Whether you spend life on the road for pleasure or work, it’s nice to have the comforts of home as you travel the highways and byways. TRAILBLAZER checks in with folks who spend a fair amount of time on the road to see just what makes their home away from home. This month, we chatted with trailblazing Bite toothpaste tablet entrepreneur… LINDSAY McCORMICK.
HITTING THE ROAD WITH TRAILBLAZING TOOTHPASTE & MORE
Lindsay McCormick is the co-founder and CEO of Bite, all-natural, zero-waste, tube-free, 100% vegan, gluten-free, and cruelty-free toothpaste tablets and accessories on a mission to become the world’s most sustainable personal care company. That mission includes hitting the road in a converted Mercedes Sprinter to spread the Bite gospel.
PLEASE TELL US ABOUT BITE.
At Bite we make plastic-free personal care products that are better for our planet and our bodies. It started with our toothpaste tablets which are little dry tablets you bite down on, crush with your teeth and then start brushing with a wet toothbrush. They foam up just like commercial toothpaste but without any of the harsh chemicals or artificial flavors. They come in glass bottles with aluminum lids that you keep and refill with our compostable refill pouches. We now have a whole range of products, from mouthwash tablets to bamboo toothbrushes and more coming out this year, as well!
WHAT’S BITE DOING TO ELIMINATE THE 50 EMPIRE STATE BUILDINGS WORTH OF TOOTHPASTE TUBES THAT END UP IN OCEANS AND LANDFILLS, EACH YEAR, AND MUCH MORE?
All of our products are plastic-free, and our toothpaste and mouthwash tablets come in glass jars that can be refilled with our compostable refill pouches. This means we don’t need to use plastic tubes or bottles and our product is zero-waste (as in, everything can be easily recycled or composted). It’s perfect for camping, travel, and van life because you’ll never have to worry about a tube or bottle leaking in your pack and because they are highly concentrated, they will save you a ton of space.
The ingredients are also safe for wildlife, so you don’t have to worry about needing to spit it out on the ground when you’re brushing your teeth
or contaminating your grey water tank.
WHAT ABOUT YOUR PREVIOUS WORK WITH THE TRAVEL CHANNEL? DIDN’T TRAVELING WITH THEM LEAD TO YOUR BITE EPIPHANY?
While working as a TV producer, I was on a plane every other week. Because we were only in locations for a few days, we flew carry on only meaning I was taking those little toothpaste tubes with me and going through them so fast! It felt really wasteful and I wanted to find an alternative. Everything was packaged in plastic, so I decided to start making my own tablets and kept them in glass jars. That’s how it all started!
YOU ALSO HAD AN EXPERIENCE WITH SHARK TANK, RIGHT?
Shark Tank was such an amazing experience. Anybody who’s starting a business can learn a lot just by prepping like you’re going to go on the show because you’re going to be doing these sorts of pitches for investors and other sorts of business endeavors. Ultimately, we turned down Mark Cuban and Kevin O’Leary, but were just so excited to be on the show.
YOU HIT THE ROAD IN YOUR SPRINTER TO PROMOTE BITE, DIDN’T YOU? WHAT WERE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE DESTINATIONS AND EXPERIENCES?
We stayed on Bureau of Land Management-managed land outside the Grand Canyon and it was incredible. There was hardly anyone around, which is crazy for such a popular national park, and we could see so many stars at night. We also stayed on the cliffs in Big Sur. It was surreal to wake up to waves pounding hundreds of feet below and be surrounded by redwoods.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR MERCEDES SPRINTER. IT WAS A MAJOR REMODELING JOB, RIGHT?
We bought a brand new 2017 Mercedes Sprinter 170 Extended and totally gutted it. The conversion took six months and I’d equate it to making a tiny home that needs to be constructed in a way to survive a never-ending earthquake, because when you’re driving over bumps and all over the U.S., that is basically what it is!
WHAT DO YOU LIKE ABOUT TRAVELING IN YOUR SPRINTER VERSUS STAYING IN A HOTEL?
I love that everything we need is right there. We don’t need to unpack, there is no “oh, I forgot something at home.” We have everything we need right with us at all times and we can stay in amazing places that wouldn’t be possible without our Sprinter.
WHAT ARE YOUR THREE FAVORITE THINGS IN THE SPRINTER?
1. I love our queen size bed. At first, I thought it was not necessary, but my boyfriend is tall and our pup sleeps in bed with us so it’s great to have the room.
2. Our storage situation is on point. We put a lot of thought into where things would go and how to optimize the space and I feel like it worked out really well.
3. I love our windows. Our van has windows everywhere which is something that was really important to me. What it lacks in weather-proofing, it makes up for in sweeping views and feeling like you are in nature. Windows can be seen as a liability in vanlife/RV circles, but I wouldn’t change ours or the world.
More trips! We’re planning on doing the Southwest circuit this year. We haven’t spent much time in the desert and I’m really excited for some sand-soaked sunrises. We also have some really fun products coming out this year at Bite that are super travel-friendly and perfect for the road, so I’m excited to put those to the real-world test, as well.⎯