Review: Does Charcoal Teeth Whitening Toothpaste Actually Work?

You’d need a dentist’s eye to see the slightest difference

Review: Does Charcoal Teeth Whitening Toothpaste Actually Work?

by Aimee Jakes |
Published on

If you’re like us, then you spend breakfast munching berries, the week mainlining coffee and the weekends double dosing on red wine. So, in other words, causing havoc with our teeth’s enamel. We don’t need to ask a dentist to know that bright white teeth is in fashion (just scan the Daily Mail’s sidebar of shame to see the gleaming conditioned gnashers of the celebrity set), but it’s expensive. Though there are traditional methods out there like, coconut pulling and bicarbonate of soda, the most fashion-forward one at the moment is activated charcoal.


It’s messy and seems like it’s part of a misinformed Victorian beauty regime, but using charcoal teeth whitening powders, toothpaste and mouthwash is very on trend. Google it, and you’ll find over 598,000 results. But, actually, does it work? All in the name of science we decided to put five brands to the test, for this charcoal teeth whitening review we were planning to take before and after pictures, but the results, though visible, are so imperceptible the camera doesn’t do them justice, so you’ll just have to trust us. However, before we got started we caught up with Celebrity Dentist, Dr Richard Marques AKA ‘The King Of Smiles’ to get the lowdown on this whitening method…

Charcoal toothpaste before and after

What Is The Benefit Of Activated Black Charcoal For Teeth?

Activated charcoal can be used for whitening teeth. This is carbon particles (charcoal) that has been activated to make it absorb stains and toxins so that it whitens teeth.

Can You Over Use Charcoal Teeth Whitening Products And What Are The Side-Effects?

It is best to use this only once or twice a week alongside your normal toothpaste as it can be abrasive (and wear the teeth enamel) of overused.

Is It Possible To DIY It By Making It At Home?

Do NOT attempt to make this at home. It is not the same as the charcoal from your BBQ! This can be toxic.

What Are The Dangers Of Using Charcoal For Teeth Whitening?

Activated charcoal is not damaging to your health unless ingested in extremely large amounts. When used in the mouth it is perfectly safe and in fact will absorb bad toxins and bacteria from the mouth improving your gum health and breath!

Chacoal toothpastes and charcoal tooth whitening reviews:

Curaprox Black is White Charcoal Whitening toothpaste, £20, Boots

Promises: The package says it’s a whitening toothpaste that removes discolouration using activated carbon without abrading or bleaching and uses enzymes to protect against tooth decay. Side note, it says it supports salivary function, which is just plain ick.

Tastes Like: The bitter pill of when you realise your parents are like normal people and not superheroes.

Did It Make Your Teeth Pearly White? Yes, yes YES. This toothpaste may be pricey, but oh god, it works. You can feel the coffee stain from two years ago evaporate from your enamel (not real science terminology, please bare with). It's powerful and very very black (and so is my bathroom sink after three days)

Rating: 9/10 because I didn't manage to blind anyone with the pearlescent glow of my gnashers. Still great though.

Pro Care Charcoal Toothpaste, £2.49, Superdrug

Promises: With maximum fluoride protection it helps keep teeth and gums healthy.

Tastes Like: Weakness

Did It Make Your Teeth Pearly White? This was a bit meh. It did its job, but it left at 5:30 pm on the dot and came in the next day hungover and didn't listen to my Powerpoint on how to be a team player. The actual toothpaste was more of a grey than a black and it didn't feel very powerful while being swilled around in my gob. My teeth did not look any better, nor worse.

Rating: 4/10

Beverly Hills Charcoal Toothpaste, £4.99, Superdrug

Promises: The advanced Hydrated Silica within Perfect White offers a high-performance whitening boost while the stain dissolving Pentasodium Triphosphate agent prevents food particles settling on the teeth. Sure, whatever that means.

**Tastes **Like: Minty toothpaste.

Did It Make Your Teeth Pearly White? My teeth felt cleaner, and my breath felt oh-so-fresh, but if you blindfolded me (don’t do that) - I would have just assumed it was just another samey toothpaste. Great, but not great, great y’know?

Rating: 6/10

Black Edition Toothpaste, £9.99, Diamond Whites

Promises: This one-step, dual-action teeth whitening paste dissolves particles and penetrates enamel.

Tastes Like: Like a tsunami of mint, it’s so fresh my breath could only just about handle it.

Did It Make Your Teeth Pearly White? Pearly is a step too far, slightly creamier and with less discolouration, yes. I used it for a month, and in that period I had to clean my sink with bleach nearly every day, so you can imagine what that amount of charcoal will do one's teeth.

Rating: 8/10

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Follow Aimee on Instagram @a1meejakes

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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