Do I Need to Shave My Head for a Hair Transplant?

The simple answer to this question is no. To answer the question fully we need to discuss the strip surgery technique “FUT” and the FUE technique of removing hair from a patient’s donor area. See here for more information on the differences between FUT and FUE hair transplants.

For an FUT procedure at HRBR there is no need to shave your head. The team will trim the small strip of hair at the back and sides of your head that will be removed in surgery. We advise patients to keep a minimum of 2cms length in this area to allow your own hair cover the small stitch before it is removed 7-10 days following surgery.

For our FUE procedures, in the vast majority of cases we advise all patients that their head will be shaved completely on the morning of surgery as is in keeping with best practice internationally. A shaved head allows the team to position the FUE instrument correctly over each hair to ensure they remove it without damaging it. Without shaving, it is not possible to correctly position the instrument without increasing the amount of grafts that could be damaged. As every patient’s donor hair is limited it is vital to protect every single hair. Learn more about how many hair grafts you might need.

A shaved head also allows the team to transplant the grafts more precisely ensuring the graft’s positioning and direction are correct. As an FUE graft is smaller by nature, as they are taken out of the scalp individually, they need more care when being handled. See image attached which shows the difference between FUT and FUE grafts when prepared.

FUE graft Vs FUT graft image

 

 

Some clinics will promote a Non Shaven FUE procedure with some calling it a “Celebrity FUE Hair Transplant”, perhaps trying to imply that this is the technique that celebrities prefer to use for discretion. We do not recommend this technique as often the results of the transplant are sub-standard.

For patients that will never shave their head we normally recommend an FUT transplant as the linear scar should not be noticeable with a minimum of 2cms length of hair at the back and sides of their head. This technique also provides the best and most robust hair grafts for transplantation as can be seen in the image above.

For those patients that like to wear their hair short, particularly our younger patients that like to have the option to style their hair whichever way they wish, the FUE technique is often recommended. The scarring from this technique is less noticeable in short hair as it is more spread-out.

Our doctors at consultation will discuss the most appropriate technique for you and will take into consideration your preference for styling your hair in the future as well as your concerns in relation to noticeability following the procedure.

To meet with one of our doctors to determine if you would be a suitable candidate for hair transplant surgery and to see how many grafts you might need contact the clinic today on 00353 1 209 1000 or info@hrbr.ie.

About the Author

Maurice Collins

DR Maurice Collins

Consultant Surgeon
MB, B.Ch, BAO, DLO, FRCSI, FRCS, FRCSEd.
Registered with the Medical Council of Ireland

Dr Collins is Medical Director and Team Principal of Hair Restoration Blackrock. He was educated at Belvedere College Dublin and did his undergraduate medical studies at University College Dublin. After graduating as a doctor he trained in General Surgery and received his Fellowship (FRCSI) in this specialty from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

Find out more about DR Maurice Collins and our team of doctors and surgeons.