What Will My SMP Look Like in 5 Years?

by | Jul 1, 2023

Regarded as the one of the most effective solutions for hair loss and thinning, Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP) stands alone in being able to guarantee notable results. It involves the injection of pigments into the skin, creating tiny dots that emulate emerging hair follicles. This treatment typically lasts several years until the body starts breaking down these pigments. SMP often endures for many years, with most clients noting visible effects even five years after treatment. However, it’s crucial to note that SMP naturally fades over time. The aesthetic appeal of the faded SMP depends on various factors.

This article discusses the longevity of SMP treatment, factors affecting its fading, and the recommended time for touch-ups.

The duration of SMP effects varies between individuals. Although substantial fading usually occurs three to six years post-treatment, it can lighten faster in some cases and last longer than six years in others. Though SMP procedure resembles tattooing, the results aren’t permanent. A special pigment is deposited on the scalp’s skin, which slowly fades over time and can be replenished periodically. SMP fading primarily involves two processes: skin exfoliation and pigment absorption.  Even though SMP pigments are safe, the body’s immune system perceives them as foreign materials. It then begins to attack the pigment molecules, gradually breaking them down and eliminating them through natural bodily processes. Some pigments break down faster than others, while some remain longer but fade over time and become less visible.

The constant renewal of skin also contributes to SMP fading. As the surface layers of the skin are replaced, some pigmented cells are shed off.

What does SMP look like after five years?
At the five-year mark, SMP typically fades enough that you might consider refreshing the treatment. If performed by a skilled practitioner using high-quality pigments and techniques, the results can still look satisfactory. However, the degree of SMP fading cannot be precisely predicted as it depends on numerous factors and varies from person to person.

Factors affecting the rate of SMP fading include:
The strength of the individual’s immune system and body chemistry – Some systems break down pigments more vigorously, resulting in quicker SMP fading. This is often the primary factor.
State and type of scalp skin – Normal skin retains pigment most effectively. Oily skin can push out a significant amount of pigment due to sebum, and dry, flaky skin can result in more pigment shedding.
Sunlight exposure – UV rays can speed up pigment fading. The scalp is often the most exposed to sunlight, resulting in more significant fading. Using a hat or SPF protection can help prevent this.
Routine care – Harsh scalp care products can hasten pigment fading, as can prolonged wetness of the scalp.

Can anything go wrong with SMP after five years?
Certainly, if the techniques and materials used are subpar, the outcome may be less than ideal. However, when properly conducted, SMP can effectively last for at least five years.

If your SMP is more than five years old and has faded, a refresh might be warranted. For a professional and long-lasting SMP, consider us at Headways Scalp-Micropigmentation located in Edmonton, where we specialize in creating an effective solution to hair loss and an alternative to the “Bald Look”!



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