Having been born out of a desire to address traditional androgenetic hair loss by providing a genuine alternative to the limited range of options already available, Scalp MicroPigmentation (SMP) was quickly recognised as having the ability to provide solutions to a broader set of scalp related issues. Not least in camouflaging the scars left behind by hair transplantion surgery.
SMP was first bought to market in the UK by HIS Hair back in 2005 as a treatment for traditional hair loss – having spent 5 years developing the techniques, equipment and pigments. In those days the treatment was marketed as Micro Hair Tattooing… they would later invent the term Scalp MicroPigmentation and still hold the copyright for the term.
Early on it was realised that the treatment could be used to treat a wider range of scalp related ailments. Clients with issues such as alopecia areata and other long term skin conditions began coming through the door, leaving with their confidence restored. But by far the most common request, apart from standard SMP, was for treatment to camouflage scar tissue left behind by hair transplant surgery. For these clients, who had previously invested heavily in their hair loss solution, the journey typically saw them arrive some time after their HT. Typically they had reached the stage where their hair loss had continued to advance and their choices were limited to either additional HT surgery or shaving their head so as to avoid showing the bald patch behind the transplanted hairs. Unfortunately, the scars made a shaved head difficult, particularly for those who had gone down the FUT route.
FUE Vs FUT
There is a lot written on this site about the differences between these two approaches to HT surgery. FUT is the older type, with the harvest scars appearing as long striped around the base of the back of the head. According to the number of grafts and the skill of the surgeon these scars might be extremely large. Variations in the healing pattern from client to client could see some of these scars heal badly and produce what is know as keloid scar tissue – Everyone will have seen keloid scar tissue, it presents as angry and red, as if the skin was boiled and then frozen while still bubbling. They can be incredibly unsightly.
With FUE scars the work is most definitely less challenging, as can be seen in the image above it does not require the wearer to grow much hair to conceal them. The scars for FUE appear as small dots, no less unsettling for the client who does not necessarily want the back of their shaved head to look like it has been whacked with a meat tenderizer.
The good news is that SMP is extremely effective at camouflaging these scars. Although the treatment can be unpredictable, scar tissue does not necessarily absorb and retain the pigment in the same way as regular skin, the results can deliver what the client needs… a scalp improved to the point where shaving their head is an option.
Expectations need to be set here, the scar will not simply disappear – and any practitioner who tells you that is achievable should be treated with something like contempt. But, even with the most challenging scar it is possible to reach something like 80% camouflaged. For the majority of scars that level will reach 90%.
Where Should I Go For Treatment?
As with anything SMP the outcome will completely depend on the quality of the practitioner you put yourself in the hands of. In a market where new entrants appear almost daily, and where some of those who have been around a relatively short time declare, through their website, that they are the inventors/worlds most experienced/worlds best etc.
If you are considering SMP then we are ready and waiting to help you through the maze. Get in touch with your questions, or tell us about your journey to date… maybe you are talking to a clinic you would like to know more about.
Whatever your SMP questions, to get in touch please click here we are happy to help and look forward to hearing from you.