6 Best Baby and Toddler Toothpastes for Healthy Teeth

Because even new teeth need protection.
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By Emma O'Regan-Reidy, E-Commerce Editor
Updated July 3, 2023
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You want to set your child up for success, and when it comes to their health, that involves preventative care. Oral hygiene is important for everybody—even babies and toddlers. Wondering when to introduce toothpaste into your little one’s daily routine? Or maybe you’re curious about what kind is best for your child? Don’t worry—we’ve got the answers right ahead. Below, read top tips from a pediatric dentist, then discover the best toothpaste for toddlers and babies.

When to Introduce Baby Toothpaste

That rumor that kids don’t need toothpaste before the age of 2? Totally false, says Mitali Y. Patel, DDS, a board-certified pediatric dentist based in Atlanta, Georgia. “Using toothpaste is important as soon as there are teeth in the mouth, because it can help prevent tooth decay,” she says. That’s in keeping with the recommendation of both the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) and the American Dental Association (ADA), which encourage brushing with a soft toothbrush and fluoridated toothpaste as soon as the teeth erupt. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), you should start your child off with a smear of toothpaste the size of a grain of rice if they’re under 3, then increase it to a pea-size amount for those 3 to 6. Stick to these small amounts to ensure your child doesn’t ingest too much of the stuff, since “children may not be able to rinse and spit,” Patel explains. Babies and toddlers also aren’t able to thoroughly brush their own teeth, so you’ll have to do it for them for the time being.

How to Shop for Baby and Toddler Toothpaste

“Parents should look for a kids’ fluoridated toothpaste with the ADA Seal of Acceptance,” says Patel. But if you’ve started browsing baby and toddler toothpaste options, you’ve probably noticed that many products are strongly advertised as “fluoride-free.” While it’s true that fluoride can cause adverse effects like mildly discolored permanent teeth (fluorosis) if it’s swallowed in large amounts, it’s safe in the kids’ doses recommended above. In fact, dentists prefer toddler and baby toothpaste with fluoride because of its anti-cavity properties. Still not sure what kind of toothpaste would be best for your child? Patel recommends discussing your options with a dentist. Many kids’ toothpaste labels advise consulting a dentist before use on children under 2 just to be safe.

Beyond looking for a baby toothpaste with fluoride, picking out the best baby or toddler toothpaste is really up to your (and your kid’s) personal preference. For example, some children like strong flavors; others really dislike them. (Word to the wise: They should like it, but not enough that they’ll try to eat it!) But feel free to steer clear of adult toothpastes designed to combat things like discoloration, sensitivity and tartar buildup. “These ingredients that are present in adult toothpaste to address adult dental needs are often not necessary in children’s toothpaste,” says Patel.

Best Baby and Toddler Toothpastes

Shopping for the best baby toothpaste? What about the best toothpaste for toddlers? Really, they’re one and the same. “As long as it’s fluoridated toothpaste, a child can definitely use the same toothpaste throughout their childhood,” Patel explains. Choose from the highly rated, ADA-approved products below—many are conveniently sold in bulk, so go ahead and stock up.

Overall best toddler toothpaste

Tom's of Maine Silly Strawberry Children's Anticavity Toothpaste (3 Pack)
Image: Target
What We Love
  • Fruity flavor encourages healthy brushing habits
  • Free from artificial preservatives, colors or flavors
  • Can be used by toddlers and kids alike
Things To Consider
  • Packaging may vary

Natural ingredients set this ADA-approved toddler and baby toothpaste apart. Each tube contains fluoride (to protect against cavities, of course!), as well as calcium and silica to gently clean pearly whites. The fruity flavor is pleasant but not overpowering, which appeals to even the fussiest of kiddos. Don’t believe us? Just check out these reviews from real parents. “The toothpaste has a very subtle strawberry flavor and my baby doesn’t seem to mind it. She might actually like it,” shares one Amazon reviewer. Another Amazon customer raves, “This toothpaste makes my kids brush their teeth like 10 times in a row.” We’re sold!

Size: 5.1 oz. | Active ingredients: Sodium monofluorophosphate (0.76%) | Age rating: 1 to 6 years old

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Best tasting toddler toothpaste

What We Love
  • Vegan, gluten-free, sulfate-free and non-GMO
  • Parents say their kids love the toothpaste color and the bright packaging
  • Made without SLS
Things To Consider
  • Some reviewers say the toothpaste isn’t as sparkly as they expected it to be

Helping your kiddo establish a healthy brushing routine can be difficult—but a tasty toddler toothpaste can make all the difference. Case in point: This sparkle bubblegum option. The ADA-approved toddler toothpaste doesn’t only taste great, but it’s also vegan, gluten-free and cruelty-free to boot. Plus, it's made without sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), which may be irritating to some. Other toddler-approved flavors from this toothpaste brand include wild strawberry, watermelon and grape—yum!

Size: 4.2 oz. | Active ingredients: Sodium fluoride (0.24%) | Age rating: 2+ years old

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Best natural toddler toothpaste

Tom's of Maine Kids Toothpaste, Blueberry (3 Pack)
Image: Amazon
Buying Options
What We Love
  • Vegan and gluten-free
  • Free from artificial preservatives, dyes and flavors
  • Made without SLS
  • A portion of the proceeds goes to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
Things To Consider
  • Some reviewers say the toothpaste’s consistency isn’t consistent

Next up is another toddler toothpaste from Tom’s of Maine. This ADA-approved, blueberry-flavored blend is free from artificial preservatives, dyes and flavors, making it a great choice for parents who prefer natural toothpaste for toddlers. If your child isn’t a fan of blueberries, a watermelon-flavored option is also available.

Size: 5.1 oz. | Active ingredients: Sodyum monofluorophosphate (0.76%) | Age rating: 2+ years old

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Best fruit-flavored toddler toothpaste

Colgate Kids Toothpaste with Anticavity Fluoride (4 Pack)
Image: Amazon
Buying Options
What We Love
  • Gluten-free
  • Flat-top tube reduces messiness
Things To Consider
  • Made with artificial dyes
  • Contains SLS

On the hunt for the best fruit-flavored toothpaste for toddlers? You can’t go wrong with this tasty bubble fruit option from Colgate. Your kiddo will love the minion-themed packaging, and you’ll appreciate how it contains fluoride to gently clean enamel and prevent cavities. What’s more, it comes in a convenient pack of four, so you’ll be stocked up for plenty of days to come. It’s also a great choice for families with multiple kiddos.

Size: 4.6 oz. | Active ingredients: Sodium fluoride (0.24%) | Age rating: 2+ years old

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Best affordable toddler toothpaste

Crest Kid's Cavity Protection Toothpaste, Sparkle Fun (3 Pack)
Image: Target
What We Love
  • Parents say their kids love the flavor
  • The most affordable option on our list
Things To Consider
  • The twist cap may not be the easiest for kids to unscrew independently

Improving your little one’s oral hygiene doesn’t have to break the bank. Take this affordable toddler toothpaste, for instance. It comes in a three-pack for around $5—what a great deal! And just because you’re saving on money doesn’t mean you’ll miss out on quality. Just like our other top picks, this ADA-approved toddler toothpaste is made with fluoride to fight against cavities. Plus, it’s free from sugar to further protect brand-new pearly whites from tooth decay.

Size: 4.6 oz. | Active ingredients: Sodium fluoride (0.243%) | Age rating: 2+ years old

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Best fluoride-free baby toothpaste

Orajel Kids Paw Patrol Fluoride-Free Training Toothpaste, Natural Fruity Fun Flavor
Image: Target
What We Love
  • Suitable throughout infancy and toddlerhood
  • Made without SLS
  • Free from artificial dyes, sweeteners and colors
Things To Consider
  • Doesn’t contain fluoride
  • Doesn’t have an ADA seal of approval
  • Doesn’t come in a multipack

While the AAPD, ADA and AAP advise that babies and toddlers use toothpaste with fluoride from the get-go, some parents prefer using a fluoride-free option. This training gel is fluoride-free, and gently cleans teeth and gums from plaque and food. Another highlight: It can be used by newborns, infants and toddlers alike. You’ll also appreciate how this baby toothpaste made entirely from naturally sourced ingredients, and your little one will love the fruity flavor.

Size: 1.5 oz. | Active ingredients: N/A | Age rating: 0 to 3 years old

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How We Chose the Best Toothpaste for Toddlers and Infants

To help you pick out the best toothpaste for your little one, we did the bulk of the research, so you don’t have to spend time scrolling through dozens of products. We browsed toothpaste options from leading brands and online retailers, and considered a list of criteria when sourcing products for our roundup, such as value, product size, ingredient list and flavor. As per guidance from the AAPD, ADA, AAP and our expert, we also prioritized options that contain fluoride.

To determine which baby and toddler toothpastes are the best on the market, we read user reviews to see how these products have worked for real families, and didn’t consider anything with less than an average four-star rating. What’s more, we chatted with a pediatric dentist to understand essential ingredients and safety considerations to keep top of mind as you shop. Last but certainly not least, we also followed the safety recommendations of the AAPD, ADA and AAP, and looked for seals of approval from the ADA.

Interested in learning more about our editorial process? Read about how our team develops and reviews all articles here.

Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.


Mitali Y. Patel, DDS, is a board-certified pediatric dentist based out of Atlanta, Georgia. She earned her degree from Columbia University School of Dental and Oral Surgery, and completed her residency at New York Methodist Hospital and Children's National Medical Center.

American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), American Academy of Pediatrics: Fluoride Remains a Powerful Tool to Prevent Tooth Decay, November 2020

American Dental Association (ADA), Toothpastes, July 2021

Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial process.

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