The Problem: plastic coated tubes, plastic toothbrushes, microplastics
The Solution: bamboo brushes, toothpaste tablets or jars
- Switch to a bamboo toothbrush or research closed loop electric toothbrush head recycling systems if you use the latter. Around 1 million plastic toothbrushes are thrown away in the US alone every year and the plastic toothbrush that you used 10 years ago will still be on earth today and in 100 years’ time (unless it has been incinerated). Bamboo toothbrushes can be composted at home, or you could upcycle them into something like labels for your vegetable patch. Remember to pull out the bristles first and dispose of them in the household waste, as they are usually made of synthetic polymers, such as nylon. A few brands have managed to develop biodegradable alternatives. If you already use an electric toothbrush, you can buy recyclable heads from certain brands.
- Find some toothpaste tablets or natural toothpaste in a glass jar from a local zero waste shop or an online plastic free store. Many toothpastes contain microplastics and many synthetic ingredients. If you want a fluoride-containing toothpaste, there are several brands of toothpaste tablet out there containing it. You simply crunch them between your teeth and brush with water until it foams up. Remember to consult your dentists if you have any worries.
- Switch to refillable biodegradable floss or bamboo interdentals to reduce your plastic waste.