Friday, March 08, 2013

Good Idea Friday - Toothpaste on Your HeadLights

"How to Clean Your Car Headlights-with toothpaste"

This post is for a fan who asked how true this was. 
(Have questions or submissions? Post it on our facebook page!) 

So, can toothpaste of all things really clean your car's headlamps? Yes. Oddly enough. However there are a lot of things that can, so I'll explain how and why it works. Things like this often times will stress that it must be toothpaste, not the more modern gel styles of toothpaste. Why? Because more traditional toothpastes tend to have a higher grit content - if you put some on your fingers and rub them together, you can feel the difference between toothpaste and tooth gel. The gel has a much smoother gel like consistency. It's the grit of the old fashion toothpaste (bonus points if it's something with baking soda) that is what is really cleaning the headlamps. 

You can get the same effect using a dozen different things from around the house - a water and baking soda mix, a magic eraser, Bon Ami cleaner, etc. The goal is to cut through the grim and oil and dirt, which ultimately needs something with a bit of texture to clean away but not enough to scratch the glass of the light. This works well for a lot of things that need a little extra cleaning help - from your oil splattered toaster to the top of your cookstove to the rubber white soles of your converse shoes. 

So what do you think? Good idea? In a pinch I'd use it, but I'm sticking with my tried and loved melamine sponge (aka Magic Eraser) for this personally. I don't think my headlights care if they are minty fresh or not. 


  1. Yeah, I’d probably use this more as a back-up rather than relying on it all the time. The baking soda mix is actually my current backup, but it seems like I only need to buff it less with toothpaste than baking soda. My toothpaste has more grit, I guess.

    Enoch Ross

  2. It's very interesting blog. Thanks for sharing.

  3. It works but takes the clear coat off of your headlight so in time makes matters worse.

    1. Anonymous30/5/17

      But then clear coat over times wears out. Best to clean the headlights. Clear coat is meant mainly for the body of your car.

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