Which bath sponge is best?
Whether you prefer baths or showers, a good bath sponge can vastly improve the experience. Not only do bath sponges help conserve body wash, many of them also have exfoliative properties. Choosing the best bath sponge comes down to personal preference and how you intend to use it. If you’re looking for an eco-friendly and natural bath sponge that will transform your bathing routine into one of luxury, check out the Natural Sea Wool Sponge by Spa Destinations.
What to know before you buy a bath sponge
Type of sponge
There’s a wide variety of organic and synthetic bath sponges available, so there’s something for everyone.
One popular type of bath sponge is the loofah. The loofah comes from the Luffa gourd, a tropical plant that resembles a giant cucumber and can be harvested when it’s between three and four months old. Once harvested, the plant is dried, sliced and shaped into loofah sponges. Loofahs come in many shapes, ranging from poofy balls to cylindrical tubes.
Although some loofahs are organic, many of the ones found in stores today consist of synthetic materials like plastic. This type of sponge is not biodegradable, making it bad for the environment. Additionally, plastic loofahs attract bacteria and retain dead skin cells and dried remnants of soap and body wash.
Along with plastic and natural loofahs, there are actual sponges made from prime sea wool, rock island sea wool and other types of sea wool. Depending on the source, each bath sponge will have a different feel, shape and size. These sponges are generally considered better for the environment, and they are soft and gentle to use.
Other types of bath sponges include charcoal-infused sponges and Konjac sponges. These sponges offer a wide range of other benefits. Many are eco-friendly and can remove oils and dirt more easily than other options.
Cleaning and maintenance
Cleaning a natural sea sponge or loofah is fairly simple and should be done at least once a month. To clean the bath sponge, soak it in a cup of warm water with a tablespoon of baking soda. After a few minutes, rinse the sponge and let it air dry completely.
If you’re worried about bacteria growth, simply disinfect the bath sponge by letting it soak in hot water. Add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and a few drops of tea tree essential oil. Apple cider vinegar has antimicrobial properties that will help disinfect the sponge, while tea tree oil enhances the vinegar’s ability to fight mold and bacteria growth.
Although some people suggest boiling the sponge to kill any bacteria, doing so can permanently alter the shape of the bath sponge, which may make it unusable, or it could cause the sponge to harden.
Additionally, don’t use bleach, chlorine or a similar chemical to clean an organic sea sponge since this can cause it to deteriorate. If you have a synthetic loofah, create a heavily diluted solution that’s 1/4 cup of bleach and one gallon of water. Soak the sponge in the solution for five minutes. Then, rinse it thoroughly before using it again.
Health and safety
Synthetic loofahs and some natural loofahs may come with a few health risks or safety concerns. One of the biggest things to watch out for is the sponge’s abrasive nature. People with highly sensitive skin can easily scratch or wear down their skin if they use an abrasive sponge, especially if they use it vigorously.
For synthetic loofahs, repeated use could cause dead skin cells, soap grime and other debris to get stuck inside the material’s weave. This may cause bacteria to grow, which could ultimately lead to infection with continued use. That’s why it’s important to clean or switch out your bath sponge regularly.
A great alternative for a synthetic loofah is a natural sponge. These bath sponges have an enzyme that makes them naturally antibacterial. Additionally, they are eco-friendly and biodegradable.
What to look for in a quality bath sponge
Some bath sponges have a rough texture, while others have a smooth texture. For synthetic loofahs, the feel depends on the weave. For natural sea sponges, it depends on the type.
Examples of soft, natural sea sponges are:
- Prime Sea Wool
- Rock Island Sea Wool
- South Pacific Silk
Some popular natural sea sponges with a rougher texture are:
- Caribbean Grass
- Yellow Sponges
When the sponge is wet, it should become softer than it was when dry, so keep this in mind. Additionally, repeated use of the sponge may cause it to soften up. Rougher sponges are better for those with normal skin, while softer ones are better for those with more sensitive skin.
Ultimately, the sponge you choose comes down to both personal preference and how much exfoliation you want it to have.
Most bath sponges have exfoliative properties, but some are better at exfoliating the skin than others. Tough sponges are useful when it comes to unclogging pores since they can remove dead skin cells and any lingering dirt.
Organic sea sponges vary in texture and exfoliation, but those that come from the Luffa plant are slightly scratchy. This makes them a great natural exfoliator.
To exfoliate your skin with a bath sponge, move it around in a circular motion while applying light to medium pressure. Add a dab of exfoliating body wash to the sponge to help clear your pores and get rid of dead cells.
Longevity and durability
Although the plastic of synthetic sponges is quite durable, these sponges are more prone to bacteria growth. This, in turn, limits their lifespan. Besides, even plastic starts to degrade over time. Most synthetic sponges only last a month or two with daily use.
Organic sea sponges, on the other hand, can last for several months. Their ends may become frayed, but you can easily fix this by trimming off those parts every so often. With proper cleaning and by letting the sponge fully dry in between baths or showers, you’ll be able to extend the sponge’s longevity. If you choose not to clean a bath sponge or loofah, replace it every three or four weeks to prevent bacteria growth.
How much you can expect to spend on a bath sponge
Synthetic loofahs cost anywhere from $1-$15, depending on the size and quality. Natural loofahs and sea sponges usually cost around $10-$20.
Bath sponge FAQ
Why should I use a bath sponge?
A. Bath sponges have many benefits, such as preventing the waste of body wash and helping exfoliate the skin.
What’s the best bath sponge for children?
A. Most bath sponges are suitable for children. However, if the child is very young, it’s best to have an adult present to monitor the child or help them use the sponge. Some kids may try to chew on sea sponges, which could be dangerous to their health, especially if they’re synthetic. Besides this, choose a soft bath sponge that’s safe for the child’s more sensitive skin.
Are natural sea sponges sustainable?
A. Not only are they natural and biodegradable, but organic sea sponges are also sustainable. After the sponges are harvested, they start to slowly regrow on their own. This occurs over a three to five-year period, which makes them eco-friendly.
What’s the best bath sponge to buy?
Top bath sponge
What you need to know: This all-natural sea wool sponge is soft, bacteria-resistant and can last for a couple of months with proper care and maintenance.
What you’ll love: Although it’s extremely soft, this sponge lightly exfoliates the skin and absorbs body wash well for luxury bathing. It can also lather up quickly and retain water during use.
What you should consider: The sponge is on the smaller side.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top bath sponge for the money
What you need to know: This highly absorbent, natural sea sponge is ideal for babies, young children and adults who want something extra-soft for sensitive skin.
What you’ll love: This small sponge is durable, holds a good amount of soap and is easily rinsed. Harvested and imported from Greece, this traditional sponge is several inches long and great for spot cleaning. It also doubles as a dish sponge.
What you should consider: Some people may prefer a larger sponge.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This loofah sponge is ideal for those who want something natural to exfoliate their skin while bathing.
What you’ll love: Each loofah is durable with a semi-rough texture that allows it to unclog pores and remove debris and grime. Its shape and size are convenient for most users. Plus, the fact that it comes in a pack makes it easy to replace them every few weeks or so without having to purchase new ones.
What you should consider: These loofahs may be too rough for those with sensitive skin.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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