My teeth have always been a part of me that I've never really been concerned about (neither good not bad way). I've got a pathetic fear of doctors (that might as well be because there are so many in my family!), but nevertheless one day my nan (who is amongst the loads of medicinal crowd) noted that my teeth are shockingly yellow (oh, thanks nan!). So I took the action (read spend a few hours on Youtube and blogs trying to figure out how to sort my teeth out without spending a fortune and without seeing any sort of dentistry smelling place). Here is a little overview of what actually worked for me the best and turned my teeth into pretty pearls without spending millions and without moving my bum from my sofa!
I've tried freakin tons of toothpastes, and trust me, no Colgate, no Aquafresh or similar 'family' toothpastes, that just doesn't work. No matter how whitening they claim to be, there is (at least to my pretty vast knowledge) a toothpaste which compares to Crest 3D White Advanced Vivid. It's a little miracle in a tube! According to Crest, it removes 90% of stains within 14 days and well it does. It literally polishes your teeth and it tastes lovely (fresh mint, but not 'painfully' fresh like some other toothpastes)! It not only cleans your teeth but also protects from cavities. The only problem you can face with this toothpaste is accessibility - because Crest is a US brand, you cannot get it in high street shops, but it's easy to order it either online in a few online stores or like me, off E-bay. In online store it's about £6, but when you lucky you can get it for mere £2-3 off E-bay!
Another toothpaste, that I think sorta works, not as good as Crest, but it does do the job is Arm & Hammer toothpaste, since it contains baking soda (the best whitening stuff ever, however might be aggressive to your teeth). The last whitening product I would recommend is Lush Tooth Tabs, however someone might find them hard to use, since they are sorta like tablet which you first need to chew a bit with your front teeth and then use toothbrush with them, which might leave you with little white bits floating around in your mouth.
Next very important step is toothbrush. I can't stress enough how much more effective electric toothbrushes are, especially spinbrushes. I used to use 'manual' toothbrushes (and you should stick to them if your teeth or gums are really sensitive!), I also tried electric toothbrush with that little round head, but the best so far (mainly for whitening purposes) is the spinbrush with a sorta double head. You can get the 'authentic' Crest one or just any spinbrush that looks like the one below - they are about £5 on E-bay or they have launched in Superdrug for about £3 now. They are battery operated, and the only downside is that the batteries run out quite fast, so I suggest investing in rechargeable 'stronger' batteries, which last for a while. I feel that the way they rotate/spin has got a very thorough cleansing effect on my teeth.
To be honest with you, I'm not that fussed with mouthwash, as I don't find it as effective as other steps, so what I'm looking at when picking one is if it feels fresh, if it has antibacterial ingredients and it if does not have too much chlorhexidine in it (which is an ingredient that can treat Periodontitis and gingivitis, and other 'mouth' troubles), because that stains your teeth black. Listerine Total Care is not too aggressive when it comes to the 'freshness', but it makes my mouth feel nice and 'clean'! It's on rather the expensive side, but you can get some good bargains in Savers and such, usually the price varies from £2-£4.
Now what really really helps when you need to get your teeth from the the devastated yellowness and toothpaste is not enough? Crest 3D Whitestrips work wonders, and I'm not even joking now. First of all you need to think about which type would be suitable for your teeth, as Crest offers them in different 'strength' - sensitive, vivid, advanced vivid, professional and others (sometimes they vary based on the edition and type). You can check the strength here, but I would strongly advise you do some Googling beforehand. Since my teeth are not that sensitive, I usually go for Advanced Vivid, although in the picture below you can see just Vivid (slightly less strong). They come in different amount, obviously depending on the price. I get mine off E-bay again, for about £10-15 for about 10 strips (upper and lower, which makes it 20 strips altogether). Obviously they are more expensive in online stores, because they're usual price in the US (where Crest is based) is about $30-$40 I think! You use them until you are happy with the result, I used them last year and used about 14 the first time to get my teeth really white. After a year you usually top it up or you top it up when you feel your teeth are not as white anymore, nevertheless, the toothpaste works great to keep them white.
They are super easy to use as well. Before you clean you teeth or anytime during the day (not after you clean your teeth, because that's when they are more sensitive), you put these seethrough tabs on your teeth and have them on for half an hour. Then you take them off, wipe your teeth with a paper tissue to get rid of the excess gel and I usually follow up with brushing my teeth to get the clean & smooth feel. Some people complain that they make their teeth sensitive and that it is painful to use these strips, however I think it depends on the nature of your own teeth and the strength of the strips you use, obviously you have to be really careful the first time and as soon as you can uncomfortable feeling, you just take them off!
I hope this post helps some of you and if you have any more questions, ask me below in comments or tweet me! This is obviously my own routine which works for me and it might not work for you, it's everyone's personal preference and depends heavily on the nature of your own teeth. There are loads of Youtube videos and blogposts about teeth whitening without ruining your bank account, I recommend you give it a try!
How do you keep your teeth white?
Would you be interested in a post about not-so-working (or even super rubbish) teeth whitening products?