For a ‘sport’ that is so obsessed with the image of its best-known characters, it’s little wonder that hair loss
in WWE may be considered something of a problem.
While baldness may have been deemed perfectly fine for the likes of Vader and The Rock, WWE fans are wondering if the organisation’s powers that be are taking a less sympathetic view when it comes to Baron Corbin, one of the brand’s fast-rising villains.
Side-lined because of hair loss?
According to the Bleeding Cool
website, 32-year-old Corbin (real name Thomas Pestock), had been earmarked for a “push” (WWE parlance for a chance at more exposure), but suddenly seems to have been side-lined after losing in matches against both Jinder Mahal and John Cena.
Photoshop or a Better Angle? Baron Corbin pictured left as he appeared in the ring and, right, as he appeared on the commemorative plaque
This, suggests their writer, may be because long-haired Corbin looks to have thinning hair
. For proof of discontent in the WWE camp, the writer one Jude Terror says that a commemorative plaque of Baron Corbin available for sale at the WWE online shop shows the athlete with a “badly photoshopped” hairline. Indeed, photographs of Corbin taken the same night as the image used for the commemorative plaque do show quite a dramatic difference although this is possibly the result of the angle at which the promotional photo was taken.
“If the notoriously shallow-minded and petty company is embarrassed enough by Corbin’s receding hairline
to poorly photoshop it on a commemorative plaque,” says Terror, “then it makes perfect sense that they’d kill his push because of it.”
Ironically, movie villains are often bald
, as proven by a US study earlier this year. A look at the list of top 10 movie bad guys, however, suggests that the public is comfortable with a completely bald screen baddie; it seems as though a long-haired man who is thinning on top or receding perhaps isn’t quite the same.
Perceptions of men who are visibly losing their hair tend to be somewhat different to those of bald men or those with a thick head of hair, if study findings are to be believed. When asked to estimate the age of a group of men, a 2016 study noted how those with clear signs of male pattern hair loss were found to look 8 years older
than their actual age. Separate research discovered that men who were losing their hair were considered "younger, more attractive, successful and approachable" after
they reversed their thinning
. The common perceptions associated with baldness include those of power, 'manliness'
Accepting male pattern baldness
If image is the reason behind any career problems Corbin may be having - discrimination issues
aside - he may have to make a decision about how he deals with his hair loss. Whether to shave it or save it is an intensely personal call. This WWE ‘scandal’ such as it is serves to remind how difficult it can be for men - both those in the public eye and 'regular Joes' - when they are suddenly hit by genetic thinning.
Male Pattern Baldness
, which - due to the location of and type of shedding - is almost certainly what is affecting Corbin, is the most common form of hair loss worldwide. More than half of all men will be affected by it at some point in their life, and many are devastated by the way in which it can shatter both their image and their self esteem
Acceptance is the first step, whatever the decision. Then, for those who decide not to shave their heads or opt for a close crop, perhaps filled in with micropigmentation
scalp tattoos, there are proven treatment options worth exploring.
Non-surgical hair loss treatment
programmes are a popular option with men who have noticed their hair becoming thinner. Utilising either or both of the only two clinically-proven men's hair loss treatments - the DHT-blocking tablet finasteride 1mg
and topical formulations of high strength minoxidil
- courses can be recommended by hair specialists according to the individual's pattern and level of shedding, their medical and their lifestyle requirements.
This allows for the inhibition of DHT
, the hormone which is largely useless following puberty and causes hair to gradually thin and shed in men who are genetically sensitive to it, via the daily 1mg dose of finasteride. Additionally, the vasodilating high strength minoxidil solutions proactively encouraging hair growth and may be particularly useful when treating stubborn areas of male pattern hair loss, such as a receding hairline or a thinning crown.
Complementary hair growth supporting products
used alongside these established medications can further augment this approach.
Other factors which can speed up the rate of hair thinning are also explored during consultations. Some of these - including stress, over-exercising and the frequent use of certain sports nutrition products
- may well be factors likely to influence a wrestler's physiology.
If Baron Corbin does decide to get help with his thinning hair, by the looks of his current status, it could well be a beneficial route - though we wouldn't want to be the ones to bring it up to him!