bamboo toothbrush

small tool, big impact: brushing up on the eco-benefits of bamboo toothbrushes

small tool, big impact: brushing up on the eco-benefits of bamboo toothbrushes

You’ve heard that bamboo toothbrushes are better for the environment, but do you know exactly why? Of course, at face value, bamboo seems better than plastic. It’s natural, it’s biodegradable, and it’s not very resource intensive...things that plastic simply can’t claim.

But there are even more bamboo toothbrush benefits below the surface. From sequestering carbon during the growth phase to releasing fewer greenhouse gasses during the manufacturing phase, bamboo toothbrushes have a far smaller environmental footprint than their plastic counterparts, and they’re gentler on your oral microbiome. Sounds like a win-win to us!

Now, to shine a light on all the positives of the bamboo toothbrush, let’s dive into some of the negatives of the plastic toothbrushes that have been around (and will stay around) for far too long.

how long does it take for a plastic toothbrush to decompose?

Experts estimate that it takes around 500 years (maybe even up to 1,000 years) for a single plastic toothbrush to decompose. Even then, the pieces simply decompose into smaller microplastics, which have the power to pollute ecosystems in a less obvious way. It’s difficult (if not impossible) to recycle plastic toothbrushes because they’re so durable, and their small parts can clog up recycling equipment. Most get lost in the process and make their way to landfills, open fields, oceans, rivers, and other waterways, harming delicate ecosystems and precious wildlife.

The plastic toothbrush, as we know it, has only been around since 1938....meaning every conventional toothbrush that has ever been made is still lingering around out there. (That’s part of the reason why we don’t truly know how long it takes for one to decompose.) You’ve probably heard us say before that 1 billion toothbrushes (equal to roughly 50 million pounds of plastic waste) end up in landfills every year in the US alone. Isn’t it time we switched to a better option, say the bamboo toothbrush?

other environmental impacts of plastic toothbrushes

Did you know that both the toothbrush handle and bristles in a conventional toothbrush are derived from petroleum oil? This leads to a lot of environmental pollution throughout the manufacturing process: extracting the petroleum oil → transporting it → refining it for manufacturing → and managing the plastic waste at the end of life.

P.S. If you’re set on a plastic toothbrush, using a toothbrush with a replaceable head can help you reduce plastic toothbrush waste by 30%. But we much prefer our bamboo toothbrush, and we’ve outlined exactly why below.

bamboo toothbrushes can decompose in just a few weeks

If you send your bamboo toothbrush to your local commercial composting facility, it will decompose in just a few weeks. Five weeks for a bamboo toothbrush versus 500 years for a plastic toothbrush? We’ll take that any day.

Worst case scenario, if you even just throw your bamboo toothbrush into your garden, it will still only take up to 10 years to decompose. But we recommend stocking up on bamboo toothbrushes and getting to know your local composting facility. Just search “commercial compost near me” to get to know your local spots.

Now, let’s talk about some of the less obvious benefits of a bamboo toothbrush. Unlike plastic, bamboo is a real plant! Did you know that it can absorb 2x the carbon dioxide that trees can while generating 30% more oxygen? On top of that, bamboo is a fast-growing plant that can thrive in many environments without harmful pesticides and fertilizers. Throughout the manufacturing process, bamboo toothbrushes involve less energy, less water, and less greenhouse gas emissions than their plastic counterparts. What’s not to love?

why do we call ours the best bamboo toothbrush?

We’ll be the first to say that opting for any bamboo toothbrush is better for the planet than continuing on the path of plastics. With so many on the market, we wanted to round up a few important details that set our bamboo toothbrush apart from the competition.

  • 100% natural bamboo handle: if you see color or other embellishments on your bamboo toothbrush, you might want to ask if it’s 100% natural bamboo. Our bamboo toothbrushes are just that…true bamboo.
  • plant-derived, BPA-free bristles: our soft, BPA-free bristles are derived from castor oil. Unlike many others that are derived from petroleum oil, even our bristles are better for the environment (and your body) than their conventional counterparts.
  • soft, gentle mouthfeel: our soft high-performance bristles deliver a powerful clean that removes plaque without being too harsh on your enamel, gums, and mucosal lining. The natural bamboo is easy to grip, allowing you to easily and gently maneuver it in those hard-to-reach corners of your mouth.
  • sleek and minimalistic: everyone loves a toothbrush that looks as good as it performs, and ours sports a simple, natural look that will shine on your bathroom shelves.

While 30 billion toothbrushes worldwide can feel like a problem too big to face, we want to encourage you that together, our small daily steps can add up to big leaps in the right direction. There’s power in numbers, and if we all begin the transition to daily oral care products that are better for the planet (and your body), we can make a big difference. Why not start the journey with a bamboo toothbrush?

buy now.

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