10-ish Ways To Clean Your Toothbrush Naturally

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Clean Toothbrush

I use natural cleaners for everything I clean, but what about my toothbrush? Here are 10-ish sure-fire ways to clean your toothbrush, and do it naturally.

Remember the toothbrush in the toilet Seinfeld episode? Haha!

Recently, a spider in my bathroom may have crawl on it. Eeewww!!! Although burning it would have been my natural reaction, there are other ways to clean your toothbrush.

Wash Your Hands First

Before you start cleaning your toothbrush, wash your hands well. This foaming hand soap is great. You never know what might be on them from dirt to bacteria. You don’t want to transfer any of that to your nice, clean toothbrush, so wash your hands first.

Then, rinse off your toothbrush. Anything that may be on the surface will be washed away, so it’s a great place to start.

Clean Your Toothbrush Naturally


Most mouthwashes are designed to kill bacteria in your mouth, so why not use it to kill the bacteria that may be on your toothbrush? Soak your toothbrush for 15 minutes or so in a cup with enough mouthwash to cover the bristles.

Baking Soda

Mix 2 teaspoons baking soda in 1 cup of warm water and soak your toothbrush for 15-20 minutes. If you don’t want to use baking soda, use salt. Baking soda is a salt and both will achieve the same results.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Some people use it straight to clean their toothbrush, some say to use 50% hydrogen peroxide/50% water and soak your toothbrush in that. However, you do it, soak for at least 15 minutes.

Hot Water

Soak your toothbrush in very hot (180ºF) water for 10-15 minutes. Be careful the water isn’t too hot (210ºF+) or it could melt your bristles.

Apple Cider Vinegar

ACV can help to disinfect your toothbrush. Mix it 50% with 50% water and soak for 15 minutes. I don’t like the taste, so I soak it in clear water for 15 minutes before air drying.


80 proof (40%) vodka can kill bacteria thus helping to clean your toothbrush. I use it straight. You can use a higher percentage of alcohol if you wish.

Colloidal Silver

Colloidal silver is a natural antibacterial that can help with all sorts of nasties that your toothbrush may get on it. Use it at 50% silver to 50% water. You can use it straight if you’ve had some sort of illness.

Silver Antibacterial Toothbrush

This toothbrush has actual silver in it to kill bacteria. You can find them on Walmart.com, Amazon, and other places online.


Just toss it in with the dishes. I use the hot water setting only on my dishwasher to kill bacteria on many things. Use the silverware basket to avoid losing it to the bottom of the dishwasher.

Chlorine Bleach

I’m not a fan of bleach but a mild chlorine solution can be used to kill germs. Use a few drops to a cup of cold water. (Warm water can cause the bleach to not kill bacteria.) Rinse well and let air dry. Chlorine is a gas at room temperature[1] and will dissipate into the air in a few hours.

A Few Clean Toothbrush Notes

It goes without saying that toothbrushes need to be cleaned, and a lot more often than we think they should. If your toothbrush bristles start to wear flat, it’s time to get a new one. Even bamboo toothbrushes have replaceable heads now, so you can do away with just part of it. And while discarded toothbrushes can add to the plastic problem, they are reusable. I keep one in my toolbox, one by the sink to get my fingernails clean and several on my work table. You just never know what you might need them for. I haven’t thrown out a toothbrush in over 10 years.

Do you clean your toothbrush often? How do you get the job done?



  1. Adam Augustyn. Physical And Chemical Properties of Chlorine. Encyclopedia Britannica. July 2019.
  2. Am J Dent. An antimicrobial effect from silver-coated toothbrush heads. PubMed. Oct 2010.

About Debra Maslowski

Debra is a master gardener, a certified herbalist, a natural living instructor, and more. She taught Matt and Betsy how to make soap so they decided to bring her on as a staff writer! Debra recently started an organic herb farm in the mountains of Western North Carolina. You can even purchase her handmade products on Amazon!

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  1. Carol L says

    Where do you get the bamboo toothbrushes? I have an aversion to wood on wet hands and in my mouth….reasons why I can’t use a wooden toothbrush as opposed to a plastic one, which I would much prefer to do. However, I CAN use bamboo utensils (go figure? Not sure why bamboo doesn’t do the same thing to me as regular wooden items) and I have never heard of bamboo toothbrushes.
    Thanks for this ….I have actually boiled toothbrushes before, but with plastic, you must be careful.
    PS: Lucy, this post is about how to clean your TOOTHBRUSH, so that is what is being put in the dishwasher.