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What is the Difference Between a Bamboo Toothbrush and a Plastic Toothbrush?

We all know about the ever-increasing plastic pollution, and governments worldwide are taking initiatives to reduce plastic usage. While we all are recommended to change our plastic toothbrush every 3 months, where does the plastic go? 
Plastic takes 1000 years to decompose; it means the first toothbrush you used as a toddler is still somewhere wandering in the sea or land.
Due to this reason, researchers started looking for a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative to a plastic toothbrush, and they came up with bamboo toothbrushes!
It’s vital that you know how both brushes differ and compare to each other. Therefore, we have listed down some of the significant differences between a bamboo toothbrush and a plastic toothbrush:

Major Differences Between a Bamboo Toothbrush and a Plastic Toothbrush

Sustainability, eco-friendliness, prices and performance are the main aspects that make a clear difference between both choices. Let’s take a look at each of the factors and look what each brush type has to offer:

1. Sustainability

Plastic Toothbrush: Plastic is an artificial thing that isn’t sustainable. Plastic toothbrushes are made from non-sustainable materials which require harmful chemicals and pesticides involvement in their production. 

It is made up of long chains of hydrogen and carbon atoms that are not renewable energy sources; hence they make plastic less to zero sustainable.

Bamboo Toothbrush: Bamboo toothbrushes have compostable, renewable and all-natural handles. Bamboo can be cultivated over and over again without the involvement of harmful pesticides and chemicals. It self-regenerates from its root without requiring larger amounts of water, labour and pesticides; hence, ending up being a sustainable choice.



2. Eco-Friendliness

Plastic Toothbrush: Plastic takes 1000 or more years to dispose of entirely and isn’t renewable. Due to the mix of different plastics, they cannot even be recycled.  Plastic toothbrushes have become an environmental issue. 

They end up in oceans making marine life at risk; therefore, plastic toothbrushes aren’t eco-friendly.

Bamboo Toothbrush: Bamboo toothbrushes are biodegradable and compostable. Their handles can easily be recycled, and therefore, they are not a potential threat to the environment. 

However, their bristles are made of nylon, which is not biodegradable, so they must be removed before disposing of the bamboo handle. Overall, bamboo is an eco-friendly choice.

3. Safety

Bamboo Toothbrush: Bamboo toothbrushes are natural and safe to use. They are not cut and processed in the presence of harmful chemicals and additives. Bamboo shoots are edible, which means they have potential health benefits also!

Plastic Toothbrush: While plastic toothbrushes cannot be processed without toxic additives, they do not provide additional health benefits. 

Why not opt for a bamboo toothbrush which is safe to use, suitable for oral health and safety for our beloved environment?


4. Antibacterial Properties

Plastic Toothbrush: Plastic is a man-made thing which is processed through pesticides and chemical. 

It doesn’t have antibacterial or antimicrobial properties. However, they dry more quickly that keeps them safe from being in contact with germs.

Bamboo Toothbrush: Bamboo has natural antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. Therefore, there's no fear of bacteria growing thereon. It also benefits your oral health by eliminating bacterial growth in your mouth.



5. Price and Performance

Plastic Toothbrush: Good quality toothbrushes cost somewhere between €3 to €9. In terms of performance, they dry more quickly and have no threat of being in contact with germs but must be appropriately covered.

Bamboo Toothbrush: They clean your mouth in the same way a plastic toothbrush does. However, bamboo toothbrushes dry slowly. Therefore, they should be stored in a way to minimize contact with germs and you can use a cloth after each usage.


Using a bamboo toothbrush is as effective as using a plastic toothbrush. The only difference is that the bamboo toothbrush has a bamboo handle that is strong, natural and has a significantly less environmental impact

Let’s take a look at the summary of the above-mentioned potential differences between a bamboo toothbrush and a plastic toothbrush:

  • Bamboo toothbrushes win over plastic toothbrushes in terms of eco-friendliness and sustainability. It’s advisable to change your toothbrush every 3 months, which means plastic toothbrushes produce more unsustainable waste. In comparison, bamboo handles can easily be recycled and renewed. 
  • Bamboo toothbrushes are biodegradable, which means they will break down; you have to remove the bristles before throwing them into the compost heat.
  • Plastic toothbrushes are non-biodegradable and aren’t sustainable. They take years and years to decompose and end up putting marine life at risk. The brush you used ten years ago, it’s possible that an ocean life swallowed it!


  • Bamboo toothbrushes are naturally antibacterial and antimicrobial that they help reduce the production of bacteria while improving oral health.
  • Plastic toothbrushes have no natural antibacterial property; hence they do not provide any additional benefits than cleaning the debris.
  • A bamboo toothbrush acts the same way a plastic toothbrush does! However, they provide additional benefits. You only have to pay one dollar to get the most out of the bamboo toothbrushes.
  • Bamboo toothbrushes are aesthetically pleasing. They have sleek and classy vibes when you want to make your bathroom look more sustainable.

Final Words

Switching choices isn’t an easy task, but you must do so when you have reasons to do so. 

While most of us are using plastic brushes from our childhood, there is no point in switching to bamboo brushes until we take our beloved environment into consideration.

They are antimicrobial and a perfect addition to a more sustainable home. 

If you are looking for a way to reduce waste production or achieve a zero-waste life, you can consider switching to bamboo toothbrushes!

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