Which Hair Replacement Gives More Natural Results: Hair Plugs or Hair Transplant Surgery?

Doctor Answers 16

Hair Restoration technology

Today nobody should be using plugs. The latest technology is FUE or follicular unit extraction which is where the grafts are harvested one by one from the donor region. This technique does away with the linear scarring that the Strip method creates. FUE has shorter down time for the patient and when done in the right hands produces an amazing hair restoration result that is natural looking and 100% undetectable.

The two transplant methods widely used today are FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) and STRIP (Follicular Unit Strip Surgery). These procedures differ in the way the donor hair is extracted.

STRIP requires the cutting of a large strip of scalp from the patient’s donor area. The incision is then stitched shut, and the grafts are harvested from this strip.

The drawback to this procedure is that the patient is left with a long, linear scar across the donor area, preventing them from being able to sport a short hairstyle in the future, as hair must be kept longer in order to cover the scar. Of greater concern, however, is that the FUSS procedure greatly decreases the useable donor hair, affecting the patient’s capacity for future procedures to restore their hair to its full potential.

The revolutionary FUE Hair Transplant procedure addresses these concerns, as individual follicles can be extracted directly from the donor area, eliminating any strip removal. This results in a significantly reduced healing time and NO linear scar. The patient has the freedom to trim and style their hair as they please. Furthermore, the lack of strip removal maximizes amount of donor hair that can be harvested.



Beverly Hills Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Which is better FUE or FUT #hairtransplant

Each hair transplant procedure should be customized to the patients needs and concerns, degree of hair loss, donor availability, hair characteristics and patients age.  Once these factors are considered, an experienced hair transplant surgeon should consult with the patient to give th best recommendation that fits that individual.  

Michael Meshkin, MD
Newport Beach Hair Restoration Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Hair transplantation

Today there are no plugs being done, only follicular unit transplants which are completely normal looking

William Rassman, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

FUE hair transplants produce very natural results

Almost no one does hair plugs today, and hair transplants have advanced so much that the results are very natural-looking. In my practice, I prefer the FUE method of hair transplants using NeoGraft. It requires less downtime for my patients and does not have the associated risks of the surgical strip method. FUE is also advantageous in that it leaves virtually no scars. It is a method that has revolutionized the industry.

Cory Torgerson, MD, PhD, FRCSC
Toronto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 124 reviews

Who is doing hair plugs?

Who is doing hair plugs? No one should be doing hair plugs nowadays.  If someone is offering that type of surgery, you should stay way.  

Jae Pak, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

Which Hair Replacement Gives More Natural Results: Hair Plugs or Hair Transplant Surgery?

I'm not sure why you are asking this question, as I cannot imagine anyone offering hair plugs any more! I have been in practice for 22 years and I have never used them.
Certainly today's technology is so different and so superior that it should have a different name to it. It is a huge challenge to detect a properly performed hair transplant surgery in this day and age. 
Years ago I used to correct a lot of hair plug surgery that looked hideous, but we must have treated the vast majority as its rare to see one now. See the link for a website dedicated to correction of old techniques or any poorly performed hair transplant

Bessam Farjo, MBChB
Manchester Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Hair Transplant vs. Plugs

Hair transplant surgery most definitely gives a more natural result.  Transplant allows us to be create hairlines with single and double hair graft, which is the way our hair is naturally designed.  With the right technique, surgeon, and team, it should be unrecognizable that hair has been transplanted.

Jeffrey W. Hall, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Hair Transplant for Restoration

Hair transplant surgery is definitely the better choice. Hair plugs have become an antiquated method of hair restoration as compared with today’s technologies, namely follicular unit extraction. FUE hair transplant harvests donor hair in individual follicular units and has the ability to extract hair from anywhere on the scalp, in addition to the use of non-head hair using the uGraft. This widens the donor pool and makes the result of hairline design softer and more natural-looking. In typical cases FUE hair transplant also proffers cosmetically negligible scarring overall.

Sanusi Umar, MD
Redondo Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Hair Plugs - A Thing of the Past

Hair plugs are a thing of the past . Most work today is done with follicular units put in with needle holes. No plugs, no punches. One, two ,or three hair transplants done individually

Which hair transplant procedure gives the most natural appearance?

There is no doubt about this answer. Plugs with 5 or more follicles looks like a row of corn or a dolls hair. Yes, you can go back later and fill inbetween the plugs, but it is unnecessary when using the FUE (follicular unit extraction) techniques. This is when a 1 millemeter graft is taken from the back of the head instead of a strip of scalp. Each 1 mm follicular unit may contain from one to four follicles and thus hairs. There is no visible scar at the donar site, and if skill is used, the recipient site is scarless as well. For the front line of hairs, the one hair grafts are used, and behind that those with more hair flolicles are used for increased density. I prefer the NeoGraft system because it is the newest, and in my opinion, the best automated FUE technology. Our patients are thrilled with the procedure, and there the evidence of the patient having had a transplant is virtually zero. With the NeoGraft 2500 grafts can be done at one sitting, and that is about 6,000 hairs. It is done under local anesthesia and the recovery time is just a few days. Many patients go back to work in 2-3 days. There are no sutures to remove.

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.