Robbinsdale salon goes to great lengths to recycle hair
Taking out the trash, every day, sometimes multiple times a day was pretty typical for Salon Halo owner Amanda Kist.  That was until about two months ago, when the dirty job was greatly minimized.

"About once every three to four days vs every single day," said Kist.

So how did she see such a drastic decrease? Salon Halo became Green Circle Salon certified. They can now recycle things like hair clippings, highlight foils, and color product, all of which used to go in the trash.

"Now we're able to recycle 80 percent of our waste instead of dumping it into the environment," said Kist.

Salon Halo is one of only a few salons in the Twin Cities with the designation. Once stylists fill up the eco-friendly bags, UPS picks them up and takes them to a Green Circle facility.

"On average we've been finding out it takes about a month to fill two of these," Kist said.

And what they do with the hair is fascinating. The hair is sent to a women's prison in British Columbia.

"So these women come together and they make hair booms for oil spills. So any environmental clean up, it really helps out,"she said.

The hair is also used in dog beds for animal shelters and pillows for relief efforts in Haiti.

"This is about five weeks of foils that we go through in the salon," said Kist as she showed a full bag of hair foils.

Hair foils are melted down, chemicals from hair coloring removed, and then it's turned into aluminum bricks. They will be used for future hair foils or aluminum wrap you'd find in your kitchen. Meanwhile, leftover color product is converted into oil and used for energy.

"Seeing how much we are actually scraping in versus going down the drain or in the garbage, we celebrate our victories when there's nothing to scrape," said Kist

Kist says clients pay $1 to $2 more depending on the service.

"As far as the processing and what not, that does fall on the consumer, but you are making the world a better place for doing it. So, for a dollar we can clean up oil spills."

Kist says they've already seen business increase as a result of their green efforts.

"It's just another draw to kind of help us be a lot more aware and again if we're taking care of our community, our community will take care of us."

Emily Raguse, reporting

January 22, 2018


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