The Magic Of An Alopecia Concealer!

I love this spray to cover bald spots

Sometimes your aim is to stand out. To wear those killer heels, to apply that statement lipstick, to be the one with the interesting hair that begs people to ask your story.

Then again, sometimes you just want to blend in. We all do. No fuss, no attention, just the ability to go about our business. Something that a magic spray to cover bald spots might offer.

Blending in doesn’t come very easily for alopecians; especially if we’ve made the decision to avoid hair-wear products. And it’s a particularly distressing thing for women because, for some reason, hair loss is generally more accepted in men. Hair loss can reduce our self-esteem, lead to depression and make us scared to socialise, even with our closest friends.

So in my book, anything that can alleviate the fear and shame of alopecia – even if only for one night – is always welcome.

In this post, I’ll get into how a hair concealer spray helped me get through the festive period. But if you’re in a hurry, check out the 5 products I recommend here!

A quick look at what’s available

L’Oréal Root spray
DermMatch powder

Toppik
fibres

Caboki fibres
XFusion Spray

But back to my Cinderella story…

A couple of years ago, I needed to blend in at some Christmas gatherings – a work party, a girls’ night out, a family reunion… you know, festive stuff. Back then, I still had a relatively full head of hair, aside from one medium-sized patch at the back. And while I wasn’t looking to be the belle of the ball, I just didn’t want to bear my baldness to the world.

The thing is, I hadn’t quite worked up the courage to tell people about my alopecia yet; so I was relying on strategically placed hairclips to keep my secret safe.

Of course, at that time of year, the weather had other ideas.

As soon as I stepped out the door, a gust of wind would send my hard work out with it. If I wore a hat, I couldn’t just take it off when I arrived at the restaurant like a hairbearer could. Instead, I’d have to beeline it to the bathroom, where I could remove the hat in peace before carefully rearranging my clips.

Sometimes, I ended up sitting through the entire evening in my party dress and woolly hat. Bit of a strange look.

Then I discovered a special hairspray to cover my baldness!

It was like Christmas had arrived early. I came across a product by L’Oréal that’s actually made to cover greys between colouring treatments. It’s also designed to help those with thinning hair, starting at the ‘root’ of the problem. (Sorry. Had to.)

When I saw it in the pharmacy, I wondered if I could use it to hide my bald patches, too. A quick Google told me that yes, yes I could. It somehow seemed different from the cover-up sprays of red-faced men in cheesy Rogaine ads. This appeared to be something that lots of women used – and praised – so I was willing to give it a try.

How the bald spot cover-up works…

The clever concealer is much more than spray paint for your head. It’s a collaboration of dyes and nanofibres, which entwine with the hair you’ve already got. It works its magic to plump up and thicken your existing strands, providing coverage where you need it most.

It’s instant. And effective. And pretty subtle, if you know how to use it.

Note: Since the concealer is designed to cling to existing strands, it’s probably best for those with thinning locks rather than those with extensive bald spots. However, if you have a small patch of alopecia that you want to hide, it can work wonders. At least, it did for me.

Plus, Magic Root Touch Up is built to withstand the elements like wind, sweat and rain… so you can feel secure that your bald spot is covered, whatever the weather.

Any more benefits?

Plenty. L’Oréal’s range of patch-covering sprays provide the following:

  • Volume: The hair filler fibres cling to your existing locks, giving the illusion of a fuller mane.
  • Coverage: It can be used to hide bald spots, areas of thinning and pesky grey hairs, too!
  • Affordability: Since there’s a lot of competition in this field, this product is pretty cheap. And you don’t need to buy a new can after 1 or 2 applications; it lasts for up to 40. Yay!
  • Peace of mind: Something you can’t put a price on anyway, and something this spray brought me in spades.

Which cover-up spray to choose?

L’Oréal actually have a range of these babies available. The one I used was called Magic Root Cover Up and it’s available in 8 different shades – so just pick whatever one most closely matches your hair colour.

I went for the Medium Brown colour. Ok, so it wasn’t a perfect match for my auburn hair. (I should’ve chosen Red. Doh.) But it created enough of a scalp stain to make my shiny baldness fade into the background. If wind sent my curls flying around my face, or if taking off my hat lead to a big reveal, it wasn’t such a big deal.

But for each pro there was a definite con.

Pros & cons of Magic Root Cover Up

L’Oréal actually have a range of these babies available. The one I used was called Magic Root Cover Up and it’s available in 8 different shades – so just pick whatever one most closely matches your hair colour.

I went for the Medium Brown colour. Ok, so it wasn’t a perfect match for my auburn hair. (I should’ve chosen Red. Doh.) But it created enough of a scalp stain to make my shiny baldness fade into the background. If wind sent my curls flying around my face, or if taking off my hat lead to a big reveal, it wasn’t such a big deal.

But for each pro there was a definite con.

Pros Cons
It’s very effective. The colour didn’t quite match my natural shade, but it still did a great job of camouflaging my bald spot – even when my hair was too short to layer over it.
It’s fine from far away but… Close up it might look a bit like you’ve turned to the shoe polish for help. It also dries in quite a matte, chalky fashion… and can therefore be prone to flaking. So if you do have very short hair and are covering a large patch with the spray, don’t let people get too near your noggin! Let mystery be your mistress.
It lasts for ages. Until the next time you shampoo your hair, in fact – so if you don’t wash it every day, you can enjoy its benefits for longer. Especially useful for summer festivals!
Unless it’s a rainy festival, of course. Because the spray is more ‘water resistant’ than ‘waterproof’ and if your head gets soaked, you could be dealing with a streaky mascara effect. All down your face and neck. Not the look you intended for those party pics.
It comes off easily. Fortunately, there’s not much scrubbing involved when you do want to remove it. A quick shampoo or a dab with some baby wipes and it’s bye, bye dye.
It comes off a little too easily. Like all over your bed sheets. Because even though the spray lasts a couple of days, the residue still rubs off on your pillow – which is why I’d normally recommend taking it off at night. And remembering to wash your hands after fussing with your hair. And being very careful when putting on your festive clothes (wear an old headscarf, if you need to). Because beauty doesn’t always have to involve pain. But it often demands attention.

How to use it:

To cover bald spots (e.g. on the crown)…

Shake the can well. At first, hold it 8 inches from the patch and spray lightly before patting dry any excess residue. If you want thicker coverage, hold the can an inch or two closer and hit the scalp as directly as you can.

To cover grey roots or thinning hair (especially around the hairline)…

Again, get shaking. Then hold the can 4–6 inches from the scalp, before spraying both the root and partly up the length of the hair to blend the colours. Pat dry.

Et voilà, as those Parisians say – L’Oréal to the rescue!

BTW, I’ve no connection to L’Oréal other than hating those ‘You’re Worth It’ ads and their made-up ‘science bit’ when I was a teenager. I just found this spray to be really useful, for a short time anyway. But the other products I’m about to mention could be equally as effective, if not more so.

How to choose the right concealer

If you don’t fancy going for L’Oréal, there’s a couple of factors you should bear in mind when searching for your own festive best friend.

Subtlety

You don’t want the world to know you’re wearing a spray concealer, just like you don’t want people to know you’re wearing a wig to hide your hair loss.

Colour Match

This one ties into the above point. Because if you’re a pale blonde with a big ol’ patch of mahogany on your head, you ain’t taking the subtle approach! A lighter skin tone will match lighter sprays and so on. So look for a spray that gives you a wider palette.

Ingredients

To avoid damaging your existing hair, look for a spray that’s made from natural ingredients. The best ones have natural hair fibres in them (like human hair and Keratin) that blend easily with the rest of your locks.

Durability

The best sprays cover bald spots for an entire day… or even two. You want to have to scrub it off at night rather than it disappearing in the midst of seducing your crush from work. So always look for one that’s long-lasting, and waterproof.

Alternatives to spray products

Magic Root Cover Up is the only bald patch concealer I’ve used. And it worked out just fine. But there are other plenty of other products available, some of which get glowing reviews for their ability to mask alopecia.

Powders

Hair loss powders get a pretty good rep nowadays for disguising bald spots, thanks to some serious static electricity bonding by negatively or positively charged fibres. (Ooh, magic!) Here’s a powder that comes highly recommended in hair loss forums.

Makeup

If you’re worried about thinning hair and a visible scalp, mineral makeup could be your key to covering those bald spots. Its ingredients help it to stick to the skin better, even if you’re sweating – so goodbye, streaks and flakes! Simply apply it to the patch using a makeup sponge.

Oh, and some hair loss forums rave about using black eyeshadow to hide patches of alopecia, too. Although I’m not sure how waterproof it would be… so skip this if you live in a very rainy or sweat-inducing climate!

Recommended concealers

Although Magic Root Cover Up worked for me, it may not for everyone. So here are some other popular options to help you say bye bye to Baldielocks:

1. Toppik

Recommended by alopecia forums, Toppik looks like one of the best options out there. Just sprinkle or spray the Keratin fibres from each can directly onto your patches or around your hairline. The result is like you’ve just sprouted new roots! Toppik doesn’t simply dye the patch like some other products; instead the electrically charged fibres bond with your existing hair upon contact. And even though some reviewers complain about a) the price and b) the fact that the fibres can come off easily, others seem more than satisfied with their instant fake hair.

2. Caboki

This one works in the same fashion as Toppik – you sprinkle fibres directly onto your head. Caboki’s plant fibres are completely natural and it’s hypoallergenic, too… so you don’t have to worry about an irritated or itchy scalp drawing unwanted attention to your noggin. Plus, according to the manufacturer, the negatively charged fibres create a stronger bond and eliminate the risk of the flat, dull hair that positively charged fibres – found in other concealers – can create. It’s all terribly technical, really. But it sounds good to me!

Reviews are really positive about this fella – but they do advise to cover most of the applicator with tape for a smoother distribution (as apparently its new design makes it harder to apply). Alternatively, you can watch the incredibly cheesy product videoto perfect the art of application.

3. XFusion Economy

Another massively popular product in the fibre-sprinkling field is XFusion Economy. Like Toppik, the Keratin fibres bond with existing strands in some sort of romantic chemical plot. You can sprinkle to your heart’s content or use the spray applicator if you prefer – just make sure to hold it at least 6 inches from your scalp. Reviews suggest that for even better results, get the finishing spray to help the powder stick and to give a nice ‘n’ healthy sheen to your locks.

Recommended concealers

Of course, maybe you don’t feel like using a concealer for your bald spots at all. If that’s the case, I can offer up a few ideas:

1. Try to regrow hair naturally

Easier said than done, right? Obviously. Otherwise Lady Alopecia wouldn’t exist.

But by making a few dietary changes (like avoiding caffeine and eating lots of iron-rich foods) and a few lifestyle changes (like getting at least 8 hours of sleep a night and choosing gentler exercise over high-energy, stress-inducing forms), you mightstart to see regrowth as a result.

And don’t neglect your scalp, either. Use the best products for its health and go for a head massage as often as you can. You deserve it. (Or should I say, ‘Because you’re worth it’?!)

2. Invest in an alopecia wig

It’s what I did for years and although I eventually got sick of styling and wearing them, wigs gave me an enormous confidence boost at the time. Whether you choose synthetic or human hair wigs, full headpieces or clip-on extensions, you can cover those patches entirely with hair… even if it ain’t yours.

3. Get some headwear

I now have a full drawer of headscarves, for when I need to cover my baldness all day long. They give me a splash of colour and there are some really fun styles to try out, too!

4. Go for the chop

If you’re sick of constantly worrying about your bald patches showing, do something that puts you back in control. Shave all your hair off, like I did. Nothing to hide, so no need for a concealer. ’Nuff said.

Em proper bald

Spray for a day… then put it away!

OK, so the Magic Root Cover Up spray served its purpose; it covered my bald spots and it got me through the holiday season with confidence in my appearance. But I made sure to nip it in the bud come January, as I didn’t want to rely on it as a crutch.

Why? Well, just like I wouldn’t recommend teasing and freezing your hair into place with hairspray on a continuous basis, I can’t advocate daily use of these products, either.

Because with all the chemicals they contain, you’re not doing your existing hair any favours. And although the Magic Root Cover Up is ammonia and peroxide-free, and the other options use natural fibres, I still don’t like what they could do to hair that’s already in a weakened state.

Dousing your scalp with spray is not the best way of showing it the TLC it needs. And it’s not the recipe for regrowth. So no, I wouldn’t recommend root concealer spray as a long-term solution for covering bald spots. But it does make a great quick fix in times of crisis!

My advice? Keep a bottle in the bathroom for emergencies, those occasions when you just don’t want to worry about your hair for a change. The rest of the time, let those bald spots breathe!

Forget about blending in, prepare to stand out, and let yourself shine.

Lady Alopecia xxx

Related posts:

If you like what I’m reading, maybe you’ll like what else I’m into:

1. Yoga – Read my review of a special retreat centre on Ireland’s west coast.
2. Meditation – Learn how it can help with hair loss and happiness!
3. Nutrition – Some handy dietary tips, whether you’ve got hair or not!
4. Travel – My thoughts on how travel can affect your health.
5. Silly Stuff – Like the bald celebrities I’ve got a crush on.

Showing 2 comments
  • Emma
    Reply

    Hey, just want to say you’re great! I have traction/stress alopecia. Been bald at the sides of my head 15 years now. I’m 38 now. I am still trying to convince myself it’s not that bad I’m not that bothered about it but the truth is I am. As I’m getting older it’s bothering me a lot more, plus I’ve noticed it’s starting to spread into my hairline at the front of my head so it’s getting a lot more noticeable. The sprays are great but like you said I was getting into a habit of wearing it every day and knew it couldn’t be doing me any good. I am thinking of getting a nice cut to stop me from wearing my hair up but I just can’t help it. I don’t think I look good with my hair down, my face is small and round so in my head I look thinner when it’s up, jeez I can’t win with myself 😣 anyway sorry for the rant

    • Lady Alopecia
      Reply

      Hi Emma! Thank you so much for your lovely comment and for sharing your story. I know what it’s like to watch the patches spread and to feel helpless about it. And even though I’ve come to terms with it, right now my hair is going through a serious shedding phase and it can be so frustrating (not to mention, seriously annoying to clear up after – my poor bathroom floor! 😉 ) I would say go for the chop if you think it would cause you to worry about it less during the day. Talk to a hairdresser about a funky style so you can wear your hair down while emphasising your best features. They know what they’re doing! And it might give you huge relief to not have to tie it up every day or to apply sprays. I know I’m much happier now that I stopped trying to hide it…but that’s just my experience. I wish you all the best with whatever you decide!! x

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