Glide Floss

August 11, 2023


Everyone knows that flossing is the best thing you can do for your mouth. Sure, using toothpicks and brushing your teeth are important, but flossing is even more important.

For a long time, I used to avoid flossing. The reason was that my teeth are very close together, and the brands of floss I bought at stores shredded instantly. When it takes 30 feet of floss, and 20 minutes to pick out broken strands of floss from your teeth, you are not likely to floss regularly.

One day I discovered Glide floss. Glide was W. L. Gore’s (Gore) invention, a Teflon-based dental floss that did not shred. (Actually, it shredded 100 times less often than all the other brands of floss.)

With Glide, flossing was no longer a hassle. All of a sudden I was flossing twice a day. For people with tight teeth, Glide was the difference between flossing regularly and cursing regularly.

All was well for about 14 years, and then around 2003, the Gore company sold their Glide floss to Procter and Gamble (abbreviated here as PG). For about a year or so, Gore continued to manufacture Glide for PG’s Crest floss product. While Gore’s factories were making it, the anti-shredding quality of the floss remained.

After a year or so, manufacturing control went back to PG, and Crest brand floss degraded to be merely “shred resistant”. On tightly-spaced teeth, it shredded often. Still, Crest floss shredded less than most other brands, so I used it.

With Crest floss, it only took me 12 feet of floss per flossing and 3 minutes to remove broken strands. So, I started a personal quest to find a “Glide replacement” floss that did not shred.

After many wasted purchases, I finally found Leader brand “Advanced Slide Dental Floss”. It was about half as good as Glide, and for years it was my floss solution. I could only find the Leader brand on the Web. Recently they too, changed, and now their floss shreds much more than Crest’s best floss.

Now, I use Crest Glide Deep Clean cool mint floss. It’s pretty good. I only need 6 feet of it to floss – and that is not quite good enough. I suspect I am not alone in missing the old Gore-produced Glide floss.

I suspect PG changed Gore’s recipe because they just could not master manufacturing it cheaply enough, or wanted to make more money at the expense of producing the best product.

Finally, in September 2011, I saw “Oral-B Glide Pro-Health Mint Floss”. While still not quite as good as the original Glide floss, it comes close. Oral-B’s Glide is now the best dental floss on the as of Thursday, October 13, 2011. Update for 2017, I now use Oral B Glide.

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