What is Scalp Micropigmentation and How Long Does it Last?
Hair transplants aren’t for everyone and sometimes can’t always cover all of the affected areas that the patient wants. Thankfully there are other procedures and methods that we can use to help create the illusion of hair density so that you’re not left with highly noticeable “see-through” areas of your scalp.
Scalp Micropigmentation is one of our newest methods to help mimic hair follicles in a way that will help decrease the contrast between your hair and scalp in areas that are thin and give the illusion of fuller hair.
How Does Scalp Micropigmentation Work?
In the past, you may tried to cover up small areas of visible scalp with products like Toppik, X-fusion, or DermMatch, but while these types of fiber and powder concealers can work well, they can be messy and need to be reapplied daily.
Scalp Micropigmentation takes that same idea but applies a more permanent solution to the scalp. This ensures that you don’t have to deal with messy powders, and you can be confident that your scalp is not showing through in dramatic fashion.
The goal of Scalp Micropigmentation is to reproduce the look of tiny hair follicles in the scalp so that it’s not so obvious that the hair has started to thin out. By adding color, in the form of small dots, to the scalp, we’re reducing the amount of normal scalp color that is showing through the thinning areas and thus creating the effect of thicker hair density. The dots are so small, no one can actually see the dots. Thousands of tiny dots placed close together simply creates a shadow on the scalp thereby making the hair appear fuller or less see-through.
This is not a method of hair transplantation and does not mean that hair will begin to fill in those already thinning areas, it’s merely a cosmetic method of changing the color perception of your scalp.
Is Scalp Micropigmentation a Tattoo?
Scalp Micropigmentation is similar to a tattoo in that we’re injecting small particles of colored ink underneath the skin in your scalp, but that’s where the similarities end.
Scalp Micropigmentation uses much smaller needles than would be used by a tattoo artist, so there’s less discomfort and pain when being applied. The color pigment that we use during this procedure is also different from typical tattoos; it is medical grade quality and uses fewer additives if any. This means that you’re less likely to have a reaction to the ink in your skin.
In addition to those elements, we’re only placing very small dots in your scalp rather than brushing on a solid color like a magic marker. The ink dots are placed much closer to the outer layer of skin in order to keep the color true to the original hue whereas traditional tattoo ink is placed deeper into the skin. Since we want your SMP to look as natural as possible, keeping the ink higher up in the skin allows for the pigments to stay in place with less risk of spreading or discoloration over time.
And finally, one of the biggest differences between scalp micropigmentation and a traditional tattoo is that it responds much better to laser treatments since the ink a lot more pure. This means that if you ever change your mind, you could potentially have the pigmentation removed through laser treatments.
How Long Does Scalp Micropigmentation Last?
One of the main questions we get regarding scalp micropigmentation is how long does it last?
Since people like to compare scalp micropigmentation to tattoos, they assume that the procedure is more or less permanent. And while that’s not wrong, scalp micropigmentation may not last forever. It typically fades over time.
As we mentioned above, scalp micropigmentation is a different process than tattooing. And while the general idea is the same behind both techniques, since we use different ink, smaller needles, and don’t go as deep into the skin as traditional tattooing does, there is a higher chance of fading over time with scalp micropigmentation.
While the ink isn’t going to ever fully fade away on its own, you may need to come in every 3-5 years for a touch-up to ensure that the micropigmentation is still achieving its intended effect.
If you’re looking to keep your scalp micropigmentation looking its best for as long as possible, we suggest limiting exposure to the sun, or at the very least cover your scalp with a solid fabric hat for at least one month after your procedure. The sun is going to be the main source of color fading when it comes to this procedure so protecting your scalp as much as possible will help keep the colors true and keep the look you want for years to come.
Scalp Micropigmentation in San Antonio, TX
If you have questions about scalp micropigmentation or would like some more information about this procedure and how it can help with thinning areas of your scalp, please contact us at the Limmer Hair Transplant Center in San Antonio, TX.
We’re happy to setup a consultation to go over any concerns you may have regarding the procedure itself or the results. We are very proud to be able to offer this procedure to all of our hair loss patients.