Whether you have a big event coming up, have noticed some yellowing, or just want to improve your look, teeth whitening is a fantastic solution. White teeth can make you look more tanned, youthful, and accentuate your smile.
But with so many different gels and strips on the market, how do you know which to trust? Here’s the best teeth whitening treatment I’ve found and how I use it.
My Choice: Plus White
Over the years, I’ve tried many different teeth whitening strips and gels, and Plus White is by far the most effective and cheapest. It’s easy to use, yields quick results, and has never given me teeth sensitivity issues.
The full starter kit costs about $10-15 in stores. But once you have a mouthguard of some type (like the one in the starter pack!) you really only need the Speed Whitening Gel. You can grab it on Amazon for $9.66USD for a 2-pack which makes it under $5USD per tube. Each tube lasts several months if used semi-regularly (once a week or so). That’s WAY better value than white strips that often cost upwards of $50 for a box.
You can find it in most major retailers and department stores.
What You’ll Need
2. A mouth guard. I use the one included in the starter kit, but you can probably find one at the dollar store or grab one like this from Amazon. The key is for it to not be shaped to your teeth and flush – there should be room for a thin layer of gel to sit on top of your teeth, undisturbed.
3. A toothbrush and toothpaste.
4. Dental floss.
5. Cotton swabs (Q-Tips or similar).
6. A cotton round.
Steps to achieving pearly whites:
Step 1: Brush and floss your teeth
Do this to ensure your teeth are clean and ready for whitening. Flossing is particularly important to allow the gel to get into crevasses between your teeth.
Step 2: Fold a cotton round in half (or in thirds) and place it under your tongue.
This is a killer trick I discovered that prevents you from drooling and therefore swallowing the gel (pretty picture, I know!). It makes the whitening experience much more bearable.
Step 3: Apply the gel with a Q-tip.
Using a Q-tip, gently apply the whitening gel to your teeth, starting with the front and working backwards. Make sure that while you focus on the front of the teeth, that you also apply product between them to avoid the appearance of yellow patches. Do this for both your top and bottom teeth.
I typically only whiten a little over halfway back for a few reasons. First, no one sees the sides of my molars. Second, the mouth guard doesn’t extend that far. And third, I’d rather use the whitening gel on the parts that actually need it.
Step 4: Put on your mouth guard and set your timer for 5-10 minutes.
I normally leave the whitening gel on for about 10 minutes if I haven’t whitened my teeth in a while, and a little less if I’m whitening a few times in a week. Always read and follow the label. The tube I have suggests waiting anywhere from 5 minutes to 20 (for very stained teeth).
TIP: Try not to move your head upwards or downwards too much during this time as the product may shift and you may end up swallowing some. I made the mistake of cleaning my room while I was whitening, and bending down to pick up and fold clothes then back up to hang them was not a good idea!
Step 5: Remove and rinse.
Remove the mouth guard, throw out the cotton round, and brush the remaining product off your teeth with a toothbrush and water. This will ensure no residue remains. And don’t forget to wash your mouth guard!
You may also wish to floss your teeth again if it feels like there is still product left.
Step 6: SMILE and admire your beautiful teeth!
I find it takes about 2-3 applications to start seeing results, but it really depends on what you’re starting with. If I’m looking to get my teeth super white for an event (or just because!) I’ll use it 2-3 times a week for a few weeks to get them pretty white. But other times, I go a few months without whitening.
It’s really up to you to assess how much whitening you need.
Hope that was helpful! Do you whiten your teeth at home? If so, what product do you use? Have you tried Plus White?