Children’s toothpaste at Stiftung Warentest: Only three toothpastes are recommended – consumers

Teaching children to brush their teeth is no easy task. Experienced parents know this all too well. Still, effective protection against caries – and thus the right toothpaste – is very important from an early age.

Therefore, Stiftung Warentest has examined the market for baby toothpaste in more detail. However, according to the consumer organization, the test (August 2022) was “quite frustrating”. More than half of the 21 pediatric toothpastes tested were satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

Some contain too little or no fluoride, an effective means of preventing cavities in the teeth. Others use the discredited dye titanium dioxide. In addition, the defective products make it clear that the price does not say anything about the quality of the toothpaste.

These nine toothpastes are deficient:

  • Blend-a-med Blendi Gel (1.86 euros, grade 5.0): “poor” for the prevention of caries with fluoride, “sufficient” for titanium dioxide content
  • Müller SensiDent Kids toothpaste (EUR 0,73, grade 5,0): “insufficient” to prevent cavities when using fluoride, “sufficient” to contain titanium dioxide
  • dm Alverde natural cosmetics children’s tooth jelly (EUR 3,50, grade 5.0): “poor” for the prevention of caries with fluoride, “very good” for titanium dioxide content
  • Karex baby toothpaste (EUR 6,80, grade 5.0): “poor” for caries prophylaxis with fluorine, “very good” for titanium dioxide content
  • Lavera Natural Cosmetics Baby Toothpaste (EUR 4,65, grade 5.0): “poor” for the prevention of caries by fluoride, “very good” for titanium dioxide content
  • Lidl Dentalux tooth jelly for children (EUR 0.60, grade 5.0): “poor” for the prevention of cavities in the teeth using fluoride, “very good” for titanium dioxide content
  • Logodent Natural Cosmetics Happy Kids Strawberry Tooth Gel (5.90 euros, grade 5.0): “poor” for the prevention of caries with fluoride, “very good” for titanium dioxide content
  • Rossmann Alterra natural cosmetics children’s tooth gel (EUR 2.08, grade 5.0): “poor” for caries prophylaxis with fluorine, “very good” for titanium dioxide content
  • Weleda baby tooth jelly (7.90 euros, grade 5.0): “poor” for the prevention of caries with fluoride, “very good” for titanium dioxide content

Toothpaste in the test: Insufficient caries protection and the critical dye titanium dioxide affect the results

Since 2021, the “Healthy into Life” network, an association of around 600 specialist associations, institutions and associations, has recommended a uniform amount of fluoride in children’s toothpaste of 1000 ppm (“parts per million”). Four suppliers in the test – Blend-a-med, Lidl, Müller and Alterra from Rossmann – use only about half the recommended amount of fluorine, five suppliers use no fluoride at all. Instead, other active ingredients are used to protect against caries.

Many baby toothpastes have room for improvement when it comes to fluoride content.Photo: Christin Klose / dpa-tmn

The Karex company, for example, uses hydroxyapatite as an active ingredient – “an ingredient copied from nature”, as it says on the tube. According to Stiftung Warentest, however, the study situation for hydroxyapatite – in contrast to fluoride – is very thin. “We have no evidence of the adequate efficacy of hydroxyapatite,” the consumer organization writes.

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Only 12 of the 21 tested toothpastes comply with the recommendations of the trade unions. Nine of these, however, use the critical dye titanium dioxide, including the cheap products Eurodont baby toothpaste from Aldi, Tabaluga tooth jelly from Edeka and Prokudent Kids tooth jelly from Rewe.

From August this year, the additive will have to be banned within the EU because it is no longer considered safe. According to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), titanium dioxide can damage the genetic material of cells and possibly even cause cancer. However, some suppliers informed Stiftung Warentest that they would work to stop using titanium dioxide.

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Which baby toothpaste is recommended according to Stiftung Warentest?

Together with the Signal baby toothpaste, the Elmex baby toothpaste was able to convince the product testers the most.Photo: Stiftung Warentest / dpa-tmn

Despite the rather disappointing results, two products received the grade “very good” in the test: Elmex baby toothpaste and Signal baby toothpaste. The amount of fluoride in these creams is in line with the recommendations of pediatricians and dentists. Titanium dioxide is not included. The test winners leave only a lot to be desired in terms of price: the signal toothpaste costs 3.20 euros, Elmex even 4 euros per. 100 milliliters.

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For parents with children from the age of six, Stiftung Warentest has a saving tip: Instead of a special children’s toothpaste, older children can use universal toothpaste for adults without zinc. According to the consumer organization, too much zinc can be harmful to health. The universal toothpaste Kaufland Bevola at 60 cents per. 100 milliliters is very good. There is more information in the toothpaste test.

Incidentally, the Oral-B Kids toothpaste scored “well” and thus ended up in third place in the rating. According to the supplier, however, this product is no longer produced.

The best toothpaste for children 2022:

  • Elmex baby toothpaste (EUR 4,00, grade 1.1): “very good” for caries prevention through fluoride and titanium dioxide content
  • Signal baby toothpaste My friend Conni (3.20 euros, grade 1.2): “very good” for caries prevention through fluoride and titanium dioxide content
  • Oral-B Kids Toothpaste Frozen (4.20 euros, grade 1.8): “very good” for caries prevention through fluoride and titanium dioxide content, no longer produced

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