Santa Barbara’s Salon Patine, located on upper State Street, has taken an inventive, practical approach to cleaning the Gulf of Mexico of the oil that now permeates it.

In collaboration with Pureology Serious Color Care, which is also making a conscious effort to help the environment, Salon Patine will be collecting three boxes of hair clippings every week to be fashioned into “hair booms,” two-foot by half-foot-long nylon nets containing hair clippings which will skim the Gulf’s waters to collect oil.

Matter of Trust, the organization that actually collects these hair clippings and fashions the booms, hopes to replicate the same effect hair has on the oil on your head with the oil in the sea.

The booms produced by Matter of Trust are made from recycled nylon, human hair and pet hair, including hair from llamas and alpacas. Salons, groomers, or just helpful individuals from around the world are donating their hair to this organization to aid in the oil spill effort.

The booms, which are placed all over the Gulf Coast either in clusters or long, tied lines, reportedly prove to be far more effective than conventional synthetic booms because the weight of the hair allows them to sit deeper in the water, thus soaking up more oil than a lightweight boom.

Shae Kalyani, vice president of marketing for Pureology, expresses her gratitude for Salon Patine’s effort to help the environment: “Having Salon Patine on board and showing their support for this important cause is extremely impactful and significantly helps raise awareness to the environmental issues impacting our everyday lives”.

Pureology’s effort to clean up the coast is a result of Global Green, a cochair of the Santa Barbara local Green Collaborative, a network of 65 organizations working together to build a green economy in Louisiana.

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