Easy to customize shave, environmentally conscious, long lasting, elegant design
Price, finish availability varies, can get slippery without guard
The journey to be more environmentally conscious is a long one. I had been trying to find a more environmentally friendly way to shave for a long time. I’ve tried the typical safety razor in the past but not only did I scar myself with it (literally), I just don’t like the shave I get with only one blade. When I saw that the Leaf Razor had the option for multiple safety blades I was intrigued immediately. The cost was the big hang up for me at first, but eventually I was in a position that it was time to treat myself and I sprung for the kit.
You’ve got a few options when you first decide to try out Leaf Shave. Fortunately, everything on their site is broken down and super easy to figure out. Your best value (as is the case just about anywhere you’ve got the option to bundle products) is to get a bundled kit. I chose the original Leaf kit that comes with replacement blades, a stand, and a recycling tin. As a bonus, you have 6 different finishes to choose from so you’ll be able to match your decor or personality easily, or just be able to keep yours separate from someone else’s!
All of the packaging I didn’t keep was able to be recycled with the exception of a few stickers, one of which was around the stand and I haven’t gotten all of the residue off yet. To be fair though, I haven’t tried very hard. The razor and stand themselves are elegantly crafted, feeling sturdy in the hand but not heavy or cumbersome. Together they take up very little space overall.
It’s very clear that a lot of thought went into the design of the Leaf and Twig razors. On the rear of the head you’ll find a dial that you turn clockwise to tighten and counterclockwise to loosen. Loosening it fully allows you to open the blade holder and insert your desired number of blades, before closing and tightening.
While some people may find this razor fairly intuitive to use, the company provides easy to follow instructions for loading, prepping your skin, shaving, and even care and maintenance of your razor.
Care and Maintenance:
With anything that’s designed to last you for a long time, there’s usually some level of maintenance involved. Luckily with the Leaf and Twig razors the requirements are minimal. After every 1-3 uses you should open the blade holder and rinse everything off, drying thoroughly before reassembling. Once a month or so, take everything apart and clean the blade holders with a drop of dish soap and a soft brush. If you find your razor still needs a deep cleaning you can soak it for up to 10 minutes in a solution of 1 part white vinegar to 2 parts water before cleaning with soap; especially great if you’ve got issues with hard water and buildup.
Just like with hair maintenance, replacing your blades can follow a general schedule whether it needs it or not, or lean more towards taking action when you’re not getting the results you want anymore. Straight from the FAQ section, even Leaf suggests experimenting to find the right frequency for you. Most people tend to change their blades every 6-10 uses, but depending on your hair texture and the amount of shaving you’re doing, you can go a few months on a single set of blades.
Blades can be purchased directly from Leaf Shave, or you can get standard safety razor blades and break them in half (safely, inside the paper) to use them.
Gone are the days of disposing of old razor blades through the hole in your medicine cabinet! As weird as that may sound, I promise you that was an actual thing once upon a time. Instead you can use either the collection tin that Leaf has, or any small tin you have laying around, securely package it, and mail it right to the company at the address provided on their website. Alternatively, you can contact local scrap collection centers or your local recycling guidelines to see if there’s an option near you for disposal.
My personal feelings:
I stopped using any kind of shaving cream/lotion/etc a long time ago when most disposable cartridges started coming with a lotion strip and typically used that to help determine when the head needed to be replaced. My very first shave with Leaf was in a bath that also had coconut oil in it, so the blades got gummed up pretty fast. Totally my fault.
I struggled through a few more shaves before changing the blades and throughly cleaning the rest of the blade holders and trying again. While I don’t necessarily feel like I have overly sensitive skin, I did feel like my skin was somewhat irritated by using 3 blades with nothing but water so I switched to using some sort of soap, lotion, conditioner, etc when I started shaving and definitely felt like I was getting more desirable results.
I tend to shave my arms, underarms, and legs 1-2 times a week and so far with just thoroughly rinsing once a week I feel like my blades have been good for about a month or so. My only real complaint about the design is that the metal handle tends to get slippery when you mix in a shaving lotion and there’s even a solution for that! There’s a sleeve you can add to the handle of your razor to make it easier to hold on to while you’re using it.
For me, I think I probably need to be replacing the blades more often than I have been, but I’m still really happy with my choice. I got my husband a set for Father’s Day, and so far his only complaint was that when his sideburns were really long he needed to hold them out of the way with one hand to keep the longer hairs from being caught up with the sides of the blades.
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