Despite the ongoing call for sustainability across the beauty industry, the salon sector has been slightly slower to innovate. After all, how much eco-friendly change can be made to its existing format? Most customers want to sit back, relax, and leave the salon with luscious locks, paying little mind to the environmental impact of their visit. According to a statistic published by Simply Organic, the North American salon industry produces 421,206 pounds of waste every day, resulting in 150 million pounds annually.
Brands like Bleach London previously removed all single-use plastics from their bleach kits in 2019 so that at-home dye jobs would be greener. However, with forward-thinking innovation taking place in the haircare category, it seems it’s time to turn to salons and find out what they can do to minimize their negative impact on the planet. In order to spotlight salon improvements for the planet, BeautyMatter has compiled a roundup of ethically minded hairstyling destinations.
With the idea that “making people more beautiful shouldn’t make the world less beautiful,” Brooklyn-based Fiona Hair NYC prioritizes leaving a minimal carbon footprint and holds the title of a certified Green Circle Salon. The Green Circle Salon initiative ensures that hair, foils, color tubes, plastics, papers, and chemicals used within the salon are diverted from landfills and water systems, and instead are recycled or repurposed. This means 90 to 95 percent of Fiona Hair NYC salon’s waste is recycled. The salon even provides customers with the option to have organic color dye upon request, truly living up to its description as an “eco salon.”
“L.A.’s first full-service green hair salon” aims to provide superb salon services by creating a toxin-free space, “meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet theirs.” The salon puts its words into practice by ensuring everything―from the paint on the walls to the LED lights, insulation, and products used on clients―is carefully evaluated to have the least impact on the planet’s resources. Nori’s Eco Salon’s credentials include the Cool California Climate Leader Award, as well as being 360 Biocert Organic certified.
With salons in Camden, East London, and Leicester, Butchers’ aim is to “enhance confidence and wellness” in guests “in an environment of conscious living, equality, and kindness.” Focusing on customer care, the salon provides free drinks, gender-neutral pricing, and relaxing head and neck massages in a bid not only to prioritize the wellness of a customer's hair but the wellness of a customer's mind. Wherever possible, the salon spaces are built out of raw, reclaimed, and recycled materials. Butchers believes in partnering with brands that carry the same ethical principles as it does; for example, its only color product supplier is Aveda, which received Leaping Bunny approval through Cruelty Free International in 2022. Butchers is keen to spread its message and expand its salons across the UK.
Based in the heart of London, GA Salons is committed to healthy, organic, and environmentally sustainable haircare and hair coloring. One way the salon achieves this is by not using chemicals, parabens, synthetic fragrances, carcinogens, nanoparticles, or animal testing in its products and services. The salon believes in moving away from chemical hair treatments that weaken hair over time and result in high-maintenance upkeep. GA Salons creates dyes and treatments by hand, in the salon, “using only herbs and fresh ingredients.” The salon says its “sole aim is to guide clients on a journey of rediscovering their natural beauty.”
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