Loofahs have become the favorite bath accessory for many of us. Why wouldn’t they? They help clean and exfoliate your skin so smoothly and evenly and are so gentle on the body.
However, as effective and useful as they are, loofahs need to be taken care of properly. If you notice them carefully, you will see that these sponges are porous and have plenty of nooks and crannies. These tiny spaces are capable of breeding bacteria that could be harmful to you and can also damage your skin. This happens because we use a loofah to scrub off dead skin cells and over time these dead cells become stuck inside the little pores of the loofah, allowing bacteria to grow.
Moreover, if they are not washed thoroughly, loofahs may also breed fungal organisms that can lead to skin infections
Thus, if you are someone who can’t do without a loofah, you must know how to clean it properly and when to discard it. Here are some useful tips that will help you care for your loofah properly.
1. How long should you use a loofah?
Whether you are using a natural loofah or a synthetic one, it should be replaced from time to time. Skin experts say that a natural loofah should be replaced every three to four weeks. The synthetic ones can last for two months if they are cleaned routinely. Be sure not to use it any longer than the advised period.
Of course, if you notice any mold growing on your loofah, then you should immediately replace it. Furthermore, if a loofah has developed a mildewy or musty odor, then it’s a sign that it has become infested with bacteria and needs to be discarded.
2. Dry it daily
One of the best ways to ensure that your loofah remains safe and healthy for use is to make sure you dry it daily. Once you are done using it, just rinse the loofah thoroughly with water so that all the soapy residue is removed from its surface. Then, shake it thoroughly and hang it out to dry. A place where the loofah can get plenty of sunshine would be ideal, but if this is not a viable option then simply hang it to dry in a cool dry place. Just don’t keep it in your bathroom as it's already a damp environment, which is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
3. Don’t use it on your face
As soft and exfoliating a loofah is, it shouldn’t be used on your face. According to dermatologists should avoid rubbing our face with a loofah as they are abrasive and may damage the soft skin. Using a loofah continually on your face can lead to irritation of the skin and even cause scars. Moreover, as we mentioned earlier, loofahs are hotbeds for bacteria, and won’t really work as a facial cleansing accessory.
You would also be better off avoiding using your loofah for a couple of days after you have shaved your legs, as bacteria can easily penetrate the skin through any little cut. This makes it all the more dangerous to use for people who shave their faces frequently.
4. How to clean a loofah
You must sanitize your loofah every week to ensure that no harmful bacteria can breed in it. There are many ways to disinfect a loofah. Let’s take a look at a few of the most effective ones.
* Soak the loofah in a diluted bleach solution for 5-10 minutes and then rinse it thoroughly with cold water.
* You can also use natural essential oils to disinfect your loofah since they have antimicrobial properties that inhibit the growth of bacteria. Soak the loofah in a bowl of warm water and add a few drops of essential oils to it. Rinse it properly after 5-10 minutes and leave it to dry.
* Other solutions that you can use to sanitize your loofah safely include apple cider, white vinegar, baking soda, and colloidal silver. The cleaning process will be the same as the one mentioned for using natural essential oils.
Tip: To properly get rid of the moisture from the loofah after you’ve washed it, use a dry towel to thoroughly wring it.
Please share these tips with others who might find them useful...