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The Best Mouthwash

Last updated on September 2, 2022

We looked at the top 8 Mouthwashes and dug through the reviews from 11 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Mouthwashes.

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Mouthwashes

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
Pros
Cons
 Top Pick

Tom’s Of Maine Whole Care Sulfate-Free Fluoride Mouthwash, 6-Pack

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Tom's Of Maine

Whole Care Sulfate-Free Fluoride Mouthwash, 6-Pack

If you're looking for a fluoride mouthwash that is gentle and colorless, this natural option doesn't contain preservatives or artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners. You can choose from strawberry or mint options in this six-pack set.

Overall Take

Mild and EffectiveThis pack of six bottles of natural fluoride mouthwash serves as a gentle option if you're sensitive to preservatives or dyes.

 Runner Up

hello Natural Mint Alcohol-Free Mouthwash, 3-Pack

hello

Natural Mint Alcohol-Free Mouthwash, 3-Pack

You won't find any harsh ingredients in this natural mouthwash. Instead, the 3-pack is formulated with xylitol, aloe vera and coconut oil. It also has a fresh minty taste, which also combats bad breath while fighting against gingivitis.

Overall Take

No More Bad BreathThis mouthwash is alcohol, dye and fluoride-free.

 We Also Like

Listerine Freshburst Plaque Reducing Mouthwash, 2-Pack

Listerine

Freshburst Plaque Reducing Mouthwash, 2-Pack

Once a splash of this mouthwash hits your tongue, you'll feel fresher. The effervescent feeling is a hallmark of the brand, and there are plenty of active ingredients behind it working to kill germs. The menthol taste freshens up the breath immediately.

Overall Take

Tingling, Minty TasteGet fresher breath right away with this iconic antiseptic.

Pros
" Great value for money. Fights plaque. Keeps breath fresh. Readily available. Different bottle size options."
 Strong Contender

Colgate Total No-Burn Antiseptic Mouthwash, 3-Pack

Colgate

Total No-Burn Antiseptic Mouthwash, 3-Pack

Does the alcohol in many mouthwash brands burn your tongue or gums? Go with this alcohol-free formula. The peppermint taste and bacteria-fighting ingredients are still there, but with none of that discomfort.

Overall Take

No DiscomfortSensitive gums can smile again with this milder mouthwash.

Pros
" It left my mouth and teeth feeling clean and fresh."
Cons
"Users say it doesn't live up to its claim of 12 hours of freshness."

Buying Guide

If you’re diligent about your dental health, the most refreshing drink you have all day might be the one you don’t even swallow. We’re talking, of course, about mouthwash, that (usually) minty mixture that leaves your breath feeling fresh and clean. Ideally, that won’t be just a feeling. If your mouthwash is working the way it should, that arctic rush will be backed up by a deep cleaning of your teeth and gums.

Let’s get one thing straight while we’re setting expectations: No mouthwash, no matter how good it is, will be a substitute for a steady regimen of brushing and flossing. Still, most dentists agree it can be a powerful backup for that routine, helping to swish away bacteria in hard-to-reach areas of the mouth.

So how do you know which kind will do the job? Needless to say, don’t make your pick based on how blue and clean the actual mouthwash looks. The first thing you need to look at is the ingredient list, and what’s not inside the bottle can be just as important as what is.

If you’re using your mouthwash strictly to clean your teeth, fluoride is always a good ingredient to have on the list. It works in mouthwash for the same reason it works in toothpaste: Studies have shown that measured use can strengthen tooth enamel and guard against decay. That “measured use” is a must, though. Make sure you don’t use fluoride mouthwash as a breath mint, and limit yourself to a single thorough rinse before you go to bed.

If you suffer from bad breath, most any mouthwash can be a quick temporary fix. Here’s the bad news, though: Most of them won’t actually treat the root problem. The bacteria that typically cause bad breath can be masked by peppermint but the smell will come back unless you actually clean those teeth with a proper brushing. (Some may even need a tongue scraper.) That said, you can help that toothbrush do its job by using a mouthwash with cetylpyridinium chloride (CPC) or natural antifungals like peppermint or eucalyptus.

If you suffer from irritated or bleeding gums, most any mouthwash can help, except those that contain alcohol. (More on that later.) For severe inflammation, though, you may want to see your dentist. Chlorhexidine is an effective ingredient for soothing those dental walls, but it’s typically only available in a prescription mouthwash.

One ingredient you may want to think twice about is a common one, or at least it was until relatively recently. For a long time, alcohol served a lot of purposes in the leading mouthwash brands. Not only did it serve as a carrier for more active ingredients like menthol, it also did its part to kill bacteria.

The problem is that alcohol can be somewhat indiscriminate in what bacteria it kills. Alcohol’s “scorched earth” approach can leave your mouth with a tingling sensation that some users equate to cleanliness. But that tingling can be a painful burning sensation in more sensitive palates, and it can actually exacerbate conditions like dry mouth. At the end of the day, alcohol mouthwash isn’t the worst thing you can put in your mouth, but you may want to use it more sparingly.

If you’re a little overwhelmed by all those chemical names, remember that even the weakest, most natural mouthwash can be of help if you’re using it correctly. And when in doubt, look for a seal of approval by the American Dental Association. The ADA does its own testing, and it’s a good bet that your own dentist will give a thumbs-up to their recommendations.

Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
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Products Considered

We identified the majority of the mouthwashes available to purchase.
8

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

11

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: Home Tester Club, Tech Gear Lab, The Toothbrush Expert, Dental Dorks, The Toothsayer.

299,316

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 8 Mouthwashes and also dug through the reviews from 11 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Mouthwashes.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

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Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Colgate Total No-Burn Antiseptic Mouthwash, 3-Pack

Key Takeawy

Does the alcohol in many mouthwash brands burn your tongue or gums? Go with this alcohol-free formula. The peppermint taste and bacteria-fighting ingredients are still there, but with none of that discomfort.

What other experts liked

It left my mouth and teeth feeling clean and fresh.
- Home Tester Club
Pleasant peppermint taste with no burning. Some users claim fresh mouth feeling lasts overnight. Leaves teeth smooth and clean.
- BestReviews
Eliminates 99% of germs in affected areas. Reduces plaque. Prevents gingivitis. Gives fresh breath. Doesn’t burn the mouth.
- The Toothbrush Expert

What other experts didn't like

Could have a stronger mint flavour.
- Home Tester Club
Users say it doesn't live up to its claim of 12 hours of freshness.
- BestReviews
May stain your teeth.
- The Toothbrush Expert

What to Look For

  • Mouthwashes with alcohol can actually harm your mouth if used too often. For best results, rinse out your teeth and gums with the prescribed amount of mouthwash twice a day, after brushing and flossing.
  • If you’re using a fluoride toothpaste, wait a few minutes after that rinse, since your mouthwash can actually wash away some of the protection.
  • Swish the mouthwash around for 30 to 60 seconds for maximum protection. Anything less than that means it won’t really work and anything more than that is overkill.
  • It can be tempting but don’t rinse your mouth out with water after using mouthwash. Doing this can instantly disable all the work you’re counting on it to do.
  • It doesn’t really matter if you use mouthwash before or after brushing and flossing but if you rinse your mouth after brushing, that can undo the efficacy of your mouthwash. So it’s probably best to do it after brushing.

More to Explore

“I’m frustrated with the lack of selection in mouthwash flavors,” said no one ever. Mint seems like a pretty logical choice for a product that’s largely meant to keep your breath clean. Still, adventurous dental care enthusiasts almost had a breakthrough when Scope announced the launch of a new bacon-flavored mouthwash … on April 1, 2013. It did indeed turn out to be an April Fool’s prank by the company, but bacon lovers can continue to dream.

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