Colgate is a well-known oral hygiene brand that is trying to make some more sustainable products.
The Colgate Keep toothbrush is made of two parts: a reusable aluminium handle, with replaceable heads.
The aim is to reduce plastic waste.
It gives a good clean and is widely available, making this an easy choice if you are looking for a more environmentally friendly toothbrush.
- Widely available in stores and online
- Good bristle arrangement
- Two different heads available
- Multiple colour options
- Replaceable head toothbrush
- Eco-friendly and sustainable product
- Plastic free packaging
- Concerns about greenwashing from such a large company
- More expensive option
- Bristles are quite hard
Are there any other brushes to consider?
If your priority is the environment, see our guide to picking the best eco-friendly toothbrushes.
Other “eco” options include a toothbrush made from recycled material such as Preserve.
Colgate makes a bamboo toothbrush, but there are some alternatives from smaller companies in our best bamboo toothbrush post.
We cover the full range of manual options in our best manual toothbrush post.
Colgate Keep in-depth review
In the sections below I have shared my experience of testing the Colgate Keep, as well as comments on Colgate as a company and the environmental credentials of this products.
Variants of this brush
Colgate has branded this toothbrush differently for different countries. In the UK, it is called the Colgate Link, in the USA and Canada it is known as the Colgate Keep, and in Australia and New Zealand it is the Colgate Infinity.
The Link, Keep, and Infinity are all the same product with the same packaging. The only difference is the name.
You have the options to buy the starter kit or the refill kit.
The starter box has a handle and two toothbrush heads. The Refill kit has only the toothbrush heads and no handle.
There are two handle colours for the Colgate Keep toothbrush: silver or navy. The handles are the same shape and material, but are coated in different colour powders.
When is comes to the toothbrush heads, there are two types available:
- Deep Clean – have “floss tip” bristles – tapered bristle ends to help clean between the teeth and underneath the gums.
- Whitening – comes with “stain removing cups” – rubber like projections between the bristles to help polish the tooth surface.
What’s in the box?
The box is made from up to 60% recycled material, making a cardboard box which is plastic free. This box is easily recycled too.
The starter box has one aluminium handle and two toothbrush heads.
The Refill kit has only the toothbrush heads and no handle.
- Reusable aluminium handle in silver or navy
- Snap on/off toothbrush heads
- Replaceable toothbrush heads in deep clean or whitening option
- Plastic free packaging made from recycled materials
- Less plastic waste compared to regular plastic toothbrush
- Tongue cleaner on back of toothbrush head
Design, usability, clean & general use
The exact design and colour of the Colgate Keep depends on the variant selected, but for this review I have been testing the Deep Clean starter kit.
Refer to the variants section of this review to see the other designs.
The aluminium handle on this brush is designed to last a very long time. Obviously, as the brush was only released in the 2021, we are yet to see real world results about how long it will last.
Aluminium is a good choice of material as it is so hard wearing. And when you do eventually want to get rid of this brush handle, it should be easy enough to dispose of with regular household recycling.
The handle is heavier than I expected, but is comfortable to grip and easy to use. It appears to have a powdered type finish, which I assume is how they get the colour options.
The design appears to be an elongated infinity symbol ∞ which is a nice touch. It’s also functional as the brush handle sits comfortably in the palm of your hand.
There is a projection at the top of the handle, made from aluminium, and the replacement heads click on and off this. It needs a bit of strength to put on and remove, and because of this there was no movement of the head during use.
Colgate hasn’t released any information about where or how the handle is made, so I can’t comment on the sustainability of that.
The packaging is a good effort — it is made from recycled material and can be recycled itself.
Moving on to the toothbrush head. It’s a standard size. There are different coloured bristles – white and blue.
Some bristles have blue tips but there is nothing to say these are indicator bristles which change colour with wear to tell you when to replace the heads.
Whilst there is no information on the material, I suspect these are just regular nylon. There aren’t many other options at present.
They are arranged at different heights, which is one of the most effective ways of cleaning the teeth and gums.
I had medium bristles, which I found to be too firm. In my experience, I would put these as firm rather than medium and would recommend opting for a soft option where available.
If you have sore gums or any sort of gum recession or tooth wear, I would probably advise skipping this brush in favour of a softer option.
The heads are branded as “whitening” and “deep clean”. The difference seems small, and I doubt these make much difference in the real world in terms of extra stain removal for the whitening option, or much better gum outcomes for the deep clean option.
There isn’t much need to pick one over the other.
Summary of design, usability, clean & general use
- Aluminium handle
- Reusable handle
- Plastic replaceable heads
- Plastic bristles
- Bristles are on multiple levels
- Whitening or deep clean toothbrush head options
- Plastic free packaging
- Recycled mater packaging
- Packaging is recyclable
About Colgate as a company
When you think of Colgate, you probably don’t think of green products.
There are some suspicions around the true environmental impact of a brush like this, and questions around whether they are just jumping on the greenwashing branding.
They do release sustainability impact reports though, and seem to be happy with their progress.
The truth is, without major changes to manufacturing processes, Colgate isn’t going to become a sustainable company overnight.
It is up to you to decide whether you want the convenience of such a well stocked brand over a truly environmentally friendly company.
But to have a reusable handle is a good start from this well known oral care brand, and I like that it is easily available for so many people.
With Colgate being so well established, it’s also likely that the heads will be available for years to come (rather than small companies which may not not survive as long as their toothbrush handles).
Reliability & long term use
I used this brush twice daily for a week and don’t have any concerns about the heads lasting three months.
You might have a problem if switching the heads daily, e.g. if sharing the handle with a family member. The plastic on the head, which clicks onto the handle, may show some signs of wear and become slightly loose.
The handle is hard wearing. Obviously the toothbrush hasn’t been around that long, and I haven’t had one for years so I don’t know for certain how well this will last. But it feels sturdy enough to last long term (I’m thinking years rather than months).
How to recycle the Colgate Keep toothbrush
The handle can be reused so only the heads need to be disposed of.
These heads will need to be sent to a specialist recycling facility, such as Terracycle. See our advice on how to recycle a toothbrush for more on this.
Colgate does not offer a send back scheme for its toothbrush heads.
This is a good toothbrush that feels like it is cleaning well.
It is a step in the right direction for Colgate, which is starting to make more environmentally friendly products.
When considering “eco” credentials you might want to question Colgate’s motive and consider whether this is an example of greenwashing, and if you could support a smaller company instead.
- Height (without head) – 5 ½ inches/14cm
- Height (with head) – 7 ½ inches/19.5cm
- Handle Width (widest point) – ¾ inch/1.9cm
- Weight (without head) – 1 oz/ 30g
- Weight (with head) – 1 ¼ oz / 33g
All are approximates
Do you own or have you used the Colgate Keep?
Are there certain features that you really like or dislike?
Let us know what you think about this brush and let others who may well be considering purchasing one know your opinions before they do.