Maintaining good oral hygiene is essential for overall health, but it’s equally important to consider the impact of our dental routine on the environment. The average person uses 300 plastic toothbrushes in their lifetime, leading to billions of plastic sticks ending up in landfills each year. To combat this issue, sustainable toothbrushes have emerged as a solution to reduce plastic waste.

Sustainable toothbrushes are eco-friendly alternatives that are designed to minimize the environmental impact of traditional plastic toothbrushes. In this article, we will explore what sustainable toothbrushes and toothpastes are, and highlight three dental brands that offer these products. By making the switch to sustainable dental care, we can improve not only our oral health but also the health of our planet.

Biting Into The Best Bamboo Toothbrushes

1. Brush With Bamboo

Brush with Bamboo is known for its eco-friendly toothbrushes for adults and kids. The handles are made of sustainably-harvested wild-grown Moso Bamboo, which is not one of the 42 bamboo species pandas eat. The bristles are made of 100% castor bean oil, which is biobased and non-plastic. However, they break down more slowly than standard items in home compost, so the bristles should be removed using pliers before composting the handle. The toothbrushes are vegan, FDA registered, USDA Biobased, and Green America certified.

To recycle the toothbrushes, customers can use Terracycle, along with the aluminum staples. The packaging is an origami-folded cardboard box, which eliminates the need for tape. There is no inner wrapper, just a 100% paper box that is home compostable.

2. EcoRoots

EcoRoots offers a sustainable bamboo toothbrush with a 100% compostable bamboo toothbrush handle that’s anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and antimicrobial. The toothbrush bristles are made with soft nylon, but they’re BPA-free and non-toxic. They’re also infused with activated charcoal for whitening benefits. While that means this isn’t a plastic-free toothbrush option, customers can remove the bristles and recycle them through TerraCycle. Then toss the toothbrush without bristles in the compost.

The toothbrush sets are shipped plastic-free. EcoRoots is certified cruelty-free by Leaping Bunny and ships everything plastic-free in only recyclable/compostable materials. To date, the brand has donated almost $15,000 to Ocean Conservancy.

3. etee

Etee’s eco-friendly toothbrush is made of FSC-certified bamboo. Each minimalist toothbrush handle is indefinitely reusable, and customers only need to order replaceable heads, further minimizing waste. The water-based paint on the bamboo toothbrush handle protects it from water damage, so customers can use it for longer. While the bristles are made of castor bean oil, etee warns that they’re not yet biodegradable toothbrushes, but assures customers they are working on a solution. To compost the head, customers can use a pair of pliers to remove the staple keeping the bristles in place and compost the head sans bristles.

Etee is a Canadian zero waste brand that is aiming to remove as much plastic from everyday items as possible. They started with beeswax wraps and took flight from there. Aside from the beeswax used in their refill pods and wraps, everything they sell is vegan, cruelty-free, 100% natural, plastic-free, and made using renewable energy. Etee gives back to the Mississauga Food Project and various medical clinics serving those in need.

4. ZWS Essentials

ZWS Essentials offers a zero waste wooden toothbrush with castor bean oil bristles which is backyard compostable—bristles and all. The toothbrush is made with a sustainably sourced bamboo toothbrush handle and plastic-free castor bean oil bristles. The company claims that these are the only 100% biodegradable toothbrushes around. However, customers must use pliers to remove the metal staples holding the bristles in place, which they recommend collecting and recycling., the company behind ZWS Essentials, isn’t just one of the best zero waste online stores to find a collection of eco lifestyle brands. They also offer an in-house ZWS Essentials line of organic, compostable, and sustainably packaged items that cover anything else customers might need for their zero waste bathroom: razors, shampoo bars, hairbrushes, and much more. Each purchase not only minimizes harm due to the plastic-free packaging but also does a little good thanks to’s Climate Neutral certification and 1% for the Planet membership.

5. Georganics

Georganics offers bamboo toothbrushes as part of its Zero To Landfill scheme, which makes it easy for UK customers to responsibly dispose of frayed bristles. The toothbrush handles are made of Moso bamboo, which is biodegradable and compostable. The toothbrush bristles are made of BPA-free nylon, which is recyclable. The brand is committed to reducing waste and minimizing its carbon footprint.

Georganics is a UK-based company that offers a range of natural and sustainable oral care products. Their products are free from fluoride, SLS, and glycerin. They use only pure, organic, and food-grade ingredients. The brand is also vegan and cruelty-free.

6. The Humble Co.

The Humble Co. offers a range of eco-friendly toothbrushes made of bamboo. The tooth

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How We Found The Best Zero Waste Toothbrush Brands

When searching for the best zero waste toothbrush brands, the team considered several factors, including eco-friendliness, sustainability, materials, price, and durability. The team focused on toothbrushes that were made from sustainable materials, such as bamboo, and were BPA-free and non-toxic.

The team also looked for toothbrushes that were designed for a circular economy, meaning that they could be easily recycled or composted. Additionally, the team considered the handle design, as well as the packaging, to ensure that they were both eco-friendly and plastic-free.

After careful consideration, the team found that bamboo toothbrushes were the best sustainable toothbrush option currently available. Bamboo is a fast-growing, water-conservative plant that is both anti-fungal and antibacterial, making it an excellent material for toothbrushes. Bamboo toothbrushes are also 100% compostable, making them a great option for those looking to live a zero waste lifestyle.

While bamboo is currently the best option for sustainable toothbrushes, the team recognized that the industry is constantly evolving. Recycled and reusable aluminum handles paired with compostable toothbrush heads could further reduce waste. The team also recognized that finding a truly zero waste toothbrush would require addressing the issue of bristles, which are often made from non-compostable materials.

The Challenge Behind Zero Waste Toothbrush Bristles

When it comes to eco-friendly toothbrushes, the handle is not the only component that needs to be considered. The bristles are often a challenge in creating a fully compostable toothbrush. While most materials will eventually degrade, it can take hundreds of years, and not all biodegradable materials are compostable. This distinction can lead to confusion and greenwashing by some brands.

Boar bristle toothbrushes are the only truly compostable option, but the idea of brushing teeth with pig hair may not be appealing to everyone. Castor bean oil bristles are another option, but their biodegradability is still up in the air. While some brands claim their castor bean oil bristles are home compostable, others recommend recycling them instead. Miswak sticks, a traditional oral care tool, are also an option and have been found to be effective in studies.

Final Thoughts On Sustainable Toothbrushes

While zero waste toothbrushes are not truly zero waste, they are a step in the right direction towards a more sustainable future. Bamboo toothbrushes are becoming more popular and some brands are working towards creating fully vegan and compostable toothbrushes.

To make toothbrushes more sustainable, individuals can try reusing their old toothbrushes for zero waste cleaning before properly disposing of them. It is also important to properly recycle or dispose of the bristles to avoid contributing to landfill waste.

By choosing eco-friendly toothbrush options and spreading awareness about sustainable oral care practices, individuals can make a positive impact on the health of the planet.