Hair Plugs Vs. Hair Transplant

Hair plugs and hair transplants are two popular methods for restoring hair loss. Both procedures have advantages and disadvantages. Very important to consult with specialists like us to determine which method is right for you. Consider HPI Hair Partners for any and all hair replacement questions and inquiries.

The first recorded use of hair plugs dates back to the early 1800s when they were used to treat baldness in men. In the early 1900s, physicians began using hair plugs to treat female pattern baldness.

The procedure became popular in the United States in the 1950s and 1960s when Hollywood celebrities such as Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. underwent treatment for their thinning hair. 

Hair plug transplants fell out of favour in the 1970s and 1980s due to their high rate of complications and poor cosmetic results. 

In recent years, however, advances in surgical techniques have made hair plug transplants safer and more effective than ever before. This procedure is once again becoming popular as a treatment for male and female pattern baldness.

Hair plugs are small pieces of hair-bearing tissue surgically implanted into the scalp. This procedure can be performed on people with thinning hair or baldness. Hair plugs can provide a natural-looking hairline, and they are usually permanent. However, this procedure can be expensive and may require multiple sessions to achieve desired results. 

Additionally, there is a risk of infection and scarring associated with hair plug surgery.


  • Hair plugs can provide a natural-looking hairline 
  • They are relatively permanent. 


  • This procedure can be expensive, and it may require multiple sessions to achieve desired results 
  • There is a risk of complications like infection or scarring if done wrong

Hair Transplant

Hair transplants involve taking healthy hairs from one area of the head and transplanting them into the balding or thinning areas. The procedure is often used for people who have lost all or most of their hair due to illness, injury or age. Hair transplants can provide natural-looking results but are typically more expensive than hair plugs. There is some risk involved with hair transplantation if not done correctly.

Transplants offer a more natural-looking option as they involve taking individual hairs from the donor site and transplanting them into tiny incisions made in the balding area. This allows each transplanted hair to grow naturally. While this option tends to be more expensive than plugs, it offers a much higher success rate and results that last longer. 


  • Can provide natural-looking results 
  • Mostly permanent solution 


  • More expensive than hair plugs 
  • Risk of infection and scarring if done wrong 

The first hair transplant was performed in 1952 when doctor Norman Orentreich transplanted skin containing hair follicles to balding areas of the head. 

The procedure became known as “plug grafting.” In the 1980s, surgeon Michael Brownstein developed a technique called micro grafting, which involved transplanting tiny plugs of skin containing one to three hairs. This resulted in a much more natural-looking outcome than plug grafting. Today, there are two main types of hair transplantation: follicular unit transplantation (FUT) and follicular unit extraction (FUE). 

FUT is the most common type of hair transplantation among men. But it involves removing a strip of skin from the back or sides of the head and then dissecting it into small grafts containing one to four hairs each. These grafts are then transplanted to the balding area(s) of the head.”

The main advantage of FUT over other types of hair transplantation is that it allows for a large number of grafts to be transplanted at one time, which can help achieve desired results more quickly. Additionally, because FUT leaves a linear scar in the donor area, it may be less ideal for those who want to wear their hair very short. 

FUE is a newer method that involves individually extracting individual hairs from the donor area and then transplanting them into the balding area(s). This method results in less scarring than FUT and can be used to treat larger areas with fewer sessions.

 What is the difference between FUT and mini-FUT? 

Mini-FUT involves harvesting a smaller strip of tissue from the donor area, which results in a smaller scar. 

Contact our recommended provider HPI Hair Partners in Nashville, TN if you have any questions about receding hair.