We all know the mantra Reduce, Reuse, Recycle! It’s become synonymous with the trend to adopting eco-friendly habits and striving for a more sustainable planetary future.
Protecting natural resources has become an important factor at home and work. We cannot maintain our Earth’s ecosystems or continue to function as we do if more sustainable choices are not made. If harmful processes are maintained with no change, it is likely that we will run out of fossil fuels, huge numbers of animal species will become extinct, and the atmosphere will be irreparably damaged.
There is no doubt that building sustainability into your business will connect you to your clients in a much deeper and more meaningful way as well as help you attract new clients who want to make a difference by making sustainable lifestyle choices.
Have you heard of the term greenwashing?
I was shocked to discover this is such common practice that it’s been “named” but it’s important that you are aware of it and avoid it at all costs.Greenwashing is when a company focusses more on marketing and sending out the environmentally friendly message than actually committing and doing it. This can be irreparably damaging to your business.
I have a few ideas to share today on how to start your sustainability journey and, very important, to get your clients involved in the process.
1) Reduce laundry and communicate this from the start on your website, when the client checks in, in the change room and all areas where clients may use towels or gowns. I would go as far as issuing towels so the client thinks twice before asking for more towels. Don’t restrict the amount of linen they use, just get everyone thinking twice before reaching for a second towel. Whilst we are on linen, ensure your linen is organic and unbleached. Choose fabrics like bamboo or birch fiber.
2) Stop single use plastic in the spa. This means no plastic water bottles, no plastic single use cups. Offer clients a cash back incentive when they return their empty skincare containers and get your brand partners involved in this, and in effective recycling methods if they are not already doing this.
3) Support local trade. A huge step towards sustainability is supporting everything local as this goes a long way towards reducing your carbon footprint.
4) Use non-toxic and eco-friendly cleaning products and paints.
5) Add recycling bins in common areas with the three compartments for glass, plastic, paper and trash
6) Switch to energy efficient lighting and fittings throughout the spa.
7) Install low flow, water conserving toilets, taps, shower heads and sinks.
8) Make purchasing decisions with sustainability in mind. So, with wood for example, opt for recycled wood or wood from renewable forests. Remember that compressed board gets sprayed with harmful toxic chemicals.
9) Recycle water where possible.
10) Here’s an innovative idea, reduce the amount of deliveries made to your business by suppliers. Instead of ordering weekly, why not order monthly and perhaps work towards ordering every second month. This can dramatically reduce carbon footprint.
Make the decision to start somewhere and start TODAY. Speed of implementation is once again key! Appoint a sustainability officer in the business and let them drive initiatives.
Let’s all do our part to conserve our Earths Ecosystems.
The Sustainable Spa Association is a non-profit organisation established to assist spa operators in becoming an environmentally friendly force for change. They believe the spa industry has a responsibility to protect the world in which we live, and to take care of the natural resources which we rely so heavily upon. The natural world is at the heart of our industry, and by becoming a member of the Sustainable Spa Association, you are joining some of the world’s leading spas to commit to making change, maintaining best environmental practice, and being pioneers in the continued efforts towards environmental consciousness and sustainability.
The Sustainable Spa Association is an established network that is growing rapidly and they believe the spa industry should be a leading industry for environmental causes. Spa is about the essence of wellbeing, and this begins and ends with the natural world. It is our responsibility to ensure we are using the world’s natural resources as responsibly as possible, and not leaving a footprint for future generations. Wellbeing is the ultimate message, and they believe this should extend to wellbeing of the world around us.