What is the Cheapest Way to Whiten Your Teeth? (2024)

Table of Contents

  1. Pros & Cons of Whitening
  2. Several Approaches to Whitening
  3. References

There are many ways to whiten your teeth, ranging from affordable to very expensive. Over-the-counter options, like whitening toothpastes, strips, and kits, tend to be the cheapest options.

If you feel self-conscious about the brightness of your smile, you are far from alone. Most adults in the United States worry that their teeth are yellow, off-color, or somehow too dark. Teeth whitening is one of the more common cosmetic options available through your dentist, but it is not likely to be covered by your insurance, like regular cleanings are.

Thanks to advances in whitening technology, there are more effective, more affordable, and safer at-home whitening kits available for purchase online. There are many companies now that are dedicated entirely to developing and manufacturing these whitening products, including peroxide-based gels and toothpastes with LED mouthpieces.

Whitening kits work very well for people with persistent stains from coffee or wine, but they may not work for other types of stains, especially those related to underlying health problems. The only way to know why your teeth are off-colored is to visit your dentist.

At-home whitening kits carry some risk if you do not know why your smile is not as bright as you want it. This may be especially true if you get the least expensive possible option, which may not offer the best protection or the best whitening results.

The Pros & Cons of Whitening Your Teeth

One of the main causes of yellow or stained teeth is diet. If you love coffee, blueberries, balsamic vinegar or soy sauce, curry, barbecue sauce, or even marinara sauce, you are more likely to have off-colored teeth. You can limit your intake of these foods, and that is probably the healthiest option.

Many people are genetically more likely to struggle with stained teeth even when eating a healthy amount of these foods or drinks, compared to others. In these causes, a whitening kit is an excellent option to help you lift stains and get a pearly white smile.

Whitening toothpastes, whitening strips, and whitening kits that include a special gel and LED mouthguard are all ways to improve the look of your teeth. These are simple, cost-effective, and rapid. You can get at least a few shades whiter in a matter of days or weeks. However, there are some downsides to these products.

  • Whitening toothpastes: While toothpaste is the most cost-effective option for brightening your smile, whitening toothpastes do not bring the whiteness of your teeth up very fast. Instead, they use abrasive additives like baking soda to scrub away a small amount of stain.

    You can get some lightening from using them, but your teeth may not change more than a shade or two. This can be disappointing for many people.

  • Whitening strips and gels: At-home whitening kits, including strips and special serums or gels, tend to have harsh chemicals in them, like hydrogen peroxide or bleach. While it is safe for someone with healthy teeth to use these kits occasionally, using them often can wear down the enamel on your teeth, which makes you more susceptible to periodontal disease and gum problems.

    If you have sensitive teeth, you likely have thin enamel already, and many of these over-the-counter or online options may not be safe for you to use regularly. If you have underlying dental health problems, whitening your teeth with harsh chemicals will not get rid of the disease, so you are not likely to get long-lasting results.

While some whitening kits that are available online are less than $60 upfront, their results may not last long. Some recommend consistent treatment, but this may not be safe or healthy for you. A slightly more expensive kit, with a different approach to treatment and a warranty on lasting results, can mean you can get results you love, or you can get a refund if you aren’t happy.

Additionally, you should never attempt at-home whitening unless you also get regular dental treatment to manage periodontal disease.

Eat healthy foods, avoid too much sugar, and find the right combination of affordability and efficacy when looking at at-home whitening kits.

Brighter Teeth Require Several Approaches

Safe at-home whitening kits, even those activated with LED light, tend to contain about 0.1 percent hydrogen peroxide, so you will not rapidly dissolve the enamel on your teeth. Only dentists can safely use higher concentrations.

Even with at-home whitening, you must use the kit as instructed. Don’t leave the treatments on for longer than instructed. Even a small amount of hydrogen peroxide, applied regularly, can lead to damage to enamel, which can in turn cause cavities, gum disease, yellower teeth, cracked teeth, and underlying gum and tooth decay. If you overuse it, you can accidentally make your smile worse as you try your best to improve it.

The best way to keep your smile glistening and bright is with regular dentist appointments, a strong oral hygiene routine that includes flossing, and, when needed, whitening treatments.

Disclaimer: This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to serve as dental or other professional health advice and is not intended to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any condition or symptom. You should consult a dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.

Back to Whitening articles

What is the Cheapest Way to Whiten Your Teeth? (2024)


What is the Cheapest Way to Whiten Your Teeth? ›

Over-the-counter options, like whitening toothpastes, strips, and kits, tend to be the cheapest options. If you feel self-conscious about the brightness of your smile, you are far from alone.

What's the cheapest way to get your teeth whitened? ›

Try At-Home Whitening Products

A whitening treatment from your dentist can be quite effective — but also quite expensive. However, combining your whitening toothpaste with one of the following over-the-counter options can give results that will surely make you smile: Gel strips. Whitening pens.

What actually whitens your teeth fast? ›

The best way to whiten teeth by removing stains is whitening toothpaste and an electric toothbrush. For more dramatic results, the best teeth whitening method is a custom-fitted whitening gel tray. While many people aim for the sparkliest smile they can achieve, whiter teeth don't actually equal healthier teeth.

What is the most powerful way to whiten teeth? ›

Professional teeth whitening is usually the most effective option, but it is also more expensive than at-home teeth whitening kits. Over-the-counter teeth whitening products are typically safe and effective, but they may take longer to produce results than professional teeth whitening treatments.

Is it okay to brush your teeth with baking soda and hydrogen peroxide? ›

For deeper cleaning, people safely can mix baking soda with a small amount of hydrogen peroxide to create a toothpaste. However, since hydrogen peroxide can sting, people with sensitive teeth and gums should discontinue using this paste if they experience pain or discomfort.

What is the best teeth whitening product that actually works? ›

Known as the No. 1 dentist-recommended at-home teeth-whitening product, you can't go wrong with Crest 3D Whitestrips. They're formulated with the same hydrogen-peroxide whitening ingredient that dentists use, which will help enhance your smile after a recommended ten days of use.

How can I make my teeth 100% white? ›

Intrinsic whitening: Intrinsic whitening is a process that uses a bleaching agent (carbamide peroxide) to change the color of the enamel of your teeth.
  1. Use whitening toothpaste. ...
  2. Switch to an electric toothbrush. ...
  3. Get a professional tooth whitening treatment. ...
  4. Get a custom whitening gel tray. ...
  5. Apply whitening strips.
Feb 17, 2023

What whitens teeth in one day? ›

A mixture of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide has been proven to work in some cases for instant results in a pinch. Combine two tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide with one tablespoon of baking soda. Mix it until it becomes a paste and use it to brush your teeth.

Does apple cider vinegar whiten teeth? ›

Due to it's high acidity, ACV is not recommended for teeth whitening. If you use it, it is best to dilute it and ensure you are rinsing your teeth afterward. There are better alternatives for teeth whitening, including the use of teeth whitening strips, hydrogen peroxide, or baking soda.

What do dentists use to whiten teeth? ›

Carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide are commonly used in whitening interventions and can readily permeate dental hard tissues. Temporary tooth sensitivity and gingival inflammation are the most common adverse effects of vital tooth whitening.

How to whiten teeth in 2 minutes? ›

Baking-powder eliminates stains on the surface of your teeth and lemon juice as we already said has multiple components that lighten teeth. Just mix a teaspoon of baking powder and a teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice and brush your teeth with the paste this mixture will work wonders in just two minutes.

How to whiten teeth over 60? ›

Bleaching Trays

Compared to commercial products, whitening trays from your dentist are stronger and much safer for seniors in particular. As you age, your gums and teeth can become more sensitive. Your dentist can first evaluate your oral health to determine if you are eligible to receive teeth whitening.

How do you make homemade teeth whitening? ›

Pinterest Tip: Mix 3 teaspoons of baking soda with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. Use a Q-tip or cotton ball and gently swab teeth. After 30 seconds, rinse and brush teeth.

How to make teeth whiter in 3 minutes with baking soda? ›

How to whiten teeth with baking soda and water
  1. Add one teaspoon of baking soda to a small bowl.
  2. Mix in a few drops of water.
  3. Stir until it becomes a paste.
  4. Apply mixture to toothbrush and brush it on your teeth.
  5. Leave the paste on your teeth for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Rinse out thoroughly with water and you're done.
Dec 25, 2023

Why did my gums turn white after using peroxide and baking soda? ›

When a chemical burn occurs, the area becomes mildly sore, turns white, and will eventually flake off.

Can you get your teeth whitened in one session? ›

It often requires numerous 30- or 60-minute in-office sessions with teeth whitening dentists near you to achieve the most dramatic effects, typically involving teeth being three to eight colors brighter. Some dentists employ procedures that may be finished in a single, two-hour visit.

Are dentist teeth whitening kits worth it? ›

The answer depends on your goals and budget. Professional teeth whitening is probably your best bet if you're looking for fast, dramatic results. If you're working with a tight budget or are simply interested in trying out a teeth whitening method, then an at-home kit may be a better option.

Does cheap teeth whitening work? ›

Some home kits don't contain enough whitening product to be effective. Also, if a dental professional isn't doing the whitening, the mouthguard provided may not fit properly so some of the bleaching gel may leak out onto your gums and into your mouth, causing blistering and sensitivity.

Can old yellow teeth be whitened? ›

It's natural for teeth to appear darker as they age, but a bleaching product with hydrogen peroxide or urea peroxide can help turn back the clock – and a whitening toothpaste is an easy way to get a jump-start.

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