Model holding ocean sea sponge with upper body showing but covered with lather.

Why are natural sponges so expensive?

Natural sponges are often considered quite expensive. If you directly compare the cost of a plastic mesh shower pouf with a luxury bath sponge, it is easy to see why many people believe this. But are they really that expensive?

In this guide to ‘expensive’ natural sponges, we’ll explain how much it really costs to exfoliate skin at home with a luxurious sea sponge product.

A better question: why are plastic sponges so cheap?

Rather than asking why natural sponges are expensive, it is better to question why plastic sponges are so budget friendly. Made from cheap plastic, they are not designed to last beyond a month or two with infrequent use. 

Quick to gather dirt and grime, they quickly become unhygienic to use and cannot be cleaned effectively. For this reason, some experts recommend throwing them away after just three weeks of washing. Not only is this bad for the planet, but it is also incredibly costly when the total number of sponges are calculated. The constant need to replace plastic sponges creates an endless cycle.

Cost breakdown

You can buy a pack of four plastic mesh loofahs for around $2. If you take the advice of experts and discard one sponge every three weeks, you will need around 18 sponges to last the year. This costs $36 total… not including shipping, packaging, and all the environmental damage too.

Meanwhile, a Naroa natural sea sponge starts at just $32 and can be easily cleaned, maintained, and sterilized to last a full year. Even with heavy use every day, a Naroa sponge should still be fresh and usable after 6 months.

But let’s not compare apples with pears. No matter how affordable a plastic mesh pouf is, a natural sea sponge is always the best body scrub to remove dead skin. The texture of a natural sponge cannot be replicated with plastic, so you won’t feel the gentle exfoliation and massaging effects of using a sea sponge if you opt for a plastic mesh pouf.

The reason plastic sponges are so much cheaper than natural sponges (upfront, at least) is because creating a natural sponge requires time, effort, and skill. This is what we do at Naroa, and we believe our ‘expensive’ natural sponges are worth every penny.

Why a natural sea sponge costs more

Natural sea sponges by Naroa are made in nature, so we are always at her mercy and must do our best to support sustainable practices. It’s worth spending more time and money to do this, and many of our customers agree.

Our sea sponges are hand selected and harvested by experienced divers who comb the clear waters of the Caribbean seas. Their voyages can last up to a month, where our divers cut the sponges and begin cleaning them on the boat – all by hand.

Once the sponges reach the shore, they undergo further processing (again, all by hand) with methods and knowledge passed down from generation to generation. After processing, the sponges are inspected and individually hand trimmed to ensure quality standards are maintained. Finally, they are shipped to you. This is a labor-intensive process. It requires a lot of practice and traditional skills that have remained strong in the Greek community for generations. 

Yes, a luxury bath sponge made from natural sea sponges is expensive. But it keeps traditions alive, supports coastal communities, nourishes the environment, and produces a biodegradable product that is amazing for skincare.

A natural sea sponge from Naroa is the best of the best. It may cost a little more upfront to exfoliate skin at home with a natural sea sponge, but it is certainly worth the price.

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