At the risk of sounding like a broken record....did you know that, in the US alone, roughly 1 billion (with a “b”) toothbrushes end up in landfills every year? Did you also know that it can take 500-1,000 years for a plastic toothbrush to decompose? Now, we don’t like to harp on the negative, but we feel that this is a devastating amount of plastic waste that many people don’t even think twice about.
But we’re here to change that.
As a company founded on the motto, “sustain nature+you” we’re always looking for new ways to clean up the oral care industry and provide healthy, natural, and sustainable options to optimize your oral care routine! One of these options is our amazing bamboo toothbrush, a sustainable alternative that can decompose within weeks.
We know that opting for new, more sustainable products can be overwhelming. So to make things a little easier, we’re covering some of the most common ways to dispose of your bamboo toothbrush, so you can make sure it decomposes in as little time as possible.
Now, we couldn’t dive into the different composting options without mentioning all of the ways you can upcycle your bamboo toothbrush. Believe it or not, your bamboo toothbrush can live a long happy life once you’re done using it! We’ve outlined a few of our favorite upcycling ideas below.
- Use it to clean crevices and stubborn spots around the house. Whether you use it on the grout in your bathroom, stubborn spots on an old pan, a stain on your favorite pair of jeans, or the crevices in your favorite pair of shoes, your bamboo toothbrush can help you keep things sparkling clean.
- Remove the bristles to make garden markers. You can paint your bamboo toothbrush a fun color and use it to tell your herbs apart when you’re starting your garden! Since it’s recommended to replace your toothbrush every 3 months, it’s easy to collect these throughout the year. Then, come springtime, you’ve got plenty of garden markers for your new seedlings.
- Use it in a fun crafts project. Get creative here! Maybe you have a little one who’s working on a school art project, or you simply want to channel the low-waste artist inside you.
We know that upcycling can seem hard at first, but once you start, we hope the creativity starts flowing....and finding second-life ideas for your bamboo toothbrush becomes second nature.
how to compost a bamboo toothbrush
If you know you don’t have any reason to upcycle it, make sure you remove the bristles with pliers and get to composting. Our bamboo toothbrush handles are 100% biodegradable, meaning no matter what you do, they will eventually decompose. This is one of the many bamboo toothbrush benefits to consider next time you need a new toothbrush.
To speed up the process, we’ve outlined some of the most effective ways to dispose of it.
send it to your commercial compost
Commercial compost heaps are most effective at breaking down items such as bamboo toothbrushes because they’re operated at much higher temperatures than at-home compost. They also contain a wider range of materials and microorganisms that aid in the breakdown process! This means that when you send your bamboo toothbrush to an industrial compost like this, it will break down in a matter of weeks (versus the months or years it might take to decompose in an at-home compost bin or garden).
If you’ve never sent something to a commercial compost in your area, don’t worry....it’s easy to figure out! Just start by searching “commercial compost near me” to see your options! The search should return facilities in your area as well as rules + regulations to be aware of.
throw it in your at-home compost
Do you have an awesome at-home compost going? If not, rest assured that summer is a great season to start! It’s not only the perfect place to dispose of biodegradable products like your bamboo toothbrush, but it’s an amazing way to make use of your food scraps, so you can avoid contributing ~120 billion pounds of food that end up in landfills each year. Did you know that experts estimate 30-40% of the entire food supply in America ends up as waste?
All the more reason to give your food scraps a second life. To get your home compost started, we recommend this simple 5-step process outlined by NPR.
Once your home compost is up and running, you can place your bamboo toothbrush inside and expect it to decompose in roughly 4-6 months. The actual time will depend on the temperature of your compost as well as the other items and microorganisms present in the heap. To speed things up, it can help to (safely) cut the toothbrush into smaller pieces using a saw.
plant it in soil
If you don’t have a home compost (apartment life or city living doesn’t always allow for this), you can also plant your bamboo toothbrush in soil. If you have a friend with a garden, you can plant it horizontally in the garden, and it will decompose in about three years.
It’s not the most effective route, so we recommend trying out the first two options before this! Remember, a commercial compost facility is probably within reach, you just have to find it.
last ditch effort: toss it in your garden
Last and actually least: if you simply throw your bamboo toothbrush (without the bristles) into your garden, you can have peace of mind knowing it will eventually decompose. We don’t recommend this route....it’ll probably take 5-10 years to decompose this way. But at least that’s a teeny tiny amount of time compared to the 1,000+ years it could take for a plastic toothbrush to decompose!
What makes Davids’ the best bamboo toothbrush
To us, a bamboo toothbrush is a no-brainer. But things get tricky when it comes to choosing from the countless options on the market. We may be biased, but there are a few matter-of-fact things that set our bamboo toothbrush apart from the rest.
First and foremost, our soft performance bristles are BPA-free and derived from castor oil. Unlike most toothbrushes out there that use bristles derived from petroleum, our plant-based bristles have soothing capabilities, as castor oil is known for its anti-inflammatory effects. The softness of our bristles allows for gentle, effective cleaning. We do not take shortcuts when it comes to bristle production, so you can brush happily knowing these high-quality bristles are good for your enamel and gums.
Second, our bamboo handle is easy to maneuver and known for its smooth and gentle mouthfeel. So you can get to those hard-to-reach places in your mouth without causing any discomfort.
And last but not least, our bamboo toothbrush comes in FSC-certified, sustainable packaging. So you can brush in peace knowing that Davids’ is the best bamboo toothbrush to sustain nature+you.