Confession time: I use black toothpaste.
And the totally counterintuitive reason I do it? To whiten my teeth.
I want a bright smile, but I’m not a fan of harsh bleaches.
Brushing with activated charcoal has given me the results I wanted, without the tooth sensitivity, cost, or toxic ingredients offered by other tooth whitening methods.
My favorite activated charcoal toothpaste is the Brilliant Black Toothpaste from Terra & Co. It has clean ingredients and can start making teeth whiter after the first use.
Why Activated Charcoal?
Using something as dark as activated charcoal seems an unlikely tool for teeth whitening. But it works.
Activated charcoal is highly adsorbent and has a variety of uses such as counteracting the effects of poison. I always have a bottle on hand, even when I travel, in case of accidental food poisoning.
A few years ago, I began brushing my teeth with an activated charcoal capsule, about once a week. It quickly whitened my teeth and made my entire mouth feel clean and healthy. I also used it to remove the stains on my six year old daughter’s teeth after she completed a cycle of antibiotics. But opening up these little capsules isn’t exactly user-friendly (see The Mess Factor below), so finding the Brilliant Black Toothpaste from Terra & Co. was a godsend.
I have bonding on a few teeth, and I was initially concerned that the charcoal might whiten the bonding substance and natural tooth differently, leading to two distinctly different colors in my smile. Yuck. I didn’t want that to happen. Thankfully, all parts of my teeth, natural and otherwise, have brightened up evenly.
This is my natural alternative to Crest White Strips.
Inside the Ingredients
This toothpaste goes beyond avoiding the undesirable ingredients (SLS, triclosan, etc) that are often present in mainstream toothpastes. This Brilliant Black Toothpaste is full of good-for-you ingredients, right down to the sweetener.
Ingredients: purified water, diatomaceous earth, baking soda, xylitol, coconut oil, activated carbon, peppermint oil, xanthan gum, tea tree oil.
|Extremely Safe||Reasonably Safe||Proceed with Caution||Insufficient Data|
Beyond the charcoal (listed as activated carbon in the ingredient profile), coconut oil is one of my favorite alternative oral hygiene products. I practice oil pulling, either with coconut oil or sesame oil, and I appreciate a toothpaste that incorporates oil in this thoughtful way. Although this toothpaste will never replace my oil pulling practice—it merely enhances it—its presence is indicative of the high quality of ingredients in this toothpaste.
The Mess Factor
I used to open up charcoal capsules to brush my teeth with, but I learned the hard way that this can make a huge mess (even from one little capsule!) and should only be done in the shower.
This Brilliant Black Toothpaste makes it easy, and not at all messy, to brush my teeth with activated charcoal. No more blackened shower grout or stained towels.
Special Toothbrush Included
Each tube of Terra & Co. Brilliant Black Toothpaste comes with a soft toothbrush with pretty black bristles. Not only does the color of the polyester bristles hide any residual charcoal, the bristles also have rounded ends to help protect gums and tooth enamel.
The toothbrush comes in a reusable case that’s perfect for traveling.
But How Does It Taste?
Just because it looks weird doesn’t mean it tastes strange.
The Brilliant Black Toothpaste tastes fresh, minty and a tad sweet. I like it.
A Word of Caution
I’ve been unable to find definitive information about the long-term effects of activated charcoal on tooth enamel. There don’t appear to be long-term, independent studies.
Be sure to check with your dentist if you have any concerns regarding brushing your teeth with activated charcoal.
Where to Purchase
The Brilliant Black Toothpaste is $29.99 for a 4oz tube. Purchase it here. Toothbrush included.
*This post is not sponsored. All opinions are my own.
**Products get makeovers too. Be sure to check if this product has been recently re-formulated before using it yourself.1