Better Goods Personal Care

We Reviewed 15+ Products To Find The Best Natural Toothpaste (2021)

Better Goods

May 12, 2021

best natural toothpaste

A natural toothpaste is a great place to start in any clean living journey. If you're trying to be more conscious of the products you use and consume, making the switch to a natural toothpaste is a great move.

Because toothpaste is one of the few personal care products you use internally, the concern over the ingredients used is growing. Fluoride is the major controversial ingredient found in toothpastes (more on that later), but you might not know that traditional, big brand toothpastes like Crest and Colgate use ingredients you probably don't want in your mouth.

So, what else should you know about natural toothpastes, and which ones are the best? We took a close look at the world of natural toothpastes, the ingredients you should avoid, and what the deal is with fluoride.

What Ingredients Should You Avoid In Toothpaste?

Traditional toothpastes use a laundry list of chemicals that we recommend avoiding. While this isn't an exhaustive list, you can find ingredients like:

SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) - Most commonly used as a surfactant or foaming agent - this common toothpaste ingredient creates the foam when you brush. It can sometimes be irritating to the gums and mouth. If you've ever had canker sores, SLS might have been the cause of it. SLS doesn't do anything to help clean the teeth—it just makes it foam. For this reason, we recommend a toothpaste that doesn't have SLS.

Artificial Sweeteners - These are used in toothpaste to make it taste better. Examples include aspartame and sodium saccharin.

Polyethylene Glycol (PEG) - A petroleum-based compound used in toothpastes to keep the ingredients stable and increase the effectiveness of the other ingredients. PEGs can possibly be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, a carcinogen.

Artificial Colors - The funky colors in many toothpastes are achieved with the help of artificial colorings. These dyes are derived from petroleum and coal tar, and can accumulate in the body over time.

Parabens - Artificial preservatives used in toothpastes to prevent bacteria from forming. Parabens are thought to be endocrine disruptors, possibly causing unknown health effects. While preservatives are important, there are safer alternatives to parabens.

Triclosan - This ingredient is used in toothpaste as an antibacterial agent, where it's meant to help kill bacteria. In 2016, the United States Food & Drug Administration banned the ingredient from soaps, but it still remains legal to use in toothpaste. Brands have started removing it from their toothpaste formulas, but it's still possible to find triclosan in mainstream toothpastes.

Should You Use Toothpaste Without Fluoride?

Fluoride is a controversial ingredient that everyone has heard of. Approximately 95% of conventional toothpastes sold contain fluoride, and you'll find it in community drinking water in virtually every part of North America.

Fluoride is a proven way of preventing tooth decay. However, in recent years, it's come under fire for potential negative health effects it may have. While the subject of water fluoridation and its possible health effects are outside of the scope of this guide, we must still cover it.

More than 50 years of research have been done on fluoride, and it appears to be safe when used topically. Most natural toothpastes on the market forgo the inclusion of fluoride in their formulas. However, we were able to find a few choices that have a clean list of ingredients with the inclusion of fluoride, for those that wish to use one.

Why We Don't Recommend Toothpaste With Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal toothpaste is a big trend on the internet, promoted by influencers like the Kardashians and promoted as a natural way to whiten and protect teeth.

Charcoal toothpaste is controversial. A 2017 study warned against the daily use of activated charcoal toothpastes, and long-term use of these toothpastes can actually harm teeth.

These are the facts about charcoal toothpaste:

  • Charcoal is very abrasive, and not suitable for daily use. Because it's so abrasive, it can wear down the enamel of the teeth, permanently damaging them, and possibly even making them more yellow because of exposure of the dentin in the teeth.
  • Most charcoal toothpastes don't contain fluoride - It's a personal choice whether or not to use toothpaste with fluoride, but very few charcoal toothpastes contain it.
  • It can cause staining on some teeth because small particles can accumulate in small cracks in the teeth.
  • Everyday use can cause tooth sensitivity.
  • Its long-term effects are unknown. Because the use of charcoal toothpaste is a modern trend, the long-term effects of regular use is unknown. Dentists worry that it may cause damage to dental work, like veneers and crowns.

For these reasons—especially the fact that it can damage teeth—Better Goods takes the stance that activated charcoal toothpaste is unsafe and therefore, we don't recommend it.

Our Methodology

To compile our list of the best natural deodorants, we looked at social media, online clean beauty stores, and online magazines.

All of these natural deodorants are advertised as being clean, safer alternatives. We found that while many of the products we looked at were good in terms of ingredients, some of them had ingredients that we wouldn't recommend.

We reviewed 15+ of the most popular clean toothpastes on the market and rated them as follows:

Best ???? – These products are the best of the best. They contain all-clean ingredients, are non-toxic and are often the best choice for our environment.

Good – These products are typically quite good, but don’t go above and beyond like our best choices.

Iffy – These products are typically okay, but have some issues that make us unable to give them a “Good” rating. Often times they contain ingredients that are questionable.

Bad – These products typically have toxic ingredients or issues that make them dangerous or unsuitable to use. These products should typically be avoided.

Natural Toothpastes Rated: Best

These are the best natural toothpastes we found. Of all the products we looked at, these are the best of the best.

Burt's Bees

Enamel Care Toothpaste with Fluoride - Mountain Mint
Rating: Best 🌟
Price: $5.47 ($1.16 per oz)

If you’re looking for a natural toothpaste with fluoride, this is our top recommendation. It has a great list of safe ingredients, and is a top choice for a toothpaste with fluoride.

This product can be recycled by returning it to Burt’s Bees (US / Canada only) with a prepaid shipping label you can get here.

Active Ingredients:

  • Sodium Fluoride

Ingredients:

  • Glycerin,
  • Water,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine*,
  • Flavor (Flavor/Aroma),
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Carrageenan,
  • Steviol Glycosides,
  • Titanium Dioxide

Davids

Premium Natural Toothpaste - Peppermint
Rating: Best 🌟
Price: $9.95 ($1.9 per oz)

Davids toothpaste is our #1 recommendation for a non-fluoride natural toothpaste because of its simple, natural list of ingredients.

The tube is made from aluminum, making it fully recyclable, and the manufacturer that makes the cardboard box is run on 100% wind energy.

Ingredients:

  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Vegetable Glycerin,
  • Water,
  • Sodium Bicarbonate,
  • Xylitol,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate,
  • Carrageenan,
  • Peppermint Oil (Mentha Piperita Oil),
  • Spearmint Oil (Mentha Viridis Leaf Oil),
  • Anise Seed Extract (Pimpinella Anisum Seed Extract),
  • Wintergreen Oil (Gaultheria Procumbens Leaf Oil),
  • Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract)

Dr. Bronner

All-One Toothpaste - Peppermint
Rating: Best 🌟
Price: $6.49 ($1.3 per oz)

For the budget-minded conscious shopper looking for a fluoride-free toothpaste, this is our #1 recommendation.

Dr. Bronner’s toothpaste is fluoride-free and made with 70% organic ingredients. The coconut oil is fair trade, and the box and tube are 100% recyclable. Like all of the other Dr. Bronner’s products we’ve looked at, this one gets a top rating.

Dr Bronner’s claims that the tube is recyclable, but it seems to be a typical plastic tube, which likely will not end up recycled when put into the recycling bin.

Ingredients:

  • Organic Glycerin,
  • Organic Aloe Juice (Aloe Barbadensis Juice),
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Sodium Bicarbonate,
  • Potassium Cocoate,
  • Organic Peppermint Oil (Mentha Piperita Oil),
  • Organic Wild Mint Crystals (Mentha Arvensis Crystals),
  • Organic Coconut Flour (Cocos Nucifera Flour),
  • Organic Coconut Oil (Cocos Nucifera),
  • Tocopherol,
  • Citric Acid,
  • Organic Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract)

Natural Toothpastes Rated: Good

While these natural toothpastes aren't the best of the best, they're still a good option and you can feel confident using them.

DENT tabs

Tablets for Teeth Cleaning - Mint
Rating: Good

Contains flouride.

These chewable tabs are made with non-toxic and natural ingredients. They’re used by chewing them until they become creamy, then simply brushing your teeth like you would with regular toothpaste.

This product is also 100% zero-waste, as it’s plastic free and made with cornstarch coated paper. The packaging also uses environmentally-friendly organic inks. The packaging can be composted along with your organic waste.

For those looking for a natural, zero-waste toothpaste with fluoride, this is a great option.

Active Ingredients:

  • Sodium Fluoride

Ingredients:

  • Microcrystalline Cellulose,
  • Sodium Lauroyl Glutamate,
  • Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract),
  • Silica,
  • Natural Mint Flavor,
  • Sodium Bicarbonate,
  • Citric Acid,
  • Magnesium Stearate,
  • Menthol,
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Eugenol*

Hello

Antiplaque + Whitening Toothpaste Tablets
Rating: Good
Price: $8.99 ($5.29 per oz)

This fluoride-free alternative to DENT tabs has many of the same benefits, also with a clean list of ingredients. Like DENT tablets, these are meant to be chewed, used like regular toothpaste, and spit out.

The packaging is plastic-free, however unlike DENT tabs, it’s not compostable.

Ingredients:

  • Sorbitol,
  • Xylitol,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Cellulose,
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Stearic Acid,
  • Flavor (Flavor/Aroma),
  • Coconut Oil (Cocos Nucifera Oil),
  • Zinc Citrate,
  • Magnesium Stearate,
  • Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract),
  • Tea Tree Leaf Oil (Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Oil)*

Boka

Ela Mint Natural Toothpaste
Rating: Good
Price: $12 ($3 per oz)

This fluoride-free toothpaste is the only one we looked at that uses nano-hydroxyapatite, a fluoride alternative that has been used in Japan since the 1990s and is growing in popularity in the US.

Studies have shown this ingredient is a safe and effective replacement for fluoride. It remineralizes teeth, strengthening them over time.

Ingredients:

  • Water,
  • Vegetable Glycerin,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Sorbitol,
  • Silica,
  • Hydroxyapatite (Nano),
  • Sodium Benzoate*,
  • Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate,
  • Peppermint Oil (Mentha Piperita Oil),
  • Spearmint Oil (Mentha Viridis Leaf Oil),
  • Star Anise Oil (Illicium Verum Oil),
  • Wintergreen Oil (Gaultheria Procumbens Leaf Oil),
  • Xylitol,
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Stevia Powder (Stevia Rebaudiana Powder),
  • Methylsulfonylmethane,
  • Aloe (Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice),
  • Sodium Bicarbonate,
  • Green or White Tea Leaf Extract (Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract),
  • Cucumber (Cucumis Sativus Fruit Extract),
  • Avocado Extract (Persea Gratissima Fruit Extract),
  • Mango Fruit Extract (Mangifera Indica Fruit Extract),
  • Menthol,
  • Cardamom Seed (Elettaria Cardamomum Miniscula Seed),
  • Potassium Chloride

Himalaya Botanique

Complete Care Whitening Toothpaste - Simply Mint
Rating: Good
Price: $5.99 ($1.13 per oz)

About half of the ingredients in this toothpaste are organic, and all of them are natural.

The cardboard packaging of the toothpaste is recyclable, but the tube itself is a standard metal and plastic tube that isn’t recyclable.

Ingredients:

  • Water,
  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Xylitol,
  • Vegetable Glycerin,
  • Silica,
  • Lauryl Glucoside,
  • Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract),
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Natural Flavor (Essential Oil Blend),
  • Sodium Bicarbonate,
  • Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate,
  • Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate,
  • Organic Menthol,
  • Sodium Chloride,
  • Zinc Citrate,
  • Thymol,
  • Organic Neem Leaf Extract (Azardirachta Indica Leaf Extract),
  • Organic Pomegranate Extract (Punica Granatum Extract),
  • Organic Vidanga Extract (Embelia Ribes Fruit Extract),
  • Organic Belleric Myrobalan/Bedda Nut Extract (Terminalia Bellerica Fruit Extract),
  • Organic Indian Gooseberry/Amla Extract (Phyllanthus Emblica Fruit Extract),
  • Organic Chebulic Myrobalan Extract (Terminalia Chebula Fruit Extract),
  • Organic Indian Gum Arabic Tree Extract (Acacia Arabica Bark Extract)

Dr. Sheffield

Certified Natural Toothpaste (Extra-Whitening)
Rating: Good
Price: $12.99 ($1.3 per oz)

The brand claims that Dr. Sheffield the man created the original toothpaste in a tube in the 1800s, and their current toothpaste is based on the original recipe. The list of ingredients is clean, with no artificial ingredients in the formula whatsoever.

The packaging of this toothpaste is made from recyclable 100% aluminum.

Ingredients:

  • Dicalcium Phosphate Dihydrate,
  • Water,
  • Vegetable Glycerin,
  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Organic Coconut Oil (Cocos Nucifera),
  • Soapbark Wood Extract (Quillaja Saponaria Wood Extract),
  • Organic Aloe (Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice),
  • Xylitol,
  • Carrageenan,
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract),
  • Yucca Root Extract (Yucca Schidigera Root Extract),
  • Sarsaparilla Extract (Smilax Aristolochiifolia Root Extract),
  • Wild Yam Extract (Dioscorea Villosa Extract),
  • Papain,
  • Bromelain,
  • Natural Peppermint Flavor,
  • Natural Menthol,
  • Natural Spearmint Flavor,
  • Natural Fennel Flavor,
  • Orris Powder (Iris Florentina Root Powder),
  • Propolis Extract,
  • Organic Tea Tree Leaf OIl (Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Oil),
  • Myrrh Resin Extract (Commiphora Myrrha Resin Extract)

Desert Essence

Tea Tree Oil & Neem Toothpaste
Rating: Good
Price: $6.99 ($1.12 per oz)

This fluoride-free toothpaste has a simple, clean list of ingredients. Desert. The packaging is also 100% recyclable.

Ingredients:

  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Glycerin,
  • Water,
  • Tea Tree Leaf Water (Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Water),
  • Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate,
  • Carrageenan,
  • Wintergreen Oil (Gaultheria Procumbens Leaf Oil),
  • Sodium Bicarbonate,
  • Tea Tree Leaf Oil (Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Oil)*,
  • Chinaberry/Neem Leaf Extract (Melia Azadirachta Leaf Extract),
  • Sea Salt

JASON

Sea Fresh Strengthening Fluoride-Free Toothpaste - Deep Sea Spearmint
Rating: Good
Price: $5.99 ($1 per oz)

Clean ingredients make up the formula of this toothpaste from JASON. The packaging of this toothpaste is not fully recyclable, however. The standard cardboard box is recyclable, but the tube itself is not.

Ingredients:

  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Water,
  • Glycerin,
  • Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate,
  • Spearmint Oil (Mentha Viridis Leaf Oil),
  • Carrageenan,
  • Organic Aloe Juice (Aloe Barbadensis Juice),
  • Bamboo Powder (Bambusa Arundinacea Powder),
  • Parsley Extract (Carum Petroselinum Extract),
  • Grapefruit Seed Extract (Citrus Grandis Seed Extract),
  • Chlorella Pyrenoidosa Extract,
  • Beefsteak Mint Extract (Perilla Ocymoides Seed Extract),
  • Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract),
  • Silica,
  • Sodium Bicarbonate

Auromere

Ayurvedic Herbal Toothpaste - Fresh Mint
Rating: Good
Price: $7.99 ($1.92 per oz)

This natural toothpaste without fluoride contains a long list of extracts and naturally-derived ingredients. With a mild taste and clean list of ingredients, this toothpaste gets a good rating.

The tube for this toothpaste is not recyclable.

Ingredients:

  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Glycerin,
  • Water,
  • Peelu Extract (Salvadora Persica Extract),
  • Neem Extract (Azadirachta Indica Extract),
  • Licorice (Glycyrrhiza Glabra Root Extract),
  • Pomegranate Rind (Punica Granatum Rind),
  • Jujube Fruit Extract (Ziziphus Jujuba Fruit Extract),
  • Rose Apple Extract (Syzygium Jambos Extract),
  • Clove Extract (Syzygium Aromaticum Extract),
  • Persian Walnut Extract (Juglans Regia Extract),
  • Vajradanti Bark Extract (Barleria Prionitis Bark Extract),
  • Indian Almond Extract (Terminalia Myriocarpa Extract),
  • Belleric Myrobalan/Bedda Nut Extract (Terminalia Bellerica Extract),
  • Asian Holly Oak Extract,
  • Prickly Ash Extract (Zanthoxylum Americanum Extract),
  • Winged Prickly Ash Extract (Zanthoxylum Alatum Extract),
  • East Indian Redwood Extract (Sappan Wood Extract),
  • Catechu Extract (Senegalia Catechu Extract),
  • Bengal Madder Extract (Rubia Cordifolia Extract),
  • Organic Indian Gum Arabic Tree Extract (Acacia Arabica Bark Extract),
  • Sarsaparilla Extract (Smilax Aristolochiifolia Root Extract),
  • Cinnamon Extract (Cinnamomum Verum Extract),
  • Medlar Bark (Mespilus Bark),
  • Mayweed Extract (Anthemis Cotula Extract),
  • Bishop's Weed Flower Extract,
  • Silica,
  • Sodium Coco-Sulfate,
  • Seaweed Extract (Chondrus Crispus Extract),
  • Cellulose Gum,
  • Clove Bud Oil (Eugenia Caryophyllus Bud Oil)*,
  • Peppermint Oil (Mentha Piperita Oil),
  • Spearmint Oil (Mentha Viridis Leaf Oil),
  • Eucalyptus Leaf Oil (Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Oil),
  • Cinnamon Oil (Cinnamomum Verum Bark Oil),
  • Menthol,
  • Thymol,
  • Anethol,
  • Potassium Sorbate

Burt's Bees

Purely White Zen Peppermint Toothpaste Fluoride-Free
Rating: Good
Price: $5.99 ($1.27 per oz)

With a simple and clean list of ingredients, this fluoride-free toothpaste from Burt’s Bees gets a good rating.

This product can be recycled by returning it to Burt’s Bees (US / Canada only) with a prepaid shipping label you can get here.

Ingredients:

  • Glycerin,
  • Water,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate,
  • Natural Peppermint Flavor,
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Carrageenan,
  • Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract),
  • Titanium Dioxide

Hello

Sensitivity Relief Toothpaste with Fluoride
Rating: Good
Price: $5.49 ($1.37 per oz)

We looked at two toothpastes from the hello brand. This one contains fluoride, and doesn’t contain activated charcoal. Unlike the charcoal-based toothpaste from this brand, this is a great natural toothpaste that we would recommend.

The tube of this toothpaste is not recyclable.

Active Ingredients:

  • Potassium Nitrate,
  • Sodium Fluoride

Ingredients:

  • Sorbitol,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Water,
  • Xylitol,
  • Aloe Gel (Aloe Barbadensis Gel),
  • Glycerin,
  • Flavor (Flavor/Aroma),
  • Coconut Oil (Cocos Nucifera Oil),
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Titanium Dioxide,
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine*,
  • Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate,
  • Organic Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract)

Natural Toothpastes Rated: Iffy

These toothpastes have issues that make us unable to recommend them.

Tom's of Maine

Whole Care Natural Toothpaste with Fluoride - Spearmint
Rating: Iffy
Price: $5.99 ($1.5 per oz)

We looked two natural toothpastes from Tom’s of Maine. They both include sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), a controversial ingredient. The main issue with it in toothpaste is that it can cause mouth irritation in some users. While not an overtly risky ingredient, Tom’s of Main is the only brand we looked at that contained this ingredient, so we give it a rating of “iffy”.

Ingredients:

  • Sodium Monofluorophosphate,
  • Glycerin,
  • Water,
  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Xylitol,
  • Natural Spearmint Flavor,
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate*,
  • Zinc Citrate,
  • Sodium Bicarbonate,
  • Carrageenan,
  • Benzyl Alcohol*

Tom's of Maine

Fluoride-Free Antiplaque & Whitening Natural Toothpaste - Peppermint
Rating: Iffy
Price: $4.79 ($0.87 per oz)

We looked two natural toothpastes from Tom’s of Maine. They both include sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), a controversial ingredient. The main issue with it in toothpaste is that it can cause mouth irritation in some users. While not an overtly risky ingredient, Tom’s of Main is the only brand we looked at that contained this ingredient, so we give it a rating of “iffy”.

Ingredients:

  • Calcium Carbonate,
  • Glycerin,
  • Water,
  • Xylitol,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Natural Peppermint Flavor,
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate*,
  • Zinc Citrate,
  • Carrageenan,
  • Sodium Bicarbonate

Hello

Activated Charcoal Teeth Whitening Fluoride-Free Toothpaste
Rating: Iffy
Price: $5.99 ($1.5 per oz)

We don’t recommend toothpaste with activated charcoal. The main reason is that it can cause damage to the enamel of the teeth with regular use. Read our full explanation on why we don’t recommend charcoal toothpaste.

Ingredients:

  • Sorbitol,
  • Hydrated Silica,
  • Vegetable Glycerin,
  • Xylitol,
  • Water,
  • Activated Charcoal,
  • Flavor (Flavor/Aroma),
  • Xanthan Gum,
  • Titanium Dioxide,
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine*,
  • Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate,
  • Coconut Oil (Cocos Nucifera Oil),
  • Potassium Sorbate,
  • Organic Stevia Extract (Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract)

Quick Recommendations: Our Best Natural Toothpaste Recommendations

For a fluoride-free toothpaste, Davids Premium Natural Toothpaste ($1.9 per oz) is a great choice. It has a clean list of ingredients and a fully-recyclable aluminum tube. Dr Bronner's All-One Toothpaste ($1.3 per oz) is also a great choice for the budget-minded conscious shopper.

For a toothpaste with fluoride, Burt's Bees Enamel Care Toothpaste ($1.16 per oz) is our #1 pick.

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