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One of the joys of international toothpastes is words.

"Tonigencyl" - amazing. It sounds like a medical condition - maybe something related to a tonsil disorder.

This toothpaste turns out to be the tenth-most popular toothpaste in France. Surely the marketing powerhouse of its creator, Colgate-Palmolive, has something to do with its popularity. When a company throws lots of money at getting the public to be familiar with its brand, that works. (Case in point - compare the popularity of McDonalds to your favorite quick-food restaurant.)

This toothpaste is not available in the States, for whatever reasons the overlords at Colgate-Palmolive predetermined. You may have to visit Europe to buy a tube. (Special thanks to my sister Amy, who very kindly sent a tube for my birthday. She bought this tube in Belgium, where the bilingual Dutch-French packaging perfectly fits that country's needs.)

So, what's it like? The paste is white and has a slightly medicinal flavor - with …

Kobayashi Charclean Charcoal Power Toothpaste

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Japanese charcoal toothpaste.

As you might guess, the paste is black.

This toothpaste has a unique flavor - unlike Bamboo Charcoal from China. This one is a bit more antiseptic. It certainly left my mouth feeling clean. And atomic black bowling balls (invisible to the naked eye) are what cause this toothpaste to be so effective... see illustration from the box.

Since I can't read Japanese, I'm very limited in my understanding of what the package says. So these micro-bowling balls might actually be micro-whiffle balls.

Seriously, apparently, charcoal toothpastes are all the rage in Japan, at the moment, according to my friend Katrissa. (She very kindly brought me the paste from Japan, where she was visiting relatives... thanks, Katrissa!)

I do enjoy the flavor. It's very hard to categorize. If I were versant with wine terminology, I could perhaps describe it better. But since I'm not, here's a lay perspective: fresh, not sweet, slightly medicinal and definitely not…

Pasta del Capitano Toothpaste

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Pasta del Capitano Placca e Carie (plaque and cavitives) is a mild white minty paste from Milan, Italy.

The manufacturer's website handily translated automatically into English, and the translators were above average.

The package - less so. In their instructions: "The Period After Opening is expressed in months and concerns the product correctly kept and in normal, foreseeable usage conditions." (The caps are theirs.)

Farmaceutici Dott. Ciccarelli s.p.a. makes more than just toothpaste... makeup, for example - see this 10-second television commercial. Their history dates back to 1821. (Match that, Colgate Palmolive!)

The toothpaste itself has a refreshing mild mint flavor. Unlike most American toothpaste, there is no strong aftertaste.

The packaging prominently boasts of the organic origins of the mint used. Thanks to the integral sodium fluoride, this is a paste that I would not hesitate to use every day. And it was a very affordable 1.40 euro (about $1.60). I picked up…

Marvis Toothpaste from Italy

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Marvis is one of the most luxurious toothpastes available today.

You might be wondering what makes a toothpaste luxurious. There are several factors:

Elegant packagingSubtle smooth tasteFewer ingredients than many toothpastes (less is more these days)Expensive price of entryDelivered in small portions, like caviar Marvis does not miss a single point.
I have the pleasure of owning and using both the "Aquatic Mint" and "Whitening Mint" flavors.
Aquatic Mint is my favorite of the two. It ranks among the best tasting toothpastes of all time. It's super smooth, clean, refreshing and worth keeping in my mouth longer than usual.
Whitening Mint is stronger. I have not used it long enough to report on its whitening effects. My guess is that my teeth are so far gone from years of coffee drinking that they are beyond help.
Both toothpastes are smooth pure white in color.
The boxes feature translations in nine different languages. Clearly, Marvis has a reach far beyond Italy…

Dabur Red Toothpaste Review

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Not for the faint of heart!

This paste has a very strong flavor - cloves with a hint of mint. The flavor is so powerful that it lingers in my mouth a full ten minutes after brushing.

Interestingly, it seems to be packaged for family use, judging by the smiling family photo on both the tube and box.

Dabur Red came in a large box containing a 200 g tube (7.2 oz) and a bonus translucent purple toothbrush - labeled Binaca. Americans will know Bianca as a brand of breath spray. In India, it's a toothpaste brand, manufactured by Dabur, the company that made this red toothpaste. Or I should say Red toothpaste.

Our friends that curated a post on Binaca over at Wikipedia also identify Binaca as an undergarment brand that is marketed in India and owned by Kiran Textiles.

As you can see, the paste has a light brick-red color - quite a bit less saturated than the packaging seems to indicate. But that's good - the package's bright color red would not seem as healthy as the more natura…