3 Ways to Whiten Your Teeth

From DIY to Sci-Fi, three methods that will have your teeth at their pearliest.

Even though green (juice) is the new black and being healthy is more in vogue than, like, Vogue, everyone has their vice. Be it coffee, Diet Coke or red wine, there are countless not-so-healthful ways we get through the day. We, for one, are barely human until we’ve had our AM café misto—and our evening Cab Sauv, but that’s another story. But a vice wouldn’t be a vice if there wasn’t some inherent bad-for-you property about it, and, in this case, the aforementioned offences are also common teeth-yellowing culprits. See where we’re going with this? Trust us on this one: yellow teeth will never be a thing. So we’ve rounded up a few trusty at-home teeth whitening methods that won’t require a credit-ruining trip to the dentist’s office.

 

1.

Baking Soda

The Promise

The benefits of brushing with baking soda are twofold: it polishes your teeth and makes them appear whiter (we mean, duh), and it fights bad breath (because ew, halitosis). Given that it’s likely already sitting in your kitchen cupboard, it’s also a pretty convenient option when it comes to teeth whitening, because, let’s be honest, a trip to the local drugstore is just not going to be in the cards when you’ve already applied your facemask and have your nightly Netflix queue lined up.

 

The Technique

Just like the promise of cheesy TV advertising from the ‘50s, this method is literally as easy as 1, 2, 3. Wet your toothbrush with water and dip the bristles into the baking soda until the bristles are covered; it should have a paste-like consistency. Brush your teeth for two minutes, spit, and rinse. Voila! you’re on your way to a brighter and whiter smile in no time. Important disclaimer: don’t go overboard on this at-home method; using this technique too much can erode your teeth enamel and increase sensitivity.

 


 

2.

Crest Whitestrips

The Promise

These gel-coated strips use peroxide to get at stain build-up and remove gross surface stains. If you’re a savvy customer service consumer, Crest Whitestrips are guaranteed to visibly whiten your teeth, or you get your money back. Crest has a variety of whitening strip options, which vary by level of teeth whitening potential (the strongest strips are the 3D Advanced Vivid and 3D Professional Effects Whitestrips, which promise results in three days).

 

The Technique

The basic MO is to avoid brushing your teeth before applying the strips. Then, peel them from the backing liners (placing one strip each on your upper teeth and lower teeth) and press gently. Fold the strip over your teeth to keep it in place, wear it for the required amount of time, then strip those suckers off. You might see white spots after removing, but they’ll go away after a few hours.

Be warned that, because the strips contain peroxide (the same element used to bleach your hair and your shirts), teeth and gum sensitivity may temporarily develop. If the problem persists, discontinue use, obv (beauty may sometimes be pain, as they say, but no point being a masochist when more gentle options exist—see above baking soda method).

 


 

3.

GLO Brilliant™

Personal Teeth Whitening

The Promise

This at-home teeth whitening system, which consists of a high-tech lanyard you wear around your neck and a mouthpiece that emits a brilliant blue glow, promises professional, long-lasting results, making your whites look their pearliest in no time.

 

The Technique

The GLO Brilliant method is three-prong. First, you prepare your lips by applying GLO Lip Care. Then, you squeeze a small amount of teeth whitening gel onto the fronts of your top and bottom teeth. Pop the mouthpiece in your mouth, press the “GLO” button on the control console (reminiscent of an early-era iPod shuffle) and get comfortable for the next eight minutes. Once complete, you can do up to three more sessions for noticeably whiter choppers before the day’s end.

As with the other methods, the key ingredient in the whitening process is peroxide. If you experience pain or discomfort, discontinue use (again, duh). As an alternative, you could try investing in a cool-toned red lipstick, which, with the right shade, can make your teeth appear up to two shades whiter and doesn’t require, uh, the slightly Sci-Fi reminiscent accessories. It’s called options, people!

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