You may have heard people say that hair color affects hair loss in a number of different ways. One popular question is whether blonde-haired people are more or less likely to go bald.
The answer isn’t simple, but on a basic level, blonde people are more likely to experience hair loss than those with darker hair.
Do people with blonde hair go bald? Of course. But how much of this is due to Male Pattern Baldness and how much is due to other factors? Read on to find out more.
Are blondes more or less likely to go bald?
People with blonde hair are technically no more likely to go bald than those with darker-colored hair. Blonde people have a greater scalp density (hair thickness), but blonde hairs are naturally finer than other colors. This means they are more likely to be damaged and break.
This can make it seem like blondes are actually more likely to go bald, but not through Male Pattern Baldness. Instead, hair loss becomes more obvious in a blonde person who is already thinning or receding due to hair breakage.
This loss of ‘healthy’ hair strands means a receding hairline becomes more visible than a darker head of hair. Someone with black, brown, or red hair can use their remaining strands to cover areas where the hair is receding.
Do blondes go bald faster?
People with blonde hair don’t experience Male Pattern Baldness any differently to those with darker hair. However, Male Pattern Baldness is more obvious in blonde people because they are more likely to suffer hair breakage. This makes thinning or receding areas more visible.
As described above, blonde hair is thinner than darker-colored hair. This makes it more likely that healthy hair strands will break during styling.
If a blonde-haired person and a dark-haired person experience the exact same progression of Male Pattern Baldness, the blonde will appear to be thinning faster. This is because they experience hair loss from both their MPB and from the breakage of healthy hair.
Why is blonde hair thinner?
Blonde hair is thinner than darker-colored hair due to a lack of melanin, the chemical which gives pigment to hair strands. Melanin fills the hair strand, causing it to thicken. This means that blonde people, who have less melanin, have thinner hair.
Because of this, blonde-haired people are advised not to over-style their hair and to avoid heat treatments and hair straighteners. Even pulling hair into a ponytail or bun can cause hair loss from breakage. This is known as traction alopecia.
Technically speaking, blonde hair is actually thicker than darker hair, in that blondes have a higher hair count. At 140,000 strands, blonde people have a higher hair density than those with any other hair color.
However, because of how thin those hairs are, blonde people are more likely to experience hair loss through breakage.
What to do if your blonde hair is thinning
If you are experiencing Male Pattern Baldness, you have the same options as a blonde as anyone else.
You can still choose to get a hair transplant, of course. However, because blonde hair is thinner it will need more hairs to be grafted to achieve the required thickness.
One celebrity famous for their fair hair was David Beckham, who may have had a hair transplant around 2018.
It’s interesting to note that hair transplants don’t hurt as much as you might expect. There is some swelling and discomfort for a few days afterward, but this quickly settles.
Scalp micro-pigmentation is also an option. This involves tattooing your bald head to look like you’ve buzzed your hair down close. It can look very convincing, is cheaper than a transplant, and works for all hair colors.
Gradually cut your hair shorter
The worst thing to do is nothing. If you’re worried about what other people think, just remember that some people think baldness is unattractive, but most people think balding looks much worse!
If you have long hair, this can make it more obvious that you’re balding. The extra weight pulls the hair away from the root, exposing the scalp.
One blonde with famously long hair was the now-balding Poison singer Bret Michaels. When male pattern baldness started to take hold, Michaels used his signature bandana to hide the fact he was using (in his words), ‘the finest hair extensions money can buy’.
If you can already see your scalp through your hair, consider a mid-length haircut which will be more flattering.
If you’re a little further down your hair loss journey and a shorter style just doesn’t cut it, you can think about shaving your head.
Brave the shave
Personally, I believe in accepting and embracing hair loss rather than trying to disguise it. Yes, hair loss can be an extremely worrying and stressful experience. But worrying about baldness is usually worse than baldness itself, in my opinion.
Shaving or buzzing your hair down to a close-cropped hairstyle is the best way in my opinion. It’s the best way to stop worrying and start enjoying your new look. It also screams self-confidence, which is so much more important than how you look.
However, if you need help deciding whether the shaved look is for you, this might help: What would I look like bald?
Dying hair blonde to hide baldness is a false economy. Light-skinned people sometimes choose to dye their hair blonde to avoid the contrast between dark hairs and their visible scalp. However, bleaching hair can make it brittle and even more prone to hair loss from hair breakage.
Blonde babies often appear bald because, like most babies, their hair is very fine. Newborns’ hair is more visible if it’s dark in color, but blonde babies can appear bald simply because their hair is difficult to see. As they age, their blonde hair thickens and becomes more visible.
Many bald men notice very fine hairs on their bald spots. These are vellus hairs, usually much more soft and lighter in color than terminal hairs. These can appear blonde in color and unfortunately, are not a sign of hair regrowth.
Blonde people are no more or less likely to go bald than people with darker-colored hair.
However, blonde hair is thinner as it contains less melanin, the chemical that determines hair color.
Melanin thickens hair, which is why redheads have the thickest hair, while blonde hair is the thinnest of all.
This means that despite having the highest hair density, blondes experience more hair loss through breakage than people with any other hair color.