Frequently Asked Questions

FAq's

Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP) Questions

SMP is a non-surgical procedure that remedies hair loss by pigmentation into the scalp the illusion of thousands of hair follicles. Pigment is applied with a small needle over the course of 1 to 2 sessions. This innovative procedure can be used to create a shaved head look, add density to thinning hair, or camouflage skin diseases or scarring. This affordable solution provides immediate results suitable for almost everyone.

The cost of your procedure depends on your level of hair loss and on any special requirements you may have. Since every situation is unique, we will either need photos or an in-person consultation to give you an accurate quote. The cost will increase if you have hair transplant scars to conceal, or it can decrease if you have less advanced hair loss or only a small area needing treatment.

SMP is the ideal solution to conceal female pattern baldness in a stealthy way. Women typically experience diffuse thinning that spreads throughout the top of the head. This can be especially noticeable anywhere the hair is parted. The primary goal is to reduce the contrast between the hair and the scalp. We approach this similarly to men receiving a density treatment. SMP can conceal this contrast, which creates a permanent illusion of fullness.

We use a specially formulated pigment that is created for scalp micropigmentation purposes. There’s no risk of the color turning blue or green. Our pigments are carbon based and contain all vegan ingredients absent of any colors like blue or green.

The typical SMP treatment will take roughly 3-6 hours. If you’re coming from out of town, please plan on your procedure taking 2 consecutive days so that we can ensure the most thorough results before you return home. A touch-up after 30 days is necessary and is included in the cost of your procedure.

Our work is unbelievably realistic. If you don’t tell people, they won’t know. Most clients report that family and friends think that they’re growing their hair out or that their appearance has been enhanced somehow.

Recovery is very simple, and aftercare instructions will be provided. The scalp will heal itself in 5-7 days. During the healing period, swimming, heavy sweating and sun exposure must be avoided. Keeping the scalp clean is very important. Pigments can take up to 4 full weeks to cure. The pigments will cure a couple of shades lighter than originally applied, similar to a fresh tattoo. After 3-4 weeks, the pigments will cure to their final shades, approximately 10-20% lighter than initially applied.

Clients can go years without having a touch-up. In general, we recommend a touch-up after approximately 3-5 years. Following aftercare instructions and keeping your scalp from overexposure to the elements helps ensure longer-lasting results. Much like having a tattoo, the most important way to safeguard against any fading is to keep your scalp moisturized, using sunscreen or by wearing a hat during extended periods of sun exposure.

Approximately 60% of our clients experience minimal discomfort throughout the procedure, the remainder experience discomfort in localized areas or some general tenderness may appear in broader areas after 2-3 hours.

A slight minority experience a high-level of pain. In these rare situations, we may utilize the services of a hair transplant facility in our building to numb the scalp. We also use topical lidocaine numbing that can help desensitize the scalp. After the procedure is complete pain stops and some light tenderness and tingling may be experienced for several days afterwards.

If you’re concerned about pain, we encourage you to talk to your doctor about prescription options for reducing pain.

Who SMP is For

Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP) Candidacy

The best candidates are those who have thoroughly read and considered the SMP process. This means that candidates have evaluated other hair loss treatments and have concluded that the immediate results of SMP outweigh other options. Candidates may have taken another course to treat their hair loss, such as undergoing a hair transplant, and they understand the benefits of significantly enhancing previous treatments with an SMP density treatment.

Since each client has their own unique hair loss needs, it is best to talk to our team for an evaluation of individual circumstances. Most of our clients prefer to communicate over text, but we are happy to schedule an in-person or over-the-phone consultation for you. It is important that you send us clear, well-lit photos taken at multiple angles, including the front, sides, top, and back of the head. Multiple photos will help us provide the best information about how to best tailor our treatment to you.

The ideal density candidates for a density treatment are those who have an intact hairline and can maintain sufficient hair coverage to achieve the appearance of fullness. Good candidates include the following:
Those who have had hair transplants.
Women, as they typically experience diffuse thinning, and complete loss is rare.
Those who have slowed or stopped hair loss through the use of medications or other treatments.
Those who can demonstrate that they have been slowly losing hair over the years.

When SMP is added underneath the hair, it obscures the empty scalp from showing through, thus making your hair look thicker and fuller. If the hair is too thin or is thinning quickly, a natural-looking result may be difficult to achieve, or the result may not be long lasting. For example, a 25-year-old man losing his hair rapidly would not be a good candidate for a density treatment, as the hair will likely be too thin by age 30 to provide him with a natural look. Furthermore, a 40-year-old man who has a hairline and fullness in the front but has a completely bald crown would be a similarly poor candidate for this treatment. If this is the case, a buzzcut treatment may be recommended.

Despite many concerns, gray hair has very little effect on the overall appearance of the hair following SMP. Gray hair naturally occurs sporadically throughout the scalp, and SMP has been proven to blend in well and add texture and a realistic appearance. Most procedures involve buzzing your hair, and any gray is much less pronounced when it is buzzed short. If your hair already has some gray, an appropriate shade of gray pigment will be chosen to create a natural blend. Going gray is a gradual long-term process, and SMP will continue to blend well with pigments that soften over the years, making this treatment ideal for people with increasing amounts of gray hair.

For either density or buzzcut treatments, hair transplant recipients should expect slightly longer procedure times to achieve the same results. Transplants create scarring both in donor and recipient areas, as well as alter the scalp tissue, and this can complicate the way the scalp takes on pigments, especially in any donor area scars. Additional time will help us determine how your scalp takes on pigment and address any issue with how your scalp cures pigment.

Concealing scars is a camouflage technique that makes a huge difference in the noticeability of scarring. Clients need to have appropriate expectations and understand that scarring may still be somewhat visible, depending on the age, coloring, and contouring of the scar. Gaps in hair growth inside the scars can also contribute to difficulties with concealment; therefore, we are not able to guarantee complete invisibility of these scarred areas, but huge improvements can be made. Additionally, concealing scars under longer hair will likely require additional blending, should you cut your hair shorter.

Preparing for Your Procedure

• Avoid extended sun exposure to reduce the burning and peeling of the skin.

• Discontinue Rogaine (minoxidil) and fish oil supplements one week or as soon as possible prior to your procedure date. 

• Taking Advil prior to your procedure is encouraged.

• Avoid products, such as aspirin or alcohol, that could thin the blood. 

• On the day of your procedure, shower and wash your hair and scalp thoroughly.

• Refrain from applying any topical hair products, such as hairsprays, fibers, or gels. 

• Apply a moisturizer to keep your scalp hydrated. 

• For buzzcut procedures, think over what type of hairlines you prefer.

• Eat and stay hydrated.

 

• For density treatments, please arrive with your hair at the length at which you would like to wear it.

• For buzzcut treatments, please arrive with your hair buzzed down; this means as short as possible with clippers with no guard.

Please do not blade-shave your head, as we will need to see where the existing hair is to create an optimal blend. If you are unsure about clipping your hair, please wait until you arrive for your appointment. We will discuss your options and assist you in cutting your hair.

 

If you regularly color your hair, please do so prior to your appointment. We want you to arrive the way you would like to wear your hair in the color in which you typically wear it. This will help us blend and match the SMP to create an optimal result.

Wear comfortable clothing to make your procedure more relaxing. Clothing that is easily washable is also recommended in case any pigment falls on your clothing.

Travel, office accommodations, etc.

Take the elevator to the second floor. After getting off the elevator, turn right after passing the men’s bathroom. Our office is the second-to-last door on the right-hand side of the hallway. Plenty of free parking is located both in the building’s lobby-level parking lot and in the parking garage located underneath the building. We do not have bathrooms in our suite; the bathrooms are across from the elevators on each floor of the building.

Your procedure will be performed in one of our private procedure rooms. We have very comfortable reclining procedure chairs, and blankets are available for your comfort.

Yes, feel free to use your cell phone or tablet during your procedure. It may be hard to use a tablet, as we may have you reclined in various positions that could make tablet use difficult. For your convenience, we also have wall-mounted TVs with Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Max, cable TV, etc.

Yes, some treatments can take an entire day; clients are welcome to bring food, drinks, and snacks to their appointments. We have a refrigerator and microwave available in the office. Additionally, we stock many complementary snacks and cold beverage options. At the lobby level of the building is also a cafe, and there are many restaurants within walking or short driving distances of our facility.

Lenox Square Mall and Phipps Plaza Mall are the best options. The two malls are located across the street from each other in Buckhead, about 10 minutes south of our office. Combined, these two malls provide extensive shopping options. Avalon, which is an outdoor shopping mall, is located about 20 minutes north in Alpharetta, GA. If it is outlets you are looking for, the Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta are about 25 minutes north in Woodstock, GA.

It is completely fine to have someone with you for support. The best type of companion is one who asks questions and assists in decisions, such as hairline shape and placement. Having support and a second opinion are usually positive things. Occasionally, overly concerned parties can hinder treatment by overanalyzing the treatment. Typically, this leaves the artist restricted and overly cautious, and the treatment results tend to suffer.

Atlanta is a car-oriented city, and public transportation is not typically practical. Uber, Lyft, or rental cars are the top ways to navigate the city. We do have a subway system (called MARTA; for this option, choose the Redline from Airport Station). The closest MARTA subway stations to our office are Sandy Springs Station 2.1 miles away and Dunwoody Station 2.2 miles away. These stations have connecting bus services to the office.

There are many lodging options near our office. We highly recommend Hyatt Villa Christina (3.3 miles from the office). There are dozens of additional hotels within a few miles of the office. For example, there is a hotel nearby in Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, GA.

Procedure Expectations & Results

Clients with lighter complexions are typically more susceptible to noticeable redness. Most redness will subside within 12-24 hours. Redness is typically not anymore noticeable than a sunburn.

Bleeding is unusual, however, we do occasionally see localized spotting of blood. Swelling is extremely rare and has only been observed when we’ve worked on clients who’ve recently had other procedures on their scalp like platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections.

Procedure Statistics

Procedure Type Initial procedure time Touch-up Time
Buzzcut 5.5 Hours 2.2 Hours
Corrections from another provider 3.9 Hours 2.0 Hours
Crown only 3.5 Hours 2.4 Hours
Female Density 6.2 Hours 3.1 Hours
Hairline & Temples only 2.6 Hours 1.5 Hours
Hair Transplant Scar Concealment: 2.2 Hours 1.2 Hours
Male Density 5.7 Hours 2.6 Hours

Buzzcut: 34%

Corrections from another provider: 5%

Crown only: 4%

Female Density: 23%

Hairline & Temples only: 4%

Scar Concealment: 6%

Male Density: 24%

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