Can Top Knots Cause Baldness? Here's The Official Doctor's Verdict

Top knots and buns seem like they'll continue to trend hard in 2016, but you may want to reconsider rocking the look every single day. If you haven't stopped to ask yourself, "Can top knots make you bald?" now might be the time. This go-to hairstyle could have some unexpected consequences.

The first person that made me pause over whether or not top knots could lead to baldness in any way is my current roomie, Arielle. She came home totally freaking out about her seemingly receding hairline (I personally didn't notice a difference) and was convinced her top knot was to blame. Allegedly her friend told her that she knew someone that knew someone (yes, one of those stories) that developed a bald spot from too many tight top knots.

This got me wondering, could there be any truth behind the top knot bald spot stories? Turns out, the answer is yes. "Hairstyles that pull the hair very tight can damage the follicle and cause traction alopecia," explains Dr. Hadley King, a New York-based dermatologist. And in less medical terms, traction alopecia means isolated baldness caused by gradual and persistent pulling on roots. Yikes, right?

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to safely wear top knots without developing baldness!

1. Rock Looser Knots

For the days you can't resist a top knot, King advises, "Just make sure that you're not pulling the hair too tight. It's fine to wear your hair up, just keep it a little bit loose." Fortunately, that whole loose messy bun look is ultra chic.

2. Change Your Look Up

Whether you wear your hair down, in low braids, a cute chignon — whatever the 'do — the important thing is to give your top buns and knots a break so the same part of your hair shaft isn't constantly pulled.

3. Choose Safe Hair Ties

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Hair ties with metal clasps can wreck your hair. Resist the urge to use them or rubber bands to wrap up your tresses and always try to opt for non-snagging hair ties instead.

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Images: John Mark Arnold, Brooke Cagle, Ravi Roshan/Unsplash; Courtesy of Brands