Once a plastic brush reaches the end of its lifespan, it won't break down for hundreds of years. Collectively resulting in unnecessary waste sent to landfills or ending up in our oceans. Wood brushes, however, decompose naturally, returning to the environment without leaving a lasting impact.
Our bamboo dish brushes and other wood products are an excellent alternative to plastic brushes and other non-biodegradable materials that contribute to environmental pollution. If you have recently switched to our bamboo or wood dish brushes, you may be wondering how to take care of them to keep them in top shape so they last longer. Here are some tips on how to care for your bamboo dish brushes and other wood products like cutting boards, wood utensils, soap dishes, and more.
1. A Proper Drying Routine is Key
After using a bamboo brush, always hang it up to dry, place it on a Corner Rack (image on right), on a Swedish Dishcloth, or a dry towel. This simple act ensures that the bristles are positioned in a way that allows water to drain away effectively. Remember, moisture is the enemy when it comes to maintaining wood, and this little step can make a world of difference.
For our modular brushes, we recommend occasionally unscrewing and allowing the individual portions to completely dry out.
2. Avoid Soaking Them
Never leave brushes submerged in water. Prolonged immersion can be tough on bamboo and wood, causing it to crack or warp. Not to mention, weaken its hold on the natural bristles causing premature fall out.
3. Bamboo’s Natural Defense
Fun fact: Bamboo is naturally antimicrobial. This means it fights off unwanted germs all by itself. But, if you feel your brush needs an extra cleaning boost, a little vinegar or hydrogen peroxide will do the trick. Soak only in the bristles to gently clean them and ward off smells or bacteria.
4. How to Clean the Handles. Bamboo dish brushes and products can also be cleaned regularly to prevent the buildup of dirt and bacteria. Use mild soap and warm water to give them a sufficient clean (no need to soak), and rinse with clean water. Avoid using any harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners that can damage the bamboo. DO NOT put them in the dishwasher or boiling water.
4. Celebrate the Aging Process
As your bamboo brush ages, it will undergo a transformation, adopting a beautiful patina. Cracking is also perfectly normal for wood brushes. It is a natural sign of aging caused by exposure to water and will not adversely affect the performance of your brush. You can oil or wax your brushes to reduce the potential of cracking.
What is Patina?
Wood patina is the change in appearance that occurs in wood over time due to natural aging, exposure to light, air, and moisture. It is a natural process that creates a unique, aged look that many people find appealing. Wood that is exposed to moisture may darken and develop a weathered look. This darker color is completely natural and often mistaken for mold on wood or bamboo dish brushes.
5. When to Renew Your Brush
Bamboo dish brushes and products are durable and long-lasting, but they will eventually wear out with regular use. When you notice signs of wear and tear, such as falling out bristles or flattened, tired bristles, it's time to replace them with a new one. Crush + compost the old one or bury in your garden. With the right care, the head of your bamboo or wood brush should last 3-6 months. But many users (as myself) find that with some love and attention, they last even longer.
6. Wax or Oil Them Occasionally. Bamboo can dry out and crack over time if not properly maintained. To prevent this, we recommend using a wood wax or wood oil which provides a natural barrier to wooden brushes, hairbrushes, cutting boards, wooden soap dishes, etc. It absorbs into the wood to seal the surface keeping moisture out and elongating the life of your wood or bamboo products. Mineral oil, carnauba wax, or coconut oil are great options for this.
How to Replace the Head of our Modular + Long Handle Kitchen Brush:
If you own the long-handled sisal kitchen brush and/or modular brushes, the good news is that you can replace only its bristle head. Heads last about 6 months, and handles last 1-2 years....depending on how you use and care for it...
Modular Cleaning Brushes - It is SO easy to replace the bristle head. Simply twist off the old, tired bristle head and compost it. Twist on a new refill head, making sure it is fully secure before use. Again, we also recommend occasionally untwisting the head and allowing the inner portion to dry out fully for longevity.
Long-handled sisal kitchen brush - Pinch the wires close to the head (pliers may be needed if its your first time), slide down the small circular metal clasp to free the old brush head. Afterward, slide the new head on. The groove should meet the wires, then you can slide the metal clasp back up, securing it into place. How to Video HERE.
In conclusion, caring for your bamboo dish brushes and products is simple and straightforward. Keep them dry, clean them regularly, avoid soaking them, wax or oil them occasionally, and replace them when necessary. By following these tips, you can ensure that your bamboo dish brushes and wooden products last for a long time and continue to be a sustainable and eco-friendly choice for your home. With the right care, you're not just saving the planet but also ensuring value for your money. Happy cleaning!