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What Are Bamboo Toothbrush Bristles Made From


Get to know bamboo toothbrush bristles

With the burgeoning conscience of consumers regarding environmental impacts of certain everyday items, eco-friendly products like bamboo toothbrushes have become more popular.

Most toiletries are made from plastic and if you scan your entire bathroom right now, you will be surprised how many of the items you use everyday have plastic-free alternatives. Fortunately, itís easy to swap them out for something more eco-friendly. For instance, you can replace your plastic toothbrush with one that is made from bamboo.

Bamboo toothbrushes are made from bamboo which is considered the go-to material by many eco-brands and for good reasons. Bamboo is a highly sustainable and renewable resource. Most bamboo growers do not use artificial irrigation nor do they use fertilisers and pesticides.

Also, bamboo is fully compostable which means at the end of its life, it can simply go to your garden compost and buried in the ground until it goes breaks down naturally.


Just like plastic toothbrushes, the bristles on most bamboo toothbrushes are made from nylon material which is a synthetic fiber that is sturdy and flexible. These bristles are responsible in keeping your teeth and gums clean and healthy.

Before the 1930s, the most common material for toothbrush bristles was pig hair and after that, nylon was invented making it a relatively modern material.

At the present, bristles of toothbrushes are made from nylon 6. These types of nylon are expensive to recycle thus, will generally end up in a landfill.

But if you look at the overall size of your toothbrush, the head which contains the bristles are only a tiny part. This shows that you can save it from the bin and greatly reduce plastic waste.

Moreover, a lot of manufacturers today are crafting bristles from a mixture of nylon and other materials. These includes charcoal and bamboo. The good news is that it also means that the amount of petroleum used is even less.

However, there are still toothbrushes that are made with pig hair today. Although they are 100% biodegradable, they are still not the famous choice because the pigs hair are hollow which can increase the risk of bacteria. Next, they are certainly not vegan-friendly and last, the bristles tend to be firmer that can damage gums and enamel.

Fortunately, it is now possible to buy toothbrushes that are free from petroleum that adds more options in promoting waste-free living. One amazing company is Hydrophil. They have developed a bristle made from 100% renewable raw materials that utilizes castor oil instead of mineral oil.

Even if the bristles they have manufactured canít be composted under household conditions, they are at least not made from fossil fuels. Only the handle can be composted and the bristles must be removed first before you pop it in the compost.

Would this mean they are harmful to the environment?

While the inclusion of nylon means many bamboo toothbrushes are not 100% compostable they are still far better for the environment than a toothbrush made entirely from plastic.

What makes bamboo toothbrushes even better is their manufacturing process. Why? Because it is a lot gentler on the planet as bamboo grows without the need for human intervention. Unlike plastic toothbrush, the process of turning the bamboo into a handle requires less energy and machinery.

RELATED: How Long Do Bamboo Toothbrushes Last

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