Can hair weaves absorb the BP oil spill?

From Black Voices:

Used as either the butt of a joke or the subject of Chris Rock’s “Good Hair” documentary, hair weave hasn’t been taken seriously for years. However today, that changes as government officials are requesting just that to help in the containment efforts of the BP oil spill.

Hair is hydrophobic — is this why women don’t like to get their hair wet? — so it absorbs petroleum while water slides off. The technique was apparently discovered by an Alabama hair stylist named Phil McCrory, who found that the hundreds of thousands of pounds of weave are disposed of daily.

On the city of New Orleans website you can find a request for human hair, pet hair, weaves and wigs. The donated hair will be stuffed into the absorbant “booms” being used to soak up oil from the Gulf of Mexico. An employee of the Ritz Carlton hotel in New Orleans has begun a weave drive inspired by the group “Matter of Trust,” who asks for donations of not only hair, but also wool, nylons and, to either the surprise or chagrin of PETA, animal furs for oil soaking. According to the website, the group has weave coming in from Canada, England, Spain, France, Germany and Australia to help the effort.

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