Friday, January 4, 2013

Hair ties should not be a "consumable" product

This morning, like most mornings, I did my hair for work, which involves four elastics in order to keep it all out of my face. Only today, I had a hard time finding four elastics. They are pretty standard with an elastic core and a polyester covering. It didn't seem like that long ago that I bought a pack of 30 tiny elastics and 15 big ones.

Every time I have to buy something, I try to think of how I can go about finding the most eco-friendly option. Elastic (probably not natural rubber) and polyester are not biodegradable materials. If it takes such a short amount of time to go through 15 large hair ties due to over stretching, breaking or losing them, it's time to find a different option.

So what do I do? Google it!! There are tones of websites with so-called environmentally friendly hair ties, but pretty much every one I found makes that claim with "recycled materials". Okay, so using recycled materials is slightly better than using raw, but that means that someone needed the raw material in the first place. They probably feel better about using new material knowing that it will be recycled into something else when they're done, but it still creates the need for new plastic. I could not find one place claiming to have natural rubber and/or organic cotton or hemp. Or something biodegradable. That's what I was hoping for.

So I guess, before my last little stash of elastics dies, I should find some natural rubber bands and sew some cotton cloth over them for some homemade scrunchies. Unless anyone can give me some ideas of good earth friendly hair tie options?


  1. Ooh. That's a tough one. But there must be something. Hmmmm.....

  2. There's always braided cord - predates hair elastics, biodegrades, etc.

    Loop braiding and kumihimo produce nice firm cord with enough texture to grab reasonably. I'll agree it's more fiddly to secure, but practice should help with that...

    I'm thinking of trying it myself - getting sick of the covered elastics constantly breaking. They're getting too expensive to use half the package 2-5 times before finding the 3 non-defective ones...

    I'm also a big fan of hair sticks - I have a set of acrylic ones I've used since 1998, but prefer wooden or metal.