Here’s How Those Quick-Fix Hair Fibers Really Work
There’s hope for those who suffer from spare, patchy areas of hair on the scalp when surgery is not an option. Of-the-moment go-to treatments, like PRP and PRF, are said to work wonders for those who suffer from thinning hair and hair loss, but like most procedures, these are not without their own set of disadvantages, namely high price tags, some post-procedure swelling and discomfort, and the need for multiple treatments. That’s where quick-fix hair fibers, like Toppik Hair Building Fibers ($25) and HairMax Hair Fibers ($35), come in.
Consisting of naturally derived keratin protein, when applied to the hair, hair fibers are almost a dead ringer for human hair. “They are becoming more popular because they are economical, easy to use, go on dry, are odor-free, and provide natural-looking coverage,” says Francesca Dubsky, director of marketing for HairMax. Available in a plethora of colors (shades can be mixed and matched together to create the perfect color), the fibers create an optical illusion on thinning areas and patches by instantly disguising them. “Fibers are also a great complement to invasive and noninvasive professional procedures and treatments, like PRP or even ViviscalPRO supplements, which may take time to show desired results because the fibers give an immediate effect of thicker hair,” says Emily Erwin, brand manager of Thinning Hair Solutions for Church & Dwight, the company that owns Toppik.
Once sprinkled or sprayed onto the hair, they shouldn’t shift, bleed or wear away. “Hair fibers have a strong natural charge that creates a magnetic effect, binding them to your natural hair to hide thinning areas and create the appearance of thicker, fuller hair,” says Dubsky. “They work best for those with minimal-to-moderate hair loss, where hair is thinning but still present on the head, because the fibers need something to grab onto—think of the head like a tree with branches and the hair fibers like leaves on the branches.”
There’s even special fiber extending sprays that strengthen the bond between the fiber and hair, likeToppik Fiberhold Spray ($10), for days when extra longevity is needed. Lasting on the hair until the next shampoo, any regular shampoo gently lifts the fibers up and out of the natural hair, leaving it clean and ready for another application.
But here’s what makes unisex hair fibers the ultimate beauty hack: they can be used in a pinch—they literally take seconds to apply—to fake a perfect ponytail, and can even be used to cover up the telltale signs of extensions.
By Elise Tabin.