Shave Head Before Hair Transplant

planning a FUE procedure in way to improve my hairline. Do you alsways have to shave your head before undergoing it? i hope you say no!

Doctor Answers 17

Shave before FUE hair transplant

It is necessary to shave the donor zone (Back of the scalp) before an FUE hair transplant procedure.  However, the rest of the head typically does not need to be shaved especially in the hairline area.  Occasionally I will recommend it to patients with longer hair as sometimes creating recipient sites and placing the grafts is more difficult in patients with longer hair.  However in the hairline I find it not necessary in the majority of cases to shave.

Irvine Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Shaving of the scalp

Whenever possible, unless a patient feels comfortable with a shaved head, we will allow the hair to remain long.  With FUE, it is possible to remove the follicular units from narrow strips of shaved scalp, allowing us typically to obtain as many as 600 grafts.  Of course the recipient areas are not shaved not only for easier post op healing but also that these existing longer hairs allow for the appreciation of the angle and direction of hair growth.

Jeffrey Epstein, MD, FACS
Miami Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Hair Transplant and Head Shave

The donor site where we take the grafts that are used will have to be shaved.  However, where the grafts are implanted does not have to be shaved.  If your hair is long enough in the back, there is an option to try to camouflage your donor site.  We have had many patients that are not able to tell their hair was even shaved.  It can be very discrete with the right length of hair.

Jeffrey W. Hall, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Does one have to shave the head for an FUE

That depends upon how many grafts. There are ways to work around a large shaved area to include:

1) long haired FUE which we limit to 400 grafts
2) keeping the hair long to cover the shaved areas
3) shave the scalp in stripes like a step ladder with hair between each rung on the ladder. This can be see easily on the web reference below and we can do up to 800 graft that way when puhsed by the patient

William Rassman, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Yes and No

In general you need to shave the donor area.  If it is a small number of grafts (under 1000) and you have long hair you can shave a portion of hair and hide the shaved areas. 

Jae Pak, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews


The short answer is that one typically shaves down the donor (back) area of the scalp prior to an FUE procedure.  That said, smaller FUE procedures (500-750 grafts) require a small linear area to be shaved and provide for better camouflage.

In our practice, we utilize platelet rich plasma (PRP) n virtually every transplant case which, in our experience, promotes significantly faster healing in the donor and recipient areas.

Best of luck!

Jeffrey B. Wise, MD, FACS
Wayne Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 80 reviews

Shaving for FUE Hair Transplantation

For a standart FUE surgery it's almost a must to shave the donor site (back of the scalp) but for the recipient site it's possible not to shave the hair. On the other hand as it will look odd mostly the patients prefer to have a total scalp shaving.
Rarely if the amount of graft that I need is less than 2000 and the patient hair is longer than 5 cm it is possible to perform the fue extraction with small sized shaving and let the patient have the comfort of faster social downtime.

Ilker Apaydin, MD
Turkey Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Shave your hair before a procedure

The necessity of shaving the back of your scalp will depend upon how many FUE grafts are harvested and your doctor and you will make that judgment.  

John E. Frank, MD
New York Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Does the Head Need to be Shaved for an FUE Hair Transplant?

FUE technically necessitates shaven follicles to be extracted using a punch.
For high graft numbers, total shaving of the donor area is mandatory.
For small graft numbers like 1000-1400, a limited shaven technique could be used. This is either shaving the lower part of the donor area in case the patients hair is long enough to cover it, or areas of strips shaven so that the hairs above each strip is enough to camouflage them. However this method is not advised, due to causing different densities at various parts of the donor area that may cause cosmetic problems later.

The recipient area may not be shaved during an FUE hair transplant, although the transplanted density will inevitably drop due to limited visibility of empty areas. Another drawback of not shaving the recipient area is prolonging operative time. Since graft extractions may take many hours, it is usually not a good idea to prolong the duration even more at the recipient site incisions phase and the placement phase, which would keep the grafts out of the body for too long.

Ali Emre Karadeniz, MD
Turkey Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Shaving before FUE Hair Transpalnt

The answer is No.

We don't always shave.  Hair transplant could be done without any shaving, minimal shaving or strip shaving that could be hidden by longer neighboring hair.  However, if you need a large number of grafts (over 2000) the surgeon needs to have access to a large area of scalp and more extensive shaving might become necessary.  I recommend to my patients to keep their hair as long as they are comfortable with and in many cases we can keep the shaved area minimally visible after the procedure.

We also offer smaller FUE procedures (up to 500) that we don't have to shave at all.  For these patients we cut short individual hairs that are to be harvested and there won't be any shaved area on the donor or recepient area after the procedurs.  We call this procedure: Celebrity FUE Transplant due to its popularity among celebrities.

Parsa Mohebi, MD
Beverly Hills Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.