I am about 6 months out from the procedure. Here is a before and after (before taken the day of surgery and the after taken during a 6 month checkup at the office)... http://imgur.com/4CHlC

Here is a timeline of my hair loss...

  • 24: My hair had been long for about 2 years and my scalp started to feel weird and numb It got to the point where I finally cut it. After I cut it, it looked a tiny bit thinner than normal. Nobody in my family is bald so it never occurred to me that IT had started. To this day, I'm convinced, though I likely have genetic male pattern baldness, I massively accelerated it via traction alopecia.
  • 25-30: Very, very slow progression of thinning. It was so slow, I didn't think I'd actually ever go bald.
  • 31-33: Thinning is more noticeable. I'm starting to get pretty self conscious about it.
  • 33-35: The comb-over years. About 90% of the hair on top of my head is now gone but I won't admit it.
  • 35-37: The "sly guy" shaved years. I finally shaved everything off at age 35. I hated both mirrors and photographs. I tried really hard to just accept it but dammit I hated it. I looked like a damn 50 year old.
  • 37: Horseshoe look and finalllllly hair. I had to grow my hair out in the couple of months leading to the surgery. I also had no hair post surgery for about 4 months. So I had to deal with the horseshoe look for about half a year. My hair finally started growing in at 4 months and has come in pretty nice over the last couple of months.


Edit: a picture I took about 30 minutes ago at work from my Macbook: http://imgur.com/7MaNh I'll post more when I get home if there's still interest.

Comments: 485 • Responses: 59  • Date: 

shiv4m60 karma

I'm 22 years old and I first began to lose hair at age 19. I did not notice it at all until one of my friends told me I was thinning. Till that day I spent a lot more time in the bathroom staring at my hair because I had very thick hair which I LOVED. As of right now, I've lost most of my hair but I can hide the baldness by doing a comb over. Generally people never notice that I'm losing hair unless I sit down because I'm 6'5.

Any who, questions for you - what kind of procedure was this? Did it hurt? How much did it cost you? What was going through your head on that day you decided to shave your head, did you like it?

Layokk45 karma

Sorry to hear you're dealing with this at such a young age. The combover was a bitch in my 30s... I can't imagine in my 20s.

  • It was an FUT (Follicular Unit Transplant). They cut a strip out of the back of my head, cut it into follicular units of 1, 2, or 3 and grafted each piece into my head. The 1s went in the front to give it a natural look and 2s and 3s went on the top to give fullness.
  • It hurt pretty freakin bad to be honest. I got about 15 numbing shots to the back of my head but could still feel the cut in one part so he put 5 more shots in. I still felt it. Then, I had to lay in a chair for about 7 hours while he transplanted each piece in (3500 total grafts). It was exceedingly uncomfortable. The recovery was pretty tough too.
  • It cost $10,000. The doc I went to is one of the best and doesn't take any shortcuts. He informed me that he would only be able to do the top and front given the amount of hair he had to deal with. So, I still have a "bald spot" on the crown of my head. I can get a follow up procedure to take care of that for an additional $5000 this summer.
  • I absolutely HATED shaving my head. It just looked odd and didn't fit "me." It also added about 10-15 years to my appearance. Everyone acted weird towards me except for my wife. She would love me even if I was horribly disfigured though (I'm a lucky guy). After my hair grew in from the surgery, she did admit that I looked like an old guy with a shaved head. I never, ever got used to it. I did like not having to prep my hair before going out though :)

shiv4m13 karma

I had a feeling you were going to say it hurt!

I know I'm going to have to shave my head clean soon, but I'm scared because I don't know how I'll end up looking. People often say to men going bald is to start lifting and get some muscle before it happens, but I think that's the only thing I can do to make myself look better.

Layokk17 karma

Yeah, you can help it with weight loss and muscle gain. The thing is that you really need to be thin to make it work. You can't just not be fat. You also need to have an olive (or black/brown) complexion. Being Irish, that was never going to happen for me.

Unfortunately, for the VAST majority of white people, you'll always look worse shaved than with hair. Even good looking shaved people (Jason Statham, Kelly Slater, Bruce Willis) would look way better with hair. Those good looking bald guys are incredibly rare though. Most end up looking like this guy: http://images.zap2it.com/images/tv-EP01154162/community-jim-rash.jpg

TheIdesOfLight23 karma

I'm not here to yell at any poop but...

The fuck do you mean Bruce Willis and Jason Statham would look better with hair!? Have you lost your vision?! SACRILEGE

no no no no no you leave Bruce and Jason's chrome domes out of this, dammit. If they had hair it would ruin everything.

Punksworth12 karma


yipyupyip7 karma

I think it's because most of us were introduced to him when he was already "old."

Young picard with the same hair might not work.

Layokk11 karma

The thing is, he wasn't old during TNG. He just looked old to all of us because of his hair. Here is a great video where Stewart talks about it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRZUy6S2hfM

yipyupyip8 karma

Well, he was 47 when the show started. That was damn old to me at the time :P

Layokk7 karma

yeah, I suppose. Now that I'm 37, 47 isn't "old" to me any more. Old is like 60+ which is exactly how old I thought Stewart was at the time.

CDRCRDS28 karma

Have you noticed women are treating you differently?

Do you think if you are that it may be because you are more confident?

Layokk40 karma

1000 times yes. People treat you totally differently. I've lived for years in all states of hair and without a doubt there is a difference.

No, I don't think confidence has much to do with it. I'm not trying to attract a mate as I already have an awesome wife. It's just the little things like a smile or an acknowledgement of my existence. I was invisible while bald. Nobody (male or female) seemed to even want to just say Hi or nod or smile as I'd pass by. Everyone is much nicer/more open/etc since I've had hair.

gargoyle304 karma

What about your wife? Does she seem more attracted to you? Are you having more cough "fun" now?

Layokk9 karma

No, I haven't noticed a difference. We already had a lot of fun so it's keeping on :)

kloetersound-2 karma


Layokk15 karma

Meh... it didn't bother me. Like I said, I have a very full and happy life with those that are in it. It was more of an honest observation.

chromed_dome28 karma

As a bald man, who's shaved his head for 4 years with disposable razors, Just shave it! It's cheaper, most of the time looks better, sleek. Why didn't you just bic your head and call it a day?

Layokk53 karma

I did for two years and hated it. To each their own! :)

TiltDogg16 karma

Just wanted to chime in here. I find the differences in peoples' opinions humorous and humanizing. I am a 34 year-old male with an annoyingly thick head of Slovak/Italian greasy hair. I have 3 cow licks and naturally wavy hair. I am also going grey... (don't care an iota, just for the record). The issue is that the rest of my hair waves, but the greys don't, coupled with the 3 cowlicks. I can't stand when my hair grows to 1/2 inch... it drives me crazy.

In college (ah, the exploration years), I shaved my head with a Bic and never looked back. 4 1/2 years of baby butt smooth, shaved every other day... I loved it. Lubriderm was my friend.

When I moved away from school to "start my life" and met my future wife, she could not stand the bald head, so I grew my hair in for her - on a minimal level. If that's the worst complaint I have to deal with, I'll field it. I have not shaved my head since... She likes the touch of distinction the grey adds, and I don't argue... but greys notwithstanding, I would shave my head again in a heartbeat if I didn't know it would bother her so badly.

And here is an entire conversation about people doing the exact opposite... stressing over the hair they're losing. Human differences are amazing. I agree on one aspect... go bald, or not bald... no offense to him, but not many can pull off the Larry Miller Horseshoe. I wish you guys could just have my hair!

I only have one small, inconsequential question, but I feel compelled to ask. Which do you think held the greatest impetus for you to proceed with the surgery... Was it your perception of your physical self, or your perception of how you thought others looked at you? I have never been one to care much about another's superficial opinion of me, and therefore, truly have nothing that I would physically "fix" about myself. I'm interested to see if this was solely a personal, internal journey, or one attempting to illicit a different response from society.

And please don't be offended by my question... I do not post much, and am not overly familiar with etiquette for this sort of thing.

In either event, I certainly praise your dedication and bravery. I'm a bit of a puss... I don't think I could go through with it, so you've trumped me there!

Layokk4 karma

No offense taken at all. I'd say it's internal. I'm a bit vain in that I like nice clothes, nice cars, good appearance, etc. I like to look in the mirror and like what I see.

senormisfit2012 karma

Started losing hair at 18 and once it got to a worse state where it was hard to hide around 20 I decided to shave all my hair. Thankfully my head shape was actually pretty good for a bald look, just had to tan it for a bit. I regret nothing!

Layokk4 karma

Sounds awesome! Glad to hear you like it.

Ravenwild11 karma

This is why when I started balding at 26 I just shaved my head immediately. Watching my dad do this song and dance about hairloss for 20 years was an immediate NOPE from me. I do have a decent bald tough guy look though so maybe it just works for me.

Layokk3 karma

Sounds awesome! Glad you're comfortable with the way you went.

anonymouslives8 karma

How much did the procedure cost?

Layokk9 karma


cloned_again25 karma

This is why I wont be getting this done.

Layokk0 karma


[deleted]1 karma


Layokk2 karma

No, definitely not covered. I had to borrow from my 401k to pay for it.

rokagrl138 karma

I hear that it is naturally growing hair that you can cut. Are you going to be afraid at all to cut in on the off chance it doesn't grow? Also, because you said you used to have longer hair, are you going to grow it out again?

Layokk14 karma

I've already had 2 hair cuts and no, I'm not afraid at all. It's growing great!

No, I'll never have long hair again. Due to the nature of hair transplants, it will always be thinner than regular hair. You could probably notice the thinness more if it was long. There is an optimal length of probably 2-4 inches when you've had a hair transplant.

drugtestguy7 karma

that is a good one... i can always tell even my brother had one... not as good as yours though...

Layokk4 karma

Thanks for the compliment :)

Where did your bro go? A chain (Bosley) or a specialist?

allysonwonderland2 karma

Now that you mention it, did you shop around before choosing the surgeon you used? Is there a big difference between Bosley and a specialist?

Layokk3 karma

I didn't "Shop around" per say. I did a ton of research online though. It took a while to wade through the Bullshit and obvious shills and obvious horror stories. The difference between Bosley and specialists is huge. One will mangle you for life and the other will make you look good.

rtistronnie6 karma

I'm a 22 year old guy with hair loss and receding hairline and crown. It sucks being that guy, people look at you differently and always perceive you as older. I'm thinking about hair transplant but with my limited capital it's gotta wait. It's odd, I have even felt suicidal at times where women reject me because I like like an old creeper.

Here's my condition:


Layokk6 karma

Please don't even joke about that man. Suicide is no joke. If I couldn't have done it, I really wouldn't have cared too much. You look pretty decent... I'd consider propecia to keep what you have.

rtistronnie3 karma

It gets tough, I always rebound when I have thoughts about suicide and things like that. My friends always say "Dude don't worry your a great guy" or something more to the effect "it doesn't matter your hair isn't really that important". They just don't get it. They have their perfect hair and hair products.

Currently I use rogaine for my crown and Nioxin Shampoo which does "Thicken" my hair a bit. But as soon as my hair gets greasy, the hairs come together and parts showing off my balding.

You state you used the FUT technique, I was looking at the fue technique instead.

Layokk2 karma

I don't mean to "get in your business" but I really think you need to consider talking to a professional. Conflating despondence over hair loss and clinical depression/suicide is not good.

Your hair loss should take a backseat to that. I was already pretty happy in my life and just wanted to satisfy a personal desire. If I'm way off base here, I apologize. If you are thinking FUE, be prepared to shell out 20K+. It is very expensive when you need a large area done (as you appear to need).

throwawayne36 karma

I'm going to go ahead and tell anyone considering this surgery that it's a bad idea.

I got the surgery done years ago and have regretted it ever since. It was well done, but the graphs are wiry (like pubic hair) and as the hair loss continues, the transplants become apparent. You have to either get another surgery to make up for the loss or shave your head. The drawback to the former is cost and a gradual lack of donor sites. The drawback to the latter is that you now have a large, long scar running across the back of your head advertising that you've had hair transplant surgery.

Get on Google and explore the forums where thousands of men regret getting hair transplant surgery and wish they'd simply shaved their heads to begin with. There are even new cosmetic companies cropping up detailing how they'll hide the donor scars on your shaved head with tattooed hair.

I'm currently considering getting electrolysis to get rid of my implants and shaving my head completely once my hair loss gets too bad and the transplants become obvious.

TL/DR-Hair transplants are more embarrassing in the long run than just going bald. Don't believe the hype.

Layokk2 karma

Sorry to hear, man. I don't think my transplants will "become apparent" as I was already 100% bald by the time I had it done. I wasn't filling in thinning hair... I was putting the grafts on a chrome dome. The one thing I do have to worry about continued hair loss on the sides of my scalp. At some point, I might have a gap between the transplanted area and regular hair. If that happens, I'll need another procedure (which I'm ok with if needed).

LovableContrarian5 karma

Why/how did you get traction alopecia?

Layokk6 karma

My hair was extremely wavy/curly/bushy so when it was long, I pulled it back tight ALL the time. It was always under pressure.

LovableContrarian3 karma

You have to pull it back REALLY, REALLY tight to cause these problems. Think about women who get weaves and stuff. It's really hard to cause hair loss from pressure.

Also, it's obvious when it happens. Your scalp turns all red and bumpy.

Still, though... as a dude with long hair, this is my unjust fear (I rarely even put my hair back).

Layokk5 karma

Yeah you're most probably right. It's was just a weird coincidence that it timed up perfectly with the start of my hairloss.

ThatsWhatSheSaid__5 karma


Layokk5 karma

I'm in a convenient situation where I happened to move about 4 months after the procedure. All new people who didn't know any better. My parents and wife think I look awesome.

mdeeemer5 karma

I think you've got to do what's right for yourself but I think I'm just gonna deal with it. I'll be 28 this month and my hair has slowly been thinning up front for several years. It isn't bad yet but judging from my father and grandfathers it's gonna mostly go away at some point.

Am I happy about this? Of course not, but I'd rather just shave my head when it gets to the point if needing a comb over, in my opinion trying to hide something so obvious you only make it worse. Plus, studies have shown that bald men are more intimidating and plenty of ladies go for baldies.

TL;DR : Going bald, who cares, shave your head.

Layokk2 karma

Right on, man.

Brodivh5 karma

Are you afraid to scratch your head too vigorously?

Layokk8 karma

Nope, not at all. I was super careful until the grafts fell out post surgery though (about 10 days post procedure). If you scratch vigorously then, you stand the chance of permanently losing grafts. Each graft cost me about $3 so there was a cost attached to carelessness. It got super itchy so I did scratch too hard once and pulled out a graft. It bled and I had to hold a compress against it.

After the grafts fell out (as they're supposed to post surgery), I was bald again for about 4 months and didn't matter what I did. Right now, with hair, it feels 100% normal and I don't think twice about what I do with it!

[deleted]4 karma


Layokk3 karma

Your husband's a lucky man!

Fact_of_the_matter3 karma


Layokk6 karma

I've tried biotin and it does seem to help a little with thickness with the hair you currently have. It will not regrow hair. It's definitely nowhere near a cure (as you noticed). I'm sorry to say, you're likely headed towards more hair loss.

Fact_of_the_matter1 karma

I'm probably going to be traveling to another country for vacation and I might just end up getting it done there, but I won't be getting any post surgery from that physician as I would have to do that in the USA. So, did you ever look into going outside of the country for it? It seems to me the $ will end up being much lower.

Layokk2 karma

I've thought about it but the logistics seemed overkill. I actually might do it for the 2nd procedure though.

PenitentBias3 karma

..Does this works for beards? Because damn. that ONE spot just won't grow in... You have given me hope sir! All hope of manliness is not lost!

Layokk2 karma

lol wut? I wish I could just do away with my gigantically luscious beard. Such a pain to shave.

Harbinger-of3 karma

How much did this cost?

Layokk4 karma



Worth it ?

Layokk13 karma

YES! I would do it again in a heartbeat. I had to take a loan out of my 401K to make it happen but I have zero regrets. I looooooove having hair again.

citan_uzuki3 karma

Do you have to take anti-hair loss meds now - like finasteride or minoxidil? I know some people who didn't have as profound hair loss as you (horseshoe) have to take the meds after the procedure to stop the rest of the hair from falling out.

Layokk7 karma

Nope. The doctor advised against it actually as it can have a negative effect on the transplanted hair. Anyhow that stuff only works on the crown where I am at 100% loss anyway.

kraftraum3 karma

How long did it take to heal? (Like to be presentable in public or at work)

Looks good from what I can see - any other pictures?

Layokk3 karma

It took waaaaaaaaaaaaay longer than I expected. You tend to have a noticeable scar on the back of your head so if you are shaving, you can't for a while. So you'll have to deal with a different look for about 6 months. I'm super lucky in that I get summers off in my profession (professor) so I could stay away from people in a professional setting for most of the healing period.

At work right now... I'll post some more pics when I get back home.

slicky8032 karma

"You tend to have a noticeable scar on the back of your head so if you are shaving, you can't for a while."

By this, do you mean the scar faded away after a few months? If you were so inclined to shave your head for some reason, would there be a visible scar, and would it grow back normally?

Layokk3 karma

I might be able to shave it in a year or two more (though not sure why I'd want to since I didn't like the look). Joe Rogan recently started shaving his head again after having a transplant surgery done about 10 years ago. You can kind of see his scar if you look really hard.

UDubSconnie3 karma

What specific things did you look for in your physician?

What sources do you recommend for doing research on this procedure?

Layokk5 karma

I looked for it they were recommended by the AHA.

bananabaconpizza3 karma


Layokk5 karma

It is permanent as the hair on the back and sides is different than the hair on the top of your head. There is a risk that I might lose more hair between the transplanted hair and the hair on the side. I've got my fingers crossed but you never know.

everythingisopposite3 karma

Why does Donald Duck wear a towel when he comes out of the shower, when he doesn't usually wear any pants?

thediscobison2 karma

Was it very noticeable before it healed? How long until it wasn't? Did you take precautions to hide it as it returned to normal?

Layokk3 karma

Was what noticeable?

thediscobison3 karma

Was it noticeable that skin had been grafted onto your head as it was healing? I imagined it would look like a healing surgery/wound. I don't know, though, so that's why I'm asking.

Layokk1 karma

Oh, no not really. The scalp was a little red for about a month. The scar on the back of my head was covered by hair so that wasn't noticeable at all.

For the first week though, it looked pretty bad. There were crusty grafts all over my head and I didn't really leave the house. They all fell out after about 10 days.

Mostbooked2 karma

====PLEASE RESPOND=== I am 15 and I am in big trouble my hair is very thin and if i pull up my hair you can clearly see that I dont have alot of hair left on top of my head . It started all when i was around 12 years old around then I was lossing alot of hair. Now I am letting my hair grow i do that because with long hair i can hide the bold spots. On the sides of my hair i start getting bold too. Only my backhead is "normal". I don't know what to do. I am really upset about this happening at my age. If this has happend around my 30 I wouldn't really care. But now I am in the middel of my puberty and this is really stressful. Can I grow more hair? I am only 15. Should I cut my hair? What can i possibly do? Please help me anyone. Ask for more. (sorry for my english) 

Layokk2 karma

I think you need to see a doctor. That's not normal and is not likely any form of male pattern baldness.

hassani13872 karma

Show us the scar in the back of your head!

Layokk3 karma


Scar goes through the middle of that hair. It is not noticable.

mrmax19843 karma

Does the back of your neck feel strange now, given the amount of skin that was removed?

Layokk3 karma

It did until very recently. Now it feels normal.

Classic452 karma


Layokk4 karma

I went to Dr. Lindsey in Northern Virginia. He was the only guy in my region recommended by the American Hair Loss Association. I've seen so many nightmare cases that I didn't want to shortchange myself.

Valorale3 karma


On his site he priced out grafts at $8 per. My guess is you cut a bulk rate deal?

Layokk8 karma

That's for an FUE procedure which is different than the FUT (strip method) I did. FUEs involve extracting individual hair follicles from the back and transplanting one at a time. It leaves no scar but is much more expensive.

Dick_Deadeye2 karma

Have any of your smart-ass friends given you static about your new do?

Layokk3 karma

It's weird... nobody (other than family) has ever said anything.

taleofthetub2 karma

You mentioned that there are chains and specialists. I have viewed the Bosley commercials on TV with skepticism. You chose the specialist, I assume it cost more? How much more? Do the chains not work well?

Layokk2 karma

Yeah it generally costs twice as much to go to a specialist. Chains will give you one of two results: Mangled/scarred scalp or extremely thin hair (i.e. worse than just being bald). Totally not worth it.

5krunner2 karma

Thanks for the pics, but would you be able to provide more full head-shots? Perhaps blur the face if you need to, but I'm interested in seeing the overall effect.

Layokk3 karma

I'm at the office right now so only have my macbook for photos. Just took this one... http://imgur.com/7MaNh

theboyyousaw1 karma

Is it growing at the rate of a man your age? Because I'm 20, and I've often wondered: would it grow back as thick as it is now? Or just like small baby hairs/ peach fuzz?

Layokk2 karma

Yes, it is growing at a normal rate. I just took this picture a few minutes ago: http://imgur.com/7MaNh

CrashyDriver1 karma

Why FUT and not some of the newer less invasive techniques?

Layokk1 karma

$$ and the new techniques don't work well for larger areas.

soggit1 karma

Does it grow, do you get it cut?

Layokk3 karma

Yes, it grows the same as normal hair. Yes, I've had a couple of cuts already and will probably get a cut once a month from here on out.

Oopioppi1 karma

How long and thick is the strip of skin on the back of your head that they cut off? Do they seal the would by just pulling down the skin above to seal it? Does it feel weird displacing the skin on your head this way? Does your skin feel tight around your head now? What do they do with the strip of skin that they cut off? Just throw it out?

Layokk1 karma

1 centimeter by 25 centimeter strip that ran across the back and up to on top of the ears. After extraction, they just pull the skin together and stitch it (this guy does a 2 layer suture to minimize scarring). My scalp did feel a little weird for 4-5 months but feels normal now. My skin does not feel tight at all. You'd be surprised how flexible the skin is over your scalp. The strip is what is cut into 3000 pieces and put into your head. There's nothing to throw out.