The holidays are coming, and if you’re like me, you like to get your shopping done early so you can spend more time relaxing with a glass of eggnog. With all the waste generated by the holidays and gift-giving, I’ve tried to reduce my impact by using recyclable or reusable wrapping, giving fewer, more meaningful gifts, and giving gifts that help others reduce waste!
Because everyone does some personal grooming, and many folks shave, I’ve found shaving and grooming gear to be an excellent choice for the folks on my list. Here are my top pieces of gear that I go for when gift shopping:
Double-Edged Safety Razor
These traditional razors have recently seen widespread adoption in the zero-waste community, but they can be a little intimidating. Don’t worry; they’re almost as easy to use as a conventional razor and give a much better shave. The razors come in recyclable packaging, and many of the blades also come packed in cardboard for much less money than modern razor blades!
Hoxton Shave Co. makes some excellent starter razors. At $50, you get a pretty, grippy razor that doesn’t break the bank. They perform, last decades if cared for and work for any body part. Another favourite is the Merkur 23C, a slightly longer option that’s great for both faces and legs. If you want to treat them to something a little fancier, get a Henson; they’re Candian-made and super easy for beginners to use. Whatever razor you choose, make sure to grab several different brands of blades. Each brand makes a blade that shaves a little differently, and everyone finds a different brand that is right for them. Kent of Inglewood Mild, Shark, and Kai are all pretty beginner-friendly!
Shaving Brush & Soap
If you want to seriously upgrade your loved one’s shaving experience, add a brush and soap. Two reasons: it helps eliminate conventional foams and takes the shave experience from ‘pretty good’ to ‘HOLY BANANAS, THIS IS AMAZING!’. The brush exfoliates your skin and softens your hair, making for a much smoother, closer shave. The soap protects your skin, lubricates the razor, and smells fantastic!
A basic beginner brush like our synthetic is a great budget-friendly start and lasts years if taken care of properly. While it is made from plastic, it lasts a very long time and creates little waste. If you want to go big, grab a silvertip badger hair brush.
Regarding soap, you can keep the zero-waste train going by buying reusable containers! Many soaps come in a recyclable tin, but I prefer the traditional wooden bowl. It’s super classy and can be refilled endlessly. D.R Harris makes soap in a wooden bowl that lathers up beautifully and comes in various scents from musky Windsor to soothing Lavender.
Clean 02 Soaps
This is possibly the most environmentally-friendly product I’ve ever seen, no joke. In addition to recyclable packaging, Clean 02 soap is made with captured carbon from commercial exhaust systems. The parent company to clean 02 has a proprietary carbon capture system that they install in buildings, and it snatches up the carbon output from their heating system! The captured carbon is then used as a key ingredient in this locally-made soap that comes in various delicious flavours, like Environ-Mint and Sustainable Spice.
Anyone who’s even slightly eco-conscious has likely ditched the plastic shower loofah for something less wasteful. When I made the switch, I was fortunate to discover the mighty Konjac sponge! These marvellous scrubbers are made from Konjac, a root vegetable originating in southeast Asia. They have a delightful spongy texture that gently exfoliates without the need for scrubs or exfoliants. Once they wear out after a year or so, they can be tossed into the compost!
Lifetime-Quality Kent Hair Brush
I’m a buy it right, buy it once kinda guy because I find higher quality products more enjoyable to use and much less wasteful. When it comes to hair care, no brand is better for this than Kent of England. These folks have been making brushes since 1777; their hair brushes are the best I’ve ever used. The boar bristle detangles, softens, and shines hair, whether it’s the hair on your head or the beard on your face! While I’ve had mine for almost a decade, I’ve met folks who have had their Kent brushes for 50+ years. Even if they eventually wear out, the wood and animal hair construction could be composted! It’s hard to beat that kind of lifespan for a hairbrush.
I hope this list helps you get a few folks crossed off yours. We have a ton of exciting products with a little something for everyone, so if you need help finding the right gift, don’t hesitate to send us a message or visit us in the Calgary shop!