If you’ve noticed a change in Steve Carell’s hair during his career, you might be wondering whether the actor has had a hair transplant. So let’s dive right in:
Did Steve Carell get a hair transplant?
Although he’s never publicly confirmed or denied having a hair transplant, Carell’s hairline is notably thicker than it looked earlier in his career. This would suggest that the Hollywood star has had some kind of transplant surgery to fix his Male Pattern Baldness.
The most likely treatment that the star of The Office may have undergone is a follicular unit extraction (FUE) transplant.
This process involves moving individual hair follicles from elsewhere on the body and transplanting them into the scalp.
Of course, Carell isn’t the only celebrity to be the subject of such speculation. There have been strong rumors that David Beckham had a hair transplant around 2018.
But from looking at his hair throughout his movie and TV career, we can start to look at when Carell had the procedure.
When did Steve Carell get a hair transplant?
It looks as if Steve Carell had a hair transplant in 2006, after his appearance as Michael Scott in season one of The Office in 2005. Scott’s slicked-back hairstyle revealed thinning at the front of his hair, which had gone by 2007 when Carell starred in Evan Almighty.
There have been several discussions about Carell’s changing hair during his time in The Office. Some fans believe that the Gordon Gekko look in season one was designed to give Michael a balding look.
The theory here is that when his hairstyle changed to less of a ‘wet look’ for season two, this was more forgiving than the heavily-gelled style. Fans have suggested it was this that reduced the appearance of his thinning hair, rather than a transplant.
However, his hair seemed to have gone through a transformation by the release of Evan Almighty in 2007. Carell was sporting a shorter haircut, making it difficult to directly compare, but his thinning fringe has been notably absent ever since.
Steve Carell’s hair loss journey
Curly Sue (1991)
Carell’s first on-screen credit acts as a record of his original hairline. Playing a waiter called Tesio in a restaurant scene, Carell had developed a mature hairline. His hair was parted at the side, showing nothing more than minimal recession at corners of his hairline in his late 20s.
This is the hairline someone of his age would expect, with 96% of caucasian men developing a mature hairline at some stage after puberty. A slight elevation of the hairline and some receding at the temples doesn’t necessarily mean the start of the balding process.
All My Children (1996)
There are shades of Michael Scott in Carell’s 1996 appearance on hit soap All My Children. The cringe-worthy, misplaced self-confidence is there, but still no glimpse of any thinning of his thick, dark mane.
Bruce Almighty (2003)
Fast-forward to his first major role, and Carell’s hair is much shorter but with no signs of hair loss at 41.
The side parting can hide a multitude of sins at the front, but there’s no doubt his hair hadn’t yet receded at the temples.
By the time he played lovable Brick Tamland in the hilarious Anchorman, Carell’s hair was starting to show signs of Male Pattern Baldness.
His temples had started to recede, with an obvious difference from just a year earlier. However, when he sported the same hairstyle 4 years later as Michael Scott in Season 5 of The Office, his temples would look significantly fuller.
This suggests that between 2004 and 2008, Carell went through a real-life hair treatment of some kind, most probably an FUE (follicular unit extraction) transplant.
The Office season 1 (2005)
When Carell auditioned for The Office, he still had a side parting that looked fine for a man of 42.
However, the change in hairstyle and heavy use of hair product for the filming of season one highlighted that his hair was thinning significantly.
Little Miss Sunshine (2006)
Shooting much of Little Miss Sunshine outdoors did Carell no favors. During scenes filmed by the ocean, his hair was blown around by the wind. This showed more thinning of the frontal area of his scalp.
However, this would be the last major on-screen appearance where hair loss seemed to be an issue for Carell. The suggestion is that his hair transplant took place shortly after this role.
Evan Almighty (2007)
Carell went shorter again as he reprised his role as Evan Baxter, but eagle-eyed fans noticed that his hair looked suddenly thicker at the front.
The corners of his hairline were still missing, but the hair loss at the front wasn’t as visible as he went back to a side parting. However, it did appear that his hair had gotten thicker, in contrast to the hair loss he’d experienced in the previous few years.
The Office season 9 (2013)
Carell’s hairline remained intact for the six years between Evan Almighty and his cameo in the final episode of The Office. This strengthened rumors that the secret to his static hairline was a transplant, as his frontal hairline hadn’t moved since 2006.
The Morning Show (2019)
Six years later, Carell starred alongside Jennifer Aniston in The Morning Show, where he played (ahem) an anchorman.
Now he had a longer hairstyle that was significantly graying but still not showing any further signs of hair loss.
Note: There are a number of DHT blockers on the market, including vitamins and shampoos. Before you try them, make sure you’re aware of the side effects of DHT blockers.
He may also have improved his diet, although this alone is unlikely to have caused such a dramatic improvement. It’s far more likely that his thicker hairline is the result of a transplant.
Did Steve Carell get hair plugs?
It’s very unlikely Steve Carell fixed his hairline with hair plugs. This version of a hair transplant looks very unnatural compared to more modern techniques, whereas Carell’s hairline looks very natural. He doesn’t have any of the tell-tale signs of hair plug patients.
Specifically, Carell’s hair is very even. People who have hair plugs have around 20 hairs at once removed from the back of their head and transplanted into the affected area. This results in ‘bunches’ of hairs with gaps in between.
This unnatural appearance is the reason hair plugs have fallen in popularity compared to techniques like FUE, which is more likely the option Carell chose.
Michael Scott’s changing hairline
Carell’s most famous character is arguably the delightfully awkward Michael Scott, manager of paper supplies company Dunder Mifflin in The Office.
As mentioned above, Scott’s hairline changed dramatically after season one – here’s a look at what happened after that:
Season 1 – the ‘Gordon Gekko’
The hair and makeup team on The Office gave Carell a product-heavy, slicked-back haircut for his debut as Michael.
This revealed obvious thinning at the front of his hair, with the gel causing the hair to clump together. Being able to see your scalp through your hair, especially when wet, is one of the most obvious signs of hair loss.
Season 2 – high and dry
Michael’s hair changed as his character became more likable in season two. Gone was the overuse of hair products as the producers seemed to hide his hair loss to make him less of an easy target.
However, it was still easy to see how thin Carell was looking across the front of his hairline.
Season 3 – further thinning
Season 3 was released in September 2006 and Michael’s hair still looks thin at the front. If Carell did have a transplant, it was likely done once season 3 had wrapped.
Season 4 – temples filling in
By the fourth season, Michael’s hair is looking much thicker. His temples are now looking less affected by hair loss than in previous years.
Season 5 – side parting
In season 5, Michael’s hairstyle switches to a neat side parting. There is a noticeable improvement in the amount of hair at Carell’s temples compared to his appearance as Brick in Anchorman four years earlier.
Season 6 – still going strong
A year later, Michael Scott is still in charge of The Office. Now 47, Carell’s hair has shown no further evidence of thinning or receding.
Season 7 – out with a bang
This was Michael’s final season as Regional Manager of Dunder Mifflin as he was sadly fired. His hair was styled in a hybrid between the backward-combed quiff of earlier seasons and the sensible side parting from season 5.
Still no sign of hair loss, with a thick frontal area and no further recession at the temples.
Season 9 – Michael’s return
Michael makes a cameo in the final episode – now slightly graying, but still sporting a fully intact hairline.
Why is Michael’s hair different in season 1?
In season 1 of the office, Michael’s hair appears to be balding, whereas it looks thicker in later seasons. This is due to a heavily-gelled, slicked-back haircut making him look thinning in season 1, and a probable but unconfirmed hair transplant between seasons 2 and 3.
Here’s a look at Michael Scott’s hair as it progressed over the seasons:
The contrast between seasons 3 and 5 were enough for me to decide that Carell probably had a transplant. Season 4 looks like his hair hadn’t fully regrown, but there’s a big difference a year later:
Although Steve Carell has never publicly confirmed or denied having a hair transplant, It’s highly likely.
At the start of 2006, his hair was thin at the front and receding at the temples. A year later his frontal hairline had a much more solid line, and his previously receding temples even seem to have filled in over time.
Despite there being a host of successful bald actors, Carell works in an industry where image is important, so I personally don’t blame him for having the procedure. Jude Law’s receding hairline never seemed to affect his career, but not many of us are fortunate enough to be as attractive as Jude, with or without hair!
For Hollywood action stars like Bruce Willis and Jason Statham, hair loss can work for the bald movie characters they tend to play. Henry Cavill’s hair loss has been well documented and he may decide to go bald or have a transplant in the near future.
Carell plays much more straight-laced characters, where baldness might not be appropriate in the eyes of casting agents.
Of course, he might have decided to undergo the transplant for personal, as well as professional reasons. It can be tough for men to accept hair loss and it can affect their confidence.
If you’re experiencing a receding hairline or thinning on top, a hair transplant is a permanent solution, and a good option to consider. If you’re curious about the procedure but nervous about the pain, check out this article about whether hair transplants hurt.
Of course, you can also give the bald look a try, so here are a few things to consider before you shave your head.
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