As we age, many of us deal with thinning hair or balding spots on different parts of our head. Now you might wonder if you can use a hair tattoo or SMP (scalp micropigmentation) to cover these flaws. You might even search in Google “is scalp micropigmentation only for bald people?”. Well, we are here to tell you that even if you have long hair but are suffering from partial hair loss problems, you can definitely use the miracle of SMP, because a hair tattoo also works for long hair .

In this post we’ll learn everything about hair tattoo for long hair.

Brief intro to SMP

If you are a newcomer in the cosmetic solutions’ world, or if you have just started learning about hair tattoos, we’ll be happy to tell you about it:

SMP or Scalp Micropigmentation is a cosmetic hair tattoo method that simulates the shape of shaved hair follicles on the head, such as the image below:

SMP Hair Perth
In scalp micropigmentation, the hair tattoo artist simulates the shape of shaved hair follicles on the client’s head.

These hair dots are usually inserted with different color hues to replicate a shadowy effect and thus create a natural looking “shaved” effect on the head. Now as you may have guessed, mostly completely bald people get SMP done, however this is not the only group that could benefit from SMP.

Is SMP for long hair possible?

Scalp micropigmentation also works for long hair, but with different goals than SMP for baldness.

In scalp micropigmentation for long hair, actual hair is not added to the head. Also hair growth is not affected. In hair tattoo for long hair, the artist will combine the hair follicle shaped dots only in places of your head that are missing hair and that the skin is visible Take a look at the picture below:

Scalp Micropigmentation / Hair Tattoo for thinning hair after Hair transplant
The artist has used SMP to cover the areas of head missing hair and showing skin.

Scalp micropigmentation also works for long hair, but with different goals than SMP for baldness. Scalp micropigmentation adds density to thinning hair and your hair can look even fuller.

Who can consider SMP for long hair?

Here we’ll take a look at the groups who can be proper candidates for SMP for long hair:

Women suffering from female pattern baldness

The first group that might naturally come to mind when we mention hair tattoo for long hair, are women suffering female pattern baldness.

Female pattern baldness is the most common hair loss issue in women. In this condition as a result of hormonal problems or genetic conditions, women start to experience hair thinning and hair loss usually on top and crown of the head. Now there are medications to help slow down this process or even surgical hair loss treatment options, but SMP is the best solution for long hair for these reasons:

SMP vs Regrowing programs and Medication:

SMP vs surgical solution like Hair transplant

Men suffering from male pattern baldness

Some men experience hair loss on the top and front of their head as a result of genetic reasons and mostly as they age.

If male pattern hair loss is not too extreme in men, they can use scalp micropigmentation to cover the areas without hair, while also keeping their natural hair’s length.

Men and women suffering alopecia areata

People suffering from alopecia areata lose their hair in patches due to their immune system attacking hair follicles by mistake. This hair loss could affect the head hair or even eyebrows. The severity is also different from person to person. Alopecia areata sufferers usually Suddenly lose hair, starting with one or more circular bald patches that may overlap.

If these patches remain small, men and women can use scalp micropigmentation for long hair to cover up those patches without having to shave their head off completely.

Men and women suffering diffuse thinning

Diffuse thinning refers to a condition of hair loss throughout the scalp as opposed to pattern baldness and alopecia areata that cause hair loss in specific areas of the scalp. Diffuse thinning hair could be caused by different reasons such as stress or medicine side effects.

Now people suffering from this condition don’t usually experience severe hair loss, therefore they can use scalp micropigmentation to cover up the areas lacking hair.

Who shouldn’t consider SMP for long hair?

If you are battling with severe hair loss throughout your scalp, or if you have substantial recession of frontal hairline or side profiles, then scalp micropigmentation will most certainly look unnatural with your long hair, so it’s best to always keep a shaved head.

To get a better idea of who shouldn’t consider hair tattoo for long hair, check out the image below. This image is called The Norwood Scale.

The Norwood scale shows different stages of pattern baldness.
In stages 5,6 and 7, in which hair loss is severe, hair tattoo for long hair will not work and the client has to shave their head if they desire SMP.

A couple of questions on SMP for long hair

We talked about the best candidates for SMP for long hair. But we know that clients might have many more questions, so here we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions on scalp micropigmentation for long hair.

Is hair tattoo for long hair a good option for thinning hair?

If you have long hair but suffer from partial hair loss (not in the front of your head), then SMP for long hair is your best bet. Scalp micropigmentation is less expensive than surgical options and more maintenance free than non-surgical methods. It is less painful and also has less down time.

Does scalp micropigmentation damage existing hair follicles?

SMP or other forms of cosmetic tattoo for that matter are done in a shallow depth. This means that the needle or the pigments do not penetrate deep enough to damage the existing hair follicles. Therefore, there is no need to worry about this issue. For more in depth info on scalp micropigmentation and its effect on hair loss, check out this article.

SMP procedure
In hair tattoo the needle or the pigments do not penetrate deep enough to damage the existing hair follicles.

Should I shave my hair for smp?

There is no need to shave your hair for SMP procedure, The artist combes your hair aside and can apply SMP between your hair.

Does smp thicken hair?

SMP doesn’t affect your existing hair. However, it can be used to add density to it. This is also known as “hair thickening treatment”.

Does a hair tattoo for long hair look fake?

This is a huge concern for many people considering SMP for long hair. This depends on the degree of your hair loss or thinning and of course the artist’s expertise. That’s why we recommend choosing SMP clinics that offer consultation sessions prior to the actual session. This way you can show the artist your scalp and also check out their before and after photos to make sure their work looks natural.

Does SMP cause hair loss?

No, SMP doesn’t affect your hair in any way as it is done on the top layer of the skin.

Do I need to touch up my SMP for long hair?

 Yes, you will need a scalp micropigmentation touch up session after a couple of years (usually between 5-8 years).

Does Scalp micropigmentation for long hair work on grey hair?

Yes, the hair color in SMP is chosen based on the natural hair color.


In this article we learned about the possible candidates for SMP for long hair: people suffering from pattern baldness, diffuse thinning hair or alopecia areata. Also if you are suffering thinning hair for any other reason or you have bald patches and you don’t want to consider surgical options, there is a great chance that SMP will work for you.

We also recommend our guide to surgical hair loss treatments and non-surgical hair loss recovery methods for more information.

Also if you are considering hair tattoo for long hair, we recommend you book a consultation session with us at ELKA SMP. Our consultation sessions are free and even conveniently held online.