Lately I’ve been on the lookout for alternatives to commercial toothpaste, for a lot of reasons. For one, I have a high sensitivity to minty/”fresh” flavors and it’s really difficult to find non-minty toothpaste in the grocery store. I also have some concerns about my level of fluoride intake, since it’s added to my local tapwater supply already. And between you and me, I never feel like my teeth are very clean after brushing them with toothpaste. So I decided to experiment with some more “outside the box” options.
First, on the recommendation of Chicky Bandita, I placed an order for some of Rose of Sharon Acres’ Tooth Chips. They come in many different flavors,including anise and orange cinnamon (the latter being my favorite!) and offer a couple different sample pack options, so it was really easy for me to give them a trial run.
The tooth chips are basically little shavings of a soap that’s specially made for teeth. You just put one piece on your moistened toothbrush, and start brushing away. The idea of literally washing your mouth out with soap takes a little getting used to, but although you can tell that the soap is soap, it doesn’t taste bad like putting a bar of Dove in your mouth, or something–just a little odd. The chips immediately lather up as soon as you put brush to tooth, but it’s not the thick foam you get from toothpaste. It’s just like regular soap lather. I liked that because I hate feeling like I’m drooling while I’m brushing. The tooth chips made me feel very fresh and clean. When you’re done brushing, you’re supposed to rinse three times, which felt like just the right amount for me!
After I ordered the chips, I thought I’d do a search and see what else Etsy had to offer in their vein. The other item I found that looked really interesting was Bloodroot’s Toothpowders. I chose a (very affordable and generously-sized!) sample amount of the ginger toothpowder.
The tooth powder is, literally, a powder, that’s comprised of various herbs plus baking soda. You wet your toothbrush, sort of dunk it in the powder, andget to work. When I first tried brushing with it I was a little surprised by the taste. I think I was expecting an unsweetened herbal powder to taste like a ginger snap cookie or something, which was my problem, not the product’s. It actually tasted quite good. I was totally shocked at how fast my teeth got clean–they felt squeaky before I’d barely begun to brush! At first I found the texture of ground-up herbs to be a bit odd, but I quickly adjusted. It was also a little weird to see my mouth full of greenish-brown foam, but everything washed away easily when I was done, and the results certainly didn’t lie. This stuff works great!
I liked the both of these so much, I may have to order full-sized amounts of each, and then alternate between them based on my day’s scenario. If I’m gonna be snuggling with the boyfriend, I’d rather have my breath smell like ginger than faintly of soap, but if I’m getting ready to go out and I’m wearing a light-colored shirt, I’d rather brush with white lather over earthtones, just in case I make a mess
These are both great products and I encourage you to try them out if you’re looking for a better option than regular toothpaste, or even if you’re just curious or adventurous. These are also awesome examples of the neato things you discover when you choose to buy handmade!