In a world of single-use plastic, there are also so many other plastic products we use daily, whether we use them once or for years. For me, one of these kinds of products is the dreaded loofah. For almost my entire life, I’ve had a neon-colored loofah hanging in my shower, ready for me to scrub with. But recently, I’ve become hyper-aware of not only the environmental impact they have but also how gross they are and how much bacteria they can spread. Join this journey with me and take a look at some really awesome and viable loofah alternatives that are not only made in more eco-friendly ways but are actually better for you!
Why Loofahs Suck
Unbeknownst to me, loofahs not only hold in the dead skin and particles you leave in it but they also grow bacteria from it. As explained by Esther Angert, Ph.D., associate professor in the department of microbiology at Cornell University, in a HuffPost article, “Your loofah scrubs dead skin cells off of your body, which gets caught in all of the nooks and crannies of the fibrous matrix of the loofah.” After that, bacteria cultivates and grows, especially because of the moist and humid shower location. Then, when you go to use your loofah again, it’s all right there waiting for you. Yuck. When I first heard about this, I immediately went to throw my loofah out. Honestly, who knows how long my loofah had been hanging there and how much bacteria was inside it? Even beyond that, loofahs are also packed with dyes, preservatives, and chemicals that aren’t great for your skin.
Unlike a plastic loofah, natural sea sponges don’t have any artificial preservatives, chemicals or dyes. They do the same job, but even better than a plastic loofah. They also have naturally occurring enzymes that kill bacteria, instead of culminating them. They’re also better at exfoliating than a typical plastic loofah, according to the five-star reviews on Amazon. This is basically a natural, and more awesome loofah.
This is one of my favorite alternatives because it doesn’t have a bunch of knicks and crannies for bacteria to get stuck in. To me, this also seems like the most sanitary option. I like when they’re really long so you can exfoliate skin in places that are difficult to reach, like your back. I’ve had one of these for a while and it inspired me to write this article because I think people should use these way more often.
Once again, the whole point is to exfoliate and clean your body, right? There’s no better way to exfoliate and scrub a dub than with a body brush. This one from Eco Tools is perfect to use inside or outside of the shower to exfoliate your skin. Overall, this brand has so many other great tools for the shower, so if this one isn’t your style, I’m sure there are a ton of others that can help you out. Basically, the goal here is to find a tool that is better for the environment and for you, all at once.
I’m not exactly sure how I feel about exfoliating gloves, but they are an option that’s out there. These ones are made of bamboo, which is eco-friendly and works to detox and deep cleanse the skin. These might feel a little weird in the shower, but I’d still be interested in testing them out.
Do you have any other loofah alternatives in mind? Let us know what you prefer to use in the shower in the comment section below!