Does Smoking Cause Hair Loss?

When considering factors that might influence hair loss, it is worth examining those that already have known negative health effects. Viewed from that perspective, cigarette smoking – with its proven links to cancer and other respiratory ailments – rates high on the list of potential offenders.

Does Smoking Cause Hair Loss?

A 2020 study compared the prevalence of early-onset androgenetic alopecia (male/female pattern baldness) between 20- to 35-year-old male smokers and nonsmokers. They found 425 out of 500 smokers had some degree of hair loss – compared to 200 out of 500 nonsmokers. Smokers also experienced deeper recession along the hairline compared to the nonsmokers.


While more research on the topic of smoking and hair loss is needed, researchers note strong evidence of a link between nicotine and accelerated hair loss. It is also considered likely that smoking causes oxidative stress and reduces the blood supply to the hair follicles.

Does Vaping Cause Hair Loss?

While more studies are being made, the examination of vaping and its side effects is still in its relative infancy. As a result, there is no solid data on the subject at this point. One data point potentially points to a link – a 2018 report noted significant evidence of a link between vaping and oxidative stress.

How Does Smoking Affect Hair?

Research into links between smoking and hair loss is still ongoing. However, numerous studies have provided significant evidence linking cigarette smoking to a variety of hair-related issues.


Smoking can also affect hair in other ways. A 2013 study linked premature graying (before 30 years of age) to smoking. While another study in 2018 demonstrated that smokers have an elevated risk of complications during hair transplant procedures. In addition, smoking constricts blood flow to the follicles which can lead to brittle hair if the production of collagen is disrupted.

Will Hair Loss From Smoking Grow Back?

If you quit smoking, the body can recover from most of the damage over time. It has already been proven that if you can abstain for 15 years, your chances of stroke or heart attack are the same as a non-smoker. While there is no data related to hair loss yet, the chances seem good… but it will take time.

Concerned About Hair Loss? Contact HairMD to Find the Right Solution for You!

Visit our clinic for a personal consultation and let Dr. Feinberg bring his world-renowned expertise in hair restoration to your case. He will work with you customizing a treatment plan tailored to your individual case. Call our clinic today at 207-739-1885 or contact us online to learn more about how we can help you get on the road toa full and healthy head of hair.