You might be thinking what in the world is a konjac cleansing sponge? For a while I wasn’t sure how to pronounce it. Is it Konjack or Konyack? It’s actually pronounced liked Cognac. So now that we have that out of the way let’s talk about this small but mighty beauty tool. The konjac cleansing sponge was actually made popular a few years ago and it’s still going pretty strong, especially in the green beauty world. So let’s get back to your original question.
What is a Konjac Cleansing Sponge?
I know some cringe at the sound of a sponge as we’ve all been programmed to know that sponges are cesspools for bacteria. Luckily, this sponge isn’t actually a sponge at all. Konjac is a root similar to a potato-like plant that is native to Asia. The Japanese have used this Konjac plant as part of their beauty treatments for years. The actual “sponge” is made from the vegetable/potato fiber of the plant. It’s earth friendly and biodegradable. How can you not love that?! The natural porous nature of the plant makes it a great cleansing tool for the face and body.
What does it do?
I love body brushing because it increases circulation, promotes lymphatic drainage, and naturally exfoliates. However, rubbing a body brush on my face would be detrimental and quite painful. For me, this little sponge is my body brush for the face. It’s main purpose is to cleanse and exfoliate the skin. It's fibrous material is naturally alkaline with a neutral PH so it won't upset the balance of your skin. The texture is the perfect alternative to your washcloth and if you've tried those Clarisonic cleansing tools but found them too abrasive even with the gentle brushead, then this konjac sponge is for you. It has natural cleansing properties which means you don’t need to use any type of face wash with it. They are super gentle on the skin and the naturally porous texture makes them great options for daily exfoliating. In turn, they help to reveal better looking skin and who doesn’t want that?
How Do You Use It?
When you first get your sponge, it will be dry and hard. So you will need to hydrate it under warm water until it’s completely soaked through and soft (about 5-10 minutes). After the initial soak, you’ll only need to soak it for about a minute before it absorbs. You’ll also notice that once it’s hydrated it will expand and puff up. Apply a small amount of your cleanser, although it’s not required, and massage your face in upward circular motions with the sponge. It’s gentle and natural exfoliation will invigorate the skin and help to shed dead layers to promote skin renewal. There’s no need to scrub hard, the sponge will do the work. Pretty simple, right?
Once you are finished with your sponge, rinse it out and gently squeeze out the excess water. However, don’t ring or twist it out like a soaked towel. This will cause the fibers to detorioate more quickly. Just gently press the sponge between your fingers to release any excess water. If yours has a string attached, hang it to air-dry or lay it on a rack. You'll want to replace it about every 6 weeks or so depending on how often you use it.
You can find these sponges almost anywhere these days from Ulta, Sephora, and Walgreens and their price-point is really reasonable for a workhorse of a beauty tool like this. You can find them as low as $5 up to $15. I like to use the heart-shaped one from One Love Organics. It's the first one I tried and keep going back to it. You might notice that these sponges also come in a variety of colors. These colors actually mean something and equate to active ingredients that have been added to the sponge. Gray contains charcoal, green contains green tea, red contains clay, and white does not contain anything. Just make sure when you're buying one that you do get one that is made from 100% pure konjac and doesn't have any other filler material. Otherwise, you'll lose the natural benefits and gentleness of this tool.
I don’t necessarily have sensitive skin but even for me the Clarisonic style tools were too rough. I love how gentle this feels and that I can use it every day. I like to use it at night as the second step of my two-part cleansing method. When I wear make-up, I first like to wash it all off using Philosophy Purity Made Simple cleanser then I use my One Love Organics Easy Does It face wash or my True Botanicals cleanser (which ever I have on hand), apply a little amount to the sponge and massage my wash. I feel this does a good job of getting rid of any buildup or residue off my face.