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One of the main motivators for our Research and Development work is to make the hair and beauty industry reach its fullest potential. By investigating key areas that are seldom properly explored, we can enhance knowledge, help our members become more sustainable and push for industry-wide change. The reports below result from months of work and research that have been turned into easy-to-digest reports for anyone to access, learn from and take action on.
We worked with Professor Baden on a 12 month study to explore ways to reduce individual carbon and water footprints related to haircare routines. In particular, looked at the effectiveness of mirror talkers - small messages on hairdresser mirrors - for engaging clients in conversations around sustainable haircare.
We have witnessed rising uncertainty and concern in the hair and beauty industry with disposable towels becoming a recurring question both during our accreditation process as well as in everyday conversations with our members. Consequently, we have decided to conduct an objective study comparing the environmental (and financial) costs of disposable and reusable salon towels.
We currently send the majority of salon hair waste to our composting partner and so far we have only received positive feedback from them. Commercial composting is heavily regulated and batches of the final product are regularly sent to approved labs for testing. It is clear that composting is a great and safe outcome for hair. But as we are set to serve more and more salons in the coming years, we expect to deal with a lot more hair. (A lot!) It is therefore imperative that we continually monitor this new feedstock, including through additional testing, and at the same time explore new opportunities to exploit this nitrogen-rich material for agriculture.
After great interest from our members and the disposable salon towel companies alike in educating salons on a not very well understood topic, we’ve decided to undertake another year-long research report. This time, we’ll be focusing on the impact of chemicals, both to our health and the planet’s, as well as exploring ways to reduce chemical waste.
Our research into chemicals will focus on two key impact areas:
• Chemical waste, including causes of waste and how we can reduce and prevent it from happening in the first place.
We will be collaborating industry-wide to gather information for the report. We will speak to Green Salon Collective members, SmartMix and similar tech brands, product companies, Trade Unions, hairdressing colleges and more to better understand what is currently being done and how we can improve both health and safety and colour waste.