Things About Toothpaste You Probably Didn't Know
MooGoo’s Toothpaste ("Moothpaste" because we like puns) took quite a few years for us to develop. Because we went into the development with fresh eyes we learned A LOT along the way about toothpaste that may surprise you. Why are some toothpastes full of SLS, Titanium Dioxide, Saccharin and other ingredients that have been usually taken out of skincare and food? We don’t know but suspect that it may be because these brands are so big and in so many markets that any reformulating would be difficult. That is why their ingredients still belong in the 1970s
Why are some toothpaste pretty much just foamy pastes? Is charcoal good? Is bicarb soda good? We find that not many people know too much about what they put in their mouths every morning and night.
Don’t be Afraid of Baking Soda, it Isn't as Abrasive as You Think.
According to Mohs Scale of Mineral Hardness, (which measures the hardness of all minerals on a spectrum from 1 - 10) Tooth Enamel has a hardness rating of 5, and Baking Soda has a hardness rating of 2.5. For context, Diamonds have a rating of 10. Despite Baking Soda having half the hardness of Enamel, it still creates enough gentle friction when rubbing up against it, to dislodge plaque from your chompers.
It has some other benefits for oral health as well. Baking Soda's pH (8.3) is believed to help make your mouth more alkaline, which is a good thing because those pesky mouth bacteria aren't happy in an alkaline environment higher than 6.5.
We aren’t suggesting just use Baking Soda to clean your teeth (you can if you want of course.) If you're interested in learning more about Baking Soda as it relates to oral health, this is a good overview: The Benefits of Baking Soda. https://www.orawellness.com/is-baking-soda-safe-to-brush-with/
Interestingly it is Calcium Carbonate (Chalk) in toothpaste that we found was more abrasive on teeth than baking soda so that’s the one we had to be careful with.
Is Moothpaste Gentle on Gums?
All toothpaste needs some “mechanical” action to clean effectively. However, if it is too abrasive it is not good for people that suffer from gum recession. There are only 2 labs that we know of that test for abrasiveness, ironically on cows teeth. We had our toothpaste tested and they have a “Relative Dentine Abrasvity” (RDA) of around 70 which we feel is the best compromise between cleaning effectively and protecting the gums.
Ingredients Phased Out in Food and Skincare are Still Sometimes Used in Toothpaste.
Toothpaste regulations seem to be based on the premise that none of it is swallowed. Obviously these people arent parents. This is one of the main reasons we created MooGoo Moothpaste. Our customers were asking for a toothpaste made of the best and most natural ingredients available, just like their MooGoo skincare. They also wanted a formula that didn’t have all the ingredients we avoid when making our other products. We're talking SLS, Parabens, artificial sweeteners and colours. There was even an ingredient that had been banned in handwash because of being a potential carcinogen that was still in toothpaste until this year. Toothpaste often has shiny boxes and scientific looking labels, but the ingredients are very 1960’s.
It's surprisingly difficult to find a full list of ingredients for some pretty popular dental care products online. Sodium Lauryl Sulphate ("SLS") is the surfactant used in most dishwashing liquids and cleansers that causes them to foam up and bubble. Because it can be quite irritating to the skin, and a lot of our customers have concerns about SLS in general, we don't use it in any MooGoo products. So of course, we didn't put it in our Moothpaste either. This means it doesn't foam as much as other toothpaste brands - but that doesn't mean it's not doing its job! This is a trade-off we’re happy to make.
Brushing with any kind of toothpaste is preferable to not brushing at all! However, there is no need to spend decades swallowing and absorbing these chemicals when there are healthy alternatives available that work even better.
The Controversy of Fluoride.
Fluoride is a controversial topic, both in water and in toothpaste. When it comes to Toothpaste, you need a remineralising agent of some kind to keep teeth healthy, and this has been the primary function of Fluoride in toothpaste for many years. A lot of people felt that creating a toothpaste without Fluoride is irresponsible and we have also come to realise that most Dental Professionals will not recommend a dental regime that doesn’t contain Fluoride of some kind. The issue for us is that a lot of our customers have told us they would never use, or give their children toothpaste that contains Fluoride. So, where do we go from here?
That’s when we found Calcium Hydroxyapatite! This is a natural and vegan mineral that offers much the same benefits as Fluoride. As with alternative ingredients in skincare, this alternative to Fluoride is a little more expensive and is trickier to formulate with. But we persevered and found that Calcium Hydroxyapatite does a great job of remineralising teeth and repairing small cracks and scratches, just like Fluoride does. We've always relied on evidence when choosing ingredients, and this was no exception.
We then realised that some customers simply insisted on using formulas with Fluoride. For many years we’ve chosen to keep Fluoride off our ingredients list, but have now decided it’s come time for us to make room for this ingredient in one of our Dental Range products and cater to these customers. While there is still a lot of controversy towards the health effects of Fluoride, we’ve now decided to offer a formula with Fluoride because we still believe that our formula is healthier than most of what’s available out there in the market. We’ve spent a lot of time (and MOOlah) on sourcing the best natural ingredients so we can offer a Fluoride option that is made with the same healthy and natural ingredients that our non-Fluoride option offers.
Our philosophy is to give people a choice after all who are we to tell people what to believe. So you can either choose an alternative to Fluoride or choose Fluoride. The good news is that in either case, you won’t be consuming all the other synthetic chemicals that are in commercial toothpaste.
Many People React to Peppermint Oil so We Have to Modify it to a "Natural Flavour"
Essential Oils are made up of dozens of different compounds. It's a certain part of Peppermint Oil (and most essential oils) that cause reactions. We use a Peppermint Essential Oil that has the allergy trigger removed. Because the original Oil has been altered, we can't call it plain old Peppermint Oil anymore, that's why it's called 'Natural Flavour' on our ingredients list.
What is Wrong With Glycerin in Toothpaste?
Glycerin is used in most toothpaste to help keep it moist. However, there have been questions over its use in toothpaste in particular, due to the belief that it may coat teeth and as a result, prevent remineralisation (whether it be Fluoride or Calcium Hydroxyapatite!). And we don’t want that.
Instead, we use Caprylic Capric Triglyceride (Fractionated Coconut Oil). We use lots of coconut-based ingredients in our skincare and we're totally comfortable with using these in our toothpaste as well. They do a great job keeping things moist.
Toothpaste Should Taste Good.
Have you noticed just the thought of cleaning your teeth makes you feel fresh even before you do it? (Pavlov’s Dog!) Toothpaste has to taste a certain way for most people to use it. We use Xylitol for the sweet taste (together with Stevia extract) so that kids (and adults) like using it. But sweetness isn't the main reason for its inclusion. Xylitol raises the pH in the mouth after eating, therefore helping prevent cavities from acid attack. It's also an anti-bacterial ingredient and helps prevent demineralisation. So, it's not just a pretty, sweet-tasting ingredient, but more of a hard-working multi-tasker.
We're Really Keen on Technological Firsts!
Our Mouthwash ("Moothwash") doesn't use alcohol, or other common anti-bacterial ingredients, like Benzyl Alcohol, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate or Phosphoric Acid. Instead, it uses probiotic technology through the use of a Lactobacillus Ferment to help maintain healthy oral flora, along with naturally anti-bacterial Essential Oils - Cinnamon Bud, Myrrh and Clove. The result is a healthy mouthwash that leaves a lovely taste, a little different than the minty burn you may be used to.
We would love to hear your feedback on what you think of our Dental products and are happy to answer any questions you may have after reading this. Feel free to comment below!