In the era of metal straws and reusable tumblers, the idea of disposable razors — or their ridiculously expensive replacement blades — seems hopelessly old-fashioned and somewhat irresponsible, but until recently, alternatives were few.
While some, like myself, took the plunge and switched to safety razors, they aren’t without their drawbacks. The fixed head and added weight of the safety razor adds a steep learning curve. They’re also routinely single-blade operations vs the multi-blade options most of us have grown accustomed to. And, while many safety razors have an old-fashioned charm, their bulky, no-frills aesthetic can leave something to be desired.
Leaf, founded via a viral Kickstarter campaign in 2016, saw a need in the market and designed a shaving experience to fulfill it. With an eye towards reducing, and eventually eliminating, the estimated 2 billion disposable razor cartridges discarded each year, they’ve scaled from a small, loyal following to shipping worldwide via their site leafshave.com. Leaf’s razors are sleek, beautiful, sustainable — thanks to recyclable standard blades — and available in a bevy of trendy finishes like Rose Gold and Obsidian.
Why I Made the Switch to LeafLeaf uses standard safety blades, which retail for as little as $0.20 each, meaning a full replacement rings in at approx $0.60, much less than my old razor, which typically cost me $3-5 per replacement. Click To Tweet
While the initial buy-in is a bit steep compared to your average disposable razor, with packages starting at $79, Leaf’s razor uses standard safety blades, which retail for as little as $0.20 each, meaning a full replacement rings in at approx $0.60, much less than my old favorite razor, the Schick Hydro, which typically cost me somewhere between $3 and $5 per replacement cartridge. One study, released by American Laser Centers, theorized that over the course of their lifetime, women will shave 7,718.4 times and spend approximately $10,000 related products. Using those numbers, and assuming I use each blade twice (3,859.20 x $3.20), my lifetime total comes to a whopping $12,349.44.
I’d already made the switch to a no-waste safety razor for cost reasons when I discovered Leaf, but its unique design features, well-crafted components, most notably, the pivoting head design and ability to support multiple blades convinced me to switch.
Because Leaf’s razor uses 1.5 standard blades instead of a specialty design I can purchase replacement blades almost anywhere in the world — handy info to have since loose safety blades are not allowed in carry on luggage. The replacements can also be purchased in larger increments like this 100 blade pack. A pack this size, at just $6.99 is enough to cover nearly 2 years worth of shaves, so I never have to worry about running out or paying ‘pink tax’ ever again.
A Closer Shave
Safety blades offer a cleaner, closer shave. Combined with a traditional safety razor they also tend to offer more opportunities to cut yourself. Leaf’s pivoting head and multi-blade clamp offers a shaving experience more like the one we’ve become used to (less cuts!) with traditional disposable razors, while offering the environmental & cost saving benefits of a safety razor.
Leaf’s design is sleek and visually appealing. Admittedly, the handle can become a bit slippery when wet and the width of the razor head can make shaving small areas a little tricky, but the combination of minimalist lines, appealing materials and its stylish, metal stand make it a welcome addition to any bathroom decor. Simply put: the monochromatic Leaf razor design makes other razors seem childish without evoking the hyper-masculine, utilitarian feel of most safety razors.
And, my absolute top #1 reason for making the switch — no more single use, mixed material cartridges!
Because disposable razors and their replacement cartridges are made out of multiple materials, they’re not recyclable outside of a few specialized programs. This means that the replacement cartridges used by some 160 million Americans as of 2019 will make their way into land fills this year. Can you imagine? Every single nicked, gummed up, rusted, contaminated disposable razor ever used is still out there shifting around in a pile somewhere, leeching into the soil. Obviously, as shaving continues to be an important personal grooming ritual for most, and the number of humans engaging in it increases, it’s unsustainable to continue as we are. The genius with Leaf is they’ve combined past wisdom, i.e. safety razors, with modern design and technology to create a product you can be proud to own and display for years to come, while eliminating single use elements from the process. With your Leaf purchase, you have the option to get a Blade Disposer, which offers a convenient way to keep used blades out of the way and, once full, can be recycled locally or shipped back to Leaf for disposal.
Win a Leaf Shave Razor!
Enter to win a Leaf Shave starter bundle valued at $109 on Instagram!
Click here for details on how to enter, eligibility and rules. Good Luck!