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When you’re taking a shower or bath, sure, you could apply body wash or soap and suds up with your hands. But truly, has anyone ever gotten a really good, satisfying lather this way? We think not. Enter the beauty of a good loofah, poof, or bath sponge.
Depending on the type and texture you choose, not only can it help you make the most of your soap or cleanser, that handy bath tool can also pull double duty as an effective means of exfoliation. And these days, there’s something to fit anyone and everyone’s particular preference, ranging from fluffy poofs to scrubby sponges to loofahs on a stick. The one overarching rule across the board? Make sure to replace yours regularly (any time they start to change color or smell), since a grimy loofah can be a breeding ground for bacteria…no, thank you. FYI, keeping it somewhere other than your shower—like a towel rack or a hook on the bathroom door—in between uses can help prolong its lifespan and keep germs at bay.
Ahead, the best loofahs worth adding to your stash—and to our point about replacing them regularly, might we suggest rotating among all of them?
Best Overall: Crafts of Egypt Egyptian Loofah
These Egyptian loofahs (you get a set of three) are slightly softer than other natural sponges, so you can get a thorough scrub without stressing out your skin. They’re thick and durable, and slightly larger than others, great for easy, head-to-toe cleansing, an attribute happy reviewers often point out. FYI, they come shipped flat; simply soak them in hot water for 15 minutes and they’ll puff right up.
Best Budget: Main Basics Bath Shower Loofah Sponge Pouf
This is not just one of the bestsellers in the ‘bath loofahs’ category on Amazon, but it’s also one of the most wallet-friendly options we’ve seen. You get three super-soft poofs for a bargain price. Given how often you should be replacing these, it’s a particularly great deal.
Best Detoxifying: Whale Life Pouf Ball Bamboo Charcoal
You’ve likely seen charcoal in all kinds of skincare and haircare products, thanks to its abilities to work like a magnet, attracting and absorbing all kinds of impurities. So when you really want to get squeaky clean, reach for this option. The soft poof is infused with bamboo charcoal to further help de-gunk and de-grime your skin.
Best for Back: Aquis Exfoliating Back Scrubber
Forget having someone scratch our back, we’d like to have someone wash our back. Luckily, this scrubber makes the daunting task actually possible. The rectangular-shaped pad has a loofah-esque texture on one side to help scrub off dead skin (no backne breakouts here), and a smooth, microfiber texture on the other to use afterward. Handles on either side make it easy to reach all those hard-to-reach spots. Bonus points for the fact that it’s machine washable, so you can use it for longer than other similar tools.
Best Splurge: Baudelaire Natural Wool Sea Sponge
We know, you may not want to spend too much on a loofah, but consider this the exception. Not only is there something about it that will transform even the most mundane shower into a spa-like experience, the luxuriously soft texture truly can’t be beaten. Because these come from self-regenerating ocean sponges, they’re biodegradable and sustainable, so you can feel good know you’re doing good for the ocean, too.
Best Exfoliating: Luv Scrub Mesh Body Exfoliator
Made of 100% nylon, the mesh texture on this tool is best reserved for serious sloughing, think to knock out cracked heels or super, super dry spots. The material is also stretchy, reaching up to 50 inches in length, so you can reach all over your body, and it creates a surprising amount of suds as well. Rinse it with hot water and let it air dry in between uses and one will last up to 18 months.
Best Silicone: Innerneed Soft Silicone Body Scrubber
If the idea of all the potential germs hiding in the cracks of your loofah really freaks you out, you’ll appreciate this silicone alternative. BPA-free and FDA-approved, it’s super hygienic, clean freaks rejoice. It comes in a variety of colors and two different shapes, both with helpful hand loops to hold it. Plus, with two different size bristles, it both gently exfoliates and helps stimulate circulation, too.
Best Brush: Earth Therapeutics Purest Palm Body Brush
Opting for a brush is a great option because you can use it both before (dry brushing, people) and in the shower. The bristles on this one are made of 100% Japanese palm fibers that work equally when used dry or wet. Go dry to help boost circulation and promote lymphatic drainage, then add water and body wash into the mix for a deep clean. The nine-inch size is also big enough to cover your entire body, without taking up too much real estate in your bathroom or shower.
Best for Men: Spongelle Men’s Super Buffer
Not only is the texture perfect for men’s thicker skin, but it also has a body wash built-in. One will last for 20+ uses, making it ideal to keep in your gym bag or Dopp kit. Not to mention that the body wash smells amazing, a perfect mix of citrus and spice.