Shaving is probably the most popular form of hair removal these days, for several reasons. It’s incredibly convenient as you don’t need to book into a salon. It’s virtually pain free, providing you don’t cut yourself. And it’s extremely cheap as you can get packets of several disposable razors for just a few pounds. But although it might not cost us much, our environment does pay a price. Disposable razors and disposable blades go straight to landfill where some plastics can take up to 1000 years to decompose. So every razor you have ever used is probably still in landfill. Now there’s a scary thought! Of course the best way to avoid contributing to landfill would be to just go au naturale, if you’re up for that then good for you! But a lot of people aren’t comfortable with that, including me..
A few years ago I had chronically itchy legs for what felt like about a year and a half. When the scratching got too much I went to the doctor who prescribed an anti-fungal cream and a strong moisturiser. Neither helped. And so I decided to stop shaving my legs. Which also didn’t help.. But this post isn’t about my itchy legs! (If you have any thoughts on this feel free to share, it just went away by itself thankfully!)
I stopped shaving for around 3-4 years and started several different methods of hair removal. Going mostly to the closest salon to get waxed or using my epilator which must be at least 10 years old now but works just fine!
I left to go backpacking in January 2017 but I booked this almost a year in advance so I had plenty of time to figure out how I was going to cope with de-fuzzing on the move. Shaving seemed to be the best option – initially we were going to be in a tour group with a tight schedule and hopefully great weather. After reading so many blogs and watching so many YouTube videos about reducing waste and avoiding plastic I couldn’t bring myself to buy a commercial razor with the disposable blades shrouded in plastic so I started to look for a lovely old fashioned safety razor.
During my search I came across Shave Lounge and I’ve never been so impressed with customer service. I messaged them on Facebook to ask about their packaging and they assured me that it was very eco friendly. They advised that they use 100% biodegradable packing chips made from starch, cardboard boxes and paper packing tape. How delightful! There was a small plastic window on the box that the razor came in but this depends on what brand you go for – this website stocks several brands so you could definitely research this or ask the staff if they stock any brands that are plastic free.
There was a free gift when I was making my purchase, this included a few packets of blades from different brands, one of which was in a plastic dispenser. Being unable to opt out of the free gift I contacted customer service asking if they could remove it. Instead of doing this they very kindly included a different brand which was packaged in cardboard! If you’re considering buying a razor I’d highly recommend ordering from this site because the customer service I received on more than one occasion was outstanding.
Save yourself some dolla’ – and the planet!
If you are a regular shaver you’ll know blades can be very pricey, especially if you go for the ones with the scented moisturising strips like I used to. Purchasing double sided blades for a safety razor costs a fraction of the price so you’ll save a fortune! I will add though that using a razor like this does take a bit of practice and will probably increase the time it takes you to shave but it’s definitely worth it in my opinion to decrease your contribution to landfill.
“Zero waste razor”
Okay so maybe “zero waste razor” is inaccurate as the razor blades are still technically waste. However, unlike plastic razor blades, steel blades can be recycled . The razor itself will last a lifetime too as it is made from metal. If we can’t avoid waste completely we can make better choices to reduce it!