By Chere Di Boscio
Hair salons can be scary places. The air can be thick with toxic fumes from hair sprays, formaldehyde-ridden keratin straightening agents, chemical hair dyes and more. Ammonia can damage your lungs, benzene can cause cancer, and the trichloroethylene in hair extensions and wig tape can damage skin and kidneys. And don’t even get us started on the damage to your health that can occur if you use those nasty things on your own hair!
No wonder there’s a whole new generation of hair salons emerging that only use natural products. Known as Holistic Hair Salons, these don’t just create ‘pretty hair’ – stylists here also have special training to bring you an elevated standard of beauty, wellness and environmental sustainability.
A holistic salon’s approach should be methodical and all encompassing. Your stylist should look at your hair and scalp and let you know if there are any issues or problems they can see, such as thinning hair, dry or oily scalp or chemically burnt out hair.
Of course, these salons should only use all natural shampoos without sodium laureth sulfates and other harsh chemicals, as well as natural conditioners, hair sprays, styling products and of course, hair dyes. They should also have some healthy, natural hair products and shampoos for sale. There should be a light, pleasant scent in the air – certainly nothing chemical that would induce a headache!
These salons are not so easy to find. There are a few good directories out there – check online for the nearest salon near you. Many stylists turn to a company called Simply Organic Beauty to get some holistic beauty expertise, education and advice. Simply Organic Beauty advises using an exclusive line of products called Oway, whose products take root on their 50,000 sqm of biodynamic family farmland, tucked away in the rolling hills of Bologna, Italy.
Biodynamic farming methods go beyond the elimination of pesticides and solvents. Plants are hand grown and harvested in synchronicity with lunar cycles, and polluting farm machinery is completely banned, ensuring each plant is rich in nutrients and supercharged phyto-ingredients. Oway, which is short for the “Organic Way,” is the first brand in the professional beauty industry to use Farm to Chair ingredients. Not only is their hair dye comprised of biodynamic ingredients, it’s ammonia free, comes in 95 shades that provides full grey coverage, has no harsh fumes and gives long lasting, shiny hair colour. Oh, and of course it’s vegan friendly!
When plants can’t be grown on OrtOfficina, they’re ethically sourced via verified Fair Trade Networks. From indigenous tribes of Australia to the Amazonian rain forest, over 700 communities worldwide benefit from fair wages, safe working conditions and eco-friendly farming methods.
In addition to sustainable farming practices, Oway takes a green-first mindset from start to finish. They’re the first professional beauty brand to use infinitely recyclable amber glass bottles, jars and aluminum for all of their packaging.
What makes a product “infinitely recyclable” versus just “recyclable” is altogether fascinating: “infinitely recyclable” means a material can be recycled again and again, without ever losing its strength. Plastic, while mostly recyclable, eventually loses its strength and cannot continue to be recycled. After all, where do you think all that unusable plastic ends up? You guessed it – oceans and landfills.
Amber glass, while infinitely recyclable, is also the purest packaging available. It’s dark brown color protects the high concentration of biodynamic botanicals and essential oils found in Oway products.
Plastic is known to leak harmful hormone-mimicking chemicals into products. However, since glass is made of 100% natural components, product formulas stay pure and preserved.
The lengths Oway has gone to create a holistic beauty and wellness system that respects the health of the hair and greater world cannot be understated. From biodynamic botanical scalp treatments to their award-winning ammonia free hair color, there is holistic-minded solution to ultimately any beauty and wellness issue one would expect to solve at the salon.
The Bottom Line
As was mentioned, the chemicals used to make the glue and tape for hair extensions and the chemicals used in perms and straighteners are also very toxic – be sure to use only natural hair and glues, or even clip in extensions instead. Oway makes an ammonia-free, thioglycolate-free and paraben-free perm/straightener called Wave Shaper – a much healthier alternative!
It is indeed important to go to a holistic salon, especially if you colour or straighten your hair – not only will they keep your hair looking good, it will be stronger and shinier as a result of using all natural products like Oway’s. More importantly, you’ll save yourself from the myriad pitfalls of using toxic chemicals that can damage your health – and your hair.
For more information about Holistic Hair Salons carrying Oway or becoming an Oway stockist, please click here.