Haircuts for the Homeless

haircuts for homeless charity

“Whatever the causes of an individual’s homelessness, the consequences can be brutal. Homelessness damages people’s capability: they lose skills; they can’t think about employment while worrying about housing; their health becomes impaired due to being homeless. It knocks their resilience, self-esteem and self-confidence.” 

Stewart Roberts, Founder H4H.

I think about homelessness all year round but it’s always this time of year when the weather starts getting colder, right up until the cold temperatures break in early spring, I find myself thinking about people on the streets more.

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Get your hair done at an eco hair salon

karine jackson eco salon
Karine_jackson salon covent garden london
Karine Jackson, Covent Garden IS LONDON’S first certified Sustainable Salon

Ever wondered how eco your hair salon is? Or maybe how eco your hair routine at home is? With the rise in environmental awareness, the University of Southampton discovered haircare and salons to be highly energy intensive (surprise, surprise) so they decided to launch the sustainable salon certification….(insert applause here)…

If you pop along to Karine Jackson salon in Covent Garden you’ll get a truly eco experience as it’s now officially the first hairdressers in London with this sustainability certificate. That means Karine and her team have not only made significant changes to reduce water and energy consumption and waste in the salon but advise customers how to do the same at home.

Karine, former London Hairdresser of the Year, has been a life-long advocate of green living and was one of the first salons in the capital to offer organic hair colouring (Organic Colour Systems), which uses fewer chemicals than conventional hair dye, and vegan hairdressing services, which I’ve reviewed several times and highly recommend (- not only for the dairy-free biscuit an almond latte, but for the team’s amazing cut and natural-colour skills).

…someone who washes their hair every day, rinses, repeats and blow dries uses 500kg of carbon dioxide a year. Washing hair every two days and rinsing only once, the carbon footprint goes down by 2000% to just 25kg of carbon dioxide.

Just check out the stats above – this is a single person’s carbon footprint so you can imagine how much energy a salon gets through each day, week and year. So giving a hairdressers a green makeover is not only an environmental win but the energy saving would save the business a ton of money too – a win for all. Karine is hoping this new eco initiative will encourage other salons to get on board too.

To find your nearest certified sustainable salon visit the salon locator: ecohairandbeauty.com

 

Recycled coffee made into shampoo 

oright recoffee coffee recycled into shampo

I loved this range as soon as I read the press release, before I’d even seen the product – and then loved it more after I tried it: shampoo, conditioner, body wash and hair oil by O’Right made from recycled coffee grounds collected from cafes and coffee shops in Taiwan. The granules are ground down into an oil and infused into the products. How cool is that?

As well as being super savvy on the recycling front, the ground coffee is also good for hair, they say. Apparently the caffeine can help stimulate the hair shaft encouraging hair growth. Labelled moisturising for dry/damaged hair, the shampoo which I use, leaves my hair very soft even without conditioner. The scent is mild – not like smelling a coffee bean as you might expect – but just the faintest hint of its former life. 

All the products are free from sulphates and manufactured in an eco friendly factory that uses solar and wind power for production. I also love the (biodegradable) packaging that’s strikingly modern, with little wooden tops and sleek necks. Like nothing else in my shower. I’d like to try the hair oil next. 

For more eco points, the Tree in a Bottle products have coffee seeds built into the base so you can plant your Recoffee bottle once you’ve finished with it and you might end up with a coffee tree of your very own, starting the cycle all over again. Smart.

O’Right does is a Taiwanese company that is flying the flag for eco haircare and their tagline is The World’s Greenest Shampoo. Love it. Check out the range at oright.co.uk

Vintage Batiste Hair Ad

Vintage Batiste hair advert

How was a hair shampoo for greasy hair promoted in the seventies? With girls with chips, fried egg and an oil can on their head, of course! Check out this vintage hair ad by Batiste that one of the girls at work (Layered magazine) dug out for a piece on heritage hair products – possibly one of the strangest and funniest vintage beauty ads I’ve seen. Don’t miss the tag line “Whatever the problem, don’t let it go to your head” and the moody girls at the end. Chips aside, greasy hair is clearly serious stuff!

 

 

What is co-washing aka no-poo shampoo?

Co-washing or no-poo as it’s also commonly known, is the latest craze in hair and beauty that’s likely to be this year’s biggest buzzword, especially with the launch of Ojon Cleansing Conditioner and Purely Perfect Cleansing Creme. But what is co-washing or no-poo exactly?

Short for conditioner-washing, co-washing is also called no-poo because this new beauty phenomenon is all about ditching regular shampoo and turning to conditioner to wash hair instead. It’s a trend that started over the pond where US women with afro, thick, curly or coarse hair have literally been washing their hair with conditioner. RIP for shampoo? Let’s see.

What is the benefit of washing with conditioner? People recommend co-washing for a more nourishing and hydrating way to cleanse, especially for curly, dry or afro hair. As textured hair is coarser and dryer, sulphate-loaded shampoos can simply be too drying. In fact, most people’s hair would benefit from silicone and sulphate-free cleansing (see a few of my recommendations here).

How does co-washing work? Cleansing conditioners contain no foaming agents, just a blend of essential oils that work to break down dirt and oil on the scalp and hair. There is no lathering or foaming but you just massage product onto scalp and hair and spread it through the lengths and leave it on for a few minutes. It might feel strange not having a soapy wash but results are worth it. Cue shiny, soft and plumped-up hair.

As the trend has spread, haircare brands have responded by launching cleansing conditioners as new, separate products. Wen by Chaz Dean Cleansing Conditioner is one of them that landed on my desk a few months ago via QVC.

wen hair cleansing conditioner reviewWen Cleansing Conditioner is a luscious cream conditioner packed with at least five different plant oils, all fairly high up on the ingredients list, and free from Sodium Laurel Sulphate. It smells mildly sweet and refreshingly minty, just as the label says.

I found the instructions tricky to follow at first, just because it’s so different to what we’re used to doing. But that’s a psychological issue of getting used to doing something completely different, i.e. washing foam-free with conditioner.

Instead of a small dollop, you need 10-16 pumps of product, which is a lot, so of course the first few times I tried it I never used quite enough (kind of got tired of pumping and worried I’d have nothing left in the bottle for next time).

Then you have to massage into hair for at least three-five minutes; again I got tired and probably didn’t massage for long enough so never quite achieved the right effect.

Hmmm, I persevered and tried again.

This time I followed the instructions to the letter. Much better! I used the recommended number of pumps so there was enough product to move around the scalp and through the lengths of hair; adding a little bit of water helped with the consistency. I also tried splitting the recommended amount between two rounds of washing, that was also an excellent tip.

I felt like I’d cracked the co-washing thing – massage scalp deeply, allow it to settle for a few minutes and don’t expect the same washing experience as with a shampoo – this is nothing like shampooing so it’s best not to compare. Even the results are different.

Once I got it right, the results were amazing – very shiny and very soft hair but not at all limp, like you might expect. This was plumped-up soft and full of life. I don’t have thick, dry or curly hair – it’s actually quite fine but lots of it – and this made it feel thicker and fuller. (To keep the experiment real, I made no difference to styling: I rough blow-dried and tied in a bun as usual and shook it all out when fully dry).

1 month later….. At first, I couldn’t co-wash all the time because I was still used to the squeaky clean feeling of conventional shampoo. But then I saw how well my hair was looking and feeling and found I was washing less frequently too.

With WEN my hair genuinely stays fresher, fuller and cleaner for longer, with no limpness for several more days than normal shampoo – that’s that bit I love the most. Now I find it hard to reach for shampoo again as I know it’s not as kind to hair and my hair won’t stay as fresh for so long.

Since the experiment started I’ve also tried Ojon Cleansing Conditioner and new Purely Perfect Creme Cleanser (review to follow) and now I only go back to shampoo occasionally. I genuinely believe cleansing conditioners are the way forward – they’re so much kinder on hair, because they don’t contain synthetic foaming agents, and make a statement with impressive results.

Another great conditioning product to try – Ogario Restore and Shine Hair Masque. This amazing product has been winning awards all over the place in recent months and well-deserved too: ingredients lean on the natural and botanical – avocado oil, lavender, and eight essential oils – and even the protein complex that’s exclusively created by the brand, is a mixture of plant-derived proteins. So hair is basically getting a really good feed.

ogario_restore_shine-hair-masque

Again, results are very very shiny and soft hair – almost like you can’t believe it’s your own hair. This product has also been recommended for co-washing but I’m yet to try.

What price great hair? Well, neither come in at high street prices (Wen is £26.95 and Ogario is £26.50) but they will last for a really long time and whether you use them for co-washing or normal conditioning, you’ll have genuinely great hair in return (none of this fake silicone shine). So not a bad deal really.