Can I Whiten My Teeth Without Using Any Fancy Products?

Choose natural remedies to whiten your smile.

Photo: Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images

White teeth are nice to look at, no arguments there. Not-so-white teeth, not so attractive. The abundance of tooth-whitening products on the market can make a girl wonder where to turn to get the whitest, brightest smile without spending a lot of money. Truth is, forget all of the fancy-schmancy gels, strips and polishes. You can brighten your smile at home with simple, everyday, natural products.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is most often known as a neutralizer of unsavory smells, but it can also whiten your teeth with the help of some hydrogen peroxide. Yes, that same stuff you use to clean a cut or scrape can make your teeth dazzle with brightness. Mix together a teaspoon or so of baking soda with just a few drops of hydrogen peroxide. The texture you're going for is a paste that's loose enough to brush your teeth with, but thick enough to stay on the toothbrush. Don't expect any minty-fresh flavor; your homemade whitening toothpaste will taste salty and generally "blah." But the whitening effect is worth it, right?

Lemon Juice

When life gives you lemons, make a natural tooth-whitening product! If you've ever highlighted your hair with lemon juice, you already know that the fresh-smelling fruit works exceptionally well as a bleaching agent. Stock up on lemons to whiten your smile, and save a few bucks in the process. Lemons are way cheaper than whitening strips. Combine fresh lemon juice with salt, using three times as much lemon as salt. Swish the mixture in your mouth and spit. Spit really well, because the lemony-salty goodness doesn't taste so good at all, and could upset your delicate stomach.

Strawberries

Whitening your teeth without fancy products can't get easier than eating strawberries. Really. Strawberries are bursting with flavor, but also with malic acid, which acts as a whitening agent. If you don't enjoy strawberries, you can still benefit from their whitening abilities by making a strawberry puree to put on your teeth. Sounds odd, but give it a try. Mash up one strawberry into 1/2 tsp. of baking soda. Get down and dirty by smearing the paste on your teeth. After five minutes, brush your teeth with your normal toothpaste to remove the strawberries, along with the natural sugars that can lead to tooth decay.

Dental Care

Taking care of your teeth will not necessarily make them whiter, but it can prevent problems that will interfere with a healthy, sexy smile. Brushing and flossing daily removes plaque, which can build up on your teeth and make them appear yellow-y in color. Visit a dentist twice a year for a thorough cleaning.

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