First made as a pesticide, triclosan has been around since the 1960s. In recent years, it made its way into a wide range of personal care items. Triclosan is best known for its germ-killing power. That's why it has been used in so many hand soaps and body washes. In water-based products like aftershave and makeup, it is a preservative. It also helps fight odor, which is why it's in deodorants and body sprays. Your toothpaste might have triclosan, too. Colgate Total is the only American Dental Association-approved toothpaste with this ingredient. The FDA approved it after reviewing data showing that it prevents gum disease.