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The Evolution of a Bath Pouf

The Tech Guy Shaun, aka The Tech Guy, aka my boyfriend, is here with another must-read “manly” review. He’s twenty-eight with normal-to-dry skin and suffers from no more acne (much to my envy!).  He has no dedication whatsoever to his writing duties here on Temptalia, given his absence of nearly seven months.  He says it keeps the public wanting more.

Shaun enjoys long walks on the beach, vegging out on the couch watching chick flicks, and cuddling with Mellan. Or maybe not! He handles all the behind-the-scenes action here at Temptalia, from tech support to server woes.

The Evolution of a Bath Pouf

All right, what is this thing called? You know… The spongey-majig? Bath… Pouf… Seriously, what is it really called? Bath pouf… So, I’ve been using something called a bath pouf for over ten years? I don’t know if I can go on.

(2 hours of reflecting and soul searching later…)

Yes, it’s true; I enjoy myself a good… Bath pouf… It is highly effective for exfoliation and administering shower gel to the various parts of my flesh! Wait until they hear about this at the next man meeting. Here’s the thing: there’s no good alternative to this to use in the shower!

You could use your hand, but I find that my hand doesn’t want to go certain places… And it tends to use up soap like it was hoarding it to sell on eBay. There’s the wash cloth, but I just find that thing limp and disgusting. I could use a loofa but my skin IS SENSITIVE. Plus, it’s a plant, and I barely want to eat plants let alone scrub my supple body with one.

Don’t even suggest to me the bar of soap! That thing collects hair like a broom at a hair salon (BOOM). Plus, it usually slips out of your hands and drops on your foot, then followed by: expletives, slipping in the shower, breaking your neck, and you taking a dirt nap! Do you want to single-handedly be responsible for the downfall of mankind?! Bar of soap… Pfft!

Let’s get on to the bath pouf! The bath pouf has three life-cycles. First is the cocoon phase. It is way too tight and doesn’t receive shower gel quite right. The lather-building is poor and the scrubbing is made difficult because of its lack of surface area! This is very scientific. However, once you’ve worked in the pouf it becomes a wondrous thing.

This cycle we like to call: ????? The magic of metamorphosis renders the bath pouf into a being of utmost perfection. It builds lather like a champ and covers your body perfectly with the right amount of exfoliation to scrub ratio. It is the perfect device for delivering your shower gel to your body!

The third phase is the saddest of all: the sunflower phase. Right when you’re getting into the tender years of your showering with your pouf, it grows old and tired and begins spreading out further and further until it has become an amorphous blob of sponge that can no longer be rendered as anything useful. The little rope around it breaks and becomes gross and slimy. It doesn’t hold its shape and becomes less useful in terms of exfoliating.

Here are some tips for you and your loved ones–feel free to read them to each other while sitting in front of a fire drinking a fine bourbon or cognac.

  1. Always wash the soap out of your pouf! If you don’t, the rope gets really slimy and feels so disgusting that you might as well just throw it out.
  2. If the rope breaks you can kind of re-tie it around the pouf and maybe get a few more showers out of it before it becomes unbearable to use. The rope is the lifeblood of the pouf, once it is becomes useless, the pouf loses all its majesty!
  3. To build a good lather, rinse it before use, then pour your soap on. Douse it a bit more with water and squeeze it a few times. This will give you a nice lather!
  4. Give it room to dry! You don’t want this thing to act like a petri dish. Plus it will wear out quicker if it’s constantly soaked.
  5. Buy many, and buy a few in manlier colors. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to cry myself through the shower while washing myself with a lavender pouf. Your guy will use it, but he’ll be more covert-ops about it if it is the color of lilac.

Tell me what you and/or your man use for body cleaning in the comments!


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Amy Avatar

Hahaha! I love his review! It’s informative and funny! Kinda reminds me of Muse. I’ve never read his review before so as I was reading it I was wondering “When did Christine got so worked up and a bit off topic with her reviews?”

mai Avatar

From the title I imagined this great historical post about how the use of a bath poof has evolved over time and the many different variations in material, size, etc. This post turned out to be much more humorous 🙂

Evelyn Avatar

I so needed the laugh this morning! lol I think my pouf is approaching sunflower stage *sigh* time to find a replacement. The darn things are pricey too in some places – you’d think it would scrub me all by itself for the cost.

Bets Avatar

Thank you, Shaun, for that informative and, dare I say, thought-provoking expose on the secret life of the shower pouf. This sensitive topic carries with it a certain…stigma, if you will, that keeps people ashamed and unwilling to discuss it. I’m proud of you for taking this step and coming forward with your shower pouf experience. (and on a serious note, THANK YOU for the best laugh I’ve had in a while!)

Bets Avatar

Bringing life’s little luxuries to the (literally) unwashed masses? You’re truly doing the Lord’s work here. (and I will second everyone else who is looking forward to more of your writings. I happen to be a huge fan of snark!)

Elle Avatar

You guys are awesome. Yes, more posts please! I’ve been a bath pouf person ever since I fell in love with one from Bath and Body works waaay back in the day.

jennifer s Avatar

Hahaha! Love it! This post is great. I’ve never been so enthralled by a bath pouf before. My bf used bar of soap before I came along. One day I just went @ him with a loofah…. HARD. He thinks a loofah is too harsh, I think its exfoliating. So now he uses a special dove mens half pouf, half exfoliator thing. Best of both worlds 🙂

Sarah S. Avatar

I loved this! My (manly) man uses a pouf and I always buy them for him in red, black, dark green, dark blue, etc. I wish I could get him to replace his more often (I do every few weeks, at least). Though, isn’t it supposed to be Step 1: Pouf. Step 2: ?????? Step 3: PROFIT?

Joanna Avatar

Hilarious! Glad to know I’m not the only one who feels this way!

My favourite pouf is from Bath and Body Works. I find the cocoon stage is very short-lived with this brand.

Shaun Avatar

Just take away whatever method he currently uses (if hands, cutoff said hands and place them in milk. I SAW IT ON A MOVIE ONCE! Saw it on a movie? Come on, that joke had so many facets…) and leave the one shower pouf hanging in the stall. This will force an epic stare down, inevitably resulting in the usage and eventual convert to the all-powerful pouf!

Karen Avatar

Haha this made my morning! I cant ever get my boyfriend to use a pouf…maybe I shouldnt have gotten a dark purple one…

Krystal S. Avatar

As I was reading this, I kept thinking “Is this Temptalia’s new way of writing? I like it, but it’s much more conversational…” Then at the end, I realized – Hey… it’s the Tech Guy! I do love his reviews. A+ reading in the morning. ^_^

LauraJ Avatar

That’s hilarious, and so true! I sent this to my husband, with the disclaimer that he’d totally understand, and not to click the link to a pink website when too many other dudes are around.

Ana G. Avatar

we also use a bath pouf and my husband keeps telling me to buy them either white or blue!!He simply refuses to use my fuchsia one 🙂

Catriona Avatar

Definitely! I find they last a lot longer than poufs and I can get a better scrub with them. I sometimes find poufs hard to grip properly.

Sydney Avatar

You’re much better off using your hand. Those bath pouf things are very absorbent, which makes them bacteria breeding grounds. I used to use one, but then I took microbiology.

dee Avatar

Love it! I was like, why does this not sound like Christine? Ohhhhh! I’m probably at the third stage of my own pouf. Gotta go get me another one.

Joyce Avatar

“…until it has become an amorphous blob of sponge…”
LOL! that reminded me of a scene in The Office when Andy calls Toby “an amorphous blob of khaki.”

My husband is surprisingly particular about his shower loofas (technical term? I always called it a FOOF!). He used to use his hands before he met me. He used my foof once and has never gone back!

I love EcoTools makeup brushes but they make a KILLER foof! My husband’s and my personal favorite xP

Shaun Avatar

KILLER FOOFU!!! All I could think about was Killer Tofu when I saw “Killer foof.” Man, you got me to spout off a DOUG joke of all shows. That’s really showing my age. I’m going to go cry with my pouf and remember the good times.

I will have to try a swankier pouf because I’ve only ever used the cheapo ones from the drug store/supermarket.

Hannelore Avatar

NO no nooo! Foof means something entirely different in my language!:D it means, well, your ‘lady bits’ in Dutch (spelled “foef” but pronounced the same) !

Kelly C. Avatar

Yay, the return of Tech Guy! My boyfriend doesn’t even use a pouf anymore, he just uses his hands and one of those scrubby Axe shower gels. Needless to say he goes through body wash very quickly (though all his chest hair does make for good lather, lol)! I am a recent convert to the Salux scrubby cloths myself. Such a good scrub!

Amy Avatar

I agree! Salux cloths kick the pouf’s fluffy butt – I recently used a pouf when traveling after being used to the Salux and was like “this is not exfoliating at all! I’m going to have to scrub like crazy when I get home!”

Rengirl Avatar

And let’s not forget to mention that the Salux makes back scrubbing super easy and the scrub feels so good – it’s practically a massage!

Anna Avatar

Hilarious and so so true, i love the stages. so scientific indeed. I read the first 2 paragraphs and was like “uhh Christine, this is odd” before I realized it was Shaun hahaha.

Sara Avatar

I always thought of bath poufs (seriously, who invented that word?) as strange things, I never used one because I was convinced that the soap would just slip right through! But congratulations, you’ve talked me into trying it out now!

Mimine Avatar

Lol, excellent, love the english name of it 😀 (i’m french)
Here we call it a “fleur de douche” (shower flower), and it’s hard to make your boyfriend use it with such a girly name. But once it’s done, they become bath-pouf-lover for life too 😀

rk Avatar

I always loved bath poofs, but they seemed like petri dishes. THEN…I found, at the grocery store no less, an “unpoufed” scrubbing cloth.

That’s right, it’s flat, large like 2 or 3 washclothes, and a nice rough texture.
If you squish it up, voila, bath poof.
If you stretch it behind you and around your back, NICE back scrubbing action.

The best part? You can rinse it clean and it dries in NO time flat. Cuz it’s flat.
I’m hooked. NEVER will I go back to anything else.

Jamie Avatar

I read this and noticed that my pouf is at its sunflower stage LOL
Thanks Shaun, more tech guy posts!!

P.s what’s your favorite chick flick? Haha

Chris25 Avatar

I love this! The Evolution of a Bath Pouf…to be honest I do use mine until it falls apart. It’s bad, I know, but I always feel I can get at least one more use out of it. The BF uses the pouf as well, with Dove soap. Very manly. 🙂

Izzy Avatar

This review confused me so I had to scroll to the end to make sure it wasn’t Christine’s new way of writing!

I call them poofs – is it really poufs? I guess that makes sense. I tried to get my ex to use mine, usually turquoise. He wouldn’t. It’s good to know some men do though!

Sweetpearl Avatar

Haha loved this post, my pouf is currently transitioning from cocoon to ????? and this was hard to accomplih took a couple months but we’re getting there! lol

Steph Avatar

Mine is past the sunflower stage. . . the string broke and I wrapped it back around and tied it. It still lathers but does not even vaguely resemble a pouf.

LH Avatar

LOL loved the post and glad your back for now. I agree bar soap is the devil incarnate seriously I broke my wrist after slipping on one once never again will bar soap be allowed in my home maybe unless I’m covered in sewage and there isn’t any other soap around and that’s a big maybe. I’m a loofa girl with my dry skin its a must and boyfriend likes the bath pouf preferably in black or navy. Cant wait for the next post 🙂

Edani Avatar

This is a rather timely post. I had a large calamity involving my pouf yesterday. After soaping it and beginning the usual washin’s, I suddenly find 3 LARGE wolf spiders have migrated from said pouf to my person. Never has someone so soapy moved so fast. Needless to say, that pouf (which was beyond sunflower stage anyway) is being retired for its transgressions.

KaylaK Avatar

Omg, I have no idea what I would have done, maybe like the other person said and died!!! Gosh I’ll be paranoid taking showers for awhile lol.

Dusty Avatar

FYI I scrolled through the last couple days of posts and clicked on this one first! LOL 🙂 Somehow things just feel right with the world now.

Great tips! I don’t use a “pouurff” I use bar soap (insert dropping the soap joke here). I like it (add another dropping the soap joke). Dr. Bronner’s Classic Unscented to be exact (one more for good measure?).

Cecilia Avatar

Have you looked into exfoliating gloves? The ‘evolution’ process is about the same. There’s going to be that initial period of not-so-pleasant showers because of how coarse the gloves are at first. Then you get to the nice period of time where the gloves are finally broken in. Eventually, it will get limp and gross and need replacing, but I find it to be a long while compare to the pouf. 🙂

Stephanie Avatar


My husband tends to use his bath pouf well into the “sunflower” stage so I’m responsible for the “changing of the guards” so to speak. They also make “manly” ones now that are gray & red (courtesy of Old Spice, I think).

megan Avatar

I love using a bath pouf. I used to use a bath cloth when I was a teenager but I haven’t looked back since I found a bath pouf. Mine is close to the sunflower stage lol
The bf using his hands…I don’t get it!!!
Glad to see your posts Shaun, funny as always:)

Devi Avatar

Seeing as I’ve only been browsing this site for 3 months, I did not know that Christine’s boyfriend made blog posts here. I also did not know that he was drop dead hilarious. I actually laughed out loud while reading this post, something that has almost never happened to me.

I thought I was weird for being afraid to use a bar of soap due to the fact that you could slip and fall and become severely injured. xD Glad to know other people think like this too. 😀 I use a bar of soap anyways, but for the months where I did use a Bath Pouf, it really feels good. I find that a loofah seems much harsher on this skin.

But yeah, you totally should keep your posting to a minimum.. it definitely makes us want more. o_o

El Avatar

Love your posts! My hubby and I use a pouf too but right now it’s BEYOND sunflower stage. We also have this Japanese exfloiating cloth. It’s made out of the same material as the pouf but with a slightly different texture (it’s just rough enough and not net-like like the pouf) and is long like a scarf.

Inaya Avatar

Oh man I was worried u 2 broke up. Because clearly i think beauty reviews are indicative of happiness in a relationship :p. Glad to have u back! 😀

Emily Avatar

My bf and I keep separate ones in the shower cuz his turns from sunflower to roadkill stage in less than two weeks, so gross. *shudder*

John Avatar

Bahaha. This is definitely an interesting and hilarious post. Um, one of these typically transforms from cocoon to sunflower in about… two weeks. I guess I have a thick hide or something, or I just like scrubbing. Even with the tips provided, which I follow, mostly, body poufs or loofahs just don’t do enough for me. I actually bit the bullet and tried the Salux Body Cloth that’s so raved on MakeupAlley, and I have to say that stuff is pretty amazing. I don’t even have to use sugar/salt scrubs anymore. I mean, it’s nothing particularly unique, it’s just a very good exfoliating tool. Yeah, that was probably too much information. Haha.

One more thing, I’m surprised that you made the distinction to describe different shades of purple as lavender and lilac. I personally don’t even know the difference. Christine’s rubbing on you. :]

John Avatar

Agreed. I mean how does crushed insinuate any reference to a change in color. I’d imagine anything crushed retains its color and pigmentation. But then again… carbon or graphite crushed at insane pressures becomes diamonds, and that is certain a huge color change. But then again, there is also heat present… which drives chemical processes and composition and manifests with physical expression… Wow, okay this train of thought has gone on for far too long. God I’m such nerd.

Mec Avatar

My bath pouf is on the sunflower phase D: On the other hand, my exfoliating gloves….oh! those babies last forever!! Great post, Shaun! super funny.

KaylaK Avatar

I love it! This was absolutely hilarious but informative too! lol I was just wondering when I was going to replace mine..

Kate & Zena Avatar

If only I could get my dad (and mom) to use a pouf. He refuses to use a pouf; he’s a (retired) military man. He uses a bar of soap (okay, it’s Dove. I will admit he’s the one military guy who uses Dove soap. Don’t tell the others. It’s sissy soap in the military world. My mom at least uses a washcloth and Dove. What’s the shame of a pouf people?) The world of poufs is a wonderful thing.

I totally think the middle stage should be called Nirvana or Heaven or Perfection or something. Question marks are not the answer!

Sam Avatar

I made my boyfriend use one coz he was washing my fav lush soap down the drain with the bar of soap method of cleansing. The pouf uses less soap! Soo economical. 🙂

braveviet Avatar

you really poured a lot of thought into this. My man had used to use bar of soap. I complained a lot so finally he’s switched to using this magic. Result: we have a cleaner bathroom, the shower curtain stays fresh longer without the bar soap scum

Vicky Avatar

hehehe You’re funny 🙂

The husband and I use bath poufs. They used to turn into sunflowers really quick until I bought some (yes, some, I’m all for the backups!) at The Body Shop. They’re really good. They have the kind you used in your picture and another one that’s a bit more like a ball/apple shape. I don’t think you’d like it, though, because it stays in the cocoon stage a lot longer.

Bekka Avatar

The boyf is a washrag kind of guy. I bought him a perfectly good bath… pouf… thingy – a nice black one with a silicon strap that’s all nice and MANLY – but he refuses to use it. What’s up with that?

It’s about time to replace mine. The string broke and it’s getting kind of sunflowery. You’ve served me well, Pinky Puff.

Adria Avatar

Don’t worry about using a bath “pouf,” Shaun. Almost all those bad mammajamma soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan use them!

Christian Avatar

I have been an avid bath pouf user for most of my life :). Unfortunately, my boyfriend doesn’t share the same passion and affection for it as you do and he is committed to his wash cloth! 🙁 *sigh* He won’t give it up and thus our shower will always have 1 pouf and 1 wash cloth!

daylami Avatar

This reminded me of Craig “Ironhead” Heyward’s awesome ads for Zest body wash: “But Ironhead, what’s with this thingy?” RIP, Ironhead.

My pouf from the Target dollar bin went straight from cocoon to “long useless tube of seaweed” in about three days. The boyfriend uses poufs but he also enjoys painful rituals like scrubbing his skin off with an extra-rough cloth from the Japanese supermarket, and also taking 800℉ baths in the middle of July to “burn off the sweat”.

Ryou Avatar

Oh Shaun, everytime you write you get your pink card punched. Don’t worry, we love you even more everytime you do. =P

I do completely agree that bar soaps are the evil. Heck, I’m planning to turn my LUSH bar soaps into shower gels. Soaps that smell heavenly but unavailable in liquid form are temptation from hell itself. >:

Dia Avatar

This article was hilarious! Write more often, Shaun! 🙂

I usually buy Bath & Body Works poufs, but the rope comes undone before it’s even out of the cocoon phase. When that happens, I have my husband tie it in a really tight knot, then use a lighter to melt the knot. (This only works if the rope isn’t extremely flammable! The B&BW ones are coated.) Melt a little, then blow to cool, melt some more, blow some more, etc. 🙂 This keeps the rope from unraveling until you’re ready to throw the pouf out entirely! But my husband is a bit of a pyro anyway; I would only recommend this to people who are well versed in burning things. 😉

Grace Chin Avatar

My bf uses some exfoliating gel for body bought by mistake as a face scrub for me from a discount store lol. Im so glad i even made him use a face cleanser and moisturizer hes so addicted to it now. Do you use face stuff Shaun?

Sarah Avatar

God gave me arms that render me Tyrannosaurus rex-like. Probably not really, but it feels as such, so I’m a bath pouf on a stick person. It doesn’t get much better than your bath pouf being on a stick. 🙂

Cindy Avatar

Hahaha, great article. My husband uses the Axe “detailer”–one of those two-sided deals. I am a die-hard pouf user. I like the one by Eco Tools. It’s made of recycled plastic, and it doesn’t sunflower out or unravel like the cheaper ones. It’s also a unisex beige color. I LOVED/hated the Soap & Glory pouf–the mesh was covered with a filmy soft material that felt so good, but it tore very easily.
FYI you should disinfect your pouf on a regular basis. Soak it in the sink with diluted bleach, or put it on the top shelf of the dishwasher. Microwave disinfection works too (nuke the wet pouf for about a minute), but the side lying down always gets flattened and crunchy.

Rengirl Avatar

Bath pouf?! Psh – what is it 1990? Get yourself a Salux Nylon Japanese Bath Towel and you’ll never look back. It’s awesome from start to finish (finish being several months later when it gets weak enough and tears).

Karin Avatar

This is a great review!! It made me laugh 😀 My bf is slowly getting into using a pouf. I bought him a white one since it was the most ‘manly’ colour i could find and he does agree that it needs less showergel and secretly i think he loves it 😉

Vale Avatar

“Buy many, and buy a few in manlier colors. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to cry myself through the shower while washing myself with a lavender pouf. Your guy will use it, but he’ll be more covert-ops about it if it is the color of lilac.”
well, I think that if the guy wants to use it, he can simply go and buy one by himself of the colour he does prefer! He is adult and able to drive to a shop!

Natalie Avatar

Hahaha this is brilliant! My boyfriend, too, uses the pouf just like me! Although he agrees with your advice of manlier colors. We don’t live together but mine is neon pink (and currently a sunflower, I need a new one stat!) but his is a very manly royal blue. You should write more! Not that I don’t adore Christine but your posts are wonderful as well!

Lindsay Avatar

Ok, I just read the article and the comments following. I am laughing my head off! Thanks for making my day and Shaun, we want more writing from you! (I think you should disclose was shower gel/bodywash you use on your pouf, lol) 😛

Rebecca Avatar

Sadly my bath pouf is on its way out! it was a good one too .. im quite disappointed to see it go 🙁 we had many showers and baths together.. they just wont be the same. R.I.P.

Joanna Avatar

Haha, I love this! My bf started using a pouf after I forced one on him… er, introduced him to one. I brought over a white one and a blue one and he chose the white one because he didn’t want to seem like he was making too big of a deal about it not being manly. He is now converted but will never admit it to anyone but me (so I’m here admitting it for him, ha).

Instant Karma Avatar

Excellent post! Very funny and VERY accurate. I can tell my current pouf is on the verge of entering sunflower stage. I think I can get another couple weeks out of it, though.

Tiffany Avatar

I was honestly wondering recently when you would return! yay! Sorry to say, I will never use a poof. All I think about is when my science teacher told us it was the most bacteria infested thing in our homes and to get rid of it if we had one. The hand does indeed use too much soap. I now use a wash cloth and toss it in the laundry after each use. Best for my germophobic mind.

benepenny Avatar

I was simply doing a Google search on how to clean these bath pouf things and came across this article. LOL – this was a GREAT read in the middle of my otherwise boring day! Thanks for the chuckle and I, too, am all too familiar with all the stages of ‘la pouf’ … and the “????” stage – CLASSIC!!!!!!

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