Meet Alpha, the Insta-Famous Dog With a Diligent Beauty Routine
Here at skincare.com, we have the chance to interview a lot of really cool people: celebrities like John Legend, top dermatologists like Dr. Ellen Marmur and skin-care influencers like Morgan Brown. Obviously, these people are killing it in the beauty space, but we were also recently introduced to a pup named Alpha who is right up there in terms of beauty goals. Alpha, for some background, is a two-year-old mini red and white Alaskan Klee Kai who also dubbs himself an “elite urban explorer.” After scrolling through his adorable Instagram account full of his street style looks, worldly adventures and some hints at his beauty routine, we knew we had to reach out to learn more.
Ahead, learn more about Alpha from his human, Mei Lui, including the canine’s beauty routine, best grooming tips and some of his favorite products.
Tell us about Alpha!
Alpha’s only about 13 inches tall and 18 lbs of fluff and muscle, but he's got a buoyant and happy-go-lucky personality that is larger than life. Nothing keeps him down and he's always ready for the next adventure, be it a long walk to a new park or traveling to another city. My friends and I call him "baby wolf" because he's regal and energetic like a wolf, but in a much more compact package.
How would you describe Alpha's beauty aesthetic?
Alpha tries to maintain a healthy balance between pampered prince and the dog next door; his fur is always perfectly fluffed and he never leaves the house without a bow tie or a bandana, but he refuses to wear any other accessories, clothes and shoes. He has standards, but he's no beauty king!
Can you give us some insight into Alpha's beauty routine?
Alpha enjoys having his teeth brushed and his nose and paws massaged with some all-natural dog balm on a daily basis. Every other day, he also gets a nice half an hour of coat brushing to keep his luxurious double coat fluffy and free of loose fur. It's impossible to stay perfectly clean in New York City though, especially when it rains or after frequenting dusty dog parks. On those days, I use Kiehl's Cuddly-Coat Grooming Shampoo and Cuddly-Coat Grooming Rinse. I wet his whole body, use the shampoo to get him squeaky clean, then apply the rinse for a minute for some deep-conditioning. The shampoo lathers nicely and helps get all the dirt and grime out of his fur, and the rinse keeps his fur feeling soft and looking shiny. After a quick blow-drying session, his fur fluffs up with a ton of volume — like he stepped out of a shampoo commercial.
How does the Kiehl's Grooming Shampoo appear to make Alpha feel?
While Alpha doesn’t necessarily enjoy getting his fur wet in the bath (he's self-conscious about looking like a tiny wet weasel), he does love having shampoo lathered in his coat. He almost always starts falling asleep while it's being worked in!
As Alpha's owner, do you personally like using Kiehl's Cuddly-Coat Grooming Shampoo? Why?
I love Kiehl's Cuddly-Coat Grooming Shampoo because it smells amazing, the pump bottle is easy to use compared to squeeze bottles, and it leaves Alpha's coat super soft and fragrant. Some dog shampoos smell good right out of the bottle but then have a weird "after smell" once they’re actually applied to the dog's fur. The Kiehl's shampoo smells good throughout.
What's a day in the life of Alpha like?
Every day is an adventure for the baby wolf. We start off slowly getting ready for our day with some stretches and breakfast, and on weekdays we take a long walk to either my office or his dog sitter. Regardless of where he ends up, he always spends a few hours playing with his friends, taking naps and getting attention from everyone he can make eye contact with. On weekends, we head up to Central Park for a long leisurely stroll through the Rambles, stop by a dog park for him to socialize, take a few pictures for his 'gram, and then settle in for a long afternoon nap before heading out again for a sunset walk by the East River.
Does Alpha have any other grooming tips or product picks besides Kiehl's Grooming Shampoo?
Alpha swears by the Furminator Puppy slicker brush, which he's used ever since he was a wee 5-month old pup to reduce the amount of fur that is shed all over the house and to manage the chaos during the two times a year that he blows out his coat. He also recommends the Natural Dog Company's Snout Soother and Paw Soother balms to keep noses and paw pads from being too dry — a common occurrence for outdoorsy dogs like him that are always out and about being exposed to drying winter winds or extreme heat and walking on concrete.
So if you haven’t already, go follow Alpha at @littlealpha.bigcity on Instagram — he’ll be waiting.
Photography by Mei Lui