The bizarre tool you need to add to your skin care routine
We guarantee you won’t have heard of this before
By Kate Niven
Beauty Crew Beauty Writer / May 11 2018
While cleansing brushes have revolutionised the way we cleanse our skin in recent years – yes Clarisonic, we’re looking at you – there’s now a different and slightly bizarre tool that might just knock these high-tech options off their perch.
If you’re more than a little intrigued about this squishy sponge, read on to discover how the peculiar cleansing tool is set to transform your skin.
What is a konjac sponge?
Made from the konjac plant (a porous root vegetable that grows in Asia), these bouncy sponges can be used in place of a cleansing brush or washcloth to rid skin of everything from dirt and oil to blackheads.
Konjac sponges also “gently massage the skin and work to help stimulate blood flow and the growth of new, healthy skin cells, leaving the complexion extremely clean and refreshed,” explains Sephora National Artistry Lead, Alphie Sadsad,
The supposed benefits
“Using soaps and other washes with a high pH level can wreak havoc on the acid mantle of your skin and cause all sorts of imbalances. By incorporating a charcoal-infused konjac sponge into your routine, the pH of the skin is effectively balanced (as the plant is naturally alkaline), your skin is gently exfoliated, excess oil is removed and hard-to-kill acne-causing bacteria is fought off,” explains Mukti, founder and Artisan Alchemist for Mukti Organics.
In addition to charcoal, konjac sponges can be infused with a variety of other ingredients, each with a different aim. For instance, Sadsad notes that konjac sponges can be formulated with “green tea (which is rich in antioxidants) to prevent environmental damage; chamomile, an anti-allergenic [that’s] best for extremely sensitive skin; French red clay to brighten and reduce redness; French pink clay to soften and purify the skin; and French green clay (rich in deep-cleansing properties), [which is] perfect for oily, combination and/or problematic skin.”
How to use konjac sponges
If all of these benefits sound great, but you’re a tad confused as to how to actually use a konjac sponge, Mukti says it’s quite simple: “soak the sponge in warm water until it softens. Next, gently massage the sponge over the skin in circular motions to buff away dead skin cells. When you’ve finished, rinse thoroughly, squeeze out any excess water and hang to dry.”
How often you should replace your konjac sponge
Like many beauty tools, konjac sponges need to be replaced relatively regularly to avoid a build-up of bacteria and/or mould. According to Cosmetic Chemist and founder of Synergie Skin, Terri Vinson, “the konjac sponge is designed to last two to three months, depending on use and care”. She adds, “Being 100 per cent vegetable-plant based, the sponge will naturally deteriorate over time and a damp and humid environment will accelerate decomposition and shorten its lifespan – so don’t leave it in your shower! Instead, rinse the sponge well after each use, and lightly squeeze the excess water out, before allowing it to dry in a well-ventilated area.”
Have you tried konjac sponges before? Share your thoughts and experiences with us in the comments below.
Main image credit: Edward Urrutia
Kate has worked for BEAUTYcrew since early 2016, first as a contributor, before being named Beauty Writer in 2017. She loves picking the brains of the industry's top experts to get to the bottom of beauty's toughest questions. Bronze eyeshadow palettes are her weakness and she's forever on the hunt for the perfect nude nail polish to suit her fair skin. Her words can also be found in Men's Health magazine.