Earth Month - 10 years of clean water


In April of each year since 1999, our Aveda network of salons, spas, Aveda Institutes and Experience Centers, dedicated beauty industry professionals, employees, and guests celebrate Earth Month, a month-long campaign with a simple mission to love, celebrate and raise funds to protect people, animals and the environment with a special focus on protecting clean water. Earth Month combines fund-raising with education and engagement around the Aveda Mission to deepen our commitment to care for the world we live in. Aveda donates all proceeds from the $12 suggested retail price of Light the Way™ candles to Global Greengrants Fund, while grassroots activities organized by our local salons, Institutes and Experience Centers throughout the Aveda network raise funds for local and regional nonprofit organizations.

In 2016, Earth Month raised $6.4 million, bringing the total fundraising since the program’s inception in 1999 to $50 million, of which $37 million has been raised by grassroots activities and events, representing an astounding commitment by the global Aveda network of concerned salon owners, beauty professionals, Aveda educators, Aveda Institute students and staff, Experience Center retail team members and their guests. The funds raised by the Aveda network support the work of Aveda’s Earth Month Partners: 70 nonprofit organizations working to protect clean water around the world.

Aveda Earth Month began as a way for Aveda celebrate Earth Day and recognize its responsibility to give back to the Earth and the communities that the company depends on as a business. In the early years, the focus of Earth Month was on protecting biodiversity and defending critical habitats such as ancient forests, combatting climate change, and protecting endangered species. In 2007, we began to focus on protecting water resources and access to clean water.

Melissa Chelminiak, Aveda Director of Mission, Partner and Stakeholder Engagement, continues:

“As a vital ingredient in Aveda products, a critical resource in both Aveda manufacturing and the success of our Aveda network salons and spas, and an essential resource for all life on earth, we believe protecting clean water is our responsibility. In 2016, we celebrated 10 years of raising funds to protect and support global and local water-related issues and concerns through network-wide education and engagement, and we remain committed to continuing this important focus in the future.

“The success of Aveda’s Earth Month campaign is due to the enormous dedication, passion, and love of our individual Aveda network members. Each and every grassroots effort, salon service offering, or individual donation is one piece of the larger panorama and together create amazing accomplishments. We continue to drive more fruitful Aveda network relationships and use our unique and long-standing affiliations with our nonprofit partners, to increase our impact through the Earth Month campaign year after year. Our Earth Month partners help fuel activism, raise consciousness about protecting the health of the planet, and move people to action.”





Network Events for Clean Water

In fiscal year 2016, 72% of global concept salons and 90% of lifestyle salons participated in Earth Month. The primary fund-raiser used by these network members is Appointments for Clean WaterSM, in which a portion of the proceeds from select beauty and wellness services is donated to local Earth Month partner organizations. In Washington, for example, funds raised this year went to Puget Soundkeeper to maintain a healthy, thriving Puget Sound ecosystem. In New Jersey and New York, funds raised went to Clean Ocean Action to improve the degraded water quality of the marine waters from Cape May, New Jersey to Montauk, New York.

Grassroots Aveda network efforts across the world were particularly successful and eye-catching. One such campaign, Catwalks for Water, raised $585,000 at events across the globe including the United States, Canada and Japan. Upcycled, artistic fashion came to life on the catwalks by repurposing discarded Aveda hair color tubes, boxes, Aveda Shammy Cloths, perming rods and other items. Numerous other creative Aveda network charity events were also held such as silent auctions, raffles, and in-store donations, all contributing to Aveda’s most successful Earth Month yet.

Light the Way™

Our limited-edition Light the Way™ candle, launched in 2006 originally to raise money for protecting endangered species, has generated a total of $13 million for Earth Month. Candle sales for fiscal year 2015 and 2016 averaged almost $2 million per year and were donated exclusively to the Global Greengrants Fund (GGF) for water-related projects supporting grassroots community-level organizations around the globe working to protect, restore and transform their environment. By the end of FY 2016, the Light the Way candle program has provided the funding for GGF to make over 1,800 grants in more than 85 countries benefitting more than 900,000 lives-- by providing and protecting clean water!


Aveda Earth Month Milestones


Aveda was founded with the principles of a commitment to earth and community care.


Aveda becomes the first company to sign Ceres Principles, mobilizing leaders on climate changes and water scarcity.


Aveda’s first in-salon Earth Day event, a precursor to the Earth Month Campaign.


Aveda’s Earth Month Campaign debuts, raising funds for organizations combatting deforestation.


The Light the Way™ candle is launched, with 100% of proceeds donated to Earth Month Partners protecting endangered species. First Light the Way™ candle sales raise $520,000 and Earth Month fundraising reaches $1.5 million.


Aveda partners with Global Greengrants Fund, a leading environmental nonprofit organization, to support grassroots clean water projects around the world.


Aveda Cut-A-Thon wins Guinness World record for the most money raised for charity through haircuts in one day.


Aveda’s Earth Month Campaign reaches $44 million fund-raising milestone with $38 million directed to protect clean water projects globally and locally.


Aveda’s Earth Month Campaign celebrates 10 Years of Protecting Clean Water and reaches a cumulative Earth Month $50 million fund-raising milestone.


Aveda Earth Month Partners

Joint efforts among the Aveda network raised money for 70 nonprofit Earth Month Partners around the globe working to address a wide range of local water issues as of December 2016.



A Drop of Life Limited

Friends of Haystock Rock

Alliance for the Great Lakes

Gulf Restoration Network

American Rivers

Heal the Bay

Apalachicola Riverkeeper

Hoosier Environmental Council

Audubon Iowa

Idaho Rivers United

Audubon Kansas

Kentucky Waterways Alliance

Audubon Minnesota

Lake Champlain Committee

Audubon Missouri

League to Save Lake Tahoe

Audubon Nebraska

Lower Mississippi Riverkeeper

Audubon North Dakota

McKenzie River Trust

Audubon South Dakota

Natural Resources Council of Maine

Cahaba River Society

Ogeechee Riverkeeper

Cape Fear River Watch

Puget Soundkeeper

Catawba Riverkeeper

Rocky Mountain Field Institute

Chattahoochee Riverkeeper

Rogue Riverkeeper

Clark Fork Coalition

San Marcos River

Clean Ocean Action

Sierra Club Foundation - Ohio Chapter

Clean Water Fund California

Small Change Fund

Clean Water Fund Northeast

Spokane Riverkeeper

Columbia Riverkeeper

St. Johns Riverkeeper

Deschutes River Alliance

Surfrider Foundation

Eco Knights

Tennessee Clean Water Network

Environmental Advocates of New York

Western Resource Advocates

Environmental Defense Center

Wild Earth Guardians

Everglades Foundation

World Wildlife Fund

Forests Forever

Yadkin Riverkeeper


Water in the Rocky Mountain region and in the entire western part of the United States is becoming scarcer. Local water conservancy organization Western Resource Advocates (WRA) focuses on sustaining healthy rivers and lakes, and protecting western land and air through law, science, and economics. Melissa says, “Our Aveda network is very passionate about WRA.” Their mission of helping western communities and governments make smarter water choices for the benefit of a shared, sustainable future aligns with Aveda’s own Earth Month mission. She adds, “In 2016 WRA wanted to try a new approach to sharing information about what’s happening in the west related to freshwater protection, water conservation, and defending water for wildlife. It’s challenging to communicate this information in a way that raises people’s interest and also explains why Aveda cares about the cause. WRA came up with a cool campaign to connect water issues directly to our products. For example, Aveda’s Dry Remedy™ product line was linked to ‘dry rivers,’ which connected the concept that we need water to perform the services we offer. This campaign helped us raise the amazing funds we achieved this year. In preparation for our 2017 campaign, we shared this best practice with other Earth Month partners for inspiration on how to connect with our network and guests on a deeper level.”

In 2016, Aveda raised a total of $251,277 for Western Resource Advocates.


“Through our decade-long Earth Month partnership, Aveda has been a critical supporter of WRA’s mission to protect the West’s water. Together, we’ve raised awareness about clean water and the value of rivers, helped cities become more water-smart, saved fish species from extinction, and helped usher in a new era of stewardship for our most precious and life-giving resource: water.

“Aveda has helped us:

·       Team up with farmers, cities, state officials and federal agencies to protect healthy rivers for boating, sensitive fish species, and the environment in Colorado, Utah, Arizona and elsewhere.

·       Safeguard the Great Salt Lake ecosystem and the 8 million birds it supports by challenging illegal discharges of toxic pollutants, improving monitoring and water quality studies, and working with state agencies, sportsmen and others to protect habitat in the most sensitive areas of the lake.

·       Advance urban conservation, water recycling, private investment, and new land use policies to help cities become more “water smart” and place less pressure on our region’s rivers. Most recently, we co-led the successful effort to make residential rain barrels legal in Colorado for the first time.

·       Help keep water clean through analyzing water quality issues on federal land, opposing dirty fuels (e.g., oil shale and tar sands), and using the Clean Water Act to protect Great Salt Lake.”

“Thanks to the wholehearted support of Aveda salon owners, workers and guests, WRA has been able to creatively respond to some of the West’s toughest water challenges, generating real and measurable impact. We greatly value our Earth Month partnership and send our thanks to the entire Aveda community.”

Jon Goldin-Dubois, President, Western Resources Advocates


The Alliance for the Great Lakes is the largest organization dedicated solely to protecting the Great Lakes in North America. Earth Month donations help support the Alliance’s programs on local community education, policy advocacy, and first-hand remediation to keep local waterways clean. Our ongoing relationship and close communication meant that we had a ready partner to respond to the contaminated drinking water emergency in Flint, Michigan with 10% of funds raised by the Aveda network for the Alliance directed to local organizations working to remedy the situation.

Melissa observed that “The situation in Flint, Michigan was an important reminder for all of us that protecting clean water in the local communities where we live and work is more important now than ever before. We cannot take our clean drinking water for granted.”

In 2016, Aveda raised a total of $416,601 for the Alliance for the Great Lakes.

The Gulf Restoration Network is committed to uniting and empowering people to protect and restore the natural resources of the Gulf Region by addressing sewage and industrial water pollution, preventing wetland destruction, and protecting Florida’s rivers, waters and wetlands.

A priority issue for the Gulf Restoration Network since its founding in 1994 has been advocating for the health of the Mississippi River and reducing fertilizer pollution that causes the Dead Zone, an area of low oxygen that forms every summer in the Gulf of Mexico due to excessive nutrient runoff. GRN’s work includes seeking strong limits on nitrogen and phosphorus pollution in the Mississippi River and its tributaries; pushing for enforcement of permit requirements to limit what polluters put into the water; and advocating for changes to farm subsidies to reward good farm practices that minimize nitrogen runoff and avoid subsidizing pollution that creates the Dead Zone.

In 2016, Aveda raised a total of $301,052 for the Gulf Restoration Network.


Earth Month Internationally

As the largest fundraising campaign during the year, Earth Month attracts participation around the globe. Aveda’s network of salons, spas, Aveda Institutes and Experience Centers, dedicated beauty industry professionals, employees, and guests get creative and bring out their passion to give back.  Our partner, Global Greengrants Fund (GGF) is the means by which we engage with nonprofits around the world in the cause of protecting clean water.



Bantay Kalikasan

Singapore Environment Council


Team & Team International

Environmental Ethics Foundation of Taiwan, China

Utokapat Foundation

Global Greengrants Fund

WaterAid Sweden


Viva con Agua de St. Pauli

Para La Naturaleza

WaterAid Australia

Plastic Whale

WaterAid Canada


WaterAid Denmark

Save the Children Japan

WaterAid United Kingdom


During fiscal year 2016, our Asian colleagues and friends showcased their imagination for a good cause.

Taiwan, China

“Recycle Your Style” events were held at all Aveda salons and Experience Centers in Taiwan, China in April in the form of an internal competition. Aveda products, marketing materials, or waste containers were used to create accessories or store decorations. The result turned into great talking points to share with guests as a way to share Aveda’s Earth Month efforts. Beautiful necklaces, bracelets and hair decorations were worn by salon staff.


Catwalks for Water events are held throughout the world. The 2016 event held in Japan (below), was the first-ever Catwalk for Water produced by concept salons in Japan. Held at Yoyogi Park in Tokyo, the event took place during the biggest eco event in the city - Earth Day Tokyo 2016 - and was led by Aveda Japan Purefessional™ Masa Honda. Models showcased the stunning creativity and talent of Aveda Artists and students alike, using old Aveda Shammy Cloths, perming rods, umbrellas, Aveda Hair Color tubes and boxes, and more, all while raising funds and awareness for clean water initiatives.


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