Hi it's actually shown in my profile pic! Thanks for your kind words, it's hard to remember that there is more to life !
I started losing my hair in my third year at university when I was 23, I knew quite early, even though it wasn't apparent to other people that I was going to loose my hair and that it was going to change the way I looked and felt about myself. My hair loss became the biggest thing in my life, it really affected my confidence and I felt as if the future had been stolen from me. I remember feeling at the time that I didn't want to have my life anymore, if I didnt look good and feel good then there was no way the future could be bright. I knew that it would make me more introverted, less confident, less outspoken and too self conscious to be around my friends. I felt like my hair became a symbol that I wasn't meant to acheive anything and that it proved I didn't fit in with the people that I admired. When I thought of one of my friends saying "god you are going bald dude" it made me shudder and still does. I cannot express enough how I let it get in the way of everything going on in my life, I became self-conscious around my family, began to depend alot emotionally on my girlfriend at the time whilst not really being there for her because this problem was consuming me completely. One of the worst things about losing your hair is the gradual process, checking it in the mirror everyday and catching your hair in a certain light giving you the signs of future baldness. Sometimes I would look in the mirror obsessively and get so worked up that it would ruin my week and send me into a deep depression. I became vacant with my girlfriend and family and for so long it made my daily existence so anxious. I thought that my girlfriend would leave me, I would have no confidence to attract a girl I actually liked and that it would make me the but of jokes socially and amongst my family. I also used to think that I would rather have my hair than a degree or a house or even my girlfriend, I became truly obsessed and couldn't get past the trauma. I tried beta sitosterol, saw palmetto certain types of amino acids, caffeine shampoo and head massages but nothing really helped and if anything I think the stress of maintaining this routine might have been counter productive. SMP I got to the point where I wanted a fresh start and was about to start a new job - I didnt want anybody to know that I was losing my hair because I thought it might affect me professionally. So before I started the new job I went to a nearby well known SMP clinic and decided to go for the treatment and reinvent myself with what would look like a short buzzed cut (hopefully) but with a strong hair line at least. I decided to go for it in September 2015. I was really scared going in, I thought that it wouldnt look convincing and that maybe it would just look ridiculous and artificial. My practitioner was amazing, so kind and friendly and we talked about documentaries, yoga, spiritualism and what we were up to in life. The procedure was generally painless apart from certain areas of the scalp. The first session must have lasted about three hours and when I first saw it I thought wow! I was a little worried as the dots were quite large but I was told that they would settle down when the skin had stopped swellling. Over the next couple of days I just kept myself to myself and cared for the tattoo as I was told, after the tattoo had settled down I really started to love it. I remember looking in the mirror and feeling relief and joy and like I had gotten something back, I really loved that it just appeared as though as was shaving it close by choice and that I could grow hair if I wanted. The tattoo faded slightly over the next few weeks (which is totally normal) and I had to get two other top up sessions, these top ups gave an even more natural look to my hair and made the look even more convincing. I had let myself get pretty out of shape due to several factors, but the tattoo actually got me back in the gym and made me beleive I could make something of myself again that I could be proud of. Taking this bold step has started a generally positive chain reaction of getting back into shape, dressing better, being more confident and being more optimistic about the future and my own life. I was able to transition without anyone really noticing as for the last year of my hair loss I was living abroad and nobody I knew saw me when my hair loss was really obvious. I have told everyone close to me and they cannot beleive that it isnt real. One of the major bonuses of having this done is that it stops the endless checking of your hair in the mirror, it gives you stability, you look the same everyday and you look like you have hair which is massive. I myself cant tell unless I get really close up where my 'real' hair begins and the tattoo ends. Before I got the treatment I watched all the videos on youtube and went in for a consultation. I decided that it looked great for people even with a light skin tone like me and that I was going to do it. I would say to anyone thinking about it that they shouldn't worry that it wont look natural becuase it will, the practitioners are experts and they really know what they are doing. I have had this SMP tattoo for over two years and people have rubbed my head and not even they suspect a thing, it really is like having really short but full head of hair. In my opinion getting SMP isnt a way for you to hide who you are but it is a way of surviving and staying who you are.
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David (TakingThePlunge) – Forum Co-Moderator and Editorial Assistant of the Hair Transplant Network, the Hair Loss Learning Center, the Hair Loss Q&A Blog, and the new Hair Restoration Social Network and Discussion Forum