Club Loofah

Loofah 101

It Gets Gross, Then Seriously Good

Are you a self-proclaimed loofah lover or an exfoliant enthusiast? Do you frequently fantasize about taking scandalously long, hot, lavender-infused loofah scrubbin’ showers at the end of the day? Brace yourself, bb. That lovely loofah hanging in your shower is, in fact, a downright nasty germ incubator. But, before you run screaming and treat yourself to unnecessary Target purchases, read on to learn how often you'll need to replace your precious loofah. Don't worry, we got a happy ending where loofahs still play the good guy (or girl).

When Bacteria Crashes the Party

According to Dr. J. M. Knight, a dermatology expert with the Knight Dermatology Institute in Orlando, Florida, your heaven-sent loofah is an ideal breeding spot for bacteria. When scrubbing skin squeaky clean, dead epidermal cells (Google with caution) become caught and trapped in those teeny, tiny loofah pores. In reality, your favorite buffing bar is quickly becoming a filthy nightmare. What's more, that humid shower environment your loofah lives in is the perfect place for bacteria, mold, and fungus to flourish. YAY.

Exfoliating Friend or Foe?

A (disturbing) study by the Journal of Clinical Microbiology explains how bacterial growth in loofahs happen almost instantaneously. Overnight, your innocent looking shower buddy plays host to a party. And when we say party, we mean a bacterium party! Loofahs are hosts to a nauseating assortment of bacterial species. Use this germ-filled skin scrubber right after shaving, when tiny abrasions lay open to bacterial invasion, and your skin can suffer from irritation and inflammation.

A Sickening Skin Infection Waiting To Happen

Thanks to dermatologists like the Cleveland Clinic’s Dr. M. Piliang, we now understand how the fungal organisms in dirty loofahs can cause folliculitis or impetigo, serious skin infections. How can we prevent these skin infections from happening? According to the doctor, it's pretty straightforward. Avoid skin problems by keeping your loofah as clean as possible, air-drying it outside of the humid bathroom environment, and replacing it at least every three weeks. Lastly, you'll want to ease up on those vigorous skin scrubs to minimize potential skin issues.

Loofah lovers, perk up!

If you can't envision a single shower without your loofah, New York dermatologist, Dr. Sejal Shah, suggests you replace it frequently, every three to four weeks to be exact, especially if it's a natural loofah. If that loofah ends up changing color, developing a stinky smell, or forms mold spots, throw it away at once and get yourself a new loofah. In the end, avoid the bacterial growth and risk of irritation or infection by replacing your loofah on a monthly basis. Hence, Club Loofah. We got you, bbs.