Even as a busy parent, we all want to feel and look as good as is possible - but don’t necessarily have the time and funds. We take care of our hair, exercise and moisturise our faces every night to achieve this goal. Or at least, we do when we remember to. Even the little things can feel like a huge effort sometimes.
Aside from the aforementioned things, one of the key components to looking good is to have white teeth. It’s something that we tend to forget about in the midst of everything else, assuming our regular brushing will do the job. Drinking coffee (an essential for Moms!), eating dark foods and even your herbal teas can stain teeth, as well as just general wear and tear. Maybe the fact that white teeth are so unobtainable is a reason for why we prize them so much.
While you can have teeth bleached, it's not something you want to do too often. Or perhaps you just have an aversion to total bleaching and want something you can do for yourself, for less money. Here’s three options that won’t cost a fortune and can still leave you with a sparkling smile.
#1 Activated Charcoal
The idea of pouring a black powder onto your toothbrush, using it, and then teeth being whiter - well, it just doesn't seem to scan. But in fact, do it right and ground charcoal can lift stains from teeth. This is because it is adsorbent, coupled with its slightly gritty texture to act as an exfoliant. Many natural health advocates swear by this method, and it can't hurt to try.
#2 Hydrogen Peroxide
Image by Beshef
You can try using hydrogen peroxide if you're feeling brave - and careful. Hydrogen peroxide is a bleaching element that has many uses, and is a component of professional whitening solutions. Use it diluted with water and dab lightly on to teeth with a cotton swab, rinsing off after a few minutes. It's always best to use too little rather than too much. If you're trying the at-home chemical route, then using a whitening strip can enhance the effect between applications.
#3 Baking Soda and Coconut Oil
Combining these two together can have a fantastic impact on your teeth. Mix a little baking soda in with the coconut oil. Coconut oil has a melting point of 24C, so use your fingers to heat it if necessary. Then rub the mixture onto your teeth. The mild abrasive action combined with a beneficial oil can brighten your smile. Be careful of overdoing it though, as too much of a good thing can lead to damaged tooth enamel.
"But what if I need my teeth to look brighter right now?"
Image Credit: Annca
If you have an upcoming event, then the above methods aren't going to get it done. They tend to require regular applications over a period of time rather than providing an instant fix. The best sudden improvement factor goes to the activated charcoal, so if you have some time anyway, it's worth doing.
If you need a fix quickly but don't want a huge dental bill, then lipstick is your friend. Choose a red with a blue-tone. This is simple color wheel stuff; blue and yellow are opposite one another, so the blue cancels out the yellow sheen and dominates. It's a quick fix, but it'll do in a pinch.
This is a collaborative post with a contributor.