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No matter how many times your dentist reminds you of the endless benefits of flossing (and yes, there really are many), the process never seems to get any more appealing.
So when you find something that makes flossing feel slightly less taxing and helps you actually keep up with the recommended daily routine, you stick to it. And for me, floss picks have become that thing. Because unlike regular floss, which often cuts off the circulation in my fingers and requires a level of dexterity that I don't have, pre-threaded flossers are convenient and easy to use.
Unfortunately, as handy as they are, they're not great for the environment. Most flossers are made with plastic and since they're a one-and-done item, you end up tossing a lot of them over the course of a year. There aren't any specific stats on how flossers contribute to the ever-growing plastic problem, but they can't be recycled. So, just like so many other single-use plastics, they likely end up piling up in landfills or in the environment when you toss them out.
That's why, as a lover of sustainable swaps, when I saw that the internet-favorite oral care brand, Quip, had a reusable option, I knew I had to try it out.
Just like Quip's super sleek toothbrushes, the pick makes flossing feel far more stylish than you ever imagined it could be. It comes in a chic metal case that doubles as the storage vessel and dispenser. And you can choose between five colors for the case, like Copper, Gold and Slate. There's also a plastic case option that, while not quite as stylish, serves the same purpose and is $10 cheaper.
Flossing already feels like such a hassle, so anything that makes it even slightly more complicated is immediately a no-go. Thankfully, the refilling process is really simple. To string the flosser, you press the Q logo on the bottom of the handle to open the pick, then clamp it shut on the floss in the dispenser and pull it to cut the thread. It's as easy as that: The flosser will be strung and the dispenser will be ready to go for next time.
The pick itself is super sturdy and has a thick handle, so you don't ever lose your grip when going for the hard-to-reach areas in the back of your mouth. And the floss is made with waxed polyester, so it easily slides between your teeth and feels gentle on the gums.
It's also great for flossing emergencies since the carrying case can be slipped into your bag and has a mirror inside, for moments when you need to floss on the go.
According to the brand, the pick replaces 180 single-use flossers per refill and you can sign up to get the $5 refill pods sent to you every three months, so you never run out. The pods are made out of recyclable paper, too, to cut down on unnecessary plastic.
Cleanliness is usually the biggest concern when it comes to these reusable products. The brand recommends rinsing the empty pick with water whenever you notice any buildup, but I like to do it after every use.
I've been using it for about a month and I only have had one real qualm so far: As a frequent popcorn eater, I appreciated the pointed end that you find on many flossers, as it's handy for getting out those kernels or other small pieces of food that get stuck along the gum line. I'm a little bummed that this pick doesn't have that, though, it's probably better for my gums in the long run since it saves them from unnecessary prodding. (And I've since found that I can usually tackle those areas with some targeted brushing.)
If you're looking to cut down on your plastic use, ditching the disposable flossers for this reusable option is a good place to start. After all, even small swaps can make a big difference when it comes to living more sustainably.
For more stories like this, check out:
- 6 simple swaps for a more eco-friendly lifestyle
- Cut down on plastic waste with these refillable home and beauty essentials
- This expert-approved produce saver keeps fruits and veggies fresh for weeks