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If you have decided to get a hair transplant, there’s every chance that your hair is not just thinning but greying as well.
You might thus wonder if you could hit two birds with one stone with your hair transplant, and restore your natural hair colour as well as your hair.
The short answer is yes – when done properly, a hair transplant can sometimes turn back the clock on greying hairs and breathe new life into your naturally coloured hair.
How Transplanted Hairs Can Turn Grey Heads of Hair Colorful
First, it’s worth noting how hair turns grey in the first place.
We all know that grey hair comes with age but some have the misconception that grey hair also stems from follicles also being unhealthy and that’s simply not the case.
Instead, grey hair results from pigmentation from melanin in your hair follicles, which are themselves produced by cells called melanocytes.
Grey hair, the same as your hair colour, is typically genetically determined (though factors such as stress can accelerate it).
On the one hand, this means that transplanted hair will not magically turn existing grey hair back into your pre-grey hair color.
You can’t just pluck out some hairs, pop them into the top of your scalp, and expect them to turn the rest of your hair coloured.
That hair is continuing to grow in via their own follicles and roots. There’s nothing that transplanted hair can do about that.
What’s more, your transplanted hairs should come from other parts of your body, which naturally begs the question of whether these hairs have already turned grey themselves.
If so, it isn’t as though they’re going to magically turn back to their original color the second that they’re grafted into your head.
That said, if they’re still their original color and are transplanted into your head via a graft, they may be able to retain that color for a while.
How long that is will depend on the doctor and size of the graft so you’ll want to check with your surgeons to see what they can do for you.
In terms of getting rid of grey hairs via a hair transplant, the answer is more complicated.
If the hair that you are grafting onto your scalp is and has been removed from an area on your body where your hair is colored, your new hair should also be colored.
That said, how long and the extent to which that lasts will vary on a case-by-case basis so check with your doctor.
Can Transplanted Hairs Turn Grey?
After all that trouble, you might well wonder if transplanted hairs, even those that are colored when transplanted, can turn grey as they sit and settle and age: the answer is yes.
If it is assumed that they stay in as they should, transplanted hairs should turn grey the same way as your natural hair, though they do not accelerate the greying process
Transplantation and Older Patients
What about as you age along with your scalp?
While it’s understandable that you might worry about your scalp and overall health with age, the fact is hair transplantation is not more dangerous among older patients.
Even if you are over 80 years of age, you can get a hair transplant safely.
That being said, you should still discuss the process with your surgeon, especially if your hair has already begun to grey.
One of the biggest mistakes that people make when it comes to hair transplants is thinking that they can reset the clock back to their early 20s no matter how old they are.
That’s simply not the case.
Instead, you need to talk to your surgeon to know what you can reasonably expect and how you can best achieve your desired appearance.
Maybe that means recovering your hair’s original natural and full colour.
In greater likelihood, if you’re in an advanced state of greying, it can mean thicker hair with some coloration to give a more distinguished “salt and pepper” look.
Finally, if done by a proper surgeon, your transplanted hair should be sturdy enough to be able to withstand a dyeing process, which can color it that way, albeit artificially.
By knowing the ins and outs of hair transplants and grey and colored hair, you can breathe new life and color into your new look.
Pharmacist with special interest in hair loss and hair transplantation.
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