Save fish a drink, shave in the sink (Day 208)…

razors by the sink

Whenever I go on vacation with my sister, she always lets me shower first because I take about five minutes — she takes at least 20. Now, I honestly don’t think I could spend 20 minutes in the shower if I tried, so I often ask her what on earth she’s doing in there for so long. She usually offers a vague response (typical of most people who take long showers), but I’m pretty sure that at least half the time is spent shaving.

Because I’m not a hairy person, I usually only need to shave every couple weeks — and I do so, of course, with my Preserve recycled razor and natural shaving cream (actually, as it turns out, this product has some not-so-cool ingredients like Methylparaben and Propylparaben in it, so when it’s finished I’ll be switching to something else).

Often, I’ll shave after a bath and use the water left in the tub, but now that I’m done with baths that’s not an option. Rather than go about this beauty regimen in the shower, however, I’m going to shave in the sink. I’m guessing that filling it up once — with cold water, naturally — will use less than letting the tap trickle the whole time, but perhaps I’ll experiment a bit and see.

Photo courtesy of stay classy internets on Flickr

16 Responses to Save fish a drink, shave in the sink (Day 208)…

  1. E MacDonald says:

    Even more environmentally gentle – stop shaving. It feels bad for a bit, but then no different. Saves the razors, soap and water. Plus it is warmer in the winter.

  2. Esme says:

    I was really disappointed when I saw that Kiss My Face products have just as much chemical crap as something from the drugstore. I used to love their products. I know they have an organics line too but it makes me not trust it -it seems like a marketing ploy.
    Here’s a question- is getting laser hair removal done ultimately more environmentally gentle than years of shaving? I know those lasers use a fairly large amount of energy but whats worse-that or all the plastics and chemicals that wind up in the landfill and in one’s body over years? I don’t need to shave myself really but a friend asked me and I had no answer for her.

  3. blah says:

    I totally understand the fact that you don’t want to let your legs just grow hairy. I don’t think it looks nice. I think a lot of the reason as to why people aren’t as environmentally responsible as they can be is because they don’t want to looking like a hairy, oily person that smells like patchouli and plays hackie sack. However many people hate it, you have to make environmentalism seem sexy and not make it seem like you are giving up too much and still managing to save the planet. People will not stop driving cars, but they will drive a Hybrid…same concept.

    Anyways, back to what I was originally going to mention… I guess being in the military gave me a baptism by fire into the world of super short, yet efficient showers. I can do everything from shamp/cond, wash my face, brush my teeth, soap up and shave in about 5 or 6 minutes. If you can’t do that (and trust me, it took a long time before I could), then why don’t you just save the water as your taking a shower? You really don’t need a lot of water to shave your legs in the first place and if you just plugged the tub while your taking a shower, then you could save all you need. If you’ve got a stand-up shower, just take a bucket in there with you.

  4. emily says:

    Oh, no! And here I thought that my Kiss My Face shaving cream was all eco-friendly… well, at least I don’t shave my legs, so the tube that I got from my mom 4 years ago (she wanted to encourage me to shave, haha!) is still 1/2 full. Where can I find info on what products by them are natural and which are nasty? I have Moisture Shave for extra sensitive skin; Methylparaben and Propylparaben are both in it.

    Better yet, how about a website that lists what all these chemical names are, what they stand for (petroleum blah blah derivative, I don’t know), and which should be most avoided? Maybe I could google it, but I’m lazy, and I bet one of your readers knows one.

    Anyone know whether glycerine is considered a natural product?

  5. LG Adam says:

    I’m fascinated by people who take long showers (not is a pervy way!) – what are they doing in there? Fve minutes shouuld be enough for anyone, surely.

  6. gord says:

    Do you stand in the sink, lift each leg up to the counter or stand on the floor and splash cold water onto yourself before shaving? And, are you thinking about giving up the regimen entirely?

    (Really, I want to know.)

    Then I’m going to tell my wife because she sends a lot of hot water out to sea every couple of days for the sake of…what? I don’t know. And I passed calculus.

  7. emma says:

    I’m not that hairy…I just like to be REALLY clean.

  8. Heather says:

    I take short showers, but plug the tub when I need to shave. I sit on the side and use the collected water for shaving.

  9. gettinggreen says:

    Gord, no, I definitely don’t stand IN the sink… that would probably break it. I just lift a leg up. And Blah — that’s a great idea, plugging the bath while I’m showering and then just using the water from that before draining it. Maybe I’ll give that a try. And Emily — Google Environmental Working Group; their site has a very comprehensive list of which producs are safe and which ones should be avoided because of their toxins.

  10. cheaplikeme says:

    I have a bucket in the shower to catch the water while the temperature is heating up, and to catch the water that spills out of the spigot after I turn off the shower connection. I stop the shower water and use that bucket water to rinse my razor when I shave legs — then turn the water back on for a moment to rinse. The water still works fine for flushing the toilet, which is what I use it for.

  11. hateration says:

    I know people say don’t shave with soap, but they are wrong! Look for Soap Works (I don’t know where to find it, I buy it in Cabbagetown and at Fiesta Farms) lists what their soaps are good for and the teatree oil one I’ve been using works for shaving. In fact, it works well on my face too. I took it on a long trip (so as to cut down on the products I packed) and liked it so much I may be cutting facial clensers out of the equation.

  12. kim says:

    here’s a good website to check out:

    it’s got tons of products, conventional and natural/organic, and it breaks down all the ingredients and their source and affect on the body. this is the best site i’ve ever found on the subject…

    i’ve never really liked kiss my face, just due to the fact that you can’t find anything by them without any ‘perfume’ in it. avalon organics makes a pretty good lavender moisturizing shaving cream. i buy it at whole foods… and this website ranks it a 1 out of 10 on their hazardous scale.

    i suppose laser is also an option, but it’s expensive and it’s only really effective if you’ve got dark, thick hair. from the way thistle describes it (shaving once every 2 weeks) that doesn’t sound like a good option.

  13. Beth Terry says:

    I hate to admit that I too take long showers. And it’s not that I have anything to “do” in there. It just takes me a while to get warm. I’m one of those people who is always cold, and standing in a hot shower is just something that feels so good I have a hard time turning it off and going back out into the cold, cruel world. So the idea of turning off the water while naked and wet to shave my legs… well, it’s just not going to happen.

    I have, however, tried shaving my legs in the sink (with clothes on the rest of my body for warmth) and that works pretty well for me. Of course, not everyone is flexible enough to stand with one leg in the sink.

    As for razors, I switched to a double-edged safety razor a few months ago to save plastic, and it works just great. I got mine at an antique store, but you can still buy new ones online. Also, I don’t buy blades from the drugstore where they only come in 10-pack plastic blister packs. Instead, I bought a package of 100 blades from a guy on eBay. The blades are made in Israel, are really high quality, and come in a small cardboard box. Highly recommended.

  14. Mary says:

    My showers tend to take about 10 min but the majority of that time is spent trying to rinse the shampoo/conditioner out of my hair. I’ve got really thick hair. So, what I do is rinse off and get my hair wet, then turn off the water while I lather up the shampoo/conditioner, then turn the water back on to rinse. A potential problem here is having to wait a minute for the water to warm back up again. But usually if you only leave it off for a minute or two, it shouldn’t be a problem. Also, I’ve adjusted to taking sort of a lukewarm shower. In fact, I prefer it. Especially in the summer when it’s hot out. (we don’t use our air conditioner) A lukewarm shower might be too cold for people to comfortably shave their legs in. Shaving in the sink works well for me. I lift a leg up, rinse it off and then just turn the water on periodically to rinse off the razor. It’s much easier to see what you’re doing in the sink too!

    To Emily: For lists of chemicals to avoid check out
    Also, Tom’s of Maine. Their products are great and their website has a great FAQ section that talks about glycerin and other ingredients. Tom’s shave cream works REALLY well. The only problem is that it comes in a toothpaste tube that’s really hard to squeeze to get the stuff out. I need to find one of those metal key things that you use to roll the empty end of the tube around (I’ve been told these are at Art supply stores, used for tubes of paint)

    Each person is very unique which makes it difficult to prescribe one ‘best’ practice for all of these activities. Unfortunately, I have very thick, dark hair…I haven’t been able to bring myself to stop shaving completely…although I would LOVE to. I shave every couple days in the summer and then maybe once every 2 weeks in the winter when I wear long pants. (when the only person to see my legs is my husband…he obviously prefers the summer routine…)

  15. kim says:


    you mentioned that you are looking for a metal key dealy for the ends of tubes of cosmetics/gels/etc… i understand that crabtree & evelyn sells them. i saw them there a couple years back, they may still have them. good luck.

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