The overlapping leaves of Erica strigilifolia grow in whorls of four, erect or spreading, about 4 mm long. The leaf-shape is oblong to wedge-shaped with acute tips that curve in. Leaves are covered in whitish hairs, particularly on the margins and in the narrow white slits of lower (outer) leaf surfaces where the margins rolled under do not quite meet.
The leaves are rough to the touch, sometimes described as bristly. The common name of scraper heath relates to this roughness. A strigilis (Latin) is a flesh-scraper, flesh-brush or strigil, used to stimulate the skin after a bath.
Most people feeling the need for such treatment will hopefully find an easier way than climbing a Cape mountain in search of a branch of this particular Erica (Vlok and Schutte-Vlok, 2015; Moriarty, 1997; Baker and Oliver, 1967; iNaturalist).