Green Shaving

Preserve Razors

I have to warn you first that I won’t be an enormous help in this area. I only have limited experience with green hair removal. (That sounds gross, doesn’t it?)

So here we go…

Shaving is a tough one. People argue that it isn’t the most earth-friendly option, because, no matter what, you’re using up too many resources (the razor/replaceable heads). Some have argued that the absolute best, greenest way to deal with unwanted hair is electrolysis. But I won’t be doing that anytime soon.

Waxing has its pros and cons. The average commercial brand is full of chemicals I wouldn’t want anywhere near me. Here’s a list of ingredients from Veet and Nair, respectively:

-Triethylene Glycol Rosinate, Glyceryl Rosinate, Silica, Fragrance, Isopropyl Myristate, BHA, Green 6, Mentha Piperita Leaf Extract

-Triethylene Glycol Rosinate , Glyceryl Hydrogenated Rosinate , Microcrystalline Wax , Chamomilla Recutita Flower Extract Matricaria , Glycine Soja Oil Soybean , Bisabolol , Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil Sunflower , Achilea Millefolium Extract , Fragrance , Mineral Oil , Ethylhexyl Stearate , Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate , Isopropyl Myristate , Bisabolol , Chamomilla Recutita Extract Matricaria , Methylparaben , Ethylparaben , Propylparaben , Butylparaben , Isobutylparaben , Fragrance

Mineral oil, parabens, fragrance? No thanks! Even products that look eco-friendly are often just the result of greenwashing.

I have heard that there’s a great product out there called Moom, however, that is supposedly very eco-friendly and effective. DIY sugaring is supposedly easy and effective, though a friend, who shall remain nameless (unless she pops up in the comments to talk about this) said sugaring didn’t give her the results she was looking for. Here’s an interesting video on the sugaring process:

However, if you’re like me, you have zero interest in pulling hairs out from their roots. (I pretty much made that decision after using the Epilady for the first time in 1989. “Whisks hairs from the roots,” was the understatement of the decade. “Whisks?!” Yeah, right!) That leaves us with two options:

1. Shave with the greenest razors you can find. I personally use Preserve. The handles are made from recycled plastic, and are, themselves, recyclable. The heads, unfortunately, have to be thrown away, but if you’re like me, you’ll use them longer than you should! ;)

The downside: No one really likes these razors, including me. Of all the eco-shaving adventures I’ve read online, we all love our Venus. Nothing beats the Venus. BUT…I’m willing to make sacrifices in the name of Mother Earth. I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a better green razor out there – if you know of one, please let me know!

If you are on a no-plastic-whatsoever mission, then you can look for other options. I read about this one on Fake Plastic Fish and am contemplating about going this route in the future…

2. Don’t shave. Now don’t run off in horror and vow never to come back to this crazy, no-poo, shower-every-other-day blog. Hear me out: Ever since I heard Mo’nique talk about her no-leg-shaving policy (and saw her wearing a dress and putting it right out there on national television), I thought: Damn! Good for her! Why shouldn’t we embrace our body’s natural state and stand tall in the knowledge that yes, we are beautiful! Why shouldn’t we decide what is beautiful instead of letting our society do that for us?

And I don’t think this is so uncommon. I know a LOT of women (myself included) who “fudge” shaving for long periods of time. You certainly don’t need to shave every day, or even every other day in the winter, when your legs are covered up with pants.

As for shaving creams, ditch them! They’re full of chemicals, and are often packaged wastefully. I mix up a 1:4 mixture of liquid castile soap and water and keep this in the shower. Just shake, squirt onto the legs, and shave. It makes a really good, slippery (but not dangerously so) surface to help get a close, non-irritating shave. Remember to turn the water off or down while you shave to save some H2O.

Let me know if you have any other green hair removal (there’s that gross-sounding phrase again!) tips!

Saving Water in the Shower

The average American takes an 8-minute shower, and uses 17 gallons of fresh water in the process. And the average American showers every single day – sometimes more than once. That’s a lot of fresh water – and money – going down the drain.

Danze Victorian Shower Head - Only 1.5 GPM!

What can you do to save water in the shower?

::Install low-flow showerheads. These easy-to-install devices save about 2 gallons of water per minute. To put that into perspective, a family of four would save about 20,000 gallons per year (NDRC). (Think of the savings on your water bill!)

::Turn off the shower when you lather up and shave. Do the math. If it takes you at least a minute to shave and at least a minute to lather up, that’s approximately 5 gallons of water saved!

::Shower with your honey. That’s two showers for the price of one. If you’re an average American, that means 17 gallons saved.

::Keep a bucket in the bathroom and put it under the faucet when you’re waiting for the water to get hot. Use it to water your lawn/garden.

::Take shorter showers. Some of us (okay, me) really love, love, love long, hot showers. But limit those long showers to weekly – or better yet, montly – luxuries. Learn to take “Jennifer Aniston showers.” Aniston says, “I take a three-minute shower… Every two minutes in the shower uses as much water as a person in Africa uses for everything in their life for a whole day!” Set a timer when you take a shower – you may be surprised by how much you dawdle!

::If you have trouble shortening the length of your shower, simply shower less often. Most of us do not need to shower every single day, especially in winter. I only shower once every other day and have had this routine for nearly two years – even in the summer. Remember – it’s the best thing you can do for your hair! And you’ll be saving about 51 gallons of water per week.

Just for kicks, here’s a clip from Seinfeld – one of my favorite episodes. Obviously, Kramer doesn’t use a low-flow shower head! But you’ll get a laugh out it.