The reality is, toothbrushes can produce a lot of plastic waste — over 400 million manual brushes are sent to landfills in the U.S. in a single year alone, according to Colgate — and unfortunately, these plastics often end up in waterways and harm all the little and not-so-little sea creatures. More sustainable options, like bamboo toothbrushes, have definitely gained popularity within the last few years. Now, Colgate is adding another option to the bunch with its Keep toothbrush that’s composed of 80 percent less plastic than its traditional tools.
How did the brand do it? This brush comes with two parts: a recyclable aluminum handle shaped like an infinity symbol and a soft-bristled disposable brush head with a tongue and cheek scraper, made of plastics and other materials. Therefore, the plastic is solely located in the head instead of taking up the whole body of the brush.
There are two options for heads: deep clean and whitening. The deep clean head has “floss-tip bristles”, meaning that they are tapered rather than flat to help reach small crevices (but they aren’t meant to replace actual flossing). Similarly, the whitening head has “spiral-polishing bristles,” which are designed to help remove stains and brighten teeth. I put both to the test to see how well they could clean my teeth.
I’ve used bamboo toothbrushes before but sometimes felt the bristles weren’t firm enough for the level of clean I wanted. Oftentimes, after a few weeks or so, the bristles would look bent and worn out, so I was curious to see how this brush would perform.