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Can You Wear a Hat After a Hair Transplant?

Post-surgery recovery after a hair transplant has many nuances that you must be aware of and in this article, I look specifically at hats. Some people wear hats for fashion, some to keep their heads warm, and others because they want to cover their hair transplant immediately after surgery.

Whatever the reason, it’s vital you understand the dos and don’ts relating to wearing a hat after surgery and I give you a complete guide below. So, can you wear a hat after a hair transplant? Yes, but with considerations relating to post-surgery timeframe, and the type of hat.

Hat-Wearing Timeline Post-Surgery

I can’t simply say “Yes you can wear a hat after a hair transplant” as there are different stages involved based on how your hair recovers, and the types of hat you wear.

1-3 Days – No Hat

The first three days after your hair transplant your scalp is vulnerable and most likely swollen and developing scabs. If you immediately start wearing a hat during this period you can irritate your scalp and it can actually feel uncomfortable and painful too if you have swelling.

During this time, your grafted hair follicles are also vulnerable so any excess pressure from something like a cap can potentially damage them and pull them out.

3+ Days – Loose-Fitting Hats

After the first three days you can start to wear loose-fitting hats and indeed here at Dr. Yaman’s hair clinic in Turkey, we encourage this as it helps protect your hair follicles from external damage and sun damage.

Loose-fitting and adjustable baseball caps are the best option as you can make them fit loosely on your head as opposed to clamping down on your scalp and potentially exerting too much pressure. At this point, things like beanies and helmets should be avoided.

7+ Days – Any Hat Except Helmets

After the first week, things start to get a little more relaxed and you have greater flexibility in the types of hats you can wear. At this point, your scalp should feel better and any swelling and redness should be greatly reduced. There could still be some scabbing, but the scabs will be hardened as opposed to still forming during the first three days.

You can now wear any type of hat except helmets and this includes things like wolly hats and beanies.

10+ Days – Any Hat Including Helmets

Only until 10 days after your hair transplant should you wear a helmet – this could be something like a motorbike helmet or a bicycle helmet. If you want to ere on the side of caution then I recommend leaving helmets until a month after your hair transplant as this gives your follicles ample time to take root, heal, and stabilize.

Tips for Wearing a Hat After a Hair Transplant man wearing a cowboy hat

With that simple timeline discussed, I can provide some more generic tips relating to hat-wearing after your hair transplant that should help your recovery.

Wear a hat for the first two weeks when outside

For the first two weeks after your hair transplant your scalp has an increased susceptibility to sun damage and sunburn. As a result, whenever you go outside or spend prolonged periods in the sun until 2 weeks after your hair transplant you should wear a hat. This will protect your scalp from dangerous UV rays.

When indoors, don’t wear a hat

There is a temptation to wear a hat indoors too after your hair transplant, and indeed some people simply wear a hat indoors as a lifestyle or fashion choice.

I advise not doing this after your hair transplant for the first few weeks to give your hair and scalp proper air circulation to aid in the healing process.

Avoid Hats Made From Rough or Irritant Materials

Needless to say, wearing a hat that is made from abrasive, rough, or irritant materials is a no-go immediately after your hair transplant surgery.

These types of abrasive materials such as some types of wool or harsher fabric can cause irritation and give you the temptation to scratch your scalp. They can also cause increased tension and potentially pull your newly grafted hairs out. Stick with loose-fitting hats made from soft fabrics and materials.
Understand the Love-Hate Relationships of Hat Wearing Post-Surgery

As you can see, wearing a hat after your hair transplant surgery can be both a good and bad thing and it’s important to understand the difference. For the first three days, don’t wear a hat as this is when your transplanted hair follicles are the most vulnerable.

However, after the first three days, you can wear a loose-fitting hat and eventually progress to normal hats and even helmets. Additionally, it’s advised to wear a hat outside for the first two weeks to protect your scalp from sun damage.