It’s long been speculated that Brendan Fraser had a hair transplant in the heyday of The Mummy franchise – one of the actor’s most notable works.
Still, even in the years following his alleged hair transplant, his hairline and overall hair density have continued to change.
And that’s led to all kinds of speculation. Some people have circled back to the question of Brendan Fraser hair transplant actually taking place. There are others who think it might’ve been a botched job.
But there’s also a camp that thinks Brendan had only been wearing wigs (before his Hollywood departure in 2014), and he’s sporting a scalp tattoo now. It’s time we break it all down.
Who Is Brendan Fraser?
Born in Indianapolis on December 3, 1968, Brendan Fraser’s parents are actually Canadian. Since his father worked for the Canadian Government Office of Tourism, he moved around quite a bit when he was young.
After attending the Upper Canada College boarding school, he finally graduated from Cornish College of the Arts (in Seattle) in 1990. And while the actor had plans to do further studies, his career got in the way.
The year following his graduation, he played a small role in the TV show America’s Most Wanted. In the same year, he also appeared as a sailor in the film Dogfight.
However, it wasn’t until the 1992 Encino Man that Brendan got on people’s radar. Featuring Fraser alongside Pauly Shore and Ke Huy Quan, this silly comedy’s still considered a quintessential 90s classic.
In the following years, Brendan became more and more associated with the comedic genre because of his works in Son in Law, Airheads, With Honors, Mrs. Winterbourne, etc. But it was the George of the Jungle (another kids’ classic) that raised his star even more.
And in 1999 came The Mummy, after which the butch-looking Fraser became the Hollywood heartthrob. The actor later revealed how physically demanding the franchise had been, even recounting a scene in which he “nearly” died.
The Mummy films continued till 2008 (let’s not talk about the Tom Cruise one), with the last one not doing so well. Still, it wasn’t a complete flop.
He also did some other films in the meantime, but following some problems in his personal life (divorce, alleged assault, mother’s death, health issue), the actor went on hiatus in 2014.
But it wasn’t long before the “Brenaissance” came with the actor’s comeback in The Whale – winning him an Academy Award for Best Actor.
At the time of writing, Fraser’s waiting for the release of the film Flowers of the Killer Moon (by none other than Martin Scorsese, starring Leo, of course!), in which he plays a supporting role.
Why Is Brendan Fraser Going Bald?
Those who experience it usually end up losing hair on the top of their scalp (from the hairline to the crown/vertex of the scalp).
A combination of genetics and hormones miniaturise the hair follicles on the scalp, and the result is permanent baldness.
A classification scale called the Norwood scale has been developed to measure the extent of a person’s hair loss.
Based on just that, Brendan’s hair loss seemed to be a Norwood 6 (at least for a while, before his hair density improved).
Did Brendan Fraser Get A Hair Transplantation Surgery?
It seems like Brendan Fraser had a hair transplant sometime between 2007 and 2008 – when the last of his Mummy films came out.
His hair loss started late into his career when he was in his 30s, but it’d progressed quite noticeably by the time he was approaching his 40s.
For a time, Brendan opted for long hair, probably to better hide the recession of his hairline and temple hair. It was like the one he had in The Mummy, only in real life, his hairline was not as straight or dense.
So, it’s possible that the actor was wearing a wig in the film itself. However, by 2007, Brendan Fraser’s hair loss had become quite noticeable.
The overall density had decreased, so his hair looked much thinner (follicular miniaturisation also reduces the diameter of the hair shaft). The actor went for a short spiky hairstyle, but the hair loss was still evident.
But come 2008 and Brendan’s thinning hairline started to look much fuller, which is why it’s believed that he had a hair transplant around that time.
Still, within The Mummy movie itself, it seems like Brendan’s wearing a wig (hair transplants can take a year or more to show full results).
That’s because he has a very prominent widow’s peak in the film, and he doesn’t have one outside of the reel life.
What Kind Of Hair Transplant Did Brendan Fraser Get?
It’s possible that Brendan Fraser had a FUT hair transplant. Around 2007 and 2008, it was this hair transplant technique that became more popular (the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery – ISHRS – stats show as much).
In this surgery, a strip of skin is removed from the back of the scalp. The size of the strip depends on the size of your balding area.
From that piece of skin then, individual hair grafts are cut out and placed into the small cuts/incisions made in the bald spots.
The procedure can give natural results, but the problem is the prominent linear scar left at the back of the head. The recovery can also be long and difficult.
For these reasons, the FUE hair transplant has become more popular over the years.
How Many Hair Grafts Did Brendan Fraser Need?
Considering that Brendan Fraser was a Norwood 6, he might’ve needed around 3,200-4,000 grafts for full coverage. This equals around 6,500 to 8,000 hairs, as each graft contains 2 hairs, on average.
But keep in mind that the final number of grafts you need can vary depending on how much hair you have in your donor area, the extent of hair loss, and your desired density.
So, you might be quoted a different number by your surgeon after they’ve assessed your case.
Was Brendan Fraser’s Hair Transplant A Success?
If Brendan Fraser did actually get a hair transplant, its results have definitely diminished over the years.
Here, it’s important to remember that transplanted hair doesn’t fall. It’s permanent, so it stays in place. But your non-transplanted hair can fall over time, which can cause overall thinning.
It seems like Brendan experienced something similar. While the shape of his hairline and temples is still intact, his scalp hair is quite thinned out.
In such cases, patients can opt for a second hair transplant as long as they have enough hair on the back and sides of their head (their donor areas). Although compared to his hair in 2018, Brendan’s hair in 2023 looks much denser, so it’s possible that the actor also opted for a second hair transplant.
Some even say that to not look too bald, Brendan Fraser had scalp micropigmentation. In this, follicle-like dots are tattooed on the scalp so the scalp doesn’t look too bald.
Did Brendan Fraser Wear Wigs?
It’s very likely that Brendan Fraser wore wigs, especially in his films, to hide his bald spots.
The shape of his hairline and hair density would like quite different in his movies and the premieres (or other red-carpet events) of those same movies.
Compared to his thinning hairline, his hair in the films had a more Travolta-esque wig quality to it.
And not to sound like a broken record, but the same happened with his hair in The Mummy films.
How Much Did Brendan Fraser’s Hair Transplant Cost?
In the US, the average cost of a hair transplant is around $8,000 (in Canada, it’s $10,000 – Brendan has dual citizenship).
Even back in 2007 or 2008, the surgery wouldn’t have been cheaper because of the large number of grafts he needed.
It’s likely that Brendan Fraser’s hair transplant cost tens of thousands of pounds because he would’ve needed more than 3,000 grafts.
Clinics in the US (and Canada) usually charge by the number of grafts you need. So, the balder you are, the more it’s going to cost you.
Brendan Fraser’s hair transplant doesn’t seem to be just a rumour. Seeing how bald Brendan was, he would have needed a hair transplant to permanently restore his hair.
There are non-surgical hair loss treatments as well like PRP injections, laser, minoxidil or finasteride. But they’re not likely to give you noticeable or long-lasting results. With medications, adverse side effects are another problem.
So, a hair transplant is usually the go-to option. And Brendan’s definitely not the first celebrity hair transplant. Many others, like Jimmy Carr, James Nesbitt, Gordon Ramsay, etc., have also had hair transplants.
And if you feel like getting one as well, you should make sure to find a qualified medical professional for the best results.