Saturday, January 15, 2011

Smooth Yoga Legs and Shaving Cream

One of the things I'm self conscious about during a yoga class is having hairy legs. Or prickly legs. I get that it's totally a western, cultural thing- which is annoying but I just really don't like hairy legs. And I can't stand the thought of the teacher coming along unaware that they'll be adjusting my furry legs whilst in shoulderstand. ICK.

Anyhoo, that being said I was never "that girl" who shaved her legs every single day. I just didn't have the patience or commitment. I still don't. (I know there are women out there who shave their legs every day, I had friends who did.... which still amazes me). But I did really like the fancy schmancy shaving cream stuff. The thought of shaving my legs without some perfumed mess of chemical goop was mind boggling. I mean, my legs would erupt in bumpy, cut up monstrosities if I did that right?

I had a moment in BC when I realized just how ridiculous the whole process was. Shaving cream has a whole crap load of weird chemicals, stuff to make it smell good (perfume which can have formaldehyde), stuff to make it foam, stuff to make it seep into your skin and blood stream (moisturizers) allowing the other foaming, perfuming agents to just march right in. That and the packaging, no way to ever recycle.

So, still believing I needed something specific for shaving my legs, I bought "method" shaving cream. Still has chemicals, still packaged in a non recyclable container. I then moved to this special "shaving" bar of soap made by Birch Bark soap (which I adored).

Then I ran out. And being a little lazy, I was forced to use whatever I had in the shower. Body wash, regular body soap, conditioner, shampoo. And you know what? They all worked just fine.

We've all been duped into thinking that in order to shave our legs we need some special shaving lotion/cream. An marketing creation, making us think we need a product so we'll buy it. It's a complete, weird, cultural crock.

Never again will I buy a cream/soap/lotion specific for shaving my legs. A moisturizing locally made bar of soap will do just find. No packaging, no scary ingredients. Perfect for the lazy eco-yogi(ni)!

Now off we go to watch our wonderful Yoga Instructor Helen Fong give a talk on Meditation! :)

Blessings!

article copyright of EcoYogini at ecoyogini.blogspot.com

20 comments:

  1. I gave up on shaving cream years ago when I realized soap would do the trick! However, there are some soaps that are better than others. I also LOVE the shaving bar from Birch Bark Soaps but I ran out too...so now I use the lather from my hair from her amazing shampoo bar! The lather is so luxurious it feels amazing on the legs! I know you are not a fan of shampoo bars for your hair but this one is also great for the legs! It is her special recipe for me so if you are interested in giving it a try before committing let me know! :)

    PS. I shave every day in the summer and fall (skit weather) but only every 2-3 in the winter! Thanks goodness for tights and pants!

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  2. yeah see i never even tried special shaving creams...always just used soap (or shampoo if that's all i had) from the start, and find that anything works for me. glad to hear it's not just me, and that this is yet another corporate marketing as i suspected.

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  3. I have a bazillion bottles of shaving cream in my closet. Mom always buys me some for Christmas, but I'm super lazy so rarely shave my legs. I should probably donate it to a woman's shelter or something.

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  4. haha...i've always used the shampoo lather from my head on my legs - never have used shaving cream - plus it's using it twice and never have had razor burn :)

    ps - here where i live, i'm one of the few shaven ones :)

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  5. I stumbled upon your blog from Five Seed on FB --- I just had to comment. I don't shave every day.. I also do not have the patience for it. I have used Dr. Bronner's Lavender or citrus for the past 2 years.. and you know what.. works just fine!

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  6. I just use soap. Might not be fancy and foamy but it does the trick.

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  7. Same, I've been using my Alchemy brand shampoo to shave my legs for ages now... started out because I ran out of shaving cream and then I realised... what was the point!

    I use less shampoo than I do conditioner on my hair anyway, so now I have another use for it. Awesome!

    And no way do I shave my legs everyday ;)

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  8. you can also use coconut oil. It does have a tendency to clog the razor so it's best to do it in a super hot bath or with a cup of super hot water in the shower with you.

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  9. I read your blog all the time and just had to comment! I do shave my legs everyday (something along the lines of, if I'm gonna do it, I'm gonna do it properly...) and I use oil. Olive, almond, peach kernal or whatever I have in the house. I add a few drops of essential oils. I find it great as it moisturises your legs and doesn't just run off down the drain!

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  10. This is a little off-topic, but I was thinking about the whole cultural "you must be hairless and smooth" thing and all the marketing that goes into that. So, I decided I wouldn't shave (or pluck my eyebrows) for a month, just to see what it was like. I'm two weeks in and it's a little weird, but liberating! I don't notice my legs so much (hello, winter) but my fuzzy armpits are still kind of surprising to me. It's been interesting to go from self-consciousness about who might see them in yoga class to not really caring. I'm sure I'll go back to a more regular shaving regimen in February (I currently have Kiss My Face shave lotion, which is nice but I'd probably do just as well with regular soap or shampoo), but I'm glad I decided to take this month to experience my natural hairiness. :)

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  11. Hahaha... great post! I am one of "those girls" that shaves everyday. But I did give up on shaving cream about 4 years ago. I just use soap as well! It does the trick perfectly. I have saved so much money (almost $6 per container!) and have prevented so many chemicals from going onto my skin, being inhaled, and going down the drain! :)

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  12. Hi Eco! Funny isn't it . . that line between where am I buying into the status quote and when do I stand strong and resist. Do I die my hair, go for a tan in the dead of winter, shave my armpits, pierce my navel . . . . interesting. I thought I'd drop a line to say that Ray Long has just published 4 incredible books on anatomy and yoga, along with a new blog launch that would probably fit well in your blog roll) Come and check out the page turners at www.DailyBandha.com

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  13. Personally, I like to keep my bikini line somewhat shaved (it just makes me happier), and for that, I absolutely need shaving cream. I envy anyone who doesn't need to use it to survive that process without razor burn/bumps! But yea, never saw the point in making the effort for the legs. Thanks for the thoughtful post.

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  14. I'm 54 years old and about 2 year ago I stated using silk-epil.That I had bought for my daughter and she didn't want to use. It's this little shaver that pull the hair off your legs. There is no need of shaving cream or soap. It's great, now the hair on my legs don't grow as fast and I don't have to do it as offen. I only thing I regret is that I didn't start when I was younger.

    MOM

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  15. haha mom, the epil lady was PAINFUL!!! i have such a low pain tolerance, it was hours of torture lol. but i'm really glad that you like it- you've always been tougher than me!

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  16. P.S. I've given you an award! http://tasteforhealthy.blogspot.com/2011/01/thank-you-for-award.html

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  17. Where did you get the Birch Bark soap? I know of the lady who makes it, and she does have a website, a blog and sells it on Etsy.

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  18. @Tal: actually I bought the shaving stuff at the Yarmouth Naturals store. During Sherry's maternity leave, and lack of online soap options, she supplied the Yarmouth Naturals store... so I got some soap for xmas as well as a few weeks before even!

    But I haven't seen the shaving soap for a while. At the same time, you could really just use any of her soaps for shaving :)

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  19. A different perspective here, but with some eco-considerations as well.

    I do not shave. But that doesnt' mean I am "au naturel". When I first found out that there was this thing called "waxing" that did not cut you or give you a razor rash, and that you only needed to do every few weeks, I knew that was for me. This was about 20 years ago! I get only my lower legs waxed, because the hair on my thighs is very short and fine, and also my underarms. And after all these years of waxing, the hairs are finer and quite sparse, so that I only have to get my underarms done every couple of months (and I do that only in summer), and my lower legs every 4 weeks.

    My dilemma has been the waste generated by waxing. I have "solved" this for myself by 1) going where they use French was only (that's the wax that hardens and doesn't require paper or cloth strips, additional waste), and going even longer between leg waxings in winter - maybe every 2 months or so. Since I am always in boots, pants or heavy dark tights in winter, this works great for me. But I do admit, it is not ideal and have thought of "permanent" laser hair removal.

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  20. So honestly I don't even use soap for lather when shaving. When I first started shaving mom bought me cream, and I'm pretty sure that lasted maybe two bottles. I hated that so much of it slid off before I could even swipe it off my propped up leg with the razor. So pretty much for the last 17 years it's just been a wet body part in the shower and my razor---and it's worked out fine. Ironically I have very sensitive legs (so much so that I used to have to wash them with special soap), but I've never had a problem shaving with just water. I do shave almost every day just because my hair grows just that fast and with dark hair it can make my pits at least look unshaven---always lovely. :) The big thing I go back and forth on are razors. For about a year I used Preserve recycled and recyclable razors, but I hated that they were flimsier. Then the hub and I started sharing a razor but swapping out heads and that has worked better...Plus to be honest, men's razors give an amazingly closer shave.

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