Looking After Your Natural Sea Sponge
As well as creating engineered foam products, an important branch of our business reaches out across Europe to the Mediterranean. It’s not to another facility or the foam engineering department of a sister company, but to the rich, deep waters of the Mediterranean Sea.
Natural sponges are technically animals, but they have no organs, nervous system, circulatory system or digestive system. They are made of porous cells that allow water to move freely through their bodies, which is how they take in food, regulate their body temperature and remove waste from their bodies.
Natural sponge species and sub-species include things you will have already seen in your bathroom – the soft wool baby sponge, the loofah and the honeycomb sponge. Each enjoys its own unique properties that make it perfect for applications like skin exfoliation, gentle cleansing, ultra-sensitive skin, etc.
Harvesting Natural Sponge Foam
We believe in ethical harvesting, which means we only use local divers and always leave the root of the sponge intact so it can re-grow healthily. But here’s an interesting fact – it’s not only humans who harvest sea sponges. In 1997, marine biologists in Western Australia noticed some curious behaviour only found in Shark Bay dolphin groups. Female dolphins will harvest a single sea sponge and hold it over its beak as it digs for food on the sea bed. It’s assumed the dolphin is using the soft natural sponge for protection.
Dos and Don’ts of Taking Care of Your Sea Sponge (and Other Natural Products)
Your natural sponge isn’t engineered by our experts, but it is exceptionally long-lasting when treated properly.
- DO rinse your natural sponge under clean water after every use and gently squeeze excess water out.
- DO use a towel to absorb excess water – never twist or wring the sponge.
- DO dry your sponge away from direct heat, preferably on a drying wrack or in an airing cupboard.
- DO cleanse your sponge by leaving it to soak in a solution of 1tbsp baking soda per cup of warm water.
- DON’T soak the sponge in chemicals – it will damage the natural integrity of the sponge.
- DON’T put your sponge in the washing machine.
Although natural sponges are very resilient, especially to abrasion, it’s essential to treat your sponge delicately if you want to maximise its life in your bathroom. And the same goes for most other natural beauty tools. Always use gentle cleansing methods, allow products to dry gently and naturally, and handle with care at all times.
If you’d like to learn more about our ethical harvesting methods and what’s involved in sponge import in the UK, our retail sales director, David Hart, is the UK’s leading expert on all things sea sponge! David is really passionate about how we manage our sponge trade in the UK, and is very proud of all the steps we take to ensure our business remains ethical and beneficial to both local Mediterranean communities and the brilliant little sponges themselves!