Frequently Asked Questions
These are the most common FAQs. However, we would welcome the chance to speak to you directly to discuss your individual needs
Scalp Micro-Pigmentation (also known as SMP) is one of the more recently developed solutions for hair loss. During this non-surgical procedure, VON Clinic professionals apply a natural pigment to the upper dermis of the scalp, effectively replicating the appearance of hair follicles.
VON aim to camouflage the surface area of the scalp where hair loss has already occurred and, in turn, create a new hairline for the client replicating either a natural shaved head look or making thinning hair appear thicker. For many men and women it is a great solution to hair loss.
At the VON Clinic, we can also:
- Further enhance a hair transplant
- Camouflage scars and burns
- Work on beards and moustache
- Correct work done by other technicians work (colour correction) or removal in some cases with laser tattoo removal
Although the effects of SMP can be noticed straightaway, providing immediate aesthetic and psychological improvement for the client, the VON process requires 3-5 sessions with a practitioner. The first session will last the longest – up to 4 or 5 hours. From this the VON practitioner will discover how well the client’s accepts the pigmentation and how the overall effect looks, to allow them to tailor subsequent sessions so that the end result is remarkable.
Our highly-trained practitioners utilise meticulously designed colours and a unique application method to mimic hair follicles in the scalp. The procedure is a completely non-intrusive treatment and requires no surgery whatsoever. Our procedure boasts vastly lower costs and much lower risks compared to alternative hair replacement medications and practices.
No. Unlike the male version, the experience of hair loss for women will typically see a general thinning along a line where a centre parting might be. Like the male version, it is a question of degree. For some there will only be a small amount of loss and for others it may become gradually more noticeable. Hair restoration websites are dominated by images of men, but many women have significant hair loss challenges as well, and often have an even greater stigma associated with it. Causes of female hair loss can range from short-term stresses, pregnancy and certain medications to more permanent hormonal changes, vitamin deficiencies and traction alopecia (hair loss due to pulling and tension from braids, weaves and extensions).
SMP, delivered at an experienced and reputable clinic such as VON Clinic, can provide vital help for many women. Unlike for men, where the typical treatment sees men with bare scalps having a buzz cut replicated, the diffuse nature of the thinning hair on women can be helped significantly in appearance with the addition of created density.
All treatments are priced individually based on the exact requirements of each client as each treatment is bespoke. Prices can vary, but typically range between £500 for thinning hair (Norwood scale 1A for men and Ludwig Classification Grade 1 for women) to £1500 for full head coverage for men at a Norwood Scale of 4 and women at a Ludwig Grade of 3.
The Norwood scale (or Hamilton-Norwood scale) is the leading classification system used to measure the extent of male pattern baldness. Men typically lose their hair in one of several common patterns over the course of many decades. The Norwood scale provides easy-to-reference images that indicate different stages of balding.
Watch a quick video here
The Ludwig Classification separates female pattern baldness (androgenetic alopecia) into 1 of 3 unique stages, referred to as the Ludwig Scale. By classifying hair loss according to severity, the Ludwig Scale helps both VON clients and practitioners to better understand three major factors in the diagnosis and treatment of female hair loss.
Watch a quick video here
A professional provider will not refer to SMP as a hair tattoo as it is not and should not be considered a traditional tattoo. The replication of real shaven hair on the scalp or the appearance of thicker hair is a highly specialised process, and should only be attempted by those with specific knowledge in this field. It takes months of training and years of experience to perfect the VON Clinic SMP technique such that it mimics the 3D look of natural hair, and is best completed by those who do nothing else.
The SMP needles used by VON are much finer that tattoo needles and are actually as fine as acupuncture needles in order for precision pigmentation. They are inserted at a shallower depth than tattoos – the dermis. This layer of skin grows hair, produces sweat and oils, brings blood to your skin and influences your sense of touch.
If the pigment is placed only in the epidermis, the process will fail because the pigment will leak out within a few days after the procedure is done. If the pigment is placed too deep into the dermis, it will fail as it diffuses outside the confines of its original area of placement.
Different sized needles and techniques are employed for different results – from the shaven hair look to the appearance of thicker hair.
Tattoo and permanent makeup inks are also unsuitable. VON use specialised inks with no colour additives. Our charcoal based ink is used specifically for SMP to match exact hair follicle colour.
VON Clinic use only specially designed pigments. Neither tattoo paints nor permanent make-up dyes are suitable for this type of procedure. Tattoo ink is too dark and heals in the skin as dark blue. Makeup pigments are too concentrated and their formula doesn’t produce the necessary microscopic dot (instead they migrate in the oily skin on the scalp).
Different shades of pigment are used to create the most realistic and natural hairline for you. The pigments used at VON Clinic contain no metals or plastics in the ingredients – only a blend of natural minerals and carbon from witch hazel bark. Our pigments allow the body to heal faster and hold the colour better.
The SMP needles used by VON are much finer that tattoo needles and are actually as fine as acupuncture needles (some as fine as 0.12mm) in order for precision pigmentation. VON Clinics use needles custom made in facilities in Germany to match the precision needed to properly deposit the correct amount of pigment for natural looking hair follicles. Each single-use disposable needle is laser cut and inspected for precision according to strict standards.
SMP is a form of permanent cosmetics, but unlike tattooing or permanent makeup, the pigment is designed to fall within the same colour spectrum of your hair. The pigment contains no additional colorants or additives and will only lighten, not discolour over an extended time.
The VON SMP treatment will typically last between 4-6 years although we recommend a first session of control after about 12 months from the initial sessions. Subsequently, touch up sessions may be necessary depending on how well the after-care has been. VON provides a detailed after-care guide that is designed to ensure your results last as long as possible.
VON specialises in SMP for Men and Women but we also partner with other specialists for facial aesthetics and body enhancements as well as psychological and emotional counselling and treatments. Please see our partner page for more information
VON has treatment centres in Harrow, Harpenden, Stevenage and in Milton Keynes. All locations are within easy reach of London both by train and car. However we are also able to use consulting rooms in London (Harley Street) at client request and have the ability to offer clients treatments at home, subject to a site visit and conditions. Please enquire.