Sponges, natural unbleached sea sponges

Rated 5.00 out of 5 based on 6 customer ratings
(6 customer reviews)


With many so many uses, natural unbleached Greek sea sponges make washing, bathing, cleaning, pet care and housework even more enjoyable and more effective. You can buy all the most important species in a huge range of sizes here.



Sea sponges are among nature’s most curious organisms. They have been collected for thousands of years for cosmetic, personal, household, animal, medicinal and craft uses. Sponges are valued for their incredible water holding capacity, for their long use lives and for the ease with which they can be cleaned.  Humans have always marveled at the beauty, special feel and the unique properties of natural sea sponges. Throughout the ages, Greek sponges have always been regarded as superior in quality and so all of our sponges are Greek. They are harvested by hand by specially trained sponge divers, and after the sponge is ‘cropped’ a replacement sponge grows.  The process is somewhat akin to the pruning of plants. The process is fully sustainable.

For the body, nothing quite compares to a natural sea sponge for gentle exfoliation, for washing the face and body, for removing make-up, for bathing the delicate skin of babies and children or for adding vigour to a shower or luxury to the bath.

Our sponges can be used with soap to create a foamy lather and with water for abundant rinsing. We like to use sponges when we wash in clay or exfoliate with hemp oil soap and sponges can also be used for professional massage.

Sponges also excel at cleaning, reaching into every nook, cranny and crevice.  They help to transform cleaning into a joyous experience!

Why Choose a Sea Sponge?

  • Natural sponges are  a  joy to see, hold, use and care for plus they are brilliant at washing and cleaning. The surface of the sponge is covered in tiny protrusions which give natural sponges superior cleaning power over artificial sponges.
  • Sponges are amazing for washing, bathing and showering, optimizing the condition and feel of the skin as nearly every species exfoliates dead skin. The hands alone, just can not accomplish this! We use the hemp oil soap to prepare the skin for exfoliation.
  • Natural sponges are easy to clean and with good care and task appropriate use, they should last much longer than their synthetic counterparts.
  • These sponges are unbleached making them suitable for use on sensitive skin. Unbleached sponges are more durable than bleached sponges and they do not disturb the healthy flora on the skin.
  • Children are fascinated by sponges and we have met adults in the 90’s who still remember being bathed with a sponge and they can still identify the some type of sponge they used from among our range! Sponges make a lasting impression upon children and adults. Everyone adores using them. Perhaps it might help children who normally protest at bath time to enjoy their bath more?
A Fresco Showing a Diver. Tomb of the Diver, Paestum 470BC

A Fresco Showing a Diver. Tomb of the Diver, Paestum 470BC


How to Use and Care for Your Sponge

1. Choose the right species and size of sponge for the task. Don’t hesitate to call us for advise!
2. Wet and soften the sponge before use—Immerse the sponge in water and squeeze it several times.
3. Use the sponge for your washing or cleaning adventures. But keep in mind , it a sponge, not a scouring pad, so be kind to it so that it enjoys a long life.
4. Clean the sponge when necessary—Wet a very grubby sponge in hot water, massage real soap into it, such as our naturally anti-bacterial hemp oil soft soap. Leave the soapy sponge to stand for a few minutes and then rinse the sponge in hot water. If there are any trace of soap left in the sponge, give a further rinse in vinegar water.
5. To sterilize a sponge—Soak a cleaned sponge in a bowl of hot water containing salt, vinegar or bicarb; or essential oils such tea tree, thyme, cloves, grapefruit seed extract, etc. Then rinse the sponge.
6. Allow the sponge to air dry after use.
7. Never wring a sponge, but squeeze it instead and also never place the sponge in scalding or boiling water or somewhere really hot like on a radiator or heater.
8. Keep your sponge away from pets!

Choosing a Sponge

Here is a video to help you select the best sponge for face care and for bathing / showering.


A hardhead sponge

Strange Facts about Sea Sponges

  • Genetically sponges are 70% related to humans
  • Many scientists believe that all animal life evolved from sponges
  • There are over 5000 different species of sponge and 7 species are commercially useful
  • Although sponges have the genes for organs they do not possess, such as a heart, mouth, eyes, they are not switched on
  • Sponges have amazing powers of regeneration and reorganization. Apparently you can take two whole living individual sponges, pass them through a silk mesh i.e. make them very small, place them back in sea water and they will reform into the two individual sponges again. Please don’t try this at home!
  • Although sponges appear to be rooted to the spot, some of them can move slowly to find a better habitat. As they move across uneven surfaces they can reorient their own internal body structure to suit their new habitat.
  • People have always debated whether sponges are plant, animal or something in between. Since 1765 they have been classified as an animal. Unlike most other animals, they have no detectable sense organs neither do they have a nervous system.
A Wet Soft Honeycomb Sponge, most luxurious of all the sponges

A Wet Soft Honeycomb Sponge, most luxurious of all the sponges. This photo shows the upper surface of the sponge. The adjacent photograph shows the side of the same sponge when it is dry.






Please Note sponges are measured when they are wet and fully expanded. So if the sponge you receive seems a tiny bit smaller when you receive it, after the first time it is wetted, it will reach its true size.

Also I have not been able to fit all of the sponges on the drop down menu, so if you would like a sea grass, hardhead or macho fina sponge could you call us on 0800 023 5008 or email please?

Sponge Comparison


Type Size in inches and Price
Description Uses
Fina Silk, Fina Silk, Fine Silk
spongia officinalis
1+ inches
Soft body texture. Silky soft surface. Durable, very evenly formed sponge, springy, tiny pores, absorbent. These tiny sponges, generally have a flat profile. Make up removal and application. Detail craft work. Detail cleaning.Three sponges in a packet

Three Small Silk Fina Sponges

Three Small Silk Fina Sponges

Silk Fina 2+ inches
As above, but more hard wearing. Make up removal and application. Detail craft work. Detail cleaning. Baby Bath.Two sponges in each packet
Silk Fina 2.5-3 inches
As above, but more hard wearing and with a firmer body texture. Baby Bath, Face Care, Cleaning.One per pack.
 Silk Fina  4+inches
A firmer body texture. As the Silk Fina Sponge grows, the surface becomes more furrowed. Due to the fine mesh, they need good drying conditions. Bathing. Showering, Baby Bath, Face Washing. Cleaning. Washing Up.
Silk Fina  5+inches
The surface is often  furrowed with a firm body texture. Still with a silky smooth surface.  Bathing, Showering, Cleaning.

Silk Fina, Medium to Large

Silk Fina, Medium to Large

Silk Fina 6+ inches £25.00 Mostly furrowed.  Bathing, Showering, Cleaning.
Silk Fina  7+
 The surface is more furrowed. These are very attractive sponges. Bathing, Showering, Cleaning.
The larger sizes need optimal drying conditions.
Silk Fina 8+ inches £40.00
Silk Fina 9+ inches £50.00 These are generally ‘bulky’.
Hardhead Sponge
Spongia officinalis dura
Medium body texture. Firm exfoliating surface. Slightly open structure. Rounded with very small cut mark, several osculum up to 1cm. Very attractive natural yellowish-brown. Exfoliating, washing, dry skin massage, bath, showering.

Hardhead Sponge

Hardhead Sponge

Hardhead 4+ inches
 As above.  When exfoliating, hold this species of sponge with two hands.
Hardhead 5+inches
 As above.
Sea Wool, also known as Sheepswool Sponge
Hyppospongia lachne
3+ inches
Very soft body texture. Very soft surface texture. Feels like sheep fleece. Extremely absorbent. Easy to control water absorption and release. i.e. non-drippy. This size can be used with one hand. The larger sizes require two hands. Delicate –  quite low tear resistance. Great for face washing and strip washing and baby care.Great for detail cleaning around fittings, mouldings etc because you can exactly control the moisture level.Also used by potters, craftspeople and artists such as water colour painters.

Sea Wool Sponge

Sea Wool Sponge

Sea Wool 4+inches
 As above.  Ideal for applying soapnut liquid or seaweed extract  to the hair. Slower to dry than other sponges, so these sponges need good drying conditions. Squeeze gently.
Sea Wool 5+ inches£20.00  As above.  Squeeze gently. Very delicate.
Honeycomb Sponge, Horse Sponge
Hyppospongia communis
3+ inches
A soft and flexible body structure. Attractive, and most commonly associated with luxury bathing. From the side they look like Swiss cheese. These sponges are the easiest to wash and air dry. Baby care, face washing. These sponges are the easiest to wash and air dry.

A Honeycomb Sponge

A Honeycomb Sponge

Honeycomb 4+ inches
At this size, these sponges are stronger than they look. They are the archetypal bath sponge. Baby care, face washing. In nature these sponges can grow very large (too large to use), so
Honeycomb 5+ inches
Soft but remarkably durable. Bath, shower, spa, large pets, housework, car washing, windows. Most of the medium and large honeycomb sponges have been cut into practical sizes. The cutting reveals the strong honeycomb structure and retains a ‘cleaning surface.’
Honeycomb 6+ inches
 My favourite bath and shower sponge! Bath, shower, spas, large pets, housework, car washing, windows.
Honeycomb 7+ inches
Needs two hands to squeeze and wring.
Honeycomb 8-9+ inches
Decorative, but still usuable with two hands.
Honeycomb  The Giant Honeycomb
Honeycomb 10-12 inches
Macho Fina


4-4.5 inches £12.00 A firm body structure. A good exfoliating surface. Very even texture, absorbent, fine fibrous mesh, generally smooth but some with regularly spaces tufts and ridges. Due to the fine mesh, needs good drying conditions.  Exfoliating, Showering, Bathing, Pet Care. Too harsh for face care.

Macho Fina

Macho Fina

Macho Fina 5+ inches £15.00 Often more tufted and ridged. Can split if rubbed too hard without whole hand support, so a the Nettle and Copper Exfoliating glove could be a better option for vigorous exfoliation.
Macho Fina 6+ inches £20.00 Often more tufts and ridges, very attractive. Again resist the temptation to use it too vigorously or it will split. Would you be better off with a Nettle and Copper exfoliating glove?  You will need to be quite strong to squeeze this sponge.
Sea Grass,
Spongia gramminea
4 inches £5.00 Medium body texture. A fairy course and irregular ‘wild’ somewhat scruffy surface texture. A large and open fibrous mesh, some with protruding filaments. Sea grass sponges are not the least absorbent of sponges, but they are fast drying. Neither is this sponge type the most durable.   Found at 2-5m depth. For general purpose use, but not strong.

A Photo of a Sea Grass Sponge

A Sea Grass Sponge

Sea Grass 5 inches
 Elelphant Ear  7-9 inches
 A ruffled surface, strong, easy to dry. A flat convex disc like body.  Bathing, showering, massage.

Elephant Ear Sponges in a wooden bowl

Elephant Ear Sponges

Elephant Ear 11-12 inches
 A flat dome shaped structure. A cut mark  slit in the center. Crafts (i.e.padding for helmets and armour). Can be easily cut into different sizes.

Historical and Other Odd Uses for Sea Sponges

  • Helmets and armour were padded with natural sea sponge (elephant ear).
  • Cleaned and damped sponges have been used by menstruating women to capture their flow (silk fina 3+). I have not found these practical myself and prefer the Femmecup.
  • Sponges were also used to administer spermicidal medicines for contraception.
  • Surgeons used sponges to absorb blood and body fluid.
  • The Romans used ‘spongia’ – sponge on a stick, instead of toilet paper. They were cleaned in red wine vinegar.
  • Homeopaths make preparations from toasted sea sponge.
  • Scientists are trying to create new medicines from sponges.
  • Sponges are used in bushcraft to collect water and moisture from stone hollows, stems of plants etc.

Additional information

Type and Size in Inches

Fine Silk 1+ (x 3), Fine Silk 2+ (x 2), Fine Silk 3 +, Fine Silk 4+, Fine Silk 5+, Fine Silk 6+, Fine Silk 7+, Fine Silk 8+, Fine Silk 9+, Honeycomb 3+, Honeycomb 4+, Honeycomb 5+, Honeycomb 6+, Honeycomb 7+, Honeycomb 8- 9+, Honeycomb 10-12, Elephant Ear 7-9, Elephant Ear 11-12, Sea Wool 3+, Sea Wool 4+, Sea Wool 5+, Macho Fina 4+, Macho Fina 5+, Sea Grass 4+, Sea Grass 5+, Hardhead 3-4, Hardhead 5+, Honeycomb 15

6 reviews for Sponges, natural unbleached sea sponges

  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    Marj Ashton (verified owner)

    If you thought a sponge was just a sponge, buy one of these. They are “amazing” to look at to feel and to bath with, sheer luxury.

  2. Rated 5 out of 5

    J Hearn (verified owner)

    I’ve been searching for fina silk sponges that are actually SOFT (was sent some by another company that were hard and scratchy) but these silk fina sponges from Natural Spa Supplies are unbelievably soft and absolutely perfect for applying foundation etc. Will definitely be buying again.

  3. Rated 5 out of 5


    These are really wonderful. I use the small ones for washing my face (with hemp soap) and they are so gentle, yet exfoliate the skin to leave it feeling gently invigorated. I use the larger ones for use in the shower or bath over the whole body and they are really great as it is like massaging your body as they are gentle but stimulating. Very good for promoting good circulation and lymph drainage. They are also so easy as they air dry. They last really well and once you use these, you will never want to use anything else. Highly recommend.

  4. Rated 5 out of 5

    Nicki Harker (verified owner)

    A wonderful find, these sponges are truly soft and there is a sponge for every need.
    My 7 month year old grandson loves his !
    All the natural sponges I have tried over the years I have never had any a good as these.
    The Natural Spa Supplies, hugely helpful and orders arrive quickly with a personal touch.

  5. Rated 5 out of 5

    Nadezhda Zhukova (verified owner)

    Ordered a few months ago Honeycomb 7+. When the sponge arrived, for a whole week I couldn’t wait to jump in the shower, because using my new sponge was a super exiting treat! Now, after a few months of using it. Sponge is looking beautiful and like new still. Very happy and would highly recommend to everyone 🙂

  6. Rated 5 out of 5

    Suzie (verified owner)

    Well, these sponges are just amazing! I love that they are all natural and ethically sourced too. I use the small sponges to apply the orange flower water after I’ve cleansed my face. I will definitely purchase more.

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