Shopping for products like toothpaste and water bottles can hardly be considered a pleasure, it’s more of a necessity. But regardless of your feelings towards shopping, it remains an activity that you’re going to have to do. You might as well make the most out of it.
The process can become less painful and more manageable if you plan ahead and target your energy towards the important decisions regarding what to shop for – essentially, what should you buy? Don’t worry about the small, insignificant details when there are bigger fish to fry – like finding the best toothpaste on store shelves.
Our 5 Favorite Overall Toothpaste
Best Consumer Reports Toothpaste In 2022
1. Sensodyne Pronamel Gentle Teeth Whitening Enamel Toothpaste
|Item Weight||12 Ounces|
|Item Dimensions LxWxH||1.45 x 6.56 x 5.16 inches|
|Age Range (Description)||Adult|
Sensodyne Pronamel Gentle Teeth Whitening Enamel Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth is an enamel protection toothpaste that effectively cleans and polishes away stains for brighter, healthier teeth. Formulated to reharden and strengthen enamel, this anticavity toothpaste boosts calcium delivery, aiding in the overall remineralization process of your teeth.
Sensodyne Pronamel Gentle Whitening toothpaste offers all the benefits of a regular anticavity toothpaste as it protects you from acid erosion caused by everyday acidic foods and drinks. This sensitive whitening toothpaste 3 pack protects your teeth from pain triggers such as cold, heat, acids, sweets or contact, providing sensitivity relief and lasting sensitivity protection as it gently restores the natural whiteness of your teeth.
For best results, brush for two minutes, twice daily. Build a stronger foundation with Pronamel, so your teeth can look and feel their best.
- Three 4 oz tubes of Sensodyne Pronamel Gentle Teeth Whitening Enamel Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth, to Reharden and Strengthen Enamel – Packaging May Vary
- Acid erosion toothpaste that delivers minerals into the enamel layer to protect your teeth from acid erosion caused by acidic foods and drinks
- Sensitivity toothpaste that protects your teeth from pain triggers like temperature changes, acids, sweets or contact
- Strong enamel toothpaste that offers effective protection against cavities and improves your overall tooth enamel health
- Sensitive enamel toothpaste specially formulated to gently polish away stains, restoring the natural whiteness of your teeth
- Refreshing sensitivity toothpaste for clean teeth and fresh breath
- Brush for two minutes, twice daily
2. Tom’s of Maine Fluoride-Free Antiplaque & Whitening Natural Toothpaste
|Product Benefits||Whitening; Tartar Control; Plaque Removal; Bad Breath Treatment|
|Material Type Free||Dye Free, Microbeads Free, Triethanolamine (TEA) Free, Sodium Laureth Sulfate Free, Polyethylene Glycol Free, Animal Fat Free, Paraben Free, Formaldehyde Free, Propylparaben Free, Formaldehyde Donor Free, Artificial Sweeteners Free, Butylparaben Free, Mineral Oil Free, Triclosan Free, Phthalate Free, Gluten Free, Artificial Color Free, Diethanolamine Free, Artificial Flavors FreeDye Free, Microbeads Free, Triethanolamine (TEA) Free, Sodium Laureth Sulfate Free, Polyethylene Glycol Free, Animal Fat Free, Paraben Free, Formaldehyde Free, Propylparaben Free, Formald|
|Item Weight||0.68 Pounds|
Natural Toothpaste Brand, (Nielsen Jan. 2021) Fight plaque and whiten teeth with Tom’s of Maine Fluoride-Free Antiplaque & Whitening Toothpaste. This fluoride-free toothpaste uses naturally derived ingredients to prevent tartar buildup and remove surface stains.
These ingredients include zinc citrate that is sourced from zinc, a naturally occurring mineral, and xylitol, a natural ingredient derived from birch trees or corn. Plus, the natural flavor of peppermint will make you look forward to brushing. Order Tom’s of Maine Toothpaste, and try their other natural dental care products. Tom’s of Maine products use only ingredients that meet its stewardship standards for natural, sustainable and responsible, helping empower families to live more naturally.
Tom’s of Maine is a Certified B-Corp and meets the highest standards of social and environmental performance, as well as public transparency. We donate 10% of our profits each year to national and local charitable organizations promoting health, education, and the environment. A portion of our giving is also made through limited product donations.
- Two 5.5-ounce tubes of Tom’s of Maine Natural Fluoride-Free Antiplaque and Whitening Toothpaste in Peppermint Flavor
- Fight tartar buildup with antiplaque formula
- Helps remove surface stains for a brighter, whiter smile
- Ingredients derived from nature to leave your mouth feeling fresh
- Contains no artificial sweeteners, preservatives, colors or flavors and is not tested on animals
3. Crest 3D White Brilliance Toothpaste
|Item Dimensions LxWxH||6.06 x 1.61 x 5.79 inches|
|Age Range (Description)||Adult|
Our most advanced 3D White Toothpaste yet. Crest 3D White Brilliance toothpaste whitens teeth by removing up to 100% of stains in 5 days, with 24 hour stain protection when paired with twice daily brushing. Contains fluoride to fight against cavities. For best results, pair with a Crest 3D White toothbrush or 3D White electric toothbrush head. Among single tube 3D White toothpastes
4. Davids Nano Hydroxyapatite Natural Toothpaste
|Age Range (Description)||Adult|
Davids is a premium natural toothpaste, made in California, with a focus on sustainability. Davids uses naturally sourced and naturally derived ingredients to safely & effectively whiten teeth, reduce plaque, and freshen breath. Naturally derived abrasives assist with the brushing action to help remove surface stains creating whiter teeth and a clean and healthy mouth. Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) is used to neutralize acids, promoting good oral hygiene.
Premium mint oil from various mint growing regions across the USA are blended together to create an amazing mint flavor and freshen breath. Davids went out of their way to use 98% USA Origin Ingredients to produce the highest quality toothpaste possible and to support USA jobs! Discover why so many people are switching to Davids!
- Hydroxyapatite (n-HA) is used to reduce sensitivity by plugging the passageways (tubules) into the tooth nerves.
- Whitening, Antiplaque, Mouth & Gum Detox, Enamel Remineralization.
- Fluoride Free, Sulfate Free (no SLS), EWG VERIFIED / Non-Toxic Clean Formula.
- Fresh Peppermint, No Artificial Flavors/ Colors/ Preservatives.
- 5.25 OZ tube (compare to others), Made in USA
5. Colgate Cavity Protection Toothpaste with Fluoride
|Product Benefits||Cavity Protection|
|Item Weight||0.45 Pounds|
|Item Dimensions LxWxH||9 x 5.5 x 3 inches|
Colgate Cavity Protection Toothpaste with Fluoride provides trusted cavity protection for the entire family. Formulated with active fluoride, this toothpaste is clinically proven to help strengthen teeth and leave your mouth feeling fresh and clean. This Colgate toothpaste is ADA (American Dental Association) accepted. It has been trusted by dentists and parents globally for over 45 years.
- Fluoride toothpaste fights and protects against cavities for healthier teeth
- Clinically proven to strengthen teeth enamel and cleans teeth thoroughly
- Anti-cavity toothpaste with a great mint taste leaves the mouth feeling fresh and clean; the mint ingredient is sourced from American mint farmers
- American Dental Association (ADA) accepted and trusted by dentists for over 45 years
- Gluten-free toothpaste formula
- Pack of 6 toothpaste tubes with 6 ounces in each; A total of 36 ounces
What to Look for in a Toothpaste
It’s not the flashy lael that makes your teeth flashy and healthy, it’s the ingredients in the tube. Per the ADA, other active ingredients can help improve tooth sensitivity, whiten teeth, reduce gingivitis or protect against tartar build-up, or prevent enamel erosion or bad breath.4 Here are a few of the active ingredients to look for.
Fluoride: This is the single most important ingredient in any toothpaste. It “The main thing that the toothpaste adds to the brushing equation is fluoride. Fluoride is going to be the primary active ingredient in the toothpaste,” says Dr. Manz. Dr. Kennedy adds, “[Sodium flouride] is a safe way to strengthen your teeth and to prevent tooth decay or cavities.”5
Dr. Manz adds, “The fluoride in toothpaste prevents the mineralization of the enamel due to acid attack from food and drink. If you have fluoride in your water and fluoride in the teeth from toothpaste, then the enamel remineralizes again more rapidly and you don’t create that long-lasting demineralization which leads to cavities. The simplest explanation is that fluoride makes the teeth stronger.”
There are a few different types of fluoride that are commonly found in toothpastes, but stannous fluoride and sodium fluoride are some of the most popular. Stannous fluoride acts as an antibacterial agent, which can help eliminate bad breath and plaque buildup.6 It can also help reduce tooth hypersensitivity when brushing. Sodium fluoride, another common ingredient found in toothpastes, can help protect teeth from cavity formation.
Most fluoride-based toothpastes contain a concentration of at least 1,000 parts per million (ppm) of fluoride. For people with severe tooth decay, a dentist may recommend a toothpaste with a concentration of up to 5,000 ppm.
Surfactant: If you see a scary-sounding term like sodium lauryl sulfate on the label, it’s not a cause for concern, per Dr. Manz. “Sodium lauryl sulfate which makes the toothpaste have that foaming action,” he says. “If you go to Europe, for instance, their toothpastes are very flat and they don’t have that foaming action. Americans who try that toothpaste find it very unpalatable. So, the foaming makes it palatable, makes it a little bit more pleasurable for us to brush which is important so that we do it.”
Hydrogen Peroxide: Whitening Hydrogen peroxide removes both surface and intrinsic stains, leaving noticeably brighter, whiter teeth.
Xylitol: Another beneficial ingredient often found in toothpaste is xylitol, which acts like a sweetener to make the product taste good. “Not only does it make your toothpaste taste good, but it is toxic to bad bacteria that cause tooth decay,”7
Abrasives: “Toothpastes may also contain calcium carbonate, silicate aluminum carbonates, or aluminum hydroxide; those things are abrasives,” says Dr. Manz. “I think most of the data really indicates that the action of the bristles of the toothbrush on our tooth is what really removes the majority of the plaque in the calculus.” These are cleaning and polishing agents added to toothpaste to remove surface stains and break up bacterial colonies. According to the ADA, toothpaste with a relative dentin abrasion of 250 or below is safe to use for daily brushing with appropriate techniques.4
If you don’t like the taste of toothpaste, chances are, you aren’t going to want to use it. So, if the smell or taste of tea tree oil or mint doesn’t appeal to you, consider avoiding a product in which it is an ingredient. Unfortunately, the only real way to do a toothpaste taste test is by trying it out. Luckily, most retailers have return policies.
Specific Dental Concerns
If you have any special dental needs—for example bleeding gums or sensitive teeth—you should choose a toothpaste formulated for that reason. Many people who fall into this category find traditional toothpastes too harsh for their needs.
“Those patients with sensitive teeth should look for brands like Sensodyne that incorporate potassium nitrate into their toothpaste formulas, as potassium nitrate helps to soothe inflamed nerves,” Dr. Kunen suggests. If you’re unsure which toothpaste will best fit your individual needs, ask your dentist for guidance.
Although the ingredients in toothpastes should be your top consideration, it is also important to make sure that you’re brushing your teeth correctly with a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. “Often patients rinse with water right after brushing. But when you do this, you actually rinse off all the active ingredients that we just talked about,” Dr. Kennedy says. Instead, she recommends spitting out the excess toothpaste and leaving the rest of the product to linger around the teeth. “You want to leave the teeny, tiny bubbles that you’ll see present around your teeth if you smile,” she says. “Those bubbles have those ingredients that are active and they’ll be able to strengthen your teeth and work to keep the bacteria in your mouth healthy or even help whiten your teeth at the same time.”
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Does Toothpaste Expire, And Can you Use Expired Toothpaste?
Toothpaste does come with an expiration date stamped on the end of the tube. It’s usually two years out from the date of purchase and plenty of time to brush through every ounce before the date rolls around. Expired toothpaste may harden over time, making it harder to use effectively.8
How Much Toothpaste Should you Use When Brushing?
The recommended amount of toothpaste to use when brushing varies by age. The ADA recommends that children use a smear of toothpaste (the size of a grain of rice) from the time the first tooth erupts until they’re three years old.9 From three years on up through adulthood, they can use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. These small amounts help limit children’s exposure to ingested fluoride, to keep it to safe levels.
As tempting as it may be to squeeze on a large swirl of toothpaste-like on the commercials, adults don’t actually need anymore. “For adults, you want to use about a pea-sized amount of toothpaste,” Dr. Kennedy says. “Remember, it is not about how much toothpaste that you’re putting in there because you’re going to spit all the extra out. It is about allowing it to stay on after you have brushed your teeth so that all the active ingredients have time to do the good work that they are designed to do inside your mouth.”
How Does the ADA Choose Which Products Make the Seal of Acceptance?
The ADA has a set of requirements that toothpastes must meet to earn the seal of acceptance.10 The ADA uses the requirements listed in the ANSI/ADA Standard No. 130 for Dentifrices – Requirements, Test Methods and Marking analyze each product, and uses additional lab studies to determine whether or not a toothpaste is fit for the seal. While the process of getting a toothpaste accepted is extensive, one general requirement of all products on the seal of acceptance list is that they must all contain fluoride.
Choosing a toothpaste will be a difficult choice for most people. You will want to find one that meets your personal standards. You are also going to want to pick the type of toothpaste that you are able to buy easily. Again, choosing the best brand is not an easy task because different people have different requirements when it comes to owning a toothpaste.