By Krysia West owner of Perfectly Posh.
2020 is time for us as an industry to stand up and take action now before it is too late and my #PerfectlySustainable mission is designed to encourage us as an industry to support each other in this mission, collaborate and share with one another. Becoming greener and vegan as a salon is non-negotiable if we are to ensure sustainability. The first step in this journey is to become more aware, think about the impact your day to day salon life has on our planet, and make changes wherever possible.
At Perfectly Posh, I noticed the number of disposable plastic gloves we were using and discarding on a daily and weekly basis was frightening, and really damaging to our environment. I have since invested in bio-degradable gloves which the team are really excited and passionate about. I have also become very conscious of what we put down our sinks. As with all hair salons, we have a considerable amount of colour wastage that we unfortunately, have to dispose of down our sinks. We now work with Vish, a colouring weighing system. Working with them we will be able to dramatically reduce our colour wastage which will, in turn, stop us throwing so much down our drains and into our oceans. This will also be more cost-effective for us as a salon.
This waste in-salon also applies to the hair that we cut. Following a clients appointment, we would sweep this up and put into our landfill bin which impacts our environment. As a result of this realisation, I contacted the Green Salon Collective who are doing some great work and they are able to collect our hair and make it into booms and mats. This recycling process is tremendous and something we should all consider in our industry. They also collect our colour tubes and foils, and will also soon be able to collect all of our plastic, cardboard and chemical waste. If we as an industry were to adopt this as common practice the positive impact would be immeasurable. In addition, the furniture in our salon was sourced from reclaimed scaffolding boards, tree trunks and branches. Not only does this fit with our aesthetic, but it is also completely vegan and eco-friendly.
Taking this sort of creative approach to all aspects of your salon will surprise you in terms of where you can be greener and more eco-aware. I crafted the light in our backwash area from a branch I found and it is one of my favourite pieces in the salon, not to mention it is vegan and completely green! Consider your product company too, it won’t be possible for you as a salon to become more vegan and green if your product house doesn’t offer something along those lines. We work with Aveda as this sits well with our salon ethos and the variety of vegan products as well as recyclable packaging and ethically sourced ingredients they provide ensures we are much kinder to our planet and can cater to those vegan clients too.
What will you do in 2020 to be #PerfectlySustainable?
By Krysia West.
Green Salon Collective sat down to learn more about Krysia.
How would your staff describe you? My team usually describe me as more of a friend and mentor than their boss, which is so heartwarming for me. I like to think of us as a team, and we really do operate as a family – we support each other and work through things together, which is why I think they feel they can rely on me as a confident and friend figure. They always tell me that I never slow down and that I am a bit of a speed train! The truth is my mind is always full of ideas and I love to see a vision come together.
The most worrying environmental stat that you've seen / heard recently? I find the impact we have on our oceans to be the most worrying environmental aspect just now. It is incredibly saddening to know that our way of life and current waste levels are having such a catastrophic impact on our oceans and that as we continue this will be irreversible. From plastics to chemical waste I am truly devastated by the effect we have on our gorgeous waters and I am so passionate about doing everything I can to positively impact this.
Favourite eco/sustainable product/organisation? (Not hairdressing related). I love Smol. They are a detergent agent for dishwater and washing machines that is so much better for our environment and is made from completely sustainable products. All of their packaging is recycled too and can be recycled again. This is something we may overlook when thinking about environmental damage, yet it is so important.
Who is your "eco-hero"? Without a doubt, my eco-hero is Horst Rechelbacher the founder of Aveda. He founded Aveda in the 1970s and was one of the very first to use flower and plant ingredients to produce products for hair, skin, body care and makeup and subsequently lifestyle products too. I am amazed that he even considered and implemented sustainable sourcing of all ingredients and used wind power to produce his manufacturing even back in the 70’s.
What is one small change you'd like everyone to make that would benefit the planet?
I would really love each and every one of us to consider what we put into our sinks. Everything that we put down our sinks eventually comes back into our water system or into our oceans and this can be so damaging when we act carelessly. I also believe there is less light shone on this aspect of environmental damage, and we should all think about it more. I’d also like to see all of us recycle all of our plastic to ensure that zero plastic ends up in our waters.
Follow Krysia and Perfectly Posh here. Krysia