Worrying about how white your teeth are may seem superficial to some people, but I think it’s more often a confidence issue. It’s hard to feel confident and self-assured when you’re self-conscious about your smile. If you have found yourself wishing you had whiter teeth, you’re certainly not alone! It’s estimated that Americans spend around $1.4 billion dollars on over-the-counter teeth whitening products every year! (If that number shocks you, consider how expensive a set of whitening strips can be; a box of 20 sets of whitening strips will likely set you back over $40!)
But you don’t need to pay an arm and a leg just to whiten stained teeth. Today I’ll be sharing a simple method that will enable you to whiten your smile at home for pennies—literally! And there’s a good chance you already have everything you need waiting for you in your cupboards. But before we get into how to make and use this at-home teeth whitening treatment, let’s talk about what goes into it.
How to Make a DIY Teeth Whitening Treatment with Hydrogen Peroxide and Baking Soda
This treatment contains two inexpensive ingredients that work together to scrub away stains and leave teeth whiter and brighter. First, there’s good ol’ baking soda. Baking soda’s gentle abrasiveness helps to erase surface stains on your teeth and break down plaque buildup. (To read about all the other wonderful things baking soda can do, check out the link below!)
The second ingredient is hydrogen peroxide. The oxidizing action of hydrogen peroxide helps fight bacterial buildup by getting into all the nooks and crannies of your teeth and gums (this is important since baking soda is great for whitening but not for killing bacteria…) Hydrogen peroxide has been used for oral health for decades, is proven in clinical tests to whiten teeth stains, and has also been shown to protect against gingivitis. (If you’re interested in learning about more uses for hydrogen peroxide, be sure to check out my eBook Hydrogen Peroxide Magic! You can buy it in my shop, or download it for free if you’re an OGT Plus member!)
And finally, you have the option to add a few drops of peppermint essential oil to the mix. I mostly include it to make the treatment taste better, but peppermint oil also helps to control bad breath!
Now that we know what’s going into it, it’s time to show you how you can make and use this easy teeth whitening treatment at home!
Baking Soda & Hydrogen Peroxide Teeth Whitening Paste
1 Tbsp baking soda
5 drops hydrogen peroxide, 3%
1-3 drops peppermint essential oil (optional)
Add all the ingredients to a small bowl and mix well with a small whisk or a fork.
Scoop a small amount onto your toothbrush and brush your teeth as usual. Make sure to rinse your mouth thoroughly after using.
Use this treatment once or twice a week to naturally whiten teeth, and to promote oral health and fresh breath! (Yes, that means that this is not a substitute for regular toothpaste.)
I’ve been loving this homemade whitening treatment lately. Not only does it help brighten up my smile, but it makes my teeth feel as clean as if I had just gotten out of a dental cleaning! :-) I never seem to get that from my normal toothpaste…
Looking for another natural way to whiten your teeth? While I personally love this easy baking soda/hydrogen peroxide toothpaste, there are other ways to go! Best of all, this next method is all natural and easy to make at home.
Using Coconut Oil to Whiten Teeth
What can’t this stuff do?! Along with many other benefits, the lauric acid in coconut oil helps kill bacteria in your mouth, including the bacteria on the surface of your teeth that causes them to yellow over time. And because coconut oil doesn’t damage tooth enamel, this is a treatment you can do each and every day!
To get the benefits of coconut oil for whitening your teeth, try oil pulling each evening to make sure you’ve cleaned away the bacteria that’s built up on your teeth throughout the day!
Methods to Avoid
Apple Cider Vinegar
I’ve known for a long time that the ACV kills bacteria, leaving your mouth clean and healthy, but there are some dangers to using Apple Cider Vinegar as a DIY teeth whitening solution. The acetic acid in ACV can break down the enamel on your teeth over time, leaving your teeth sensitive and more prone to cavities and other problems. For this reason I recommend staying away from using ACV as a toothpaste or whitener.
Strawberry (or Other Fruit) Paste
As I’ve mentioned, baking soda is a cheap and effective homemade teeth whitener. And you may have heard of a method that’s become popular using strawberries and baking soda to make a natural toothpaste. There’s just one problem…it doesn’t actually work to whiten teeth! Tests show that while teeth may appear whiter at first thanks to the exfoliating ability of strawberries, this mixture doesn’t break down the actual stains that sit on your teeth.
If you’re looking for an effective, natural whitening solution, stick with the tried and true hydrogen peroxide/baking soda recipe above! Your teeth will thank you ;-)