The toupee, a hairpiece for men which is designed to conceal a receding hairline or other types of hair loss, has become something of a joke within the fashion and beauty industry, and even among the general public. One of the primary reasons for this is that finding a toupee that even remotely appears to be natural is a difficult task. When a man wears a toupee, it rarely enhances his appearance—in fact, the opposite is generally true. The hairpiece generally looks fake, making it a negative addition to the male appearance.
The History of the Toupee
Many people do not realize that the toupee is, in fact, an accessory that dates back to ancient times. The first example of what we could consider to be a toupee was discovered in an Egyptian tomb circa 3200 BC, over five thousand years ago. These controversial hairpieces initially came into fashion because, in ancient times, baldness was considered to be extraordinarily unattractive. Male pattern baldness, a genetic hallmark which has persisted through many thousands of years of existence, was not socially acceptable and could hinder a man from being taken seriously by his peers and by potential mates. In response to this resounding criticism, hairpieces were created and worn by men experiencing hair loss, a trend which has lasted throughout the ages.
Modern Attitudes on Male Hair Loss
Today, the strong bias against male hair loss has dwindled significantly. It is a widely acknowledged fact that male hair loss is simply a genetic factor that many men face, and that it does not indicate decreased virility or masculinity. While at one point in history a fully bald head would be considered extremely unappealing, it is not currently uncommon for men with full heads of hair to shave their head in order to attain a specific appearance or for the sake of their comfort and convenience. Because of this, shaving one’s head as a response to a receding hair line is not uncommon, nor is simply maintaining the hair as-is despite hair loss.
Treatments Which Make Toupees Unnecessary
In addition to differing attitudes about male baldness, another factor that decreases the need for men to wear toupees is the amount of treatments that are currently available for male pattern baldness. Modern science and medicine have isolated the basic causes of hair loss, and as such, have formulated a variety of methods with which men who are experiencing loss of hair can encourage hair regrowth. Many shampoos and serums exist which can be applied directly to the scalp, assisting men in the regrowth of a full head of hair. Additionally, oral medications are available to encourage hair regrowth. Certain lifestyle changes have also been indicated to help men stop hair loss and encourage regrowth, many of which include the addition of vitamins that encourage the body to produce extra collagen and keratin, nutrients important for hair growth. Even if none of these treatments work for an individual, the cosmetic application of hair plugs to assist in hair regrowth is also an option. Hair transplants are available as well (such as Hair Transplant Houston).
So, Are Toupees Extinct?
To say that toupees are extinct would be inaccurate—every now and again, one might see a man wearing a toupee, generally in a very obvious manner. However, with the vast number of treatment options available for male pattern baldness in this day and age, along with the decreased stigma against male baldness, toupees are considered to be much more unfashionable than simply sporting a bald head, and, as such, have fallen out of common use. If they aren’t extinct yet, it may not be long before they are.
This article was composed by Brendan Sanderson, a freelancer based in New Orleans, Louisiana. Those having hair issues should visit Hair Restoration Houston to see if restoration may be the solution