5 Best Zero Waste, Eco-Friendly Mouthwash for a Natural Clean

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When it comes to keeping oral health and planet health in tip-top shape, I'll admit I can be a bit obsessive. That's why I’ve already covered toothpaste, manual toothbrushes, and electric toothbrushes in previous articles.

So, it made sense that I fully covered the topic of oral care by also hunting down the best eco-friendly mouthwash.

I’ve crunched, sipped, swilled, and gargled my way through a mountain of eco-friendly, non-toxic, plastic-free, zero-waste mouthwash and found the top picks just for you.

Pros & Cons

100% natural
1% For The Planet
Zero water shipping
PETA Certified Cruelty Free
Recyclable Packaging
Refill pack not currently in stock
Choice of flavors, but not all will suit all tastes

Ingredients Orange: Sodium Bicarbonate^, Tartaric Acid^, Citric Acid^, Eucalyptus Oil*^, Menthol^, Thymol^, Limonene*^

Ingredients Spearmint: Sodium Bicarbonate^, Tartaric Acid^, Citric Acid^, Spearmint Oil*^, Menthol^, Thymol^, Limonene*^

*Organic ^Natural

They Say: Kick that plastic mouthwash bottle to the curb and make the switch to sustainability with the Natural Mouthwash Tablets from Georganics! Made from high-quality natural and organic ingredients free of fluoride, SLS, and glycerin, this product promotes fresh breath and healthy teeth and gums. With a vegan and certified cruelty-free formula, plus plastic-free packaging, this mouthwash alternative is the perfect addition to your natural oral care routine.

We Say: I’ve got a lot of love for Georganics.

They made it as my Overall Winner in the Top 7 Eco-Friendly Toothpastes category, and now they’ve done it again!

I wanted the winner to be a fully zero-waste mouthwash...and that’s exactly what you get with Georganics Natural Mouthwash Tablets.

For just shy of 13 bucks, they’ll send you 180 of their natural mouthwash tablets in a reusable glass jar.

If you want to boost your eco-credentials further (and save money!), you can get a refill pack of 720 tablets for just $26.90 (no jar included).

Both pack sizes come in four different flavors (Activated Charcoal, English Peppermint, Orange, Spearmint).

Regular readers will know I love the smell and taste of orange. So, I initially tested the orange flavor. Which was nice. But I feel more suited to a younger market.

An excellent gateway tablet to get your young budding eco-warriors into zero-waste mouthwash. My girls love them!

I then tried the spearmint flavor. Which I found to be much more how I would expect a mouthwash to taste. Minty fresh breath!

These tablets are straightforward to use:

  • Dissolve one tablet in 10ml of water
  • Gargle for at least 30 seconds
  • Spit out without rinsing

I love the concept of mouthwash in tablet form. It stops the needless transportation of water around the world. When you have it right there in the bathroom faucet anyway!

Geogranics are based down towards the south coast of England and are a proud member of 1% For The Planet.

They’ve seriously knocked it out of the park with this mouthwash.

100% natural ingredients, no needless water, organic extracts, zero-waste packaging...all come together to make a truly epic natural mouthwash.

Four More Amazing Natural Mouthwashes We Loved

As much as I believe that Georganics Natural Mouthwash Tablets is one of the best natural mouthwashes on the market, I’m mindful that mouthwash in tablet form might not, for whatever reason, suit everyone.

So, to cover all bases, here are the best four liquid mouthwashes I tested.

Pros & Cons

B Corp
Not tested on animals
Microbead free
Give back to charity
Plastic bottle
Owned by Colgate-Palmolive

Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Sorbitol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Propanediol, Xylitol, Natural Flavor, Benzoic Acid, Zinc Citrate, Menthol, Sodium Hydroxide (organic)

They Say: Our Wicked Fresh mouthwash is clinically-proven to provide long-lasting fresh breath. It includes zinc, which neutralizes the odor caused by bad breath germs for long-lasting fresh breath without the burn. We produce this mouthwash without fluoride because we respect our customers' diverse needs and interests.

We Say: Tom’s of Maine is an instantly recognizable brand trying to make a positive change since being set up in 1970.

If you’re looking for a fluoride-free liquid natural mouthwash, then Tom’s of Maine is worth some serious consideration.

Wicked Fresh is an alcohol-free mouthwash that uses zinc to kill harmful bacteria in the mouth.

Tom’s of Maine is no longer a family-owned/run independent company. It was sold to Colgate-Palmolive in 2006.

Colgate-Palmolive doesn’t have the best track when it comes to sustainability. However, it appears they’re doing all they can to keep the Tom’s of Maine name as green as possible.

They donate 10% of profits to non-profit organizations and encourage employees to use 5% of their paid hours to volunteer at an organization of their choice.

For all the good they do, I feel Tom’s of Maine can’t be classed as one of the very best natural mouthwashes until they ditch the plastic waste.

Pros & Cons

100% natural
1% For The Planet
Oil pulling is time-consuming

Ingredients: Caprylic & Capric Triglyceride*^, Cocos Nucifera Oil*^, Charcoal Powder^, Mentha Piperita Oil*^, Tocopherol^, Limonene*^

*Organic ^Natural

They Say: This natural mouthwash is based on an Ayurvedic technique of swishing oil through teeth and gums to pull out bacteria and debris. Flavoured with organic Peppermint oil and Activated Charcoal for its stain removal properties. Free from fluoride, SLS & glycerin. Plaque reducing blend with organic Coconut Oil. Certified Cruelty-free & Vegan.

We Say: Georganics makes it on the list twice in this article. This time with a coconut oil-based oil pulling mouthwash.

I’ve covered the topic of oil pulling mouthwash before. Check out the FAQ of my toothpaste article.

I don’t oil pull often (maybe twice a month). To be honest, I find it a bit of a chore to swish oil around my mouth for up to 20 minutes.

However, I do see the benefits when I do it.

This coconut oil natural mouthwash comes in the same flavors as the Georganics Natural Mouthwash Tablets  (Activated Charcoal, English Peppermint, Orange, Spearmint).

Activated Charcoal is the one in my bathroom.

My thinking is that I might not partake in oil pulling as often as I should, but at least when I do, I’m also getting the teeth whitening benefits of activated charcoal.

Pros & Cons

Bamboo cup
Contains peroxide

Ingredients: Distilled Water, food-grade hydrogen peroxide, mentha piperita (organic peppermint) oil, salvia officinalis (organic sage) oil, origanum vulgare (organic oregano) oil, melaleuca alternifolia (organic tea tree) leaf oil

They Say: Delicious flavor, a bit minty and refreshing! Eco friendly and Zero Waste 16 oz glass bottle! Comes with a beautiful bamboo cup to dispense liquid and a hanging card that can be reused as a book mark. Packaged and ship using all plastic free materials. Food grade peroxide to whiten teeth, refresh mouth, heal gums and help sooth scratchy, sore throats. Vegan & Cruelty free. Alcohol, sugar, fluoride, glycerin & gluten free. Essential oils to target gum disease, inflammation, bleeding, gum and teeth sensitivity.

We Say: This might be a controversial entry on the list because of its use of peroxide to help whiten teeth.

The peroxide used is of food-grade quality, certified as natural, and not harmful to human health. Making this a natural mouthwash option.

However, my issue is whether or not adding peroxide even helps whiten your teeth to the degree the manufacturer claims.

After an entire month of using this mouthwash, I noticed no significant difference in the color of my teeth...and I’m a keen red wine drinker!

This 2015 report appears to back up my experience.

If you don’t have the time or inclination to trawl through the report (it might help with insomnia! 😁), it concludes that whitening mouthwashes do change the color of your teeth, but needs many months of continued use to take full effect.

So. If you want whiter teeth, and are happy using a food-grade peroxide over an extended period, then this mouthwash is a winner.

Peroxide concerns to one side; this is a high-quality mouthwash with solid eco-credentials.

I especially like the zero-waste glass bottle and the bamboo cup...perfect for sustainably measuring out the exact quantity needed.

Pros & Cons

Contains alcohol
Plastic cap

Ingredients: Purified water, glycerin, aloe vera gel, xylitol, botanical extracts in ethyl alcohol and water (licorice root, fresh holy basil aerial parts, calendula flower, white oak bark), and essential oils of peppermint, cinnamon and tea tree. Contains less than 10% alcohol by volume.

They Say: All-natural herbal formula neutralizes bacteria, obliterates bad breath and supports healthy gums and teeth. Handcrafted in small batches of Aloe Vera, Licorice Root, Holy Basil, Calendula, White Oak Bark, Peppermint Oil, Cinnamon Oil, Tea Tree Oil and Xylitol. Herbal extracts and essential oils from the richest botanicals holistically balanced for a healthier mouth, mind and body. Vegan, gluten-free with no harsh chemicals, artificial flavors or colors. Completely natural, non-toxic and sugar-free.

We Say: I was initially drawn to the retro drugstore styling of Dr. H. & Co., but was ultimately impressed by the performance and eco-credentials of their natural mouthwash.

It does contain ethyl alcohol, so if you’re looking for an alcohol-free mouthwash, then this isn’t the one for you.

However, if you don’t mind alcohol in your mouthwash, then this is worthy of consideration.

My mouth felt very fresh after using this mouthwash. In fact, my breath was noticeably fresh for most of the day. Depending on what I had for lunch, of course (nothing can fully mask my need to go heavy on the garlic when cooking!).

I like the reusable small glass bottle this mouthwash comes in. I just wish they would replace the plastic lid with something more sustainable.

How To Spot Natural Mouthwashes

Natural mouthwashes contain no artificial additives, flavorings, chemicals, colorings, preservatives, etc.

There are many ingredients you should try to avoid when shopping for mouthwash, including:

  • Poloxamer 407
  • Methyl Salicylate
  • Formaldehyde
  • Sodium Laurel Sulfate
  • Polysorbate
  • Cetylpyridinium Chloride
  • Benzalkonium Chloride
  • Alcohol
  • Chlorine Dioxide
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine
  • Parabens
  • Triclosan
  • Sulphates
  • PEG-40 Hydrogenated Oils

How To Spot Zero-Waste Mouthwashes

Zero-waste mouthwashes are simply natural mouthwashes in reusable, zero-waste containers and shipped in plastic-free, recyclable, or compostable packaging.

It’s awesome that there are now plenty of natural mouthwash options available to buy.

However, work still needs to be done to eliminate more plastic bottles from the mass mouthwash market.

Mouthwash Alternatives For Good Oral Health

Many people don’t use mouthwash at all. They feel that brushing alone works for them. If that works for you...fantastic! My oral health, however, needs a gentle helping hand every now and again.

My father makes his own ‘salt wash’ mouthwash.

It’s an old family secret recipe handed down through generations.

Nah...only kidding… it’s just a half teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water. Rinse for 10 seconds and spit out. Repeat if required.

I don’t like the taste. But dear old dad has done it for decades and swears by it.

Mouthwash Recipes To Boost Your Oral Health And Freshen Breath

If you’re looking for a mouthwash alternative that’s a little more sophisticated than salt in water, you’re in luck. The internet is awash with them!

I tested a few, and these are my two favorites, using natural ingredients.

2 Natural Mouthwash Recipes

Parsley And Mint Mouthwash

  1. Add two tablespoons of fresh parsley, two tablespoons of fresh mint, one cup of distilled water to a blender and blend for 1-2 minutes.
  2. Pour through a strainer into a clean reusable jar.
  3. Use one tablespoon morning and night. Do not swallow.

I still use this from time to time. It fights bad breath and leaves a lovely natural minty flavor in my mouth.

Peppermint And Tea Tree Oil Mouthwash

  1. Add one cup of distilled water, 7-10 peppermint leaves, two drops of tea tree oil, and two teaspoons of baking soda into a clean reusable jar.
  2. Close the lid tight and shake well.
  3. Use one tablespoon morning and night. Do not swallow. Shake before use to remix the baking soda.

What to take the mintiness to the next level? Try adding one drop of organic spearmint oil.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Should I use Mouthwash?

Mouthwash helps clean the parts of teeth the toothbrush sometimes can’t. Other reasons include:

  • Kill bacteria hiding in difficult to reach spots
  • Fight gum inflammation
  • Fight bad breath
  • Fight plaque and gingivitis
  • Fight cavities and tooth decay
  • Some mouthwashes help whiten teeth

How Often Should You Use Mouthwash?

Most people use mouthwash after brushing. So twice a day. However, always read the label of the mouthwash you’re using.

Also, my hygienist recently told me only to use mouthwash in the morning. She also recommended waiting 30 minutes after brushing to avoid washing away the fluoride, etc., of the toothpaste before it had a chance to work.

Can I Swallow Mouthwash?

No. Mouthwash is meant to the swilled around the mouth and then spat out. If you accidentally swallow a small amount, you’ll be fine (maybe a tummy ache or diarrhoea).

However, according to Healthline, if you swallow a large amount of mouthwash, you should take further steps.

Is Hello Mouthwash Sustainable?

I was impressed with the Hello mouthwash I tested. It was full of non-toxic and natural ingredients.

However, it didn’t make the list due to the plastic bottle. I only had room for one plastic bottle brand in this article...and Tom’s of Maine just edged it.

The Final Word

Most mainstream mouthwashes still come in plastic bottles, and plastic bottles are bad for the environment. Even recycled/recyclable plastic bottles are not ideal for the environment.

Your best bet for an environmentally friendly natural mouthwash is zero-waste, plastic-free packaging.

That is why I highly recommend the mouthwash tablet from Georganics. For all the reasons mentioned throughout this article. Plus…ease of travel...

I recently had to fly for a business trip for the first time in years (I like to take the train or coach whenever possible to reduce my carbon footprint).

I was amazed at the amount of liquid (including mouthwash) being trashed at security.

No such issues with my Georganics Natural Mouthwash Tablets! 😉

Get In Touch

Have you made the switch to natural mouthwash? Have you gone even further and found a kick-ass zero-waste alternative? Drop me a line and let me know.

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James is a senior editor at The Roundup and has been in journalism for over 10 years. He was born in the UK but raised in Florida, where he currently lives with his wife and two daughters. James is passionate about sustainable living and environmental issues which are reflected by his work as an editor of TheRoundup.org.
James Miller
James is a senior editor at The Roundup and has been in journalism for over 10 years. He was born in the UK but raised in Florida, where he currently lives with his wife and two daughters. James is passionate about sustainable living and environmental issues which are reflected by his work as an editor of TheRoundup.org.

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