Training and education
According to L’Oréal, the future of hairdressing salons will be a mix of technology and ecology. In order to illustrate this conviction, the world leader in the cosmetics market, just opened its first Green Academy in Madrid. The main purpose highlighted by the group is to improve awareness and to increase familiarity with: “with environmental values and sustainability among professionals in this sector.” The project stems from the Professional Products Division of the company marketing the L’Oréal Professionnel, Kérastase, Kéraskin, Redken, Matrix and Pureology brands for hairdressers.
This eco-sustainable Academy is located at the company’s headquarters in Madrid. The location will devoted to the training of Spanish professionals about the use of L’Oréal products. According to the cosmetics giant, which claims a 30% share of the market in the country, more than a half of the 35,000 Spanish hairdressing salons, distribute and use its products
In addition to this training purpose, the L’Oréal’s Green Academy is also seeking to instil future generations of professionals in this sector with respect for the environment – according to L’Oréal estimates, more than 8,000 hairdressers will be trained here each year.
L’Oréal’s Green Academy pays special importance to recycling products. It features the so-called recycling wall, a glass panel on which to deposit all containers used in the centre’s day-to-day activities: plastic, paper, card, aerosols, glass and aluminium.
The harnessing and re-use of water take on a leading role in this project, through a display of recycled water exhibited in a public area for contemplation as well as the raising of awareness about the use of water.
In order to decrease water consumption, the flow rate of the hair-washing nozzles has been reduced notably.
Concerning energy consumption, 80% of which is due to the site heating and to hair drying, L’Oréal’s Professional Products Division is working with the industry to offer hairdressers solutions with a lower energy impact. Specifically, L’Oréal is studying with a manufacturer the design of a hairdryer that will last 5 times as long, and with more power but the same consumption as a conventional dryer and able to finish the work more quickly, with the subsequent savings in energy.
Similarly, the academy’s air temperature is controlled through the application of “solar cooling”, a technology allowing the integration of heating, cooling and hot water into a single system.
A very specific attention was also paid to the materials used for fitting the facility: FSC certified wood, 100%-recyclable steel, recycled aluminium, panels made from 65% fir fibres and 35% mineral agglomerates, as well as photocatalytic ceramics and paint that are anti-pollutant, self-cleaning and antibacterial.
Furthermore, environmentally-friendly materials have been used in all joinery work. The furniture and part of the flooring have been made from ecomat, a material obtained from recycled plastic combined with olive pits. The panels used in the walls are made from gypsum and cellulose fibre obtained from recycled paper.
The opening of the Green Academy is part of L’Oréal’s sustainability strategy that features three fundamental long-term targets for the group’s factories and distribution centres between 2005 and 2015: a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, in water for each finished product and in waste generated by each finished product.
Some of the company’s prime examples in the field of sustainability and respect for the environment can be found in its Burgos factory, which has set itself the goal of being CO2 emissions-neutral by 2015, and it is also encouraging the inhouse generation of energy: the factory at Libramont (Belgium) inaugurated its new biogas centre last year to ensure the plant uses 100% green energy and is carbon- neutral.