* What: Organic salon and spa that uses all natural products
* Company: Banana Tree Salon
* Location: 6116 Shallowford Road Suite 202
* How it's green: By using products free of formaldehyde, ammonia, plastic and parabens, the organic services offered at Banana Tree Salon keep harmful chemicals from going down the drain or absorbing into the customer's skin, said owner and stylist Angela Oliver. The salon offers services such as hair cuts, color treatments, keratin smoothing treatments, facials and waxing, that all use certified organic products containing natural products.
* How long will it last: Oliver said based on her experience, the organic hair color lasts longer than traditional hair color, usually by several weeks.
* Why do it this way? After more than 20 years styling hair, Oliver said she was tired of the adverse reactions she had to products loaded with chemicals. "My hands would break out when I used them," she said. "And sometimes I'd have a hard time breathing with all the ammonia." Oliver said the purpose of her salon is to give people an option for a healthier and more environmentally friendly way of styling their hair.
* Plans for expanding: Though Banana Tree Salon has been open less than a month, Oliver already has plans to open a downtown location within the next eight months, and hopes to eventually open locations in several surrounding cities, including Nashville, Birmingham and Atlanta.
* Is environmentalism an essential part of the business and why? Oliver and her husband, Terry, said the essential part of the business focuses around providing a healthier way to treat hair and skin, but the benefits to the environment are also important. "It's not just what you do at the salon, it's what you do every day," Terry Oliver said. "That's why all of our skin care and hair products are chemical free."
-- Compiled by staff writer Brittany Cofer, firstname.lastname@example.org, 423-757-6476. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/brittanycofer.