Razors and the Environment

OK, random post, but something that I have been thinking about for a few days and as this is as good a place as any to think aloud, then what the heck. Here it goes.

I started shaving when I was about 15/16. Not much to shave back then. I was in my 30s before I could grow a full beard, and even now it really doesn’t get too thick. Genetics at work I suppose; though I have had a Goatee since I was in my mid-20s. Only thing I’ve really ever managed to grow properly.

Anyway, as I have previously mentioned, this year I am doing things slightly differently and trying to be a better person and make some positive changes in my life. I was in Tesco on Friday last week and I decided to buy a new shaving razor. I liked the look of it (see pic below) and so I decided on a whim to buy it.

By this point you are maybe wondering where the issue of the environment comes into my random thoughts. Well, here it goes.

Over the years I have used a wide range of different razors and never gave the environment a 2nd thought until Friday last week. I have used countless disposable razors as well as electric razors (my dad used to use a 3-headed electric razor and due to these memories, this was the first of several electric razors to come and go within my possession). And all of them have ended up in landfill. Not good for the environment…nor my wallet actually. I must confess that I still have an electrical beard trimmer (as I have shaved bare from time-to-time) and an electrical razor and intend to keep them for as long as they function.

But I would say that I have went through many more disposable razors than any other type. The one I mainly use, which I will now be changing, is the one below:

Ok, a little bit of a Google search revealed to me the categories of the 5 main types of razor available, so now I can sound a little more knowledgeable lol.

#1 Disposable: I’ve used these things in the past. Cheap, rust easily and blunt quickly then just bin. But lot’s of plastic and the ones I used only had 3 blades which became clogged or blunt quite quick. Basically, the worst I’ve used for quality and especially the environment with all that plastic going to landfill.

#2 Electric: have used these in the past and still use them for personal grooming and beard trimming. I currently have 2 and use them for different purposes. I don’t mind spending a little extra for a good one (a little research found electric shavers retailing at £250 and above. At that price I would expect it to shave me itself and also run me a bath and change my cats litter trays!) with a decent range of hair lengths – used it to shave my head twice during lockdown in 2020 when I couldn’t get to a barber. Plus no shaving foam. Bonus!

#3 Cartridge Razors: I have been using these things for years and love(d) the idea of holding onto the base and just binning the head when it was finished. But, be it 3 or 5 blade, it was always getting clogged with hair and I had to hold a finger under the water-tap (faucet if you are American) to create a strong jet of high pressure water to clean the blades…whilst also sending water in all directions. Plus it was expensive! Have you seen the price of the replacement cartridges!? Yea, so you might spend £15 and get 9 cartridges, but then it’s like £7 for 4. That’s £1.75 each! Plus, again, all that plastic going into the bin.

#4 Safety Razor: £15 for the razor, and then 10 blades for £2!!! Plus, the amount of metal needing to be disposed off is minimal. I loose more metal through dropped change than I would through this method. Plus, I will be honest, it is the closest shave I have ever had in my life.

#5 Straight Razor: best shave, apparently, you will ever have as well as being the most cost effective. But also the most dangerous and, whilst I am usually careful around blades, I think I would have to add the cost of my funeral to this one if I made a mistake. Not for me lol.

Thanks for reading.