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Nicotine, a psychoactive drug used to stimulate brain activity, is also found in tobacco-containing products such as cigarettes and cigars. It is known that there is no safe level for the use of this product which is considered an addictive substance. Therefore, smoking is also an addiction and it needs to be treated. Tobacco contains tar along with nicotine, and when tobacco is burned, a poisonous gas such as carbon monoxide is released. The gas in question causes damage to the lungs and can even be fatal if inhaled for a long time. So, in which cases does nicotine cause hair loss? What are the harms to hair health other than hair loss?

Effects of Nicotine on Hair Loss

It is largely known that smoking increases the risk of lung cancer and respiratory diseases. However, the negative effects of smoking are not limited to the lungs.

Studies have shown that the smoke produced by burning tobacco contains more than 7,000 chemicals and 69 of them directly increase the risk of cancer. If the chemicals involved are inhaled, they can travel to the respiratory system and from there to other parts of the body. Therefore, its negative effects concern all organs and parts of the body.

Among the lesser-known side effects of smoking is hair loss. Although the exact cause of this situation is not known, it is estimated that there are different factors behind the issue.


How Does Nicotine Cause Hair Loss?

There is a direct relationship between nicotine and hair loss. This information may cause some confusion at first. You can be increasingly surprised even more by examining the details below.

  • Nicotine Gum: Nicotine gum, which is known to negatively affect blood circulation, can cause hair damage in the form of premature baldness. It should be noted that premature baldness is irreversible.
  • Exposure: External exposure to nicotine can cause significant damage to hair follicles and trigger hair loss.
  • Excessive Oil: When nicotine gums are chewed, they trigger excessive oil secretion, which can damage the hair and cause hair loss.
  • DHT Secretion: Due to nicotine consumption, the androgen levels may increase and thus the level of DHT in the blood may increase. Permanent hair loss may occur with the increase of DHT level.
  • Deterioration in pH Level: Disruptions in the pH balance of the hair may occur due to nicotine. The acidity of the scalp will increase the risk of hair loss.
  • Harmful Chemicals: The combined effect of nicotine and other harmful chemicals can lead to a much higher risk of hair loss.

These are the main reasons about the risks of nicotine. Excess of everything is harmful, and too much of nicotine is harmful. The relationship between nicotine and hair loss is a well-known situation today. Well, does nicotine only cause hair loss, or does it also prevent new hair from growing?

Read Also: The Effect of Alcohol and Smoking on Hair Transplantation


Does It Also Stop Hair Growth?

The fact that nicotine is associated with permanent baldness raises the possibility of preventing hair growth. According to a study, smokers have a higher risk of going bald than non-smokers. The nicotine and other harmful chemicals in cigarettes increase the risk of hair diseases that stop growing.

It would not be wrong to say that this substance, which changes the pH level of the hair, will also negatively affect the growth of the hair.

It is stated that the blood pressure in the scalp is adversely affected by nicotine and causes clots in the veins. These effects are the main causes of hair growth and hair loss.


Other Damages of Nicotine to Hair Health

Smoking, which increases the risk of hair loss, also has different damages in terms of hair health. These can be summarized as follows:

Damages of Nicotine to Hair

Weak Hair Transplantation

Studies show that smokers have a higher risk of experiencing complications such as skin tissue death on the scalp during hair transplantation.

Gray Hair

It has been reported that there is a relationship between graying of hair before the age of 30 and smoking.

Fragile Hair

The slowing of the blood flow to the follicles due to smoking may impair the production of collagen and accordingly the hair might become more fragile.

Dry Hair

After the age of 45 to 50, the tendency to decrease in hair oil is evident. Cigarette-induced oxidative stress can potentially accelerate hair aging. It can cause dryness in the hair at an earlier age.


Ways to Get Rid of Hair Loss Caused by Nicotine Before It’s Too Late

The relationship between nicotine and hair loss can be reversed at the right time and with the right methods. In other words, it is not impossible to eliminate the negative effects at a certain level. Since nicotine is generally taken from products such as cigarettes, hookahs and tobacco gum, these habits should be abandoned first.  Then the following methods can be applied:


Iron is a nutritional supplement of great importance. Iron deficiency can occur due to smoking. Taking iron supplements will positively affect the hair. However, it should be taken into account that too much iron intake can be harmful and cause poisoning. Therefore, iron supplements should be taken under the control of a specialist doctor.

Uçucu Yağlar

Different essential oils can be used to stimulate hair growth. These oils can be massaged into the scalp. With the effect of massage and oils, the vessels in the scalp are positively affected and the blood flow begins to improve. Thus, the follicles will be nurtured better.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E, which is also heavily involved in hair care products, supports hair growth. Vitamin E supplements are very successful in promoting hair growth.


Proteins, which are an important part of the hair as well as the whole body, have an active role in the elimination of hair damage caused by smoking.

Many nutrients found in fruits and vegetables have similarly positive effects. However, it should not be forgotten that the first and most important step in this process is to quit nicotine intake. It is therefore necessary to enroll in a smoking cessation program and to abandon friendships and habits that lead you to smoke.

The damage caused by nicotine can only be reversed to a certain extent. So there is no such thing as completely removing the damage. Therefore, a non-smoking and nicotine-free lifestyle should be adopted before permanent damage occurs.

Read Also: Why You Shouldn’t Use Alcohol and Smoke After Hair Transplantation?


Ways to Quit Smoking and Other Nicotine Products

Quit Smoking

Yes, quitting smoking is not easy. However, when you achieve this, you will see that it has many positive effects on both your general health and your hair health.

An experienced doctor will give you the necessary advice to go through this process easily. Other ways to quit smoking and other nicotine products are as follows:

Prescripted Drugs

Medications prescribed for quitting smoking and other nicotine products will be helpful. These drugs, which will be prescribed by your doctor, will significantly relieve withdrawal symptoms.

Nicotine Replacement Theory

Nicotine patches and chewing gum can be used to gradually reduce the amount of nicotine consumed. However, it should be noted that their use should be reduced over time. Thus, withdrawal symptoms will also be significantly reduced.


Quitting smoking is not easy. In this process, those who have extreme difficulties can receive therapy with counseling or support groups. In addition, alternative therapies can give effective results in breaking the habits about smoking. Different methods such as hypnosis and acupuncture can be evaluated in this class.

Avoiding Smoking

In the process of quitting smoking, it will be beneficial to stay away from smoking environments and not to spend too much time with smokers. Such methods significantly reduce the withdrawal symptoms during the smoking cessation process and contribute to a more comfortable process for you..



When you inhale tobacco, nicotine and other chemicals can spread first to your lungs and then to your whole body. Thus, their negative effects can be seen not only in your lungs, but also in almost every part of your body and in your hair.

Smoking can cause hair loss in different ways, such as negatively affecting the blood flow to the hair follicles and damaging the DNA of the follicles.

Quitting smoking will not only eliminate these negative effects, but also allow you to achieve limited hair growth.


Plan A Consultation

For hair loss caused by smoking or a different reason, COSMETICIUM plans special treatments for you.

Dr. Caglar and Dr. Batu - Cosmeticium

With effective treatments such as PRP, hair follicles are supported and hair loss is stopped and hair growth is encouraged. For permanent hair loss, hair transplantation is performed using the most modern techniques and you can regain your old appearance. You can use our free online consultation service to discuss your situation clearly with our specialist doctors. For this you can fill out the form below.


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