When it comes to quick and easy hair removal, shaving is undoubtedly the most popular choice for people around the world and with summer around the corner, razors are in higher demand than ever. However, the question on everyone’s mind remains: What is the best and environment-friendliest way to dispose of razor blades?
You’re in luck. Earlier this year, Procter & Gamble-owned Gillette tackled precisely this dilemma when it announced its partnership with international recycling leader TerraCycle. The Boston-headquartered razor manufacturer revealed its decision to begin recycling all brands of disposable razors, replaceable-blade cartridge units and razor plastic packaging on a national scale in an aim to fight the environmental crisis.
“We’ve partnered with TerraCycle to offer the World’s First National Razor Recycling program to help keep hard-to-recycle blades and razors from ending up in landfills. By teaming up with TerraCycle, we are making an effort to help recycle the estimated 2 billion razors thrown away every year,” it said in a statement on its official website.
“Through this innovative, first of its kind program, disposable razors, replaceable-blade cartridge units and their associated packaging are now nationally recyclable through the Gillette Recycling Program,” commented Tom Szaky, CEO and founder of TerraCycle. “We are proud to partner with this forward-thinking company to offer consumers a way to divert razor waste from landfills.”
So, how does it work?
The innovative partnership invites US consumers to recycle their razors in the following three ways:
1. Ship from home with the Gillette Razor Recycling Program
Customers looking to recycle their razors from the comfort of their homes are able to sign up on the recycling program’s page: https://www.terracycle.com/en-US/brigades/gillette. When their used razors are ready to be shipped, customers can simply download a self-funded TerraCycle tracking label, place the razors in a secure package and send it to Terracycle for recycling.
2. Become a drop-off point with the Gillette Razor Local Recycling Solutions
Companies, schools, gyms, cities and community organizations are all invited to register and serve as public drop-off points for the Gillette Razor Recycling Program. Interested parties can sign up on the program page via https://www.terracycle.com/en-US/brigades/gillette-local-recycling.
Once accepted, they will be sent an exclusive razor recycling bin developed by both TerraCycle and Gillette. When the bins are full, they can be sealed and returned to TerraCycle via UPS and a new one will be provided as soon as possible. The address provided in the participant’s account will be posted on the public map containing the locally available recycling solutions on the Gillette Razor Recycling Program website.
Participants of this program earn money for the waste that they recycle through TerraCycle’s Sponsored Waste Recycling Program. For every shipment weighing at least fifteen pounds, collectors earn points they can use to purchase charity gifts or convert to cash and donate to various charities of their choosing.
Fun fact: The used packaging will be recycled into new products, such as bike racks, park benches, pet food bowls and recycling bins.
3. Gillette On Demand Razor Recycling Program
Consumers that decide to take part in the Gillette On Demand subscription service are also invited to recycle their razors through the Gillette Razor Recycling Program. When ready to ship their used razors, they can sign up on the program page at https://www.terracycle.com/en-US/brigades/gillette-on-demand, download a self-funded TerraCycle tracking label, package the razors in a provided Gillette On Demand delivery box and send it to TerraCycle for recycling.
Don’t live in the US but looking to safely dispose of razors? Here are three tips:
1. Lengthen the life of your blade.
How, you ask? This is best done by keeping the blade dry, clean and air-tight. Oxidation is the biggest killer of razor blades. Whenever the blade’s been used, wipe it with a towel and place it inside an-airtight container right away.
2. Don’t dispose of blades individually
Instead of throwing each blade away one by one, which can prove dangerous, house the blades in a large razor disposal case and throw away the whole box when full.
3. Wrap several blades in paper
If you’re not a fan of cluttering your home with boxes but want to dispose of razors safely, then simply wrapping a couple of them in paper will do the trick. Make sure the blades are not disposed of in the recycling bin!
Regardless of your chosen method, always dispose of razor blades with care to best eliminate any risk to your children, pets, sanitation workers and yourself.
Check with your local city regarding regulations and guidelines for the disposal of razor blades.