By Mikkel Hyldebrandt
Photos: PR

Hollywood’s leading hair and scalp treatment expert, Philip B., was discovered by Vogue magazine when he was a young colorist creating botanical blends for his actress clients – formulas that let them see and feel a dramatic difference in their hair right away. Since then, he’s spun his initial four products into a full range of high-performing hair and scalp treatments with a global following. GOLIATH spoke to Philip B. about how the pandemic has changed how we use and view beauty products. And how isolation has sparked a creative nerve!

First of all, how have you been holding up during this pandemic? I can’t imagine anything stopping you!

Thanks. Socially isolating has been hard! I’m used to traveling nonstop – between California, Europe, and Asia – and I love helping people. I’m always happiest when I’m creating formulas to solve a particular hair or scalp issue, or when I’ve just given someone a hair treatment and see their excitement at the results firsthand. For now, I’ve really thrown myself into innovating new formulas, all plant-based, ethically sourced, and more effective than anything else out there. This whole time has been a reminder of how precious our health is. I feel like finding natural ways to clean and condition our hair and skin without stripping, dehydrating, and aging is more important than ever. 

Have you seen a shift in what people want from a beauty product in light of the pandemic? 

Yes, with all this time at home, people realize that it’s more important to feel healthy than to mask an issue. We’ve seen a growing interest in clean, plant-based formulas; people are more aware of the dangers of parabens, phthalates, and other toxins in their personal care products. And given what a tumultuous, isolating period we’re in, self-care has become paramount. Our clients love that our products not only get results but also create an experience, all through the power of botanicals.

And has this shift affected how you approach developing new products?

Yes, I’m always pushing to find the cleanest, most modern, and ethical way to develop new products. For me, it’s all about finding the right balance of natural healing ingredients and high-tech delivery systems. I want my products to feel and smell wonderful while you’re using them, and for the results to surpass your expectations. My new CBD Scalp & Body Oil has been helping people with skin and scalp disorders, which have arisen from – or been exacerbated by – the stress of living in this pandemic atmosphere we’ve all been immersed in. We’re getting amazing feedback for that product. The new Peppermint & Avocado Scalp Scrub, made with Australian sea salt, arnica, and shea butter, is also deeply therapeutic. It revives your scalp, boosts circulation, and clears blocked follicles to promote the growth of thick, healthy, bouncy hair. As I always say, healthy hair comes from a healthy scalp – and this is a very clean and luxurious way to get there.

At the same time, it’s easier than ever to promote existing products like my Peppermint & Avocado Clarifying & Volumizing Shampoo, Nordic Wood Hair & Body Shampoo, and my Scent of Santa Fe Hair & Body Wash. They’re all herbaceous blends that perform beautifully, leave your scalp tingly-clean, and treat you to a mood-boosting aromatherapy moment. Who doesn’t need that right now, along with a great hair day?

What should we look for when caring for our hair and scalp?

It used to be that you could simply look for pure, active plant-based ingredients at or near the top of a product’s ingredient list. These days, just because an ingredient appears at the top of the list doesn’t mean that it’s active. It’s become common in the industry to dilute plant extracts in water and call that watery blend an extract. It’s something I never do! When in doubt, just smell the product. Your nose should tell you if the formula is filled with pure botanical ingredients at active levels. With my shampoos and conditioners, you’re never in doubt.

Look for gentle conditioning agents like Shea Butter, which revitalize hair without weighing it down. Also, take advantage of the latest, cutting-edge hair-care technologies. My Forever Shine Shampoo, for instance, is made with natural safflower nanosomes – tiny spheres filled with weightless botanical conditioning agents that release over time. So your hair just gets shinier and bouncier and healthier as the days go by. 

Anything you’d like to add?

This pandemic has been an interesting experience. As a formulator, it’s driven me to create even more supremely effective and unique products, all designed to give anyone their best hair ever – and bring them joy!

Philip B.’s favorites for healthier hair – available at philipb.com