Study reveals the cost of toothpaste can double over the year in the UK | Health

Dentists agree that brushing your teeth twice a day is the best way to care for your teeth. But depending on what month it is, dental hygiene can be a much more expensive habit to maintain.

New research has shown that the cost of a tube of toothpaste at some times of the year can double its price at other times. The price of other popular health products, such as Gillette razors, can also double depending on when they are purchased.

The consumer group Which one? analyzed comparable products from the three best-selling brands that were available for at least 42 weeks of the year between March 2023 and February 2024.

With toothpaste, at one end of the price scale, Colgate’s Max White Ultimate Radiance (75ml) costs from £11 to £25.20 at Waitrose. Asda and Boots typically priced the product at £12.

A standard product, Colgate’s Max White Expert whitening toothpaste, cost between £2.50 and £5 a year.

Ele Clark, retail editor at Which?, said: “Retailers are constantly changing product prices depending on demand, seasonality, agreements with manufacturers and what their competitors are doing.

“Keep an eye on the prices of products you buy regularly and stock up when the price is low, or ask yourself if it’s really essential to have your preferred brand and consider switching to a cheaper product that can do just as good a job.”

The researchers also discovered variation in the cost of mouthwash between stores. An example was Colgate’s Max White Expert Whitening (500ml), which was regularly sold at £2.50 and £5 in all major supermarkets throughout the year. Meanwhile, another mouthwash, Listerine Advanced Defense Gum Crisp Mint (500ml) costs between £3 and £6 at Boots.

Which? took a snapshot price for each product at the same time each week during the year, excluding multi-buy offers and loyalty prices.

Consumers often had to pay more for razors, particularly for some Gillette products. The Gillette Labs Razor with Exfoliating Bar was £22.49 at Morrisons when it was full price, but was often reduced to half that amount – £11.25.

Anti-allergy tablets emerged as another popular health product with significant price variations.

A 30-pack of Piriteze hay fever and allergy relief tablets at Waitrose was reduced from £11.50 to £8 between May and July 2023 and then cost £11.55. At Boots, the same product cost £10.55 from March to July 2023 and then rose to £11.55.

Which? The research showed that Asda was the cheapest supermarket overall for health products, based on a comparison of 107 comparable health and personal care products that were available in Asda, Boots, Morrisons, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Superdrug, Tesco and Waitrose across the year. Aldi and Lidl stock fewer brands, so were not included.

Which? All retailers were approached for comment. Boots, Superdrug and Waitrose said they aimed to offer the best value to customers through a range of deals. The other supermarkets did not comment.

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