As you may already know, as of September 2020 we officially became a Sustainable Salon! Yay! And since then, we’ve completely rebranded & changed our salons practices to follow our green journey. So for this post, we thought it would be interesting to share with you what being a Sustainable Salon actually means, as well as all of the awesome things the Sustainable Salons team do.
So, Why Did We Become A Sustainable Salon?
Becoming a Sustainable Salon was a very exciting and well-awaited change for us, aligning with our personal beliefs & values. We believe it is important for us to do what we can with what we have, for the survival of our future generations and planet. Not long after our transition, we completely rebranded our salon, dedicated to an eco-friendly life & an ever-growing greener future. You can read more about ‘Why We Rebranded’ here on our previous blog.
So, What Does It Mean To Be A Recognised Sustainable Salon?
Being a recognised Sustainable Salon means we recycle up to 95% of our waste. This includes all hair, paper, metals, plastics, chemicals & broken tools (e-waste). We seperate these into their individually labelled bins, so then each fortnight the Sustainable Salons team pick up our waste & take it back to their warehouse, where they seperate it further & distribute accordingly.
Each of the waste types are sold to different companies to be repurposed and kept out of landfill, with all of the profits donated to OzHarvest & KiwiHarvest to feed struggling families & individuals.
How Is Each Waste Type Recycled?
Each of the waste types are repurposed into different things, with the Sustainable Salons team constantly researching & working on new innovative ways to recycle our waste. There are currently eight research projects underway with universities and organisations to find repurposing solutions for salon materials.
In saying this, the team have created a unique system that circulates our waste, keeping it away from landfill. This is how our current waste is recycled:
As a hair salon there is never a shortage of excess hair! It is our most common waste along with foil (for our blondes and balayage clients). And the coolest part is that none of it goes to landfill! Our hair waste from the salon is recycled & turned into what the Sustainable Salons team call “hair booms”.
Booms are stockings filled with hair that are used to soak up oil spills on our land & in our oceans. Did you know there were 86 oil spills along the Queensland coast alone between 2014 to 2015?! And so far, Sustainable Salons have collected 28 700kg of hair that can soak up to 95 800L of oil! So at your next hair cut appointment, you can leave the salon feeling good knowing that your hair is going to good use & helping save the planet.
Another amazing thing about Sustainable Salons is that they also take hair donations! They have collected 90 000+ donated ponytails that are up-cycled into wigs for those suffering with cancer or alopecia. You can read more about how hair donations work & how you can donate your hair here on our previous blog post.
All of our paper & cardboard waste is recycled and created into new paper products. So far they have recycled 193 700kg of paper, and the numbers keep growing!
Metals such as our foil, colour tubes & any other general products are diverted from landfill and repurposed into new aluminium packaging, joining the already 188 600kg that has been recycled.
There are a few ways our plastics are recycled, with our soft plastics (and some hard plastics) transported to the award-winning facility Plastic Forests (based in Victoria). This company transforms our plastics into underground cable covers, landscape supplies & product packaging.
Other hard plastics that are eligible for the supermarket “Return & Earn” service are recycled, with the 10c refund of each item forwarded directly to OzHarvest & KiwiHarvest.
This means 143 200kg of plastic has been kept in circulation, with the number growing everyday!
Any extra colour waste or chemicals used in salon are emptied into our colour bin, which is then recycled back into water and used in construction and manufacturing. So far, 29 600L of chemicals have been recycled!
And even better is that we use O&M’s Clean Colour! Their colour is Ammonia, PPD & Resorcinol free, keeping harsh chemicals away and protecting us humans, our wildlife & the planet.
We also use Zero Co cleaning products which are palm oil-free, vegan & cruelty-free, greywater safe, low allergen, petrochemical free, SLS/SLES/Paraben/EDTA free and made in Australia. They skip the need of using single-use plastics with there refilling cycle. Learn more about Zero Co here.
E-Waste (Broken Tools)
Any broken tools are also repurposed, adding to the already 2250kg kept in circulation! Preventing harmful toxins leaching into the environment.
All of the proceeds gained from our recycled waste is then donated to OzHarvest & KiwiHarvest to feed the hungry. Every $1 donated is equivalent to 2 meals, and so far, 118 000 meals have been donated!
Another amazing thing about Sustainable Salons is that they have created 61 local jobs across both Australia and New Zealand, supporting 23 employees with disabilities with purposeful work.
What This Means For Our Clients
To be able to continue this amazing sustainable cycle, for each service there is a small $2 fee to cover the costs & help save the planet! Heres what the $2 sustainable fee covers:
- 40% Resource collection & redirection
- 25% Implementing green practices
- 20% Supporting the community
- 10% Researching recycling solutions
- 5% Awareness and education
So you can trust that your $2 is going to good use, saving people & the environment!
Small Change = Big Impact
Here at Blanc we believe it’s about doing what you can in your power to help make a difference. It’s about everyone coming together and making small sustainable changes that will help save our beautiful planet.
We are always open to new ways to reduce our footprint, and would love to know the changes you’ve made in your home &/or work life! So be sure to send any cool new ideas through to us on our Facebook or Instagram.
Until next time! The Blanc Girls x