Category Archives: Skin Deep

Safety Razor for Women’s Shaving

For ages, I considered trading my Gillette Venus or Schick Quattro (I have switched back-and-forth between these two women’s razors for a long time) for a safety razor. The prospect was a little scary, and I was too comfortable with my old routine, but I finally did it, and I’m so glad!

It’s not that I ever had any problems with the two types of shaving products I used, but the amount of plastic that accumulated in the bathroom trash can while each day I listened to the calamitous environmental consequences of waste and waste pollution on news podcasts became too much to bear.

A couple of months ago, I bit the bullet, as they say, and bought literally the first inexpensive safety razor that came up on Amazon. You’d hope someone purporting to inform an audience about this would delve into some research first, and I did, but I found the price premiums on the double-edged safety razors marketed to women had more to do with the pink handles than with an innovative shaving mechanism or functional design difference.

It just seemed as though the experience would be more or less the same, and I didn’t want to splurge in case safety razors were a definite no-no for me. But good news–they aren’t!

The razor I bought came with twenty blades, and I am on the third one now, shaving about once every five days, at the same rate as previously. Each blade lasts for 3-4 shaves of my full legs and produces so much less waste in the end than my made-for-women razor cartridges (the only thing that ends in the trash is a single thin blade, no plastic).

There was definitely a bit of a learning curve, and on that, I wish I’d done a little more reading before starting. For example, I’ve found that with a double-edged razor, I simply don’t have the luxury of applying pressure liberally or dragging the blade along my skin for long strokes to save time. Instead, short strokes with very, very gentle pressure are the only way to keep from nicking the sensitive skin on my legs.

I also have to lather up and trace my skin twice with the blade each time to get the same closeness as my Gillette provided once through. So ultimately, it takes a little more time and focus, with a razor handle that is not nearly as ergonomic (it starts to slip out of my hand when I get the slightest bit of shaving soap on my hand).

Following my first time shaving with the new razor, I remember actually feeling a surge of gratitude for the product designers at Gillette. My user experience with the Venus razor had been so absolutely seamless that shaving had never really been a noticeable part of my routine, but this time I couldn’t not notice as I stood with blood prickling out of at least three dozen spots all over my legs.

I’m sharing the struggle bits because I don’t want to contribute to the idea, which is generally a lie, that “green” products perform just as well as any other. An other which has usually has had countless R&D resources poured into it and that doesn’t face the same need to conform to some environmental standard. This one certainly doesn’t do as well from a performance standpoint alone! But I have chosen to keep at it because it seems almost like a bit of a moral imperative to do so. It doesn’t escape me that it’s a laughably small contribution on the grand scale of the worldwide trash “problem” but if it’s one of the only things I can personally do, why not? In the end, my legs are still hairless, and I’m completely accustomed to my new routine.

It truly was mostly just a matter of adjusting the pressure and dedicating an extra minute or two to the task. If you go this route, you’ll feel so, so much better knowing you’re not needlessly spending so much money on being hair-free and not polluting the world/oceans/landfills with so much of your trash.

I’ve replaced a few other conventionally wasteful personal hygiene and self-care products that I use regularly and will be sharing about them soon. Thoughts?

Beauty Review: Korres Greek Yoghurt Foaming Cream Cleanser

Recently, I received a selection of sample products to try, as a “gift with purchase” from Shoppers Drug Mart. It was very exciting, and I always love receiving gifts with my purchases, especially if the thing I purchased was something I was going to buy anyway. I feel so loved when they have a promotion like this one.

Anyway, one of the gifts I received was the Korres Greek Yoghurt Foaming Cream Cleanser. It came in a very generous sample size of 0.68fl oz (or 20 ml). It doesn’t seem like much, but a little bit of this product is going a very long way, and so I have used this more than 10 times in the last several days (or weeks?) and there seems to be much more  left in the bottle still.

Photo of the the sample size of the Korres Greek Yoghurt Foaming Cream Cleanser inside my open palm. It's a white, palm-sized squeeze container with a light pink rectangle where the text appears. :)

The large sample size I received in my gift with purchase.

I wanted to share my thoughts on this product with you.

Before I began using this, I gave the Proactiv system a try. It left my skin a bit unhappy, so I needed something gentle, and that’s what this is: It’s a very gentle, light cleanser—but it still makes me feel like I’m pampering myself, because it smells and feels luxurious.

The bottle says that it’s for all skin types, and I would agree, but I want to stipulate that it’s very gentle. If you’re hoping it will perform miracles on your skin, by erasing dullness or acne, then it may not be the right cleanser for you.

It has a beautiful but subtle floral scent that I love, and a 1/2 pea sized amount will perform that gentle foaming action (which can be intensified if you use more than just a small little bit). My skin always feels soft, beautiful and fresh after I use this.

Sometimes I oil cleanse to remove makeup, and my experience has been that this cleanser doesn’t fully strip all of the coconut oil fats from my face because it is so gentle. But for me that is not a negative. Coconut oil has so many benefits, and I like that when I wash with this after oil cleansing, I can keep some of the protective barrier from the coconut oil without leaving my skin totally oily (if I didn’t wash at all).

Now a little about the brand.

Korres Natural Products is a Greek brand, and for some reason I love that. I am not Greek, but for a beauty brand, this is not one of the “usual” countries, and supporting Greece seems like a privilege in itself. So I love that… I would love to visit Greece one day.

A picture of the back of the Korres cleanser sample-size bottle. The English text on the back of the bottle reads: "A rich indulgent foaming cream that removes effectively impurities, make-up and mascara without irritating. Formulated with soothing Greek Yoghurt and natural cleansing agents for excellent tolerance by the eyes and skin. Soap free. Use: Rub gently into wet skin and rinse off with plenty of water. Caution: Avoid direct contact with eyes."

The back of the Korres cleanser sample-size bottle

There are a lot of good things about Korres. They are against animal testing, and they do not hire anybody to test their products for them. I really appreciate that, and I am grateful for it. Not testing on animals is important to me because I don’t see why any living being should suffer for me to put something on my face or feel good about myself. Internal beauty is not worth a trade for external beauty. I love that Korres doesn’t force women to make that choice.

I wish all of their products were plant-based however. They are not. The product I am reviewing contains yogurt, and some of their other products also contain animal products. I have watched documentaries on dairy farming, and that is one of the reasons I rarely consume dairy. Cows are innocent and loving animals that do not deserve to be mistreated, tortured, and killed by the farming industry.

They do also carry vegan products, and if I were to purchase a product from Korres, I would have to choose from their list of vegan products.

Vicky at Ethical Elephant is on top of all these things, and she works very hard to compile product lists and share vegan and cruelty-free product information. We’re very lucky (you and I) that she has already created one for Korres. You can find it here.