RealSelf is an American online platform which provides information about cosmetic procedures and therapies, as well as the practitioners who carry them out.
As with many search services, it has now released its end of year round-up showing the most popular queries of 2018.
Named ‘2018 Trends in Medical Aesthetics’, this report includes a number of hair loss solutions in amongst the usual entries for procedures such as botox and liposuction.
Surgical hair restoration
In the list of Men’s Most Researched Cosmetic Treatments of 2018, hair transplant surgery was only pipped to the top spot by rhinoplasty (having a nose job).
Coming in second, American men showed a particular interest in transplants using FUE hair restoration surgery. This acronym used to stand for Follicular Unit Extraction but was renamed Follicular Unit Excision in April of this year.
The procedure is widely used to address Male Pattern Baldness and is considered ‘minimally invasive’; it involves having individual donor hair follicles taken from the areas of the scalp unaffected by genetic hair loss, namely the back and/or sides. These are then implanted in the areas where there is thinning hair or recession at the temples.
Searches for ‘FUE hair transplant’ went up by 11 per cent in 2018 compared to the previous year and placed tenth on the list of Minimally Invasive Cosmetic Treatments with the Highest Interest Growth, 2017 – 2018.
Microneedling for hair loss
These show ‘microneedling’ as a general term – as it can relate to anti-ageing facial treatments as well as hair loss – as the eighth Most Researched Minimally Invasive Cosmetic Treatment in 2018. It also placed fifth in the Minimally Invasive Cosmetic Treatments with the Highest Interest Growth, 2017 – 2018 list, with an increase of 19 per cent.
This procedure involves the use of a dermaroller – a small, handheld device similar to a lint roller – which features a roller spiked with many tiny needles. These puncture the top layer of the skin, encouraging collagen and elastin production.
It has been suggested for use by both men and women before topical hair loss treatment as it may increase absorption of this medication, though we are unaware of any substantial research or clinical proof to back this theory. Claims that it may also improve the efficacy of low-level laser therapy for hair growth when used before LLLT sessions is currently being investigated in clinical trials.
PRP hair loss treatment
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy has been growing in popularity over the past few years as a therapy to encourage accelerated wound-healing and as an anti-ageing facial treatment.
It’s bloody nature – patients have their blood taken, spun in a centrifuge, often then enriched, then injected back into the area being treated – has earned it the nickname ‘the Vampire facial’, but it is now a much enquired-about treatment for hair loss, too.
Despite being unproven to work as a standalone hair growth treatment – in fact, various studies have shown it is minimally useful on its own and is only likely to be effective when used in addition to the clinically-proven medications in cases of Male and Female Pattern Hair Loss – PRP’s entry on the RealSelf lists is unsurprising.
It pops up at number four on the Minimally Invasive Cosmetic Treatments with the Highest Interest Growth, 2017 – 2018 list, thanks to a 20 per cent boost in searches for PRP since last year. This backs an overall trend among men’s and women’s cosmetic treatments towards injectable solutions.
Some less-mentioned potential applications of PRP for hair loss are the areas of Scarring/Cicatricial Alopecia and Alopecia Areata and treating Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia. Research has found the treatment may have some merit in these instances though further studies are necessary to confirm its efficacy – the same situation as per PRP for genetic hairloss.
For anyone worried about losing their hair, the quickest way to deal with hair loss can be to visit a specialist for a consultation. Many Belgravia clients tell us they wish they’d come to us sooner, not just so they could have seen quicker results, but because they had wasted so much money beforehand trying speculative hair growth products that simply did not work!
A professional consultation will provide the key information needed to determine a suitable course of action, namely a diagnosis of the hair loss condition and recommendations for appropriate treatments as well as supplementary hair growth supporting products. From there, these can be researched and, where appropriate, purchased at leisure.
The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.