Sudu Hair has been open for four years, a member with Sustainable Salons for over two years and they have successfully built a culture that will last forever. Founded by stylist and colourist Suzie McDonald, the salon has gained a loyal clientele that rings true to Suzie’s value in the relationships she builds and peoples lives she touches.
Suzie’s ability to build relationships has led her to have a strong team that has grown to be like a family all while having fun on the job. They have also gained public recognition, receiving the Better Business People's Choice Award in 2018 for their efforts towards sustainability.
The team has unriddled the balance of running a successful business and giving back to the wider community through sharing their skills and time - all while rarely working more than two days in a row and never on weekends!
With a salon ethos to, ‘work smart, play hard and give back’, Suzie and her fellow stylist Amy Marsden walk the talk by opening up the salon doors every six weeks to provide women in vulnerable situations treatments including cut and colour, Keratin and eye brow waxing and tinting whilst the salon covers all costs. They are also sometimes able to give carepacks full of donations. By donating five hours of time they can see up to eight women between the two of them.
|Amy and Suzi blowdry a woman's hair.||Laura and Ebony giving a colour treatment.
When asked what motivates them to run these events on their days off Suzie replies, “We have the skillset and time that can empower these women. These salon open days allow the opportunity to perform small acts of kindness which give dignity and self worth to some of Australia’s most vulnerable women.”
The feedback from the guests has been positive and wide ranging. Often appointments end in hugs and tears of joy, and the team receive cards of thanks filled with so much gratitude. Some women will even stay back to help clean the salon after the service is finished.
Courtney Parsons, Team Leader from the Manly Waringah Women's Refuge also presented them a certificate, thanking the team. She said, "Women and children make contact with us at a time at a time when they are desperate, have very limited supports and possessions. It gives them reassurance that people in the community do care."
At their most recent event, the Sudu team gave hair and beauty treatments and they were also joined by their generous Davine's representative, Ebony.
“What we love most of all is watching these women leave the salon standing up taller, dignity intact and self confidence heightened,” reflects Suzie.
This month, the team has invited hairdressers from other salons to join their community outreach days and have noticed the growing interest of others being involved. Their hope is to reach as many salons as possible and to help them organise their own special day with their local refuge so together everyone can be a part of the movement.
|Care packs donated by Ebony from Davines
Along with their salon open days, the team at Sudu has been involved in Share the Dignity, a social enterprise which gives sanitary products to homeless women and fights for domestic violence victims across Australia. The team at Sudu were a collection point this year and ended up as the largest donor in the north shore this year!
Beyond charity work, the Sudu team also offers $50 off haircuts for anyone from the local netball club, and they donate $50 into the club. They also gift a haircut to any existing client from the netball club when they refer someone new to the salon.
The team at Sudu want to recruit other hairdressers to do their part, no matter the size, in helping one person at a time:
“It would be a shame to have a skillset so valuable and not do something good with it. We all know how great it feels after a hair-do, let’s come together and share that great feeling with others who really need it!” - Suzie McDonald
Our member's commitment to supporting their communities never fails to inspire us.
Sustainable Salons Australia provides the most comprehensive waste free systems to the professional hairdressing industry. We collect and recycle 95% of a salon’s waste and reward the salon for their recycling efforts!
Contact us here if you’d like to become a member of Sustainable Salons Australia.