Liebwerk toothbrushes are produced in Toggenburg, St.Gallen. Our manufacturer is a local dental care utilities producer, which guarantees that our toothbrushes are of the highest quality and meet modern dental care standards.
The factory performs the all-round production circle from receiving the raw wood until shaping the handles and tufting the bristles. One factory production considerably reduces the ecological impact of manufacturing and ensures close quality control at every production phase.
We are enthusiastic about bamboo as an ecological raw material. However, giant bamboo suitable for the toothbrush manufacturing only grows in Asia and South America. Long import routs result in high CO2 emissions that ultimately reduce the ecological advantage of bamboo. In addition, reduced quality control options over cultivation and processing of the giant bamboo makes us convinced that local and certified raw materials is the only environmentally sound choice.
The handles of Liebwerk toothbrushes are made of FSC-certified Swiss beech wood. Its hardness, wear resistance and excellent flexibility make beech wood the ideal raw material for manufacture of toothbrushes. In addition, it is the most readily available type of hardwood from sustainable forests.
The FSC wood comes mainly from Toggenburg (SG) and partially from St. Gallen Rhine Valley and Zurich Oberland.
The FSC certificate is a seal of quality for sustainable forest management that focuses on sustainability and natural regenerative capacity of the forest. To put it simple, this means that no more wood may be felled than regrows on a sustainable basis.
The toothbrush handles are coated with carnauba wax that is harvested or collected from the leaves of carnauba palm tree (Copernica prunifera). This wax is naturally vegan and is widely used in cosmetic and food industries. Carnauba wax is collected from wild and not cultivated trees. It is important to note that wax harvesting is harmless for the tree and the collected leaves are regrown until the next harvesting season.
The bristles of Liebwerk toothbrushes are made of different types of nylon:
- The bristles of the SOFT and KIDS toothbrushes are made of nylon (PA 6.12). Its softness, flexibility and durability make nylon a high-quality bristle material for modern toothbrushes.
- The bristles of the RICINE toothbrush are made of castor oil-based nylon (PA 10.10) which is a mineral oil free bioplastic.
The dyes used to colour our bristles are the conventional dyes used in the toothbrush industry. They are certified for food safety and oral hygiene.
The type of nylon influences the durability of the bristles over time. Castor oil-based nylon is less resistant than conventional nylon. Therefore, the bristles bend sooner and the lifespan of the toothbrush is reduced. In order to guarantee that all types of Liebwerk toothbrushes serve during at least the two months period, castor oil-based bristles must be thicker, which makes the RICINE toothbrush harder. This is why our RICINE model is only available with medium bristles whereas our SOFT model has conventional nylon bristles.
There is currently no compostable alternative to nylon other than animal-based materials such as wild boar hair. However, this material fails to perform both from the environmental and the hygienic point of view: the hair comes from industrial farms, often located in China, and is hollow, which provides the perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
Bioplastic alternatives, such as the castor oil-based nylon, are based on renewable plant-based oils. However, due to the lengthy degradation periods they do not fall under the composability criteria for the house compost waste.
Important! In virtually all toothbrushes available on the market, small hooks made of stainless-steel fix the bristles in the head. These hooks must not get into compost either.
Soft bristles ensure gentle and thorough cleaning, and prevent unintentional damage to the enamel and gums caused by hard bristles. It is therefore the safest choice when it comes to protecting teeth and gums.
The rounded tips of the bristles have an essential function. It is widely known that sharp-edged bristles can cause irritation and micro injuries to the gums, which in the long term can cause gingival damage and recession. Most bamboo toothbrushes produced in China have flat-cut bristles and therefore lack this essential feature.
It has been clinically proven that soft, rounded bristles effectively remove plaque and food particles without damaging the mouth and teeth. We therefore guarantee our customers that the Liebwerk toothbrushes meet the highest standards of dental care.
It is commonly agreed among dentists that the average lifespan of a toothbrush is 2 to 3 months. Over the time bristles start bending and the cleaning becomes significantly less effective. The lifespan of a toothbrush also depends on the cleaning habits: some of us are more vigorous cleaners and the bristles gets worn sooner. Children may also require a more frequent change of the toothbrush as they tend to brush more actively and the wear and tear on their toothbrushes may be more evident.
It is also widely recommended to change your toothbrush if you have recently been sick with an infection or a virus. Your old toothbrush will carry the bacteria which can lead to reinfection.
Wood is an organic material that changes over time. The upper layer of the wax coating diminishes due to the friction while brushing the teeth. Like with wooden kitchen utensils, we recommend applying a small amount of your favourite vegetable oil (olive oil, sunflower oil, etc.) to the handle once a week to protect it from humidity and maintain its smoothness throughout its lifespan.
Simply snip off the head of the toothbrush and dispose it with regular garbage. Neither nylon nor bioplastic bristles are compostable. Moreover, there are tiny metal hooks inside the head of the toothbrush to fix the bundles of bristles.
The wooden handle is in its turn 100% biodegradable and can be disposed in green waste to receive second life as compost – an enrichment for soil, a resource for heat, electricity and fuel. Alternatively, the handle can be creatively used in your household, for example, for plant labelling or staking.