It takes a lot to make toothpaste standout from store shelves. I am a grab-n-go customer in the dental hygiene aisle and hardly think about the brand. I do prefer tooth gel over toothpaste and find it a pain to have to search high and low on the package to determine if it is paste or gel. A persuasive point-of-difference for me is the approval of the ADA. I would bet that most commercially sold toothpastes are fine for my oral health, but having the ADA stamp on the box makes me feel better. I think people appreciate when an independent and credible organization adds a stamp of approval- it makes a low-involvement decision even easier.
Some toothpastes that stood out for me were reported in the British Dental Journal.
Milk of Magnesium Toothpaste- A toothpaste you used to be able to buy. It was promoted as a cure for “smoker’s breath”.
Chocolate Toothpaste- An organic compound called theobromine (found in chocolate) was found to strengthen tooth enamel more than fluoride (Pacey, 2013). This is the basis of the $100 tube of chocolate toothpaste by Rennou.
Charcoal Toothpaste- Beverly Hills Formula has marketed a product named Perfect White Black toothpaste which contains activated charcoal. The toothpaste claims to offer” superior high performance whitening enhancement” (“Black toothpaste”, 2014).
These products have tired/are trying to differentiate themselves from the crowded and cluttered toothpaste aisle. Of course, none of these are actually on the shelves. Why do you think major retailers hesitate to offer these products to mainstream customers?
Black toothpaste with activated charcoal. (2014, August 22). British Dental Journal. [Online image]. doi:10.1038/sj.bdj.2014.739
Pacey, L. (2013, May 24). Could chocolate replace toothpaste? British Dental Journal, 214. doi:10.1038/sj.bdj.2013.499
Preena, S. & Swahpnil, S. (2014, September 12). Phillips Milk of Magnesia toothpaste. [Online image]. doi:10.1038/sj.bdj.2014.764
Theodent. (2012, January 1). THEODENT. [Online video]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=30&v=othPKr3CNek