Here’s What Happened When I Whitened My Teeth with Activated Charcoal

Story and photo by Devon Rademacher

Activated charcoal has recently been all over our newsfeed, and I’m sure it’s been on yours, too. The chalky powder boasts numerous uses, but one that really caught my eye – a teeth whitener.

Whitening strips are expensive, toothpaste doesn’t seem to do the trick, and coconut oil is a myth. So, why not try one more crazy Internet trend?

Editor’s note: Activated charcoal is NOT barbecue charcoal. Please make sure it is activated before attempting.

Getting the Goods
First, I went to Greentree Cooperative Grocery, a natural food store in downtown Mount Pleasant. The powder came out to be around a dollar for less than an ounce (which is more than enough for dozens of uses). I also purchased a tiny container to hold the charcoal.

The Process
When I got home I transferred the bagged powder into the container. I recommend trying this process outside – it gets messy.

To use the powder, I took a new toothbrush (use a different one than your everyday toothbrush) and wet it, then dipped it into the charcoal.

Brush normally, but try to keep your mouth closed as it will get everywhere. The taste is a little odd – almost chalk like, but it is safe in case you accidentally swallow some.

Brush all around for about two minutes or as long as you can handle.

When I was through, I spit the charcoal out, which is why you might want to try it outside as it does stain counters.

The Verdict
After one brush I didn’t notice much, but after repeating the process a few more times I began to notice brighter and whiter teeth.

If you can get over the strange taste and the mess, and you’re determined enough to keep using it, we recommend trying this affordable and more natural alternative to drug store teeth whitener.

Our rating? An 8 out of 10.