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Permanent SMP Vs Temporary Tricopigmentation

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Permanent Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP) and temporary trichopigmentation both address hair loss issues as well as scalp visibility. Custom pigment is applied to the scalp to create the appearance of natural realistic hair follicles. There are similarities and key differences with the outcome between SMP and STP. One may be more suitable for you than the other.

Both are scalp tattoo treatments, used to treat different types of hair loss including  pattern baldness in men and women.

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At Simon Symeou SMP, we receive enquiries asking about the difference between SMP and tricopigmentation, and how it compares to scalp micropigmentation.

Tricopigmentation is a temporary form of scalp micropigmentation where it fades after 6 to 9 months and completely disappears within a couple of years. SMP however, starts to fade after 3 to 5 years (the SMP fading is resolved with a top up of SMP). 

If your hair starts to thin out, recede continuously, or become bald, you might consider shaving off the remaining hair. 

Permanent Scalp Micropigmentation (SMP)

• SMP Longevity: Permanent SMP is meant to last for anywhere from 3 to 5 years before fading starts. The pigments applied remain in the skin indefinitely, and eventually need a touch up. Or after 5 years you may decide to have the SMP lasered away.
• SMP Pigment: The inks for SMP are specially formulated and contribute to SMP looking realistic and natural. The pigment sits deeper in the skin when compared with temporary options.
• SMP Procedure: Three to five SMP sessions are needed; and each session lasts for a few hours. Tiny micro dots are carefully and meticulously applied, into the scalp with needles specially made for SMP.
• Who is SMP for? It is suitable for all stages of hair loss and if you are looking for a long-lasting solution that requires very little maintenance.
• SMP Maintenance: A touch-up is needed every few years to maintain the colour depth & original results.

Temporary Trichopigmentation

• Trico Longevity: It’s designed to last for a short period, on average 6 to 9 months and as long as 18 months. After this time, the pigment fades away and requires complete reapplication to maintain the original treatment.
• Trico Pigment: Biodegradable pigment is used and this pigment fades over time. If hair loss progresses, more tricopigmentation can be applied as natural hair loss progresses.
• Trico Procedure: This is very similar to Permanent SMP in terms of the application, but the pigment is not applied as deeply within the skin. Several sessions are required to achieve the optimal shade and density.
• Who is tricopigmentation ideal for? If you’re not ready for the long term side of SMP, this is for you. You might prefer to try tricopigmentation first, before committing later to SMP. 
• Tricopigmentation Maintenance: Pigment is created to fade quicker and so top up sessions are required more regularly to keep everything to the required colour and density. 

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Choosing between Permanent SMP and Temporary Tricopigmentation depends on several factors:
• How committed are you? Perhaps you are unsure about how SMP will look after the final session?  How will SMP look as you age? Temporary tricopigmentation offers a less impactful approach. 
• Have you seen your hair falling out gradually over time? If you’re going through ongoing hair loss (going through the different stages of Norwood), the trico option will allow for flexible additions and adjustments to the appearance.
• Lifestyle and Maintenance Preferences: There is minimal downtime in both cases, and thoughts should be given to how often you’d be willing to have adjustments and touch-ups.
• Skin Sensitivity and Health Conditions: All pigments are custom, organic and non-toxic. In extremely rare instances, sensitive skin can react allergically or in a way where the scalp skin is – prior to treatment – already affected by other client health conditions. 

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Ultimately, both SMP and temporary tricopigmentation should always be carried out  by a trained and experienced professional. Expectations and outcomes should be discussed, to ensure the best possible outcome.  A thorough in-person consultation should always be completed before going ahead with treatment.

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1. What is the main difference between Permanent SMP and Temporary Tricopigmentation?

Answer: The main difference lies in how long the treatments last and how regularly treatment has to take place. Permanent SMP uses specialised pigments and that pigment density is longer lasting. Pigmentation will fade after a few years and requires a top up. Temporary Tricopigmentation however, uses biodegradable pigments which are created to fade and disappear within 6 to 18 months.

2. Who is a good candidate for Permanent SMP or Temporary Tricopigmentation?

Answer: If you're experiencing any stage of hair loss such as hair thinning, a receding hairline, bald patches, or complete baldness, you can benefit from either treatment. Choose Permanent SMP for a longer term solution, and temporary Tricopigmentation if you prefer a non-permanent shorter term option.

3. How many sessions are required for each treatment, and how long does each session last?

Answer: Both treatments typically require 3 to 5 sessions to achieve the desired density and natural look. Each session can last from 3 to 5 hours, depending on the size of the scalp area and how complex the treatment. The exact number of sessions and duration varies from person to person.

4. Is either procedure painful?

Answer: The level of discomfort will vary from person to person and the pain is generally minimal for both treatments. Most clients describe the sensation as an uncomfortable pricking feeling at worst scoring pain 3 out of 10.

5. How do I choose between Permanent SMP and Temporary Tricopigmentation?

Answer: A lot depends on your own personal lifestyle. You will have your own preferences, and you may already have a long-term plan to manage your hair loss. Do you want the treatment to be permanent and long lasting for example? Consulting with a professional SMP technician will enable professional personalised advice, treatment and care all based on your current set of circumstances (eg your scalp, your own pattern of baldness as well as your realistic expectations).


Schedule your free, one to one consultation, and ask any questions about SMP for hair replacement in person. At Simon Symeou SMP, we are here to help you get back your hairline, your looks, and your confidence – your happiness comes first. 

With SMP there is another reason not to hide from baldness, and you can rely on a guaranteed solution for your hair loss. 

Our prices are reasonable and competitive, considering the level of expertise we provide. Established in London since 2015, with multiple 5 Star Reviews on Google, we provide an impeccable SMP service, with a leading SMP technician – Simon Symeou – for London and the UK. For reliability, trust and value – you are in the right place with Simon Symeou SMP.

Call us today to schedule your free consultation.

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SMP at Simon Symeou SMP is nothing short of World Class and you will get the best experience from a leading SMP technician!  Throughout our site you will find case studies, video reviews, reviews to read, client before and after pictures. We also have a YouTube channel.

SMP is guaranteed to work – for men and women – so If / when you feel that Scalp Micropigmentation is a fit for you (take your time), reach out to us and book your totally free in-depth SMP consultation. Feel welcome to explore our website and give us a call if you have any questions. (faq).

simon symeou smp
Simon Symeou SMP

24 Crescent West

Hadley Wood, London EN4 0EJ

Scalp Micropigmentation
Since 2015

Originally SMP trained over 7 years ago by one of the best SMP technicians in the world, Simon Symeou consistently proves to be a World Class scalp micropigmentation provider.

Working out of London since 2015. An unwavering commitment to excellence, attention to detail & aftercare. Simon has established himself as a trusted go to expert in his field. Over 7 years performing SMP & prior to that, 15 years as a successful professional tattoo artist.
Has already transformed hairlines and the lives of many hundreds of clients. Simon Symeou SMP is the go-to choice for anyone looking for top-notch SMP services in London.

Simon's dedication to his craft and the positive impact he has had on his clients' self confidence & self-esteem truly set him apart as a standout SMP professional.

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Our Prices

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  • Scar Camouflage - From £500
  • Hairline Restructure - From £1000
  • Standard Procedure - From £2000
  • Standard Procedure with Scar Camouflage - From £3000
  • Alopecia - £Price on Application
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