I have used a number of different teeth whitening products, with varying levels of success. I had custom-made trays to fit my teeth and have tried the bleaching method. They’re quite a bit of work, and it is awkward having bulky trays on your teeth for 30+ minutes a day. Not to mention incredibly expensive. I have also tried the Crest Professional White Strips, which are expensive and you put them on everyday, for 30 minutes, and see results after about 4 or 5 uses (or 3, according to the package). This isn’t quite as awkward as the bleaching trays, but I was always paranoid I was swallowing the bleaching chemicals.
After a little research, I found something that I thought would be an effective all natural teeth whitener. I have used the recipe below, with success, but before starting any new oral health routine, you should consult your dentist to make sure it is safe for your teeth.
- 3 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp hydrogen peroxide (enough to make a paste)
- 1-2 drops peppermint essential oil (optional)
Mix ingredients together in a small bowl until a paste is formed. Make sure to add enough peroxide that there aren’t big chunks or specks of baking soda, because those can be abrasive and damaging to tooth enamel. The baking soda should dissolve in the peroxide.
Using a tooth brush, brush paste onto teeth until covered. Allow to sit for 1-2 minutes, then rinse paste off with water. Brush teeth with regular tooth paste to remove any residue.
Be sure not to swallow any of the mixture, and rinse mouth thoroughly with water when done.
The peppermint essential oil is to mask the flavor of the baking soda and peroxide. I personally don’t mind the taste without the essential oil, but I had my husband try it sans peppermint, and he acted like I was poisoning him.
I could immediately tell that my teeth looked much brighter! They also felt polished and clean, like I was walking out of a dentist cleaning. For one minute worth of effort, I think this is a great alternative to commercial whitening products. In my experience, after 2 or 3 uses, it is a pretty substantial difference. I am going to start implementing this as part of my bi-monthly routine. A tiny fraction of the effort and cost of commercial products, with no harmful bleach products, and substantially better returns.
From the research I did, it is not recommended to use this product more than 1-2 times a month. The peroxide is reportedly safe to use on a regular basis (source), but the baking soda is abrasive and it can start to wear on the enamel on your teeth and/or cause your gums to recede. It would not be wise to use more than recommended.
If this DIY whitener isn’t cutting it for you, try Activated Charcoal instead!
- Mix ingredients together in a small bowl until a paste is formed. Make sure to add enough peroxide that there aren't big chunks or specks of baking soda, because those can be abrasive and damaging to tooth enamel. The baking soda should dissolve in the peroxide.
- Using a tooth brush, brush paste onto teeth until covered. Allow to sit for 1-2 minutes, then rinse paste off with water. Brush teeth with regular tooth paste to remove any residue.