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Are Hair Transplants Worth It?
Dr. Michael May (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by
Dr. Michael May (FRCS)
Updated on March 13, 2024

Hair transplantation is a booming industry. The number of people getting hair transplants has exploded over the last decade, increasing by 152% from 2010 to 2021 [1]. However, despite their growing popularity, many still have doubts about whether hair transplant surgery is right for them.

Some people are worried that the transplanted hair won’t look natural, the surgery won’t work, or that everyone will be able to tell you’ve had a hair transplant. Others just aren’t sure if hair transplants are worth the money.

Many patients who’ve had a hair transplant say in their reviews it’s one of the best things they’ve done for their self-worth and confidence.

In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of getting a hair transplant, so you can decide if a hair transplant is worth it for you.

Table of Contents

Is it worth getting a hair transplant?

Ultimately, only you can decide if it’s worth getting a hair transplant to restore your lost or thinning hair. For most people, the decision comes down to a combination of factors:

  • Affordability of the hair transplant procedure
  • How much hair you’ve lost
  • How old you are
  • Which other hair restoration treatments you’ve tried
  • Concern about hair transplant regrets

Let’s explore each of these concerns to determine how likely they are to affect you, and whether it should stop you from getting hair restoration surgery.

Are hair transplants worth the money?

Affordability is a key concern for patients considering whether hair transplantation is worth it. We find that many patients are surprised that the average hair transplant cost in the UK is just £4,820 for approximately 2,000 grafts.

There has always been a misconception about the affordability of hair transplantation surgery following Wayne Rooney’s hair transplant which reportedly cost £30,000 [2].

Dr Luciano Sciacca, a Wimpole Clinic surgeon, believes this is where many misconceptions regarding hair transplant costs come from.

“Unfortunately, I feel Wayne may have been a victim of his public profile. I don’t see a reason why anyone would pay so much if the reports are true.”

Our patients are often surprised at how affordable the Wimpole Clinic’s hair transplants are, especially as we’ve worked with high-profile patients including Arsenal’s Rob Holding. On the cost of Rob Holding’s hair transplant, Dr Sciacca said:

“We respect the privacy of all of our patients. What I can say is he did not pay much more or less than the average UK figure we discovered in our cost analysis.”

Rob Holding's social media post about his hair transplant at the Wimpole Clinic
Rob Holding's Hair Transplant Before & After

Many people assume they’re priced out of a hair transplant procedure, which forces them to take a punt on cut-price hair transplants in Turkey (sometimes paying as little as £700) and hope for the best.

While this can sometimes pay off, it’s a risky strategy. Cheap hair transplant clinics are known to cut corners when it comes to patient safety. There have been reports of taxi drivers performing hair transplant procedures, unsanitary clinic environments, and fraudulent social media campaigns that overpromise and underdeliver on hair growth results [3].

Aside from the risk of complications like infection, sepsis, and even hair transplant death, you’re more likely to receive a failed or botched hair transplant from a subpar clinic. These photos show a patient’s hair after a 5,000 graft hair transplant from a black-market Turkish clinic:

Are hair transplant worth it

Even though he may have paid less than other patients initially, he ultimately needed an additional hair transplant procedure from a good clinic to repair the botched results. All things being considered, this patient’s hair transplant costs in total were more than they should have been in part due to the need for surgery to repair the failed transplant.

That’s why it’s so important to choose a good clinic from the outset and not be tempted by a cheap hair transplant as you will be far more likely to get good results on the first attempt. Here’s how this patient’s hair looked after his repair surgery:

Patient with botched hair transplant (left) and patient with thick hair following repair transplant surgery (right)

There are plenty of excellent, affordable hair restoration clinics in the UK. We conducted a hair transplant costs survey of 104 clinics and found that the average price of a Norwood 2-3 hair transplant is £4,820. With hair transplant finance options also available, this can make quality hair transplants more affordable than you might think.

At the Wimpole Clinic, hair transplant prices start at £3,499 for FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) and FUT (Follicular Unit Transplantation), with the latter tending to be more expensive. One of our patients said:

“I had consulted with 6 others [clinics] in London and 3 outside and none of them were as transparent about cost and process. I was particularly shocked at how reasonable the price of the procedure was.”

Is a hair transplant worth it for the extent of my hair loss?

You might be thinking this if:

  1. You haven’t lost much hair, so you’re not sure a hair transplant will make much difference, or
  2. You’ve lost a lot of hair, and you don’t believe a hair transplant will be able to cover your bald spot.

Both of these points may be valid. If you’re still in the early stages of hair loss, it may be too soon for a hair transplant. Instead, try a non-surgical treatment like Minoxidil or Finasteride to help treat your hair loss. Used early and consistently enough, these treatments can prevent you from needing a hair transplant altogether.

On the flip side, those with extensive hair loss will need to temper their expectations when it comes to getting a hair transplant. High graft volume hair transplants are possible, but not everyone is eligible.

The Norwood Scale is usually used to measure hair loss in men. Here’s how many hair grafts you’re likely to need based on your hair loss zones:

Information graphic detailing the number of hair grafts needed for hair restoration

A good hair transplant surgeon should consider the number of remaining healthy hair follicles that can be transplanted when considering the appropriate amount of hair grafts. If you’re at Norwood stage 5 or later, find a hair transplant clinic that will tell you if it’s too late for a hair transplant, and give you an honest appraisal of the results you can expect.

Is it worth getting a hair transplant at my age?

The extent of your hair loss is a more important consideration than age from a hair transplant surgeon’s perspective. However, as a patient, you may decide whether it is or isn’t worth getting a hair transplant or not based on how old you are.

Most male hair transplantation patients are aged 20 to 50, while women tend to seek a female hair transplant from age 30 onwards:

Chart showing the average hair transplant age amongst men and women

Have you exhausted all other hair restoration options?

While it seems like the obvious choice, a hair transplant shouldn’t be your first port of call for hair restoration. (This is another reason to avoid clinics that are overly keen to get you in the chair.)

There are lots of alternative non-surgical hair loss treatments to try first, especially if you’re still in the early stages of hair loss.

These treatments include:

  • Finasteride — an oral tablet that reduces hair loss in those with male pattern baldness.
  • Minoxidil — a topical hair loss solution suitable for both men and women.
  • Dutasteride — an oral tablet to treat male pattern baldness that works in a similar way to Finasteride.
  • Low level laser therapy — laser hair regrowth is a pain-free, non-invasive treatment that promotes hair follicle cell growth.

These treatments can slow your hair loss so much that you might not even need a hair transplant. So it’s a good idea to exhaust these options before deciding on whether a hair transplant is worth it.

If you do decide to get a hair transplant, these treatments can also be used alongside it to prevent ongoing hair loss and keep your hair transplant in good condition.

Does anyone regret getting a hair transplant?

Unfortunately, yes — some people do regret getting a hair transplant, whether it’s because they didn’t get the results they wanted, or experienced severe hair transplant side effects. (Again, this is far more likely if you have a cheap, low-quality hair transplant abroad.)

However, most people who have had a successful hair transplant have no regrets. The best way to make sure you’re working with a great clinic that’s likely to give you fantastic results is to check out their hair transplant reviews, and their before and after hair transplant photos. Here’s a selection from our clinic:

2,400 graft hair transplant patient after ten months
2,400 graft hair transplant patient after ten months
2500 Graft Crown transplant before and after photos
2,500 graft crown hair transplant patient after 15 months

Most regrets stem from:

  • Choosing the wrong clinic
  • Choosing the wrong procedure type
  • Having unreasonable expectations
  • Neglecting hair transplant aftercare
  • Getting a hair transplant too soon

Most hair transplant clinics offer a free consultation. Make the most of this and ask lots of questions, so you have all the information you need to make the right decision.

Get a hair transplant at the Wimpole Clinic

If you’ve decided that a hair transplant is worth it, book a free consultation at our Harley Street hair transplant clinic.

We’ll diagnose your hair loss, run through all your treatment options, and address any questions and concerns you might have. If you are not sure what to ask your hair loss specialist, check out our list of questions to ask before a hair transplant to get the most out of your consultation.

We’ll never pressure you to choose any particular treatment, and will always offer honest, impartial advice. So you can choose a hair loss treatment that suits you.

Are Hair Transplants Worth It?, Wimpole Clinic

Dr. Michael May (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by Dr. Michael May (FRCS)Updated on March 13, 2024
The Wimpole Clinic offers FUE Hair, Beard & Eyebrow Transplants & Trichology.
Talk to a specialist ☎ 020 7935 1861.

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