7 Ways Hairdressers/Barbers Can Be More Sustainable Without Breaking the Bank!

Sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers
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The Importance Of Sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers

Sustainability is no longer a buzzword; it’s a necessity, especially for hairdressers and barbers. With climate change escalating, everyone has a role to play.

For hairdressers and barbers, it’s about adopting practices that protect our planet. It involves reducing waste, conserving resources, and fostering a green culture.

Beyond just a trend, sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers  can offer a real competitive edge. And guess what? It’s easier than you think!

The Role of Hairdressers/Barbers in Sustainability

As a hairdresser or barber, you might be surprised by the impact your profession can have on the environment. Hair salons and barbershops generate substantial waste daily, from product packaging to hair clippings.

Water usage is another major concern. Hair washing and other services can consume significant amounts of water, which is a precious resource in many parts of the world.

Moreover, many hair products contain harmful chemicals, which not only affect the health of your staff and customers but also get washed into our water systems.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. The beauty of the hairdressing and barbering industry is that there’s plenty of room for sustainable improvements.

By transforming your practices, you can help reduce the environmental footprint of your business. In doing so, you’ll not only create a healthier workspace but also appeal to increasingly eco-conscious customers.

New Zealand’s first sustainable barber shop

7 Ways Hairdressers/Barbers Can Be More Sustainable

1. Embrace Eco-friendly Hair Products

First and foremost, take a look at the products you’re using. Many contain harsh chemicals, not only harmful to the environment but also to you and your clients. Here’s the thing – you have a choice. There are plenty of eco-friendly hair products out there, made from natural ingredients and packaged in recyclable materials.

How to implement? Start researching and testing eco-friendly brands. Look out for organic, cruelty-free labels, and companies that prioritise sustainable packaging. Gradually replace your current inventory with greener alternatives.

Potential Impact? You’ll reduce the chemical load in your salon, creating a healthier environment for everyone. Plus, your clients will appreciate your commitment to sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers practices.

2. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Adopt the mantra of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” in your salon. Every single day, tons of waste are generated by hairdressing salons – think plastic packaging, hair foils, and disposable items. It doesn’t have to be this way.

How to implement? Get recycling bins and ensure they’re used properly. Go for reusable tools and equipment whenever possible. For instance, choose metal clips over plastic ones, and use washable towels instead of disposable paper ones.

Potential Impact? By reducing your waste, you’ll make a significant dent in your salon’s environmental footprint. Bonus points for setting a great example for your clients and staff!

3. Conserve Water

Water is a vital resource in hairdressing salons, but it can also be a significant source of waste. The good news is there are simple ways to reduce water usage without affecting your services.

How to implement? Install low-flow faucets and showerheads in your salon. Encourage clients to arrive with clean hair to reduce washing time. Regularly check for leaks and fix them promptly.

Potential Impact? By conserving water, you’re not only saving money but also contributing to a crucial global cause.

4. Energy Efficiency

Did you know that salons are big energy consumers? Between the lighting, heating, and various equipment, your energy bill can skyrocket. But here’s a secret – it’s also an area where you can easily become more sustainable.

How to implement? Opt for energy-efficient appliances when it’s time to replace old ones. Install LED lighting which uses significantly less energy. Keep your salon well-insulated to reduce heating and cooling costs.

Potential Impact? By becoming more energy efficient, you’ll not only reduce your carbon footprint but also save on your energy bills.

5. Green Building Design

If you’re lucky enough to be setting up a new salon or thinking of renovating, consider a green building design. This involves using sustainable materials and maximising natural light and ventilation.

How to implement? Consult with a green building expert when planning your salon layout. Use eco-friendly materials for your interiors. Design your space to utilise as much natural light as possible.

Potential Impact? A green building design will not only reduce your environmental impact but also create a refreshing and inviting atmosphere in your salon.

6. Sustainable Hair Disposal

You’d be surprised at the number of ways hair can be repurposed. It can be composted, used to clean up oil spills, or even woven into mats for gardening!

How to implement? Instead of throwing hair clippings into the trash, collect them for composting or donate them to organisations that can use them. Also, look into hair foil recycling programs.

Potential Impact? By repurposing hair waste, you’re keeping it out of landfills and giving it a second life. Now, that’s a sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers move!

7. Educate and Involve Your Clients

Your clients are a crucial part of your sustainability journey. When they see your efforts and understand why it’s important, they’re likely to support your green initiatives and maybe even adopt some at home.

How to implement? Communicate your sustainable practices clearly – use signage, newsletters, or social media. Invite them to bring their own reusable coffee cups or water bottles. Offer discounts for refilling product containers.

Potential Impact? By involving your clients, you’re spreading awareness and fostering a community of eco-conscious individuals. Plus, many clients nowadays prefer businesses that care for the environment.

Hairdressers/Barbers sustainability toolkit

Sustainability Toolkit For Hairdressers/Barbers

This toolkit is specifically designed for Hairdressers/Barbers, offering a comprehensive guide to enhancing sustainability in your operations. It’s like having a green consultant at your fingertips!

Sustainability Action Plan Template: This template provides a roadmap to become a more sustainable salon. It helps you set actionable, realistic goals and track your progress. Think of it as your personal guide to a greener business.

Sustainability Policy Template: A sustainability policy is a powerful statement of your commitment to the environment. This template helps you outline your strategies, responsibilities, and targets, showing your clients that you mean business.

Sustainable Supplier Assessment Template: This tool helps you assess and choose suppliers based on their environmental performance. By choosing green suppliers, you’re extending your sustainability efforts across the supply chain.

Waste Audit Template: A waste audit helps you understand the amount and type of waste your salon produces. With this knowledge, you can implement effective waste reduction strategies.

Employee Sustainability Pledge Template: Your team is a vital part of your sustainability journey. This template helps create a culture of sustainability within your staff, encouraging them to be eco-friendly at work and beyond.

Download your toolkit now!

Hairdressers/Barbers Found These Helpful

While you’re here, why not check out these related resources? They’re a hit with our sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers community and offer tons of practical tips.

Sustainable Beauty Salons: Find out how beauty salons are revolutionising their practices to protect the planet. It’s full of innovative ideas you can apply in your salon!

Sustainable Mobile Hairdressers: If you’re a mobile hairdresser, this one’s for you. Learn how to maintain a low-carbon footprint while delivering fantastic service.

Sustainable Hotels: Interested in sustainability beyond your salon? Discover how hotels are going green. It’s a great read, full of insights and inspiration!

“Hairdressers and barbers can adopt sustainable practices by using organic and eco-friendly products, minimising water usage, and implementing recycling programs.” – Green Salon Collective

The Challenges for Hairdressers/Barbers & Solutions

Embracing sustainability in the hairdressing/barbering industry is not without its challenges. Transitioning to sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers practices might require significant changes to business operations. The switch to eco-friendly products may come with higher costs, and implementing green practices may demand extra time and effort from your staff. Moreover, it can be difficult to find reliable information on the environmental footprint of various products and practices.

Potential Solutions

The key to overcoming these challenges is to take small steps. Start by making simple changes such as recycling and reducing water use. Educate yourself and your staff about sustainability – the more you understand, the easier it becomes to make informed decisions. As for cost, remember that many sustainable practices also lead to cost savings in the long run – reducing waste, for instance, means less need to buy disposable items. And, as more and more manufacturers recognise the demand for eco-friendly products, prices are likely to become more competitive.

Case Studies – Hairdressers/Barbers Sustainability

Despite the challenges, numerous hairdressers and barbers around the world have successfully made the switch to sustainability. Let’s take a look at a few inspiring examples.

The Green Hairdresser in Copenhagen, Denmark, has made sustainability its central ethos. From organic hair products to furniture made from reclaimed wood, every aspect of their operation is designed to minimise environmental impact. You can read more about their approach here.

In the United States, Groomed Men’s Salon in Seattle is setting a new standard for eco-friendly barbering. They use only organic products, recycle hair clippings and foil, and even offset their energy use with renewable energy credits. Learn about their sustainability journey here.

Impressive Sustainability Stats

In Europe, a survey found that 70% of consumers would choose a salon that shows a strong commitment to the environment over one that doesn’t. You can check out the survey results here. This trend is also reflected in the US, where 66% of consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable goods and services according to a Ashton Manufacturing report, found here.

These figures highlight the importance of sustainability in today’s hairdressing and barbering industry, demonstrating the tangible benefits of adopting eco-friendly practices.
Remember, sustainability is a journey, not a destination. So start small, be consistent, and let’s make a difference together!


In a nutshell, becoming a sustainable Hairdresser/Barber is more than a trend – it’s a business necessity. It’s about making a conscious effort to reduce waste, save water, switch to eco-friendly products, utilise green energy, educate staff and clients, source sustainably, and support green initiatives.

Though the transition may pose challenges, the benefits – ranging from cost savings to enhanced brand reputation – are truly worth the effort. Let’s take the leap towards a greener and cleaner future together!

Sustainable Hairdressers/Barbers FAQ

Q1: How can I reduce waste in my salon?
A1: Start by switching to refillable products, recycle wherever possible, consider biodegradable consumables, and implement a salon waste management system.

Q2: What eco-friendly products can I use?
A2: Choose hair care products that are organic, cruelty-free, and come in recyclable packaging. Always check the ingredients and avoid harmful chemicals.

Q3: Can I save water in my salon?
A3: Absolutely! Install water-saving showerheads, encourage clients to come with pre-washed hair, and consider water-efficient washing machines for your towels.

Q4: How can I educate my clients about sustainability?
A4: Use your social media platforms and salon space to share information about your green initiatives. Make it a part of your customer conversations.

Q5: How can my salon use green energy?
A5: Switch to a renewable energy supplier, consider installing solar panels, and use energy-efficient appliances and lighting.

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