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Aesthetics Practice Today

Scalp Micropigmentation

Published December 22, 2015 9:18 AM by Mina Grasso

Hair loss can be devastating to anyone at any age. Image is so crucial in the society that we live in.  The devastation of hair loss affects self-esteem and self-confidence. Men and women suffer from this life-changing experience and go through psychological stages with shock, denial, anger, depression and acceptance just like emotions that occur after a traumatic experience.

Trying to hide hair loss goes way beyond wearing a hat. Those who suffer with hair loss constantly search for solutions from hair systems, lotions and potions to hair transplant. For some, it can become an obsession.

Concealing methods can involve tedious time-consuming daily routines that can change lifestyle and sociability.  Hair systems require a significant amount of maintenance and money monthly to keep a particular look.  These individuals suffer because they cannot exercise or shower frequently, because the bond used to keep the hair system on will deteriorate if moisture is introduced.

Scalp Micropigmentation

Scalp micropigmentation, also known as SMP, is a great hair solution for those who suffer from hair loss or are left with visible scars from hair transplant surgeries. If done correctly with a well skilled technician, amazing results can be obtained that can improve the quality of life of suffering individuals.

The permanent makeup industry has evolved with new pigments, tools and techniques within the last few years. I have been involved with permanent makeup the last 20 years, but have seen more advances in the recent past. Earlier in the year I wrote about advanced eyebrow tattooing with the use of a manual tool; however, permanent makeup has also found its way into a possible option for those who suffer from hair loss. SMP is a permanent makeup procedure that provides the appearance of a hair follicle on the scalp.

Scalp Micropigmentation vs. Traditional Permanent Makeup

Scalp micropigmentation is not necessarily a new service; permanent makeup artists have attempted addressing the scalp area in the past. Different from traditional permanent makeup pigments, the pigments usually used for scalp micropigmentation do not contain iron oxide, which can be metabolized by the body. Those who have had permanent makeup are very aware that over a few years the color may change from its original color. Pigments usually used in successful scalp micropigmentation are charcoal based, which is not metabolized by the body. However, these charcoal pigments can turn to an ashy color if routinely damaged by UV rays. So, the daily use of SPF is recommended for those who opt for this type of procedure.

Artists who would attempt scalp pigmentation using traditional permanent makeup techniques on the scalp usually resulted in deposit of pigment too deep into the dermis. Depositing pigment deep in the dermis creates an image of a splotch rather than the look of a hair follicle due to the pigment migration from its original location. Specialized training is required for scalp micropigmentation technicians. The pigment must be placed specifically in the epidermis. The tools used in scalp micropigmentation are different than those used in traditional permanent makeup. The needles that are used are modified to replicate the look of a hair follicle, rather than the dot that is left behind by traditional needles.

Just as permanent makeup has provided a timesaving convenience for many as well as an improved image, I anticipate that patients who suffer from hair loss will experience a change in behavior, personality, self-esteem and self-confidence in their personal and professional lives.


thanks for the information

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tod reelery March 14, 2016 10:36 AM

Correction: Any pigment deposited in the epidermis will be shed and lost during the epidermal regeneration cycle, the only way for pigment to have any chance of longevity in the skin is for it to be implanted in the dermis.

Reno Walters December 22, 2015 8:40 PM

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    Occupation: Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner
    Setting: Miami & Upland, Calif.
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