Advice + Ask The Edit, + Makeup

Ask Belle: Teeth Whitening Options

Dear Belle, 

My wedding is in four weeks and I’d like to whiten my teeth before my big day.  Can you recommend a product that you like?  There are so many on the market, it’s too difficult to choose.

Thank you for writing your blog, Maggie

You’re right, there are a seemingly endless supply of products that promise to whiten and brighten your smile.  I’ve tried a fair number of them, and I certainly have some favorites and some that I would recommend you skip.  Let’s start with the bad list.

A few months ago, I purchased the CVS brand whitening treatment, which they market as an alternative to Crest Whitestrips.  Big mistake.  The “strips” were really hard silicone trays filled with toxic-tasting goo that had to be molded around your teeth.  It’s one of the few times when I felt the brand name was vastly superior to the store brand.

Speaking of Whitestrips, the Crest 3D Effects Advanced Vivid strip really works.  If you use it as directed, your smile will be significantly whiter in 1-2 weeks. I don’t recommend the Crest 2-Hour Express strips, however.  They made my teeth super sensitive and didn’t whiten them much at all.

My last recommendation would be for GoSmile.  I bought the GoSmile Smile Whitening System a few years ago, and I’ve been very happy with it.  It’s a bit of a pain to use, but the results are dentist quality if you use it regularly over the course of a month.

If you don’t want to spend $90 whitening your teeth, just buy the GoSmile ampoules.  I throw a couple in my purse to freshen my breath and whiten my teeth after meals.  The results take a little longer to appear than with the Whitening System, but you should see a difference within two weeks.

Lastly, if you’re just in the market for a really good whitening toothpaste, I use Rembrandt Deeply White and am impressed with the results.  It’s not a dramatic change, but they definitely keep my teeth whiter than my old toothpaste did.



  1. Alice says:

    I swear by the Aquafresh white trays. I notice significant whitening after just two applications. They have not caused any pain or sensitivity the way that other products have but they are a little annoying to have in your mouth for 45 minutes. Still, totally worth it for $30 and very quick results.

    November 26, 2013/Reply
  2. Isabella says:

    Hi Belle,

    Love your blog. I was initially drawn to this blog because the quality of your posts is steps above that of other blogs, and your advice is tailored to my demographic (i am in my twenties and work a corporate job).

    However, I’d like to make one suggestion to take the advice given on this blog to the next level.

    For posts like this, where Maggie is asking for a recommendation on a whitening product that you like (a question I am also interested in hearing the answer to), I am looking for at max one or two products that you highly recommend for whitening, and maybe a couple that you suggest we stay away from. A plethora of options, which is provided in the post above, are not useful to the reader.

    This does not hold true in all situations. For instance, a several options are useful when recommending colored handbags for the winter.


    November 26, 2013/Reply
    • Leigh says:

      She recommended two products and a toothpaste; they’re in different price points. She also mentioned several that she does NOT recommend. I really don’t see how your point applies here.

      November 26, 2013/Reply
    • ohraq says:

      if you read closely she says don’t use two products, use one brand (GoSmile) for whitening and then toothpaste option.

      If you are looking for a cheaper (but equal) alternative to crest white strips I recommend the Target brand… they are harder to find but $20 for 14 days instead of $40-60. I think the actual strips have vastly improved and work just as well as the Crest brand

      November 26, 2013/Reply
    • Q says:

      I don’t see how her answer was a “plethora of options”. She recommended 2 products and a toothpaste (3 if you count the Go Smile ampoules as another product). I like that she recommends products in different price points and also appreciates her suggestions of products to stay away from.

      November 26, 2013/Reply
  3. kat says:

    I use Supersmile toothpaste – kind of pricey but whitens really well. Results are noticeable with a couple weeks or so.

    November 26, 2013/Reply
  4. Susan says:

    Whitening toothpastes tend to be very abrasive. They lighten your teeth by removing some of your enamel. Over time, you will find your teeth irreversibly look yellower as the underlying (yellow) dentin shows through. Bleaching is far kinder to your teeth 🙂

    November 27, 2013/Reply