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This patient had one Scalp MicroPigmentation (SMP) treatment on his hair transplant scar. The AFTER video was taken immediately after SMP, so you can see some redness on the scalp, which will go away in a day or two.

SMP scalp scar video


In general, SMP to a scalp scar takes two to three sessions. The patient above will come back in one week to make sure everything blends in. The redness you see in this patient is due to the fact that it was taken immediately after it was done and there was a little bleeding present. He will be able to shave his head or keep his hair long without worrying about the scar. For more information you can visit or email us at You can include a photo of yourself for a consultation. The most common questions asked about SMP can be found here.

Tags: smp, scalp micropigmentation, scarring, hair transplant, hairloss, hair loss


I found on the Internet reviews of SMP — What is your take on all these sites that offer SMP?

They claim they are “the worlds only unbiased source of guidance and information on the fastest growing hair loss solution in recent history, a solution known as scalp micropigmentation.

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Hair Transplant Network is supposed to be an unbiased review of doctors, but the doctors on the site all pay a monthly fee (over a thousand dollars) to be on the site. Yelp is supposed to be an unbiased review of most places, but even they have come into scrutiny when they favor (with positive reviews) those who pay them a monthly service fee.

I think that unless there are hundreds or thousands of independent reviews, a few polarized reviewers are always going to seem suspect. We maintain that you should visit us, as we hold free monthly open house events that provide access to our clients/patients so you can see the quality of what we do for yourself. Seeing is believing!

Tags: smp debate, scalp micropigmentation, hairloss, hair loss


Do you have any cases where SMP was used to treat traction alopecia ? Is it feasible ?

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Scalp MicroPigmentation (SMP) may work for treating traction alopecia, though it likely depends on the style you plan on having. It could look just fine if the hair is kept short. Hair transplantation is a good treatment for traction alopecia, providing that the cause of the traction is gone.

Tags: traction alopecia, hairloss, hair loss, pigment, smp, scalp micropigmentation


Hi Doc,
I have been following your blog closely & am really grateful to you for all your help. I had a FUE surgery done 2 years ago but now I wish I hadn’t. Basically I have a big bald spot & after reading the articles should have had strip. Now my problem is I dont like to have my hair long as its thin & doesn’t look good. Wearing them short as I do now exposes the donor & the recipient areas..By short I mean buzz. I dont shave my head.

What do you suggest i should do? Please help as I am losing my self confidence & getting depressed.

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When there are large follicular unit extraction (FUE) sessions done on a patient with low density hair, it will show thinning in the donor area and a leave the patient with a more see-through back of the head. We have treated many FUE patients with Scalp MicroPigmentation (SMP) in the donor area to add some contrast to the skin. It also works wonders on the recipient area, making the hair look fuller in both locations.

Take a look at the site SMP site and see the many patients who have been treated with this modality. Particularly, look at this patient below, which shows a before and after treatment for FUE scars. This patient and many more can be found in our SMP gallery.

SMP before/after for FUE scars

Tags: fue, follicular unit extraction, smp, scalp micropigmentation, scarring


We received some Scalp MicroPigmentation (SMP) questions:

1) The results pictures on the website all seem to show everyone with shaved heads. Should I expect the ability to cut my hair that short after the procedure and not have the scar visible? or are those atypical, “best case” scenarios? I know there will always be some irregularity but the pictures show it being very difficult to discern. This isn’t a make it/break it question. I’d be happy to cut my hair down to 1/8″ without the scar visible. I just want to make sure my expectations are in line with reality.

2) Must I shave my head for the procedure itself?

3) If I do have my head shaved and I expose the SMP’d scar to the sun, will it fade?

4) Is the SMP permanent? Permanent as in, I do this once (the 3 sessions) and it lasts for 50+ years? Or is there an expected life span for the SMP?

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1. The photos on the SMP website show most people shaved, because that is what makes the scar blend in with the stubble of hair and the flat pigment of SMP underneath your skin.

Keep in mind, if you get SMP for a scar, it is not hair and that there will be a “step” in the hair where there is a scar. SMP will only make the scalp darker so you wont notice the white line. If you keep your hair 1/8 inch long you may see the step of where the hair starts and ends. Most patients shave or buzz their hair around the scar with an electric shaver set at zero guard or they keep their hair long enough to cover the invisible scar. Everyone is different in their degree of how they hide the scar, but you must remember that you will always still have a scar. SMP only helps hide it to most casual observers. No matter how good we get your SMP, you will always notice the scar in certain lighting and certain angles… and you will notice it more because you know how to look for it.

2. You don’t have to shave, but if you are ever going to shave later it will help us blend it in better. We work with longer hair all the time (this is not an issue). It is when we finish the job with long hair and later you decide to shave it, you will notice some areas that don’t look perfectly blended in. So if you are ever going to shave it, we recommend you have SMP done with the area shaved, because that is how we get it almost perfect. If you are never going to shave, then it is not an issue.

3. SMP will fade with or without sun. UV light makes it fade a bit more, but it won’t erase. If you ever need a touch-up in the future because you think it has faded too much, the fee is $300.

4. SMP is permanent just like a tattoo is permanent, though you may want a touch-up in the years to come. In our experience over the last 4+ years, most people do not return for touch-ups. When we follow up with our SMP clients, we find that most say it has not faded to a degree to warrant a touch-up.

We’ve answered many more SMP questions on our FAQ.

Tags: scalp micropigmentation, smp, pigment, hairloss, hair loss, scarring


I know you have a site, but I saw other companies and websites on the Internet using SMP with a trademark sign or a registered sign. Did you invent SMP or are you using SMP without permission?

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The technique of micropigmenting the scalp has been around for many years, but it has not been widely referred to as “Scalp MicroPigmentation” until a few years ago (since 2010). When we first entered the pigmentation market back in 2010, we tried to come up with various names for the process, such as scalp tattooing and scalp micro tattoo. Dr. Pak came up with the term “Scalp MicroPigmentation” in early 2011, which we abbreviated to SMP. We figured it was a good, catchy term and built our marketing based on this new naming.

We even hired a lawyer to file a U.S. Trademark with the Patent office, but the SMP trademark was rejected on the basis that it was a common descriptive term that was abbreviated. We do own the domain, but anyone can use the SMP terminology. Legally, you cannot place a trademark or registered sign after it. I realize other companies shamelessly do this, but that is false advertising and representation. It’s akin to putting a ™ or ® after the words “computer” or “automobile”. Anyone can use the the abbreviation “SMP” and it is not a brand.

In the end, we are happy that the terminology of “SMP” and “Scalp MicroPigmentation” caught on. If anything, it gives us passive exposure for the small investment we made on purchasing the domain name.

Tags: smp, scalp micropigment, scalp micro pigmentation, trademark


Hi Doc

Love your website please keep up the good work it is very much appreciated. I have been reading your website extensively and understand the difficulties with transplanting body hair ie arms, legs, chest on to the scalp different rate of growth etc. However would it be possible in the following scenario:

I usually have my hair shaved ie blade 0 or 1, thankfully I have one of those heads that look better shaved rather then with hair! I am 33 years old with black hair Norwood class 4 I am loosing may hair slowly but its not apparent yet.

Now with the combination of SMP to give it that shadow look and transplanted hair from chest, arms to give it ‘texture’ as the hair will always be blade 1. In this scenario would it be possible to use body hair combined with SMP?

Thanks Doc

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We have been using FUE grafts for added texture on a person like you who gets Scalp MicroPigmentation (SMP). However, we use scalp hair… not body hair. Body hair transplant success rates are variable and the texture is not the same. If you are going for the “stubble” look, scalp hair will give you a better texture.

That said, we’ve found that after having the SMP done to the full head, most people usually realize that having a hair transplant to get the “stubble” texture is not an issue (as they once thought).

Tags: smp, pigment, hair transplant, hairloss, hair loss


Dr. Rassman / Dr. Pak,
If, after consulting with you and establishing a masterplan, a patient were to undergo SMP with the intention of having a hair transplant in the near future, are there aspects of the procedure that require particular consideration?

For example:-
(a) Would the SMP hairline have to be positioned slightly further back than the original hairline to allow for the creation of a transition zone during an HT?
(b) Are the SMP dots used as a template for an HT?
(c) Would the integrity and visual effect of SMP ink be damaged or compromised by HT-surgery incisions?
(d) Do you advocate using a darker pigment to provide better camouflage to the scalp, or do you always match the ink to the patient’s existing hair colour, even if it’s greying/white?

Or is it advisable to have SMP after a hair transplant? Thank you.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

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Each and every patient is different and there is no rule. You can have Scalp MicroPigmentation (SMP) first and a hair transplant later. Or you can have the transplant first and SMP later. I have had patients who had SMP on a completely bald scalp and later had a small FUE surgery to add texture to the hairline.

The hairline for SMP and a hair transplant is placed in the same proportionate height according to what the patient and doctor agrees on. If a patient ever considers having a full HT later on in life they should let the doctor know of this possibility so the SMP hairline can be placed slightly back to make room for some transition zone… but in my experience (in practice) this rarely happens, because most bald patients who are undergoing SMP will never consider a full HT since it will never give them complete full hair coverage. Most bald SMP patients would rather have a good hairline and later consider an FUE option for added texture (not fullness).

I do not advocate darker ink for better camouflage. I advocate a specific shade of ink that matches the complexion of skin and hair combination. If the patient’s hair turns grey later on in life, the SMP shade will make the roots look dark. If you apply SMP all over the scalp it would not matter if the hair turns grey, because there is a base SMP color. Many patients with grey hair have SMP and it actually makes their hair look less grey and they look a little younger. If there is ever a drastic mismatch where your hair turns completely white (not grey) like Santa Claus, then I suppose one must consider dying their hair. Completely white hair will not work with SMP unless you shave the white hair.

Tags: smp, pigment, scalp micropigmentation, hairloss, hair loss, hair transplant


Snippet from the article:

In a town obsessed with staying (or at least looking) young to remain on top, more than a few men agonize over going bald. Superficial though it might be, many derive confidence and a perception of power from a full head of hair.

Which is why anyone who’s anyone in the follically challenged Tinseltown set has come to rely on a few good doctors. Armed with the latest technology, these gurus — having moved far beyond yesterday’s telltale hair plugs — know how to help a man sprout hair or at least give the appearance of doing so, using several techniques from shots to transplants to tattoos.

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Read the rest — Leg Hair Transplants and Scalp Tattoos: How Hollywood’s A-List Fights Baldness

Dr. Pak is quoted about SMP in the article — “There are a lot of actors who have had bad hair-transplant scars or are covering a bald spot, and this frees them from using makeup,” says Jae Pak of the New Hair Institute on L.A.’s Miracle Mile.

Tags: smp, hair loss, hairloss, hollywood reporter


Hi Dr. Rassman!

I am thinking about getting SMP for the entire scalp. I have had several hair transplant procedures so there is a considerable amount of scarring. I want to shave my head close to the scalp and have been told that I should still be able to do this. I am confused about whether I should use clippers (Oster 76 – 00000 Blade) or a face shaver (Remington 91/Remington 6150). Which would be better for me to use after the SMP procedure?

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They all work, you just have to use what is most comfortable and convenient for you. I have no preference.

Tags: scalp micropigmentation, smp, shaving, head shaving


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