Shop Talk

Compassion without style sacrifice – Ottawa’s first cruelty-free hair salon

Recently opened Salon Vert is the first of its kind, offering 100 per cent cruelty-free and vegan services and products. At the helm is Cara McEachern who has over eight years experience. Salon Vert allows the environmentally conscious client to keep the environment in mind without compromising their look (McEachern provides all traditional hair styling and treatments, including Ombre and Balayage services – all the rage right now). She gives us a bit of insight into her little piece of green. #VeganHairDontCare.

Tell me about your passion for Salon Vert. Where did it come from? Are you a lover of animals/the environment? Vegan? Have lots of pets?

I’ve always been a huge animal lover my whole life, growing up in the country, in Northern Ontario, with lots of pets and animals around me. I began to view animals more as friends and not food at a young age and quickly became vegetarian and then eventually vegan. Protecting animals and the environment has always been extremely important to me. Therefore, working in an environment that is completely cruelty-free and vegan is something I had been searching for, for a long time. Sadly there are not many options out there. In fact there are none. So I decided to create the environment for myself!

Can you explain what it means to be 100% cruelty-free?

There are no products in my salon – from my hand soaps and cleaners to the styling and colouring products used on my clients – that have been tested on animals. All the companies I buy from are North American and only insource and outsource within North America. None of the companies that I buy from condone animal testing. No bunnies were harmed in the making of beauty in my salon!

Describe some of the other environmentally efficient measures at the salon.

All products and containers used in my salon are either recyclable or biodegradable. All outlets are hydro-efficient so if I’m not using my tools no power is being used whatsoever!  Eighty-five per cent of the products I use are also organic and not harmful to the environment.

Do your alternative measures mean different results when it comes to hair treatment and colouring?

Only positive differences. Because I use an ammonia-free colour line that is made of 91 per cent ingredients of natural origin, it is completely safe for clients who are allergic to colour [dyes], who are pregnant or on medication, and even for those who are going through radiation or chemotherapy. Because the line is enriched with argan oil, it leaves the hair looking and feeling much shinier and healthier.

Have you found that your client base is very excited about your cruelty-free practices?

Absolutely. My clientele has tripled since I’ve opened, just based on the fact that people want the peace of mind going somewhere that offers cruelty-free products and services.

Salon Vert, 225 Metcalfe St., 613-266-1109