5 Tips for Healthy Hair & a Healthy Environment
With the earth heating up way faster than expected, we’re already beginning to experience severe consequences and will continue to if we, as a community, don’t reduce our carbon emissions and greenhouse gases.
We need to acknowledge the fact that industrial processes, agriculture, forestry, and other activities are a large source of climate change, along with the millions of tonnes of pollution that are dumped into oceans each year. However the change can start at home: something as simple as hair care, and taking a few steps towards adapting your routine, can have a big effect on your carbon footprint.
As we actively work towards holding multimillion dollar companies responsible for their actions, we can begin the change towards a more eco friendly community right away with something as simple and hair care and adapting our routine to positively affect the environment.
1. Shower with cold water instead of hot
Heating water is an incredibly energy intensive task. In fact, a simple 10 minute shower using an electric immersion heater is equivalent to leaving a television on for 20 hours. Moral of the story being: take shorter showers to cut down water usage, and stop using hot water to preserve more energy. A combination of short showers and cold water not only save your wallet and the planet, but your hair as well! The natural oils that your hair produces are often stripped away as a result of high water temperatures, which leaves you with dry and brittle hair, more prone to breakage and damage. Cold water also immensely helps improve your blood circulation - so it’s a win from every aspect!
2. Upcycle your empty bottles
With the endless amount of empty shampoo and conditioner bottles we’re left with throughout the year, upcycling is the perfect way to put them to use instead of throwing them out. Upcycling refers to the process of using waste/unwanted items and repurposing them into something creative and useful. This process can help reduce the number of bottles that end up in landfills every year (in the US alone, 552 million shampoo bottles could end up in landfills every year, by the year 2050). There are a number of ways you can upcycle empty bottles; turn them into makeup brush holders, create a DIY shower caddy, and make a cute plant pot. The possibilities are honestly endless - it’s all up to you and how you use your creativity!
3. Rinse out your conditioner quicker
Here’s a fun fact: 50 people rinsing out their conditioner just 10 seconds faster would allow 9,000 litres of water to be saved. Now keep multiplying this number and imagine what a significant change we can make in reducing our overall carbon footprint with this simple step. Using fast-rinse conditioners can also be an option - they allow for every shower to be even more eco-friendly, while also giving you shiny, smooth and healthy hair.
4. Use heatless hairstyles more often
Skipping the heat within your routine - whether it be a hair dryer, straightener, or curler - can do wonders for the environment and your hair. It’s well known that using heat too often is the cause of damaged and dry hair, so limiting heat styling not only prevents this, but also allows for more energy efficiency. Considering the fact that a single hair dryer roughly emits 57 lbs of carbon dioxide a year, this is a big step that we can all take a couple times a week to make a big difference. There are numerous alternative heatless styling techniques that you can try out instead, whether it be bouncy, overnight curls, mermaid waves, or slicked ponytails and buns. Heatless hairstyles don’t have to be a hassle and you save time, electricity, and preserve the health of your hair - what’s not to love?
5. Wash your hair less often
Overwashing your hair is a well known concept, however many people continue to wash their hair multiple times a week. Not only does it make your hair more prone to grease, you also begin to lose moisture as it is stripped of its natural oils. Additionally, a simple routine of shampooing your hair twice, and using conditioner after, uses about 14,222 litres of water and 1252 kWh of energy. Conversely, if you shampoo twice a week and use leave-in conditioner, you would be using 613 litres of water annually, while using only 55kWh of energy. Clearly, we have a winner.
Who said you can't have flawless hair and be sustainable and eco friendly?