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Q & A

Here are some of the commonly asked questions we've received over the years.
We've organized them by category so you can easily find answers.



ISSUE: Superdry Hair

December 7, 2010 | African-American Hair, Dry Hair

Dear Philip,

I’m and African-American female and have worn my hair in an Afro ever since 2001, when my doctor diagnosed me with scarring alopecia. My hair is very, very dry and extremely hard to comb. I have tried Pantene, Nexus and other shampoos and conditioners, but nothing, absolutely nothing has made my hair soft and manageable like it was before my diagnosis. Can you recommend which of your shampoos, conditioner and something to apply to my scalp to keep my hair from remaining dry?

I’m so sorry to hear about your struggles. When hair is as dry as yours, you need to use a power-packed hydrator – something that will impart into your hair and strengthen it from the inside out. The best thing would be regular Rejuvenating Oil treatments, which will help to soften and repair your hair. If your hair still feels dry, rub a little oil between your palms and scrunch it into your hair when you get out of the shower. And when you order the oil, ask for some samples of our Russian Amber Imperial Shampoo and Conditioner. I think they’d be amazingly helpful, too.

ISSUE: Dry Scalp and Hair Loss

September 21, 2009 | African-American Hair, Color-Treated Hair, Damaged Hair, Dry Hair

Dear Philip,

I’m an African-American woman with chemically-treated hair. My hair feels dry all the time, and my scalp itches in the center. I’m constantly rubbing it to stop the itching, and as a result, I have a lot of breakage and my hair is falling out. What type of regiment do you recommend?

You can’t believe how often I see this situation – I’m so sorry to hear of your struggles. The good news is that I have the perfect remedy. It involves three steps:

  1. Coat your hair with my Rejuvenating Oil and work it into your scalp to loosen any dead cells and flaky patches. Let it sit for 20 minutes or so.
  2. Put a dollop of the Peppermint & Avocado Clarifying & Volumizing Shampoo on your hair, work it into a lather and let IT sit for 2-3 minutes. You’ll feel your scalp tingling as the therapeutic levels of peppermint oil in the formula do their healing work. Rinse.
  3. Immediately apply the Anti-Flake Relief Shampoo, work it into a lather, and let IT sit for another 2-3 minutes. Rinse thoroughly.

If you like, you run some conditioner through the ends of your hair, or apply a leave-in conditioner – avoiding your scalp. Repeat the 3 steps as needed. You should see a huge improvement in your scalp and your hair within a week.

ISSUE: My Hair is One Big, Dry, Frizzy Mess

September 21, 2009 | African-American Hair, Curly Hair, Dry Hair, Thick Hair

Dear Philip,

I’m so unhappy with my hair. People tell me all the time that I have lovely thick, curly hair; that they (women) would love to have it; and I should love and appreciate it. But I don’t. I have very, very thick Afro/Caribbean hair with tight curls and a lot of volume – when it dries, it starts to pouf out. I’m 27 and have rarely worn my hair down: My confidence suffers and I always end up putting it back up. I’ve spent lots of money on products that don’t work.

It sounds silly and people always tell me, “It’s just hair and there’s more to life,” but I feel like I have to do something about it. The only time I like my hair is when I’ve just stepped out of the shower or when I’ve just had it styled and the volume isn’t big and my curls fall long and loose. But once it dries, it expands and you can’t see the lovely curls – just one big, dry, frizzy mess. I don’t want to keep battling with my hair. Can you recommend the right products and give me some tips?

Absolutely. Hair like yours is tricky, but with a little know-how and the right products, you really CAN learn to love it, I promise. Let’s start by giving you a new hair-care mantra: Moisturize constantly. That means not shampooing your hair often – once a week, tops – and building moisture into every step of your regimen.

  1. Start with a Rejuvenating Oil treatment. Saturate your hair with the oil, apply heat, and leave it in for an hour (or all night).
  2. Follow with a gentle shampoo, like the African Shea Butter or White Truffle shampoo and follow with the Light-Weight Deep Conditioning Crème Rinse (Classic or Paraben Free) and Katira Hair Masque. Leave the Katira on your hair for an hour or so until it dries completely (it should feel hard and helmet-like). Then rinse.
  3. When you get out of the shower, pat your hair dry (no rubbing), spritz on a bit of the pH Restorative Detangling Toning Mist, which will help seal the cuticle of your hair and ward off frizz.
  4. Next, mix a dollop of Lovin’ Leave-In Conditioner with a drop or two of Anti-Frizz Formula 57 and run the mixture through your hair. Comb it through, shape your hair with your fingers and then DON’T TOUCH IT. AT ALL. (Every time you handle your hair, you rough up the cuticle and encourage frizz, so a strict hands-off policy is crucial.)
  5. To style your hair between shampoos, just smooth some more Lovin’ Leave-in Conditioner over the surface. And try to go easy on the heat styling. The more moisture and pampering you give hair like yours, the more gorgeous it will look.
  6. Use the Rejuvenating Oil and Katira Hair Masque regularly – every time you shampoo, if you can. Your hair will love you and vice versa!

ISSUE: Chemically-Straightened, Colored Hair – REBORN!

September 21, 2009 | Accolades, African-American Hair, Color-Treated Hair, Dry Hair, Where to Buy

Dear Philip,

Through my Lucky magazine I learned of your products and just went to Blue Mercury in Philly to buy the Anti-Flake Shampoo and the Anti-Frizz Formula 57. I’m a black woman with chemically straightened hair that’s also colored. Plus, I’ve suffered from dry, itchy, flaky scalp for a few years now. I just put in a couple of drops of your Rejuvenating Oil in my hair this morning and my hair is frizz-free and I didn’t even have to use my curling iron! I love that! Listen, if just one of your products is so amazing then I can’t wait to use the other products and buy more. I believe that my hair products will be solely Philip B. Botanicals. I even plan on buying the Russian Amber Shampoo. I don’t care what my husband says! Once he feels the softness and notices the growth and shine, he will beg me to use it. Hey, you know what they say: “Happy wife, happy life!” Thanks, Philip B. So, when are you going to open a salon in Philly?

Thank You for writing in — your message cheered me immensely. You sound very cool and I’m thrilled that the products are helping you. I also have some great news: One of our all-time favorite Philip B. experts, Ross Poole, will offer our professional treatments at Bean’s Beauty in Philadelphia, starting in mid-October. We’re so happy that he’s bringing his love of Philip B. products to you and the City of Brotherly Love!

ISSUE: Unruly Texture

June 26, 2009 | African-American Hair, Dry Hair

Dear Philip,

I’m a Caucasian woman but have been told that the texture of my hair is that of an ethnic woman. It’s so coarse and poufy that I have to straighten it all the time. And I wear it up a lot because I don’t have a lot of time to do anything with it. Please help!!

Easy: Once or twice a week, use a Four-Step Treatment to soften and silken your hair, followed by the Katira Masque to make it extra-manageable and soft. On a daily basis, use the African Shea Butter or White Truffle Shampoo and Conditioner. They’ll restore weight and moisture to your hair, leaving it shiny, bouncy and smooth. With coarse, poufy hair, moisture is the name of the game.

ISSUE: Curly/Kinky Hair Fix

June 26, 2009 | African-American Hair, Color-Treated Hair, Curly Hair, Dry Hair

Dear Philip,

I’m curious to know what kind of conditioner I need for my curly/kinky hair. I’m African-American and I have usually fragile hair and a sensitive scalp – I can only use peroxide-free hair color and I sometimes get rashes from very strong products. Since ends of my hair are very dry and break off, I have to have a shorter style, but would love a little more length.

The Rejuvenating Oil would be so healing for fragile hair like yours; so would the Katira Masque and White Truffle Nourishing & Conditioning Crème. (Bonus: The extra-gentle formulas won’t aggravate your sensitive scalp.) As for cleansing, I suggest our number-one bestselling shampoo: African Shea Butter. It will restore your hair’s elasticity and much-needed moisture like that.

ISSUE: Author, Author

June 2, 2009 | African-American Hair, Color-Treated Hair, Curly Hair, Damaged Hair, Dry Hair, Fine & Limp Hair, Hair Masque, Special Cases, Thin Hair

Dear Philip,

Is Philip B. going to write any more books?

Funny you asked: I’m thinking about doing a book or a TV show and am gathering material. Please let me know if there are any particular subjects you want me to address!

ISSUE: Dry Hair & Daily Workouts

June 2, 2009 | African-American Hair, Dry Hair, Fine & Limp Hair

Dear Philip,

I’ve been using your products for a month now and I am astonished by the results. My hair is supple, shiny and moisturized. I’m an African American woman and my hair is chemically relaxed, very dry and fine. I’ve been washing my hair twice a week, once with the 4-Step Hair & Scalp Treatment followed by the Katira Masque; and once with the Russian Amber Imperial Shampoo, also followed by the Katira Mask. The issue I now have is that I exercise 5 times a week and I am a serious sweater. I need to wash my hair but it takes a lot of time to follow this routine. Any products I could use that I could use daily and quickly after I hit the gym?

I’m so happy with the program you’ve chosen — it sounds perfect for your hair type — and proud of your dedication. It’s terrific to hear that you’re getting such awesome results. Since your hair is dry and chemically treated, I’d recommend using a super-gentle shampoo like the African Shea Butter, White Truffle or Russian Amber Imperial Shampoo after your workouts. (Focus on washing your scalp and just let the lather float through the ends of your hair.) Or, if you have an easy gym day, simply rinse your hair and apply some conditioner to the ends. That should keep it feeling fresh — and as healthy as the rest of you!

ISSUE: Thin, Fine Ethnic Hair

March 15, 2009 | African-American Hair, Curly Hair, Fine & Limp Hair, Thin Hair

Dear Philip,

What products are best for my thin, fine, curly, black hair? I’ve been using Samy Big Curls Curl Defining Creme. It works pretty well, but I’m over 50 now and would like more volume and curl definition.

It’s not always about the finishing product. Your situation is a case in point: Volume and defined curls start at the roots and with the condition of the hair itself. First, please give it a strong foundation with weekly deep conditioning – a Rejuvenating Oil treatment followed by the Katira Masque. That combination will make all the difference. And finish your hair by putting a leave-in conditioning cream like Lovin’ Leave-In on the ends. Alternately, try Anti-Frizz Formula 57: Rub 2-3 pumps of it between your palms, work it through wet hair, and let it air-dry. Your curls will look soft, bouncy and shiny – in other words, naturally gorgeous.

ISSUE: Black Hair – Relaxed or Natural

March 15, 2009 | African-American Hair, Special Cases

Dear Philip,

I’d just like to know if your products work well on black hair – relaxed or natural?

Good news: All of my treatments are designed – first and foremost – to nurture and heal, so they’re ideal for black hair. In fact, I get thank-you letters from women of color from around the world. Ethnic hair tends to be very fragile, coarse and porous, so it needs that much more TLC. Treatments with the Rejuvenating Oil and Katira Masque are a must; the African Shea Butter or White Truffle shampoos and conditioners will make a perfect complement. (The Russian Amber Imperial Shampoo would be wonderful, too, especially if you have ultra-delicate hair that’s been relaxed and needs some restructuring.) All of these products are superhydrating and nourishing, so they’ll give your hair back its naturally healthy shine and bounce.

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