Should You Add Sea Sponges To Your Zero Waste Bathroom?

Lather, rinse, repeat 🛁

Explore in this Article

  1. What are sea sponges?
  2. How are sea sponges harvested?
  3. Are sea sponges vegan or cruelty-free?
  4. Are sea sponges ethical or sustainable?

Even if sustainability is the new black, it can be a bit daunting. It seems like a complex and confusing topic, which can be difficult to wrap your head around. So what’s new in the sustainable lifestyle world? For today, it’s sea sponges, the newest addition to your zero waste bathroom essentials. Natural sea sponges have become quite popular as a sustainable alternative to synthetic loofahs and are used as naturally antibacterial, exfoliating, and sustainable sea sponges. If you haven’t heard about them, well, first get on TikTok, or keep reading!

What are sea sponges?

sea sponges
James Lee/ Pexels

Firstly, let’s understand what really sea sponges are. Sea sponges are animals, like sea-riously! Simple, multicellular animals (not plants just because they don’t have any organs), sea sponges spend their adult lives connected to the seabed or growing on coral, which is also a living breathing species altogether.
Natural sea sponges also contain natural bacteria-fighting enzymes that allow them to last for years; since they have no other additives, they’re also good for sensitive skin.

sea sponges on coral reefs Instagram

How are sea sponges harvested?

Fishing boats specializing in sponge fishing capture sea sponges from the ocean’s bed. Divers gather these natural sponges with specially adapted cutting hooks or knives. The divers leave enough of the sponge’s base for it to regenerate swiftly, which makes sea sponge harvesting pretty sustainable.

Feri & Tasos/ Unsplash

After cutting the sponge, the divers carefully squeeze the gurry out and take them to the boats. When divers return to the boat with the sea sponges, they clean them and cover them with burlap sacks on the ship’s deck, where the heat of the sun emits a gas that rots the sponges’ skins, allowing them to be easily removed.

Are sea sponges vegan or cruelty-free?

By the definition of vegan, sea sponges are not really vegan, since they are animals! Those who are committed to avoiding animal by-products may want to avoid sea sponges.

These natural sponges are simple multi-celled organisms, so harvesting or cultivating them is cruelty-free. There is no nervous system, circulatory system, or organs in them. But if the question is, are natural sea sponges ethical or sustainable? Then let’s deep dive into that as well.

Are sea sponges ethical or sustainable?

First of all, sea sponges are 100% natural. That means you can compost these natural sponges. So it is safe to say that you can use sea sponges for bathing or put them in your zero-waste kitchen, only if there are harvested or farmed sustainably.

woman holding sea sponges
Meruyert Gonullu/ Pexels

Sea sponges are an important part of our oceans. They filter water and keep reefs clean. According to an article published by European Commission, “every day, a sea sponge can filter between two and 20 cubic metres of water per kilogram of bodyweight, and researchers are studying the possibility of using them on an industrial scale in a process known as bioremediation – where organisms are used to remove pollutants.”

So, if you want to feel good about using these natural sea sponges for bathing, you might want to use sustainable sea sponges like Captain Blankenship’s Sea Sponge.

Meruyert Gonullu/ Pexels

Another great option of natural sea sponge for bathing is Nash and Jone’s Silk Sea Sponge.

So get ready to nourish and buff your skin with sustainable sea sponges.

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