Homemade Toothpaste

Homemade Toothpaste

Butter Believer posted a status on Facebook the other day that read like this:

“Husband wants a “normal” toothpaste, but I refuse to get that nasty stuff with fluoride, triclosan, and a hundred other toxic chemicals in it. But all the “natural” toothpastes contain glycerin, which coats teeth and prevents minerals from reaching them.

Anyone know of a natural, glycerin-free, semi-normal toothpaste?”

It’s not like I immediately threw out all of our toothpaste. But I was curious to try to make my own. Frank says his mom uses just baking soda sometimes, so I know at least ONE family member that won’t shun me for this if it sticks! Hahaha!

We currently use Jason’s brand toothpaste. The only ingredient that really bothers me is carrageenan, which seems harmless enough since it originates from seaweed, but then you find out that it has been shown to cause cancer and rats, and well….? What am I supposed to do with that information? Carrageenan is typically used as a thickener and emulsifier in ice cream, yogurt, cottage cheese and other processed food products, including soy milk.

Cornucopia.org lists some common products with carrageenan in them—none of which we eat, so it’s not something I’m super worried about getting in my toothpaste, which I spit out anyway.


Jason’s Sea Fresh toothpaste lists the following Ingredients: Calcium Carbonate, Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Mentha Viridis (Spearmint) Leaf Oil, Carrageenan, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice* , Aphanizomenon Flos-Aquae Powder, Bambusa Arundinacea Stem Powder, Carum Petroselinum (Parsley) Extract , Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed Extract, Perilla Ocymoides Seed Extract, Stevia, Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract, Silica, Sodium Bicarbonate
*Certifed Organic Ingredient

Okay, so besides Gylcerin and Carrageenan, the rest is okay right? Even so, my brain wouldn’t leave me alone until I at least TRIED a make-at-home option. So here’s what happened tonight.

I took a shot glass (—that never gets used, by the way. I currently have another shot glass holding a blend of coconut oil and Purification oil, which I use for deodorant sometimes.) Anyway, I took a shot glass and dumped a tablespoon of baking soda in it. Filled the rest of the glass up with coconut oil—just enough to cover the baking soda—and then added some Peppermint Essential Oil. TA DA. That’s it. Stirred it around a little, dipped my toothbrush in, and brushed away!

…Gosh. I mean, I know it’s SODIUM bicarbonate, but I guess I didn’t expect it to taste so…salty? Some people add stevia to their toothpaste and there is stevia in Jason’s brand. Maybe that’s the key to making this work. We shall see.

I do think it’s worth mentioning that my teeth felt pretty awesome after brushing though. Really slick and clean. Frank tried it, too, and immediately after brushing said, “Wow! My teeth feel so clean! Does that mean we’re switching now?” Hahaha. He said the mild salty taste didn’t bother him and that he could do without the stevia. I don’t know about me though! Might just have to get some!

One thing to note about brushing with baking soda is that—if used too much—it can alter your mouth’s pH to be too alkaline, and you won’t be able to kill certain bacteria. One way to tell is if you experience gum sensitivity or bleeding. In order to keep our pH at a healthy balance, Frank and I have decided to switch off every two or three days to oil pulling with coconut oil. Oh! And another added benefit of using essential oil of peppermint is that it’s supposed to be naturally whitening. Can’t go wrong with that!

So, have you looked at what’s in your toothpaste lately? Ten bucks says it contains sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate, a common poison found in most shampoos and liquid soaps—anything that foams. If you’ve never heard of SLS, perhaps it’s time you did some digging—for your health. You might be surprised.

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Comments

  1. Minnie says

    Hi Courtney

    Loving your blog and will definitely be coming back – my dad is a scientist and knows a lot of things about a lot of things and ever since I can remember, back in those days when soda bicarbonate was added to commercial toothpaste (and still is in some cases), he would say to me how harmful soda bicarbonate is to our teeth. He’s coming up to a retirement age and actually did some experiments on how teeth behave. With soda bicarbonate whilst it may feel like your teeth are clean and fresh, there is damage being done due to the abrasive effect of SB. So effectively what it’s doing is slowly getting rid of the protective layer of your teeth (enamel) and once enamel is lost, it is gone forever, so please be very careful. What dad actually found was that whilst using toothpaste is fine, we should brush are teeth for 2 minutes afterwards without any toothpaste, just the toothbrush itself and soft toothbrush at that. His specialty is electron microscopy and you can really tell how teeth are getting damaged with SB and how different brushing techniques affect your teeth and gum health.

    Minnie

  2. says

    Oh my goodness the most unnatural food i have seen lately is boxed angel food cake! The top ingredient next to sugar was SLS! Really? Soap. I can’t believe that was my favorite cake before I knew better! No wonder I have such a sensitive tummy now:/

  3. says

    We use the Kids Spry toothpaste for or LO. It’s glycerine free and uses xylitol. I don’t mind the taste and neither does she. I’ve thought about switching to the adult Spry toothpaste for SO and I, but I still have to check out the ingredients on that.

  4. Heather says

    Okay, I just tried your recipe but I cut the baking soda down to two tsp from 1 TBSP. I also added 3 drops of liquid stevia. It tasted… Not bad! And my teeth did look and feel really clean. If I can keep it up I wonder if it will lighten my teeth?? My past addiction to Diet Coke has taken a toll and they are quite dark. :( Lesson learned.

    • mrspolivka says

      Frank and I eat so much turmeric that I think my teeth are yellower! It could just be my imagination, but brushing with baking soda will make me feel better about it, I think!

  5. says

    You just lost ten bucks! I cut out crappy toothpaste a while back. But I do want to make the transition to homemade. What about some xylitol for sweetener? I know not everyone is comfortable with xylitol since it isn’t technically natural, but I know that it is helpful for cavity prevention. I found you via Butter Believer, by the way. :)

    • mrspolivka says

      Why—because I switched from Jason’s? Haha. If that’s what you mean, that tube was TECHNICALLY only $3.69 because I got it on sale! Heeheehee. I read somewhere that it takes 24 brushing sessions to get the coating of glycerin off your teeth. Only a month to go before my teeth can naturally heal themselves! :) I’ve tried xylitol and didn’t like the taste much. I’m not much for stevia either to be honest, but I think I might give it another go soon!

    • says

      Why—because I switched from Jason’s? Haha. If that’s what you mean, that
      tube was TECHNICALLY only $3.69 because I got it on sale! Heeheehee. I
      read somewhere that it takes 24 brushing sessions to get the coating of
      glycerin off your teeth. Only a month to go before my teeth can
      naturally heal themselves!
      I’ve tried xylitol and didn’t like the taste much. I’m not much for
      stevia either to be honest, but I think I might give it another go soon!

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