The ultimate bad-hair day has to be a no-hair day! Worried about losing hair? There are ways to beat it or at least feel better about it. But what is the cause and how can men beat it? 

Although hair loss does increase as men get older (by the age of 50, around 85% of men will experience thinning of hair), it’s not uncommon in younger men. In about 25% of men who have hereditary male-pattern baldness, hair loss starts at the crown of the head or the temples before they turn 21. By the age of 35, about 66% of men will have noticed some hair loss.

Hereditary male-pattern baldness is the most common cause. Men can inherit baldness genes from their fathers or mothers. This means that the hormones that regulate

hair growth stop working properly, so the hair follicles shrink and don’t produce new hairs to replace the ones that fall out. Other possible causes of temporary hair loss are stress, a sudden shock, medications or treatments such as chemotherapy.

“Some women actually find balding men attractive. Like greying sideburns, baldness can lend a man a distinguished air!”

Modern society places a lot of emphasis on appearance, so young men who start balding might feel less attractive or insecure until they realise there are many men in the same situation. But listen up guys – some women actually find balding men attractive. Like greying sideburns, baldness can lend a man a distinguished air! Besides, many men choose to shave their heads today for a sleek, modern look. No hair also means saving on hair products so it can be a win-win. But if your hair loss is causing you stress or anxiety, you might need counselling to help you put it in perspective.

A newly emerging way to deal with permanent hair loss is man weaves. Faith Mtabati of An’Bia’Li Salon in Cape Town says that men are ‘still a bit shy’ about following this route. She explains the different options:

For a receding hairline: ‘It depends on the length of hair that’s left. If it’s long enough to plait, then we can plait and sew the netting and weave into your own hair.’ This is secure enough to allow swimming.

For completely bald heads: ‘If there’s no hair at all, we use a lace frontal which is glued onto the scalp.’ This is the most expensive option, that should be treated with care and not exposed too much to water. Faith does a thorough scalp assessment before installing a weave. ‘The skin needs to be healthy before and during any installation,’ she says. ‘One would follow an assessment for a reinstall after every four weeks, so the scalp is kept healthy and treated to minimise any skin disorders. With the netting option, as your own hair still grows out the weave becomes looser and therefore needs a reinstall to keep it secured.’ Lace front weaves are not a cheap-fix hair loss solution, but they do provide a more natural look than toupees and wigs.

  • Baldness isn’t caused by the sun or wearing a hat – unless it’s a dirty hat (scalp infections can cause hair to fall out temporarily).
  • Shampoos and gels don’t cause baldness, but harsh products like dyes can damage hair that is already thinning.
  • Cutting it short won’t make hair grow, but it might make it feel thicker.
  • Although bald men might like to think they’re more virile, there’s no scientific evidence that they have higher levels of testosterone (even though some women can’t resist a balding man!).

Remember to apply sunscreen to your bald spots to avoid sunburn. Ask your pharmacist for advice on the many hair-growth products on the market (ingredients range from caffeine to ginger). Minoxidil is a widely used over-the-counter cream, but does have side-effects so consult your doctor before taking it.

For free advice or support on hair health, Jet Club members can call


SA & Namibia
0800 00 45 45

Botswana, Lesotho & Swaziland
+2711 991 8258


HAIR TODAY, GONE TOMORROW HAIR TODAY, GONE TOMORROW Reviewed by Michelle Pienaar on January 22, 2021 Rating: 5
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