why this product

You can find one of these palm-fiber brushes in just about every Japanese home. The stiff yet flexible natural palm bristles resist deformation, even through the most rigorous use, and its strong construction makes it long lasting. Its round form fits comfortably in the hand, and its small size makes it easy to maneuver into hard-to-reach places. Natural lipids in the palm fiber help prevent mold and rot.

use & care

Wet before use for cleaning begrimed hands and nails or for scrubbing and exfoliating all over. Particularly effective for softening callused feet and other tough problem areas. Customize the softness of the bristles by buffing them with a pumice stone. Can withstand temperatures up to 90°C. After use, clean and dry thoroughly.

production & design

The palm fibers come from Sri Lanka palm plantations. A single palm tree produces 100 coconuts each year. To prepare the palm fiber, the coconut is harvested, cut into several pieces, then soaked in water for four to six weeks. At that point, a machine mechanically separates the husk from the fiber. Once washed, the fiber becomes stronger and tougher and is used to make sponges, mats, and ropes. Kamenoko Tawashi Co. produces hundreds of sponge brushes each day, and each one is checked to ensure it meets the company's standards. Shozaemon Nishio was always influenced by those closest to him. Since childhood, he had wanted to find a way to help his mother, a busy housewife. The first products that he experimented with were doormats made from palm fiber. He soon found that there were similar mats made elsewhere, but he hit on the idea of a unique product when he noticed one day that his wife was using a piece of the mat for household cleaning (at the turn of the 20th century, many people were still using tied rope to do their scrubbing). In 1907, at the age of 32, he founded the Kamenoko Tawashi Co. to make these palm-fiber brushes, which were sold for ¥3 each. The name of the company came from his son, who pointed out the resemblance of the brushes to the family's pet turtle: kamenoko means "young turtle"? and fortuitously, the turtle is considered good luck in Japan. Just as Kleenex has become the genericized trademark for tissues in the US, kamenoko has become synonymous with all such palm-fiber brushes in Japan.  

about the designer

Japanese Palm Scrub Brush

Kaufmann Mercantile from New York, NY
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Sturdy palm fiber bristles held in place with wire for a multitude of grooming needs, from scrubbing hands and nails to exfoliating all over. Made in Japan. (more info)

More Details

  • Technical Specifications:

    50 mm x 70 mm x 30 mm
    (2 inches x 2.8 inches x 1.2 inches)

    Palm fiber
    Metal wire

    Made in 

  • Dimensions: H 1.0 Inches x W 1.0 Inches x L 1.0 Inches
  • Product Code: V176000282172

Shipping & Returns

  • This item ships directly from Kaufmann Mercantile in Brooklyn, NY
  • Item is ready to ship in 1 - 3 Business Days. Delivery date will vary depending on your shipping address.
  • International orders may experience possible delays and take longer to arrive.
  • We accept complimentary returns within 14 days of receipt if the item is unused and in original condition.
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