Many individuals who are experiencing hair loss may not yet be ready for a hair transplant surgery.

A large portion of balding individuals fit into this category. Many women, those with diffuse thinning hair loss, and young men who have just begun balding discover they are not candidates for hair transplantation at this time.

Thankfully, there are many other hair restoration options available to them. Prescription medication, over the counter topical medications, specialized shampoos, laser therapy, and PRP therapy, to name just a few.

Upon consultation with an experienced hair restoration surgeon, the best course of treatment can be determined for your specific type of hair loss.

But with all of the great, safe, and effective medical science advancements we’ve had in the field of hair restoration, there has also been some not so great, not so safe, and not so effective hair restoration techniques that have become available.

Below is a list of some hair restoration procedures you should avoid. These procedures have not been shown to be effective. Rather, they’ve been shown to cause more damage than good. Keep in mind that while minimally invasive, hair restoration is still a medical procedure. Safety and effectiveness should be held as top priorities.

Hair flap procedure. The hair flap procedure is a serious medical surgery done in a hospital setting. It involves partially cutting a portion of the scalp on each side of the head. The scalp is still attached to the head on one side. The unattached sides are twisted and rotated so that the hair-filled piece of scalp is now covering the area of baldness. The scalp is sewn done in this position. The problems with this procedure are many, but most importantly, an unsightly ‘knot’ or ‘bulb’ is left to scar over on each side of the head. This is not cosmetically appealing. The patient trades in severe and visible scar tissue for a few more strands of hair. Additionally, this procedure is dangerous and not recommended by experienced U.S. hair restoration surgeons.

Linear graft transplant. This procedure involves transplanting grafts in a trench technique. The doctor or technician extracts grafts through scalp incision and transplants them in trenches created across the hairline and scalp. While this method is easier on the surgeon or technician, it leaves behind long scars across the scalp. Additionally, the end result does not look natural or appealing because hair doesn’t naturally grow in straight trench-like lines.

Square/Round graft transplant or Hair plug transplant. Hair plugs or square/round graft transplants are an outdated way of transplanting hair. This method produces an unnatural plug-like grouping of hairs across the scalp.