Be Safer (and Greener) When You Shave – It’s Easy!
Do you shave? Love it or hate it (I fall into the latter category), you may be creating more waste than you realize. Old razor blades, empty cans of shaving cream….
Instead, find out how to be more green and eco-friendly, and save money too while you’re helping to save the planet.
First we’ll look at shaving creams, and then at the razors.
Commercial shaving creams contain nasty chemicals and endocrine disrupters such as sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulphate (SLES). Plus, they’re packaged in throwaway cans.
For a cleaner, greener shave, make your own natural shaving cream and store in a reusable container. No packaging, no nasty chemicals.
The simplest option is just soap and water. Try it – you really don’t need lathered cream to get the job done!
Alternatively, use this recipe:
- 1/2 cup oil (olive or grapeseed oil is perfect)
- 1/4 cup liquid Castile soap
- 1/4 cup honey
If you wish, add several drops of your favourite essential oil for fragrance. Simply mix them all together and store – easy!
Razors – Ditch the Disposables
Sure, they’re convenient – but they’re also pretty much impossible to recycle. Some 2 billion disposable razors are thrown away each year in the US alone. (Yes, 2 billion). That’s a lot of landfill.
And even though they seem to be cheap, when you consider that they don’t last very long and you need to replace them frequently, they actually work out to be quite expensive.
But you need a blade if you’re going to shave, so what can you do to be more green and ecofriendly?
Here are some options:
Reusable Plastic Razors
These are slightly better than full disposables – you keep the plastic handle and just replace the blades. But you’re still disposing of blades, and it’s unlikely you’ll save money. Plus, the replacement blades often come in lots of packaging.
Some plastic razors are made from 100% recycled plastic so they’re better than using new resources. Make sure they are fully recyclable after use. Some brands also use packaging made of renewable materials – and some can be reused as a travel case.
Old-Fashioned Safety Razor
You can still buy the old-fashioned safety razors that your father or grandfather used – and the good news is that the double-edged blades are sold with little packaging and can be recycled. (Check if your local recycler accepts used blades, or drop them off at a scrap-metal recycler). You’ll save money this way, and reduce your waste!
Even better, consider a straight-edge razor – a fabulously sharp folding blade with a handle. The proper old-fashioned ones are just about waste-free – and you get a really close shave.
On the down side they’re expensive to buy – but there are no future costs because you don’t replace anything (no blades, no packaging, no recurring costs).
You’ll need to sharpen or hone the blade every now and again, and keep it clean and dry, but it should last for years, if not a lifetime.
These can be expensive to buy initially, but you’ll only need to replace the blades every couple of years (if you look after them properly). Yes, there’s some waste, but it’s offset by not using water every day to shave.
Consider a solar-powered shaver so you’re not using fossil-fuel-produced electricity.
You can easily reduce your waste – and so be more green and ecofriendly – if you ditch the disposable razors and instead choose one of the many alternatives available today. They may cost more up front but you won’t have to keep buying and buying replacements. And it’s easy to avoid shaving cream too. You’ll save money as well as the planet!
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P.S. Don’t forget to download your free green living handbook “Live Well, Live Green” here.