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Does Wearing Hats Cause Hair Loss Or Baldness?
Dr. Michael May (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by
Dr. Michael May (FRCS)
Updated on April 16, 2024

When it comes to hair loss, you could spend hours researching whether you’re going to be one of the two-thirds of men who experience some hair loss during their lifetime [1].

You can be bombarded with plenty of reasons why you might be about to lose all your hair – from the shampoo you use to the foods you eat. Anything can be a cause of baldness according to the internet.

Like many hair loss myths you’ll read online (a common one is that masturbation causes hair loss!), the idea that wearing a hat could suddenly make you bald doesn’t have any objective scientific evidence to substantiate the claims. That, however, doesn’t stop many people from believing it.

In this article, we’ll explain whether wearing a hat can in fact make you go bald. You’ll also discover some of the more likely reasons you might lose hair.

Table of Contents

Does wearing a hat cause hair loss?

Wearing hats won’t inherently cause hair loss, unless it’s a type of extremely tight hat that pulls on your hair roots and damages them.

The research on the link between wearing hats and experiencing hair loss is extremely limited, but one study has actually found some evidence to suggest that wearing a hat could in fact reduce the likelihood of your hair falling out [2].

The study, which was published in the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery journal, was based on 92 male identical twins. Each participant was assessed based on the severity of their hair loss and any potential other factors that might speed up the process of hair loss.

During the study, researchers found that common causes of hair loss such as smoking and dandruff led to frontal balding around the hairline.

One of the potential causes they observed was wearing a hat. Twins who were frequent hat-wearers were less likely to show signs of frontal hair loss compared with non-hat-wearing twins.

This suggests that you don’t have to worry about hanging up your favourite hat any time soon.

How can wearing a tight hat cause hair loss?

The only way your hat could cause hair loss is if you’re wearing a very tight hat or a tight hairstyle that pulls on your hair roots. This can cause traction alopecia, which is a cause of preventable hair loss.

Traction alopecia may happen when you wear very tight hairstyles that are pulled back. An example would be tight ponytails like a man bun or top knot. Hairstyles like a tight ponytail can put a lot of strain on your hair. It may also be caused by damaging styling practices like brushing your hair too aggressively.

Most hats will not pull on the hair follicles, unless it’s extremely tight and you have susceptible hair. If you notice that your hair is starting to hurt while you’re wearing your favourite hat, you might want to stop wearing it as often or find a hat that better fits your head.

Does wearing a hat cause baldness?

The chances that your favourite hat is the reason you’re going bald are highly unlikely.

However, your hat might start to make the symptoms of hair loss a bit more obvious, which is why many people may think the hat is the culprit.

While wearing your hat may mess your hair up to make the earliest signs of genetic hair loss conditions like female pattern baldness or male pattern baldness more obvious. Or you may start to notice hair shedding inside your hat when you take it off, just like you would notice hair loss in the shower or on your hairbrush.

Your hat is rarely the cause of baldness. However, if you’re losing more than 50-100 hair strands a day, there may be another reason you’re losing hair.

What causes hair loss?

When your hair is falling out, we understand that you would want to get to the bottom of the issue as soon as possible.

There are lots of different reasons why your hair may be falling out. For some of these reasons, you may just need to make a few small lifestyle changes, such as switching to a caffeine shampoo or not tying your hair in tight ponytails.

One reason may be due to the medications that cause hair loss as a side effect [3]. This is especially common with medications for acne, depression, or high blood pressure.

An iron deficiency can make your hair thin and brittle and eventually show some of the common signs of male-pattern hair loss or female-pattern baldness [4].

Other reasons why your hair is falling out include:

How to prevent hair loss

The first stage of stopping your hair loss is working out what is causing the issue. Once you know what this issue is, treating it shouldn’t be a problem.

In rare cases, you may need to take a hair supplement to help your hair grow back longer and stronger. Alternatively, you might need over-the-counter treatments like Finasteride, Dutasteride, or Minoxidil.

If you want to restore your hair, you may want to consider getting a hair transplant. At the Wimpole Clinic, we can talk you through how hair transplants work and help you decide whether it’s the right solution for you.

Book your free consultation with Wimpole Clinic today.

Does Wearing Hats Cause Hair Loss Or Baldness?, Wimpole Clinic

Dr. Michael May (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by Dr. Michael May (FRCS)Updated on April 16, 2024
The Wimpole Clinic offers FUE Hair, Beard & Eyebrow Transplants & Trichology.
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