Zero-waste toothpaste tablets; after 5 months and 5 different types… these are my favorites.
We’re all together on a journey toward becoming more sustainable in our daily lives. While zero-waste status may be the ultimate goal for many households, most of us aren’t there yet, and that’s okay: We can still make small changes that move us in the right direction. A perfect example of this? Zero-waste toothpaste tablets. Here’s what you need to know about this plastic-free toothpaste alternative.
The Trouble with Toothpaste Tubes
We all wake up in the morning and brush our teeth. Later, we repeat the process before bedtime each night. Brushing our teeth is so habitual that we hardly even think about it — let alone ponder the impact it may have on the planet. And yet if you’re using conventional toothpaste, you’re adding to the burden on the environment every time you toss a tube in the trash. Why? Because due to their small size, blend of aluminum and plastic material, and residual product, toothpaste tubes are almost impossible to recycle.
Even worse? Plastic is not biodegradable and can take up to 700 years to break down. Now consider just how many toothpaste tubes are destined for landfills every year: 1.5 billion of them. Meanwhile, eight million tons of plastic end up in the oceans over the same period of time. And then there are the paperboard boxes the tubes come in, which contribute to deforestation while increasing both greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption.
When you look at it this way, what initially seems like a small problem escalates into a pretty significant one. Enter zero waste toothpaste tablets.
Toothpaste Tabs: A Refreshing Alternative
A growing crop of innovative companies have dedicated themselves to solving the problem with tablets, nibs, bites, powders and other alternatives to conventional toothpaste. In addition to thoughtful, zero-waste free packaging, these products are appealing in many other ways, including in their use of non-toxic, vegan, palm oil-free, gluten-free, cruelty-free and ethically sourced ingredients.
While all of these toothpaste tablet brands make a pretty compelling case, the question remains: do they work? Because if you’re making the switch to zero waste toothpaste tablets, you’d definitely like the peace of mind that comes with knowing they’re actually doing the job they were invented to do. After all, shouldn’t our personal health and the health of the planet go hand-in-hand?
To that end, our fearless leader Scott Fischer, spent the past five months trying five brands of zero-waste toothpaste tablets — each unique in their own way — and shares his experiences with them in this helpful video. His overall takeaway? The very small amount of time it takes to get used to toothpaste tablets is far outweighed by how good it feels to know you’re making a smart and sustainable choice. We can’t think of a better reason to smile.
Interested in other zero-waste ideas? Check out our review of the OTHERWARE Pebble, a fun and colorful alternative to single-use disposable cutlery. This “made from music” portable cutlery set is a collaboration between Parrell Williams’ I Am Other creative collective and closed-loop product manufacturer Pentatonic.