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Four Reasons to Consider Cremation Without Embalming


Do you have to be embalmed to be cremated?

The short answer is "no," cremations can happen without any form of embalming. Right now, there are excellent alternatives to embalming that have many advantages.

People are choosing other options both for themselves and for their loved ones. Cremation without embalming, in particular, is gaining ground as more and more people become aware of its benefits.

The benefits of cremation without embalming

Better known as direct cremation, cremation without embalming has a number of advantages over traditional burial and even traditional cremation (which includes embalming and a ceremony prior to the cremation itself).

#1: It’s environmentally friendlier.

While embalming practices have become safer over the years, there are still major environmental risks involved. This is due to the harmful chemicals used to embalm a human body, which include methanol, phenol, glutaraldehyde, paraformaldehyde, and formaldehyde. Flammable, corrosive, and highly toxic, these chemicals aren’t just a danger to the morticians who work with them on a daily basis. Following burial, they can also leach into the surrounding earth and even nearby waterways, posing a threat to both local flora and fauna alike.

Direct cremation, on the other hand, is environmentally friendlier in that it doesn’t require the use of any of these chemicals. Direct cremation takes place so soon enough after death that preservation methods like embalming simply aren’t necessary. This means that, regardless of whether your loved one’s ashes will be scattered, buried, or kept at home, there’s no risk from hazardous embalming materials.

#2: It’s less invasive.

For some, embalming is an attractive option because it appears to keep a loved one’s remains intact after death. When the process is complete, it’s easy to imagine that they’ve simply been peacefully asleep the whole time.

However, embalming is actually an invasive procedure not unlike surgery. Bodily fluids are removed, and eyes and mouths must be artificially shut. With direct cremation, a minimally invasive procedure may be required in order to remove medical devices like pacemakers, but otherwise, no surgical tools are necessary to prepare a body for direct cremation. Instead, once all jewelry and other materials are removed, a body will be placed directly into a cremation container and then enter the cremation chamber, the contents of which will be gently broken down into ash.

#3: It’s more affordable.

For many families, the question of direct cremation versus more traditional options may come down to what they can reasonably afford. Both traditional burial and cremation services that include embalming tend to cost, on average, $6,000 to $7,000. Even a direct burial, with no embalming, will typically cost around $3,000.

In contrast, most direct cremation services cost $2,000 or less, with a select few providers offering prices as low as $650. This is because of how straightforward the process is when compared with other services. No embalming tools or chemicals are needed, nor is a fancy casket or any of the usual “upgrades” offered by many traditional funeral homes. Instead, you pay only for what’s necessary in the cremation process. You are then free to arrange a memorial service that best fits both your loved one’s memory and your family’s budget.

#4: It’s more straightforward.

The time following a loss can be challenging to navigate. While coping with grief, you must also somehow find the focus necessary to make phone calls, fill out paperwork, and arrange a fitting sendoff for your loved one. It can be a lot to take in, making it difficult to sort through a wide selection of funeral homes and cremation providers to find the one that’s right for your loved one. The fact that many funeral providers take advantage of this confusion to upsell their clients on unnecessary expenses and tack hidden fees onto their bills only makes things that much harder.

Direct cremation services, in comparison, tend to be much simpler both to understand and arrange. A good provider will list their prices upfront and have their General Price List readily available so that you’ll know exactly how much their service will cost. Likewise, their offerings should be simple and straightforward. You shouldn’t have to sift through dizzying amounts of funeral package templates or steel yourself against a sales pitch on upscale caskets or urns. While a few extra features, such as engraved urns or a hand-delivery service may be available, most direct cremation services include just the basics: transportation, preparation, a dignified private cremation, and the return of your loved one’s ashes to you.

How to arrange direct cremation without embalming

If you’re ready to begin arranging your loved one’s cremation without embalming, you won’t even need to grab your car keys or pull on a pair of shoes. When making direct arrangements with Tulip Cremation, you can do it all right from the comfort of your own home.

Simply call our Family Care Team or visit our online portal to begin. It typically takes no more than fifteen minutes to settle arrangements—it’s that simple. Our Care Team is available to talk 24 hours a day, seven days a week, whether you’re ready to get started or just need something clarified about our service. We’ll be happy to walk you through our process, and once your loved one is in our care, we will send you regular periodic updates to keep your mind at ease. We’ll even take care of some of the paperwork for you, including reporting your loved one’s death and acquiring as many certified copies of their death certificate as you may require.

Whenever you need us, we’ll be here to help you navigate this difficult time and make the hard parts a little easier to bear. All you need to do is call or contact us online to get started.

Tulip Cremation offers a simple and dignified direct cremation service that’s low-cost and easy to arrange. Our service includes collection of your loved one from their place of passing, preparation and cremation, as well as return shipping of your loved one’s ashes to any postal address in the U.S. You can visit our website whenever you like to arrange online or call us anytime at (844) 942-4909.