The Playbook For The Modern Man

Modern Hair Transplants Have Come A Long Way & Could Be Your Follicle Saviour

To plug or not to plug? That is the hairy question all men must one day face.

To start, I’m a twenty-seven year old who’s been perpetually balding since I was 18.

It began when I reached my genetically predisposed peak of “growing my hair out” while in Uni. I had a supportive ex, who in retrospect, must have truly loved me for the sheer fact that my hair looked quite appalling.

He never spoke a word of my balding nature (note: he is colourist in Manhattan), and it wasn’t until my 40-something fill-in mum friend told me, “Honey, your hair looks like shit”, that I came out of the dark to accept that fact that I…in the prime of my youth…was balding.

Maybe that’s why I was given this piece to write in the first place. Does everyone at the D’Marge office have a beautiful head of hair? Do they not suffer from male pattern baldness? Is this a way for the beloved team to suggest I get hair plugs?

All these questions quickly came to mind when I saw this topic pop up in my inbox. Anyway, here we are. And as I sit here, with a cold draft passing over my nearly bald scalp, I can’t help but wonder if now is the time for hair plugs.

Considering The Final Plug

Lewis Hamilton is today’s hair transplant’s poster child

I can’t lie. The word “hair plugs” carries negative stigma in my mind. It reminds me of my poorly groomed, Larry David-esque uncle from the Bronx who smokes one too many cigarettes on his sun-faded plastic patio furniture. He’s the candidate for hair plugs…not me.

You love him, but you can’t help but to notice the 7 slicked over hairs that fail to cover a polished scalp. Hair plugs…plugs…gah. As a stickler for words, some I just can’t get down with.

But when presented in different context, the idea of “plugging” my dead follicles doesn’t sound all too awful. I knew if I were to go forward with this thought, I’d have to designate its alternative terms, such as “hair transplant surgery” or “hair restoration”. Just please, don’t make me call it a hair “plug”.

Knowing The Procedures

One of the procedures

After I was able to come to fruition with this, I reached out to my cousin Tommy who does plastic surgery on Long Island. He doesn’t do hair transplants specifically, but I knew he’d have the information I needed to determine if I wanted hair revival or not.

There’s a few different ways to do it that did not sound appealing whatsoever: “flap surgery”, “tissue expansion”, “scalp reduction”…what the actual f*ck? But what truly resonated, and what is most common, was hair transplantation, a technique briefly referred to before.

The process is pretty simple. Someone who’s not my cousin uproots small pieces of lush hair from a donor site, and uses it as a graft to be implanted at the dead zone. It’s either that or I opt to tattoo hair onto my bald head. My body is already 25% covered in ink – I don’t need any more unless it’s truly a work of art I can admire everyday.

My dead zone is front-and-centre, Larry David style (thank you genetics), male pattern baldness. Because I have thick hair that covers the rest of my scalp, my cousin suggested that I’d make a brilliant candidate for transplant surgery.

He’s got mates that do it and I actually went ahead to schedule a consultation with one of them.

Letting Go Of Your Insecurities

Ewan McGregor post-hair transplant

Do I feel vain or any less masculine because I want my hair back? No. Am I embarrassed to say I am considering plastic surgery for my hair? Absolutely not. I don’t believe a guy should feel discerned because he wants to have a full head of hair again.

Quite frankly, the main reason I haven’t thought about hair plugs…I mean, hair restoration surgery, is because I’ve grown used to my bi-weekly buzz. It works for my all-black, Doc Marten yielding winter-fall get up, as well as my achromatic grey, essential-only summer-spring style. I’ve grown comfortable with the low maintenance and clean look of nearly bald head.

But maybe now is the time for a change of style? Not in my clothes, but in my hair. While I don’t plan to look like Thor, more because I’m convinced I genetically can’t, a tapered comb-over with messy, long layers would be a nice change in contrast the utilitarian look I’ve been carrying for quite some time.

So in short my answer is, yes, I would get hair transplant surgery – with not an ounce of shame, vanity, or de-masculisation.

And I extend that same gesture to you out there, you balding wonder.

RELATED: How To Deal With Losing Your Hair


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