Is Toothpaste Safe? Plus, a Homemade Toothpaste Recipe

Have you checked the label on your toothpaste lately? Sure, they advertise that it will fight germs for up to 12 hours, helping to fight plaque and tartar and prevent gingivitis. But the ingredients may be more harmful than you think.

Is Toothpaste Safe? Plus, a Homemade Toothpaste Recipe | Real Food RN

Have you checked the label on your toothpaste lately? Sure, they advertise that it will fight germs for up to 12 hours, helping to fight plaque and tartar and prevent gingivitis, while also whitening your teeth and giving you minty, fresh breath. But, there is something they are NOT telling you about that pretty blue and white swirl on your toothbrush.

Many of the ingredients in that little innocuous tube are more harmful than you know. Let’s take a gander, shall we?

Toothpaste ingredients typically consist of:

1. Mild Abrasives (to remove debris and residual surface stains)

Examples include:

  • Calcium carbonate: a form of calcium, can cause skin irritation
  • Dehydrated silica gels: the stuff found in those little packets in your shoe box
  • Hydrated aluminum oxides: contains aluminum, a known neurotoxin
  • Magnesium carbonate: a form of magnesium
  • Phosphate salts: phosphate salts can irritate the digestive tract and cause stomach upset, diarrhea, constipation, and other problems

2. Fluoride (to strengthen tooth enamel and remineralize tooth decay)

This one is a hot topic of controversy! We personally believe that fluoride is harmful and filter it out of our water using this filter. I have read up on fluoride extensively and when I came across an article explaining it as having adverse effects on children’s neurodevelopment, I decided that we do not need fluoride anywhere in our house or personal care products.

3. Humectants (to prevent water loss in the toothpaste)

Examples include:

  • Glycerol: when taken by mouth, glycerol can cause side effects including headaches, dizziness, bloating, nausea, vomiting, thirst, and diarrhea
  • Propylene glycol: (aka antifreeze) propylene glycol has caused skin and mucous membrane irritation when given orally. It has induced skin sensitization reactions in several individuals and when taken orally, it can also induce skin rashes. By the oral route or by injection, propylene glycol has resulted in severe effects on the CNS and metabolic disruptions. (source)
  • Sorbitol: a sugar alcohol

4. Flavoring Agents, such as saccharin and other sweeteners to provide taste. Saccharin has been linked to bladder cancer in rat studies.

5. Thickening Agents or Binders (to stabilize the toothpaste formula) — these are generally benign, but I listed them anyway.

Examples include:

  • Mineral colloids
  • Natural gums: depends on which gum is used
  • Seaweed colloids
  • Synthetic cellulose: this is wood pulp that is processed, dried, and then bleached. Yum!

6. Detergents (to create foaming action)

Examples include:

  • Sodium lauryl sulfate: EWG Rating. Dr. Mercola really goes into detail about this one HERE
  • Sodium N-Lauryl sarcosinate: EWG Rating. It may enhance the penetration of other ingredients through the skin

So, there you have it. A general breakdown of what might be in the toothpaste you are buying at the store. Even some of the “natural” toothpastes contain these, so always check your labels. OR, make your own homemade toothpaste! Making your own homemade toothpaste is not only easy (and fun!), but it is also cost effective. Many of these ingredients you will already have in your cupboard and this batch will last you a while!

If you do not want to make your own, HERE is my absolute favorite healthy toothpaste! 

Peppermint Homemade Toothpaste Recipe


  • 1/2 cup coconut oil — where to find
  • 1/3 cup baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp magnesium and calcium powder
  • 1 tsp non-GMO xylitol — where to find
  • 10 -15 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 10 drops Spearmint essential oils (optional)
  • Toothpaste Tube — we use these because they are easy to fill and BPA free


  • If your coconut oil is in a solid state, melt it into liquid
  • In a small bowl combine all ingredients
  • Add peppermint to your preference. Some like it REALLY minty! Add Thieves if you want to give your paste a boost
  • Put into an empty toothpaste tube
  • Use as needed to brush your teeth and have minty fresh breath!

Well, what do you think? Will YOU make your own homemade toothpaste? Let me know in the comments below!

CLICK HERE to Pin this Post

Is Toothpaste Safe? Plus, a Homemade Toothpaste Recipe | Real Food RN
Order supplements through my Fullscript store.

More to Love

Homemade Citrus Scouring Scrub

Homemade Citrus Scouring Scrub

I have created a wonderful cleanser that not only is non-toxic but works when you need to clean tables and…
Easy DIY Recipes for Household Cleaners You Can Make with What You Have in Your Pantry

Easy DIY Recipes for Household Cleaners You Can Make with What You Have in Your Pantry

Did you know your pantry holds everything you need to clean your home? This is especially helpful to know because…
Homemade Cleopatra Face Cream Tallow Balm Recipe

Homemade Cleopatra Face Cream Tallow Balm Recipe

Legend has it that Cleopatra used a variety of different beauty rituals, and when you read up on her techniques,…

5 Replies to “Is Toothpaste Safe? Plus, a Homemade Toothpaste Recipe”

  1. Where would I find magnesium powder? Is it necessary for the toothpaste recipe?

    Also, I have some calcium powder I made using clean and dried eggshells. I got the powder consistency by putting the crushed shells into an electric coffee grinder.
    Would this work for calcium powder?

    Thank you.
    PS: I just sent you a join request for your Facebook group. This is my first visit to your website and it looks great! 🙂

  2. The only thing about using coconut oil to make tooth paste is it clogs your pipes. So be sure to spit it in the trash or outside. I made my own recipe and it happened to me! 🙁

  3. Hi Kate!
    I’d like to make your homemade toothpaste.
    What magnesium and calcium powder do you use and where do you buy it?
    Thanks a lot!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

5 ways to get yourself on a healthy path, today.

This FREE ebook offers 5 quick tips to getting on a road to health, today. Inside, you will find valuable resources to help and inspire you along the way.

Get your FREE copy of this great resource now!

    By submitting your email for this ebook, you also agree to be signed up for the Real Food RN newsletter and other Real Food RN emails. Your information is never sold or given away by Real Food RN.