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Why we won’t use sulfates in our toothpaste formulations

What are sulfates?

The word “sulfates” refers to a category of chemical ingredients sourced from petroleum. Commonly found in household cleaning products, sulfates serve as surfactants to help keep the chemical ingredients in suspension. They also cause foaming. Sulfates are used in most widely available personal products, especially those used for cleaning, like body washes and shampoos. Sulfates are used in most commercial toothpastes. The most frequently used sulfate in toothpastes is sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS). It works as a surfactant. Its action is to create foam. SLS and other sulfates also create a tingling sensation in the mouth which has come to be associated with “proof that it’s working”. That “tingling” is actually mild irritation - the only thing that sensation really means is that the toothpaste is causing irritation to your tongue and gums.

The reasons we won’t use them

1

Sulfates can irritate your sensitive mouth tissue. That “tingle” you feel when using most commercial toothpastes doesn’t mean what other toothpaste makers would have you believe - that it’s working. It’s actually evidence of mild irritation. In some instances, the irritation caused by sulfates can make conditions in the mouth worsen.

2

Sulfates can harm the environment. Picture a few billion people spitting this stuff into their sinks every day. Imagine what the accumulated effect can be on fish, plants and wildlife. Shudder along with us.

3

Sulfates don’t make your toothpaste work better. We have never seen evidence that the addition of sulfates make a toothpaste more effective. What it does do is make the toothpaste foam and tingle. It adds to the perception of effectiveness. And now that you know, you won’t fall for that.

One Caution:

When you first use one of our toothpastes you may find yourself missing that little “kick” you’ve become accustomed to from the other brands. Please don’t give up on it for that reason. We promise it is working. We also promise it is doing no harm. If you stick with it a few days, we think you will find yourself a new favorite toothpaste.

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