If you’re trying to live a more sustainable life, your plastic razor just won’t cut it anymore. Plastic razors aren’t technically “single-use,” but copious amounts of them do end up in landfills all over the world. They only last from three to ten shaves before you have to chuck them, meaning that you have to buy more of them which creates more waste from the packaging.
What’s more, is that razors are notoriously difficult to recycle. BIC and Gillette, both major names in the razor industry, have launched razor recycling programs in the past few years. BIC’s recycling program eventually failed, while Gillette’s program is impractical because there are only 200 recycling centers across the US, which means that if you don’t live near a recycling drop-off, you’d have to mail your razors in and pay for the shipping.
As recycling options are limited for razors, the most sustainable decision would be to look for alternatives. Here are a few to consider.
Safety razors, or double-edged razors, are metal alternatives to plastic razors. Generally made of brass or stainless steel, these razors have a double-edged blade so that they can be used on both sides.
It may take getting used to, but once you get the hang of it you’ll be able to get a closer shave than if you were using a plastic razor. The only part of the razor that needs to be disposed of is the blade. Those who opt for safety razors will usually keep their blades in a jar until there’s enough of them to drop off at a scrap recycling plant.
If the double-edged razor is a bit intimidating, then perhaps you should consider eco-friendly razors made of recycled plastic. Preserve is a brand that offers eco-friendly razors at a reasonable price. You can also return used razor handles to the company to ensure that they are recycled properly.
You can also keep an eye out for other razors made from recycled or biodegradable material. There are even metal razors that function just like a regular multi-bladed razor but without the waste.
Eco-friendly disposable razors
If you don’t want to let go of disposable razors, then Ak Hippy Chic offers razors that have handles made of wheat straw and stainless steel blades, so you don’t have to feel guilty when you dispose of them.
Switching to waxing, rather than shaving, can eliminate waste altogether. “Sugaring” uses sugar or honey, instead of synthetic wax, and doesn’t require wasteful waxing paper. You can do this at home, but we recommend learning at a salon first.