This year especially, I’ve been bombarded by former and current clients, coworkers and colleagues asking that I share how I plan to fight plastic usage, and what can we all do about it. Having worked in spa and wellness for more than 25 years, I believe the answer is simple.
First, we need to admit that it’s an issue and that there’s only so much one can do. We also need to make peace with the fact that plastic is part of our lives; we wouldn’t be here today without its many forms, and it does indeed make life easier. Still, we can all do something—no matter how minimal. Here is how and why your spa can reduce its plastic use.
Spa and wellness professionals must work around the enormous amount of packaging and plastics used on a daily basis for wrapping, containing or storing the items we need for everyday duties. Ensure you use appropriate bins to separate anything that can be recycled. If your business is in or near an area where plastic can be recycled, ensure you contact the relevant organizations; even if there’s a fee, it’s an investment for the future of our planet.
A little investigation into the products used at the spa can make a huge difference. Work with companies and vendors that have a similar mission to protect our planet. Seek out partners who use only the packaging that’s necessary for each product, or that can be recycled. Further, find vendors that offer reusable options. For example, a lot of spa backbar and other product come in large sizes, allowing you to simply refill smaller containers and other dispensers.
There are also better types of containers and packaging that are less harmful to the environment once disposed. More eco-friendly options include glass and reusable containers that, after the product has been used up, can be repurposed as dispensers for soap, detergents, diffusers and more.
Or, rather than purchasing mass-produced products, you can create in-house offerings, such as scrubs, essences and perfumes that use local plants and flowers mixed with pure essential oils. If you have the space, set aside a small parcel of land to farm some of the typical spa ingredients like herbs and aloe vera. This allows the spa to avoid over-packaged products with the added benefit of using totally biodegradable ingredients.
Rocco Bova is a passionate hotelier with more than 25 years of international experience in world class hotels. He is a GSN Planet board member and an advocate of sustainability. Currently, Bova works in northern Mexico, developing a touristic project that will focus on the beauty of the desert and preserve one of the most unique natural areas of North America.