Clinisept+'s healing mouthwash won't make your mouth minty-fresh but it could mean less time at the dentist and banish bad breath and ulcers for good. That's if you can hack the strange taste. We tried it...

Any products in this article have been selected editorially however if you buy something we mention, we may earn commission

If you ever feel that unpleasant, arctic blast stinging sensation after using mouthwash, it could be time to swap to an alcohol-free mouthwash . One newcomer disrupting the game is  Clinisept + Mouthwash , £6.49. It launched in January 2020 and was picked up this month by online pharmacy Victoria Health,  when 900 bottles sold in the first weekend.

You use it before brushing and it's an acquired taste (think swimming pool) but fans are raving about the way it soothes and heals stubborn mouth ulcers and calms bleeding gums. It claims to kill 99.99 per cent of the bacteria that cause gum disease and tooth decay (and bad breath) without any irritation, so great news for dentists. Clinisept+'s director Ross Walker tells us that sales of the mouthwash have rocketed during the past six months. "People are doing their best to look after their teeth while they are not able to visit the dentist due to lockdown."

Over the last year, you've likely heard more about its big sister  Clinisept+ , £14.99, the cleansing antimicrobial spray used by facialists and aesthetic doctors  pre-and post-treatment, that delivers high levels of hygiene without containing alcohol. Facialists have long used it to cleanse the skin during treatments while frontline doctors such as Dr Sophie Shotter took it into the ICU with them (it kills 99.9 per cent of bacteria, fungi and spores as well as enveloped viruses, of which coronavirus is one).

The secret ingredient of both Clinisept+ spray and mouthwash is 'hypochlorous', something that our bodies produce naturally in response to infection and which is recognised as being highly effective in cleaning the skin. In the mouthwash, it speeds up ulcer healing and banishes bacteria that can cause gum disease.

Dr Sophie Shotter is a convert. "I’m a big fan of the Clinisept+ Mouthwash and have had it on my bathroom shelf since it launched," Dr Sophie says. "It uses the same proprietary technology as the original Clinisept+ product, but in a lower concentration. It is gentle on the mucous membranes of the mouth, but extremely effective at protecting against harmful bacteria which cause gum disease and tooth decay. I have also used it in my aesthetic clinic prior to filler treatments around the mouth area to decrease the risk of bacterial contamination.”

With traditional mouthwash, the stinging, minty-fresh feeling is caused by alcohol or something called chlorhexidine, explains Ross. And while they are effective bacteria busters, they can give you sore gums. It's a reason why many people use alcohol-free mouthwash, but these can be less effective at controlling bacteria.

This is where Clinisept+ Mouthwash aims to change the game. Testimonials from the brand include one user who said it they'd had no ulcers for the first time in ten years. Another claimed it was the only mouthwash that had stopped their gums from bleeding.

How do you use Clinisept+ Mouthwash?

This may seem like stating the obvious but bear with us. Clinisept+ Mouthwash should be used *before* brushing your teeth in the evening so that it doesn’t wash away the fluoride in toothpaste, which protects your teeth. This is less relevant during the morning as food and drinks wash it away anyway, Ross tells us.

What does Clinisept+ Mouthwash taste like?

The taste of the mouthwash is what really sets it apart from traditional mouthwashes - but we're talking oral health here not breath freshener. Rather than a minty-fresh taste, Clinisept+'s mouthwash tastes of swimming pool (if you use the spray, you'll be familiar with the smell). Unscrewing the bottle gives an instant nostalgia hit of Saturday mornings spent at the leisure centre. Because it doesn't have the cooling effect of many types of mouthwash you are acutely aware that you're swilling a lukewarm liquid around your mouth. After the first few uses you do grow accustomed to the unexpected sensation, but it's something to be aware of on first use.

I have to say, I do miss the minty freshness of traditional mouthwash so I'm not sure I would swap to Clinisept+ mouthwash full time purely for that reason, but if I was suffering from an ulcer, I'd undoubtedly reach for the Clinisept+ bottle for its healing powers. After the initial surprise of the swimming pool scent, it's not overpowering enough to put you off using. If you're looking for a kind-to-your-mouth mouthwash that banishes decay-causing bacteria and heals ulcer, Clinisept+ Mouthwash is well worth a shot.

Buy Clinisept+ Mouthwash, £6.49