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Hello Dr.Rassman and team. Just wanted to say you guys are doing an excellent job educating people like myself about hair loss and what available options are out there to cope with baldness.

I had a couple questions regarding hair density. Lets say for example two men have a hundred hairs on their hairline. Could one of the individuals hairline seem thinner then the others even though they have the same amount of hair at the hairline? As well, lets say one person has 50 hairs on their hairline and another has 100. Could the person with the 50 hairs still appear to be thicker hairline then the one with 100 hairs?

I understand it depends on hair type for example straight vs. curly hair. The curly hair would appear thicker even though there is less hair. But I want to know in individuals with black hair which is slightly wavy.

Thank you once again for your excellent work.

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I think you answered your own question. Hair density is not just about numbers when it comes to the look of fullness. It all depends on skin to hair color contrast, hair style, length, diameter of the hair shafts, wave, and distribution.

Tags: hairline, density


Dear Dr.Rassman,

I am 17 years old and I have started to worry about my hair line. The corners + the center of the hairline looks sharper than before. When I pull my hair back, the frontal hairs are actually smaller and thinner. I also have not seen any significant hair loss, so this is confusing me. According to forums like, I am a Norwood 3 and my hairline is indeed receding.

What I would like is your opinion judging by some photos. I have no earlier ones to compare it to, which is unlucky.

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We’ve been getting a lot of emails like this from teenagers asking about their hair loss. I’ll do my best to answer some of them here, but for everyone else, post your photos to, and you can get feedback from other members of the site. Keep in mind that there is only so much I can offer advice wise without an in-person examination.

Your pattern shows a Norwood Class 3 pattern. This is balding, as shown, when you pull your hair back. The corners have risen higher than a maturing hairline. You’re 17 years old, so you should get a parent involved and see a doctor if you’re concerned.

Tags: hairloss, hair loss, hairline, teenager


I was just wonder something about the frontal area when it comes to the mature hairline. You give two measurements of where the corners and the front part of the hairline should be, but what about the size of the frontal area? I think you call it the forelock? How wide can it be or does it matter?

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David LettermanThe central portion of the frontal hairline often has a forelock of hair that can be genetically independent of the surrounding hair. David Letterman has a strong forelock that lasted longer than much of his hairline, due to this genetic independence of the frontal hairline around it. It is just one of many unique traits in our appearance.

These forelocks tend to run in families and it can be quite small or even fairly large, depending upon the genetics of the individual. Also, these forelocks often are found low on the central hairline.

We posted on a similar question about forelocks and widow’s peaks a few years back: Forelocks and Widow’s Peaks

Tags: forelock, widows peak, hairline



I’m 19 year old and I’m afraid I’m losing hair, even though my father has a head full of hair, because of the irregularity of my hairline and recession at the temple.

I’ve consulted a dermatologist that said I have seborrhoeic dermatitis and that he can’t tell whether I’ve male pattern baldness, thinning or receding hairline before my dermatitis is cured but even using the foam, nizoral and pills he prescribed I still have dermatitis and I’m afraid I’m wasting time when I could be curing my hairloss.

I really want to know what do you think? Do I have a receding hairline and hairloss?

I took these pictures this morning, feel free to publish them. Thanks

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I will post your photos for the readers that may like to comment, but if a doctor examined you in person and couldn’t diagnose genetic male pattern baldness, I don’t know how we could be expected to provide a diagnosis just based on photos. It does appear that you may have some hairline recession, but you’d need your hair bulk analyzed and scalp mapped for miniaturization in order for me to be able to know if you’re thinning in various areas of the scalp. The photos don’t show me that.

I am not sure why you would not want to follow the recommendation from your doctor, who gave you a treatment plan. Did you use the medications he recommended for the length of time he prescribed? If you feel your doctor is wrong with the diagnosis, then you should seek another doctor for a second opinion. Treating seborrhoeic dermatitis wouldn’t be a waste of time, though.

And just to be clear, there isn’t a cure for hair loss.

Tags: hairloss, hair loss, hairline, dermatitis


Hi Doc,

I’m 22-years-old and have been on Finasteride for a little over a year. I had my hair properly examined 4 months ago, and the doctor confirmed that Finasteride has increased my hair density significantly.

I just noticed little black hairs on my hairline. I’m wondering what they are? I don’t believe I had these hairs when I started treatment. Could these be miniaturized hairs that may eventually turn into terminal hairs? They seem a little dark to be vellus?


P.S. You’re welcome to use these pictures on your blog.

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Finasteride 1mg doesn’t usually regrow the frontal hairline or vellus hairs. With that said, everyone has vellus hairs at the hairline, so perhaps you are just noticing them for the first time as you are paying more attention to it. The only real way to tell is if you have a BEFORE photo of the same are. If your doctor does bulk measurements on your hair, it would determine if there is a reduction of hair mass, usually caused by genetic balding.

Tags: hair growth, finasteride, propecia, hairline


I’ve read time and time again from your responses that finasteride does not work well on the frontal hairlines. Does that mean frontal hairline recession will occur regardless of using finasteride? or are you saying no regrowth would occur with finasteride?


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Take 100 people with a Norwood class 3 or 3A hairline and put them on finasteride 1mg daily. If they are under 25 years old, there is a small chance that some hair will grow in this area (I would guess less than 5%). The older the patient, the less likely that we will see significant hair growth.

There is a more important second scenario with those people in the Norwood class 3-5 pattern who are losing frontal hair. Again, in men under 25, there is a good chance (I would estimate at a better than 40% chance) that the hair loss will stop progressing or at least slow down the progression.

From the two observations, I think that the consumer has decisions to make. One of my sons with early frontal loss reversed it completely on the drug and started when he was 28 years old (he is now 40 and stable with regard to no hair loss). That says that all hope is not lost with the use of finasteride for treating frontal loss. It would take a full 2 years to know if it works. A bulk assessment in our office prior to starting the medication will have value for comparing before and after the 2 year treatment period.

Dr. Robert Bernstein has collected a large number of frontal hairline medication reversals, as have many other doctors, but cases like these are few and far between, despite this large collection.

Tags: propecia, finasteride, hairloss, hair loss, hairline


First I’ll like to say, I really enjoy your blog. I found your blog about a year ago and love it.

I have a question about hairlines. I have an asymmetrical hairline. I think its mature on the right and juvenile on the left. So could it be that my right side is juvenile and my left side is normal? I know you said they eventually even out, but are there any cases you know of where they DON’T even out?

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You can have both the appearance of a juvenile hairline and genetic male pattern balding occurring at the same time. Unless you have an examination and also followed over a course of a year, it is likely difficult to tell. Other factors, such as your age, family history, degree/pattern of miniaturization, and even bulk measurements can aid in a more objective diagnosis.

Unfortunately, I don’t know enough about your case to give you a decent idea of what is happening to your hairline. Having an asymmetrical hairline isn’t impossible, but I wouldn’t be surprised if in time you see the other side catch up.

Tags: hairline, hairloss, hair loss, juvenile hairline


Hi Docs, thanks for the great site, it really helped me figure out my options. I finally got a check on what I thought was a receding hairline after seeing my brothers lose their hair and after a couple of checks with a hair specialist in the UK I was told I have a matured hairline but no apparent signs of real balding, recession or minituarisation. I was told that there was no apparent need for me to use Propecia or Minoxidil. I am aged 32 now and my hairline looked to have matured by around 21 and hasn’t moved noticeably since then.

My question is that you tend to mention on this blog that a Norwood 2 is approximately a mature hairline and you don’t consider this male pattern balding from a surgical standpoint – but on your New Hair Institute site you show Norwood Class II patients and count that as hairloss that could be treated surgically? Would this be strictly for a cosmetic adjustment of the hairline? (I realise it’s all cosmetic surgery but as in there’s no balding to cover, just a hairline change). Although I’m happy with my hair more or less, I’d still prefer a slightly straighter (closer to juvenile) hairline as I have quite a high, thin forehead and I’d be interested in surgery simply as a cosmetic adjustment.

Thanks for any clarification.

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Norwood 2Hair loss is not a medical illness. Hair transplant surgery is considered cosmetic surgery. If you want to enhance your appearance, it is your choice. So for those with a Norwood class 2 or a mature hairline which is more like an early Class 3 pattern, we can certainly treat it.

The point I generally make in my medical practice and here on BaldingBlog is to have open communication between the patient and doctor. We give our opinions on what may be too low of a hairline and how it may not be age appropriate, but in the end each and every patient has a right to choose their own “look” and hairline.

There is nothing wrong with, as you put it, a cosmetic adjustment.

Tags: hairline, hair loss, hairloss, hair transplant, surgery



I am 19 years old and i send this message because i am very afraid that i am really fast balding. But i heard about a mature hairline, and it can be normal for man/boys around my age to get this kind of hairline. Can you please check out the pictures i send and also uploaded and posted in this message. Because i really want to know what you think… A mature hairline or just balding? If it is a mature hairline im reassured because i dont care if i go bald in 10/20 years but not just in my 20’s..

I hope you understood this message because my English is not that great. ( Im Dutch )

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Here are the photos (click to enlarge):


Your English is just fine, but your photos are unfortunately pretty bad for me to be able to evaluate (the lighting is poor and the images aren’t sharp). From what I can gather from the pictures, your hairline appears to be fine and it is touching the upper crease of your furrowed brow. This would suggest that you have retained your juvenile hairline (better pictures would be needed to confirm this). Mature hairlines do occur at 19 years old, but that would be unusual. There’s no way for me to tell if it’ll go beyond the mature hairline or just stop right there, though.

Tags: hairline, mature hairline, photos


I have a real fine dirty blonde straight hair texture. I am also Caucasian with pretty fair skin and I am 26 years old. The question I’d like to know is it normal I guess when lifting my hairline under bathroom fixture lightning to be able to see scalp in the corners? I’ve read a lot of blog questions and even have come across a few that are similar to the question that I have prepossessed but would like to get some clarification.

My corners of my hairline look to have matured to a norwood 2 possibly a norwood 1.5. In the corners I see normal sized hair but they seem to be slightly finer. The zone of finer hairs is like .5 cm of the leading edge and seems only to be in the corners. Is this considered a transition zone or would this be miniaturization or is it even common to even see finer hairs located in the corners of the hairline?

Also one more question if I may can you also just explain a little what a transition zone is and is this for hair transplant patients or is there also a transition in none balding men and women hairline as well?

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Good questions.

A transition zone is present in everyone… that is, unless there is recession associated with balding. Generally, the transition zone has from 0.5-1cm one-hair follicular units and behind this zone the appearance of two-haired follicular units start showing up. In the very front of the transition zone is a layer of vellus hairs. This layer of vellus hairs can be identified as they are short, often colorless, and they do not have the obvious scalp “hole” where the hair exits the skin. These vellus hairs are the first hairs to go when frontal balding occurs and it is these hairs that you are seeing in your hairline.

Everyone is different and those with finer hair have a different appearance than those with coarse hair. Seeing through the hairline is normal, up to a point. The normal hairline should not have many miniaturized hairs (can be seen under a microscopic vision of the scalp in the doctor’s office).

Tags: hairloss, hair loss, hairline, vellus hair


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