From whitening toothpastes to professional treatments you can do yourself, this is how to get perfectly pearly whites for good!
According to research 81% of us Brits obsess over how photogenic our teeth are with over a quarter you saying you won’t flash your gnashers in front of the camera because you’re worried they’ll look bad.
Obviously, Instagram filters are a teeth whitening miracle maker but if you are looking for something more long-term so you can stop smiling with your mouth shut and drinking your coffee/red wine/Diet Coke through a straw, we’ve rounded up our whiter teeth go-tos on your behalf. You can thank us later!
The at home professional whitening gel
We’re bombarded with kits promising whiter, brighter teeth, but most of these products don’t contain the ingredients needed to see results. ‘Hydrogen peroxide has to be present for any form of long term whitening to happen’, says celebrity dentist Rhona Eskander.
‘Non-professional whitening treatments are over the counter products such as strips and toothpaste. These products vary in their price, difficulty of use and effectiveness.’
In sort, if you want a guaranteed whiter smile you need to visit a dentist who will give you a professional treatment. These don’t have to be administered there and then; gel kits can be used at home alongside a tray that is created for you by your dentist.
Rhona recommends Philips Zoom, a whitening gel safe to use at home. ‘It’s a 6% hydrogen peroxide formula that gives you results within 3 days, with minimum sensitivity. Unlike some others you don’t need to keep it in the fridge,’ she says.
‘Apply a tiny dot, the size of a pinhead in the centre of each tooth in your tray and wear it twice a day for 30 minutes for 3-4 days. You’ll see results by day three.’
Visit Rhona’s website to book a whitening consultation.
The Foods That Naturally Whiten Your Teeth
Wait a minute, foods that can help whiten your teeth? Surely that’s too good to be true!
Well apparently, it isn’t. Founder of Honestly Healthy Food Natasha Corrett, working alongside premium teeth whitening toothpaste brand BlanX, has identified some key foods that help us whiten our teeth naturally, simply by eating them.
According to Natasha, the combination of a healthy diet and a product like BlanX toothpaste (that contains non-abrasive whitening ingredients) will help you achieve that perfect set of pearly whites.
“Strawberries are fantastic natural whiteners because they contain Malic Acid, which removes surface stains from teeth and whitens the enamel,” Natasha advises.
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“Another tip is to consume foods that ‘crunch’, this is because the crunching motion breaks down plaque, which is ideal for restoring whiteness during the afternoon. Foods such as apples, nuts & seeds, cauliflower and broccoli have a fantastic crunch.”
Natasha encourages us to avoid the usual staining suspects such as red wine and coffee, and instead urges us to choose foods that produce saliva when you chew.
“It’s important to keep producing saliva in the mouth throughout the day, to neutralise acid and help remove extra debris. I like to eat foods such as pears, celery and carrots, all brilliant for producing saliva.”
BlanX and Natasha have also produced a couple of YouTube videos with more top tips on which foods will help whiten teeth naturally.
For more more information, and to get your hands on a tube of BlanX (prices start from £4.40) be sure to visit BlanX.co.uk.
The good for your teeth gum
Chewing gum does NOT substitute brushing your teeth but chow down on one that contains the sugar substitute, Xylitol and it could help keep your teeth stain free. In fact, in Finland, schools even hand out xylitol-filled gum to kiddiwinks after lunchtime to prevent their delicate teeth from decaying.
Extracted from birch trees, it works by killing off the bacteria that dissolves the enamel on teeth. This makes plaque easier to remove and keeps your teeth jazzy and white for longer.
The every day whitening toothpaste
Just like peroxide lifts and bleaches hair blonde, it can lift away dark spots and stains on teeth, too. Called hydrogen peroxide, it used to be restricted to pro treatments but Colgate have snuck 0.1% of the teeth whitening wonder ingredient into their latest toothpaste. Giving teeth a serious deep clean, try it for two weeks and we bet you’ll see a difference.
The celebrity teeth-whitening trend
OK we know we keep going on about how much we love coconut oil and how it has a gazillion beauty benefits but it can help in the quest for whiter teeth as well by lifting away all those nasty caffeine-induced blotches and splodges. Oh and did we mention all the celebs are at it? Gwyneth Paltrow, Lindsay Lohan, Bella Thorne – see which other A-listers are screaming about Coco White here.
The quick-fix whitening strips
Only got a week to get your teeth looking twinkly? Reach for these dissolving whitening stickers that fast-track stain removal. Quite literally ‘melt in the mouth’, they use a clever peroxide-free whitening technology to leave teeth blotchless and your mouth minty fresh at the same time. A cult product in the US (and we all know how obsessed they are with tanned skin and a white smile), seven days of strip action is all you need!
The at home treatment
The lazy girl’s teeth whitening whizz kit, these throwaway gum shields might not look sexy when they’re in but who cares when they you get whiter teeth in 10 days? Containing gel that’s full of high tech calcium technology, just slot them over your gnashers every day for 20 minutes and any dull, yellow stains will vanish into thin air.
Using ingredients that break down discolouration bonds and leave behind fluoride particles that help increase your teeth’s calcium levels and strengthen it’s protective layer, you get an instant and long term effect so that’s all those teeth whitening boxes ticked. Plus, they work on both sides of your teeth so you can throw your head back and guffaw and not have to worry about getting caught on camera, oh yeah!
The professional teeth whitener
We’re a little cautious of the ‘d’ word but if you need a serious whitening fix, the dentist surgery where it’s at. Plus, when a single session can see you walk out with beautiful bobby dazzlers in under two hours, it’s tempting right?
Bupa have loads of services nationwide, from a basic clean and polish to the Zoom treatment that uses a combo of bleaching gel and blue light to whittle away stains and give instant results. It means you can choose which one is right for your gnashers depending on your budget or how hardcore you want your teeth cleanse to be.
By Becci Vallis