Toothpaste isn’t a product I’ve ever felt the need to experiment with, since almost every brand looks the same and feels the same to me, so I was intrigued when I saw Lush’s tooth products, which are completely dry – which totally confused me until I remembered that you brush your teeth beside a tap, and saliva exists, so it’ll end up wet anyway.
Lush have two tooth cleaning products: Toothy Tabs and Toothy Powder. Both products are dry, so they’re handy for travelling (no leakages or liquid allowances to worry about!).
Are Lush’s Tooth Products Too Abrasive?
First up, a bit of clarification: I’ve heard the rumour that Lush’s tooth products were too abrasive and could cause excessive tooth wearing, but once I actually Googled it, it turned out to easily busted thanks to some figures posted by Lush.
Teeth are made up of hard enamel and softer dentin, so a toothpaste’s abrasiveness is rated using its relative dentin abrasivity (RDA), with a higher RDA translating to greater abrasion, with the FDA-approved limit set at 200. The RDAs of some common toothpastes are listed here, with most whitening toothpastes at around 150-200 RDA. Lush’s Toothy products are on the low end of the scale (31-96). (I’m so glad they posted these numbers – I had a whole bunch of Moh’s hardnesses pulled up for some comparison work but this is much better data!)
Onto the products in action…
Lush Toothy Tabs
Toothy Tabs are small powdery tablets that come in a 100% recycled and recyclable plastic bottle. They used to come in a cardboard box, but I’m guessing the box got wet easily and all the tablets got ruined (contrary to my gut feeling, cardboard is usually less environmentally friendly than reused plastic!). You break a tab up between your teeth, do your best not to swallow it, then take your toothbrush and brush your teeth normally. Toothy Tabs comes in a range of flavours, including 6 new ones:
- Sparkle – lemon, grapefruit and pepper
- Miles of Smiles – triple mint (2 types of peppermint and wild mint)
- Limelight – lime, lemon, baobab fruit
- Oral Pleasure – rose oil, vanilla, daisies, passionfruit
- Dirty – spearmint and neroli
- Bling – orange and frankincense
- Boom – sea salt, aniseed, pepper, cola
I tried Sparkle and Miles of Smiles. I was a little wary of the un-toothpaste-like flavour description of Sparkle, but after using it twice I got used to it quickly. Miles of Smiles is in traditional mint territory, though it’s a lot more minty and less sweet than my usual toothpaste. My teeth felt squeaky clean after brushing.
Lush Toothy Powders
Toothy Powders work on a similar concept – you dip your wet toothbrush into the powder to pick some up, then brush normally. I found this a bit less convenient than the Toothy Tabs, and I’m pretty sure I’m going to drop the whole tub onto the floor some day. These also come in a range of interesting flavours:
- Tooth Fairy – strawberry
- Ultrablast – mint, watercress and wasabi
- Atomic – coffee, cardomom, cinnamon and clove
I’ve heard good things about Tooth Fairy, but I found that the strawberry flavour was a bit too weird and artificial for me. I enjoyed Ultrablast a lot more – it’s minty and refreshing, but not quite like a traditional toothpaste flavour. I haven’t tried Atomic yet. My teeth felt clean after brushing, but not quite as clean as with the Toothy Tabs. I suspect it’s because it’s slightly harder to use, so it’s harder to distribute the powder evenly over my teeth.