What's the most eco-friendly way to shave? It's the bamboo safety razor of course!
The safety razor is back in the limelight and for good reason. It's a great plastic-free swap for the modern plastic cartridge or single use razors.
What is a safety razor?
These are by no means a new invention. They've been around for well over 100 years and have slowly adapted to the plastic covered razors you buy today. The safety razor first became popular with King Camp Gillette's invention of the double edged safety razor back in 1905.
Before this, regular straight razors were used and predominantly by barbers. With the safety razor, injury free shaving became possible without taking trips to the barbers. The US army issued Gillette shaving kits to soldiers in the first world war which massively increased their popularity.
These bamboo safety razors are essentially a bamboo handle with a stainless steel double edged, replaceable razor blade on the end.
Safety razor vs plastic, single use razor
Since their introduction in the 1960's, disposable and single use plastic razors have taken over the market. Marketing companies have been releasing new products that all do the same thing at regular intervals for years, it's impressive they come up with so many names! Prices are going up and up and the plastic is still built into the razors and packaging.
Plastic razors aren't recyclable, they don't last and they're expensive. In contrast, safety razors are recyclable/biodegradable, they last and they're cost effective.
How do they compare to use?
We won't lie, it might take some getting used to when you switch to a safety razor. Plastic razors are light and if that's what you're used to, you may find safety razors a bit heavy to start with. You will get used to this though! A small price to pay for cutting out plastic.
Safety razors are slightly more bulky than plastic razors too. But again, this is something you will get used to and can adapt to.
What you will get with a safety razor is a incredibly close, smooth shave.
What makes them eco-friendly?
So, firstly, there is absolutely no plastic. None in the product itself and none in the packaging. Tick.
The materials the bamboo safety razor is made from are either 100% recyclable or biodegradable. The steel razor blades can be recycled when they aren't as sharp as they used to be and the handle is made from bamboo!
Comparing this to what we've talked about already, with disposables you've got plastic packaging around a plastic handle which has plastic embedded razor blades on. 0% recyclable, 100% bad.
Change the way you shave, bravo for bamboo.
Tips and tricks for beginners
As mentioned, the safety razor can be difficult (but not impossible) to get used to. So here are our top tips for using your safety razor for the first time:
- Take it slow - leave yourself enough time to take it slowly (no rushed shaves when late!)
- Get used to the grip and holding it in your hand - it's different to a plastic razor, you need to get used to the weight and feel of your new handle
- Keep your razor at the right angle - the blade should be about 30° angle from the skin. Achieve this by keeping the handle at about 45° angle.
- Don't push too hard - the weight of the razor and the steel blade will do all the work for you, keep it light and gentle otherwise you could cause little nicks and cuts
- Use a shave soap to help the razor glide smoothly - a little lather goes a long way! We recommend our Aloe Vera soap bar, which you can check out here
- Keep the blade clean (easy to rinse out) and dry
- Changing the blade is easy peasy - open the razor up, carefully take the blade out, pop a new one in and close it all back up again using the twisting handle
- To recycle the blades there are a couple of options. One option is to buy a razor blade recycle tin to collect them and recycle them safely. Another is to collect them together safely (we use a jar) and enquire at local recycling centres or with your local council.