A growing number of young Chinese people are anxiously discovering that they are starting to go bald earlier than their parents. A new survey found that the post-90s generation has become an important consumer of wigs and hair transplants.
According to the Chinese National Health Commission, one out of six Chinese people, or about 250 million people, are suffering from hair loss, and more people born in the 1990s with hair-loss problems are experimenting with wigs. Meanwhile, patients between the ages 20 and 30 account for 57.4 percent of the people who have hair transplants, CCTV reported.
Statistics show that from 2016 to 2019, the size of the market for China's hair transplant industry jumped from 5.7 billion yuan ($0.87 billion) to 16.3 billion yuan. In 2020, the market size is expected to break through 20 billion yuan, media reports said.
During this year's “Singles’ Day” shopping festival, men’s hair-loss prevention products entered the top five in the drug sales list, and the order volume for hair transplant services increased by 29 times compared with the same period last year, according to Jingdong Health data.
Huang Chengcheng, who sells wigs and anti-hair loss products on Taobao, told the Global Times on Thursday that she has been selling wigs for five years. Initially the buyers were mainly middle-aged and elderly men, but now the proportion of young consumers has increased from 10 percent to more than 30 percent.
Research shows men are more likely to experience hair loss than women. According to Zhou Cheng, a dermatologist at Peking University People’s Hospital, about 25 percent of men over the age of 20 have some degree of hair loss.
But Huang said young women are more anxious about hair loss and more willing to seek treatment than men. “I have many female clients who showed me their lost hair during pre-sales communication and they asked in detail about the efficacy of each product,” Huang said.
"I keep an eye out for new anti-hair-loss products,” Liu Yuan, a 27-year-old accountant in Beijing, told the Global Times. Living in a busy city with a stressful life and work that causes irregular habits like staying up late has made her start to lose her hair, Liu said.
The phenomenon has also prompted new phrases entering the online lexicon that describe mind-numbing work as “making people go bald.” Some netizens joke that the degree of hair loss among young people represents the degree of regional economic development.