A man who spent £7,500 on a hair transplant to boost his receding hair says he is now mistaken for Tinder love rat Swindler Simon Leviev. Dan Smith said fans of the Netflix series are convinced he’s the real deal.
He could see the funny side. jokingly, “To be fair, he has a really nice hairline”. Dan’s sudden fame came as a huge surprise, having battled male pattern hair loss for a long time since his early twenties.
The 37-year-old sales manager says he’s still not used to being the center of attention, let alone looking like a TV celebrity, reports the Mirror. Dan’s hair loss began at age 21 and steadily worsened, leading him to wake up to find his pillows covered in hair.
He said: “It started to make me very paranoid. I noticed that I was starting to look a lot older than I was. I started to develop an obvious bald spot in the middle of my head and nothing would cover it.
“I spent a fortune on useless hair growth pills and miracle creams hoping they would help me, but they didn’t. I felt pretty depressed and just wanted to feel more confident again.”
After much research, Dan decided to undergo an expensive hair transplant procedure, hoping to regain the youthful hair he had lost. He said he spent years thinking about it after the hair treatments he had wasted “so much money” on had no effect.
He came across Dr Fas Arshad, who runs The Hair Dr – Hair Transplant Clinic in Leeds, after searching online. Dan underwent his hair transplant in December 2020 – just months before the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
In March 2021, he was starting to see results from his hair transplant and then transformed his lifestyle after noticing he was starting to put on weight. And about a year after his hair transplant, Dan’s boss noted that he had started to look a lot like the infamous “Tinder Swindler” made popular by the Netflix documentary.
He said: “At first I dismissed it as a one off comment; a bit of a joke. But then other people started making similar comparisons. Once I was arrested four times a day on the street for pictures – people really thought I was him.
“It’s always funny when they realize their mistake. I think I look a bit like Simon Leviev, and I find it funny. To be fair, Simon Leviev has a really nice hairline, so I don’t mind the comparisons in this regard.
Since the procedure, Dan says his overall confidence has improved and he likes the results of his hair transplant. He is no longer aware of his appearance and feels much more confident in himself.
Dr Arshad, who performed Dan’s operation, added: “Hair is intrinsically linked to a person’s self-confidence, so the impact of hair loss in men or other forms of alopecia is seriously underestimated in my opinion I often see once patients have a hair transplant it leads to other health improvements especially mental health which is great to see and something.”
How Hair Transplants Work
Dr Arshad said: “Dan’s story is not uncommon. Male pattern baldness is a very common condition that can affect up to 85% of men after a certain age. Usually, the clear signs of hair loss in men begin around the age of 50, but for some it can start as early as their late teens or early twenties.
“Male pattern baldness tends to develop slowly and can take several years before you notice it visually. Visual signs of male pattern baldness include a receding hairline, thinning hair, or significant accelerated hair loss.”
“One of the most popular and effective treatment methods for hair loss in men is hair transplantation. This procedure works by surgically removing hair follicles from a part of the scalp, known as the name “donor site” to a bald or bald part of the scalp called the “recipient site”.
“The procedure is minimally invasive and can also be used to restore eyelashes, eyebrows, beard hair and to fill in scars. Prospective candidates should keep in mind that the process does not create new hair but rather redistributes existing hair, and therefore there must be enough hair to be transplanted for the procedure to be successful.
“I’m very open and transparent with my patients about this, so they understand the entire procedure before having it.”