Mature Hairline vs. Early Patterned Hair Loss

I get to see a lot of young patients who visit me panicking about their receding hairline.  Many of them don’t have a family history of hair loss and no microscopic signs of hair loss in other areas of their scalp.  I call this condition hairline maturation.

There is a difference between maturing someone’s hairline and early male patterned hair loss. From the ages of 18-19 and into their early 20, most Caucasian males experience a change in their hairline. The “kiddie hairline” of their early years with closed corners (which is similar to female hairline) matures and goes up (especially the corners) to a more elevated stage. This is known as a mature hairline. For an example of a mature hairline, look at photos of men that are age 4o and older. If the amount that the hairline moves up goes beyond that level, the male could be suffering from a receding and balding hairline.

In order to determine if a patient has a mature hairline or a balding hairline, a microscopic analysis of scalp and hair needs to be performed by an expert. People who go through male patterned hair loss generally show a significant amount of miniaturization at the beginning of the hairline.  This miniaturization continues to taper a few centimeters behind their hairline. This is an indication of active hair loss. Patients who have developed a mature hairline without further balding do not show signs of thinning and miniaturization of the hair past their mature hairline.