Find out how to grow luffa, where to buy them and all the things they're good for. Use luffa sponge for the body, home, and they're even edible!

12 Ways to Use Luffa Sponge You Won’t Believe

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Find out how to grow luffa, where to buy them and all the things they’re good for. Use luffa sponge for the body, home, and they’re even edible!

picture of two loofah sponges.

Luffa shower sponge

I keep a luffa in my shower and twice a week I give my skin a good exfoliating. You can use them as a shower sponge in place of a washcloth every day if you want as well. I love the way my skin feels after I sluff all the dead skin off with my luffa.

Eco-friendly loofah

One of my favorite things about loofahs is they are biodegradable and a natural fiber. They don’t put any plastic or synthetic material into the ecosystem or landfills. I know I can feel good about the product I’m using and that it’s not harming the earth. This makes the loofah the best choice for me. It’s not as hard as you might think to ditch and switch to natural products.

Bath loofah

I run a shoelace through the middle of the bath loofah and hang it in the shower by my razor. If you hang your loofah so it can dry out between uses, it will last for months. There are many benefits of scrubbing with a luffa.

Many people have questioned the spelling of luffa and Wikipedia says either luffa or loofah is correct. Spell it how you’d like, just get some, grow some and use some. They are awesome! What can you do with your luffas once you have grown them? They are so useful!

How to use a loofah

To exfoliate, wet the loofah with warm water to soften it. Apply soap to the loofah sponge. Rub skin gently in a circular motion for a few seconds working your way all over your face. Move down your neck and continue until your whole body is exfoliated. 

loofah with a string running through it for the shower.

Luffa sponge uses

If you have a tough pan to clean, but don’t want to scratch the finish, grab your luffa sponge. It’s abrasive, but the natural fibers won’t scratch Teflon or any other surface. I love being able to get tough, stuck on food off the dishes with my luffas. Just like in the shower, make sure to store it in a place where it can completely dry between uses.

Click here to see more scrubbies you can make yourself just by repurposing things you already have. So smart!

Natural loofah sponge

You can clean the top of your stove, your cabinet doors, tough spots on the floor, or anything else in the kitchen with your luffa without fear of damaging your surfaces.

Luffas are great for cleaning those stuck on bugs that get stuck to the grill and front bumper of your car. They always seem impossible to remove. All you have to do is soap up your car and scrub away with your trusty luffa.

They can also be helpful in removing oil and tar from roads and that black gunky build up on the wheels. They can be squished to fit into any shape of surface too.

Find out how to grow luffa, where to buy them and all the things they're good for. Use luffa sponge for the body, home, and they're even edible!

How to grow luffa plant seeds

Luffa plant vines have a very long growing season and need plenty of space and a sturdy trellis to grow on. If you have long, warm summers, you’ll have great success growing luffas. Even kids can grow luffas. Check out how here.

Do you ever get a greenish build up on your guttering, downspout or other outer surfaces of your house? Luffas can scrub that right off and have it looking great in no time. You can get mud spatter off the bottom part of your house, clean up your siding and even scrub up your pots before you put plants in them in the spring.

Luffa soap

Bars of soap with slices of luffa sponge inside are sold in high-end stores. They look gorgeous and so fancy. They can also be ground to make a facial scrub. I have seen soaps with the ground luffa in them for exfoliating, but I have also heard of making a liquid face scrub with it. That would be cool to try.

Loofah benefits

Do you ever come in from the garden with gunk all around your cuticles and under your nails? I do all the time. You can run over and around your nail to clean that off in a jiffy. It’s amazing how well it works!

You can use a flat handle or make one from a yardstick or other wood you have around to make a back scratcher with a luffa. Each luffa has tunneled holes from one end to the other.

You can put the stick through one of the holes and attach it with some adhesive. You could use glue or even just tie it in there. Then you could use the luffa to scratch your back or even wash your back in the tub. Soap it up and wash away.

When you get your shoes super muddy, you can use luffas to scrub the mud out of the treads. It works super easy and the luffas rinse clean with just a little water. Luffas are wonderful for not holding on to the grime you clean with them.

slice of luffa in bottom of soap dish

How to use Loofah

You can slice a round of luffa and place it in your soap dish so your soap will sit up out of any collected water. It’s great to help make your soap last longer and save you money. They are really tough to cut unless you use a serrated knife, it will cut through them like butter!

luffa sponge on a string, wash cloth, and soap dish with slice of luffa holding bar of soap

If you pick luffas when they are under 5 inches, they are still soft inside. You can eat them raw or cook them. The fibers don’t form until the luffas are about a foot or so. They are sometimes referred to as Chinese okra.

They taste kind of like cucumbers and kind of like zucchini. People use them in stir-frys. I have tried them raw, but not cooked. I always wanted to save most of them for drying, so I haven’t eaten many. Click here for luffa dishes you can make. Looks pretty yummy. 

You can use the fibers of the luffa in water to hold a plant you’re trying to root. That will help keep the plant upright and make sure the stem is in the water. You can also use the luffa fibers as a planting medium similar to coco coir or peat like what those little peat pellets are made of. They would make a great stem holder for an arrangement of flowers too. Who needs a frog when you have a luffa for your vase?

You can let the kids dip luffas in paint and paint with them. You could also paint a room with them for a super interesting textured appearance. The sides of the luffa would make a different texture than cutting one in half and painting with the end. It would be fun to see how it turns out. You can do a base color and then use another color to do the texture over the top.

Best loofah

There are many different varieties of loofahs and you can get a few different kinds of loofah seeds. We are experimenting with a new kind this year. But the best kind has a tight, fairly soft mesh. This depends more on ripeness than variety. If you harvest before it turns completely brown, your fibers will be perfect for the best loofah. 

I’m sure there are tons more ways luffas can be used. I love using them. I also love the idea of growing my own supplies. It makes me feel very self-sufficient. I hope you will try growing some. It’s super fun.

Here’s a great guide for growing many kinds of gourds!

You can also check out how to grow cotton, birdhouse gourds, or wheat. You can even grow giant bushel gourds to use for containers.

Are you new to growing and need the basics for getting started? This will help!

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Find out how to grow luffa, where to buy them and all the things they're good for. Use luffa sponge for the body, home, and they're even edible!

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  1. Do u harvest them when they get brown on vine or green when harder to peel?
    What do u do for rats that have come to eat on some?

    1. Check out the article on how to grow them. It tells all the information I have learned over the years. I wait until they get a few brown freckles but not all the way brown to harvest and peel them. I’ve never had any rats bother them or anything else. We have a big squirrel and raccoon problem and they never pay any attention to the luffas. Here’s a link to the article. I hope it helps! Thank you for reading!

  2. My father and I have been growing them for a few years and have enjoyed making
    gifts by slicing them and making soaps with goats milk and essential oils. The vines do need lots of room to grow. I haven’t tried eating one yet but think I will this year since they have antioxidants and nutrients, which most of us are lacking these days with so much processed foods. Thanks for sharing your article.

      1. Yes they do need a lot of room to grow. I plant them in a 1/2 barrel by our chain link fence and as it grows it makes for a nice hedge that’s always in bloom. Many gave commented as to how nice /natural it is . Great for showing children what becomes of a luffa in its different stages, food, a sponge, a cleaning utensils….

  3. Luffa’s can be coarse or smooth (mild). It appears that blond seeded Luffa’s are smooth and the black seeded ones are coarse. Perhaps smoothness can also be a trait of picking the Luffa’s early. I have grown both black seeded and blond seeded types this year and am at the stage of letting the pods dry out before opening the shell. I’ll compare them.
    Also, I have grown “Vine Okra” Luffa’s which are coarse.
    Other notes: I have kept Luffa seeds in the freezer for 20+ years and they are still as good as new, as this years crop Attests. Also, I find that the beautiful yellow flowers specifically attract Bumble Bees.
    Chuck Johnson

    1. I find that the smoothness depends on time of harvest more than seed type, i’ve had a variety and only have grown the same type of seed over and over again, black. The seeds do keep beautifully and bees do love them. Thanks for your input.

    2. I had some this season that I planted, that had a little mold on them from being in the bag……I have never had such an amazing crop like I Am right now!!! My plants are taking over!!!

  4. I bought 5 loofah gourds from a local grower. 2 had black up one side.( didn’t think they would get worse) I socked them all as I was directed in water over night. They were very easy to strip the outer shell and expose the lighter inside. however the 2 that had the black got even worse looking and felt slimy. I discarded them for fear of mold. I wanted to find more uses then just for bathing. Your articular was very helpful and I am going to try all of them.

  5. I had no idea you could grow luffas! That’s awesome! I loved these tips too… I especially love the back scratcher idea. Never would have thought of that! And the scrubbing pans idea would have been helpful today. ?

  6. First off I never even knew you could grow your own luffas!! How cool! You’ve got me shocked at all of these haha, I didn’t know a luffa had so many uses!

  7. Someone was growing luffas on their boulevard and gave me one last season. The kids turned it into a plaything, and discovered the huge quantity of seeds inside (which also became playthings). I snagged a few of them and will plant them on my boulevard this year. So cool!

    These are such great ideas!