loss sufferers shouldn’t be drawn in by an offer that sounds too good to be true because it is. Some so-called experts out there aren’t at all concerned with keeping their skills up to date, investing in the latest equipment or providing proper patient care. But they are experts in shady sales tactics, smoke
and mirrors – they’ve mastered social media and Google rankings. They don’t aim for big bucks sales. Dodgy clinics make their prices ridiculously affordable, attract volume and cut corners. The poor souls who fall for their charms are then often left with physical and mental scars they may never heal from.
If you’re going to travel abroad to treat your hair loss, you absolutely must do thorough research. There’s only a handful of clinics I trust overseas and UK patients need to understand that you get what you pay for. Cost usually reflects quality, so be careful. There are great affordable options in, for example, India and Hungary with IAHRS.org surgeons, but travelling to Turkey for hair loss treatment can pose a much greater risk.
Do you think we’re heading for a cure to male pattern baldness?
No. A cure for hair loss always seems to be five years away. Things deemed more important than male pattern baldness will be cured first. Despite a
multi-billion pound a year industry, it’s just been a hard nut to crack to date. I hope my son’s generation will have a cure for baldness but I don’t think it’s likely we’ll see anything in the near future.