Excited that I got my new shaver in the mail! I have been reading other Zero-Waste blogs and almost every Zero-Waster has this shaver. A shaver meant to replace all future shavers. The one shaver to rule them all.
As part of being minimal waste, we need to look hard at the disposable culture we live in. Think about all the products that were created in the last 10-20 years that were purely meant to be used once and thrown away to forever pollute our land, air and water.
The catch line is always something similar to, ‘Use once and throw away!’ Which isn’t really a thing to be proud of. Why would we want to expend so much energy into creating something that is meant to be used for a couple of minutes? Does that even make sense? It’s honestly just companies trying to make more money off of you. They want you to throw it away and want a new one, so that they will always have products that will sell off the shelves.
I don’t know about you, but I’m not trying to be another pawn in that game. Especially when that game is going to kill us. All this extra trash we put on this Earth doesn’t just biodegrade and disappear. It stays put for hundreds of years. HUNDREDS.
Among the products that are meant to be disposable, are the rightly named, ‘disposable safety razors’. Those color coded razors that are meant to be used for a couple of months and then thrown away for a new one. They are so cheap and disposable that they come in packs! Packs of future trash that will stay polluting our oceans and harming our health for years and years and years and years and years and years to come.
I decided to slowly get rid of these products in my home. Clorox wipes were replaced with cloths that can be washed and used over and over again. Plastic utensils and cups for our hosted parties would be replaced with actual metal utensils and ceramic cups.
And the disposable razor will be replaced by the life-lasting chrome-plasted safety razor. I specifically chose the Merkur Safety Razor, because it is the one everyone buys and has the most reviews. It is so durable that it will probably live longer than you and can be passed down from generation to generation. All that needs to be replaced are the blades, which are recyclable. I was so excited to start using this because it meant that I would never buy a disposable razor again and that means saving razors from adding to the 2 billion razors that are thrown away every year by Americans. Plastic disposable razors aren’t able to be recycled so they go straight into the landfill.
I know some people try to make the life of their disposable razors last as long as they can before they throw it away, but honestly, in the end it’s still disposable, and still adding to the landfill. Why not get a classic safety razor that will last generations and never end up in the landfill? Because everything about it can be recycled.
It might be a large upfront cost at first, but you will never spend money on a razor ever again. So really, it’s cheap in the long run. Remember to think long-term! That’s where all success is born from, in the realm of keeping the long-term in mind.
The Merkur Safety Razor was about $23. But there are bargain ones such as the Van Der Hagen Safety Razor for $16.
Anyway, I tried it out and it was pretty nice! Although, I got over confident in my leg shaving abilities and cut myself in the ankle area. Not because the blade itself was too sharp or harmful (but it can be!), but because I tend to do that with all shavers around the ankle area (yes even with a four bladed disposable). So to anyone buying this razor to help the future of humankind, I thank you, but also I need to warn you to GO SLOW and LIGHT around the ankle area!
I also bought the brush and shaving stand set along with shaving soap to complete my setup! The shaving soap is used with the brush to whip up some lather. The shaving soap is awesome because it’s another way of not buying shaving cream that comes in an aluminum can. I was disappointed that the one I bought, Van Der Hagen, came packaged in a plastic bin. Why couldn’t they wrap it in paper or something, since it is a solid bar?
Aside from that, I liked the shaving soap bar itself. It lathered up well, but not too much that it was wasteful of the soap. The brush I got with the set, smells funny, like a musky weird smell and I’m not sure how long it will last, so I don’t know if I would buy that again. The stand is nice though and you can buy it separately on amazon.
I was curious about whether these razors were really recyclable and what happens to the razor blades after they become dull for me. I emailed Van Der Hagen (mostly because they were the bargain priced razor company) and received this response:
” Thanks for reaching out. Compared to using multi-blade razors, traditional wet shaving is indeed more environmentally friendly.
The Van Der Hagen Traditional Safety Razor is made from solid brass and then chrome-plated to help prevent corrosion. With proper care, the safety razor should not rust. Should you want to dispose of it, carefully remove the razor blade inside the razor head and place the razor into your recycling bin.
Van Der Hagen blades are made from stainless steel. The stainless steel is ice tempered for optimum strength and flexibility, and the Teflon coating helps improve the life of each blade.
Not all municipalities are equipped to recycle stainless steel razor blades. In fact, recycling facilities often won’t accept razor blades because of the potential harm to their workers and machinery. Even though you can place razor blades in a safe container and put it in the recycle bin, there’s a good chance the blades will not be recycled. The Van Der Hagen Recycling Program was created to unite traditional wet shavers in making a more positive impact on the environment. Through the program, we safely recycle your used razor blades for you. New members receive a free pack of razor blades to start.
If you’d like more information, please visit http://vanderhagen.com/van-der-hagen-recycling-program.”
Pretty awesome right? So now I definitely know the razors are recyclable and they have a program to recycle the blades as well. Completely sustainable! Anyway, have any of you tried the classic safety razors?