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Meet Philip Wolff

Today we’d like to introduce you to Philip Wolff.

Philip, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My mother did hair and makeup growing up so getting my haircut by her was normal for me. I never really went to a salon or barbershop except twice in my life (both on the same day when my mom went away to visit family for a few weeks and I was with my dad) That’s a whole other story in of itself lol. So after trying basically everything else job-wise, I decided to try hair. I found in the local (MD, DC, VA area) classified ads an apprenticeship opening. I ultimately got the job despite my inexperience in the beauty industry, not even beauty school. I was able to get my credit through the apprenticeship program. I quickly realized education was the key to the evolution of this hair world. After a year, I moved to a different company. A chain of salons with in house education combined with constant outside education. I became part of the education team and was a sponge for years. I then wanted more so I moved to the west coast, LA to be exact.

I was humbled right away. Totally different way of doing things, totally different culture. I worked seven days a week for years and years combining a few days at this salon, few at that shop, etc., freelance, etc. I eventually partnered up at a salon in Beverly Hills and several years after that decided to go back to my roots of education, that was almost ten years ago now. I guess I never gave up on the one thing that was taught to me early on… staying involved with ongoing education. Without that, I would definitely not be where I am today which is why I am so passionate about it and why I share what I know to anyone who wants it.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It was definitely not a smooth road. As a matter of fact, it was the exact opposite. The struggles included countless failures which later I realized were just stepping stones and were just learning curves to get to where I am now. It was all practice, experience, and knowledge… all to eventually pass on of course. Some included coming to crossroads where I had to choose which way to go. Some self-chosen, some forced upon me. Either way, I stayed true to my core beliefs which are not going for the quick dollar. Doing things with respect and dignity even if it was the longer route and staying true to myself. Was it easy? No. Was I tempted to go another way? Of course, but again out of experience before that, I knew where that led. Knowing that until death, this journey keeps going. There really is no end until there’s an end if that makes sense. I’ll never get to a point where I say, “I made it”… why? Because there’s always more to learn, more to experience, more to share and more to be accomplished. Not to say I won’t have gratitude for the goals I have achieved, I just mean you never really retire from a true passion.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
My business consists of an accumulation of things. I suppose my business is myself, my brand. I am a hairstylist who works behind the chair, I am an ambassador for a few different brands, I make products and sell them, I design things, I consult, I create curriculum, and teach. I’m known for education and hair cutting. I’m proud to be a part of an industry that is really booming globally right now. I’m proud of being a part of something that not only supersedes language, racial culture, gender or borders, but and industry that simply alters others in such a positive way. When you can make someone truly smile, it’s priceless. I’m not quite sure what sets me apart from others. Perception is subjective, I just do what I like.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
My favorite memory from childhood would… gosh, I really don’t know however that’s a great question. I remember when I was about eight years old my dad teaching me about the whole slow and steady wins the race metaphor and I actually did it and won a race and how proud he was of me. That felt good, I’ll never forget that day.

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