‘Community’ Star Joel McHale Needed 3 Hair Transplant Surgeries to Feel Like Himself: ‘I’d Be Totally Bald’

Staying relevant in Hollywood leads many actors to undergo beauty treatments and cosmetic surgery. The pressure to look great even as you age is monumental. Nose surgeries, teeth capping, botox, and more are all standard practices for the Hollywood elite. Hair is another source of scrutiny. Women spend large sums on blowouts, cuts, color, and extensions.

Men’s hair is not talked about as frequently, but the pressure is still present. Many Hollywood men try treatments, including hair transplants, to maintain their youthful looks. Hiding treatments are common, but Community star Joel McHale has decided to open up about having multiple hair transplant surgeries to achieve his lush locks. 

Joel McHale smiling in front of a gray background
Joel McHale | Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images

Bad hairpieces and transplants

Although hair transplants are more common, there is still a slight taboo regarding receiving the procedure. Some hair transplants like Tom Brady’s are artfully performed so that it’s hardly noticeable. Other celebrities are not so lucky. For example, Donald Trump’s hair has been under scrutiny for years. There are many theories as to what Trump has done to his hair. Is it a comb-over? Is it a toupee, or are his locks the product of hair transplants?

Other big celebrities have had hair transplant nightmares. Elton John described his experience with transplants as incredibly painful, with the end result making him look like something out of a horror movie. Yet not everyone who undergoes treatment for hair restoration regrets the decision.

Joel McHale wrestled his insecurities

RELATED: Before ‘Community’ Fame, Joel McHale Backed Up 2 Super Bowl-Winning Tight Ends in College

Most people recognize McHale, whether from his tenure hosting The Soup or his time acting on the hit sitcom Community. Perhaps it was the time he spent on The Soup ridiculing everyone in popular culture. Maybe it is industry pressure. Whatever the reason, McHale feels the need to take care of his physical appearance. He is an avid gym-goer and recounts his gym experience saying, “I go in there thinking I’m in shape, and then I go in, and I’m like, ‘Ooh, I am not in shape. I need to work harder,'” according to MetroWeekly.

The 43-year-old actor’s fitness level is not the only physical attribute he has admitted to having insecurities about. There has been a lot of gossip and speculation surrounding McHale’s hair. For a long time, he chose not to address the rumors, which only added more fuel to the fire.

Coming clean and advice to others

After years of dodging questions about his hair, McHale finally came clean. During a podcast (available on Wondery) with Justin Long, he admitted that he indeed had had not one but three hair transplant surgeries. The 43-year old told Long, “Yeah! I’d be totally bald. We’re not all born with gorgeous thick hair like you … ” Long proceeded to ask McHale when he began to lose his hair and what made him decide to do something about it. McHale explained, “Oh, 18, 19 [years old] … When I started The Soup, I look at some of the promo photos and I’m like, ‘Oh yeah.’ Maybe I’ve gone overboard and this really shows my midlife crisis but my theory is that I’m never going to die and it’s a good theory.”

McHale is pleased with the results of his surgeries. He bragged, “three surgeries later, look at my hair! The technology is bananas now. They pluck your hair and stick it there.”  Of course, he does warn others looking at getting the procedure done that picking the right surgeon is imperative. He remembers talking with his surgeon about fixing botched surgeries, “The guy who did mine, he’s like, ‘Oh, I spend a lot of time fixing crappy surgeries where they go to different countries and it’s a third of the cost.’ Luckily for the young actor, he finds his outcome completely satisfactory. Overall he says, “I’m Joel McHale for hair transplants.”