Cellulose sponge is by no means a new invention. First developed back in the 1940s, these sponges have been around in one form or another for decades. Now, though, they’re more popular, in-demand, and widely used than ever. That’s not least because they boast one major benefit over plastic-based alternatives: eco-friendliness.
At the same time, cellulose as a material remains incredibly versatile. Like the majority of sponges, cellulose versions are most commonly used for cleaning. As cleaning aids, they’re an effective means of tackling everything from dirty dishes to showers and tubs, floors, windows, and even vehicles in need of a spruce up.
This sponge is also celebrated for its excellent absorbency and long-lasting nature. It’s something that’s true even when used for tough cleaning jobs. Add in its eco-friendly credentials, and it’s no wonder that cellulose is now both so popular and in such widespread use.
For the most part, these sponges are just like non-cellulose alternatives. That includes plastic sponges and other products and materials manufactured and marketed for similar purposes. Crucially, cellulose sponge is hydrophilic. Hydrophilic materials attract water. As water and other liquids spread across their surfaces, contact is maximized by the random-celled nature of the material. The result is excellent absorbency. It’s the main reason cellulose sponges are most extensively employed in the cleaning products industry.
Elsewhere, the same random-celled nature of cellulose sponge means that it’s not dissimilar in appearance to natural sponges found in the ocean. However, all of this type of sponge is man-made. As a result, it’s more sustainable, doesn’t require harvesting from the sea, and comes in various colors. It’s also wet to the touch, making it easy to distinguish from other non-cellulose products.
Cellulose sponge primarily utilizes one or more forms of pulped, natural material in its composition. It’s most commonly made from wood fibers. So, while man-made, these sponges are much more eco-friendly than plastic alternatives.
Cellulose is the natural material that forms plant cells’ walls. Although this type of sponge is most commonly made from pulped wood fibers, manufacturers can also utilize other cellulose-based materials. Two examples are hemp and flax fibers.
Either way, all cellulose products start life, at least in part, as natural plant fibers. A clever manufacturing process then sees these fibers heated up, processed, rinsed, and cut to size to form an entirely new material.
Cellulose sponge is far superior to other non-naturally derived alternatives for numerous reasons. First and foremost, it’s biodegradable – something that cannot be said of plastic sponges. Accordingly, cellulose products are kinder to the planet.
They’re also the result of a much less toxic manufacturing process than their plastic counterparts which are heavily reliant on non-renewables such as oil and gas. Furthermore, while just as durable, when it eventually comes time to dispose of them, they break down quickly in landfills. Sadly, the same isn’t true of non-biodegradable, non-cellulose options.
It’s for this reason that it’s important to look for 100-percent cellulose-based sponge products. That’s as opposed to cheaper solutions which may also utilize one or more non-biodegradable synthetic materials, including plastic, polyester, and nylon.
Sadly, it’s extensively documented that plastic products are likely to take up to 500 years to break down in landfills. By contrast, cellulose alternatives begin to break down almost immediately under the right conditions.
Cellulose sponge isn’t just innovative, eco-friendly, and highly absorbent. That’s because the material itself is also surprisingly long-lasting. Despite readily breaking down in landfills, cellulose sponges are widely reported to last longer under normal use than their plastic look-alikes.
For example, under normal day-to-day usage, sponges intended for application in the home typically last for around six months. By contrast, plastic sponges may last as little as four weeks. Accordingly, cellulose products are potentially over 600 percent longer-lasting.
How long this sponge will last under other conditions depends on the circumstances. That said, based on the above comparison, it’s feasible to suggest that cellulose-based sponge products should remain usable for up to 6.5 times as long as those manufactured from plastic.
Cellulose sponge is readily available in countless shapes, sizes, and colors from Reilly Foam Corporation. Reilly Foam Corporation boasts over four decades of knowledge in creating custom solutions for foam and sponge products. Today, we have vast experience across the consumer, industrial, and medical sectors alike.
Furthermore, four separate U.S. locations ensure that customers’ needs are quickly and efficiently served via their nearest facility. Reilly Foam Corporation exclusively uses the latest technology and equipment to produce quality sponges that are among the finest on the market.
As such, customers can rest assured that they’re receiving the very best combination of expertise, technology, and fabrication when it comes to cellulose products. The same is true no matter how large or small a customer’s needs may be. Whatever your requirements, we’re ready to work with you to create a customized solution to your needs.
Contact Reilly Foam Corporation today to learn more about our facilities and abilities. That’s as we continue our commitment to delivering quality foam and sponge products at competitive prices, whatever the nature of a particular project.
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Our goal at Reilly Foam is to recycle anything and everything that is not fabricated so it can go on to have a second life elsewhere. 100% of our scrap materials are collected and bailed together. We then send our scrap materials out, either back to our suppliers or to other companies that will take them to use in recycled products!