The Mirror Effect: Combining 2-D and 3-D Hairlines in Hair Restoration
One of the original ideas that I have been working on is why and how to use a mirror when designing a hairline. What I am always shocked by is that I will look at a patient and draw in a proposed hairline then look at the hairline with the patient in the mirror to behold that the hairline looks completely tilted and asymmetrical. I stopped having embarrassment now by having the patient close his eyes until I make the necessary adjustments. Now, why would hairline look straight when viewed from in front of the patient but completely different when standing behind the patient and looking together with him at a mirror? That is the question that I will attempt to be answer in this article.
Mirror use for hairline design
I truly believe the major reason for this skewing of the line from naked eye to the mirror is due to the irregular and asymmetric shape of the head that people have. What looks reasonably straight in a three-dimensional world becomes skewed when flattened in a two-dimensional mirror. It is then important to adjust the line to accommodate for this scalp asymmetry. In fact, I will go back and forth between three-dimensional view and two-dimensional view until I find that both look good. Remember it is ok to have a hairline that is not 100% straight since sometimes this can look done but it should be about 98% straight.
The mirror is also great in flattening out a line that appears more complicated three-dimensionally, providing instant feedback on the shape of the line’s symmetry. I tend to draw a quick hairline in the position and shape that I want then immediately go to the mirror to adjust any perceived problems. I then go back to stand in front of the patient to make additional adjustments and continue to do this until everything looks good. It is very important to ensure that things are correct in the mirror because this is how you, the patient, will be seeing yourself and this is also how the hairline will be photographed. But the three-dimensional view is how others will see your hairline in reality. Therefore, it is very important to get the mirror and the non-mirror views of the hairline correct.
Samuel M. Lam, MD, FACS, a board certified hair transplant surgeon in Dallas, Texas. Please visit these links to learn more about Dr Lam’s hair line design and hair transplant procedures.. If you would like to schedule a consultation please call 1-888-866-3388, or visit hairtx.com for more info.