Gogglebox star Chris Butland-Steed has his third hair transplant in two years with Crown Clinic

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Gogglebox star Chris Butland-Steed has had his third hair transplant in just two years after admitting: “I am the vainest man in the world!”
The TV favourite sought help with his hair because he was bullied as a child and called 'Chrissy Sissy' at school – creating deep insecurities over his appearance.
He has an aggressive form of hair loss which he covered up with wigs before having hair transplants with Crown Clinic surgeon Asim Shahmalak.
He had a £9,000 FUE (follicular unit extraction) procedure – the same as Wayne Rooney and Calum Best.
Around 1,500 hair grafts (more than 3,000 individual hairs) were taken from the back and sides of his scalp and replanted in the balding area around his crown.
Chris, 41, who has starred on the hit Channel 4 show since it started five years ago, said: “There is no point denying it – I am the vainest man in the world.
“I am a hair stylist and I pride myself on having wonderful, flamboyant hair.
“Unfortunately, nature gave me an aggressive form of hair loss which meant I have been losing lots of my natural hair since my early 20s.
“I would be completely bald like my dad now if I had not sought help from hair transplant surgeon Asim Shahmalak.
“He has very patiently replaced all my lost hair over the last two years and ensured I have the same glorious full head of hair I had when I was teenager.
“This third hair transplant is the final piece in the jigsaw and I won't require any further surgery.
“I can wear my hair any way that I want and feel completely happy and confident about my appearance. The self-confidence these procedures have given me has been priceless.”
Gogglebox is back on Channel 4 for a new series on Friday (Feb 23). 
Chris said he is still haunted by the bullying he suffered as a child.
He said: “It all came down to the fact that I was the camp boy at school. They called me Chrissy Sissy and created deep insecurities about my appearance that remain to this day.
“I have always wanted to defy those bullies by looking as good as I could and I definitely didn't want to be completely bald like my dad.
“I am lucky that the whole hair transplant industry has been transformed in the last ten years and you can now get a beautiful natural look and keep hold of your hair.
“It's no exaggeration to say that I look ten years younger as a result of the procedures and it has completely changed my life.”
Chris had his first procedure with Dr Shahmalak two years ago – filling out the front of his hairline.
He went under the knife at Crown Clinic again a year later so that he would look good for his wedding last July in Brighton to his long-term boyfriend, landscape gardener Tony Butland.
Chris had what will be his last transplant last week at Crown Clinic in Manchester.
He explained said: “I don't think I will need any further treatment and, to be honest, my donor hair is running low so I would struggle to have another procedure.
“I could have avoided having so much surgery by taking the hair loss drug Finasteride by I am not keen on putting chemicals in my body and I am too lazy to take a tablet every day.”
It will take up to a year for the newly transplanted hair to grow back.
And when it does, Chris wants to style it like his favourite hunk on TV, Emmerdale actor Michael Parr, who plays Ross Barton in the soap.
Dr Shahmalak treats lots of celebrity patients and his clients include Calum Best, TV doctor Christian Jessen and Homes Under The Hammer Martin Roberts.
He said: “Like a lot of people in the public eye, Chris wants to keep hold his hair and look good in TV.
“TV can be a brutal industry and there is a lot of pressure on performers to look their best.
“I see lots of celebrities who would rather keep their treatment secret but it is wonderful when a patient is happy to share their story like Chris.
“Hair transplants are transforming the lives of so many men. You can look years younger for the same price as upgrading your car. It is money very well spent.”
Bookings at Crown Clinic are up 25% in the last five years and a key factor has been the 'Rooney effect' – with young men copying stars such as the ex-England captain and celebrities like Calum Best in having a transplant.  

Our Surgeon

Dr. Asim Shahmalak

Dr Asim Shahmalak is a world-renowned hair transplant surgeon who performed the UK’s first eyelash transplant in 2009. He runs Crown Clinic – one of Britain’s most successful and best known hair transplant clinics. He has treated a number of high-profile industry leaders and celebrities including the medical broadcaster Dr Christian Jessen, best known for Channel 4’s Embarrassing Bodies.

Expert hair transplant surgery by Dr Shahmalak

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When the sun comes out, we know that we need to apply sunscreen to protect our skin, but many people forget to pay the same care to protecting their hair. Between the sun, sea and swimming pools, many of our favourite summer activities can significantly damage our hair – so the next time you go out to enjoy the sunshine, find out what you can do to protect it.


Why does sun damage the hair?


Sun damage to the hair is caused by the harmful UVA and UVB rays, which damage the outermost layer of the layer – the cuticle – and weaken the protein structure of the hair, making it dry, brittle and more prone to breaking. Some people find that their hair lightens in the sun, as the rays act in a similar fashion to bleach, stripping the melanin from the hair.


Protecting your hair from the sun


Wearing a hat is an easy way to protect your hair and scalp from the sun, especially if you’re outside when the sun is at its strongest. Hair SPF is also an option, which can usually be bought as a spray to be misted over the hair. Pay extra attention to the scalp – many people forget that the scalp can burn just as easily as the rest of the skin, ending up with an itchy, flaky, burnt scalp. If you do burn your scalp, rinse your hair in cool water and apply aloe vera to the affected areas, and make sure to keep your head covered when going outdoors.

If your hair is looking dry, try a deep conditioning treatment to restore some of the lost moisture to the hair, and avoid wearing your hair in any tight styles that may pull on the scalp. Summer is also a good time to temporarily stop using hairdryers, straighteners and any other hot tools to avoid adding to the sun damage.


Protecting your hair from the sea


Salt water is notorious for drying out the hair. It leaches moisture out of it, making it incredibly brittle and tangled, which can cause significant breakage. Before you go swimming, saturate your hair with clean water to prevent it from absorbing as much salt water, and don’t let it sit in your hair – rinse it thoroughly as soon as you get out of the sea. Deep conditioners and hair masks will also help replenish the moisture.


Protecting your hair in a swimming pool


Just like salt water, chlorinated water is very harsh and drying on the hair, so you can take similar precautions to swim in the sea. You could also try a swimming cap, as this not only prevents the chlorine from damaging your hair, but it will also protect your scalp from sunburn. If you have highlighted or blonde hair, be especially careful when in a swimming pool, as the copper and chlorine in the water have been known to form a film that sticks to the proteins in hair, turning it a green shade. Thankfully, this isn’t permanent, but make sure to enter the pool with wet hair and rinse it as soon as you get out.

However you are spending your summer, if you have any questions or queries about your hair, take a look at our hair advice or give our team a call.

Over the past few months, there have been a significant number of reports in the news of people experiencing hair loss after being diagnosed with COVID-19. As a result, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has listed hair loss as a possible long-term effect of the illness, along with symptoms such as fatigue, dizziness and joint pain. 

A study published by the medical journal The Lancet reported that 22% of the patients it had observed suffered from some degree of hair loss six months after falling ill, with women being more affected than men. 


Why does COVID-19 cause hair loss? 


Although there are several studies linking coronavirus and hair loss, many of the reports we hear about are anecdotal – at the moment, it’s too soon for scientists to officially establish a link between the two. 

However, the type of hair loss that COVID-19 sufferers are reporting seems to be consistent with telogen effluvium. Telogen effluvium occurs when more hairs than usual suddenly enter the shedding phase of the hair growth cycle at once, causing a more noticeable amount of hair to shed at once. It’s normal to lose up to 150 hairs per day, but if you spot that you’re losing much more than that – such as clumps coming out when you’re brushing or washing your hair – it could be telogen effluvium. 

Due to the length of the hair cycle, telogen effluvium typically occurs two or three months after a period of significant stress, which can include illnesses such as COVID-19. When undergoing stressful situations, the body puts all its resources into maintaining essential functions only – which, unsurprisingly, does not include hair growth. As a result, you end up with hair loss. 

However, several other conditions can cause hair loss – such as thyroid issues or nutritional deficiencies – so if you are concerned, visit your GP, who can rule out other underlying causes with a simple blood test. 


Will my hair grow back after having COVID? 


If the hair loss is the result of telogen effluvium, most people will find that the hair will eventually grow back without the need for treatment. Typically, once the trigger or stressor is removed, the hair will grow back on its own. 

If you notice that the hair loss is persisting, there are a number of medical, cosmetic and hair transplant treatments available to help – Crown Clinic offers a range of options to support those struggling with hair loss, so don’t hesitate to get in touch

When performed by a qualified, experienced hair transplant surgeon, hair transplants are a very safe procedure. Hair restoration is a minimally invasive treatment that allows patients to return home the same day, with the procedure only requiring local anaesthetic. 

However, if you undergo a hair transplant abroad – such as in Turkey – the risk attached is much higher. 


Risks of hair transplants in Turkey 


It’s no secret that undergoing hair transplant surgery in countries such as Turkey is a gamble. Every year, countless patients are reeled in by the low prices and package deals offered by overseas clinics. Many of the clinics boast ‘five-star’ ratings and an active social media presence, duping unsuspecting patients into thinking they are visiting a reputable clinic. Although, when you dig a little deeper, you may discover the reviews are faked and the ‘after’ pictures are heavily edited or taken from other clinics. 

Another trick that patients fall for is believing that a surgeon will be carrying out the procedure, as many of the clinics advertise that a surgeon leads them to convince patients that they are legitimate. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean a surgeon will be carrying out the hair transplant itself. In fact, many clinics hire under-qualified technicians with little training to keep the costs down, only seeking the supervision of a surgeon if the procedure goes wrong. 

Over the years, Crown Clinic has fixed countless botched hair transplants, mainly from overseas clinics. The most common problems that we see are unnatural-looking hairlines and unsightly scarring as the result of the surgery being carried out by unlicensed practitioners. Other risks are infections, as sanitation is often extremely poor at the clinics and damage to the scalp due to the result of the incorrect tools being used to carry out the surgery. 


Are there any side effects to having a hair transplant? 


If you choose to have a hair transplant in the UK with a reputable surgeon, side effects will be minimal. The hygiene standards will be incredibly high, meaning the risk of infection is negligible, and you will be given clear instructions on how to take care of your scalp after the procedure. Crown Clinic has an excellent aftercare service, offering a day-by-day guide to ensure optimum healing and results.  

Unlike at overseas clinics, where it can be impossible to follow up after the procedure to discuss any concerns related to your hair transplant, Crown Clinic is more than happy to answer any questions you may have during this phase.