It is incredibly easy to buy a charcoal toothpaste that tastes bad, hurts your enamels, and leaves your teeth in a worse state then they previously were. I know from experience.
Charcoal is by no means some new and revolutionary substance. As a matter of fact, most barbecue lovers would immediately associate char with a juicy steak or some grilled veggies.
As a matter of fact, people have been making charcoal for over 6,000 years now.
But, it was only recently that social media platforms exploded with charcoal toothpastes and whitening products.
Let me save you major research time by telling you that YES, the proper charcoal toothpaste can be beneficial to your overall oral health. And YES, the below-listed products are top of the line in that regards!
Who Are These Reviews Going to Benefit
The below reviews are meant for the average consumer. People who struggle to find ideal oral health products for everyday use.
At Dental Dorks we do not craft reviews so they can serve dental professionals or industry scholars.
The charcoal toothpaste products reviewed below are reasonably priced and will deliver results when used correctly and patiently.
List of the Best Charcoal Toothpaste Brands
1. Twin Lotus Active Charcoal Toothpaste
Best for fresh taste!
At Dental Dorks we certainly give Twin Lotus the thumbs up. This is our favorite Charcoal toothpaste from the bunch.
I personally love the taste – very refreshing. Tongue feels and looks very clean as well if you brush it.
The minty taste is very good, maybe even a little overwhelming for me. Unlike me, however, some of the Dental Dorks’ “crew members” found it a little gritty. The taste of charcoal is certainly there, but it was not so noticeable for me.
To be honest, this is something that is persistent with all charcoal pastes on the market.
Make sure you rinse your mouth right after you brush. If you don’t get the minty aftertaste, you can always rinse with a mouthwash. I guess when it comes to taste, this is something everyone has to find out for themselves. Different people have differently developed taste receptors in their mouth.
This paste also foams a lot, which I like. It creates a pleasant bubbly feeling in your mouth. And for a moment you completely forget that your entire mouth is black!
Twin Lotus is an excellent product for people with sensitive teeth, as well as people with braces. Even though the product is developed in Thailand, it certainly is top of the line.
You will get noticeably whiter teeth within 10 days or so. Some daily acquired stains will be removed right after the first brush. But, that does not mean you will get the whitening effect after the first time you brush.
After each brush, my teeth felt soft, clean and polished. Most people are used to getting that same feeling right after they come out of an expensive dental cleaning procedure.
2. Cali Organic Coconut Oil Charcoal Toothpaste
Best for enamel protection.
Not the best product if you are looking to whiten your teeth.
All natural, vegan, fluoride-free, gluten-free, peroxide-free and made in the USA. If this doesn’t convince you to buy and try this product, I don’t know what will.
All jokes aside, this is a truly natural product that also contains no triclosan, no parabens and is safe for kids.
Cali’s toothpaste is made of a certified organic coconut oil, food grade charcoal, baking soda, and a few magic spells. This all helps you achieve a proper mouth detox, but it does not help the brand win the best tasting charcoal paste award.
The combination of oil, baking soda, and active carbon would hardly ever result in a good tasting product. However, Cali have done their best (I think) to achieve a reasonably good Pacific minty flavor. They have done so by using natural peppermint oils and xylitol.
Creating an all-natural oral health product that cleans, whitens and protects teeth while leaving a fresh minty taste is a no easy task. The vegans on our team are impressed by the natural ingredients, and rightly so. The fact that this product is also gluten-free is a big reason it has ended up on our list.
So, in all fairness, Cali have done a pretty darn good job with this toothpaste. At Dental Dorks we definitely approve of this product. Your money will be well spent here!
3. Fine Vine Charcoal Toothpaste
Fine Vine Organics is another US-based oral health brand that you may have seen on the shelves of your local drugs mart.
They advertise this more as a tooth whitening product, then anything else. I personally, found this to be better suited as a bad breath remover.
In all fairness, I would say that everything about this toothpaste is average. The taste is good, but not excellent. Too much charcoal aftertaste, in my opinion.
The natural ingredients are all there – Peppermint Oil, Baking Soda, Diatomaceous Earth, Charcoal, etc… But, they fail to create the desired foaming effect in your mouth as well as leave your gums and teeth feeling sensationally clean.
If you are a regular smoker, the flavor of this paste will likely not overpower the bad taste left after smoking a cigarette.
Do not get me wrong. This is still a very good product. This is why it has landed a spot on our list.
NOTE: Some people with sensitive skin have experienced acne breakouts around their upper and lower lips. At Dental Dorks we cannot attest to this. But, there are several reviewers who have expressed such as concern.
4. Terra Brilliant Black Charcoal Toothpaste
Best for stain removal.
This is another charcoal based paste that comes free of toxic chemicals. It is a relatively new product on the market and it is made in the USA.
The toothpaste comes with a very cool 100% biodegradable toothbrush that is made out of bamboo with nylon bristles. Besides being BPA-free, the nylon bristles are enhanced with activated charcoal. Do not ask me how, as this is all dark magic to me. Supposedly, this is done in order to increase the brightening effect of teeth. I can neither approve nor disprove such statement.
I found Terra’s paste is great for removing persistent stains. You can see positive effects in this regard within the first or second brush. Just do not rush it, give it all 2 minutes.
Other than that, this product does not taste good. My friend at Dental Dorks compared it to the taste of insect repellent. Not sure why she would know what that tastes like. I can only say that you should not buy this product for its taste.
NOTE: Some reviewers have said that the product does not contain a fair dosage of activated charcoal because it turns grey in their mouth. This is absolutely normal for the majority of charcoal active paste.
5. Colgate Charcoal Toothpaste
How can the number one household brand in the toothpaste industry miss on the next trendy thing? Well, they cannot. This is why they have come up with their own charcoal active paste.
There is a good reason Colgate is on this list, but there is also a good reason we have placed it second last. I would not actively encourage you to go out and buy this paste. Not unless you have tried the other four products above and not liked any of them.
So, does it work? Sure, it leaves your mouth feeling fresh and clean. Like any other $3 toothpaste that you will find in your local drugs store.
Does it help your teeth become shining white? No.
This is not an all-natural toothpaste like the rest on this list. You will find ingredients such as Silica, Sodium Fluoride, Silica and others. It would be nice to see Colgate come up with a more natural approach, but who am I to give marketing advice.
The paste is smooth with almost no grittiness and you only need a pea-sized amount in order to brush for 2 minutes. The regular 140g tube can easily last up to 3 months if you brush twice a day.
NOTE: Not all-natural product.
6. Vena Beauty Charcoal Toothpaste
Best for enamel and overall tooth protection.
Better known for their charcoal powder products, Vena Beauty have joined the charcoal toothpaste battle.
This is a solid product that will leave your gums feeling substantially less aggravate then before. It also has a very strong minty/clove taste that will last and leave your mouth feel fresh.
This is for sure a better-suited item for people who smoke regularly. I myself do not, but I am an enthusiastic espresso consumer. I can attest that after brushing, the taste of coffee is completely gone.
The difference between Vena Beauty’s product, and others on this list is that they do not use all natural and organic coconut oils. This is still a coconut activate paste, but not in a natural way. The coconut ingredients are artificial.
NOTE: My biggest concern with this product and brand, was that I found too many unnatural reviews about them. In other words, positive reviews on many websites by non-verified buyers. For this reason, I recommend this be your last resort charcoal toothpaste. So, buy only if extremely cheap compared to the other products on this list.
What is Activated Charcoal?
It is no black magic, nor is it some mysterious substance found in the Amazon jungles.
Activated charcoal is activated carbon that takes the form of powder. It is made from coconut shells, coal, olive pits, sawdust, bone char or petroleum coke.
In general, there are two ways to activate charcoal. One is through steam and the other is chemical activation. The basic process involves high temperatures that change the internal structure of charcoal. If you are interested in the entire process, check this article out.
Is Black the New White?
Are charcoal toothpastes going to miraculously whiten your teeth? Maybe, maybe not.
There is no supported scientific evidence that activated charcoal does any good for your teeth. Like any other abrasive, it has the potential to hurt your gums and enamel. This is why at Dental Dorks we do not recommend that you use a charcoal toothpaste for your daily brushing routines.
This does not mean that charcoal based pastes are not going to help you get a shining smile. It simply means that you will have to trust consumer reviews, rather than scientific ones.
Do Charcoal Toothpastes Work
Sure, they do. Just make sure you know what you are trying to achieve. For example, not every charcoal activated paste will whiten your teeth, or leave your mouth with extremely fresh breath.
These products are no different than the majority of everyday toothpastes. Some will help you remove persistent stains, while others will help you protect your enamel and strengthen your gums.
Using charcoal to clean teeth is by no means a new and revolutionary concept. Back in ancient Rome people were using mostly charcoal powder to achieve brighter teeth.
Are Charcoal Toothpastes Safe
The ADA (American Dental Association) warns that overusing activated charcoal products will eventually wear down your tooth enamel.
So, before you decide to jump head first into an ocean of charcoal toothpastes, do some more research.
Using such a toothpaste will likely not have any negative results after a month or so. But, at Dental Dorks we do not recommend you substitute your regular toothpaste with a charcoal active one.
Use any of the toothpastes on this list one or twice a week when and if needed.
Author: Peter Mayhew
Peter is a dental hygienist in the city of Chicago, IL. In his free time he likes to write blogs and product reviews on anything dental health related.