8 Eco Friendly Shaving Creams Made By Ethical Brands (2023)
Shaving cream shouldn’t be packaged in a can that’s impossible to recycle, or filled with harmful petrochemicals.
There’s simply no reason to keep supporting these brands when plenty of eco friendly shaving creams exist!
So treat your skin right by ditching the fossil fuels, and start shaving without them.
I’ll cover the best shaving options out there, and we’ll also discuss the environmental and health impacts of some of these questionable ingredients, in more detail.
Let’s start by looking at the shaving cream options:
Eco Friendly Shaving Cream Options
EcoRoots – Top Choice
When I first started buying sustainable bathroom products, I tried shaving with bars of hand soap – and if you’re someone who’s prone to razor burn from shaving, let me give you a bit of advice: don’t do that.
Instead, get your hands on a proper shaving soap, one that looks incredibly simple but works just as well as traditional creams.
A bar like the one EcoRoots makes, my current favorite, made from only a handful of plant based ingredients like avocado oil and citrus essential oils. And yes, I know it just looks like a super basic square of soap, but the reason it’s my favorite is because of how well it lathers into cream that’s useful for shaving.
And the lather doesn’t gunk up razors either, which can be an issue with a lot of shaving soaps, as they’re generally a bit thicker than creams from a can.
Instead of trying and failing to gather up enough soap to prevent any nicks, a bit of water and a few swipes of EcoRoot’s shaving bar is really all you’ll need (depending on how long it’s been, of course).
Their soap is also pretty moisturizing, so your skin won’t immediately dry out after shaving, similar to their face wash – another favorite of mine.
Extra EcoRoots Info:
- 1% For The Planet Member
Etee’s Black Forest shaving bar looks nearly identical to EcoRoot’s, aside from the shape.
In terms of its shaving success, Etee’s bar is also fantastic as it lathers up quite well, and has a pleasant and mild earthy fragrance.
It doesn’t have quite as much foaminess as my first choice, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
If you’re looking for a shaving cream to use on thicker hair (like a beard or your pits), EcoRoots may be better. But if you just need an everyday shaving soap for thinner hair or your legs, for example – Etee’s is an excellent option.
And since it’s not incredibly foamy – it won’t clog up your razor, probably even less so than EcoRoot’s bar. I’d highly recommend checking out some other products like their hair care bars and toothpaste tablets.
Note: As of my most recent update, it looks like Etee is restocking their shaving bar.
Ethique’s Tip-to-Toe shaving bar is actually formulated to be both a shampoo as well, making it a great budget option for those wanting to try out a few options.
Another thing you can consider doing is ordering some of Ethique’s test bars – which are just tiny versions of their regular products, but are cheaper and smaller, making them great for experimenting with new stuff.
If you don’t shave often, the smaller version might actually be big enough to last you a while anyways, since it is pretty concentrated (and tiny concentrated bars are also great for travel).
The bar itself is probably best used for shaving even if they say it works for shampoo too, as it’s not really that moisturizing. But still, it’s super convenient for some.
Extra Ethique Info:
- Certified B Corp
- Certified Palm Oil Free
- Leaping Bunny Member
- 2% sales to charity
Savon Diligences, who specialize in soap-making, have some of the most aesthetically pleasing bars of soap I’ve ever seen.
And yes, I know aesthetics don’t mean much when it comes to shaving cream – but hey, I’m a sucker for quality art.
Their shaving bars are made from a handful of ingredients like olive and coconut oil, tea tree and thyme essential oils, as well as beeswax, so if you’re avoiding animal products you may want to look elsewhere.
Tea tree oil in particular is thought to have minor antibacterial properties, making their shaving soap a decent choice for those who want a super-clean shave.
Solde Luna Crafts
Solde Luna Crafts make a cold-pressed, fragrance free, vegan shaving soap bar primarily made from bentonite clay, plant butters, and oils.
Bentonite clay is a super interesting skincare ingredient, as it forms a nice creamy paste upon contact with water, so adding it to a shaving bar makes for a particularly smooth razor glide.
So if you’re looking for a mild shaving soap to reduce razor burn, that’s also fragrance-free (it only retains its natural, earthy scent), this could be one of the better options out there for you.
You may also like their vegan sunscreen, if this shaving soap stands out to you!
Extra Solde Luna Craft Info:
- Etsy Star Seller
If you’re on the hunt for a good deal, RainwaterBotanical’s shaving soaps may be the most budget-friendly option on the list.
Because the bars are big! And finding affordable sustainable products isn’t always that easy, as they’re generally made with more expensive, high quality ingredients.
But RainwaterBotanicals manages to pump out incredible plant based products that are also on the larger size without costing an arm and a leg.
The two fragrances are more on the earthy side, filling your bathroom with a pleasant aroma and making for an immersive shaving experience.
Extra RainwaterBotanicals Info:
- Etsy Star Seller
Orange Fuzz makes another chunky shaving soap bar in a few rarer scents like beer and clay, spiced citrus, or bourbon and tabac.
They also make aftershave and a variety of shaving kits – which come with things like brushes, jars of soap, and mugs all packaged in plastic free bags and boxes.
And that’s actually how they recommend using the soap, by lathering it up in a jar or mug with a brush, but it’s not necessary at all.
So Orange Fuzz’s Etsy shop could be considered a sustainable shaving depot in a lot of ways, as you really can’t go wrong by using them for all your shaving needs.
Extra Orange Fuzz Info:
- Etsy Star Seller
Katie Mae Naturals
KatieMaeNaturals has a few different shaving soap scents like lavender cedarwood, orange vanilla, and patchouli.
Their popular Etsy shop soaps is pretty well known for expertly crafted soaps with a personal touch – and they’re all totally plastic and petrochemical free.
Honestly, they may have some of the most unique soap scents out there, all of which are handcrafted in small batches.
These shaving bars lather up quite well, and leave your skin moisturized without being overly greasy or outcompeting any other fragrances you’ve used.
Their soap does contain a bit of beeswax, however, if you’re someone avoiding all animal products!
Extra Katie Mae Naturals Info:
- Etsy Star Seller
Why does shaving cream produce so much waste?
Shaving cream is one of those personal care products that unfortunately comes in aerosol cans, more often than not.
So there’s more to the issue of shaving waste aside from plastic, making it a particularly questionable product on a grand scale. Being made from aluminum isn’t the issue either, it’s the fact that aerosol cans are nearly impossible to recycle – even if they are metal.
Nowadays, aerosol cans use volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as propellants, which aren’t as harmful for the ozone layer as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) – the chemicals responsible for the “hole” in our ozone layer (which is more like thinning) – but those have largely been phased out anyways.
However, VOCs in general are still terrible for the environment and some of them are even known carcinogens.
By using shaving creams or bars that aren’t associated with this tangled mess of unsustainable packaging, you’re reducing a substantial amount of waste in your life. And plant based ingredients are easy to compost, compared to petrochemicals!
If you want to see a bigger list of options, you can find more within my guide on plastic free skincare brands.
Which shaving cream ingredients are best to avoid?
You could be exposing yourself to harmful chemicals in shaving cream formulas everytime you shave. These range from things like preservatives to foaming agents, and pose a danger to our health and the environment in a variety of ways.
I’ve underlined some commonly added petrochemicals, animal products, and other harmful ingredients below that you may find on your shaving cream ingredient label:
When you shave, you absorb tiny amounts of chemicals through your skin and inhale or swallow some as well.
Obviously it’s not a huge amount all at once, but why be consistently exposed everyday over the course of a lifetime when it’s not necessary?
If you want a longer list of problem chemicals, you can check out my skincare ingredient guide, but let’s explore a few for now:
Ethanolamines are used as emulsifiers and surfactants in cosmetic products, and you may spot Triethanolamine (TEA) in particular on the back of your can or bottle of shaving cream.
In general, ethanolamines have been linked to hormonal disruption, and may even be carcinogenic towards humans, depending on the level of exposure.
Ethanolamines are also petrochemicals, an industry which has regular disastrous spills in our oceans where animals such as sea turtles have to be captured and physically wiped off if they’re exposed – or most likely die.
And ethanolamines are quite dangerous to the health of aquatic organisms in general, because they don’t biodegrade well in saltwater; instead, they tend to bioaccumulate.
BHT & BHA
Butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) and butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) are petrochemicals commonly used as preservatives in shaving cream, and they’re also industrially produced in mass amounts.
And yes, I will be talking about oil spills a bit more. Here’s what oil globules look like on the ocean’s surface after a spill:
Aside from being associated with petroleum, BHT and BHA are considered to be category 1 endocrine disruptors, suspected carcinogens, and can lead to organ toxicity when exposed to large amounts.
So these are the kinds of things we add to most shaving creams, all of which enter the environment through residential and commercial wastewater after we wash them down our drains!
What animal products does shaving cream have in it?
You can avoid animal products and the testing that goes along with them by using cruelty free and vegan shaving cream brands, like the ones above!
Some animal-based ingredients you may see on traditional brands are things like:
- Glycerine (animal fats)
- Lanolin (sheeps wool)
- Animal derived fragrances
Quality eco friendly shaving creams aren’t hard to find as long as you know where to look!
Swapping your current shaving cream out for a sustainable option is a simple, easy change you can make to your lifestyle today, and one you’ll be glad you made everytime you shave.
Making small changes to your personal care routine matters, and supporting brands who don’t subscribe to the use of plastic and petrochemicals is one of the best places to start.