About this project
THIS IS TIO
Everyone is concerned about the environment. We all try to do our part — reducing waste, recycling, buying organic foods when possible. But if you're like us, you're left wishing that the products you use every day were created with the environment in mind.
We decided to take the matter into our own hands, and make a sustainable toothbrush we'd love to use.
The modern mass-market toothbrush, with its wasteful plastic construction and gimmicky design, was more than ready for a reboot. TIO is the result: a complete rethinking of the everyday toothbrush, combining the best elements of design, oral care and sustainability.
With TIO, we want to show the world that big changes to small objects can make a massive difference in our lives. Because as you know, it’s the little things that matter. So come join us on the TIO adventure — it has only just begun!
SO MUCH MORE THAN A STANDARD TOOTHBRUSH
Our industrial design background led us to re-examine all aspects of the toothbrush, from the aesthetics, to the ergonomics and functionality, all the way down to the materials used in its manufacturing. And in the process we got a crash course in modern dental care from leading industry and academic experts.
TIO is ready to take on the world! Here’s what makes it so special.
IT’S HIGH TIME TO MAKE A CHANGE
What impact can such a small product like a toothbrush have on the environment? Turns out: an absolutely huge one.
The ecological damage caused by the increasing amount of plastic waste we are producing every day is immense. Climate change and the pollution of the oceans are the first of many consequences to come, if we don’t make significant changes in the manufacturing of consumer goods. Due to their very short lifespan, personal hygiene products like toothbrushes are playing a significant role in this process.
By being smarter about design and material choices, products like TIO can seriously reduce environmental harm being done every day. But we need your help to make it happen!
TIO’S DEVELOPMENT: FROM IDEA TO REALITY
The TIO development and design process has been a long one — the initial concept was developed almost two years ago! Thankfully, without corporate priorities to hold us back, we had the freedom and determination to do everything right from the ground up. Take a look at our adventure so far.
THE PERFECT SHIPPING PACKAGING
To extend our sustainable approach even to the shipping packaging we partnered with the Technical University Dresden. The result is a tailored shipping packaging made out of deep drawn fibre materials. 100% based on natural resources and fully recyclable.
THE IDEAL ADVISORS FOR A COMPLEX CHALLENGE
Despite our huge ambitions, we knew that successfully reinventing the toothbrush was going to require support from experts in manufacturing, materials science and dentistry. Luckily, our ideas resonated with some very wise and equally passionate people.
Meet TIO’s team of advisors!
HERE’S WHERE YOU COME IN
We've grown TIO from wild idea to real product, with plenty of support from the connections we've made during our journey. But now we need your support to get started on manufacturing and bring TIO to the world!
Here’s how we’ll be making good use of your pledges...
Injection moulding tools for the toothbrush
The biggest investment required to make TIO a reality is the creation of injection moulding tools. In total we need two of these tools: one for the toothbrush’s handle, and the other for the bristle head. Thanks to our colleague Mr. Dreher as a manufacturing partner, we will even be able to produce the tooling in locally in Germany.
Deep drawing tool for the packaging
In order to mass-produce our innovative, environmentally-friendly cardboard packaging, we will need to invest in a so-called “deep drawing tool.”
First production run
After setting up the manufacturing process, we will be ready for the first production run. This includes both purchasing the various required raw materials, and covering our manufacturing partner’s operational costs to produce the first round of TIO toothbrushes for our loyal supporters.
For a young eco-conscious company like TIO, trust will one of our most challenging but essential commodities. To support our backers’ and future customers’ belief in our sustainable philosophy and practices, we will be applying for a Biobased certification.
Subscription service and online shop
Since TIO uses replaceable brush heads, we plan to develop and launch a brush head subscription service, to ensure our backers and future customers will always have a fresh TIO on hand. To ensure timely delivery of all TIO products, we will need to set up a online shop and find the right logistics partners.
Retailer and partner outreach
To ensure we’re ready to begin supplying like-minded retailers with TIO products, we will produce the necessary retail and point-of-sale materials.
Expansion of TIO product line
Of course the TIO toothbrush is just the beginning! Along with developing a children’s model, we’ll be exploring our options for equally innovative personal care products that could be added to the TIO Care lineup in the future.
YOUR PLEDGE OPTIONS
Of course every contribution counts, but here's a breakdown of the pledge options that will help us make TIO a reality!
COUNTDOWN TO TIO
Here’s our post-campaign plan — all the details about when you can expect to receive your TIO, and what comes next.
THE TIO TEAM
TIO was founded by industrial designers Fabian Ghoshal and Benjamin Beck, two friends who met while studying at the University of Applied Science in Schwaebisch Gmuend, Germany. Industry expert Volker Dreher rounds out the core team, validating our visions from the manufacturing perspective.
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge in this project is of course guaranteeing that the toothbrush can be produced exactly as planned, and in the numbers necessary to fulfill all of the orders we receive during the campaign. Luckily, we have been supported by our partner, industry expert Volker Dreher, since the beginning of this project. With his expertise, connections, and existing manufacturing infrastructure, we are confident that production of the toothbrushes themselves will go smoothly.
Another challenge was sourcing a sustainable bio-plastic that would both work with Mr. Dreher's existing manufacturing machinery and be available in the volumes required to mass-produce the TIO toothbrush following the crowdfunding campaign. With the help of our advisors, we were able to get a commitment from the ideal supplier, which means the TIO toothbrush is now ready to begin production.
Our cutting-edge, environmentally-friendly cardboard shipping packaging is a slightly more complex challenge, since this material has yet to be used in a mass-market product. However, in this case we again have the right backing, from our partner Dr. Marek Hauptmann, who will be working with us to find the right manufacturer to produce these materials. We will be able to make use of existing manufacturing machinery with only slight modifications. Dr. Hauptmann is also in the process of applying for grants that would help support the modifications required, allowing him to help us and like-minded companies more easily make use of this technology and produce the shipping packaging as planned.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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