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Tag Archives : trichologist

A Special Tribute To Philip Kingsley

On Tuesday I learned that world famous Trichologist, Philip Kingsley, had passed away. I met Mr. Kingsley over three years ago in East Hampton. I was 6 months away from launching Travel Beauty and was not only keen on carrying his iconic hair care line (at the time you would have been hard pressed to find his line in The US) but have him sit on Travel Beauty’s panel of experts.

My First Encounter With Philip Kingsley

I still remember vividly picking up the phone to cold call Mr. Kingsley to ask him for a meeting. I was so nervous, heart pounding and hands clammy, the phone virtually slipping out of my hands. As the phone rang – my heart was in my throat. By some miracle I was invited to meet him at his home in East Hampton. I couldn’t believe that I was actually going to meet Philip Kingsley. Growing up in New York City in a building where many famous celebrities were my neighbors, I have never been one to be star struck, but I was in Mr. Kingsley’s case. I also had the pleasure of meeting his lovely wife Joan and daughter Anabel. Philip Kingsley was such an inspiring man. There are times when we cross paths with people that make an impression and Philip Kingsley did.

We sat down in the living room and he recounted stories about how Laurence Olivier had come to see him. Apparently a lesser known player in The Royal Shakespeare Company had visited Mr. Kingsley who was able to help him with his hair and scalp issues. Laurence heard about Philip and went to see him as well. The rest of The Royal Shakespeare Company followed soon after. “I remember one chap” he said, “he had no hair left, so there was nothing I could do for him, you see.” He joked “I don’t like to waste anyone’s time, if I can’t help someone I tell them straight away and if there is no hair left, there is nothing I can do to help, I’m afraid”

A Tale of Ducks

Philip Kingsley was a great storyteller. Every product in his line had a magical story behind it. He told me about Audrey Hepburn, The US Olympic Synchronized Swimming Team and ducks – yes ducks! Let’s start with the ducks. Kingsley painted a picture: “Fall was turning into winter and I was in the country and noticed a number of ducks at the foot of a pond…” Their feathers were healthy and glistening and I thought, let me find out what gives their feathers such sheen – their feathers were always so healthy looking despite the bitter cold and constant immersion in water. Kingsley was onto something. He conducted some research and discovered that there was an element in duck feathers that promoted shine and luster. Using this knowledge he formulated Preen Cream for the purpose of infusing life back into dry, dull hair. This was my favorite story.

A Bespoke Formulation For Audrey Hepburn

Then there was Audrey – Elasticizer had been devised expressly for Audrey Hepburn. Her hair had been so over processed from coiffing on film sets that it had become exceedingly brittle and dry to the point of breakage. Audrey went to visit Philip and he created Elasticizer for her to address her severe brand of hair fry. Today Elasticizer is an iconic hair hero and one of the most important fixtures in my shower.

Kingsley’s Passion For His Work

Kingsley truly cared for his patients and wanted to communicate just how important his work was to him. It was as if he was trying to impart upon me the feeling of joy and passion that he felt for the people he cared for, his field of Trichology and product development.  After 50 years of practicing, he still loved what he did and was in a constant state of wonder and fascination. This is a common trait that I have observed in so many successful individuals over the years. It does not matter how hard one works, if he or she does not love the work, it is difficult to become successful, however one defines success.

Here is a round-up of some of the wonderful editorial pieces that Mr. Kingsley kindly authored for Travel Beauty over the years. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to know and collaborate with him.

Vacation Hair Care: Sand and Slopes

There is very little difference between caring for your hair at the beach and while skiing. In each instance your hair is subjected to similar environmental hazards. For example, windy conditions, the sun, sweat, salt or chlorinated pool/sauna water, even hats—be they large rimmed sun hats or snug & wooly ski attire. The primary consideration is protection from all of these elements, of which I will describe below: Read more.

Summer Hair Myths Debunked

Having practiced trichology for over 50 years, I have heard a fair few misconceptions about hair in my consultation rooms, ranging from the misguided to the downright absurd. I thought I would share the more common ones, and, as we are in the height of summer, they shall be summer themed, too! Read more.

Minimizing Static Hair and Hat Hair

Three amazing phenomena of hair (and I could name many!) are its electrical properties, insulation potential and ability to change shape with the addition of heat and/or water. Sadly, however, these also mean the occurrence of static flyaways and horrendously frustrating hat hair. No one is immune, but from my many years of experience, both personally and from helping my clients, I have accumulated useful methods of minimizing their occurrence. Read more.

By: Alyssa Barrie Weiss, Twitter: @AlyssaBarrie

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Beauty Benefits of Preventative Care

Travel Beauty recently interviewed renowned New York City Dermatologist, Dr. Mitchell Kline. When asked what younger women in their 20s and early 30s can do in the way of preventative care, Dr. Kline replied:

Underappreciated is the benefit of rest, diet and supplements that truly affect the way the skin ages and damages. The science is astounding and soon will become part of prevention rather than treating problems that develop.

Old Is New

The movement towards prevention as a mode to protect against illness has been prevalent in this country for some time. As a society, through media coverage and increasingly public policy, we are educating ourselves to eat healthier, exercise more often and even decrease the stress levels in our daily lives. While to many, this notion sounds so basic, it is something that has not yet seeped into the American psyche with relation to skin and personal care.

American Attitudes Towards Personal Care

Typically Americans wait until they see signs of aging, sunspots, blemishes or develop a skin condition, like rosacea to become serious about a skin care routine. Similarly, they wait until they experience hair loss or have serious dandruff issues to establish healthy hair care habits. Even more prevalent - women typically start using body firming lotions and scrubs after they give birth or are presenting with cellulite. Perhaps you’ve heard that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”? All I have to say is #TRUTH.

A 360 Degree Approach to Beauty

In Europe the approach to personal care is different. Europeans appreciate skin for what it is – the largest organ of the human body – and an important one at that. It is the only protection our bodies have from the elements. All that stands between our blood, veins, internal organs and tissue and the outside world is skin.

This approach not only includes eating right, getting enough rest, taking supplements and regular facial treatments but using quality skin care products early on. Effective ones that prevent the type of skin damage that results from pollution, climate and aging, before we start to see the effects in the form of wrinkles, fine lines and sunspots.

A Lifelong Obsession With Beauty

I became interested in personal care products at a young age. I traveled with my mother frequently overseas and the most anticipated stop of the trip was the charming, local European pharmacies.

My earliest product memories star Erno Laszlo’s Sea Mud Soap – revolutionary when it first hit the scene - My mother had all sorts of serums and potions in lovely glass jars stored on an elegant, old world sit down vanity. It was so glamorous.

My mother also always used body lotion. This annoyed me as it took her, what seemed like a year, to get dressed. When I asked her why she insisted on this long drawn ritual (we once missed a bus that ultimately crashed because she was running so late – THANK YOU BODY LOTION) – she said the only reason she didn’t look like an old bag is because she’d been using body lotion her entire life and if I didn’t want to look fat and saggy skinned I better think about doing the same. My mother is not one to hold back.

Forming Healthy Habits Early On

I started having regular extraction facials when I was 12. When I think facial, I don’t conjure a picture of lounging in a robe, cucumber water in hand. In fact, many spas of lesser quality play up this piece of the experience to makeup for the mediocre quality of their treatments. Not to say that you should be having a facial in a dingy back alley. It should be a lovely, tranquil place but the most important part is a knowledgeable, experienced aesthetician that works closely with dermatologists and plastic surgeons, understands product and is not a one treatment fits all practitioner. Facials should be akin to clinical treatments – parts of which can be painful – hello extraction! They can be likened to teeth cleanings. You have your teeth cleaned at least every six months to prevent tooth and gum decay. So to, regular facials keep your skin in check. Yasmine Djerradine is the only person that I trust with my skin.

To that end, here are some exceptional products that approach personal care through a preventative lens. They are not only extremely effective but are aimed at keeping skin and hair healthy. If you have healthy skin and hair, they will look great and these products are the proof.

Skin Care That Works At The Cellular Level

Sapelo Skin Care, a revolutionary, all natural line from Savannah, Georgia combines high concentrations of plant extracts, indigenous to the region, with powerful, scientifically proven peptides that nurture the skin at the cellular level turning back the hands of time. These products protect the skin from the elements and are formulated without harsh retinoids and acids. Sapelo is ideal for sensitive, dry and/or mature skin. This is an anti-aging skin care line bar-none. My mother is 67 and since she started using this line 6 months ago, has never looked better. Her skin looks like she has a microcurrent facial daily.

What About Sunspots?

The foundation of protection is applying a product that counteracts the body’s chemical reaction to Ultra Violet radiation or sun exposure. Sapelo Skin Care’s Rejuvenating Cream contains anti-oxidants and platinum peptides, biochemically designed to halt UV injury before sunspots occur. The system was designed to replicate the skin’s healing response to injury. If used twice a day, Sapelo works 24/7, at the cellular level, to stop UV damage – which causes ugly brown spots.

Skin Care With Ayurvedic Roots

Cosmetics 27 by M.E. SkinLab leverages the restorative nature of Centella Asiatica extracts, a plant that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for more than 3,000 years to strengthen the skin’s ability, at the cellular level, to fight the factors that cause it to look old and dull, on its own. Michèle Evrard, the founder of Cosmetics 27, is a pharmacist by training and has worked in product development for years. She approaches beauty in a holistic manner also offering a nutritional supplement, Supplément 27, to be used in conjunction with her skin care line. It contains active anti-oxidant and anti-free radical ingredients, Centella Asiatica, Vitamin A, C and E and Selenium which combat cellular aging, reinforcing the skin’s natural defenses while providing the skin with the elements it needs to regain its beauty and radiance. It visibly reduces the signs of age and helps maintain the skin’s natural equilibrium and beauty from the inside out.

Preventative Hair Care

World renowned hair and scalp Trichologist, Philip Kingsley takes a similar approach. At his clinics in London and New York City, Kingsley’s team runs a full blood work up, examines eating habits and digs into clients’ daily routines to determine the types of stress they might be facing. Believe it or not, all of these factors impact the condition of the hair and scalp. Once you have been examined, Kingsley’s team, or if you are lucky enough to see Kingsley himself, devise a custom treatment of products just for you – that really work.

If you can’t make it to the clinic, Kingsley has formulated a retail line that addresses different hair and scalp concerns from dandruff, to thinning hair, to serious frizz.

Holistic Body Care

Mio Skincare is an all natural body care line designed to work in conjunction with regular exercise and healthy eating habits. Products like the Workout Wonder Invigorating Muscle Motivating Gel contains ingredients like Arnica Montana to sooth and bring down the swelling that overworked muscles may experience due to intense workouts. The A Cream creates a soothing shield to combat dryness and boost elasticity, fighting the damaging effects of sun, pollutants and free radicals. It balances, deeply moisturizes and strengthens skin. These happen to be skin firming products but the truth is, the earlier you start moisturizing your body, the more supple it will be.

So that next time someone asks you if any of your products really work or do you just have great genes, you can confidently say, I am sure my genes do play a part, but I take care of myself and that makes all the difference.

By: Alyssa Barrie Weiss, Twitter: @AlyssaBarrie

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How to Prevent an Itchy, Flaky Scalp This Winter

Every winter I receive a flurry of questions relating to dandruff. While the colder months have their many charms, ‘tis also the season for flakes and itching. Luckily there are many effective methods of combatting this common annoyance; from changes in your diet and lifestyle to the use of targeted products. In turn, looking after your scalp in such a way will improve the general health of your hair – a happy scalp goes a long way to promoting happy hair days.

The Science

Dandruff usually occurs when a yeast naturally found on the scalp (called malassezia furfur) overgrows. This causes skin cells to replicate themselves much more rapidly than they should, resulting in tell-tale flakes and itching. Most of us will experience dandruff at some point. The scalp is sensitive to external as well as internal changes, such as a shift in seasons, a change in diet, rocketing stress levels and fluctuating hormones.

Culprit: Diet

Certain foods are known to worsen an itchy and flaky scalp. Not everyone’s mind you – what may upset your scalp may be fine for someone else. However, at our Clinics in London and New York we have found that full fat dairy products, very spicy or sugary foods and white wine and champagne are the worst offenders – basically all the decadent things in life! Some people find that just one piece of cheese or a glass of their favourite Sancerre can flare-up symptoms. If you are prone to dandruff, try finding your trigger foods and drinks by process of elimination. Let us thank our lucky socks red wine and spirits are not on the list…

Culprit: Stress

Stress can upset the delicate balance of scalp flora. We aren’t entirely sure of the exact mechanism, but it’s probably because stress can increase male hormone levels, which in turn can affect the scalp. Stress may also play havoc on the immune system. Regardless, the most effective way to combat stress-related dandruff is to find an effective way to manage stress levels. At our Clinics we suggest mindfulness, meditation, Pilates, getting enough sleep and doing low-intensity exercise a few times a week.

Culprit: Not Shampooing 

Flakes aren’t always ‘true dandruff’. They can also make their debut when you aren’t cleansing your scalp often enough. After two days of not shampooing, dead skin cells simply accumulate on the scalp, become visible and irritate the skin. To prevent this problem, try to wash your hair at least every other day. If you simply cannot do this, which I know is often the case for those with coarse or curly hair, use an exfoliating scalp mask once a week and an antimicrobial scalp toner every morning and evening.

Culprit: Scratching

Scratching an itchy scalp can set off a vicious cycle. You scratch; the scalp gets more irritated and itches even more. You scratch again – and on it goes. Anytime you feel the urge, reach for a soothing anti-microbial scalp toner and dab it onto affected areas. We make a hand-bag friendly scalp toner called Flaky/Itchy Scalp Toner.

Product Cures 

You should use a targeted shampoo and scalp toner every day and an exfoliating scalp mask twice weekly until symptoms clear. Then reduce to every other day with the shampoo and toner for another 10 days.

When to See a Doctor 

Dandruff is a non-inflammatory scalp condition. If your scalp is red, bleeding or inflamed or your flakes are very thick and hard to remove you may have another scalp condition and should see your doctor, trichologist or dermatologist for treatment.

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Blow Drying & The Beautiful Blowout

Though some members of the Travel Beauty team have sworn off blow dryers, we know such a stance is not a viable option for everyone. Blow dryers have become an indispensable styling tool to women (and men) everywhere. We here at Travel Beauty would certainly never underestimate the positive effects of a beautiful blowout! Unfortunately, constant blow drying can damage hair, making it look less beautiful over time. What to do, what to do?!

We asked legendary Trichologist and Travel Beauty Expert Philip Kingsley for his sage advice on blow dryer best practices so we can style as safely as possible. You’ll be surprised to hear his stance on blow dry styling! Read on…

Q: Should blow dryers be eliminated from my hair routine?

A: Definitely not! The blow dryer is an excellent tool to help style the hair in the way that is most pleasing. Hair is deeply psychological and a hairstyle you are happy with is a great morale booster.

The poor blow dryer has been unfairly blamed for many hair problems: hair loss, dry hair, breaking hair, dull hair…just to name a few. However, with correct use, the blow dryer does no damage at all. It should be held a minimum of 9 inches away from the hair, and as the hair dries, the heat should be reduced until the hair is just dried – not longer. Damage occurs when the dryer is kept on after the hair has dried. This will result in the moisture content of the hair cells being depleted – and can lead to breakage and dullness. You can also help protect your hair with a heat protective conditioning spray, like Daily Damage Defence. (If the dryer damage is already done, weekly deep conditioning treatments with Elasticizer will go a long way in restoring hair health.)

Furthermore, it’s important to remember that the styling brush you use can do a great deal of damage. I have seen many cases where excessive pulling of the hair and scratching of the scalp has resulted in mass hair breakage and traction hair loss, as well as a sore (and sometimes damaged) scalp. In terms of the hair, it is technically dead tissue once grown, and therefore does not regenerate itself once damaged like the cells of your skin do. Hair needs to be treated with consideration! Careful use of both brush and blow dryer will give you happy hair days!

Hungry for more expert hair and scalp care tips and advice? Visit Philip’s expert page on Travel Beauty. (His daughter, Anabel Kingsley is a Travel Beauty expert too!) You can also check out Travel Beauty’s full collection of Philip Kingsley products, including shampoos, conditioners, scalp treatments and styling products.

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Expert Hair & Scalp Products & Treatments: Promote Healthy Hair & Fight Hair Loss at the Philip Kinglsey Trichological Institute

Certain physical attributes can significantly elevate a person’s appearance. Say you were not blessed with modelesque bone structure. There are several other features (skin, brows, teeth…) the optimization of which (clear & glowing skin, well-shaped brows, straight, white teeth…) can still land you firmly in “10″ territory. Probably the most notable of these features is hair. Shiny, bouncy, Breck-girl hair makes a world of difference on anyone. As a low-maintenance gal, I relied on my high-quality (read: expensive) hair cut and color to compensate for the makeup I didn’t bother applying, the accessories I didn’t bother wearing, etc. Imagine my despair, then, when I realized my hair was falling out at an alarming rate. It was devastating and stressful…not to mention embarrassing.

Hair Loss & Thinning

Why? Why, oh, why was this happening to me? Well, the body considers hair a “non-essential” tissue, so the brain will not send nourishment to it if requirements elsewhere in the body are not being met. This can result in hair loss and/or thinning, as well as dry, brittle and lifeless hair. Additionally, (unfortunately) hair loss in women is a more complex problem than it is in men because of all the different factors at work:

  • Diet
  • Stress level
  • Genetic predisposition
  • Hormones

Poor Diet & High Stress Levels

I was struggling on all these fronts. Simultaneously completing my MBA, working part time and caring for my two young children had led to me often neglecting the most basic self-care. My diet was awful: I grabbed food on the go, never paying attention to eating a well-balanced diet. My stress levels were sky high and sleep was but a stranger. Although I felt run down and depleted, I also felt too busy to do much about it.

The Last Straw

My attitude quickly changed once my hair started to fill my shower drain…every day. Is that my scalp I see in the mirror?!?! My body was alerting me that the status-quo was not working, and I could no longer not deal with it. On top of my hair shedding, my scalp suddenly became extremely dry and flaky for the first time in my life. So now my suddenly visible scalp had become quite unsightly. It was clearly time to take action. I proceeded to purchase every scalp and hair loss product under the sun, from Apple Cider Vinegar to Zinc supplements. Still, I was not seeing any real results. Time for another tactic.

I Took The First Step

I made an appointment at The Philip Kingsley Trichological Institute in New York City, knowing that they specialize in hair and scalp health. The Institute is a hidden gem of hair health, tucked away in midtown Manhattan. It is not a spa or a flashy full-service salon; it is a no-frills hair and scalp treatment center. I was comforted by the straightforward professionalism and “clinical” setting; I knew they were going to go beyond scalp deep to deal with my issues. My visit was two-part. First, I met with trichologist Elizabeth Cunnane-Philips. This was an in-depth interview, just shy of a therapy session. Liz conducted a thorough investigation into my life, asking about:

  • Overall health
  • Family history
  • Diet/nutrition
  • Lifestyle

Her expertise and depth of knowledge were immediately apparent. Though she was a consummate professional and listened matter-of-factly to all I said, there was an air of compassion to our meeting which I really appreciated. When she asked me (rhetorically) where the protein was in my diet (surprise…there wasn’t any), it wasn’t a judgment, but a dose of tough love. Philip Kingsley takes a holistic approach to hair and scalp issues, treating the underlying causes as well as the appearance your hair/scalp. My diet was my biggest issue – woefully deficient in protein. And iron. And breakfast. To discover what else may be amiss (thyroid problems, deficiencies, etc.), Liz recommended a comprehensive series of blood tests, the results of which I would report back to her.

The Examination

She then examined my hair and scalp under a large magnifying glass. My scalp was inflamed, flaky and altogether unhappy. An inflamed scalp can often go hand-in-hand with hair loss, and can lead to even more hair loss if left untreated. Based on what she observed, Liz wrote up a personalized product list to be used during my treatment – the second part of my visit.

The Treatment

For my treatment, I met with another trichologist, Stephen Pullan. Where Liz was tough love, Stephen was kid gloves. His healing hands put the “treat” in treatment. After expertly applying an exfoliating scalp mask (to remove “debris” from my scalp), Stephen started squeezing a bottle of white goop onto my hair. He said it was Elasticizer diluted with water to make it easier to apply. Brilliant- I learned a new trick! My hour-long treatment included a divine 10 minute head and neck massage from Stephen, as well as time under a scalp steamer: Just like the helmet dryers used in salons, but with STEAM! I can’t begin to describe how soothing and restorative it felt. After steaming, I was put under infrared lamps, then shampooed and rinsed.


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