When his daughter Emma was 1 year old, Philippe Morgese became a single dad.
Like most in his position, he suddenly realized there was a lot he needed to learn when it came to raising a daughter on his own. One aspect that was definitely not included in any parenting guidebooks? How to style his daughter’s hair.
So Philippe did what any dad would do: he tried his best and started out small with simple hair clips. From there, he branched out to pigtails and braids. Eventually he became so adept, he would receive compliments from friends and strangers alike on how great Emma’s hair looked.
It was then that Philippe realized that if he had struggled to learn how to style his daughter’s hair, surely tons of other dads would be going through the same thing and would benefit from his knowledge.
After hosting his first “Dads and Daughters” hair class at a local beauty school — and seeing what a success it was — Philippe knew he was on to something. So he took to Reddit and posted photos of his class, hoping to inspire other dads. But what he didn’t expect? That he would become an instant Internet sensation overnight, with millions sharing his post and dozens of major news outlets covering the story.
The messages he received touched his heart and highlighted the importance of what he was doing. And at the time, everyone at Babble couldn’t help but be inspired, too. We wrote about Philippe’s story and thought about ways we could work together to help parents everywhere. We then invited him and Emma out to our Disney campus in Glendale, CA and asked them to help us create simple hair tutorials on everything from the basics of detangling to more intricate hair styles like a rope braid.
Babble editor Megan Sayers worked with Philippe and Emma and was in awe of the bond the two shared:
“Just getting to watch Phil and Emma together was such a heartwarming experience. Here is a dad, doing the best he can, and trying to help other dads along the way. It was obvious from the minute we met that Phil is entirely devoted to his daughter, and that he’s raising her to be a strong, confident, kind person. He talked candidly about the challenges he faces as a single parent — but made sure to remind me several times that it’s not work, it’s just him being a father, doing what any father should. Which is why I’m so excited to help share his story on a larger platform, and hopefully help more parents in his position.”
Philippe, too, hopes his videos will help inspire others to branch out from their hair comfort zones as well as take the opportunity to further bond with their children:
“I think seeing a dad and daughter work together like we do is inspiring to dads and I hope to influence others to build that bond with their girls. Doing hair is just a small portion of our time together, but it is very close and involved. That time we spend together is where we discuss our day, talk about important issues, and crack jokes. … I created the class to help a few dads and it ended up helping many many more! I feel like I’m blessed with an opportunity to help and I’m thankful that everyone is so supportive.”
And for those who are looking to start at the beginning (like the very beginning), make sure to check out Philippe and Emma’s tutorial on how to detangle hair:
For more Dad Hair School tutorials, visit Babble’s YouTube page.