By Contributing Writer, Erin Long
Back in January 2012 I decided it was time to make substantial changes to my lifestyle and take the plunge into natural living. I didn’t eat much processed food so I decided to revamp my personal care supplies first, starting with DIY toothpaste.
Most store-bought products are full of nasties and since skin is the largest organ and it absorbs the toxins put on it, I thought that would be a good place to begin.
I’m a DIYer by nature so I was more than excited to whip up my own products and save my health, the environment and my budget at the same time.
One of the first things I made was toothpaste. I knew baking soda was a natural whitener so when I found a highly recommended baking soda-based toothpaste I was all over it.
It was awful.
Over the next year my otherwise extremely healthy gums became sensitive and eventually started bleeding.
At my dental check-up my hygienist said the baking soda was the culprit behind all my gum problems. It was too rough and was tearing them apart.
Frustrated that my foray into natural living was actually hurting me, I walked home from my appointment dejected. Soon after I arrived at my apartment, I got on my computer and saw that Red & Honey had a new post: Homemade Clay Toothpaste. It didn’t have any baking soda!
Providence? I think so.
I made Beth’s recipe that day and chucked the baking soda stuff. I’ve used and loved it ever since.
But since that day three-and-a-half years ago I’ve learned more about natural oral care and have adapted Beth’s recipe, adding ingredients to make it even better.
The base of the recipe is the same. The consistency is great and everything in there is fantastic. No need to change any of that.
However, I added calcium/magnesium powder, trace minerals and essential oils.
Calcium/magnesium powder: Your teeth, just like your bones, need calcium to be strong. The calcium builds up your teeth and the magnesium is necessary for the calcium to do its best work.
Trace minerals: Like the cal/mag powder, it gets essential minerals right where they need to be in order to keep teeth healthy and strong.
(Buy liquid trace minerals here.)
Essential oils: When I found this post I knew I needed to switch out the peppermint extract for peppermint essential oil. While I haven’t tried all the oils recommended, I’ve seen a difference with peppermint and clove oils. I plan to try the cinnamon soon!
(Buy high-quality peppermint essential oil here, and clove essential oil here.)
While I’ve always had healthy teeth, they’ve been even healthier since making the switch to this DIY recipe. My gums don’t ever get irritated, I’ve never had tooth pain, and this is all without regular cleaning (oops…). I’ve seen three dentists since and none of them have questioned my home cleaning practices.
I’d call that a success.
If you want more info on why you should ditch store bought toothpaste and why this homemade version is so awesome, read Beth’s original post. She covers what you need to know so I didn’t bother going into it here.
Here’s how to make your own DIY Clay Toothpaste:
- 1/4 cup Bentonite clay (Available at retailers like Redmond and Amazon)
- 1/2 t real salt
- 1/3 cup near boiling water
- 2 T coconut oil
- 3 t xylitol
- 2 t calcium/magnesium powder
- 12 drops trace mineral
- 15-20 drops any combination of cinnamon, spearmint, peppermint, myrrh, or clove essential oil
Combine clay, salt and hot water. Be sure not to use a metal measuring cup as it will deactivate the clay.
Once the clay mixture has cooled to close to room temperature add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Store in a clean glad jar.
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Can i remove the water (for longer shelf life) or xylitol (i don’t need it to be sweet) ? And must i preserve it in the fridge?
Hi! I just made it and wow it looks like some yummy coffee mousse! Question, how long do you think this lasts? I plan to use it but curious if you have an idea of shelf life. Thanks!
Zi Hang Yap
Hi can I know the toothpaste after cool down will remain gel form like normal toothpaste? or become hard and we need to melt it every time we brush the teeth?
There is no need to reheat clay toothpaste. Once mixed, it keeps its clay texture. Hope that helps! 🙂
This is stupid your trying to make clay yet in order to make clay you must first buy clay. Don’t recommend this at all!?
This recipe isn’t for clay, it’s for toothpaste… maybe you forgot to actually read the post before commenting?
Thank you for the recipe, this resembles Uncle Harrys toothpaste (the brand) and I appreciate that you posted it. Its far far from stupid lol
Glad you like it! Thanks for the kind comment. 🙂
I’m definitely going to try this, thanks. Do you know what the shelf life is for this? Do I need to store it in a dark glass jar too?
I’m gonna have to try this. Does it remove stains at all? Is the xylitol for sweetening purposes only? Could I use stevia or erythritol instead?
I’m not really sure about the stains, Abigail. It hasn’t been a concern to me. However, I do have a post on how to whiten teeth naturally. Here it is: https://redandhoney.com/5-ways-naturally-whiten-teeth-without-harsh-chemicals/
Yes, the xylitol is just for sweetening. If you try an alternative, let me know how it goes!
If I don’t have xylitol or stevia are there any other alternatives that you would suggest?
I don’t know of any good subs for those. Sorry.