A salon owner, a butcher and an Irishman all walk into a bar. What on earth do they all have in common? Well..the earth of course! No matter who you are or what you do, we all have to live in and help repair our beautiful planet.
It’s world environment day today (5th June), so this is a great time to have a good think about how your spa, salon or barbershop is impacting the environment.
Waste is a huge environmental issue in the salon industry. So many of our products are detrimental to the environment and contribute to exorbitant amounts of landfill. Many things that can be recycled are simply thrown away without a thought.
“There is no such place as ‘away’, when we throw anything away it must go somewhere“. Annie Leonard.
And unfortunately, that somewhere is landfill or our waterways. According to research by Refoil Australia, salons discard 1.5 million Kgs of aluminium foil and colour tubes into landfill every year. That’s enough to make you feel a little green around the gills, right?
There is a multitude of things that can be recycled in spas and salons from foil, tubes, bottles, razors, electric equipment, plastics and even hair.
SO WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOU?
Getting into the green scene is not only good for the environment but it can save you money, boost sales, give you a competitive edge and improve public perception of your business. How so? Environmentally conscious consumers are becoming increasingly more educated, with millennials saying that sustainability is a shopping priority. In fact, one study (Forbes 2017), found that 92% of consumers would be more likely to trust a company that supports social and environmental issues, and 85% would be more likely to be loyal to that business.
Reducing usage of resources and consciously reducing waste can also translate into saving money. More on that later.
There are many waste management services around the globe that specifically help salons recycle and reduce waste. For example, Australia and NZ have a company called Sustainable Salons that provide and collect bins to recycle up to 95% or your waste. They also provide marketing leaflets to show your clients all the great environmental work you are doing. The USA and Canada also have similar waste management programs called Green Circle Salons and A Matter Of Trust. Wherever you are in the world, there is likely to be a waste management solution for you, even your local council or environmental organisation can help direct you in better recycling practices.
Remember, we all have a responsibility to try and make a difference, so remember the three R’s…. Reduce, Reuse and Recycle!
“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it”. Robert Swan.
HOW TO GREEN YOUR SCENE.
1. RECYCLE! RECYCLE! RECYCLE!
Recycling in a salon needs to go beyond just plastic and bottles. Aluminium foil is totally recyclable, but it needs to be recycled in a certain manner. Contact your local salon waste management service who will collect all your foil, razors and colour tubes to divert them from going to landfill. A new product on the market called, Paper Not Foil is the world’s first re-usable and bio-degradable hair foil made from sustainable paper. Another great way the salon industry is looking for more environmentally friendly alternatives.
What about hair? Be a part of something fantastic and donate all your hair clippings which are used to make hair booms. Hair booms are scrap hair that is put into sausage like mesh tubes to use in the ocean to help mop up oil spills. How good is that? Some companies will also collect ponytail length hair to make wigs for children or women with alopecia or cancer.
According to Recycle Nation, people are finding many more ways to recycle hair such as plant fertiliser and animal bedding. Some more bizarre ways are jewellery (I’m sorry but, eww), clothing, (double eww!) and even hair sculptures (not for me thanks).
Ever thought about electronic waste? Anything from mobile phones, hair dryers, straighteners, curling irons and shears are recyclable. Simply contact your local council or recycling organisation to find out how to correctly dispose of these products.
2. SAVE ENERGY, SAVE MONEY AND SAVE THE PLANET.
Small changes in the way you use electricity in your salon can make a big difference in reducing your carbon footprint and also saving you money. Switching to energy efficient light bulbs such as LED and CFL’s are an easy way to reduce
Did you know that when electrical items are not in use but still plugged in, they are still drawing power? So why not get into the habit of turning off all your powerpoints at the end of your day. It reduces consumption and reduces your electricity bill.
Other ways to reduce your energy use is to only purchase energy efficient electrical appliances such as washers, dryers and fridges where possible. Solar panels are also a great option to consider if possible.
3. BE WATER WISE.
Every drop counts…literally! In today’s world water is becoming a precious commodity. Fixing leaky taps is an easy way to save water and money. A tap that leaks one drop of water every two seconds, adds up to 4000 litres annually. So every drop really does count and don’t forget you are paying for it too!
When washing towels, wait until you have a full load. Partial loads are simply a waste of water and energy.
Are you using an eco-friendly shower head in your shampoo basins? Consider the benefits for both your bottom dollar and the environment.
4. EMBRACE THE CLOUD.
Cloud computing is rapidly becoming recognised as an eco-friendly way to reduce greenhouse emissions. A recent study by the Global E-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI), predicts that at the current rate of adoption, cloud computing could result in a 16.5% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2020.
That is why at Neko Salon Software, we are all about the cloud. By using our cloud-based software in your salon, all your data is stored in the cloud so there is no need to purchase large desktops or multiple computers for different locations. Smaller, cheaper and more energy efficient tablets or laptops are all that is required, saving electricity, money and space. Neko Cloud software also gives you the flexibility to access your business wherever you are.
Cloud software like Neko also allows you to go paperless, reducing your need for paper-based bookkeeping and appointment books, hardcopy invoices and receipts. As all your paperwork and financial reports are in digital format and easily accessible, you will reduce your reliance on paper, printers and ink. It’s a win-win situation.
5. SUSTAINABLE PRODUCTS.
Scrutinise the products you are using and selling in your salon. Consider whether these products are eco-friendly, recyclable, have excessive packaging or if they contain harmful chemicals such as ammonia or formaldehyde.
You may also choose to offer organic or more natural based products to reduce harsh chemical exposure. Vegan-friendly products are very popular with the environmentally conscious client. Products that are not tested on animals or contain animal-derived ingredients are also great sellers. The international humane society states that around 200,000 animals suffer and die every year around the world from animal testing. Nobody wants to be a part of that.
Refillable products are becoming increasingly popular with salons and clients alike. Clients can bring back their empty shampoo bottles to be refilled. Not only does this reduce packaging but also helps you save money.
So, as you can see, getting your salon into the green scene doesn’t have to cost you the earth (pun intended), but it can help save the earth and save you money too.
If your Salon isn’t already using Neko Salon Software, its time to get on board so you can store all your data in the cloud and go paperless, saving you time and money.
Why not try it for yourself. Sign up today for a free 14-day trial. https://www.getneko.com/free-trial/
We provide free email support as part of every subscription so getting started is super easy.
Already using another software system? No worries, we will migrate all your data into our system so you are ready to go.