I thought one of the best ways to kick off Plastic Free July was to talk about methods of shaving. Summer is hot, whether you are getting bikini ready or need to rid yourself of that winter beard, having a good razor is the most common method of hair removal.
I recently switched to a safety razor. It allows for a closer shave and is eco-friendly. The weight is a little more, since it is metal, and it is easier to cut yourself but it just takes time to get the hang of it. This particular razor was designed for women because the handler is longer than most. There are many brands out there that rank well as you can see here, go with what you feel will work best for you.
The safety razor will be more expensive upfront but it will pay off in the end because razor blades are so cheap. You can get these Shark blades (100 pack) for less than $7! A normal Venus or Gillette replacement pack can run anywhere from $17 to $22 for only 8. Most curbside recycling centers won’t take the blades because it’s not safe for the workers who might cut themselves coming across them. So you can purchase a blade bank to trash them after, but I personally don’t see the point in buying something for trashing purposes. I am using an old Altoids tin to collect as many I can so I can safety dispose of them when it is full. The blades are so thin, I expect it will take over a year to fill it at least, so that cuts down a lot of waste.
Another option I plan to explore is the Albatross take back program. If you purchase their razor blades they will take them back and up-cycle them into something new. That way I don’t have to trash anything!
UPDATE: When shopping for your razor research what you are getting. Some have longer handles, have more grip, open to replace the blades differently, etc. So be sure you understand what you are purchasing and get the right safety razor for you.
Shave Soaps & Shave Creams
Most people that use a safety razor also use shave soaps or creams, honestly I think this is because they work better with the safety razor whilst being planet friendly. When I first got my safety razor I needed to use up the last of my shave cream from a plastic bottle, and when I switched to the shave soap I could tell a real difference in how smooth the process was. Normal shaving cream seems to be too thick and slows the process.
If you prefer shave creams, Lush offers a couple but they come in recycled plastic. This is better than nothing but I personally like the naked soap and how long it lasts.
Be advised TSA will NOT allow you on a plane with a safety razor so don’t trash your current one just yet!! I kept my Venus razor handle to take with me on trips, I will still have purchase blades for it but one pack will now last me a year rather than a month. I am again using an old altoids tin to carry my soap sample here and I have a travel shave brush that is nice and compact.