Hello again, lovely blog readers! It’s been a hot minute since I’ve written anything on here, and I lay the blame squarely on these two beautiful distractions:
Quite a while back I was gifted some bamboo toothbrushes and a bamboo travel toothbrush case from Zero Waste Cartel, and now that it’s been a few months of my family and I using them I thought I’d better pop on here and let you know how we like them. Spoiler alert: with some caveats - we really liked them!
I’ve tried a few brands of bamboo toothbrushes before, and they’ve all had their positive qualities as well as their drawbacks, so let me get the negatives out of the way first.
The main issue I find common to zero waste and eco friendly products is cost, and these toothbrushes are unfortunately no exception. Although - as of writing this - this pack of 10 brushes I was gifted is currently on a 50% off sale, but the normal price is $41.00, and that doesn’t include shipping. I did see on their website that if your order is over $75 the shipping is free, but it wasn’t clear if that would apply to international orders or not. For me buying things from the USA comes with the added challenge of the exchange rate. If I were to buy these toothbrushes, they would cost me $54.16 before taxes and shipping (which would all also have the exchange rate applied to it). Some people might be able to afford to spend more than $5 per toothbrush, but that’s not my reality at the moment.
I do want to reiterate that this cost issue isn’t specific to Zero Waste Cartel, so don’t necessarily take this to be a negative point aimed specifically at them. Unfortunately, there are loads no of eco products that are out of my family’s reach financially. I hope that as plastic becomes less common, that some of these alternatives can come down in price so that everyone can afford to be good to the planet.
I do have to say that if the cost wasn’t an issue I would absolutely buy these toothbrushes, because I think they are great! I also had a look at the rest of the products on the website, and it certainly would be easy to spend enough to qualify for free shipping since so many of the products looked useful and well constructed. Zero Waste Cartel has been very thoughtful about their approach to packaging, and I love the little quips all over it like ‘open to save the planet’! They also donate to tree planting organizations with each purchase, and it lets you know that right on the front of the box. This is truly a product you can feel good about buying.
The only plastic involved here is the nylon bristles. When I asked if they were working on a completely biodegradable version, I was assured that they were hopeful one would be developed, but that in the meantime they are going with the bristle that is most recommended by dentists. I am happy with this answer because dental health is so important - I remember hearing that good dental hygiene could add four years to your life! I’m glad they are considering the quality of their product as well as wether or not it is eco-friendly. Sometimes health concerns trump whether or not you can compost something, in my opinion.
You can also make sure these bristles see their share of use because after you switch to a new one, you can still use that old toothbrush for cleaning! I always keep an old one in with the rest of my cleaning brushes. They are really great for cleaning jewelry and other delicate pieces too, since they are a soft nylon.
I also really like the travel toothbrush holder (also made of bamboo). Since receiving the brushes and writing this review I’ve actually had the chance to use it a lot and take it on a few trips. I was initially concerned about mould. I know there are claims that bamboo has anti-bacterial qualities and whatnot, but I still wasn’t convinced that putting a wet piece of wood in a dark, semi enclosed space was going to go well. I’m happy to say that I was completely wrong, and have had no issues at all with mould or anything funky like that.
These toothbrushes have worked well for all three members of my family who need them (Baby Forager still has no teeth). They are very durable - we’ve been using the same ones for a couple months now and are just starting to feel the need to switch to new ones. One super tiny drawback is that since we are all using the same package, we’ve had to use a sharpie and make little marks on them to tell who’s is who’s, but we’ve done this for every brand of bamboo toothbrush we’ve tried. I noticed that there are specific kids toothbrushes for sale by Zero Waste Cartel, and while that would be nice, these brushes are on the smaller side compared to some other brands we’ve tried (smaller both in handle size and bristle area), so we’ve found using them for a pre-school aged child hasn’t been a problem.
All said, I absolutely would recommend these toothbrushes. For my family we will continue to buy what we can afford, but when it fits in the budget we do try to buy bamboo toothbrushes instead of conventional plastic ones. Zero Waste Cartel is definitely a company I would consider ordering in the future for any eco friendly product needs.
Zero Waste Cartel provided me with a set of 10 bamboo toothbrushes and a bamboo travel case free of charge in exchange for this review. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.