Sustainability

Ditch The Plastic, Here’s Why You Should Switch To Bamboo Toothbrushes ASAP

By Ioana Dragnef
2nd Nov 2020

A close-up shot of three bamboo toothbrush heads.

It’s not news that conventional toothbrushes are the worst; they’re made of different types of plastics that cannot be recycled, take over 400 years to decompose (yep, you read that right) and just end up in our oceans, killing our precious marine life.

Luckily there are so many alternatives to conventional toothbrushes, with our fave being the humble bamboo toothbrush. Antibacterial, biodegradable and recyclable, here’s why you should switch to bamboo toothbrushes ASAP.

They’re Sustainable

Bamboo is a robust and flexible plant that grows very quickly and doesn’t require any pesticides when harvested because of its antibacterial properties. It’s natural enough to fully biodegrade in a landfill and can easily be recycled into other products, which makes it the perfect alternative to plastic toothbrushes.

They’re More Hygienic Than A Conventional Toothbrush

Bamboo toothbrushes are just as comfortable and as effective as conventional toothbrushes and are even more hygienic. 

Bamboo is antimicrobial, which means that your toothbrush handle is less likely to harbour harmful bacteria that could spread to the rest of your toothbrush. Unfortunately we can’t say the same about plastic toothbrushes. Yuck.

A shot of four bamboo toothbrushes in a ceramic holder, alongside a serum bottle and a nail brush.

They’re Affordable And Easy To Buy

Okay, so bamboo toothbrushes are slightly more expensive than the hot pink $1 toothbrush you can get from the supermarket. But for a few dollars extra, not only are you doing your mouth a favour by avoiding plastic-dwelling bacteria but you’re also helping the environment.

Plus, you can get them virtually anywhere nowadays. Here are some of our favourites if you’re looking for some sustainable tooth-cleaning inspiration:

  • This Australian-made bamboo toothbrush is 100% biodegradable, with recyclable bristles made from 62% castor oil and 38% plastic and also comes in medium.

  • This bamboo toothbrush is super affordable and also comes in soft and medium varieties.

  • If you want to be reminded of all the turtles you’re saving by using a bamboo toothbrush, this bamboo toothbrush has a cool little turtle decal on it; we love it almost as much as we love turtles.

  • This bamboo toothbrush has charcoal enhanced bristles that are more moisture proof and antibacterial than normal bristles to keep your mouth healthy and squeaky clean.

  • If you’re looking for value, you can’t go wrong with this 12-pack of bamboo toothbrushes that’ll last you a long while and won’t cost the planet.

They're Easy To Recycle

While some bamboo toothbrushes are made with recyclable bristles, often most of them will be made from nylon, which is not recyclable or biodegradable.

So to properly dispose of your bamboo toothbrush, you’ll want to separate the bristles from the handle (you can use pliers or something similar), then put them in a non-recyclable waste bin.

After removing the bristles you can place the bamboo in a compost bin or organic container and it will decompose after a few months. That's it! Well done.

Looking to become more sustainable? Here’s the lowdown on palm oil.

Image credit: Karolina Grabowska

Editor's note: Urban List editors independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. Urban List has affiliate partnerships, so we get revenue from your purchase.

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