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Listerine vs Cepacol Mouthwash

Updated on December 15, 2015
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For years, Yvonne has been developing a sustainable homestead complete with chickens, food plants, on-site water, solar power, and more.

Here's What I Think

It's all over the airwaves, "Listerine kills germs that cause bad breath, plaque and the gum disease Gingivitis. And Cepacol advertises that it "kills germs - freshens breath and is the # 1 brand in hospitals".

But which is really the most effective at killing bacteria in the mouth?

Dentists seem to prefer Listerine and hospitals prefer Cepacol.

Which to choose? Which to choose?


Listerine and Cepacol Claims

Each product has certain claims. Basically the biggy with Listerine is that it helps control plaque and Gingivitis. Cepacol claims to kill germs and aid in fresher breath. The label states that it is the #1 brand in hospitals.

Listerine Antiseptic Mouthwash, Cool Mint

* The American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance for helping control plaque and gingivitis.

* Listerine Antiseptic Mouthwash Helps prevent and reduce supragingival plaque accumulation and gingivitis.

* Helps prevent and reduce plaque build-up, gingivitis, and bad breath.

Cepacol Antibacterial Mouthwash and Gargle, Gold

* Cepacol Antibacterial Mouthwash with Ceepryn. Kills germs - Freshens breath.

* For daily oral care. No. 1 brand in hospitals.

* Cepacol Antibacterial kills the germs that cause bad breath.

* Cepacol Gold is the original mouthwash with a refreshing blend of cinnamon, eucalyptol and mint oils, and a cooling touch of menthol.

* For fresher, cleaner mouth, use Cepacol as an important part of your daily oral care regimen.

Antibacterial Mouthwash

Cepacol Gold Mouthwash
Cepacol Gold Mouthwash

This is my favorite, especially for gargling. It is not as harsh as Listerine.


What the Research Says

The American Dental Association states that Listerine is more effective at reducing the effects of the Gingivitis gum disease.

In a California State Science Fair Study of the effectiveness of mouthwashes killing E. Coli Bacteria, Listerine was the least effective of the 4 mouthwashes tested, while Cepacol was the second most effective.

In a study which tested 5 different mouthwashes effectiveness against 2 bacteria, Staphylococcus epidermidis and Bacillus subtilis. "For Bacillus subtilis, the #1 mouthwash was Therasol, #2 was Scope, #3 were Rembrandt and Cepacol, and #4 was Listerine. For Staphylococcus epidermidis, the #1mouthwashes were Therasol and Scope, #2 was Cepacol, #3 was Rembrandt, and #4 was Listerine."

The Cool Mint Listerine was the most effective in killing germs.

According to a New York Times (in depth A.D.A.M.), "Mouthwashes containing cetylpyridinium (like Scope and Cepacol) have moderate antimicrobial effect on plaque, but only if they are used an hour after brushing. None are as effective as Listerine or chlorhexidine, but they may still have some value for people who cannot tolerate the other mouthwashes."

Cepacol was the second most effective of 4 mouthwashes studied in a California State Science Fair Project at killing E. Coli bacteria.

In another study, Cepacol was the 3rd most effective of the 5 mouthwashes studied against Bacillus subtilis and came in 2nd against Staphylococcus epidermidis.

Retro Listerine Comercial

My Take on the Question

Listerine is more effective against the germs that cause Gingivitis, but because of the tingling sensation and it's side effects, can not be used by some people.

Cepacol kills more different kinds of bacteria and is more effective against certain staff bacteria and those that cause bad breath, plus it is milder on the mouth and throat so it can be used by more people. Cepacol is a better gargle for sore throats and to freshen breath.

Personally I prefer Cepacol, but will use Listerine a couple of times a week for dental health, but even the milder flavor is too strong for my taste.

Your Turn! Which is Best!

Listerine vs Cepacol Mouthwash

Listerine Is Best

Listerine Is Best

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    • diamond 21 months ago

      I agree

    • diamond 21 months ago

      I agree

    • Yvonne L. B. 2 years ago from Covington, LA

      However it is possible to eat foods that are contaminated with E. Coli bacteria. In this case the fact that Cepacol kills this bacteria would certainly be a good thing.

    • kellyma 2 years ago

      E. Coli isn't a bacteria found in the mouth, so Cepacol having the ability to kill it does you no good.

    • anonymous 6 years ago

      Not sure on Cepacol but Listerine is better than Scope according to our findings in microbiology in college, The Petri dishes showed Listerine inhibited bacteria growth more than scope.

    • anonymous 7 years ago

      bc i lyk the taste of it ;)

    • anonymous 7 years ago

      that the mouthwash that works the best is Listerine

    Cepacol Is Best

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      • anonymous 5 years ago

        I sometimes suffer from mouth sores, especially after a dental visit. There have been times when I could not eat because of the problem. I have tried Listerine and most of the other brands, but they only made the problem worse.

        I used Cepacol to rinse and after two or three times, the sores went away. It cannot be beat when you suffer from mouth sores. It works as well as the Oral B packets designed for mouth sores and you don't have to mess around mixing it with hot water... Just use it and walla! Relief, sweet Relief.

      • anonymous 6 years ago

        Best all around for me is Cepacol.

      • davidms 7 years ago

        Chlorhexidine is commonly prescribed after dental surgeries. It should only be used for the short term though, because it can cause staining of the teeth.

      • Yvonne L. B. 7 years ago from Covington, LA

        Unless you have gum disease, Cepacol is the way to go.

      Cool Mint

      Listerine Antiseptic Mouthwash, Cool Mint, 1.5 L
      Listerine Antiseptic Mouthwash, Cool Mint, 1.5 L

      Cool mint flavor is the best tasting of this brand.


      Listerine Puts Out More Ads in the U.S. Than Cepacol

      Which mouthwash do you use?

      See results

      Listerine Comercial Vid

      Didn't say enough? Add some more.

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        • profile image

          50WaysToProfit 5 years ago

          Thanks, I think you have a lot of good info, saved to my bookmarks!

        • Sabre1000 profile image

          Sabre1000 5 years ago

          Our Wal-mart doesn't carry it but our local Martin's does. It is NOT discontinued.

        • naturegirl7s profile image

          Yvonne L. B. 5 years ago from Covington, LA

          @anonymous: Perhaps, that particular drug store discontinued stocking it. still has several sellers with it "in stock". The Cepacol website: still shows it. There maybe a 1-800 number on the website that you could call.

          You may also try calling some of the big stores like Walmart. Hope this helps.

        • profile image

          anonymous 5 years ago

          my drug store,says cepacol mouth wash,has been dicontinued,for a couple of years,ive been unable to find it anywhere else.---all the others taste like,gasoline,or some diveritive of it.--i don't buy anything on the internet,but a toll free number,and credit card,and my phone i do.---but my druggist said on march 9,2012. that it was disconntinued,is that true?