Racing car driver Lewis Hamilton is a seven-time world champion well-known for his historic racing career, holding the record for the most wins (103), pole positions (103), and podium finishes (188).
The question that’s been on everyone’s lips recently has nothing to do with his racing career and everything to do with his hair. Did Lewis Hamilton have a hair transplant?
Are those hair transplant rumours true? In this article, we will look at:
The press seems to think Lewis Hamilton has had a hair transplant, with multiple articles discussing the progression of his hairline since the late 2000s.
In the most recent photographs of Lewis Hamilton, he’s sporting thick curls which are a far cry from his receding hairline in his early 20s. He’d certainly be able to afford it, as his net worth is estimated at $285 million as of 2022, and the average cost for a hair transplant is £4,820.
Lewis Hamilton had his Formula 1 debut in 2007, at the age of only 22. Even then, his hairline was noticeably receding, and he looked like a good candidate for hair transplant surgery.
At this time, it appeared that he was suffering from male pattern baldness, the most common type of hair loss in men. This type of hair loss affects 80% of all men at varying stages of life.
By the age of 60, most men will experience some hair loss, as well as 50% of women. The scientific name for this common type of hair loss is androgenetic alopecia, and from 2007 to 2010 it looked like Lewis Hamilton was suffering from androgenetic alopecia at a very early age.
Some men begin to lose their hair in their teens or early twenties. 25% of men who experience male pattern baldness will have hair loss by the time they’re 21.
Male pattern hair loss tends to be hereditary. The idea that Lewis Hamilton may have sought a hair transplant due to male pattern baldness is backed up by the fact that his father, Anthony Hamilton, is nearly completely bald on the top of his head.
However, Hamilton denied suffering from male pattern baldness completely. He blamed washing his hair 3 times a day, and the use of poor quality shampoos and conditioners in hotels.
In photos from that time, it looks like he’s approaching at least stage 3 on the Norwood Scale, as his hairline is noticeably receding. That’s unlikely to be caused by products alone.
Stage 3 (characterised by dramatic receding of the hairline and an M-shaped pattern at the temples) of the Norwood Scale is usually the stage when men begin to consider hair transplant procedures or hair loss treatments.
From 2008 onwards, Lewis Hamilton tended to wear caps, generally hiding his thinning hair. This photograph from 2010 seems to show even further receding – almost to stage 4 on the Norwood Scale.
However, in 2015, you can see a noticeable difference in his hairline. No longer receding, his hair appears to have grown back, with a significant increase in hair density.
It does look like he’s had some sort of hair transplant however the photos in 2015 also suggest he could have been using topical or laser hair loss treatments instead. The most popular topical treatment is Minoxidil, also known as Rogaine®.
Minoxidil is a vasodilator, which is thought to work for hair loss by increasing the blood flow to your scalp. This encourages the flow of nutrients to your hair follicles.
Some men find minoxidil to be an effective treatment against hair loss, and it’s been shown to be efficient at concentrations of 2%, causing hair regrowth in different areas of the scalp. (1)
Towards the late 2010s, you could see a significant improvement in Lewis Hamilton’s hair density and length, and it was around 2019 that people really started questioning if he’d had a hair transplant operation.
The improvements seemed very unlikely to be caused by topical treatments alone. Looking at the below images, his hair is seen in a variety of styles. From long dreadlocks, and bleach-blonde short hair, to an Afro-style cut, this variety in hairstyles just wouldn’t be possible without a full head of hair.
Hamilton has denied the rumours about having a hair transplant, saying that a good education and advice from a specialist helped him to understand how to treat his hair properly.
He stated that a lack of education about how to wash his hair contributed to the hair loss seen in early photographs.
Well, there is evidence that too much shampooing (2) can lead to dryness and breakage, caused by shampoo stripping the natural oils.
If Lewis Hamilton was using harsh cleansing shampoos then it could cause hair loss, but the amount of regrowth seems unlikely. Using new lotions and conditioners could have made a noticeable difference, but they can’t prevent male pattern baldness.
However, treating your hair gently is important to prevent hair loss, as some haircare rituals can actually cause breakage and damage.
In our expert view, Lewis Hamilton is a likely candidate for a FUE hair transplant. Like rugby player Jonathan Joseph, who has had a hair transplant at the Wimpole Clinic, Lewis Hamilton has curly afro hair, which is curly down to the root.
The structure of afro hair makes an afro hair transplant more complex than other hair transplant procedures. Dr. May, our principle hair transplant surgeon, discusses this and other possible celebrity hair transplants with Mark Nolan:
A FUT hair transplant (the other commonly used procedure) is more invasive. It’s when strips of skin are taken from the back of the head. These strips of skin contain a high volume of hair follicles, and so they are distributed throughout the areas of the scalp where density is low.
Darker skin is more prone to keloid scarring, so FUT (Follicular Unit Transplantation) isn’t usually recommended. Instead, Lewis Hamilton’s hair transplant was probably FUE.
FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) is a hair transplant method where individual hair follicles are extracted from healthy donor areas and then transplanted into areas of hair thinning and/or balding. This technique is less invasive than methods like FUT. It leaves minimal scarring, so it’s a great option for men who like to have shorter hair.
As evidenced by Lewis Hamilton’s ever-changing hairstyles, it’s very natural looking and allows you to still experiment with your hair.
Lewis Hamilton may not have undergone a hair transplant (although in our expert opinion, it seems likely), and could have gone for a non-surgical treatment instead. What could he have had instead?
Low-level laser hair loss therapy is a painless, non-surgical option that involves applying low-level light lasers directly to the affected scalp.
How does this help regrow hair? Well, the lasers create activity in the cells, increasing blood flow to the hair follicles. It takes just 25 minutes per session (which should be weekly for 6 months) and is painless.
Vitamins are administered through an IV drip straight to the bloodstream, resulting in 100% absorption, as opposed to just 10% when you take vitamins orally.
Many celebrities have alopecia, leading them to seek hair loss solutions like the rest of us. If Lewis Hamilton has had a hair transplant, he wouldn’t be the only male celebrity to have done so. He’d be in good company as David Beckham, Harry Kane, and Elon Musk appear to have undergone hair transplants.
Neither have confirmed the cause of their miraculous hair growth, but from before and after images, both celebrities have a significant increase in hair density.
Footballers such as Wayne Rooney and Rob Holding have confirmed their hair transplants. In fact, Rob Holding had his successful FUE hair transplant at the Wimpole Clinic. Take a look at our list of 30 celebrities with rumoured or confirmed hair transplants.
34.7% of people who’d had a hair transplant listed their career as the reason in a 2020 census, with men being 5.3x more likely to seek treatment.
Interested in a hair transplant? Find out more about how hair transplants work.
If you don’t know where to begin, book a consultation with one of our dedicated specialists here. They’ll bring their years of expertise to help find a solution that’s right for you and answer any questions you really want to ask about hair transplant surgery.
The Wimpole Clinic was voted the FUE Hair Transplant Clinic of the Year 2023, for the third year in a row. Hair transplant surgery takes just one day to complete, and if you choose the Wimpole Clinic, we have a 97% – 100% success rate for the procedure.
See how long it takes to recover from hair transplant surgery and how it takes to see results.
Feel inspired by our gallery of before and after photographs. Our team of expert hair transplant surgeons has restored the hair and confidence of more than 10,000 patients.
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