Have you heard about Green Salon Collective? Of course you have! But do you know what they are really about? The hairdressing industry is waking up to the fact that it is contributing to the climate crisis, and Green Salon Collective has ideas on how we can stop some if not all of the harm we do.
Find out more!
The past year, aside from an online-education fest for hairdressers at all standards, and 24/7 Instagram Lives with major talented people (which we love, of course), a start-up company called Green Salon Collective has launched. It is your ticket to helping tackle waste in our industry.
Green Salon Collective – let’s use GSC for speed – has what they describe as ‘circular disposal solutions for everything from hair to plastic to PPE.’ Hair is a particularly interesting one since it is the focal point of salons but probably the least thought about as a waste stream. There are so many ways hair can be put to work after it is cut, snipped or clipped from clients’ heads, and GSC ensures that it does indeed get put to good use (repurposed as compost or made into hair booms for example).
But tackling salon waste is only one side of the coin. Hairdressing should also be following such waste streams upriver, to find ways to minimise what your salon is throwing away to begin with. Your efforts will be rewarded with more than that warm, gooey feeling of having done the right thing. You will undoubtedly also be rewarded with savings for your business.
Back to the beginning
Here’s a place to start: Chemicals. For any number of reasons, not all of the chemicals you stock up on for colouring and treatments are ever used and so you consistently spend money on product that ends up in the bin. Yep, trashed, wasted, totally not used!One good option is investing in software that accurately tracks colour usage. There are clever management systems (eg by Vish or Precision Colour) available for stylists to easily track actual usage in order to more accurately predict amounts needed for future treatments. It might seem like a bit of an expense but Tom Bentley-Taylor at Vish, explains: “UK salons typically waste 20-40% of colour. This is waste left in the bowl and doesn’t include over-application which is really waste left on the head. When you take this into account the percentage is much higher.”
This is really a two-birds-one-stone solution. Employing the software can reduce what your salon spends on product, and what it must pay to dispose of its waste, ie in this case chemicals and metal tubes. Well, maybe that’s a three-birds scenario if you count reducing your environmental impact!
Green Salon Collective is a hub of information to support you. It offers a membership system which not only helps you set up a regime for managing waste – including individual bins for different kinds of waste and a collection service – but it has published loads of educational material. GSC helps you better understand your waste streams. A special Green Bible is issued to all members, too, explaining how to tackle waste at source and to find creative ways to save the planet and a penny! There’s much more to tell. We urge you to check them out! The environment has no time to go to waste…
Words: Stephanie Hodgson from MeetthefiveRs.com with visuals also courtesy of @meetthefivers #zerowastesalons
Looking for some more colour inspiration? Here you go: