Running a successful salon
May 3, 2023
10 Simple ways to make your Hair Salon Sustainable
Running a sustainable hair salon is an ethical, cost-effective, and profitable choice. Find out how to make your business eco-friendlier in this guide!
With major threats like global warming, plastic pollution, and excessive CO2 emissions looming over our beautiful planet, sustainability has become the responsibility of every individual and business. Hair salons, no matter the scale, can have a large impact on where our pale blue dot ends up, so if you're not participating in any sustainability initiatives, it’s about time to take action.
Not sure if you have extra time and money to switch to an eco-friendly way of running a salon? The truth is, the transition doesn't take long and will help you cut a lot of expenses in the long term. Check out this guide for easy-to-implement sustainable hair salon ideas that will set you on the path to a business that's better for both the planet and your budget!
Why Is a Sustainable Approach Important for Salons?
Taking an active part in addressing environmental issues is important for a number of reasons. Here are some of the most critical ones:
Contributing to saving the planet. When running a sustainable hair salon, you will be minimizing the carbon footprint left by your business, reducing pollution, and building a better life for generations to come!
Reducing monthly expenses. While switching to a more sustainable way of operating a business may sound costly at first, the reality is the opposite - in the long run, you will be able to cut down your bills significantly.
Providing healthier options for your clients. Eco-friendly hair products are safer for both your clients and nature.
Appealing to a younger audience. Gen Z is also known as the sustainability generation, as the majority of young people prefer brands and products that take care of the environment.
Best Practices for an Eco-Friendly Salon
Here are the top ten practical tips that you can start applying to your hair salon immediately:
Get Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs
One of the simplest ways to make your salon’s operations more sustainable is to replace incandescent lighting with LED lights. Even though LED bulbs may seem pricey when you purchase them, you are sure to save up a lot in the long run.
LEDs are the most energy-efficient and cost-effective lighting option, as they use at least 75% less energy and last 25x longer than regular bulbs. Besides, it doesn’t take a lot of effort to implement this idea, so it’s a great first step toward your sustainability goal!
Use Electricity Wisely
Going for a better lighting option is great, but it’s not enough for a truly sustainable approach. A common mistake many businesses make, including hair salons, is leaving the lights on when a room is not in use.
Remember that the ultimate goal is to use mainly natural lighting. But how to achieve it?
One way to do it is to hang reminders next to the switches so that your employees and clients would be mindful of turning off the lights when they exit a room.
Another solution is to install motion sensors in spaces that don’t have too much traffic, such as bathrooms and storages.
Yet again, these tips will not only help you protect the environment but also enable you to save some money on electricity bills.
About 68 million trees are chopped annually to produce paper products, which end up being responsible for 25% of waste in the landfill.
So, one of the best changes to implement for the sake of your salon’s sustainability is to go paper-free. This means getting rid of the paper agenda and switching to a digital solution. Luckily, this shift also comes hand-in-hand with more convenient salon management.
Noona is an all-in-one scheduling app that enables you to perform a variety of actions, like:
Allowing clients to book appointments
Viewing your schedule on-the-go
Sending automatic reminders to clients
Accessing your financial reports
Seeing the client history
That’s right - all these features and zero paperwork.
All you’ll have to do to implement this sustainable solution is to install the application through App Store or Google Play, set up your account, and you’re good to go!
Practice Smart Temperature Control
Instead of spending electricity on running the A/C, you can invest in tinted windows. They will help block UV rays and protect the space from overheating. This tip is also applicable to mobile hair salons!
Another great alternative to air conditioning is introducing ceiling fans that will cool the salon down effectively on moderately hot days and add a fun touch to the interior.
Also, remember that you can save up to 10% on heating and cooling bills each year if you lower the thermostat in your salon by 7 to 10 degrees. If it doesn’t get too cold in your area, this could be a beneficial solution for both your budget and the environment.
Remember to Spend Water in Moderation
Water is, undoubtedly, an essential element without which a hair salon can’t run. But have you ever thought of ways to reduce its usage?
Here are some simple ways to do it:
Make sure the employees remember to turn off the faucet when they don’t need it. Switching the water flow off even for a few seconds instead of letting it run continuously goes a long way.
Install eco shower heads for your hair salon sinks to achieve high water pressure while saving up to 65% of water and energy.
Check for water drips or pipe leaks in your hair salon and, if any are detected, get them fixed.
If possible in your area, you can also opt for replacing your electric water heater with an energy-saving and cost-effective solar panel alternative.
Choose Eco-Friendly Transportation
Encouraging your employees to use eco-friendly means of transportation and leading by example is yet another tip for running a sustainable hair salon. Depending on the distance to the workplace, the team members can opt for public transport, cycling, or walking, instead of a private vehicle.
However, if your employees live rather far from work, creating a staff carpool is a great idea to save money, connect, and reduce carbon emissions.
Use Organic and Cruelty-Free Hair Products
Each year, more than 100 million animals die in the US alone due to product testing. Such actions disrupt the balance of nature and go against sustainability principles. That’s why using vegan and cruelty-free hair products is a conscious choice to support the planet.
Also, whenever possible, it’s good to use organic hair products. These are sure to be not as harmful to your clients as the solutions that contain ingredients like ammonia. Besides, the decision to switch to organic products will significantly reduce the amount of toxic chemicals that end up going down the drain.
One line of organic products you could consider is Oway. This brand offers products that are organic, cruelty-free, and come in eco-friendly packaging.
Make Recycling a Habit
Recycling effectively in a hair salon will require you to get special bins and educate yourself and the personnel on how to use them correctly.
The main types of waste to recycle in hair salons include:
Metals. Nowadays, only 1% of salon foil currently gets recycled, even though aluminum can take up to 400 years to break down.
Plastic. Make sure the plastic packaging is clean and odorless before you throw it into the recycling bin to avoid hazardous residue.
Paper. Even if you decide to stop using paper in your salon, it’s hardly possible to avoid it completely due to packaging, magazines, and so on.
Hazardous waste. A quick way to check if a product is considered hazardous waste is to look for a Safety Data Sheet (SDS). Any products that require an SDS contain chemical components. Some common hazardous waste examples in salons include aerosols, hair dye, bleach, shampoos, and disinfectants.
Hair. Human hair can be used as compost, as it contains nitrogen, which is beneficial for the soil. You can also donate hair for wigs or ocean cleanup initiatives.
Old equipment, like dryers, curling irons, or laptops, can also be disposed of in specialized recycling areas.
Use Lasting Hair Tools
Focus on finding hair tools that last and come from eco-friendly brands. This way, you will reduce waste and support other sustainable businesses.
One example of a sustainable hair brand is Leaf Scissors, with its selection of durable salon products. This company also plants trees for every pair of scissors sold, which offsets the carbon emissions generated throughout the manufacturing and delivery process.
Support an Ecological Cause
Your salon can also advocate for a sustainability cause. This could be anything from planting trees to supporting cruelty-free product brands. Raising awareness among staff members, as well as participating in relevant events as a team, is a great way to put your vision into action.
Ready to Adopt a Greener Approach?
As you can see, the adoption of sustainable hair salon practices can be done one step at a time and doesn’t require any major changes. Besides, apart from being an ethical choice, it is also a cost-effective way to run your company and a business opportunity that will enrich your audience with customers who support an eco-friendly philosophy.
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