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How Aveda is Leading the Charge for Sustainable Haircare this Earth Month

It's Earth Month! Which means it’s the perfect time to explore sustainable beauty, and what better way to delve into the details of what it means to be a sustainable than with Aveda?   

At Aveda, it's not just another haircare brand. It's driven by a mission to change perceptions of beauty, focusing on cruelty-free products. But hey, don't just take their word for it; let's hear from the brains behind the operations from a People, Planet and Product lens. Whether you're a sustainability pro or just starting out on your eco-friendly journey, consider this your personal invitation to join us as we explore the exciting world of cruelty-free beauty with Aveda. Get ready – your hair and the planet are in for a treat!  



Q&A With David Hutchinson

(Senior Vice President, Global Marketing, AVEDA)  

How did the Aveda brand start and how does it differentiate from other haircare brands on the market? 

Aveda was founded on a mission to care for the world over 40 years ago. Our mission is the fabric of our DNA, and to this day it’s woven into everything we do and every decision we make at Aveda. Aveda has a deep history of sustainability, from clean ingredients to responsible manufacturing and thoughtful packaging; the brand was a pioneer in the sustainability space and continues to set new standards in beauty today. We often refer to Aveda as a “no-compromise” brand, meaning today you can find products that are high-performance, plant-powered, vegan and cruelty-free, all rooted in a mission of environmental care and responsibility. Aveda differentiates by offering cruelty-free, plant-based formulas that prioritise both hair health and environmental sustainability. 


Why should consumers care about supporting vegan brands, for both the planet and with their haircare products? 

Consumers should support vegan and brands like Aveda for their haircare products because it reduces the demand for animal-derived ingredients, benefiting the planet by mitigating environmental effects. Aveda's commitment to sustainability extends beyond veganism, encompassing responsible ingredient sourcing, manufacturing processes powered by renewable energy, sustainable packaging, and charitable initiatives focused on clean water. This holistic approach aligns with consumers' growing awareness and desire for cruelty-free and eco-friendly products, contributing to a collective mission of caring for the world and its inhabitants. When we say sustainability and a mission to care for world is in the DNA of our brand and engrained in everything we do at Aveda, we really mean it! 




Q&A With Melissa Chelminiak

(Director, Mission Partnerships And Engagement, AVEDA)

What does it mean to have B-corp and Leaping Bunny certifications?  

Aveda Corporation earning its B Corp Certification last year is a huge milestone for the brand. This recognition signifies our adherence to rigorous standards in social and environmental performance, as well as transparency and accountability. It solidifies Aveda's dedication to our mission and showcases that our practices align with B Lab's stringent criteria. Sustainability guides every decision we make, and maintaining our B Corp status is paramount as we propel both our brand and the beauty industry forward.  


Aveda has opposed animal testing since its founding in 1978 and became approved under the Cruelty Free International Leaping Bunny Programme two years ago. To obtain Leaping Bunny approval, Cruelty Free International has verified that Aveda does not conduct or commission animal tests for its products, raw materials, and ingredients. The brand underwent a rigorous multi-year review process with Cruelty Free International to verify that its suppliers and manufacturers comply with all Leaping Bunny criteria for its products and ingredients. To maintain approval under the Leaping Bunny Programme, Aveda will be audited every 12 months by Cruelty Free International to ensure continued compliance. 


Our commitment extends to sustainable packaging, prioritising post-consumer recycled materials. Our primary focus lies in maximising the use of recycled materials in our packaging, promoting circular solutions. We encourage our community and beyond to join us in advancing circularity by recycling whenever possible. 


What is Aveda doing on-the-ground to actively close the loop and support meaningful social programs? 

 One of the many ways we live our Aveda Mission is through our core social focus of providing and protecting clean water. For 25 years, every April during what we call Aveda Earth Month, our dedicated employees, our network of Salons/spas, Institutes and Experience Centers, and our customers have come together to raise awareness and funds for this critically important cause. It’s a time when we educate, engage, and celebrate the difference we can make with our Aveda Mission as our guide.  


Since 1999, we have raised over $71M through Aveda Earth Month to support our nonprofit clean water partners, and these funds have done a world of good. Over 1.5M people in need now have access to clean and safe water, and we help protect thousands of watersheds in the communities where we work and live. 


In Australia, since 2021, we have worked with local nonprofit partner, Take 3 for the Sea, with a goal to stop plastic pollution to help protect our environment.  Their message to take 3 pieces of rubbish with you when you leave the beach, waterway (or anywhere) to make a difference, has sparked a global movement that encourages everyone to get involved and help protect our oceans from plastic pollution. With every purchase of our limited edition bontanical repair™ overnight serum, Aveda Australia will donate $10 AUD* to our local charity partner, Take 3 for the Sea, to help fund education that will assist in ending plastic pollution. We look forward to growing our impact during our upcoming Earth Month campaign this April.  




Q&A With Christine Hall

(Vice President, Research & Development Hair Care, Color, & Innovation, The Estee Lauder Companies)

Are vegan haircare ingredients as effective as non-vegan/chemical-based haircare products? 

You’d be surprised at how powerful plants can be! Potent plant actives can power high performance products and can perform just as well – or even better – than synthetic alternatives. It does take effort and expertise to find the right ingredients to deliver prestige performance. Our formulation approach always starts with our in-house pharmacognosists, who are scientists dedicated to the study of how plants and other natural ingredients can benefit health and well-being. Our pharmacognosists identify powerful plant extracts – sometimes screening thousands of botanical actives – before landing on those that will provide the powerful benefits we want to provide in our products. They also identify the best way to extract plants for the desired benefit. Different extraction techniques deliver different benefits. An example of our efforts is the all day (or night) anti-oxidant protection of Aveda Invati Advanced™ Scalp Revitalizer or Aveda Scalp Solutions Overnight Recovery Serum. In both products the antioxidant protection is delivered by a combination of botanical extracts rather than synthetic ingredients. An example of our search for naturally derived vegan ingredients is glucosamine, used in both Aveda Invati Advanced™ Scalp Revitalizer and Aveda Scalp Solutions Overnight Recovery Serum. Glucosamine is gentle but effective exfoliant. Typically, glucosamine is derived from shellfish shells. Aveda sourced a glucosamine created via fermentation, due to our vegan pledge. 



Where are Aveda products made and what is the manufacturing plant like? 

Aveda was the first beauty company to manufacture with 100% wind power at its primary facility through renewable energy credits and carbon offsets. Aveda’s Minnesota headquarters, where the brand’s primary manufacturing facility is located, houses a 3.6 acre, 900kW ground-mounted solar array that provides 50% of the manufacturing facility’s annual energy demand and offsets more than 1,100 of CO2 per year. The remaining energy usage is offset through wind power renewable energy credits and carbon offsets.  

Research & Development shares this site with Manufacturing. Being together means we can work together more effectively to create and manufacture Aveda products. We also create and make our unique Aveda aromas in house with naturally derived ingredients.   


How did Aveda formulate Botanical Repair and how does this differentiate from typical non-vegan bond-building alternatives? 

Aveda’s PhD Chemists, with disciplines in Organic Chemistry, Polymer Chemistry and Pharmacognosy, searched the globe for efficacious plant technologies that can provide powerful deep repair for damaged hair. This team of experts identified a multi-pronged approach, creating 3 different technologies that work synergistically to treat the 3 key layers of hair for deep repair from the inside out. 


Damage repair is an extremely sought-after benefit for our guests, and our team is always researching and studying new technologies and natural ingredients to address this need. Our work begins with a fundamental understanding of how and where hair is damaged.  Botanical Repair took us 6 years to develop, because we wanted to address the three key layers of hair and because we were committed to delivering the strongest-possible benefit using ingredients from nature. The result is a 93% naturally derived collection with powerful plant technologies that address each layer.  Botanical Repair leverages a molecular plant technology that penetrates to build bonds within the cortext, a powerful blend of avocado, Sacha inchi and green tea oils to smooth the cuticle, and a naturally derived polymer mimics the benefits of the f layer.   


Instead of using silicones, Botanical Repair, where relevant, is formulated with a silicone-free technology that mimics the conditioning performance of silicones using naturally derived ingredients, including candelilla wax and olive-derived conditioners. Aveda’s R&D Chemists worked through countless combinations before discovering this unique, proprietary blend. 


Botanical Repair features a naturally derived fresh, light floral, herbal aroma containing certified organic ylang-ylang, rose and marjoram essential oils, leaves hair smelling as indulgent as it looks and feels.  



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posted by

Jasmine Charteris on April 05, 2024



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