How to Exfoliate with a Loofah

Using a loofah is one of the best things you can do for your skin.  It’s a great way to exfoliate your entire body, and you can do it quickly and daily in the shower.

Natural loofah sponges are very rough, so they make an ideal exfoliation treatment.  Today, they are readily available and very affordable.  In the past however, loofahs were a bit of a beauty secret of the rich.  The loofah is actually a gourd found in Asia and Africa, so they weren’t common in the west and could be expensive.

The best way to use a loofah is in a warm shower, in place of a regular rag or sponge.  You should let your skin become super hydrated from the water to get the best results.  If you’ve ever toweled dry after your shower and had a lot of dead skin start coming off, that is the ideal state for exfoliating in the shower.  Try to begin after your skin has been in the shower for at least 5 minutes.  You’ll need less pressure and will avoid scratching the skin this way.  If you use a lactic or glycolic acid body lotion, it is even easier.  In fact if you are using products that contain alpha hydroxy acids, a loofah can help remove the dead skin cells that are loosened, but can remain on the skin.

When using a loofah, pay extra attention to your roughest areas that develop hard, thick, or rough skin patches.  The elbows, knees, and the backs of the thighs and arms are the most common areas.  Use circular motions and moderate pressure.  Don’t go as fast as you would if you are just cleansing with a sponge.  You can use with soap or shower gel or without.  Sometimes soap can dry your skin, so try to use something gentle or follow up with a moisturizer.  Loofah soaps actually contain whole loofa chunks embedded in a soap bar, or ground up loofah for exfoliation.

A back loofah or a loofah strap is convenient if you are trying to exfoliate your back.  These loofahs are long and usually attached to a terry cloth strap with handles or a wooden handle, so you can exfoliate your back thoroughly by yourself.

A facial loofah is usually a small circle cut out of a larger loofah.  Then tend you be a bit softer than body loofah, and have a front and back.  The front is from the outside of the loofah and the back is from the inside.  Sometimes the backs can be very rough and can really scratch, so be sure to use the correct side.  Like with you body, try to allow the facial skin to become hydrated, either in the shower, or by using a face steamer.

Let your loofahs dry out after each use, and don’t store them in the shower.  Eventually, they tend to loose their scrubbiness and become less effective.  Because they are so affordable you can replace them often.  If your loofah develops a mildew or mold smell but still has some life in it, you can clean it by soaking it in peroxide or a solution of baking soda and vinegar.  Rinse the loofah sponge very well after cleaning.  When stored correctly, they have a very long shelf like, so consider picking up a bunch of wholesale loofas to save even more money.  When you exfoliate, you can sometimes leave small scratches on the skin.  Make sure your loofah is clean, so you don’t add any mold or bacteria to your fresh vulnerable skin.

A loofah is actually an edible vegetable.  Because it is a plant, there are variations in the quality and texture of loofahs.  They can very from brand to brand, or even year to year with the same brand because of different harvests.  Other common spellings include Loofa, Luffa, and Lufah, but they are all the same thing.

Hopefully you’ll now be able to get the most out of exfoliating with a loofah.  Remember to keep them clean and dry and follow up with a moisturizer, as exfoliating of all types can dry out the skin.

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