Sometimes you want to stand out: with those killer heels, that statement lipstick, the interesting hair that invites questions. Other times, you don’t want any fuss – you just want to blend in. In which case, a spray to cover bald spots is VERY handy.
Hair loss can reduce self-esteem, trigger anxiety/depression and make you scared to socialise, even with close friends. So anything that can alleviate the fear and shame of alopecia – if only for an hour – can be a real gift.
Here’s how a hair concealer spray helped me get through the festive period a few years back, plus some other popular cover-ups. Enjoy!
Emma’s ‘not a doctor’ disclaimer
Hi there, I’m an alopecian, I’m not a doctor! Any advice I give is based on my own research and personal experiences. This site is however reader-supported. When you buy through external links, I may earn a tiny affiliate commission. Learn more here.
A few years ago, I needed to blend in at some Christmas gatherings – a work party, a girls’ night out, a family reunion… y’know, festive stuff. I still had a relatively full head of hair then, aside from one medium-sized patch at the back.
I hadn’t yet worked up the courage to tell people about my alopecia; 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 take it off when I arrived at the restaurant like a hair-bearer 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.
Christmas came early when I found a L’Oréal spray that’s made to cover greys between colouring treatments. It’s also designed to help those with thinning hair, starting at the ‘root’ of the problem.
I wondered if I could use it to hide my bald patches, too. It seemed different from the cover-up sprays of red-faced men in cheesy Rogaine ads. This was something that lots of women used – and praised – so I was willing to give it a try.
The clever concealer is much more than spray paint for your head. It’s a mix of dyes and nanofibres, which entwine with the hair you’ve already got. That plumps up and thickens 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 clings to existing strands, it’s probably best for those with thinning hair rather than those with widespread bald spots. But if you’ve got a smallish alopecia patch, it can work wonders. At least, it did for me.
BTW, I’ve no connection to L’Oréal other than being sick to death of those “You’re Worth It” ads and their made-up “science bit”. I just found this spray to be really useful. But the other products in this post could be equally as effective, if not more so.
L’Oréal’s range of patch-covering sprays give you:
+ It’s very effective. The colour I chose 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 can also be a bit flaky – so if you have very short hair and are covering a large patch with the spray, don’t let people get too near your noggin!
+ 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. So take it off before bed, and wash your hands after each use.
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.
Shake the can, then hold it 4–6 inches from the scalp. Spray 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!
If you don’t fancy L’Oréal spray, bear the following in mind when shopping for a bald spot concealer.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
These products usually dye the patch and contain hair fibres to give the appearance of thicker hair.
If you’re worrying 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!
Check out these top cover-up options and say “bye bye Baldielocks”!
Toppik tops the list in many alopecia forums. It’s super easy to apply – just sprinkle the Keratin fibres directly onto your patches or around your hairline – and watch your new roots sprout! Toppik doesn’t merely dye the patch like other products; instead the electrically charged fibres bond with your existing hair upon contact.
Caboki uses natural plant fibres for a hypoallergenic product that saves you from an irritated or itchy scalp. Apparently, these 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!
Caboki reviews are really positive – but they recommend covering most of the applicator with tape for a smoother distribution. Alternatively, watch the cheesy product video to perfect the art of application.
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.
Of course, maybe you don’t feel like using a concealer for your bald spots at all. In these cases, I can offer up a few ideas:
Easier said than done, right? Obviously. Otherwise Lady Alopecia wouldn’t exist. But by making a few dietary changes (like avoiding inflammatory foods) and a few lifestyle changes to lower stress, you might start to see regrowth.
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”?!)
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 extensions, you can cover those patches entirely with hair… even if it ain’t yours.
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 I always get compliments for them! I love them so much, in fact, that I started making and selling my own.
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.
My concealer spray covered my bald spots and helped my confidence during the holiday season. But I made sure to nip it in the bud come January, as I didn’t want to rely on it too much.
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 those chemicals, 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.
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 special occasions, when you 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.
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Alopecian. Yoga Teacher. Copywriter. Here to share information, offer support and show people the adventures that can lie in hair loss. I’m proud to have alopecia and I want to help others embrace their baldness, too!
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