Making (salon waste) history: Auckland salon first in NZ to go sustainable

Cosmedicine Nurse Kaitlin Bruce and Dr Catherine Ston
Cosmedicine Nurse Kaitlin Bruce and Dr Catherine Stone showcase Sustainable Salons biodegradable gloves. Photo credit: Supplied

An Auckland salon has become the first in New Zealand to join an international sustainability programme, after learning shocking statistics over salon waste.

The Face Place in Britomart is the first medical clinic in New Zealand to join the Australian Sustainable Salons programme , and say they are aiming to reduce their landfill waste by 70 percent.

Clinician Dr Catherine Stone says she's extremely excited about the initiative.

"We have been moving more and more into the 'conscious business' space over the last year, so when I went to the launch of Sustainable Salons NZ, it was a no-brainer for me," she says.

"Hairdressers can now recycle up to 95 percent of their waste to prevent it going into landfill - ponytails can be made into wigs, and hair 'booms' can be used to mop up oil spills without the use of nasty chemicals.

"There are so many amazing ways they recycle plastics, chemicals, metal and even tools and I'm so thrilled to be a pioneer of their programme in New Zealand."

The Face Place team.
The Face Place team. Photo credit: Supplied

Through the Sustainable Salons programme, plastic bottles, packages and bags will be recycled into new products, keeping the materials in circulation and out of the ocean. All proceeds from the recycled materials will go towards helping to feed vulnerable New Zealanders via a charity called Kiwi Harvest.

"What's been amazing for me is the amount of plastic that we can recycle [and] how much plastic we were using and disposing of versus how little of it really needs to go into landfill," Dr Stone revealed.

The bins at the salon for recycling waste.
The bins at the salon for recycling waste. Photo credit: Supplied

So far on its journey to zero waste, Sustainable Salons has achieved:

  •  52,000kg of plastic kept in circulation and out of landfill
  •  70,800kg of paper recycled
  •  81,700kg of metals diverted from landfill
  •  7,500 litres of excess chemicals recycled back into water
  •  7.1 tonnes of hair collected for The Hair Boom Project
  •  25,300 ponytails collected resulting in 1,265 wigs for cancer and alopecia sufferers
  •  48,000 meals provided for the homeless
  •  Saved the same amount of CO2 as 180 flights from Sydney to London
  •  Recycled 800kg of e-waste, reducing the amount of raw materials mined and preventing toxins from leaching into the environment
  •  Saved enough water to fill 248,620 baths



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