Real Talk: How Do You Keep Your Teeth White?

Because mine are disgusting!

I mean, not really. They’re kind of off white. Like the color of your favorite coffee cup, stained with tea. And full of root canals and weird calcium deposits. So, the color of fun and danger.

Deputy Editor Ashley Cardiff has comically white teeth. Like, the kind of teeth that, if she lived in Elizabethan England would just get her all the marriage proposals. Which is weird because she also embraces danger, but claims that she does nothing to maintain her toilet bowl colored teeth.

I’m pretty sure she rubs industrial strength bleach on them every night and is too embarrassed to admit it. Just a theory!

Do you have nice teeth? What do you use? Since I can’t tan I figure I can make my skin look artificially darker by doing some tooth whitening stuff. Does actually going in to get them whitened hurt? I hear bad things. But toothpaste doesn’t work, right? Or have you found one that does?

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    • Ashley Cardiff

      Fuck you.

      • Jennifer Wright

        Your teeth look so pretty when you say that.

    • Chloe

      Bleaching kits hurt my teeth, so these days I just sort leave them alone. I don’t really drink coffee or tea, though, so it balances out, I guess? For a while I did use that Crest Advanced White toothpaste, which worked pretty well over time.

    • Jamie Peck

      I don’t drink coffee or smoke cigarettes, and I brush my teeth with some sort of “whitening” toothpaste that contains peroxide. Fascinating, I know.

    • Fabel

      I’ve been using Colgate Optic White, which is just toothpaste with a special toothbrush that goes with it (the “special” part being that it has little cup-things within the bristles?) I like it & it makes my teeth…um…feel whiter? I can’t tell yet if it’s having a noticeable effect. (The current shade of my teeth is white, though not comically so)

    • nicole diaz nelson

      Ah, an issue near and dear to my heart. I am pretty obsessed with my teeth. I use arm and hammer advance white for maintenance, but when I feel like I need to kick it up a notch, I use rembrandt whitening strips, because after 5 days I can seriously tell a major difference of a least one or two shades. I do drink tea and soda and crap but the whitening strips make my teeth feel a little sensitive so I only use them once or twice a year, and my teeth be lookin good.

      But if you feel like your teeth are super discolored, you should probably spring for a professional treatment, and if you use whitening toothpaste and even whitening strips at home afterwards you could probably maintain the lighter shade for a long time. I’ve heard it can make your teeth feel very sensitive for a while afterwards, though, so if you have sensitive gums/teeth already it may not be worth it for you. I’d say at the very least start with a whitening strips regimen and see if that makes a difference and if you tolerate it okay. They’re pretty cheap, like 20-30 bucks, and it only takes a few days to see the difference. Hooray!

      • OG

        I have the exact same whitening routine as Nichole and my teeth are noticeably whiter than most people’s. I strongly recommend Arm and Hammer. I’ve also heard that if you drink coffee/tea/soda from a straw it will keep your teeth from being discolored, but I don’t do that because it’s weird.

      • K

        I’ll also attest to Arm & Hammer Advance White! One of the few products I’d recommend besides the Dove bar. My teeth are very white and I drink coffee every morning (before brushing). I use whitening strips twice a year because I have a capped front tooth that I’m obsessed with matching perfectly.

    • Eileen

      I use whitening strips every few years and brush my teeth right after drinking coffee or tea. And don’t smoke.

    • Carole

      The Rembrandt 2-Hour Whitening Kit makes a big difference on my teeth. I use it once ever 3-4 months or so.

    • Chickalupe

      I prefer to use the all natural method of a strawberry and baking soda. The malic acid in the strawberry, combined with the baking soda, helps get rid of most stains without expensive kits or weird chemical processes.

      To try it at home, all you need to do is mash a ripe strawberry with about 1/2 a teaspoon of baking soda until it becomes a paste. Brush on teeth with a spare toothbrush, leave five minutes or so. Rinse, and then brush with your regular toothbrush and toothpaste to remove any residue. Floss can help get any berry seeds stuck between teeth.

      I wouldn’t do this any more often than once a week at the most, as more can damage your enamel due to the aforementioned malic acid. I have tried this several times with good results!

    • Erin

      Try Trident White gum. I started chewing it after lunch, and I definitely noticed my teeth were whiter after a few weeks. Probably not as white as they would have been with some whitening strips, but the gum is much, much cheaper, which is a plus. :) Minty breath, too.

      I use that and Crest whitening toothpaste.

    • Sarah

      I don’t really drink tea, and never dark/orange soda or coffee. Red wine, sure, but I brush after. I have used the Crest White Strips, and yes, they do work. They may cause teeth sensitivity, so be sure to use as directed. No treatment will change any calcium (white) spots you have on your teeth though – they’ll always be there, as far as I know. But give the Crest White Strips a try – do a before/after article on it and let us see! :)

    • Teresa Bristol

      I use a sonic are toothbrush as well as listerine extreme whitening per-rinse. I also use crests 3d white toothepaste. My teeth are super white and I truly feel that your toothbrush is key.