The benefits of natural hair-care formulas and services

The benefits of natural hair-care formulas and services

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The benefits of natural hair-care formulas and services

When stocking up on hair-care products, especially during Earth Month, you may be wondering how you can make your routine more green. Enter the world of natural hair care, an option that can be kinder to us and to the planet.

The natural appeal

“For healthy hair, nothing beats natural and plant formulas,” says Vincent Bonhomme, owner of hair salon Jardin d’art et de coiffure in Montreal, natural colourist and trainer for Marcapar, a pioneering brand in the field of plant-based hair-care products. Why? Because these formulations eliminate a ton of irritants and chemicals commonly present in synthetic products, such as peroxide in chemical hair colours or formaldehyde in shampoos. A natural dye with plant-based pigments, on the other hand, will hydrate, nourish and coat the hair without attacking its integrity, and a shampoo sans toxic chemicals can keep your locks and the planet clean at the same time.

Natural vs. Synthetic 

Although Bonhomme advocates all-natural formulas for the health of our hair, the battle between natural and synthetic ingredients isn’t always black and white. “Just because an ingredient is synthetic doesn’t always mean it’s bad for you,” he says. For example, dehydroacetic acid, used as a preservative, is perfectly safe. Conversely, some natural ingredients can have negative effects on our bodies or the environment, from improperly diluted essential oils to deforestation stemming from coconut oil production. In short, when it comes to green beauty, a critical mind—and a little research—makes all the difference.

Pro tip

“Going from synthetic to natural formulas is a very personal journey that you have to do at your own pace. Be curious and make informed decisions.”

—Vincent Bonhomme, owner of the Jardin d’art et de coiffure hair salon, natural colourist
and trainer for Marcapar

Smart shopping


With endless hair-care options available in stores and online, it can be difficult to know which products and ingredients are more environmentally friendly than others. Read on to learn what to look for and what to avoid when filling your cart. 

What to avoid

Petroleum-based ingredients, such as toluene, mineral oil, petrolatum, phthalates and synthetic fragrances.

No to aerosols

These products contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which contribute to the formation of ozone and smog.

Ideally organic

Organic formulas skip the chemicals found in their traditional counterparts, which can make their way into ecosystems. Keep your eyes peeled for certifications like Ecocert
or Natrue, which can give you confidence that you’re making a better choice for your health and the environment.


For information at your fingertips, download EWG’s Healthy Living app or the Think Dirty app to get information about a product and its ingredients in just one click. 


more than 120 billion packages are generated each year from beauty and wellness industries, and too many of those packages end up in landfills. Here are three ways
to combat packaging waste. 

Refillable packaging

Whether filled at home or in-store, choosing products that can be refilled again and again can significantly reduce single-use packaging and plastic waste.

Less water

Most shampoos and conditioners are about 80 percent water, making them heavy, bulky and more difficult to transport. Opting for powder, bar or concentrated formulas helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and usually requires much less packaging.

Recycled and recyclable

Choose products packaged with post-consumer recycled materials that can be recycled again after you’re finished. Check online to learn what’s accepted in your community curbside recycling bin and what can be taken to a recycling centre. There are also organizations like Terracycle and Pact Collective that operate collection bins for beauty and wellness empties that are typically unable to be recycled through curbside programs. 

Our product picks



 1. ATTITUDE Leaves Bar Orange Cardamom Volumizing Conditioner, $15,
2. Carol’s daughter  Wash Day Delight Water-to-Foam Shampoo with Aloe, $16.50,
3. BKIND Moisture & Nourish Hair Mask, $62,
4. MYNI Wheat Straw Hair Brush, $15,
5. SHEAMOISTURE Papaya & Neroli All Day Frizz Control Milk Gel, $15, 


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The benefits of natural hair-care formulas and services