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Forget toothpaste- it's time to use powder to clean your teeth


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We are all used to the best duo - a toothpaste with a toothbrush - to clean our teeth. But besides toothpaste, sutures and interdental brushes, there are other means with which you can maintain good oral hygiene. Today we present to you tooth cleaning powder and its advantages over the toothpaste.

Why use powder to clean your teeth?

Tooth powder is a mixture of different types of powders designed to clean teeth and refresh breath in order to maintain good oral hygiene and prevent dental disease.

Tooth powder is not literally dehydrated toothpaste. As a tool that has been known for a long time - for the first time, powder was used to clean teeth from the ancient Greeks and Romans, who mixed charcoal or ash with ground bones, hooves and oyster shells to create sandy dust. The Chinese and English are also developing their own formulas, updating the "formula" with spices, herbs, vegetable oils and honey.

Fortunately, we now have much tastier powders that clean teeth and gums. Almost all modern tooth powders use baking soda or calcium carbonate as the main ingredient with additives to improve the cleansing power of the toothpaste or add flavor. [ [ref. 1] ]

The active ingredients of powder for cleaning teeth

In commercial formulas of powders for cleaning teeth, substances such as fluoride, sweeteners, flavors and detergent sodium lauryl sulfate are usually added. Often, smaller producer companies try to keep their ingredients more natural by using a combination of calcium carbonate or baking soda, salt, clay and essential oils. Some formulas may also contain activated charcoal as a natural bleaching agent that has proven itself over time. [ [ref. 2] ]

What is more effective: powder for cleaning teeth or toothpaste?

Tooth powders may seem like something very unconventional, strange and even deceptive. However, studies have shown that when used correctly, tooth powders work just as well to maintain oral health as toothpaste. A recent study even suggested that tooth powders are more effective at controlling plaque and gingivitis than toothpaste. [ [ref. 3] 

Whether you stop at toothpaste or a powder depends on your personal preferences, it is important to use both correctly, as well as brush your teeth in the right way - with movements in the direction up and down, not sideways on the teeth.

The benefits of activated charcoal

Using activated charcoal powder in the same way that you would use any other mixture of tooth powder is rather controversial. Activated charcoal is used by many manufacturers to make a variety of products, including whitening toothpastes, tooth powder and others. 

However, since it is black in color, you may need to thoroughly brush your teeth with more pressure. However, this can damage the enamel of the teeth and make them more sensitive, irritating the gums. 

There is also a tendency for charcoal to stain dental fillings, implants, veneers and others. It may be safest to stick to formulas that contain baking soda or calcium carbonate as the main ingredients if you prefer natural and working solutions.

How to make a homemade powder formula for cleaning your teeth

Preparing your own toothpaste is quite easy. Some ingredients such as baking soda can be found on the shelves of the nearest grocery store, while for others you can visit either a specialty health food store or shop online.

You can mix and combine these ingredients for your homemade powder cleaning formula:

  • Baking soda: a commonly used abrasive that gently cleans teeth and removes stains. 
  • Calcium powder: cleans and whitens teeth, provides additional calcium.
  • Bentonit clay: binds particles and contains minerals that can remineralize teeth.
  • Sea salt: helps soothe irritated gums, contains minerals.
  • Ground cloves (or cinnamon): have natural antibacterial properties, add an  interesting taste.
  • Sage: gently whitens the teeth.
  • Mint (or other essential oils): has antiseptic and painkiller properties, soothes inflamed gums, gives taste. Do not use in allergy to the plant!
  • Xylithol: gives sweetness as it is a natural sweetener.
  1. Why use powder to clean your teeth?

    • The active ingredients of powder for cleaning teeth
      • What is more effective: powder for cleaning teeth or toothpaste?
      • The benefits of activated charcoal
      • How to make a homemade powder formula for cleaning your teeth


    It is believed that the tooth powder for cleaning is available for many thousands of years. Ancient people prepared it using quite non-traditional ingredients, but today the prefered components are baking soda, salt, activated charcoal powder, flavors and ground spices. With all of them you can make your own homemade tooth powder formula for cleaning teeth without aggressive substances irritating the gums or damaging the enamel.


    1. Just a moment...
    2. Just a moment...
    3. Evaluating the Clinical Efficacy of Tooth Powder on Plaque-Induced Gingivitis: A Randomized Controlled Trial - PubMed

    The author

    Bettina Tsvetkova is a Bachelor of Marketing and Master of Entrepreneurship, a fan of healthy eating, power sports and cycling. Author of over 1500 scientifically based articles, product texts and promotional materials on a healthy topic for Bulgarian and foreign websites. 


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