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At first, I didn’t know what to use in place of shaving cream. Yes, I could make my own, but I thought that seemed expensive and a lot of work. Then I found that giant $2 bars of olive oil soap make a great shaving cream. Score.
But I was still using plastic razors with large heads that I was using long past when I needed to be replaced so I could avoid the sticker shock of buying a new pack. $19 for 4 razors? You bet I’m going to make those last! I’m kind of a cheapskate…
Then, walking through a festival in my town, I came across a local soap company. The owner makes all of his own natural soaps and they are seriously awesome. But when I saw his shaving kit, I was intrigued.
This company sold a bar of soap, a shaving brush, and a shaving mug. The owner explained in detail how to use it and why the ingredients in his soap are so good and nourishing for the skin. I must say, my skin feels a lot better after shaving with this soap than after shaving with my olive oil soap! It is much smoother and doesn’t feel as dried out.
The owner also mentioned that this kit works best with a safety razor, so I googled that. I came across the Merkur razor. Stainless steel, made in Germany, all around awesome. Yeah, it’s a little more expensive than a plastic razor, but here’s the great thing. The blades that this company makes for its razor?
$13 for 10 blades!
Oh, oh, and! You don’t even have to use those blades. You could use a different company’s blades if you decide you like them better for you find them for cheaper. And because the blades are just a stainless steel, double sided blade, they all work very well and stay sharp for a long time. They produce minimal waste and get a closer shave than I’ve ever seen from a normal razor you find in the drug store.
Shaving with a Safety Razor
If you are looking for an eco-friendly shave using soaps and razors that contain no chemicals harmful to your body or the environment, a safety razor with a good quality shaving soap is the way to go. If you are looking to save money shaving, the blades for a safety razor are the cheapest you will find.
I bought a clean shaving kit of my local soap company’s shaving kit, a safety razor, and pack of 10 blades for Will’s Christmas present. He was instantly converted and once we are living together, we plan on sharing the razor. Is that gross? I don’t care, because this razor is fantastic for both men and women! The shave is close, it is easy to avoid cuts, and I have never seen this razor get clogged with hair or soap. It easily rinses off. No matter the coarseness or thickness of the hair, this razor can handle it.
The basic use of this razor is a bit different, though, so here’s a quick guide to shaving with your new razor:
- I recommend shaving over a skin or bathtub filled with warm water rather than in the shower. This prevents the soap from washing off and makes it easy to rinse off the razor. However, I do shave in the shower and it works fine.
- Lather the area to be shaved with shaving soap. If using a shaving brush and mug, prepare the soap as indicated in the instructions. When it is time to shave, simply wet the brush and lather up the soap. Apply to the skin with the brush in a circular fashion. This works the soap into the hair and skin, nourishing it and providing an easier shave.
- Note that the angle of the blade is different on this razor. You will have to hold the razor differently than your old razor.
- Start slowly as you adjust to the new razor, paying attention to the angle and remembering that this blade is sharper and does not have as much “padding” as you are used to. You do not need to use as much pressure! If you are not careful during the adjustment period, you will cut yourself.
- Alternate which side of the razor you shave with. You can either alternate each stroke, or just use the other side when you shave the other side of your body. This will ensure that both sides of the blade are dulled evenly and you get the most use out of each one.
Have you used a safety razor or shaving soap before? How do you like it?
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