Top 10 Celebrity Hair Transplants
Since the dawn of man, there has been one malady that men fear more than death itself and that’s the fear of losing one’s hair. Even with the seemingly constant improvements in medical technology, there still isn’t really a silver bullet when it comes to staving off of baldness for every man (as medications like Rogaine only actually work on one specific type of balding). Luckily for those that can afford it, there are surgical options that help people move hair from one part of their head to another and while that can be hit or miss too (i.e. the recent viral video of President Trump’s hair losing a battle to wind), if it’s done well and early, you may not even realize that the person you’re looking at had gone under the knife. So, with that in mind, let’s take a look like the top 10 celebrities who had hair transplant surgery (keeping in mind that it’s hard to confirm these sort of things so we’ll be taking the word of some doctors in that field).
10. John Travolta
Besides Elton John (see #7 on this list) there’s perhaps no celebrity that’s better known for hair transplant surgery than John Travolta. Travolta, who was a teenage heartthrob back in the 70’s, used to rock a pretty amazing head of hair that he clearly misses as for the longest time he was clearly rocking a pretty blatant toupee to the different Hollywood functions that he’d attend. Outside of that, though, his personal pictures showed him with a pretty limited head of hair which was strange considering the fact that he was/is rich enough to own literal 747 airplanes, so you have to wonder why he wouldn’t splurge on hair transplant surgery. Whatever the reason was, he apparently ended up getting a full hair transplant around 2016 and considering how great it looks perhaps Travolta was waiting for the technology to reach the standards he expected when it came to his hair. There are now photos of Travolta’s hairline show that his hair looks both thick and natural, with layers of hair at the front that look like the real hairline of someone and not like the dreaded doll-hair look that some other people on this list are dealing with (namely Billy Bob Thornton). That has to feel great for Travolta, whose hair was the envy of men around the world for so long and it also goes to show you just how far hair transplant technology has come in recent years. Stayin’ Alive, indeed.
9. Mel Gibson
Considering the 21st Century that Mel Gibson has had thus far, you’d think that hair loss would be the least of his concerns and could even elicit him some sympathy. But, like many men, Gibson was basically just losing his hair as he got older and his testosterone waned, as he actually has had a pretty great head of hair for most of his life in front of and behind the camera (both films and police). Despite the work he’s had done, he still has numerous recent pictures that show a relatively large bald patch at the back of his head, which goes to show you that hair transplants aren’t always simply a one time thing but something that you need to get done multiple times as you get older if you really want to stay on top of things. For people like Gibson, who was thinning at the front of his hairline, replacing that hair seemingly worked but that didn’t stop the rest of his head/crown from continuing to lose its luster/thickness, and because of that Gibson’s hair actually looks sort of weird when not perfectly combed, as it’s obvious that he’s had work done due to the unnatural way his hair is thinning. Now that he’s been in a major movie for the first time in years thanks to “Daddy’s Home 2”, perhaps he can afford the second part of his surgery.
8. Jeremy Piven
Jason Alexander is near the top of this list as one of the most famous bald men in the history of television and ironically, Jeremy Piven, who is one of the least liked actors in television history, actually starred in a few episodes of Seinfeld back in the mid-90’s as the actor portraying George on the sitcom Jerry and George were putting together for NBC. Those episodes are often what people point to when they describe the extent of Piven’s hair loss, as since his big breaks in the aughts (Old School, Entourage) he’s looked like a guy with hair. While there are countless pictures that show Piven’s before and after look, there’s actually a few that actually let us know exactly what procedure type he had to correct his thinning hair. Thanks to the fact that Piven was once famous enough to be followed around by paparazzi, especially at the beach, there are images out there that show a large scar at the back of Piven’s head when his hair is wet. That scar is typically a tell-tale sign of the “Strip Style” hair transplant method, which is the less expensive, precise and recent version of hair transplant surgery in which stripes of the scalp are moved from the back of the head to the front. That makes sense as Piven would be coming up on almost the 20th anniversary of his procedure, with the scar showing the rest of us just how far hair transplant technology has come in recent years.
7. Elton John
If there was a poster boy for hair transplant surgery it’d be Elton John, who was famously heavily bald during his heyday in the 70’s and 80’s. Famously decadent, there’s no doubting that John spent a pretty penny on his hair transplant, something he’s never openly discussed himself. It is pretty obvious, however, and some of his “friends” have joked about his “sewn on” hair in interviews, namely fellow rocker Rod Stewart who openly bragged about his “natural” hair in an interview a few years ago while alluding to John’s “sewn on” hair. Beyond that, hair restoration forums have attempted to figure out exactly what procedure John had, as he is probably the most famous recipient of a procedure, and they’ve narrowed it down to either a Follicular Unit Transplantation (also known as the “Strip Method”) or the Follicular Unit Extraction. The different being the amount transplanted at a time (in strips or as individual follicles). Considering the “Sewn on” comment(s) by Stewart, and some photographic evidence, it’s actually thought that John has a combination of some sort of transplant and a toupee or two, as his hair loss was “too severe” to correct with only one method. Either way, hair replacement is really all about how it makes the person who is going through the procedure or wearing the toupee feel and it’s pretty clear that it makes John feel better and more youthful, which as a new father to small children, is something he’ll need in spades over the next decade or so.
6. Billy Bob Thornton
Billy Bob Thornton is a ladies man, there’s no denying that, as he wed one of the most gorgeous women in the history of Hollywood while she was in her 20’s and he was already a heavily balding older man. Despite that, Jolie was so obsessed with Thornton that she got his name tattooed on her arm and even carried a small vial of his blood around her neck, sure that sound creepy, but perhaps she was holding onto it just in case his hair transplant was rejected and he needed emergency surgery. Either way, Thornton was losing his hair in the 90’s and ended up getting hair plugs even if he clearly didn’t need them to attract women. He appeared to get the surgery a few years too early, as well, in terms of the technology behind the procedures as his hair does look a lot more like plugs than an actual hair transplant and considering he hasn’t discussed it, we can’t really know for sure. Either way, his final product is labeled as one of the worst celebrity jobs out there in terms of “coverage” and “density”, two terms that are heavily used in the hair transplant community and are clearly super important to every man in the world. Regardless, he still looks a lot better than he did before the procedure(s), even if he still has a bald spot at the back of his head that he needs to keep the rest of his hair long to cover (think that picture of President Trump attempting to board Air Force One). Before hair transplant surgeries were at the level they were today some people would actually get scalp reduction surgeries, which is what Trump reportedly had and what Thornton could’ve had as well, which basically just removes the “dead-zone” from one’s head and allows for the other parts of the scalp to grow in with one’s natural hair. Those procedures were super painful and also could end up giving people gigantic bald spots, which may be the case with Thornton, as well.
5. Jude Law
Jude Law may be the least surprising entry on this list as even back in his “prime” he had a pretty questionable hairline (think Bill Murray in the 80’s mixed with some Phil Collins). While he actually did have a pretty strong hairline back in the mid-90’s, really all you need to know about Jude Law’s hairline is that an article on a plastic surgery website starts an article about him by saying “Jude Law is an actor who is relatively well known for his receding hairline” (“This Summer, two-time Oscar Nominee and male pattern baldness sufferer Jude Law is… Going Bald”). However, in recent years it appears that Law’s hairline has stalled just like his career has, which has people thinking that he underwent the knife to either salvage what he had left or replace his faulty follicles with the ones that haven’t and will never betray him. While there’s no confirmation as to what Law actually did to accomplish that, outside of an amazing toupee the answer has to be hair transplant surgery as even the best medications really only work for people suffering from male pattern baldness on the crown of the head, not the front to back balding that Law was known for. What’s amazing is that he’s been able to keep the hairstyles that he had back in the 90’s, which isn’t always the case as the hair from the back of one’s head doesn’t have the same “personality” as the hair that people like Law had at the front of his head (especially considering the tricks he used to hide that fact). If you’re looking for a hair transplant and have the money, I’d definitely attempt to seek out the surgeon who performed Law’s procedure as it’s seamless and natural looking while also being significantly different enough to land him on lists like this.
4. Gordon Ramsay
Say it ain’t so, Ramsay!
You can pretty much type in any male celebrities name and the words “Hair transplant” on Google and find an article from a plastic surgeon breaking down the “work” they’ve had. World famous chef Gordon Ramsay is a bit different as there are articles from newspapers and gossip rags that talk about his hair transplant, which he neither confirmed nor denied. He was spotted leaving a plastic surgeon in Los Angeles wearing a black stocking hat, which prompted people to believe that he had worked on thickening the front of his scalp, despite the fact that he has never appeared to have been losing his hair. On top of that, photos from the set of Hell’s Kitchen from the first day back from his 12-hour procedure basically show that he looks the same as he did before the procedure as well. That may be exactly what he was looking for, though, as his procedure was defined as a pre-emptive strike against the natural thinning all men have when their testosterone levels drop in their 40’s. Considering the fact that Ramsay was 44 when he had his procedure, it appears that he was just attempting to keep what he had, which is understandable considering that he hosts about as many television shows as hairs on his head.
3. Sylvester Stallone
Sly Stallone clearly has a lot of testosterone flowing through his veins and there is a certain kind of testosterone (DHT) that is tied to baldness in men, which is why a lot of the men who are bald are also hairy everywhere else. Stallone, like some others on this list, never appeared to be going bald in the first place which means that he was keeping an eye on his hairline and once he noticed that he was going a bit thin, he decided to basically really go for it and not only get a hair transplant but also improve his hairline in the process. When you undergo the knife, especially before other people notice that you’re losing your hair, you want to make sure that you end up looking the same or as natural as you did before. So, when comparing photos from Stallone in the 80’s against photos today, where he’s in his 70’s, you’ll notice that his hairline is actually a lot lower than it was in his youth. While he pulls it off, as he still looks pretty young for his age, no one gets MORE hair as they age and because of that it’s fairly obvious that Stallone got some work done upstairs.
2. Jason Alexander
There may be no larger poster child for baldness than Jason Alexander. Alexander played the most famous bald person on screen, ever, in George Costanza from television’s greatest product ever; Seinfeld. Alexander went more and more bald during that show’s nearly 10-year run and his insecurities about his hair were often used as plot-points on the show. Outside of his role as George, though, Alexander typically wore a hairpiece in films or other television shows because Hollywood is still the industry of beautiful people, which is why there aren’t that many actual bald movie stars out there. In recent years, though, it looks like Alexander has decided that he no longer wants to show up to the set before everyone else to get his hair put on and instead had hair transplant surgery. While a lot of the photos look like he’s not really done with the procedure he is actually one of the examples of a person looking worse with hair. But that could just be because he is so strongly associated with George that any changes just look off… GEORGE IS GETTING UPSET!
1. Matthew McConaughey
It may come as a surprise that Matthew McConaghey, the voice of Lincoln (and general, high functioning insanity), went under the knife as there was never really a period in his life where he looked like he was going to go bald. That’s why addressing a problem area early is so important, as surgeons can essentially estimate just how bald a person is going to go and replace that area with hair from the back of the scalp. By doing so, you’d essentially skip ahead the years it’d take to go completely bald and in the process you’d also be really making people believe that you never had a problem with hair loss. So, while he does have beautiful golden locks these days, the fact is that McConaughey was beginning to lose his hair in the early 00’s (if you look at any images from that period), around the time that he was basically starring in romantic comedy after romantic comedy. There are countless websites (typically sites that are selling hair loss solutions) that cover the “McConaghair” and most point to how “naturally bald” he looked in the 2016 film ‘Gold’. That lead people to ask if he had hair plugs that were removed for filming, or if that was even possible. Turns out it isn’t, but if you look at his mug shot from 1999 (after he was arrested for playing the bongos, naked, in his home) and compare it to photos from even a few years later, you’ll see that he definitely did something to his hair and whatever he did worked. Hopefully he bought his surgeon a Lincoln.