Sus­tain­abil­ity: for beauty & busi­ness All about the new wave of 'green sa­lons'

The 21st cen­tury’s burn­ing topic— sus­tain­abil­ity—is fast catch­ing up with the global sa­lon in­dus­try too. It is a great means to drive en­vi­ron­men­tally-con­scious prac­tices, with long term effects on busi­nesses.

Hair - - Contents -

While the sa­lon in­dus­try in the West (es­pe­cially in Aus­tralia) is seen to be em­brac­ing the ‘green sa­lon’ con­cept at a rapid rate, their In­dia coun­ter­parts seem to have taken the slow track to sus­tain­able busi­ness. Be­ing a coun­try that runs on in­ge­nious ideas, it wouldn’t be hard for us to fig­ure out the nu­ances, how­ever, in­dus­try aware­ness and eco­nomic con­sid­er­a­tions are a ma­jor hin­drance to sa­lon own­ers. Al­though sus­tain­abil­ity is yet to leave a mark on the In­dian beauty in­dus­try on a large scale, efficient re­cy­cling and waste man­age­ment is a gen­uine concern for the sa­lons. Here’s an ex­pert take on the ini­tia­tives/ pro­grams that a few in­dus­try lead­ers have taken to do their bit in re­duc­ing en­vi­ron­men­tal havoc.

Eco-friendly ap­proach

In­ter­na­tional brands have paved the way to prac­tice sus­tain­able mea­sures, one among those lead­ing the pack is the pro­fes­sional favourite brand Ma­trix. One of their best­selling ranges, Bi­o­lage, is strongly rooted in nat­u­ral­ity, with the core range be­ing in­spired by na­ture. Hence Bi­o­lage is com­mit­ted to giv­ing back to na­ture by mak­ing beauty sus­tain­able. Glob­ally, they pro­duce, in­no­vate and de­velop sus­tain­ably. By us­ing Bi­o­lage, one al­ready takes a step to­wards sus­tain­abil­ity as those prod­ucts are not only good for your hair but also good for the planet. Mel­roy Dickson, GM-Ed­u­ca­tion, Ma­trix be­lieves that it is re­ally easy for hair­dressers to take small sim­ple steps to get their sa­lons clean and green.


In 1990, when Arnie Miller saw that na­ture could be har­nessed to pro­tect and nourish hair, he launched Bi­o­lage. He not only pro­moted the use of botan­i­cal in­gre­di­ents, but also be­lieved in the power of na­ture for the well-be­ing of stylists and clients. Bi­o­lage has found ways to in­cor­po­rate this phi­los­o­phy in a reg­u­lar sa­lon ex­pe­ri­ence too. Hair­dressers are be­ing trained on sim­ple ini­tia­tives like ju­di­cious use of wa­ter, elec­tric­ity and other re­sources, as the brand has be­gun cre­at­ing sus­tain­abil­ity-ori­ented ed­u­ca­tional mod­ules. Spe­cial sa­lon ac­ces­sories have been de­vel­oped that are com­pletely biodegrad­able. An ini­tia­tive to re­duce wa­ter wastage at the back­wash is un­der­way. The win­dows are kept clean so that max­i­mum nat­u­ral light can flow into the sa­lon. More­over sa­lons are be­ing en­cour­aged to turn green, with spe­cial green zones that are in­spired by na­ture.


All for­mu­lae of Bi­o­lage Core draw in­spi­ra­tion from botan­i­cals—like camel­lia flower, orchid flower and aloe vera. The Bi­o­lage Ad­vanced range that re­solves se­ri­ous hair con­cerns brings na­ture to­gether with molec­u­lar sci­ence. The pri­mary man­u­fac­tur­ing fa­cil­ity at Ma­trix is mak­ing con­stant ef­forts to pro­duce sus­tain­ably, by re­duc­ing waste and wa­ter con­sump­tion. The fa­cil­ity uses a process called lightweight­ing to min­imise the plas­tic used in their bot­tles. Up to 40% of the plas­tic used is post-con­sumer re­cy­cled (PCR), and they in­form us that they are con­sis­tently push­ing to im­prove this.

Make strides to­ward en­vi­ron­men­tal friend­li­ness

NEU sa­lon chain’s re­cent ini­tia­tive is about driv­ing aware­ness about the im­por­tance of a sus­tain­able en­vi­ron­ment. When asked about the driv­ing force of the ‘green sa­lon’ con­cept, Vib­hoar, CEO, NEU says, “Rather than in­spi­ra­tion, it was just a scare! We wit­ness pol­lu­tion and its im­pact in our ev­ery­day lives. We just need to stop for a sec­ond and pay at­ten­tion to our sur­round­ings. Delhi, Gur­gaon are be­ing con­sid­ered as one of the most pol­luted cities in the world and hence we thought if we could at least do our bit for the en­vi­ron­ment. You can be a part of the prob­lem or you can be a part of the so­lu­tion. We’d rather be a part of the so­lu­tion. Sus­tain­able sa­lons is a con­cept that struck our mind some­time around last year and we were very ex­cited to work to­wards this com­mit­ment since then..” Vib­hoar fur­ther re­veals that the sa­lon chain is try­ing to prac­tice the ‘re­duce, re­use & re­cy­cle mantra’ across the branches. The sus­tain­able model now ap­plies to five of NEU sa­lons in Gur­gaon and the com­pany also ex­pect their fu­ture sa­lons to fol­low the same path. “From wa­ter con­ser­va­tion to light­ing to re­duc­ing car­bon emis­sions. Even, the en­tire sa­lon waste is be­ing re­cy­cled by a pro­fes­sional waste man­age­ment com­pany. We have re­placed our sta­tionery with re­cy­cled pa­per, while the plas­tic wa­ter bot­tles have given way to wa­ter dis­pensers. We’re also looking at owning green spa­ces in and around Gur­gaon and help­ing in main­tain­ing them. We’re looking at ed­u­cat­ing our guests as well as chil­dren about the im­por­tance a sus­tain­able fu­ture,” he says.

Go Green

Blos­som Kochhar Aroma Magic Uni­sex Green Sa­lon is touted as the pi­o­neer of the green sa­lon con­cept. The brand en­vi­sions to have run­ning sus­tain­abil­ity right through the sa­lon. “The con­cept of green sa­lons was de­vel­oped to give shape to the brand’s vi­sion of cre­at­ing re­spon­si­ble and sus­tain­able beauty. Through this, the com­pany is tak­ing steps to re­duce, re­cy­cle, re­use and keep the en­ergy con­sump­tion low com­pared to any other sa­lon in the in­dus­try,” says Dr Blos­som Kochhar, Chair­per­son, Blos­som Kochhar Group Of Com­pa­nies. The sa­lon chain aims to awaken peo­ple to the con­cept of a truly nour­ish­ing, heal­ing sa­lon en­vi­ron­ment and holis­tic prac­tices. Dr. Kochhar shares how the sa­lon is lead­ing the way to re­duce the car­bon foot­print...


The green walls in sa­lons pro­vide a com­fort­able eco-friendly en­vi­ron­ment. En­ergy efficient light­ing en­sures less elec­tric­ity con­sump­tion and less heat emis­sion. The in­te­ri­ors of the sa­lon are min­i­mal­is­tic in de­sign. The large win­dows and doors make sure that the rooms are flooded with nat­u­ral light dur­ing the day. The fur­ni­ture and fix­tures in­clude use of al­ter­na­tive ma­te­ri­als like bam­boo and have min­imised the use of woods, thus stick­ing to their mantra of sus­tain­abil­ity. Cot­ton fab­rics have been used in the spalon.


Prod­ucts from Blos­som Kochhar Aroma Magic brand are used as all our prod­ucts are 100% free of parabens, al­co­hol, harm­ful chem­i­cals, ar­ti­fi­cial fra­grance and colours and pro­mote an or­ganic way of life­style. As we are com­mit­ted to us­ing safe and na­ture de­rived prod­ucts in our sa­lon, we have made it a point to part­ner wher­ever pos­si­ble with some of the best eco-friendly hair and nail brands to en­sure our clients get safe and healthy beauty so­lu­tions. Our prod­uct pack­ag­ing will not harm the en­vi­ron­ment as they are biodegrad­able.


Ther­a­pists are trained to con­trol wa­ter wastage and us­age of ex­cess elec­tric­ity while ser­vic­ing their clients.

The opin­ions of th­ese ex­perts open up new pos­si­bil­i­ties. After­all, it is clear that sus­tain­abil­ity needs no big over­hauls. Tiny changes in run­ning the busi­ness with a firm hand on op­ti­mal util­i­sa­tion of re­sources can bring about a larger im­pact on the en­vi­ron­ment and the so­ci­ety. Lead the way and in­spire clients to fol­low through—and sus­tain­able beauty needn’t be a dis­tant dream.

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