Seven time world champion: the fastest man in the world. Racing car driver Lewis Hamilton is 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 is nothing to do with his racing career – and everything to do with his hair. Did Lewis Hamilton have a hair transplant? 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.
The press certainly seem to think he’s 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 – 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 being £4,820.
Are those hair transplant rumours true? In this article, we will look at:
- Lewis Hamilton’s hair journey over the years
- Possible causes of his hair loss
- Whether Lewis Hamilton has had a hair transplant
- The kind of hair transplant he may have undergone
Lewis Hamilton’s dramatic hair transformation
Possible reasons for his hair loss
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 a hair transplant. 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 do 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.
Lewis Hamilton and his father’s hair in 2008
However, he denied this 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 a stage 3 on the Norwood Scale, as his hairline is noticeably receding. That’s unlikely to be caused by products alone.
The Norwood Scale of Hair Loss
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 transplants, or hair loss treatments.
From 2008 onwards, Lewis Hamilton tended to wear caps, generally hiding his hair. This photograph from 2010 seems to show even further receding – almost to stage 4 on the Norwood Scale.
Lewis Hamilton’s Hair in 2010
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 – but the photos in 2015 also suggest he could have been using topical 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)
Lewis Hamilton’s Hair in 2012 and 2015
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.
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, bleach-blonde short hair, to an Afro-style cut, this variety in hairstyles just wouldn’t be possible without a full head of hair.
Lewis Hamilton’s recent hairstyles
He has denied the rumours, 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 around knowing how to wash his hair contributed to the hair loss seen in early photographs.
Celebrities who may have had hair transplants
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 – both David Beckham 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.
Plus, footballers Wayne Rooney and Rob Holding have confirmed their hair transplants – 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.
Searching for inspiration? Considering a hair transplant after looking at Lewis Hamilton’s transformation? Feel inspired with our gallery of before and after photographs. We’ve restored the hair and confidence of more than 10,000 patients.
Hair treatments Lewis Hamilton could have undergone
In our expert view, Lewis Hamilton is a likely candidate for a FUE hair transplant. Lewis Hamilton has afro hair, which is curly down to the root. This makes an afro hair transplant more complex than other procedures. Dr. May, the principle surgeon at Wimpole Clinic, 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. Find out more about the difference between FUT and FUE.
Darker skin is more prone to keloid scarring, so FUT isn’t usually recommended. Instead, Lewis Hamilton’s hair transplant was probably FUE. FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) is less invasive than methods like FUT. It leaves minimal scarring, so it’s a great option for men that 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.
The Wimpole Clinic was voted the FUE Hair Transplant Clinic of the Year 2022, for the second year in a row. The 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.
Lewis Hamilton may not have undergone a hair transplant (although in our expert option, it seems likely), and could have gone for a non-surgical treatment instead. What could he have had instead?
Laser hair therapy
Low level laser hair 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.
Vitamin infusion therapy
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.
Could Lewis Hamilton’s hair loss have been caused by overwashing?
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.
Interested in a hair transplant? Find out more about how hair transplants work. If you don’t know where to begin, book in 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.
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