Just as I have learned and experimented with home-made deodorant, I have perfected two toothpaste recipes that fight bad breath and whiten the teeth.
Through university, one thing that I really disliked was spending so much money on natural toothpaste options and throwing away plastic tubes month after month. I later read some interesting facts about the toothpaste market, that was valued at 23.36 billion € in 2018 and is expected to increase for around 6% till 2024. Can you imagine?? If the toothpaste market is so high, I can’t imagine what the value of feminine hygiene products is..
What I have come up with after discovering the down sides of the toothpaste industry, I have started making my own toothpaste. It certainly required some “used to” but eventually I have noticed some nice improvements going on with my teeth. I, here, present these two recipes that you can either do in small quantities so that you try both, or first try one and later the other.
The FIRST RECIPE is oil based. You will need:
- 2 tbs coconut oil
- 1/2 ts bentonite or white clay
- 1/2 ts diatomeaceous earth (or again bentonite clay if you do not have the former)
- 1 tbs soda bicarbonate or sea/himalaya salt
- 1 crushed active charcoal pill or 1/4 ts powdered active charcoal (optional)
- 5 – 10 drops of peppermint/cloves/anice essential oil (optional)
- wooden or plastic spoon
- glass jar
Coconut oil has been used in Ayurveda for thousands of years, especially for oil pulling (swishing a tablespoon of oil in your mouth on an empty stomach for around 20 minutes to draw out the toxins), because it has antibacterial properties and also serves as a healthy fat base. Bentonite/white clay and diatomeaceous earth are high in minerals and so help remineralize your teeth with calcium and magnesium. In addition, they absorb the toxins, heavy metals and bacteria. Being versatile, soda bicarbonate helps eliminate the bad bacteria. Sometimes, however, it can be a bit too much for the gums, so feel free to use salt instead. Salt will help maintain the good bacteria within your mouth flora and kill the bad guys. Both of these substances are salts, actually, and have the ability to keep an alkaline environment. This means that they will create an inhospitable environment for most bad bacteria that usually live in a micro-environment that has a pH around 7. I personally always go for salt because I have more sensitive gums. Active charcoal has incredible cleaning and whitening properties. It is not good to put too much, however, because it can damage the outter tooth layer called enamel. I tend to put active charcoal into my tootpaste only every now and then, and in very low quantities. Essential oils are optional. For starters, I suggest you to use it because the home-made toothpaste has a much different taste, and the essential oils definitely help getting used to it. I like to use peppermint essential oil, but you can opt for the cloves or anice, if you fancy them more.
The SECOND RECIPE is water based and these are the ingredients you are going to need:
- 2 tbs bentonite clay
- 1 tbs salt (either himalaya or sea salt, or 1/2 tbs soda bicarbonate & 1/2 tbs salt)
- 1 tbs raw cacao powder
- distilled or boiled filtered water
- 5 – 10 drops essential oil (optional)
- wooden or plastic spoon
- glass jar
In addition to the properties of ingredients mentioned in the FIRST RECIPE, raw cacao powder contains theobromine, which is an alkaloid compound. It protects the enamel layer by preventing the formation of bacterial plaques and, therefore, cavities. It is basically a natural substitute of fluoride (which is an endocrine disruptor that can inhibit the proper functioning of the thyroid and kidneys). Plus the cacao gives your toothpaste such a pleasant smell that almost makes you eat it, and hence, you needn’t add any essential oils.
TIPS & TRICKS: Since the toothpaste does not contain any foaming agents, it will not fill your mouth with white foam. Do not get intimidated by this – it is completely normal. // At the beginning, it might not taste good. This is because most toothpastes contain xylitol, a sweetener that makes your taste buds dance. // Use a WOODEN or PLASTIC SPOON because the clay/diatomeaceous earth tends to absorb heavy metals and so it can potentially contaminate your toothpaste, doing the opposite of what you want. // If you do not have coconut oil or do not want the oil base, you can either replace it with water, baring in mind that it will last less; or skip this ingredient. By doing so, you will have a powder in which you will have to dip the toothbrush. // For a fancier version of the toothpast, you can add some finely chopped dried herbs, such as sage or mint.
A big thank you goes to everyone who has supported me and who showed they care when we talked about more eco-friendly alternatives to do at home, for there is no better power than to be self-sustainable and aligned with Pachamama.