Thanksgiving may be the biggest cooking day of the year, but it's the biggest washing up day of the year too! Between the roasting and the serving you've probably dirtied every pot, pan, and plate in your kitchen. Well, here's a look at our new favorite washing up tools, a set of bamboo accessories from Full Circle Home. Full Circle Home is a company that has a mission of creating cleaning products that are stylish as well as manufactured from renewable resources. (We like that combination!) The scrub brushes have bamboo handles, and the sponges are made from plant-based cellulose — as opposed to plastic sponges, which take about 1000 years to start breaking down in landfills. Their pot scrubbers are full biodegradeable, too. There's definitely care put into the design, and their products are sleek and functional.
They sent us a few items from their line of cleaning things to try out, and we've been mostly very impressed. And "we" here is for real; I use these products, but really it's my husband's endorsement that counts! He does the bulk of the dishes in our household (lucky, lucky me) and so he was eager to get his hands on these tools.
We were really impressed with them when they arrived; they are even more substantial and handsome than they look in these photos. The smooth handles are wonderfully ergonomic and nice to touch, and I love the way the palm-shaped brush fits in your hand, and the way it stands up on its end to dry.
The brushes are fabulous to use on dishes. We both feel like these brushes get things more clean than the scrubbies which, biodegradeable or not, don't feel quite as effective as the brush. The sponges are also great; I like the thoughtful design of the big sponges in particular, as they are curved so that they dry out better between washing sessions. Less moldy sponges — always good! I also really love the round vegetable brush, which is great for potatoes, mushrooms, carrots, and other fall vegetables.
We have noticed, though, that after a couple months of hard use the bamboo has weakened and faded a bit around the replaceable sponge. This may be our fault, for not letting it dry more thoroughly (plus, with the amount of cooking I do, we are really, really hard on our dish things) — but it still is more handsome than those ugly plastic sponge brushes. We also weren't too impressed with the bamboo towel they sent; it claims to be extra-absorbent but we felt it didn't absorb all that well, and also stayed extra-wet for an extra-long time.
Those are smallish quibbles, though, with this set of really beautiful things. My husband just keeps remarking on how beautiful they are and how nice they are to use. (Hey, anything to keep the dish-washer happy!) They are very reasonably priced, too, with every item priced under $10, and most much less than that.
Ultimately, these are a wonderful set of washing up things that we can highly recommend, especially the brushes and sponges. They would make great stocking stuffers, as well as nice hostess gifts! They are the sort of things you can feel good about buying, and about leaving out around your sink. Two (soapy) thumbs up!
• More information: Full Circle Home online
• Find their stuff: Retailers and online sources, including ChefTools, where the products range from about $3.89 for loofahs to $9.99 for the fillable-handle version of the sponge or brush.
Related: Kitchen Cleaning Products: What Are Your Favorites?
(Images: Faith Durand)