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How to Use a Safety Razor

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How to Use a Safety Razor

A safety razor may seem intimidating and hard to use. However, once you learn how to use a safety razor, you’ll realize that it’s not much different than a cartridge razor.

Plus, you’ll get to enjoy a smooth and close shave that’s not only environmentally friendly, but also budget friendly. When you’re ready to make the switch, read on to learn all the tips and tricks you need to know on how to use a safety razor.

Why Switch to a Safety Razor?

Safety razor on edge of bathtub

I fully admit that when I was working toward a zero waste bathroom, one of the last things I did was make the switch to a safety razor. I didn’t know much about these razors other than they were a good environmental choice and cheaper than cartridge razors.

They looked different than what I was used to, and I was afraid I was going to cut myself. However, after using one for a few weeks, I quickly realized that they’re actually very easy to use. Now I’ll never go back to shaving with a cartridge razor again.

Not only are safety razors simple to use, but they also offer plenty of other benefits.

  • Plastic free shaving- Unlike cartridge razors, safety razors don’t have any plastic parts. This makes them a great way to reduce your plastic use.
  • Environmentally friendly- Looking to cut down on your waste? The only part of the safety razor you need to replace is the blade, which you can recycle.
  • Budget friendly- Not only do the blades of a safety razor create less waste, but they’re also considerably cheaper than replacement cartridges.
  • Smooth and close shave- Because the blades are so sharp, safety razors offer a much closer shave than many cartridge razors.
  • Less irritation- Cartridge razors use multiple blades, which can cut hair below the skin’s surface and pull on the skin. This causes razor bumps and irritation. Safety razors use one blade, which means less pulling and fewer razor bumps.

Steps for How to Use a Safety Razor

Hand holding safety razor

When you’re ready to make the switch to a safety razor, you can follow these steps to enjoy a smooth, clean, and nick-free shave.

1. Choose the Right Safety Razor

If you don’t already have your safety razor, be sure to check out this post on the best safety razor for beginners. The safety razor recommended in that post is lightweight, easy to hold, and offers a very forgiving shave.

2. Exfoliate

The first step to shaving with a safety razor is to exfoliate. Exfoliation helps buff away dead skin cells that would otherwise come off while you’re shaving and clog your razor.

If you’re looking for a great natural exfoliator to use, check out this homemade coffee scrub. Not only do the coffee grounds provide a nice exfoliation and uplifting scent, but they also help reduce the look of cellulite!

3. Apply Shaving Gel

After you’ve exfoliated, it’s time to apply your shaving gel or shaving cream. I love to use this homemade shaving gel because it’s incredibly nourishing, which is great for my sensitive skin.

Plus, since it goes on clear, it’s perfect if you have any moles or cuts that you want to avoid going over with the razor.

If you don’t have time for DIY, that’s not a problem. You can still enjoy a smooth, close shave when you choose one of these best all-natural shaving soap bars.

4. Shave

When you’re ready to shave, fill a bowl or sink with water for rinsing the razor.

Position the razor against your skin at a 30- to 45-degree angle.

Don’t apply any downward pressure on the razor. Instead, let the natural weight of the razor press it down for you.

Take short, smooth strokes to decrease the chances of razor bumps or cutting yourself.

When I shave my legs, I find it easier to work in sections. First, I apply the shaving gel on the lower half of my leg and shave there. Then I do the knee. Finally, I do the upper half of my leg.

Use the water to rinse off the razor after each stroke. I find that it occasionally helps to take out the blade and give everything a good rinse to keep the razor from getting clogged with hair.

If you shave against the direction your hair grows and find yourself getting razor bumps, switch to shaving in the same direction. Also, make sure you apply fresh shaving gel before each pass of the razor.

5. Apply Lotion

When you’re finished shaving and you’ve rinsed off your skin, the final step in the process is to apply an after-shave lotion. This can help soothe any minor irritation you get from shaving.

Related: The Best Lotion Bar to Soothe Irritated Skin

6. Clean Up

To make sure your safety razor stays in good condition and lasts as long as possible, it’s important to clean it when you’re done shaving. Fortunately, this isn’t some long and complicated process.

Simply rinse off and wipe away any excess hair or shave gel from the razor head and blade. Then use a towel to dry your razor, and you’re done!

How Often Should I Replace a Safety Razor Blade?

Just like cartridge razors, you’ll eventually need to change the blade in the safety razor. How often you need to change it depends entirely on how often you shave and how thick or coarse your hair is.

Ideally, you should consider changing the blade every 7 to 10 shaves. When you notice your shave isn’t as smooth as it usually is, you know it’s time to change the blade. Like everything else, the more you shave with a safety razor, the easier it will be to tell when it’s time to change the blade.

The good news is safety razor blades are SIGNIFICANTLY less expensive than razor cartridges. If you choose to use this safety razor, you can get replacement blades for just a few dollars.

How to Recycle Safety Razor Blades

In addition to having cheaper replacement blades, the other advantage of a safety razor is that it’s more environmentally friendly. That’s because the replacement blades are made of steel, which means you can recycle them.

Of course, you can’t simply toss the blades into your recycling bin. Instead, here’s how to safely recycle safety razor blades.

Get an old can that you can use as blade bank. Your can must be the same metal as the razor blades to work. To see if it is, simply use a magnet. If the magnet sticks to the razor blade and the can, they match!

When you replace a blade, drop it in the can. Once the can is full, use pliers to crimp the can shut so no blades can fall out. Then you can recycle the entire can with the blades inside.

How to Shave With a Safety Razor

Safety razors might look scary, but with a little patience and practice, you’ll see that they’re not much different than shaving with a cartridge razor. Now that you know how to use a safety razor, you can confidently make the switch to this zero waste shaving option.

More Eco-Friendly Tips

Are you interested in discovering even more excellent eco-friendly tips you can use to reduce your waste and live a more natural life? Then be sure to check out some of our other popular posts:

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