I wasn’t sure if it was working at first, because the change was so subtle, but then one day I smiled at the 9-year-old and she gasped: ‘Mummy, your teeth look amazing!’
What do you mean?’ I asked her. ‘Well, they look really white and shiny,’ she replied.
I gave myself a big grin in the mirror and realised she was right – the day-to-day difference might have been hard to spot, but I’d been using the Smileo teeth-whitening products every few days for a couple of weeks now, and the results were really starting to show.
I’ve been bleaching my teeth on and off for over 20 years – since before most people even knew it was a thing – but modern treatments are a world away from what you can do now.
The home whitening kits I originally used came via my dentist had quite high levels of hydrogen peroxide. It did a good job, but afterwards my teeth would ache and feel sensitive for days. The gel tasted pretty awful too.
I first discovered whitening strips on a trip to the US. They were quick and easy to use, and so much cheaper than the whitening kits I’d previously bought, but you couldn’t buy them here at that point, so whenever I travelled to America I’d buy a big box from CVS to bring home with me.
Then tooth whitening arrived here on a massive scale and suddenly everyone had shiny white smiles. There was now a huge range of bleaching products available in the UK, but I was wary, as it was an unregulated industry and some of the products didn’t seem like they were good quality. Age was wreaking enough havoc on my teeth, with receding gums and increased sensitivity; I didn’t want to risk using something than could ultimately weaken or damage them further.
But then I heard about Smileo, which promises visible results in as little as seven days. What I loved straight away was the fact the range focuses on gentle teeth whitening – it doesn’t contain peroxide, and is also vegan and cruelty free.
I was given the chance to try their peroxide-free teeth whitening kit (mouth guard and lightening gel), £59.99, whitening strips, £54.90, and charcoal powder, £34.90. After trying all three, I found myself leaning the most towards the strips, as they’re so simple and convenient to use – I’d put a strip on before doing my pilates practice, and remove it when I was finished 30 minutes later.
To be fair, the kit was pretty straightforward too – you just fill the mouthguard with gel, attach the LED whitening light and pop it in your mouth for 10 minutes a day. I used the charcoal powder, made entirely from coconut shells, after the gel, dipping my toothbrush to the pot and brushing it carefully over my teeth. It was a bit messy and took a little while to get the hang of, but after using the three together on and off for a couple of weeks, the results – according to the nine-year-old – were obvious.
Teeth whitening is obviously a cosmetic procedure and might seem a frivolous cost; for me, however, it’s important as someone’s smile is the first thing I notice about them. If I feel self conscious about my teeth it puts a dent in my confidence, so it’s an expense I can justify for the boost it gives me.
From my experience whitening via your dentist costs around £300-400 and uses professional grade hydrogen peroxide; with home whitening kits you might not see as dramatic a difference, but, at a fraction of the cost, it’s a much more attractive option for many.
Quick, easy, effective, and much gentler on my teeth – I’d absolutely buy Smileo again.
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