264 million toothbrushes a year are thrown away in the UK.
The common toothbrush is usually made from a combination of oil-based plastic, rubber and then a mix of plastic and cardboard for the packaging. As consumers call out for sustainable options, the amount of plastic used is no longer going unnoticed.
As a consumer, you would typically change your toothbrush every 3 months and discard your old one. Whilst hygienic, this is still contributing to the amount of plastic in landfill. Toothbrushes are not recyclable because the combination of plastics used are too difficult to separate. Consequently, they have even been found on beaches around the world.
Alternatives are now being provided, using wood or boar bristles and bamboo handles. These eco-friendly toothbrushes are often offered as a subscription, so the conscious consumer can easily make the switch. Some companies have reverted to just replacing the head rather than the whole brush, to save on material used for the handle.
Most would consider their toothbrush an every day essential. It is another plastic thing we cannot live without, unless brands choose to reconsider the way they manufacture their brushes. We are proud of our high performing bioplastic because it has the potential to replace the traditional plastics we are so used to, which are sadly contributing to climate change.
Cutting down on plastics is complicated because it is so embedded in our daily life but simply raising awareness is a step in the right direction for the environment.