Here's how Cross Gates salon Therapy Rooms is helping to save the planet one haircut at a time
Therapy Rooms is a hair and beauty salon with a difference.
Opened in Cross Gates in 2019, the salon is committed to doing its bit to save the planet - recycling up to 95 per cent of its waste.
Its owner Kathryn Newhouse joined the Salon Sustainability scheme last year after reflecting on how she could cut back on the salon's carbon footprint.
The changes have been well received by her clients who can now enjoy coffees, chocolates and haircare products from sustainable and local brands.
"Lockdown has had its challenges, but it's been positive for me as a business owner," Kathryn, 28, told the Yorkshire Evening Post.
"Normally the business runs you, but it's allowed me to pause and look into what I want to achieve out of the business."
Kathryn has swapped big brands for eco-friendly suppliers and now recycles chemicals, PPE and even hair.
The salon uses MUK products, a small distributor that sells its products in recyclable aluminium cans, and a skincare company that recycles its empty bottles.
Kathryn added: “We’re really conscious about our environmental impact, especially with how much plastic we’ve used with PPE - our bins have been overflowing.
"Even though we still need to follow the rules, it’s about making those small changes where we can."
Like many salons in Leeds, Kathryn's team have been run off their feet since they reopened in April.
The hair and beauty industry has been hit hard by lockdowns and Kathryn is expanding her businesses to adapt to the changing expectations of clients.
On the salon's 'menu' are hair treatments, dermaplanning and a range of spa treatments including waxing, tanning and lashes.
Kathryn said: "Everyone wanted a haircut at the same time when we came out of lockdown, so it’s been crazy over the last few weeks. But I’ve got a great team and everyone has pulled through.
“People are now looking for an experience, a social aspect to their appointment.
"It’s not just a cut and blow-dry or getting your nails done, it’s the entire experience - clients are spending money to get that feeling.
"We've been working on how we can provide that to our guests, making them feel part of a community in our salon.
"All our guests get a welcome box which tells them a little about us, with chocolate and a bamboo pen. It’s little things like that which help to elevate the service.”
Therapy Rooms has teamed up with other Leeds businesses, offering loose leaf tea from York Road coffee shop Cielo and selling candles from a local supplier.
Kathryn has been delighted to see Cross Gates spring back to life and praised the area's community spirit.
“For my business to thrive, I rely on local people using me," Kathryn added.
"There’s enough business to go around and everyone has their individual selling point, whether that’s a bar, restaurant or salon.
"It’s nice that the little guys are working together to help the community thrive.
“It’s baby steps and we’re only a young business, but we’re committed to making those tiny steps to making the guest experience the best it can be, as well as supporting local people and reducing our carbon footprint.”
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