By Danielle Kirk
When I first started looking for ways to reduce my plastic impact I knew the basics and then did a lot of research into other ways to make a change. What I didn’t think would happen though is that an eco-friendly solution would find me. Enter the sustainable salon.
A sustainable salon is a hair salon that is committed to reducing waste from their business going to landfill. This can be disposable products like foil and plastic bottles, chemicals from hair dye, or even the hair itself. Participating salons are part of a social enterprise started by hairdressers called Sustainable Salons that aim at supporting the community. Right now 95% of salon resources can be diverted from landfill and waterways.
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This week if you have been following me on Social media you will have seen me chop my locks! I donated my hair to @sustainablesalonsanz to have a wig made and I also started an everyday hero campaign to raise money for @hmriaustralia 👆 There is a link in my profile if you want to help me raise money. . . This weekend I’ll be updating the shop with extra pieces and next Saturday I’m back at the Olive Tree Market for the last big market of the year on Sat 15th Dec. . I’ll be making a donation from the sales from both stall/shop. You can too via my link in my bio @oscarandmatilda 👆👆👆 . . So nows the time to make a purchase and help me raise some $$money for medical research so we can #kickcancersbutt #letsdothis . . . . . #cutmyhair #girlfriends #girlssupportgirls #womenrock #ladybosses #ladyboss #theolivetreemarket #etsyshop #olivetreemarket #oscarandmatilda #newcastlehandmade #statementearrings #dogoodthings #fuckcancer #imadeyourearrings #womensupportwomen #christmasgifts #handmade #earrings #wahm #ladystartup #earringobsession #earringparty #dogood #womenempowerment #dangleearrings #madeinnewcastle
How they do this is through a 360 approach. There are specific bins installed in the salon that collect reusable and recyclable materials that are picked up fortnightly. They collect chemicals such as peroxide and dispose of it properly so it doesn’t pollute waterways. The salons also collect hair clippings and give them to charities that make wigs if they’re long enough, or organisations that use hair to soak up oil spills in the ocean (hair is great for this!). All metal is collected and recycled too, from the foil used to dye hair to hairspray containers. Paper and plastic used in the salon and offices are also recycled with diligence.
It gets even better because 100% of the profits made from recycling materials goes to charities like OzHarvest and KiwiHarvest (yep, sustainable salons are in Australia and New Zealand). This closes the loop and saves the planet while also giving back to local communities.
So now that you know your next haircut can have a positive impact on the planet, how do you find one of these sustainable salons? The best part for me is I didn’t have to go looking for one, turns out I was already going to one! My local hairdresser (shout out to Mietta’s salon in Bondi Junction, Sydney) were the ones who started educating me about this while I was getting a wash and blowdry. I noticed a little sign on their mirror saying my hair would be used again and when I asked to know more they handed me a little book that explained everything. You can find your nearest sustainable salon by using their directory here.
Danielle Kirk is a travel addict, fashionista and zero waste enthusiast. When she isn't getting lost hiking in NSW's Royal National Park or researching zero waste hacks you'll find her cuddled up with a book and her cat, Xander. But it doesn't stop there she's also the founder of April to August.