eco toothbrush
Research report
29 March 2019

Eco toothbrushes

“Eco” toothbrushes can clean but they may not be as green as they claim.

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Andrew R.
13 Apr 2019
Another brand

There is also Go Bamboo toothburshes with a bamboo handle. On the cardboard packaging it sattes biodegradable handle, made from "sustainable bamboo". Designed in Gisborne, made in China, about $3 at New World.

It works well as a toothbrush, with soft bristles (much softer than a carbon infused model), as the dental hygienist commented at my last visit.

Susan S.
30 Mar 2019
Life cycle clarity

Thanks for the information about alternate toothbrush options. Something that you haven't described, is the whole process from manufacture to recycling. It's not just about whether or not the toothbrush has any residual value. It's about the processes involved in manufacturing the range available and the processes involved in collecting and recycling them. Some products actually use a lot of resources to be manufactured in the first place.

Peter L.
12 May 2019
I Agree

The environmental impact of disposal at the end of life is just one small part of the story.

Leonie W.
30 Mar 2019
Bamboo toothbrush

I bought a Mouthfresh bamboo toothbrush, used it for a few days, it made my gums sore. Kept it up for another couple of days, but no change. Went back to my electric and normal plastic one - no more sore gums. Would not recommend - but it may be that my mouth doesn't like bamboo!!

Previous member
30 Mar 2019
Confusion profusion

It’s hard to make good “eco” decisions. We do our best and that includes buying bamboo toothbrushes. We’d love to find one with plant based bristles but there don’t seem to be any available. In the meantime, it would be helpful if you could make it clear for everyone that a bamboo handle is infinitely better than a plastic handle. Even a bamboo handle that ends up in landfill is better than its plastic equivalent. That’s not obvious from your article.

Mark G.
30 Mar 2019
Hmm, maybe

I’d be uncomfortable saying bamboo is automatically infinitely better than plastic. You’d need a detailed life cycle analysis to compare. If you’re sending them from Europe you may actually be loosing vs a plastic made closer to home.

Peter L.
12 May 2019
It's not so simple

I don't think you can really make that claim unless you know the whole life story of each product from raw material to end of life.
For example, the environmental costs of raw material production, manufacturing, packaging, transporting, and use of a product may far outweigh environmental benefits at disposal. We will not begin to solve the world's environmental problems until we start to look at the impacts of the products and services we use from beginning to end, rather than just focusing on one factor, such as end of life disposal.