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My Hygiene Routine

There is a meme about gendered products, such as Q-tips for men, or soap for men, razors for men, etc. There's also this YouTube advertisement berating all other soaps for men, claiming that their soap for men is the best. I thought it'd be funny to make an advertisement where I advertise the best soap for all people, which is just water. I rarely use body soap, because it dries out my skin. And I don't stink. I also rarely wash my hair. Hot water in the shower is typically sufficient for washing. Little bits of soap are nice for armpits and other areas, but full-body soaping is mostly pointless. It'd be worth washing my face regularly to help with dirty pores, but so far I haven't bothered. I'll have to make a natural soap or buy one.

I don't use razors often, because I've grown a beard instead, which also functions as sunblock for my face. I use electric hair cutters to trim my beard and other regions. Sometimes I'll use a razor to edge the top of my beard along the cheek, remove a couple stray hairs from my nose, or cut away the unsightly unibrow. A razor will last me about 8-12 months before needing to be replaced. If I shaved daily, I'd go through razors about every 10-14 days. Going an entire month would be very painful.

Baking soda is an amazing hygiene product, provided your skin doesn't react to it. I dust baking soda in my armpits sometimes instead of using deodorant, and some days, I don't use any deodorant at all. Baking soda also is capable of cleaning your skin in place of soap. I've yet to make my own deodorant, but the basic recipe includes baking soda, coconut oil, and some fragrance. Once I do this, I'll be set.

Beard oil is typically made up of various cooking oils and soap oils: grape-seed, jojoba, and coconut, to name a few. So on the occasion that I want to oil up my beard, I go into the kitchen, blot my palm with some grape-seed oil, and rub it into my beard. It's simple and much cheaper than "beard oil." There is no reason to buy a specifically packaged beard product when you can just get cooking oil, and if you wanted to get fancy, you could add juniper, mint, or some other "manly" scent.

At this point I still use Q-tips, but I try to use one side for both ears, thereby doubling the lifespan of the box. I'm sure there are more environmentally friendly ways to clean one's ears, but at the moment, I have other priorities.

Eventually I plan to buy a straight razor, make my own soap, scented beard oil, scented coconut deodorant, and find a solution for washing my ears. I should find a sustainably packaged toothpaste, but again, baking soda is a capable substitute on occasion, helping your tube last longer before it's discarded into the ocean and into a whale's digestive track.

After I make some real progress towards a zero-waste hygiene routine, I will update this post and include some photos or other media. The hygiene industry is disgusting and generates significant amounts of plastic waste, while requiring many synthetic chemicals and other petroleum derivatives. If you can wash your hair less frequently, shave less often, and avoid disposable products, it helps reduce our collective impact. And stop over-paying for fancy "beard oil." You should consider using grape-seed oil anyway, since it has a higher flash point for cooking and therefore won't smoke up in your kitchen.