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Are loofahs bad?

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11.21.22

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are loofahs bad?

How do you shower? Do you use a washcloth? Scrub with your hands like a caveman? Some other inventive measure?

If you’re like a lot of people, you might use a loofah to help scrub your body with soap. If that’s the case, then we need to have a little chat.

No, we’re not doing that modern thing where we take something you love and completely ruin it. Instead, we’re going to offer an alternative to loofahs and explain why we think this alternative is a genuine upgrade. 

Are loofahs bad? Not really.

Are they perfect? Definitely not.

Let’s take the time to really dive into this topic and see what we can learn together.

Loofahs have their good points

A lot of people use loofahs. Like, a lot, a lot. And, they have good reasons for that.

Loofahs are a staple in many showers because they’re easy to use, feel good, and help you get clean. We’re going to get deeper into those details in a bit, but the short answer is that a loofah can improve your shower experience.

A little later, we’ll talk about how you can upgrade that experience beyond what a loofah can offer, but the simple fact is that a loofah is better than a lot of other options.

man using loofah

They can exfoliate

The first reason anyone ever goes out to get a loofah is that they learn of exfoliation. Loofahs are supposed to be soft, gentle agitators that help you remove dead skin, clear pores, and reap the benefits.

That’s all true. They are one of the gentler exfoliators out there, and using a loofah in the shower often feels good on the skin. It’s why most people who get a loofah don’t immediately get rid of it. They like the thing, and that’s worth something.

They are gentle and help with cleaning

Despite the fact that loofahs are agitators and exfoliators, they are fairly gentle. You can use them on a daily basis, and they won’t leave your skin red and irritated. That’s pretty nice.

Also, you’ll find that they seem to replace a washcloth in your shower quite well. They help you scrub your body without being too rough. Every time you use one, you feel like you get nice and clean.

They are usually cheap and easy to maintain

Loofahs aren’t terribly expensive, and they have some of the easiest maintenance out there. Rinse them thoroughly before and after each use. Let your body soap clean them. Replace them when they get a little worn. 

Oh yeah, and hang them when you’re done.

That’s really the whole list of things you need to do with a loofah. It sounds pretty good, right?

Loofahs have drawbacks, too

The problem is that those good things about loofah don’t really tell the whole story. While loofahs do have benefits, and it’s fine if you use one, it helps to know the whole story. Not only do loofahs have drawbacks, each of the benefits we just listed is a bit overhyped.

We’re not trying to pick on loofahs. It’s just that a lot of people don’t seem to have a deep understanding of what loofahs are doing and why the trade-offs in their design matter.

1. They are not as exfoliating as you might think

Loofahs provide a gentle, enjoyable massaging feeling when you shower.

The thing is, exfoliation isn’t supposed to be overly gentle. Chemical exfoliants often leave you with a tingling feeling when you’re done because that’s what it takes to fully clear pores.

Physical exfoliants don’t need to leave you with red or irritated skin, but they tend to provide a deeper clean than what you’ll get from a loofah.

This leads to two issues. First, when you use a loofah, you’re not really getting a full exfoliation. Second, you’re showering all the time with your loofah, and that isn’t right either. According to dermatologists, you should exfoliate two to three times a week. But if you primarily use a physical exfoliator, you might want to only do it once a week.

A deep exfoliation is something you won’t get from a loofah, and because of that, you won’t get the full benefits of a deep exfoliation, which include clearer, brighter, more even-toned skin. Again, we’re not picking on loofahs. The slight exfoliation you get from them is better than nothing, but it’s not the best experience you can find either.

2. They are bacteria hotspots

Remember when we said that loofahs have easy maintenance? Unfortunately, that was a half-truth. Typically, loofah care will tell you to rinse it before and after use and hang it so that it will dry between showers.

The bad news is that even if you do that, and even if you douse your loofah in soap every time, it’s still going to grow bacteria (and possibly fungi, too). The simple fact is that loofahs are very porous and hold water. That’s the perfect combination for growing microbes.

Something that is truly low maintenance is something that won’t retain water at all, doesn’t have any pores, and easily dries completely after a shower. There are things that do this, but they don’t include loofahs.

3. They require frequent replacement

Because of microbial growth, the best way to use a loofah is to rotate it all the way out of your shower. You want to have a few that rotate so that they can dry completely between uses.

Even if you do this, once the loofah starts to smell at all, it’s time to toss it and replace it. Cleaning a loofah won’t ever really work because of its design. You might get rid of some of the microbes, but you’re just going to grow more.

That means that proper loofah maintenance requires more frequent replacement than a lot of people realize.

Try this instead

man using the body buffer

If you love your loofah, that’s fine. You can use it and enjoy it. Please just keep our points about microbes in mind. It can help a lot with general health and skin health.

If you’re not completely sold on loofahs, there's better technology. You can get a physical exfoliator that massages better than a loofah and actually doesn’t require daily use. You can exfoliate more like dermatologists recommend.

And, of course, MANSCAPED™ has just the thing for you. The Body Buffer is an exfoliator designed to make your life simpler and your skin healthier. Spare us a minute or two to explain why it’s so good.

It’s antibacterial

The Body Buffer is made entirely out of food-grade silicone. This is a material with absolutely no pores, so it can’t retain water at all, and it dries very easily after use. This is the same material that is taking over kitchens everywhere because it is so resistant to microbial growth.


Silicone is practically a wonder material. It’s durable. It’s clean. It’s gentle to the touch. You’ll find that silicone, while protecting you from microbial growth, is doing a lot of other good things for you at the same time.

And long-lasting

For instance, silicone is a very durable material that lasts a long time. Since The Body Buffer isn’t constantly growing microbes, you actually can clean it (and a simple rinse is usually sufficient). The silicone itself will not wear out quickly, and you’ll find that your Buffer lasts a lot longer than any loofah.

Even when you aren’t replacing a loofah as often as you should, it doesn’t come close to the Buffer in longevity. Silicone is just that effective.

Providing quality exfoliation

Silicone is a soft but strong material. That allows it to provide proper exfoliation in the shower. A silicone exfoliator will deeply clean your pores, and using The Body Buffer will actually feel like you’re giving your skin a deep massage.

It feels fantastic. You’ll recognize that the first time you use it.

At the same time, it's better for your skin, and because it’s exfoliating better, you don’t need to use it every day. You could, but you don’t have to. The silicone will be safe living in your shower between uses (we provided a hanger in the design to keep it out of pooling water). Overall, it’s just a better way to exfoliate your skin.

And part of a complete skincare regimen

man using MANSCAPED Hydrating Body Spray

The very best thing about The Body Buffer is that it’s part of the MANSCAPED™ lineup. We make a full suite of products, and they’re designed to work together.

When you exfoliate in the shower, you can use our Ultra Premium™ Body Wash. It will ensure that you get properly cleaned in the process. It is also infused with nutrients that are good for your skin, and it’s hydrating to mitigate any irritation that might come with exfoliation (although silicone also helps prevent irritation).

After your shower, you can use our Hydrating Body Spray. It finishes the work started by the body wash. The body spray keeps your skin hydrated and smelling great throughout the day.

When you take full advantage of the MANSCAPED™ lineup, you’ll have the great-skin-and-hair game on lock.

11.21.22

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