Sunday, 16 August 2015


Scalp micro-pigmentation, or scalp tattooing, is a semi-permanent micro-pigmenting technique that offers an alternative option for both men and women suffering from hair loss, who are not appropriate candidates for hair transplant surgery or who do not want it.

However, scalp micro-pigmentation is increasingly being used as a complementary treatment to hair restoration surgery, either to add  the illusion of additional density and enhance the overall result of the patient’s surgical procedure, or to camouflage existing scarring from older transplant surgeries where the patient has declined the option of a scar revision procedure.

One specific technique, Hair microPigmentation Treatment (HPT), involves the use of a digitally controlled needle that applies medical grade hypoallergenic colour pigment into the scalp. Unlike a traditional tattoo that would use ink, HPT is performed using specially designed pigments that will not have the colour change or migration that is commonly seen with a body art tattoo. The pigments used for HPT are of a pharmaceutical quality and fulfil the most demanding quality and security regulations, complying with category 1 of EU Cosmetics Directive and European Directive. The pigments are dermatologically and microbiologically tested and contain high  quality mineral pigments. Additionally, they are sterile, hypoallergenic and do not contain any kind of artificial preservatives, aromatic amines or heavy metals.

Although it may appear to be a similar technique to body art tattooing, tattoo inks are not subject to the same stringent testing and regulations as the pigments used in HPT. In addition tattoo needles and treatment depth into the skin are very different. Both techniques use needles to implant colour, but that is where the similarity ends. Traditional body art tattoos have the tendency to change colour. If it was black to start with, very often they will turn blue as a result of migration due to the type of ink used and the tissue level at which the tattoo was implanted. HPT is not implanted at a deep level on the scalp; the simulated hair follicles are implanted in the very top layers of the epidermis.

For general scalp micro-pigmentation treatments, we would expect HPT to last between one and three years. After this, the patient will require some minor maintenance or touch ups to ensure their treatment is kept looking its best. However, it is impossible to predict the exact length of time the treatment will last, as each patient’s biology is different and lifestyle choices and other variables can affect the longevity of the treatment. The pigments used for HPT are designed to fade over time. This makes it possible to adjust the tone and colour of the implanted ‘hair follicles’ and change the hairline, if applicable, to be more ‘age appropriate’ for patients as they
mature. HPT is a multi-treatment procedure that usually requires two to three sessions to complete. Depending on the size of the area to be treated and the extent of a patient’s hair loss or scarring, each session will take two to four hours. The treatment in itself is not painful, as the pigment is implanted only in the epidermis.

However, no longer than four-hour sessions are recommended as there is a residual build up of ‘irritation’ that can eventually make the patient’s scalp feel sore. We have used HPT effectively to help a number of patients camouflage their transplant scarring, which is either strip scarring, or hole punch or plug marks left after older hair transplant surgery techniques. For successful scar camouflage procedures it is important to understand how to assess the scar. The first step is to examine the scar and decide whether micro-pigmentation is suitable, or if another treatment such as excision or laser is more appropriate. It is of paramount importance to understand the different types of scars and how they have been created in order to decide the best HPT technique to treat them. Depending on the age or severity of the scar(s) we may need to improve the texture and flatten these scars with microneedling, mesotherapy or PRP prior to referring the patient to a micro-pigmentation specialist. HPT is only appropriate for the treatment of scars that are more than a year old and are fully healed. Hypertrophic scars present as raised scars within the border of the trauma or incision. Hypertrophic scarring will almost always need a medical treatment prior to HPT. Keloid scarring presents as raised scar tissue outside the border of the trauma site or incision and is a contraindication to HPT as there is a high risk of precipitating further scarring. The aim of re-pigmenting a scar is to blend in the damaged skin and reduce the contrast between the scar and the healthy scalp and surrounding hair. However, as highlighted previously, scars by their very nature are unpredictable to work on. Unlike healthy undamaged skin, the scar area may grab the pigment resulting in possible migration or occasionally it may reject the pigment and push the colour out.
Reference: Dr Sotirios Foutsizoglou (Aesthetics – Monthly Journal for Medical Aesthetic Professionals)

Visit us at for all your Scalp Micropigmentation needs, questions or concerns. Consultations and Scalp Evaluations are always FREE.

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Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP)– Now in Toronto, Ontario!

Scalp Esthetica is proud to announce that Scalp Micropigmentation has finally arrived in Toronto, Canada.

What is Scalp Micropigmentation?

Scalp Micropigmentation has been around since the 90s, however, has only finally gained recognition in the last few years.  Scalp Micropigmentation goes by many names, including: SMP, Medical Hairline Tattoo, Scalp Tattoo, Medical Hairline Restoration, and Hair Micropigmentation Treatment. 

Regardless of the name, the treatment is the same.  Scalp Micropigmentation consists of using a fine tattoo needle that is the same shape and size as a hair follicle to implant pigment into the scalp.  The scalp contains approximately 2000 hair follicles per square inch, and thus, the SMP Artist must tattoo thousands of microdots into the scalp, which gives the appearance of a freshly shaved head of hair, or a Buzzcut.  The results look very natural, and it is a much safer and better option that hair transplantation, hair plugs, toupee or wigs.  Leaving no scarring and healing within days, not months or years.

Why would I want Scalp Micropigmentation?

The effects of balding in both sexes, Male and Female, can have devastating effects on one’s self-esteem, self-confidence, sexuality and body image.  Many clients feel embarrassed about having thinning hair, bald spots or other forms of baldness and have sought out many “cures” for baldness, including: Hair growth serums, Hair Transplants, Hair growth shampoos and conditioners, Hair plugs, etc, only to be very disappointed with the results or lack thereof.

At Scalp Esthetica, we feel that you should embrace your baldness, but not have to live with it.  By having an SMP or Scalp Micropigmentation Treatment, you can easily have the look of a freshly shaved head or a buzzcut, rather than looking completely or partially bald.  The appearance of this look is Bold, confident and daring.  SMP has shown to increase one’s confidence and self-esteem and give them a new outlook on life.

What about Men and Women with Thinning Hair?

SMP or Scalp Micropigmentation works for both Men and Women of any age, skin type and skin color, and works at any stage of baldness.  Many Men and Women come into the office with thinning hair in the top or crown area of the scalp.  SMP works to create the appearance of density in the scalp by camouflaging the scalp with thousands of microdots.  This effect creates hair density and fullness, giving the appearance of a full head of hair.

What about Scalp Scars?

SMP can be used to cover scars on the scalp using the technique described above.  SMP is a great adjunct treatment to hair transplant scarring, and to help add density to an area that may have scarred on the scalp from the hair transplant treatment.  Whether you are bald, balding or have scars from medical treatments, SMP can help.

Does SMP treatment hurt?

The needles and technique used in SMP are not the same as having a body tattoo treatment using ink.  Tattoo artist use ink, rather than pigment, and they go much deeper into the dermis to implant ink, which of course, causes more pain.  Most clients describe having an SMP treatment as having multiple mosquito bites.  Scalp Esthetica uses medical grade numbing cream to numb the scalp as much as possible, to reduce pain and irritation from the treatment.

How much does a Scalp Micropigmentation Treatment Cost?

Prices for an SMP treatment vary depending on the amount of work that needs to be done based on the degree of baldness.  Prices can range from $750 to cover a client, male or female, with thinning hair to $5000 for a full head of hair restoration.  It is best to go into the office where you plan to have the treatment to meet with your SMP technician and to have a consultation.  Consultations are usually free, but are limited to time.  Go into the consultation prepared with some questions about the artist and about the treatment.  Based on the consultation, the SMP technician will be able to give you an accurate quote on the procedure, and should be able to answer any and all of your questions.

Where is Scalp Esthetica?

Scalp Esthetica is located at 1 Eglinton Ave East, Unit C400, Toronto, Ontario.  We are located on the South-East corner of Yonge and Eglinton, right in Midtown Toronto.  We are accessible by bus, subway or car.

Visit us at today!  Consultations are always FREE and you can even use our Boldness Simulator to see what you would look like after having a Scalp Micropigmentation Treatment at Scalp Esthetica.