As part of the development of the Men's Resources section of the Alopecia UK website we have created a short film featuring four men with alopecia areata talking about their experiences.

Our short film ‘Men's Chat’ is an opportunity to hear men talking about the highs, the lows, an onion (listen for more) and how they manage their hair loss.

Why did we create the film?

Alopecia UK in collaboration with the Centre of Appearance Research were awarded funding from the VTCTF to help us explore men’s experiences of hair loss and their support needs (You can read more about the project here). Men are often under-represented, both in research and in the media where women’s experiences seem to be shared much more often than men’s. The findings of this project highlighted opportunities for Alopecia UK to develop more support resources for men and increase representation. The funding from the VTCTF allowed us to create the ‘Men's Chat’ short film.

How did we make the film?

We needed to recruit four male volunteers willing to talk on camera about their experiences of having alopecia. We will be honest, this was no small task. Despite a Facebook group with over 11,000 members, mailing lists and other social media, we really struggled to recruit just four men. In discussions with men about whether they would take part, a lot of them told us that they did not want to speak openly about how they felt because they didn’t want to be judged by others. Some said that they hadn’t talked to even their closest family or friends about their alopecia. Yet men really wanted us to create something visual and to hear from others. This made us press on. We wanted men to see other men talking about their experiences and reduce the stigma around this. We are glad we did because we are pleased with the film and the four volunteers did a great job.

The volunteers told us that they got a lot out of making the film themselves because it was a rare opportunity to talk to other men about their hair loss.

What’s next?

We want to continue to create content for men but to do this we really need your input and feedback. What do you want to see us do next? If you want to get in touch to give us feedback or you are interested in sharing your experience to help others (doesn’t need to be on video!) please get in touch with us at [email protected]

We want to thank Tom, Ray, Graeme and Sam for taking part in the film, the VTCTF for funding this film as part of our Men’s Project. Finally we want to thank Will Chalk for his videography skills (Will Chalk).