Sustainable shaving: info and tips

Sustainable shave: After shot of a woman's leg being shaved

Shaving is part of everyday life for many men and women. There can be quite a lot of garbage. Because in addition to the electric razor, so-called system razors or disposable razors are also popular with both sexes. In case of system shavers, you will have to change the blade regularly. Disposable razors end up completely in the garbage can after use. Thus, both variants create a lot of plastic waste, consisting of:

  • the packaging material of the razors as well as for the blades,
  • the disposable and system razors as well as replacement blades,
  • Empty cans or dispensers for shaving foam.

But shaving sustainably is quite simple. Those who do not want to do without smooth skin on the legs, armpits, face as well as in the intimate area can, for example, switch to the razor plane. "Planer" admittedly doesn’t sound particularly inviting at first glance. Yet behind this method is a gentle and long-lasting alternative to the disposable razor. The razor was born in England in the 19th century. Century. He remained also afterwards for a long time modern. So many know the razor still from the bathroom cabinet of the father.

Sustainable shaving: Gently with the razor

Compared to conventional utensils for hair removal, the use of a razor plane produces less waste. Firstly, the plane itself is made of stainless steel and is therefore resistant to rust. Thus, the razor is robust and designed for a long period of use. Although a lot of energy is needed for the production of stainless steel. However, the material is also fully recyclable. On the other hand, some manufacturers offer razors without plastic packaging.

Even the razor must be equipped with new blades from time to time. However, these last comparatively longer than those of system shavers. Thus you can avoid alone by the reduced change of the blade garbage, without the quality of the shave suffers. You can get a razor for about 40 euros. The comparatively high purchase costs pay off over time. Because the replacement blades for the plane are much cheaper than those for system razors.

The razor also differs in operation from a standard system razor. Let’s assume that the latter has three cutting edges in the head of the blade: during the shave, the first blade sets up the hairs and the second cuts them off. For an effective shave follows the third blade. This ensures that all hairs have been removed. However, it also irritates the now already very sensitive skin. Shaving pimples and skin irritations can occur. The razor plane has a single cutting edge. Thanks to its own weight, an effective shave is still possible – and the skin is less irritated.

Close-up of a razor with shaving brush on red towel

© CCo / Couleur

The razor is much more complicated in handling than the razor plane. Probably most therefore know the equipment only from former times.

Straight razor – zero-waste shave

Another option for a sustainable shave is the so-called straight razor. Some or some surely know this utensil from barbershops or hairdressing salons for thinning the main hair. If you buy the razor in appropriate department stores, you can buy it unpacked. Because the folding knife comes with its own handle, usually made of wood. So you can carry it like a pocket knife and avoid packaging waste. Furthermore, there is also no waste for the replacement of blades: This is namely not necessary. If the razor becomes blunt, you can simply have it resharpened.

But beware: as the name suggests, this razor is a knife. Accordingly, the risk of injury. For the beard shave men can visit the professional in the barbershops. In addition, there are various instructions and tips on the use of the razor on the Internet. The leg or intimate shave with the razor, on the other hand, is quite a complex undertaking. For this reason, many women, but also men then prefer to use the plane.

Sustainable shaving – tips and tricks

The razor plane is ideal for both men and women to shave sustainably. You can use it for leg shaving, beard shaving, underarm shaving as well as intimate shaving. All, which work for the first time with a razor plane, should first get a feeling for the utensil. For example, compared to conventional razors, you do not have to apply pressure with the plane. That takes over the dead weight of the razor. What sounds complicated at first, however, is not only something for professionals. For example, the leg shave with the razor succeeds:

  • Step 1: If necessary, treat ingrown hairs with a scrub.
  • Step 2: Take a shower with warm water for about two minutes so that the skin pores open up. This way the hair is softer and can be cut closer to the root.
  • Step 3: Apply shaving soap, oil or cream.
  • Step 4: Shave first in the direction of hair growth. Then against the direction of growth. So you guarantee a precise shave, because the head of the razor is immobile.
  • Step 5: Dry your legs and apply care products.

This is how intimate shaving works

Whether with the man or with the woman: The intimate shave is a matter, which requires fingertip feeling. For a gentle and effective shave of this area of the body, be sure to use a razor with sharp blades. This way you prevent the appearance of red, itchy pimples – also known as razor burn. In addition, the extensive lathering before shaving is a good basis to reduce skin irritation.

Sustainable shaving: info and tips

For easier foaming of the shaving soap you can get special shaving mugs.

Furthermore you should carry out in the intimate area with the razor only wet shaves. Always shave in the direction of hair growth. So you avoid inflammation of the hair root or the ingrowth of coming hairs. Once all the desired hair is cut, you can then soothe the stressed skin with a little cold water. Coconut and olive oil are a good care for after shaving. However, avoid contact of the sensitive mucous membranes with the care products.

The right shaving accessories

Sustainable shaving also includes the accessories. Conventional shaving foam consists of synthetic substances. In addition, the foam is in cans or other dispensers. These are often made of plastic and end up in the garbage can after use. With so-called shaving cream, shaving soap and shaving oil you can avoid waste. Continue to use products made from natural ingredients.

Shaving soap

Shaving soap is suitable for wet shaves and is available in a jar. You can get the shaving accessories in both soft and hard variants. Both products differ in the volume of the foam. For the beard shave, the soap is foamed and applied with the help of a brush. You can also apply shaving soap by hand, for example for shaving legs. The decisive factor here is ultimately the desired foam formation.

Shaving oil

Shaving oil is a frequently underestimated alternative to shaving cream. Because the essential oils of the product can soothe especially sensitive skin during shaving. Eucalyptus, for example, is said to have an antiseptic effect. In addition, shaving oils are usually made from natural ingredients. This way there are usually no ecological concerns if they end up in the waste water.

Shaving brush

The application of shaving soap on the part of the body to be shaved is often done with the help of a brush. This has always been made from animal hair. However, nowadays there are alternatives made of synthetic fibers. And these can definitely compete with the models made from animal hair. So that your shaving brush lasts long, you should clean it after use under warm water. Shake the residual water out of the brush afterwards. Keep it hanging or standing in a well-ventilated place until the next use.

Tip: Who wants to shave sustainably, should pay attention at the beginning especially to the ingredients of the selected care and shaving products. Because this is where beginners often make mistakes. So not everywhere that says "organic" is also organic in it: While, for example, the term organic food is protected as a designation, this does not apply to cosmetic products.

Sustainable shaving – for men and women

Both women and men can shave sustainably without much effort. Also the necessary products do not differ in principle. A man can use the razor as well as a woman. The only differences that can arise are in the care. For example, some men appreciate the classic aftershave smell. Natural cosmetics or homemade skin care products may lack this distinctive touch. For example, you smell like aloe vera, essential oils or shea butter. Men who do not want to do without this aspect of shaving can purchase appropriate products specifically for men. In addition, there are care products that are specially designed for irritated skin after shaving.

Alternative to shaving

But sustainable shaving is not the only way to remove body hair in an environmentally friendly way. The so-called sugaring is comparable to the treatment with waxing. Sugaring paste consists of lemon juice, sugar and water. Apply the paste against the direction of hair growth on the part of the body to be depilated. Let the paste dry. Afterwards, you can remove them from the skin in a jerky manner similar to wax strips. The dried paste plucks out hair when pulled off.

And of course, there is always the option of simply letting it grow. This saves resources and avoids waste in connection with shaving – but is also a question of type. For some women, not shaving now represents a body-affirming attitude. Just recently, a young Englishwoman called on the platform Instagram to the "Januhairy" challenge: One month just let everything sprout.

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