Yes, you can skip buying tablets!
If you’ve ever had a tube of toothpaste burst in your backpack while hiking or camping, you’ve probably thought: there HAS to be a better way!
Sure, we could be like the dude from this video who uses campfire charcoal, wild mint and a stick to brush his teeth, but the question is: why would we want to?
Is a few days of plaque buildup and wilt-worthy breath really worth the risk of:
- Getting dirt and who-knows-what-else in our mouths. (Also, charcoal is highly abrasive.)
- Mistaking mint for some poison ivy.
- Stabbing our gums or knocking out a filling by brushing with a sharp stick ... that a bear possibly peed on?
OK, so clearly we’re not cut out for a survivalist show, and if you’re the same way, this leads us to the more realistic option: toothpaste tablets. But do we really want to buy a whole container of them?
Toothpaste Tablets Are Born for Backpackers, Buuuut ...
There are many pros & cons of toothpaste tablets.
A pro is they’re super convenient for hiking and camping. No exploding tubes and they don’t take up as much space as toothpaste because you can simply count out as many as you need.
And for the serious backpacker where every tenth of an ounce matters, the weight savings is a big deal.
However, they cost a pretty penny and getting stuck with a whole container of tabs if you decide you can’t stand the taste and texture (common complaints) is like flushing money down the drain – money that could have been used for some cool new hiking gear!
So what’s the solution? Flex your DIY muscles and make your own dehydrated toothpaste drops out of your favorite toothpaste.
How to Make Your Own Dehydrated Toothpaste Drops
#1. Grab your favorite tube of toothpaste (works best with dye-free toothpaste).
#2. Squeeze small drops onto parchment paper or aluminum foil.
#3. Let them dry for 3-4 days. (Or if you have a dehydrator, this will reduce the time quite a bit.)
#4. Once your drops are dry, put them in a plastic baggie and dust with baking soda to keep them from clumping together.
#5. When ready to use, chew up for a moment, then add water to your mouth and get brushing.
For hardcore backpackers, having a plastic baggie with tabs versus a toothpaste tube is more valuable, as you can use the baggie for other purposes if need be, such as storing some dry kindling if it’s about to rain.
Looking for a New Favorite Toothpaste?
When you’re up at the crack of dawn out in the woods, the first thing you want to do is brew some coffee, of course! And thanks to Oxyfresh dentist-recommended Pro Formula Fresh Mint Toothpaste, you can have a cup of joe (or four) and not worry about staining your pearly whites.
Unlike abrasive charcoal toothpastes or harsh whitening toothpastes, it gently removes surface stains without damaging enamel or dulling cosmetic work. (If a toothpaste is too abrasive, it can lead to tooth sensitivity, decay, and even yellow teeth.)
In fact, Pro Formula Toothpaste has one of the lowest abrasion ratings on the index (45), courtesy of its ultra-fine polishing ingredient, calcium carbonate. But pampering your smile is just one of the reasons you’ll love it:
- Dye free – to protect pearly whites & the planet.
- Fluoride free – safe for campers who prefer to swallow their toothpaste.
- Tastes great – no harsh menthol flavors. We use a Goldilocks-approved, just-right amount of natural peppermint essential oil.
- All-day fresh breath – the only toothpaste brand with proprietary Oxygene® to stop bad breath right at the source, rather than covering it up with masking agents.
Solo or transformed into toothpaste drops for camping, you’ll love the superior brush that comes from Oxyfresh Pro Formula Toothpaste.
Curious About Leave-No-Trace Toothbrushing?
Preserving the Great Outdoors by adopting leave-no-trace practices is a hot topic among backpackers. Some suggest skipping toothpaste altogether and just brushing with water. Others suggest swallowing your toothpaste (if it doesn’t contain fluoride).
The route you go is up to you, but keep in mind these best practices if you do use toothpaste or tabs/drops while hiking.
Need to Spit? Take Your Pick.
- Actually, don’t spit. SPRAY your toothpaste out, dispersing it in a large area so no globs end up on foliage. Bonus if you can find a big rock to spray on.
- Bury your spit in the dirt.
- Spit into a plastic baggie and pack it out with you.
Happy Backpacking! Now that you’re in the know about how to keep it fresh, affordable and simple when it comes to backpack toothpaste, it’s time to start planning your next grand adventure. Enjoy!