Hair Transplant vs. SMP

Millions of men and women struggle with hair loss for one reason or another. Back in time, solutions for this problem were virtually nonexistent, but the story is much different now. With the advancements in science and technology, various methods have been developed, and we can expect even more of them in the future. Probably the most well-known hair solutions today are hair transplant and scalp micropigmentation (Scalp Micropigmentation NYC). How do they compare with one another? What’s the best choice for you? Read on to find out.

What is a hair transplant?

Hair transplant is defined as a surgical technique that removes hair follicles from other parts of the body, called "donor site," and transfers to a bald or balding part of the body, i.e., the "recipient site." The procedure is done to add more hair to an area of the head that may be thinning or balding. Here is little bit more about hair transplant for women.

What is scalp micropigmentation?

Scalp micropigmentation is a procedure wherein the practitioner relies on the use of pigment to create dots on a person’s scalp to create the appearance of hair follicles, just like those in the surrounding areas. When done properly, SMP gives bald scalp the appearance of a buzz cut while long hair gets more depth and volume.

Hair transplant vs. SMP: how they work?

Both hair transplant and SMP share the same objective – to fix hair loss and hair thinning. But their mechanisms of action and the procedure are entirely different.
For the purpose of hair transplant, the hair follicles are transferred from the donor to the recipient site. Hair is usually taken from the back of the head, but it can be obtained from other parts of the body as well.

A hair transplant is performed in a hospital or outpatient clinic. The procedure is performed by the surgeon, and a patient is under local anesthesia. Patients can request sedation to stay asleep throughout the procedure.

The surgeon performs one of two transplant methods: follicular unit transplantation (FUT) or follicular unit extraction (FUE).
A hair transplant is a demanding and long procedure, whereas SMP is entirely different.

Scalp micropigmentation is performed with a device similar to a tattoo gun, and the practitioner only needs the right pigment. There is no cutting, transplant, extraction, or anything like that. The procedure is simple, straightforward, and doesn't take long to complete.


The same way hair transplant and SMP procedures are entirely different, so are the recovery upon their completion.
Scalp micropigmentation requires virtually no downtime. After the procedure, you may notice redness for two to three days, and it's perfectly natural. The redness goes away quickly. Most people return to work either right away or within a few days.  

In other words, SMP doesn't change your day-to-day life, and you can resume your regular activities without having to pause anything.
Since hair transplant includes incisions and bandages, the recovery time lasts longer. While most people can return to work within two to five days, you can expect the transplanted hair to fall out in two to three weeks post-surgery. Sure, new hair is supposed to grow within a few months. Most people are reluctant to go to work a few days after hair transplant due to the visible signs they had work done on their scalp.

To conclude this section, SMP has a faster and easier recovery than a hair transplant.


The greatest advantage of SMP is that it does not leave scars. On the flip side, scarring is an almost inevitable byproduct of hair transplants. Plus, one of the side effects of this procedure includes visible areas of hair that don't match the surrounding hair, or it's noticeably thinner.  

This leads us back to scalp micropigmentation. The practitioner uses pigment to ensure the created dots on the scalp are exactly like hair follicles in the surrounding area. That way, the results are entirely natural, without awkward mismatch.

This is an important factor to consider when choosing between the two procedures. Many people feel subconscious about scars and visible difference in hair texture and thickness, the same way they feel insecure about hair loss and hair thinning. Scalp micropigmentaiton helps avoid these problems and could be a more practical solution for your confidence.


Being a surgical procedure, hair transplant has higher costs. For most men, the procedure is not affordable. As a result, their confidence suffers even more, and it negatively affects their quality of life.  

On the other hand, SMP is known as an affordable procedure. The price depends on the severity of hair loss and the length of your hair. However, for most people, the treatment is reasonably priced, and they can easily get it done, whereas hair transplant leaves many people without a potential solution for their hair loss.

How to choose between hair transplant and SMP?

Both procedures are similar in the way they work to tackle hair loss, but they have many differences. It can be difficult for someone to choose one specific procedure, which is why you should strive to research more. Don’t limit yourself on online search only. Schedule an appointment and visit the surgeon who performs hair transplant and clinic that provides SMP.

Generally speaking, if you're looking for an affordable, effective, and non-invasive solution for hair loss and hair thinning, then scalp micropigmentation is the ideal choice for you. On the other hand, if you don't want the camouflage effect, but real hair, then hair transplant could be the best option.  

When it comes to a hair transplant, you need to keep in mind that transplanted hair becomes thinner over time. Results are not always permanent. There's also the concern about scars and vividly different thicknesses of hair on your scalp.


Both hair transplant and scalp micropigmentation are common procedures for hair loss, but they are not the same. Each of these procedures has its advantages and disadvantages. But, SMP poses as easier, less invasive, safer, and requires almost no downtime than its counterpart. If you’re looking for SMP services, the best option is the INKredible Scalp clinic, where you can tackle your hair loss without too much hassle.

Feel free to see whats the difference between PRP vs SMP.