Brushing your teeth is a fundamental part of your daily routine — something you’ve likely been doing in pretty much the same way for as long as you can remember. And since you were a little kid, toothpaste itself has also probably looked the same, at least once you grew out of the bright pink bubblegum flavors or Spongebob-decorated tubes.
Now, however, it’s 2020, and toothpaste can be made in the form of solid tablets. That’s right. I’m talking about toothpaste that you bite instead of squirt onto your brush.
Chewable toothpaste may raise eyebrows at first, but the liquid-free tablets are stored in recyclable glass jars that are meant to help minimize the dental care industry’s environmental footprint — definitely a cause worth getting behind.
I tried out the toothpaste tablets from the brand Bite, which are not only eco-friendly, but also 100 percent vegan, cruelty free, and gluten free. They come in three flavors — fresh mint, mint charcoal, and berry twist — all of which have hundreds or thousands of rave reviews. The jars contain a four-month supply, and there is a convenient auto-refill system for when you run out.
The first thing I noticed about Bite’s products is that they come in super cute, Instagram-worthy packaging with a simple black-and-white label. The tablets themselves look like white, slightly chalky breath mints and give off a strong natural mint smell.
As for actually using the Bite bits, I found the experience to be more difficult to adjust to than I expected. The instructions on the jar say to place one piece in your mouth, bite down, and brush with a wet toothbrush. However, I still had questions. I wasn’t sure which teeth to bite with, and how to evenly distribute the powdery-substance once I broke the tablet.
I would describe the consistency as chalky at first, and then more liquidy than traditional toothpaste as the substance mixed with my saliva and the water from my toothbrush. The first time I tried it, I didn’t fully dissolve the tablet right away, so bits of it got stuck in my teeth. After a couple of tries, though, I did start to get the hang of it. Ultimately, I brushed with Bite a total of six times over the course of three days.
The flavors of both the regular mint and mint charcoal left my mouth tasting fresh and clean long after brushing. I also did feel like my teeth looked extra white after using Bite. By far the biggest pro was the practicality of the single-serving tablet. I recently learned that most people use way too much toothpaste when they brush their teeth, so Bite’s tiny tablets are a handy solution.
Once I got past the initial learning curve, though, I found it was slightly difficult to evenly spread the product on my teeth, and it never formed the paste consistency I have gotten used to. I also felt like a lot of it ended up on my tongue.
Additionally, Bite’s tablets are fluoride-free — but fluoride is also an important ingredient in most toothpastes because it helps remineralize your enamel and strengthen your teeth.
Bite’s products do contain an ingredient called n-HA, or nano-hydroxyapatite, described on the jar as a non-toxic fluoride alternative. Still, it is worth noting that the American Dental Association only approves of toothpaste containing fluoride (and they have not yet approved toothpaste tablets at all).
Overall, the aesthetically-pleasing and mess-free toothpaste offerings from Bite are worth considering if you are interested in making your oral hygiene routine more sustainable. Just know that it may take some getting used to.