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Recycled Human Hair Chair

— December 18, 2006 — Eco
So you want to declare your undying love to someone very close and want something which will be both individual and ever-lasting; then start saving a few dollars more a week and discreetly collect all the hair that your special friend discards and you'll be well on your way to your own Pilius X – the ergonomic chair made from human hair.

The 'Stiletto chair' is the invention of Ronald Thomson, ex-hair stylist to celebrities and famed beauties while working for the likes of London superstar hairdressers' John Frieda and Nicky Clarke.

His prototype was made from 4.5 pounds of discarded hair sweep up in barbershops and hairdressers of London. The 49 year old Thompson found his inspiration while on the set of a movie.

“As part of my course I was doing a work placement on the set of the Batman Begins movie and, as you do on placement, was sweeping the floors which reminded me of my hairdressing days,” he said. “I picked up a piece of fibreglass, which snapped when I stretched it. Then I did the same with a strand of hair, which didn't. That sparked my thinking about how we could make use of all this spare hair to make a stronger fibreglass-type product that is environmentally friendly and sustainable.”

He hopes that his eco-friendly alternative to fibreglass will find a use in additional products, such as structural beams, shoes, clothing, mascara, and boat parts.

"This free, sustainable and abundant resource can be molded into any shape and mixed with any matrix," said Thompson.

"It is versatile, waterproof, non-conductive, corrosion free, fire resistant, tough, strong, durable and is able to compete with products, such as medium-density fiberboard, fiberglass, polymers and aluminium," he added.

Add to this the fact you can, like ordinary hair, dye it into any color you like and the fact that human hair is super strong with a head of hair capable of supporting over 13 tons, you begin to get an idea of the potential for recycled hair products.

Back to the idea of gifting your very own recycled human hair chair – It would take the average person 46 years to collect enough chair to make a single chair! So they need to be a very, very, special friend.

The upside is this is one raw material which is not going to disappear.

"The average salon produces this amount of hair cuttings every two weeks," he explained. "Well over 220,000 tons are produced in the United Kingdom per year, while millions of tons are produced worldwide each year."

The prototype human hair chair, which is coated with bronze, is priced at just over $15,000. But don't be discouraged to soon as Thompson is looking to develop less expensive models; and you never know, he may even branch out into other areas so the individual human hair gift may be available the not too distant future.