I have been pinning and trying DIY toothpaste recipes for months, now. Every single one of them had extraordinarily good and healthful benefits in their ingredient lists and they all did a good job at cleaning my teeth. I didn’t find a single one that wasn’t effective. That being said there WAS always something that kept it from being the perfect formula for me and my family. Either the texture wasn’t right or it wouldn’t stay solid at room temperature or it was too solid at room temperature or it tasted awful or it would mess up the plumbing if I spit it down the sink. If I couldn’t get past these things, myself, I knew there was NO way I would get my family to use a natural toothpaste. I started looking at the ingredients in commercially available “natural toothpastes” and comparing them to the dozens of recipes I’d been finding online. Most of them, commercial or homemade, had a coconut oil base, with the exception of the commercially available Earthpaste, which has a bentonite clay base.
The bentonite clay base appealed to me for two main reasons. One, bentonite clay has amazing health and detox properties. Bentonite clay is aged volcanic ash and got its name from the largest known deposit in the U.S., at Fort Benton, Wyoming. When it’s hydrated, bentonite clay produces an “electrical charge” which gives it the ability to extract toxins, heavy metals, impurities and chemicals. How does that work? Well bentonite clay has a super strong negative ionic charge. Negative charges attract positively charged ones, like toxins, harmful bacteria, pesticides, heavy metals, etc. The clay swells as its hydrated, sort of like a sponge. (When it is fully saturated, it is easier to see the large open pores of a sponge.) Just like that, bentonite clay’s negatively charged ions open and draw in toxins, binding them in the clay as it deposits it’s predominant minerals into your system. Seems like a great trade to me — toxins for minerals. The most predominant minerals in bentonite clay are either calcium or sodium, depending on the area in which it is found. I purchase Calcium Bentonite for making toothpaste, deodorant and other skin care products.
Bentonite clay is a common ingredient in detox products or body cleanses, but it has many other healthful uses, as well. I have seen it as an ingredient in everything from skin care products, to deodorant and toothpaste and others say it is the fastest way to recover from vomiting or diarrhea. I found a post using it in Homemade Calamine Lotion and even as a fruit and veggie wash to get rid of all the pesticides. One study, highlighted at the National Institute of Medicine shows promise in using it to help treat antibiotic-resistant infections, like MRSA. I’m sure as I learn more about it, I will find even more beneficial uses, but for the time being, it’s used in my deodorant and toothpaste recipes.
The second reason I decided on bentonite clay as my toothpaste base? I can spit the toothpaste down the drain and it will wash down the drain, not solidify into a solid oil mass in my pipes. For me personally, I could probably adjust to spitting into a wastebasket, instead of the sink, but there is NO way I could count on my husband and kids to do that, consistently. Anyone who has ever had to pay a plumber to get rid of a grease clog will understand my feelings, on this one. I am so in love with coconut oil in almost every other application, but if it becomes a solid at temperatures under seventy-six degrees, it will undoubtedly become a solid in my underground pipes. Bentonite clay it is! Health and practicality all rolled into one.
MOST IMPORTANT: Bentonite clay absorbs heavy metals. Remember, we’re using it to absorb and remove those from our system. So, it’s important not to use metal bowls or utensils when measuring or mixing it. Use plastic, glass or wooden bowls and utensils only. You want your clay to be at its most powerful best absorbency, not already tired out from absorbing metal out of your bowls and utensils.
I was aiming for something like Earthpaste, but wanted the whitening and remineralizing qualities I had seen in some other DIY recipes. This toothpaste recipe is a compilation of all the best things I learned about while researching and reading different recipes. It is intended to help whiten and remineralize your teeth as it cleans them and to have a more pleasant taste than other recipes I’ve tried. Many recipes call for sweeteners like xylitol or stevia, but I prefer not to add them. Use them as you see fit. You could also substitute orange, lemon or spearmint essential oil for the peppermint to create a different flavor of toothpaste. This all natural, homemade toothpaste makes my teeth feel not only clean, but smooth and polished, like I’ve just come from the dentist office. I also love that I know every single natural ingredient that it contains and each one has a specific purpose for being there. Since I don’t have access to a nearby healthfood store, I have included my Amazon affiliate links to the ingredients I use. The initial cost seems like a lot, but remember you are buying in bulk and will have ingredients to make toothpaste for several years.
- Bentonite Clay – absorbs toxins, heavy metals, harmful bacteria, pesticides, etc and deposits calcium or sodium depending on the variety you select ( I use Calcium Bentonite.) Mild abrasive for cleaning. (my cost is 15¢ per Tablespoon)
- Activated Charcoal – fantastic for whitening, and like bentonite clay, is loaded with negatively charged ions which will absorb toxins. Mild abrasive for cleaning. It is sort of a pain to work with if you don’t know to open the container carefully. (Now, you do. 🙂 ) It is very fine powder and *poofs* like talcum powder, into the air if you don’t handle it gently. (my cost is 38¢ per teaspoon)
- Real Salt – natural sea salt with more than 60 trace minerals. I use it for antibacterial properties and a flavor-enhancer.(my cost is 1.5¢ per ¼ teaspoon)
- Calcium Magnesium Citrate Powder with Vitamin D3 – highly absorbable for bone and teeth health and for muscle and nerve function (my cost is 16¢ per teaspoon)
- Trace Mineral Drops – help restore and remineralize tooth enamel (my cost is 0.4¢ per drop)
- Germ Fighter essential oil – for antibacterial properties (my cost is 3¢ per drop)
- Peppermint essential oil – for antibacterial properties and flavor (my cost is 1.6¢ per drop)
- Go-Toobs – These are purely optional. I love these reusable, silicone squeeze tubes. The large openings make them easy to refill and to clean and for toothpaste I can just squeeze some onto my brush, instead of trying to scoop some out of a jar. I use them for traveling and lots of different products. They are also great for packing lunches, when you need a container for condiments like ketchup or salad dressing. They are well worth the investment. I have two sets and have used them over and over, again.
My cost for one recipe of this 100% natural homemade toothpaste (recipe makes about 60 grams) is $1.53, or 2.5¢ per gram. Compare that to Earthpaste at 7.1¢ per gram and the savings is huge! Earthpaste is almost three times as much! Healthier options don’t HAVE to be more expensive if you’re willing to buy ingredients in bulk and make it yourself at home.
- 2 Tablespoons Bentonite Clay
- 1 teaspoon activated charcoal
- ¼ teaspoon Real Salt
- 1 teaspoon Calcium Magnesium powder
- 10 drops Trace Minerals
- 4 drops Germ Fighter essential oil
- 15-20 drops Peppermint essential oil
- 2 - 3 Tablespoons distilled or purified water
- Put all ingredients, except water into a glass or plastic mixing bowl. **Remember not to use any metal utensils when working with Bentonite clay.**
- Add 2 Tablespoons of the water and begin mixing.
- Add as much of the last Tablespoon of water, as you need, to get a paste that is the consistency that you prefer. Stir until all ingredients are thoroughly combined into a smooth paste.
- Put the paste in a squeeze tube or small jar and use as you would commercial toothpaste.
It may seem a little strange to actually be “blacking out” your teeth, in order to whiten them. Yes! Your mouth is going to be black, or at least slate, while you are brushing. After rinsing, you’ll never know though and your mouth will feel squeaky clean! I hope you’ll give it a try. I have only made the switch to natural toothpaste in the last couple of months and so most of my experience has been from experimenting. Do you feel it’s worth the savings to make your own at home since the same ingredients can be used in other DIY healthcare products, as well? If you buy your natural toothpaste at a health store, what are your favorite brands? Have you ever tried to make a knock-off of that brand, at home?