Whether you pluck, shave, or buzz, grooming is perfectly natural. The waste our modern-day grooming habits leave behind — along with all the harmful chemicals — is not. Think about it: they’re called disposable razors. Meaning mountains of them end up discarded every year. Add to that all the emptied bottles of shampoo and shriveled tubes of toothpaste, and you can see how something as simple as keeping yourself fresh can have monumental consequences for our environment.
In the U.S., the third Friday of every August is designated as National Men’s Grooming Day, a (totally made-up) celebration of hygiene, self-care, and, of course, all things trimmed, shampooed, and unabashedly but carefully grown — whether it be fashionable stubble, a svelte mustache, or a bearish beard for the enthusiastically hirsute. What better time to consider some eco-friendly changes any man can make to improve his grooming routine — for himself and the environment? A few simple steps can make a world of difference.
Switch to a safety razor
There are many good reasons to switch to a safety razor, even if it takes a little practice to get used to it. For one thing, they give a much closer shave. The blades are sharp, but a metal guard protects them, so you're less likely to cut yourself. And once you get the hang of it, you can achieve a very close shave.
But the best reason to switch to a safety razor is that they’re much better for the environment since you’re not throwing away a plastic handle whenever you need to change the blade. Also, they're much cheaper in the long run. A good quality safety razor will last decades, and blades are inexpensive.
Remember this famous scene in Home Alone when Kevin stands in front of the mirror and uses aftershave for the first time? That’s right — the scene where he starts screaming because his face is burning? The first time you use a safety razor, that can be precisely your problem. The skin is always more affected than it is with other razors, at least the first few times. But this is normal, and you will get used to it. Because hey, the good thing about it is that the shave is even cleaner.
Avoid plastic when possible
To begin, look for the least-packaged products available. It might not seem like much to you, but it adds up. Buy in bulk and purchase refillable items whenever you can. You may even consider subscribing to a service that delivers plastic-free bars of soap, body wash, and other essentials.
Review the ingredients
If you’re about what ingredients you put in your body, shouldn’t you be just as careful about what you put on your body? After all, the skin absorbs everything — both good and bad. Try to seek out ingredients marked as organic, which, in addition to helping you screen out parabens and palm oil, means it is pesticide-free.
Switch from chemical shaving foams to natural ones
Of course, choosing the proper shaving foam is essential to one’s daily shaving routine. For many men, the decision-making process for is this: if it works, I’ll use it. Also, many men use shaving foam from a can that you spray into your hand and then put on your face. Done — very simple. But the most straightforward solutions often tend to be the worst. And it’s the same with spray shaving foam.
Most shaving creams contain aerosolized gas propellants, like chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). These gases are used to aerosolize the shaving cream so that it can be easily dispensed from the can. However, these gases are released into the atmosphere and contribute to climate change by trapping heat and damaging the ozone layer. In addition, CFCs and HFCs are toxic to marine life. These shaving foams can also contain harmful chemicals that can cause skin irritation, dryness, and even razor burn. So why not switch to a natural shaving cream?
Natural shaving foams are made with ingredients gentle on the skin, including aloe vera and cocoa butter. They also tend to be more hydrating than their synthetic counterparts, making them ideal for men with sensitive skin. And because they’re free of harsh chemicals, natural shaving foams are much less likely to irritate. So, if you’re looking for a better way to shave, ditch the cheap stuff and switch to natural shaving foam.
Consider making your own shaving cream
Why not make your own shaving foam? How about that? Many people think shaving cream is a unique mystery concoction, but it's just soap! And making your own shaving cream is easier than you might think. You probably have all the ingredients you need right in your kitchen.
All you need is olive oil, coconut oil, and castile soap. First, combine the oils in a pot over low heat until they melt. Then, add the castile soap and stir until everything is combined. Once the mixture has cooled, transfer it to a jar — and voila! You’ve got homemade shaving cream. Now all you need is a razor, and you’re good to go.
Approach everything you use with the same eye toward being eco-friendly
Ethically sourced, organic-certified ingredients can be found if you look for them in all the products you use — whether it’s reef-safe sunscreen or deodorants that, in addition to ditching the chemicals, are cruelty-free.
Use eco-friendly detergent to clean your shaving towels
For anyone who enjoys a close shave, a soft, clean towel is essential. But what’s the best way to keep your shaving towels looking and feeling fresh? Many people simply toss them in the washing machine with their other laundry, but this isn’t always the best option.
Using regular detergent could damage the fibers of your shaving towels, making them less absorbent and more likely to cause skin irritation. That’s why it’s essential to use an eco-friendly detergent designed for delicate fabrics. Not only will this extend the life of your towels, but it will also help to keep your skin looking and feeling its best.
And you know what? We’ve got you covered — because SaltyLama’s eco-friendly laundry sheets are the perfect way to keep your shaving towels clean and fresh. Made with natural ingredients, they are gentle on fabric and effective at removing dirt and bacteria. In addition, they are hypoallergenic and free of harsh chemicals, making them safe for use on sensitive skin. And because they are biodegradable, you can feel good about using them without harming the environment.
Our laundry strips are the perfect solution for anyone who wants to keep their towels clean and fresh without using harsh chemicals. Sample some now — you don’t have to wait in a line at the store to buy them — and see the difference!