Exfoliating gloves vs scrub, which is best for you?

Exfoliation is important if you want soft, smooth skin. How you achieve this will be determined by your needs.

Both the exfoliating glove and exfoliating scrub exfoliate your skin well, the best for you depends on your needs. Exfoliating gloves are cheaper long term, they increase circulation but can be abrasive and attract bacteria. Scrubs are more expensive long term, can cause skin irritation but don’t hold bacteria like gloves can.

The choice between exfoliating gloves and exfoliating scrubs can be a hard one. There are many factors that will come into play when trying to figure out which to pick. It can depend on convenience, budget, skin type and much more. Picking between an exfoliating scrub and glove will depend on many factors. This article looks at exfoliating gloves vs scrub, which is the best for you

Exfoliating gloves vs scrub

Exfoliation can be achieved in a variety of ways. Physical exfoliation which includes scrubs, dry brushes, and using body polishes to help you achieve soft skin. The brush and the glove options are great at increasing circulation, reducing cellulite and removing the dead skin cells on your skin. Scrubs are great at removing the dead skin this method is less abrasive. Both of these types of exfoliators will give you immediate results

This article will be a closer look at two physical exfoliations which I recommended for the body, these being exfoliating gloves and exfoliating with a scrub. I would not recommend using the glove or harsh scrubs on your face. This is a well-loved scrub and these are well-loved exfoliating gloves and brushes.


Exfoliating gloves are gloves that you can wear on your hands when wanting to exfoliate, this makes it easy to change the pressure when exfoliating. They can come in the form of a mitt or an actual glove that fits around your fingers which enables them to get into those a hard to reach places. They are convenient because they usually last longer than scrubs in the long run and they are cheaper.

Exfoliating gloves can be designed mitts that have a loofah-like texture on the outside, these don’t exfoliate as well because they aren’t as deep cleaning when compared to the gloves with rougher fibres.  The more deep cleaning ones are made up out of a variety of fibres which buff your skin to clear out skin cells, clear pores and prevent blackheads. Here is a great exfoliating glove.

How to use:

Add your shower gel onto the glove and rub in circular motions on the skin. If it’s your first time using it and you are used to using something soft like a loofah then you might see your dead skin cells coming off. Note: if you rub too hard then your skin might get irritated so be careful. After use remember to rinse out the soap and let the glove dry completely to avoid bacteria building up


  • Easy to use product
  • Budget-friendly
  • Good texture to exfoliate the body
  • Effective in exfoliation
  • Better for the environment generally


  • If not careful it can scratch your skin
  • Can collect bacteria if not dried correctly


These are formulas that contain sugar, salt scrubs or beads, they are formulated with ting grainy particles which buff the skin. The texture of this scrub is abrasive in order to separate the dead skin cells from the fresh skin underneath. They can be bought online, instore or even made at home with everyday ingredients such as sugars and salts. Here is a great body scrub

The scrub you pick should be dependent on your skin type as well as your skin goals. All scrubs will slough the dead skin off but some exfoliators will irritate sensitive skin, especially if the skin is prone to irradiation and reddening.

The gritty particles of scrubs can be made up of a variety of products such as ground-up walnut shells, salt, sugar, microbeads, coffee, charcoal or turmeric. Though walnut sends can cause micro-tears in the skin and microbeads have been shown to be very detrimental to the environment.

To use simply collect some product into your hands and rub it in circular motions your skin. Rubbing on dry skin can cause some damage to your skin so be sure to rub into wet skin so it exfoliates but does not harm you. If you notice that your skin is becoming irritated from the scrub then it’s too harsh for you or you might be allergic to some of the ingredients, if you get a tingly feeling read this article.


  • Easy to use product
  • Depending on which product it can be budget-friendly
  • Good texture to exfoliate the body
  • Effective in exfoliation


  • Will have to be replaced often if used as much as the glove
  • Has a higher chance of causing a reaction depending on what you’re allergic too
  • Can scratch your skin if using an abrasive option
  • Packaging can be more harmful to the environment

Should you use exfoliating gloves every day?

No. you should not exfoliate every day. You can use exfoliating gloves or scrubs two or three times a week depending on how sensitive your skin is. If your skin is sensitive exfoliate once a week. Note that you need to use a good moisturiser afterwards, if not then it can dry out your skin. Here is a great body moisturiser.

If you would like more options on great exfoliating products for your body then follow this link where I go over my top picks for the best scrubs, polishes and brushes for your needs and your budget. For some great drugstore chemical facial exfoliators follow this link. If you are interested in the best Korean chemical exfoliators for your face then follow this link 

Exfoliating gloves vs bacteria

After some time of using your exfoliating gloves, they will definitely start growing bacteria. If your gloves are speckled with bacteria you may want to get rid of them. Considering that you use this glove to exfoliate your body I’d think twice about keeping this tool in use for too long.

The bathroom is generally the wettest room in any house and because of this, there is constant moisture and damp air in the air. Your exfoliating glove is probably kept in your bathroom all day, this makes it a hotbed of various fungus and bacteria. All that moisture causes bacteria to grow right in the gloves nooks and crannies. If this fungus or bacteria gets onto or worse into your skin you may find yourself developing infections

How to clean exfoliating gloves

Let it dry: you need to get your glove out of the bathroom and allow it to dry properly. If enough clean fresh air gets into the bathroom there is a better chance of your glove staying reasonably clean.

Wash it: After using your exfoliating glove it will be a good idea to wash it then let it dry off after rinsing thoroughly. This will at least get rid of your dead skin cells and some of the bacteria that may be in your glove

Heat it up: Heat can help keep the glove clean. The hot water you shower in isn’t enough to really clean the glove. If you want to really clean the glove you’ll need to pop it in the microwave. Leave your gloves in the microwave for about 20 seconds on high to clean it. (don’t do this if you are using plastic gloves, they will wind up melting)

Bleaching it: bleach is one of the strongest cleaning agents we have, and using bleach on your glove will surely rid it of any bacteria that may be making a home in your glove. Let the glove sit and soak in some bleach to kill off any bacteria. Use 5 percent bleach for this process. Leave it in the bleach for 5 minutes they rinse the glove out thoroughly.

Chuck it: at some point we have to let things go, keeping an exfoliating sponge for months on end is really not a good idea. This especially true if the colour or smell of the glove changes. It is recommended that we only keep the gloves for three months, if you really want to be safe only keep it for one month

What are exfoliating gloves made of?

Loofa glove: a loofah exfoliating glove combines the versatility of using a glove and the added quality of having a loofa. These are one of the more gentle exfoliating gloves and you can use them on delicate skin. They are made from long gourd fibres, derived from vegetables.

Kessa glove: this is a glove that can also be used on more delicate skin. The kessa gloves are made out of a knitted fabric called mourning crepe. It is widely used in Turkish baths and is usually black in colour

Knitted cotton/hemp glove: this is not as smooth as the first two but it can also be used on sensitive skin. This type of material is quite durable, more durable than gloves made from plant fibres or animal hairs.

Animal fibre/ plant fibre glove: the animal fibres used in these gloves include goat hair or horsehair. If the glove is made out of plant fibres the plant fibres used will be saw palmetto or sisal

Are exfoliating gloves good for the face?

You need to exfoliate your face and you need to exfoliate your body, but you shouldn’t be using the same tool to exfoliate both. The skin on your face is much more delicate than the skin on your body. Exfoliating gloves are generally harsher because the skin your body can take and needs more of a rough exfoliation. If you use a body exfoliating glove on your face you can wind up damaging the skin on your face.

What can I use to exfoliate my body?

The skin on your back is tough so you need to use something quite abrasive to exfoliate it. Your regular facial exfoliator is made for the delicate skin on your face. Your body needs an exfoliator made out of something course

Exfoliating brush: this long brush is a great way to get your back exfoliated. It is also a great solution if you want to dry brush, this helps with improving circulation all over your body.

Exfoliation glove: gloves are a great way to get into all the nooks and crannies on your body. They fit on your hand and are a great alternative if you find gripping the brush uncomfortable.

Sponges: these give you a great lather and can be used for everyday use because they are quite gentle. They will get remove any unwanted dead skin cells from your body

Exfoliating scrubs: you can get store bought exfoliating scrubs or you can make your own at home, sugar or salt are ingredients that are commonly used for scrubs. You would apply the scrub onto your skin and rub in circular motions to get the dead skin cells off. Then wash off with water, it’s the cleanest way to exfoliate because the scrub doesn’t collect mould like the other exfoliating tools.

Tip: Don’t use a washcloth to exfoliate your acne, to find out why click here.

How do you exfoliate your back?

If you want healthy skin on your back you need to exfoliate it as well. You’ll need a specific exfoliator when you’re cleaning your back because your hands can’t reach as easily. Enter: the body brush.

This product helps get to the parts of your back that your hands simply can’t. In addition to exfoliating, you will get a lovely back massage while you’re at it. As a bonus, because of the extra stiffness, the body brush is a better alternative to using a sponge

How to:

  1. Start off in the shower using clean warm water to get your back wet, using warm water and not hot water will prevent the oils on your body from getting stripped.
  2. Apply your body wash on the bristle end of your body brush  
  3. Hold the body brush over your shoulder so the rough part can reach your back
  4. Scrub your back in up and down motions and circular motions switching your hands to reach different parts of your back.
  5. When you’ve reached all over your back rinse the soap off with warm water
  6. After washing make sure you moisturise your back well. If your skin is not moisturised afterwards your back will dry out.

That’s it for my article exploring the differences between exfoliating gloves vs scrubs. I hope that it was helpful to you and you figured out which is better for you, your skin type and your skin goals. I hope you try them out to achieve softer smoother skin. If you enjoyed this article please share it.

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