Hair loss is my favorite topic to cover as a grooming writer—or rather, hair regrowth and retention are my favorite topics to cover since there are some drastically effective ways to reverse male-pattern thinning or to actually prevent hair loss in the first place. This stuff is life-changing for a guy’s confidence, much more than most moisturizers, tubes of toothpaste, or shampoos prove to be (not that I don’t like writing about those things, too). I feel an obligation to speak openly and proudly about the hair transplant.
Sure, finasteride and minoxidil work fantastically well to keep hairs locked and loaded, but not all lost hair can be brought back without a transplant. I was severely recessed, and recession is usually gone for good without intervention. As for general crown thinning, without a transplant, you can only really restore the hairs you’ve lost in the last one or two years, and it requires persistent use of minoxidil and/or finasteride.
Roughly three-and-a-half years from my transplant, I want to show some of my results, as well as my partner’s results (as of these photos, he’s entering month eight). I’ll explain how our needs differed in terms of hair type, density, and loss patterns, what to expect in terms of results, and I’ll give you some cold-hard advice on how to approach a hair transplant (and whether or not you should just forego it altogether).
I want to make one thing clear: There’s no shame in going bald. In fact, I envy the guys who embrace it better than I could have—and I’ve got a bald father and brother, both wearing the polished dome handsomely.
Where We Got Our Hair Transplants
We both went to Turkey for our hair transplants—similar to an anonymous GQ writer who recently did the same. Specifically, my partner André and I went to Dr. Serkan Aygin’s clinic. And if you want the endorsement up front, you’re getting it: Fantastic results. Fan-fricken-tastic.
The decision to go to Istanbul wasn’t a hard one. For starters, we live in Europe, and it was only a few hours’ flight, which took some of the heat off of flying home on a long-haul flight. Secondly, the density of world-class doctors in Istanbul is astounding. You can get a $3,000 or $4,000 procedure in Turkey for what would cost you $10,000 to $30,000 stateside. (FWIW: If you want cheaper Botox than you’re getting in NYC: Book a flight to and from Kansas, get Botox, and you still could save money).
In Istanbul, at most world-class facilities, you can often spend around $2,000 to $5,000 inclusive of flights and hotels. So, mull on that before you make any decisions around geographical convenience. Not to mention, every fifth guy in the Istanbul airport has a freshly plucked dome. Not a single person is going to stare at you funny for walking through security with a rosy and scabby scalp—I promise. It’s kind of weird how normal it all feels there.