Now here is a sustainable swap that applies to many – the everyday action of hair removal and the many simple alternatives to reduce our footprint in this part of the home.
Like brushing our teeth, this regularly occurring activity for many individuals often encounters a serious plastic problem. Cosmetic aisles in supermarkets are full of packets of disposable, plastic, single use razors, wax strips, and other devices in plastic bottles intended for a very short life cycle (2-4 uses usually, equating to hundreds and thousands of disposable items across households every year!). There are no current recycling solutions for hair removal products, so finding alternatives is the way to go.
Now, here is the easy bit! You can invest in one item for a longer period of time and seriously reduce your environmental and economic output as well. Three great alternatives are safety razors, electric razors, and epilators. Electric razors and epilators are fantastic for having rechargeable batteries and longevity, and can be used on the whole body (it is important to ensure your electric option is rechargeable and not battery powered to further reduce waste). Non electric alternatives such as safety razors look exactly like disposable razors but are made of metal and come without the plastic trimmings, and when looked after properly, can last forever! Make sure you read up on your local requirements for disposing of razor blades if you take the safety razor option. Pair this with a soap bar instead of shaving cream and you are well on your way!
1. Assess which reusable option you will source first. For safety razors, you can search online or head to your closest health food store. For epilators and electric razors, cosmetic stores, some chemists and online stores will stock these
2. Make sure you have your reusable option ready to go as you begin to run out of your previous disposable items – that way you are prepared to make the shift
3. Read up on how to use your new item if you aren’t familiar. Particularly for epilators, it is worth doing a test patch so you get a feel for how it works
4. Always leave enough time as the reusable options can sometimes take longer (to avoid going back to disposables!)
5. Track the economic benefits – roughly gauge how much you were spending previously on your disposable items and compare to the one off cost of your reusable item to truly appreciate the benefits your reusable alternative brings to your footprint and savings!