Learning To Shave (with a Safety Razor)

My less-waste journey has led me to a safety razor. What is it? It’s a plastic-free razor with a single blade that your Dad might’ve used on his face (if you’re old enough). At first I was shit-scared of cutting my legs, but after two months I’ve shed my training wheels and won’t be going back to disposable razors. If you’r curious, I’d like to shed some light on the unknown.

Why switch?

As I become more aware of single-use plastics around the house, my disposable razor landed in my sights. Yes I can get several uses out of each one, but the amount of plastic in the packaging alone is over the top!

Where to start

I did lots of You Tubing to see videos of how to use a safety razor and different reviews. Those people looked unscathed so I decided to go for it.

In reading different forums, I picked up the advice that a longer handle is better for shaving legs. I had also read glowing reviews of Fine Shave, so I started there.

I chose an Edwin Jagger DEL89L Long Handle Safety Razor for $NZ59.99. It came with a 5-pack of Feather brand blades. I also chose a 30 pack of Sampler blades in a range of brands. All done online and delivered in a few days.



All of the bits and pieces – note for the zero-wasters that the Derby and Feather brands come in a plastic container which could be used for storage/disposal

Putting it all together

This took forever the first time – I was so afraid of the blade! On this model, you unscrew the head to reveal three parts to begin with – just missing the blade in the middle. The screw from the base protrudes up through the middle to hold the handle, base, blade and top together.

Tentative beginnings

I was quite scared to start. It felt like the first time all over again – and yes I knicked my knee like a true rookie but i haven’t cut myself since.

My advice would be to take your time to begin with. In two months I’m as quick as I was with a disposable, but I was quite careful and deliberate to start with. We have a shower over the bath, so at the start of my shower, I put in the plug to fill the bottom of the bath. Then I sit in the bath to shave my legs.

Instead of pressing down on your skin with it, you use the weight of the head to drag along your skin at the optimum angle.

I’ve used it with my Dirty Hippie natural soaps; shaving foam; moisturiser and even anti-stretchmark oil and it all works. I’m trying to find the right solution for my sensitive underarms and I’m thinking of adding a shaving brush to the natural soap to get the best lather.

What about other bits?

Haha no pic thank goodness!! I’ve attempted my bikini line to knick-free success so I see no reason that it wouldn’t be ok anywhere else if you’r careful.

Disposing of the blades

I’ve been through 5 blades in 2 months. I haven’t thrown away any blades yet as I’m going to try and sharpen them on some denim offcuts I have. Otherwise you could collect them safely in a sealed tincan (like golden syrup/milo tin) or in something with a small opening that you’ve poured the liquid out of (like coconut milk or something).

As always, happy to answer any questions if this is something you’ve been considering


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