Olive Oil: An Earth-Friendly Alternative to Shaving Cream

As an environmentalist, I’ve always eschewed the use of shaving cream. The list of ingredients on a standard can of shaving cream is nothing short of terrifying. Standard products contain unsustainable and toxic chemicals like triethanolamine, sodium laurel sulfate, propane, and dioxane. These not only tend to dry out my sensitive skin, but they are problematic for the environment. Fortunately, I heard through friends that olive oil– which is sustainable, moisturizing and nontoxic– works wonders as an earth-friendly alternative to shaving cream. It is now my primary substitute for shaving cream.

Here are four important reasons to use olive oil instead of shaving cream.

1. It’s easy to use. Olive oil is very easy to use as a shaving cream substitute. There is no lathering involved, and accidental contact with water won’t wash it away. It clings to your skin until you shave. Simply smooth a layer of olive oil over the part of your body you wish to shave, then shave as you normally would. It isn’t a complicated or time-intensive trick.

2. It’s affordable. You can shave an entire leg with less than a teaspoon of olive oil. This makes it considerably less expensive than earth-friendly shaving gels, and somewhat less expensive than conventional products. At my rate of use, one medium-sized bottle of olive oil could easily offer enough for a year of shaving. And, because olive oil helps to protect blades and prevent rusting, you’ll save money on new razors, as well.

3. It’s good for your skin– no cuts, no rashes, no dryness.
My skin is extremely fickle. When I use shaving creams, gels or soaps to shave my legs, I cut myself every time and end up with razor burns and unbearably itchy rashes. I had no such problem when using olive oil as a substitute for shaving cream. My skin was completely smooth, comfortable and moisturized after shaving.

4. It’s good for the environment. Olive oil is a renewable resource that can be grown sustainably and organically. It is completely nontoxic and there is no significantly environmental harm in it entering our sewage systems or septic tanks. Unlike shaving cream, which is packaged in ecologically catastrophic steel, olive oil usually comes in glass bottles, which are sustainable. Olive oil is earth-friendly by any standards, especially when compared to conventional shaving products.

For me, olive oil is a perfect solution for avoiding the cost, ecological damage and skin problems I associate with conventional shaving products. I’m glad that I’ve found a product that is not only sustainable, but also functionally and economically ideal for meeting my needs.

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