Key points


  • Charcoal toothpaste is a very popular teeth whitening product, but studies show that it harms your teeth more than it does them any good. Charcoal toothpaste doesn’t whiten the teeth, it simply removes extrinsic stains caused by coloured foods and drinks. It also removes plaque build-up, but so does any other toothpaste. 
  • Charcoal toothpaste is very abrasive to the point that it can damage your enamel and irritate the gums. Its extreme abrasiveness can also cause tooth sensitivity. There’s also not enough evidence on the long-term effects of charcoal toothpaste use. 
  • Because charcoal is so abrasive, it can make your teeth look even more yellow instead of whitening them. It damages the enamel and exposes the layer of dentin located underneath the enamel. There’s also not enough information on how charcoal reacts with dental restoration materials, and some dentists suspect that it may even stain them. 
  • Most brands of charcoal toothpaste don’t add fluoride to the formula, which is very important for protecting the enamel. If you want to whiten your teeth while also taking care of your enamel, you should opt for safer options such as the Icy Bear Diamond Dust Whitening Toothpaste. This product is clinically proven to whiten the teeth without causing any harm.

Today, charcoal is one of the most trendy ingredients that manufacturers add to a variety of personal care products such as toothpaste, face masks, and scrubs. Charcoal toothpaste fans claim that it makes their breath smell fresh and whitens their teeth. But while this product has gained a lot of attention on the market, some studies have called into question whether it actually works. So keep on reading and discover all the pros and cons of using charcoal-infused toothpaste.

What is Charcoal?

Activated charcoal is a fine grain powder made from substances like wood, coconut shells, and other heat-oxidised sources. Charcoal is commonly used for medical purposes to eliminate toxins because of its highly absorbent properties. However, companies have started using this ingredient as a whitening agent relatively recently, even though charcoal was used for teeth whitening back in ancient times. Many people believe that charcoal is supposed to remove teeth stains, but is it actually effective?

Is Charcoal Toothpaste Effective?

Activated charcoal can remove surface stains on the teeth. However, there’s a difference between effectively whitening the teeth and removing surface stains. Charcoal may help to remove extrinsic stains, such as those caused by coffee, wine, tea, and other pigmented foods and beverages. However, there’s no evidence that charcoal can remove intrinsic stains that are located below the enamel. This means that even if charcoal toothpaste can help get rid of some stains on your teeth, you still likely won’t be able to achieve the desired shade.


It’s also important to understand the difference between mechanical and chemical teeth whitening. Chemical teeth whitening uses chemicals to get rid of intrinsic and extrinsic stains, while mechanical whitening uses abrasive materials to remove surface stains. If you want to whiten your teeth safely and effectively, you need to look for whitening products that use effective chemical whiteners and mildly abrasive ingredients such as diamond dust used in the Icy Bear whitening toothpaste instead of harsh abrasives like charcoal. 


All in all, scientific evidence currently available on the effectiveness of charcoal as a teeth whitener shows that it cleans the teeth on some level, but it’s still not enough to consider charcoal an effective whitening agent. 

Charcoal For Detoxing

Charcoal toothpaste manufacturers often claim that their product can “detoxify” the mouth and get rid of bad breath. But all it does is remove plaque and food particles that lead to bad breath, and so does any other toothpaste. Plus, toxins are not accumulated in our mouth and gums since the detoxifying function is performed by our liver and kidneys, so there’s no way for any type of toothpaste to detoxify the body.

Is Charcoal Toothpaste Safe? 

As of now, more research is needed on the effects that prolonged use of charcoal toothpaste can have on our teeth and gums. However, we already know that there are more safety concerns than advantages when it comes to using charcoal toothpaste.


First of all, charcoal toothpaste is very abrasive and thus not recommended for daily use. Plus, using abrasives like charcoal on your teeth can damage the enamel. This will expose the layer of dentin located underneath, which has a dark yellow colour, causing your teeth to look even more yellow. Charcoal can also cause or exacerbate tooth sensitivity.


Another downside of this product is that most charcoal toothpaste doesn’t contain fluoride, which is essential for strengthening the enamel and preventing cavities and tooth decay. In fact, there’s some evidence that charcoal toothpaste use can cause tooth decay.


Besides not being very effective at removing tooth stains, charcoal can actually cause them since black charcoal particles may accumulate in the cracks and crevices in your teeth. 


Additionally, there haven’t been enough studies on how charcoal impacts dental restoration materials, and thus, you can’t be certain that the charcoal won’t damage your veneers, crowns, bridges, and white resin fillings.


Finally, a review published in 2019 in the British Dental Journal concluded that charcoal doesn’t protect against tooth decay, and scientific evidence that supports other health claims associated with this ingredient is very limited. Thus, charcoal toothpaste will likely do you more harm than good.

Should I Use Charcoal Toothpaste? 

There are many reasons why you should skip charcoal toothpaste and opt for other toothpaste and teeth whitening products instead:


  • Charcoal is very abrasive, which means that it not only wears out the enamel but also causes your teeth to become sensitive and irritates the gums. Thus, it can make your teeth appear even more yellow, not to mention that it can also cause you to develop sensitivity to acidic foods and extreme temperatures.
  • Charcoal doesn’t whiten the teeth, it simply removes extrinsic stains, just like any other toothpaste.
  • Charcoal toothpaste doesn’t contain fluoride, which is a vital ingredient if you want to prevent tooth decay and keep your enamel healthy.
  • Charcoal may stain dental restorations such as white fillings, veneers, bridges, and crowns.
  • The long-term effects of using charcoal toothpaste are still unknown.

How To Whiten Your Teeth Safely And Effectively?

When looking for teeth whitening products, you have plenty of different options that are more effective and safe than charcoal toothpaste. Professional whitening products like whitening toothpaste and whitening strips that have been developed by a dentist are far more effective. We recommend trying products from our brand to ensure that your teeth can stay white and healthy.

Icy Bear Whitening Toothpaste

The Diamond Dust Whitening Toothpaste by Icy Bear is one of the best types of whitening toothpaste for everyday use. It takes care of your overall mouth health and is clinically proven to prevent tooth decay and protect the enamel. It also effectively eliminates surface stains and plaque, while its diamond micro-particles softly clean the teeth without making them sensitive. Icy Bear whitening toothpaste is vegan-friendly and free from palm oil, bleaching agents, chemicals, and SLS. Icy Bear toothpaste, which is made in the UK, has recently been recognised by GHP as the best whitening toothpaste in the North West.

Icy Bear Whitening Strips

If you want to boost the whitening effect of toothpaste even more, try combining Icy Bear whitening toothpaste with our whitening strips. Made using the innovative PAP technology, these strips can make your teeth up to 7 shades whiter. PAP, or phthalimido-peroxy-caproic acid, is a non-invasive teeth whitening agent that effectively whitens the teeth without damaging the enamel. 


Unlike Icy Bear, most other whitening strips use hydrogen peroxide in their formula, which causes sensitivity in the teeth and gums. Unlike hydrogen peroxide, PAP has no side effects, and it’s just as effective.


Does charcoal in toothpaste do anything?

Activated charcoal in toothpaste may help to remove plaque build-up and surface stains caused by coloured foods and drinks from your teeth. However, there’s no evidence to prove that charcoal actually whitens the teeth besides removing stains. In fact, it’s very abrasive and can cause abnormal sensitivity in the teeth and gums.

Do dentists recommend charcoal toothpaste?

No, generally speaking, dentists don’t recommend using charcoal toothpaste. But if you do use this product, you should be extremely cautious because charcoal is very abrasive. Plus, the American Dental Association has not found any evidence to prove that charcoal toothpaste can effectively whiten teeth. In fact, it can scrape away the enamel and make the teeth look even more yellow. This happens because charcoal exposes dentin, the yellowish layer of tissue located underneath tooth enamel.

Does charcoal toothpaste make your teeth whiter?

No, while it may seem like charcoal whitens your teeth, it simply removes plaque and extrinsic stains, just like regular toothpaste. But if you use charcoal toothpaste for a prolonged period of time, your teeth may start looking even more yellow, and you will likely experience tooth pain and sensitivity.

What’s the safest way to whiten your teeth?

We recommend using Icy Bear whitening toothpaste and whitening strips for the safest and most effective at-home teeth whitening experience. These products contain no dangerous chemicals or harsh abrasives, and they can make your teeth up to seven shades whiter while protecting your enamel and taking care of your overall oral health.

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