How to Use Charcoal to Whiten Your Teeth Naturally

It’s not every day that someone claims to be able to whiten your teeth naturally with black powder but my friend, today is that day.

I first discovered I could whiten my teeth with activated charcoal about 3 years ago. I approached Scott and said, “You know, we should whiten our teeth.” He replied, “What are you trying to say?”

He knows that in our relationship most of the time when one of us says “we” it means the person opposite of ourselves. It’s a nice way to indirectly suggest someone do something. Sort of like when he says, “We need to do laundry this weekend.” That’s code word for, “You need to do laundry this weekend.”

It’s okay, we both do it to each other.

But when I approached Scott that day three years ago, it was with good reason. He’s a big coffee and wine drinker and while that is all good and dandy, coffee and wine contain something called tannins.

Tannins come from an antioxidant called tannic acid, which is a naturally occurring vegetable dye. As you can imagine, with any type of dye, they are quick to adhere to whatever surface they meet — like in our case, teeth. After time, they can cause a yellowish discoloration on the teeth’s surface.

Since we’re all about cutting out toxins and using natural ingredients when possible, I knew I had to figure out something to use other than those whitening strips. Plus, have you ever tried to use them? They say to not swallow but how can you not? Either you’re drooling all over yourself or you’re foaming at the mouth like a rabid animal. Neither are fun and fortunately for you and I, neither are necessary to get white teeth.

But listen, I’m not talking about fake white teeth where you look at them and wonder how on earth that color of white is even natural. I’m talking about a soft clean white, noticeable enough to see a difference but not such a drastic change that you’re wondering if that person has dentures.

Ok, so back to the black powder that we call activated charcoal (activated carbon). Activated charcoal is literally just charcoal treated with gasses to purify it — hence the term activated. That’s why you wouldn’t want to simply grab a piece of charcoal from your fireplace and rub it on your teeth.

Ditch the chemical whitening strips that make you foam at the mouth and use activated charcoal to whiten your teeth naturally. It's easy and effective!
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The cool thing about activated charcoal is that is adsorbs things which different than a substance that absorbs things (like a sponge). When a substance adsorbs things instead of absorbs them, it means they attract the bad stuff to the surface like a magnet. That’s why activated charcoal is perfect for whitening our teeth — it sucks all the tannins out of our teeth to the surface but leaves all the minerals essential for keeping our teeth healthy.

Activated charcoal has other uses besides whitening teeth which makes it an excellent addition to your natural medicine cabinet. It can be used for food poisoning (draw the toxins out of the stomach while leaving all the other good things), insect bites, bad breath, and it’s even used in water filters and as an air deodorizer. (source)

Whitening your teeth with activated charcoal is easy!


Grab a “teeth whitening dedicated toothbrush,” open the capsule, dip your toothbrush in it, and gently brush your teeth with it. You can let it sit for about 2-3 minutes before you rinse your mouth out; this lets the activated charcoal go to work. Once the time is up, rinse well, and smile bright! If you find there is still black in your teeth, brush your teeth with toothpaste like you normally would.

You can do it once a week, once every other week, or whenever you need a little extra whitening.

You can find activated charcoal at your local health food store or you can buy activated charcoal on Amazon here. I prefer the capsule form versus the bulk powder because it’s personally easier to store and use.

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  1. I love using this trick! People often ask how I keep my teeth so white and they are always surprised that activated charcoal is my secret 🙂

  2. Great article! A lot of us (especially me, a heavy coffee drinker) will benefit from this. Sure, we can use whitening products from stores but the natural way will keep gums from damaging.

    Thanks for the post.

  3. Open and empty one capsule of activated charcoal. Wet your toothbrush and dab it into the charcoal and then brush it gently on your teeth. You can either brush for a minute or so, or just let it sit on your teeth. Keep the charcoal on your teeth for 3-5 minutes so it can absorb the stains. Rinse out your mouth and brush your teeth after with regular toothpaste to remove the charcoal. Do this every day for 3-4 weeks. Nature’s Way Activated Charcoal will work great for this.

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