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Ryan Giggs gets laser-zapping hair transplant after ‘stress’ of playing for Man United made him lose his locks


RYAN Giggs sits for a laser-zapping hair transplant after the “stress” of playing for Man United made him lose his locks.

The Red Devils legend, 46, told how playing top-flight football for 24 years left him going bald.

 Man United legend Ryan Giggs has low-level laser beamed on head to help restore his locks

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Man United legend Ryan Giggs has low-level laser beamed on head to help restore his locksCredit: MHR Clinic
 Giggs’ crown before the effects of procedure kicked in

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Giggs’ crown before the effects of procedure kicked inCredit: MHR Clinic
 The bare patch almost gone two weeks after transplant

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The bare patch almost gone two weeks after transplantCredit: MHR Clinic

And it was old school pals who alerted him to his thinning top — after he celebrated scoring twice against arch-rivals Liverpool at Anfield.

Wales boss Ryan explained how he first cut off his long curls to disguise his hair loss.

He feared playing when it rained because above-pitch TV cameras would highlight the fact he was going thin on top.

Speaking of the match in 2003, Ryan, then 29, said: “We’d won and I was buzzing.

“I walked into the pub later and was expecting to hear ‘Well done’ from my mates and all I got was ‘Flippin’ heck, your barnet’s going’.

“It was a bit of a shock. It was like, ‘cheers lads’. It was one of those.”

Ryan, who played 963 times for United,  said the comments made him begin to worry about losing his hair.

He recalled the moment to staff at MHR Clinic, the hair transplant company he part-owns with former England cricket captain Michael Vaughan and hair restoration expert Craig Henton. He said: “I got a little bit paranoid, especially when I was going to be playing on TV or it was going to rain.

‘FOOTBALL IS STRESSFUL… AND STRESS IS RELATED TO HAIR LOSS’

“I was almost 30 then. At the end of my teens and in my early 20s I had really thick hair, long hair, curls.

“That’s why I started to cut it a bit shorter. I felt the shorter it was, the thicker it looked. It had a big bearing, over the years, on my hair getting shorter and shorter.”

Ryan reckons the pressure of top-level football, coupled with Sir Alex Ferguson’s “hairdryer treatment” when the team played under-par, may have accelerated his hair loss. He explained: “Football is stressful. You put yourself under pressure. You’re aware of the consequences if you lose a game or don’t play well.

“You are under the spotlight and if you have a bad game you’re aware of the criticism.

“Then it becomes a little bit more stressful. And stress is related to hair loss.”

Dad-of-two Ryan first started using lasers, lotions and special shampoos to encourage hair growth after visiting the MHR Clinic in Knutsford, Cheshire, in 2009.

One of the firm’s first customers, he was so impressed with the results he went on to buy a share in the company.

Following seven years of treatments, he felt the hairs on his head needed  “a bit of a push” so booked in for a follicle procedure which was done in December 2017.

He said of his transplant: “It was straightforward and lasted more or less half a day. You can have a rest during it, if you want.

 Ryan started to notice his thick dark curls thinning around the start of his 30s

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Ryan started to notice his thick dark curls thinning around the start of his 30sCredit: MHR Clinic
 Ryan, who played 963 times for United, said the comments by pals watching him play made him begin to worry about losing his hair

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Ryan, who played 963 times for United, said the comments by pals watching him play made him begin to worry about losing his hairCredit: Getty – Contributor
 Ryan, who won 13 Premier League titles with United, bought into the MHR Clinic

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Ryan, who won 13 Premier League titles with United, bought into the MHR ClinicCredit: MHR Clinic

“They numb the areas where you’re going to feel it but you can’t really feel anything.

“The recovery period doesn’t take long. You’ve got, not scarring, but a few cuts in the back of your head.

“There’s a bit of blood on your pillow for a couple of days and then that goes. That’s it. You go back to the consultant. They take a picture of the area the work was done every month and then you can see real progress.

“At three or four months I was thinking, ‘Is that going to be it?’ but Craig, who I’ve known for a long time and trust, told me ‘No there’ll be more, even up to a year’.

“It’s a little after a year when you see the final results.”

Ryan kept the operation under wraps and did not tell his team-mates. He said: “Back then people were judging you more than now.

“I kept a low profile, staying in the house, wearing a cap if I went out. I told friends and family and their reactions were better than I expected. No-one took the Mick or had a joke. They were more inquisitive about what I’d had to do and when I’d get the final results

CELEBRITY CLIENTS AT RYAN’S HAIR LOSS CLINIC

“This is the first time my team-mates will be hearing about it.”

Ryan, who won 13 Premier League titles with United,  bought into the MHR Clinic after Craig invited him to become a partner.

He said: “Craig was hungry to make it work. His knowledge in the industry is second to none. For me, it was a no-brainer.

“The industry was booming. I had someone I could trust and so far it’s gone really well.  I think more and more people are going to have the procedure.”

Referee Mark Clattenburg, 44, Dancing On Ice star Ryan Sidebottom, 42, and BBC weatherman Simon King, 57, have since had hair transplants at Giggs’ clinic.

The business also treats 41-year-old Hollyoaks actor Adam Rickitt’s hair loss with regular low-level laser therapy and medicines.

Ryan, who was made Welsh national team manager in 2018 after winning  64 international caps, has chosen to reveal his treatment now to help break down the stigma surrounding men’s hair treatments.

He said: “I didn’t want to talk about it while I was playing. You have enough pressures as a footballer. If you’re a private person it can be stressful too.

“There’s still a sort of stigma for men but in the last ten or 20 years, it has got better. People understand hair treatments a lot more.

“It used to be just women who had procedures to make themselves feel more confident but now I think it is becoming more and more the same with men.”

Dad-of-two Ryan’s former Man United team-mate Wayne Rooney, 34, was the first high-profile footballer to go public about having a hair transplant in 2011

He posted photos online after his surgery. Ryan, who split from wife Stacey in 2018,  said: “Wayne was very brave in being so open about it. I’m really happy with mine.

“The only negative I have is that I didn’t do it earlier.”

 Dancing On Ice star Ryan Sidebottom, 42, has also undergone the treatment at the clinic

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Dancing On Ice star Ryan Sidebottom, 42, has also undergone the treatment at the clinicCredit: Stones PR
 Referee Mark Clattenburg, 44, has had his hair loss tackled by the treatment

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Referee Mark Clattenburg, 44, has had his hair loss tackled by the treatmentCredit: Getty Images – Getty
 Ryan’s former Man United team-mate Wayne Rooney, 34, was the first high-profile footballer to go public about having a hair transplant in 2011

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Ryan’s former Man United team-mate Wayne Rooney, 34, was the first high-profile footballer to go public about having a hair transplant in 2011

HAIR’S HOW THEY DID IT

RYAN had a Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) transplant.

It saw 1,500 follicles, which contain one to five hairs, taken from the back of his head for transplantation.

A surgeon used tiny blades or fine needles to puncture holes in which to replant the hairs.

They were spaced out and angled to look as natural as possible.

Since his transplant, Ryan has had low level-laser therapy to boost blood circulation and protein production in the scalp. Patients typically have at least two sessions a month.

Club legend Ryan Giggs believes Man Utd need five more players to bring back the glory days





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