Dentistry
Cosmetic
Product Reviews
Updated on November 23, 2022

The Best At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits

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Best Teeth Whitening Products of 2022

At-home teeth whiteners are an effective and convenient way to brighten your smile from the comfort of home. There are many options to choose from, including LED kits, prefilled trays, strips, and pens. 

Some whitening products provide quicker and longer-lasting results. Others are less expensive but require more upkeep and regular use. The best treatment for you depends on:

  1. The health of your teeth
  2. How discolored your teeth are
  3. Your desired results
  4. How often you want to whiten your teeth
  5. Your budget

Our Top Recommendations

Our team tested more than 30 products. Each product went through an extensive review process. See more on this in the sections below. 

Here are the best at-home teeth whiteners available in 2022, according to our testing results and research:

Everything We Recommend

  1. Best Overall: Hismile VIO405 Teeth Whitening Kit
  2. Best for Fast Results: Auraglow Complete LED Teeth Whitening Kit
  3. Best for Sensitive Teeth: Crest 3D Sensitive Whitening Strips
  4. Best Value: Snow® At Home Teeth Whitening Kit 
  5. Best Strips: Spotlight Oral Care Whitening Strips
  6. Best Prefilled Tray: Opalescence 10% Peroxide Kit

How We Tested and Chose Products

We spent over 100 hours testing products in-house, talking to licensed dental professionals, and reading peer-reviewed studies on at-home whitening. Our testing/approval process is extensive and includes the following: 

Testing Standards

Our testers used and compared about three dozen teeth whitening products, including kits, LED kits, strips, pens, and toothpaste. 

whitening page

The testers have been using at-home teeth whitening products for a combined period of 10 years. They have also been running the content section of NewMouth’s whitening section for 3 years. One of them has extremely sensitive teeth, so he was the test subject for sensitivity. 

The recommendations in this article are based on first-hand use. We only recommend whitening products that were thoroughly tested by our team. 

  • If a product was difficult to use or caused unpleasant side effects, we tested it again to ensure it wasn’t related to ‘user error’
  • If we liked a product, we tested it several more times to ensure our findings were accurate and trustworthy

How We Didn’t Test

We didn’t ask dental experts to recommend their favorite whitening products. We believe hands-on testing is essential for validity and objective recommendations. However, this article was medically reviewed and directed by multiple licensed dental professionals. 

Approval Process

Our testers used each product extensively and compared them based on the following categories:

  1. Method of application (i.e., strips vs. LED kits vs. pens)
  2. Sensitivity level (and other side effects like gum discomfort or tongue burning)
  3. Safety (does the product have a safe bleaching agent ratio?)
  4. Ingredient quality (toxic vs. nontoxic ingredients)
  5. Ease of use (did the product stay on the teeth?)
  6. Length of use (long vs. short treatment times)
  7. Duration of use (how often do you use the product to maintain results?)
  8. Instruction clarity (were the instructions listed clearly on the product packaging?)
  9. Pros and cons (after testing, which products had more pros than cons?)

Meet the Experts

In addition to our own research, we talked to three dental professionals. They provided insight regarding the safety of at-home whitening, ingredients to look for and avoid, and how to choose the right product for your needs. 

  1. Dr. Khushbu Aggarwal Gopalakrishnan, DDS, one of NewMouth’s in-house dentists
  2. Dr. Gurpreet Sidhu, DDS, a dental practice owner at Lighthouse Dental Centre in Langley, BC, Canada, with over 20 years of experience
  3. Dr. Kate Zoumboukos, DMD, of SW Austin Dental. She’s also a Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry (FAGD) and a member of the American Dental Association (ADA)

What Makes a Whitening Product Effective?

We talked to three dental professionals about the key ingredients to look for in at-home whitening products. All agreed hydrogen peroxide tops the list. Many studies have also determined hydrogen peroxide to be a safe and effective whitening agent when used correctly.3, 4

"Hydrogen peroxide breaks down into water and oxygen. It is the most effective teeth whitener because it oxidizes organic structure and changes how light reflects from the surface," according to Dr. Sidhu.

Dr. Aggarwal agrees. To be effective, whitening products must contain either abrasives like hydrated silica and calcium carbonate and/or bleaching agents like perlite, hydrogen peroxide, or carbamide peroxide.

Abrasives work through mechanical action by removing surface stains. Bleaching agents use chemical action to react with the colored compounds in teeth.

Phthalimido peroxy caproic acid (PAP), a new non-hydrogen peroxide bleaching agent, has also shown promising results in being an effective tooth whitener.1, 5 

The 6 Best Teeth Whitening Products of 2022

Based on our testing and research, the six best at-home teeth whitening products available in 2022 are: 

1. Hismile VIO405 Teeth Whitening Kit

Best Overall
Hismile VIO405

Ease of use 4.7/5
Ingredients 4.3/5
Value for money 4.2/5

Cyber Monday: up to 50% off SITEWIDE

We chose Hismile as the best overall whitening kit because the product causes zero sensitivity thanks to phthalimido peroxy caproic acid (PAP). PAP is a new non-hydrogen peroxide bleaching agent that has shown to be an effective tooth whitener with minimal to no side effects (like sensitivity). 

Dr. Aggarwal and Dr. Sidhu agree that PAP is a promising whitening agent. It is a safe and effective alternative to peroxide that doesn’t release free radicals during whitening. The kit also includes the world’s first at-home VIO405 light, which has 32 LEDs as opposed to the traditional five in most devices.

In addition to PAP, Hismile uses remineralizing ingredients to boost enamel health and provide protection: 

  • Nano Hydroxyapatite (nHAp) rebuilds the protective layer of teeth and replaces lost minerals
  • Potassium citrate helps relieve pre-existing sensitivity 

One of our testers has extremely sensitive teeth. He’s tested over 20 whitening products, most of which caused some sensitivity. Hismile’s kit doesn’t, so he keeps going back to it. The kit also feels premium, effectively whitens teeth, and doesn't require 30+ minutes of use. 

Note: Some dentists believe PAP causes more sensitivity than peroxide. We discovered the opposite during our testing. Results may vary.

Hismile PAP product shot

What’s Included:

  • 1 VIO405 device and charger cable
  • 1 VIO405 travel case
  • 6 VIO405 whitening refills
  • 1 PAP+ primer
  • Instructions on packaging 
Delivery Method: Gel and LED light
Active Ingredients: Phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid (PAP)
Application Time: 10-minute sessions (1 to 2 treatments at a time)
Cost: $149

Pro Tip

Add the PAP+ Solution to the front of the mouthpiece's surface, so it touches the front of your teeth, not the bottom. 

Strengths

  • Whitens teeth with no sensitivity
  • 10-minute sessions 
  • Premium packaging and clear instructions 
  • Award-winning PAP+ formula (doesn’t release free radicals)
  • Hands-free mouthpiece

Weaknesses

  • More expensive than other kits (only comes with six treatments; refills must be purchased separately) 
  • Contains t-Butyl Alcohol, which can dry out the mouth

2. Auraglow Complete LED Teeth Whitening Kit

Best for Fast Results
AuraGlow Teeth Whitening Kit

Ease of use 4.2/5
Ingredients 4.3/5
Value for money 4.6/5

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We recommend Auraglow’s LED kit if you want a fast, affordable, and effective whitening experience. Although the whitening gel has a higher peroxide content (35% carbamide peroxide), Auraglow’s products are designed with sensitivity in mind. 

Carbamide peroxide is one of the most commonly used bleaching agents. It breaks down slower than hydrogen peroxide and may cause less sensitivity. One study found that it reduced tooth sensitivity risk from 67% to 89% compared to hydrogen peroxide.

One of our testers used Auraglow’s LED whitening kit three times (three days in a row). Her teeth were noticeably lighter after the first use and about two shades lighter after the third use. The kit caused minor sensitivity after the second use, but these effects were temporary. She also likes that the gel contains xylitol, which has known dental health benefits.

auraglow whitening kit 1

What’s Included:

  • 1 hands-free LED mouthpiece 
  • 1 carrying case and charger
  • 2 vials of teeth whitening gel
  • Instruction manual
Delivery Method: Gel and LED light
Active Ingredients: Carbamide peroxide (35%), which equals about 12% hydrogen peroxide
Application Time: Once daily for 30 minutes (7 to 14 days in a row), repeat every 4 to 6 weeks
Cost: $80

Pro Tip

Since Auraglow’s whitening kit has a higher peroxide content, we recommend checking progress after 2 to 3 uses. Take a break or try a lower peroxide product if you have thin and/or sensitive enamel.

Strengths

  • More affordable LED kit
  • Immediate whitening results
  • Comfortable, hands-free mouthpiece
  • Compact packaging for on-the-go whitening 
  • Contains Xylitol, which has dental health benefits

Weaknesses

  • May cause temporary sensitivity due to higher peroxide content
  • Gel is applied manually, which can get messy

3. Crest 3D Sensitive Whitestrips

Best for Safe Teeth Whitening
Crest 3D Whitestrips Sensitive Teeth Whitening Kit

Ease of use 4.3/5
Ingredients
4/5
Value for money
4.4/5

Crest 3D Whitestrips for Sensitive Teeth is our number one choice for safe teeth whitening. This is because the product has the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Acceptance. Any products with this seal have been thoroughly tested and studied. They must be proven safe and effective for at-home use via the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs regulations.

Our testers found that Crest Whitestrips (Sensitive) caused minimal to no sensitivity. Results were noticeable after just two to four uses. The strips also have great adhesion, making them easy to put on and take off. Lastly, the compact packaging makes them perfect for on-the-go whitening during vacation. 

Crest recommends completing the full treatment course (14 days straight) every 6 months. Depending on your desired results and reaction to the product, you can reduce this time. We recommend checking progress after 3 days of consistent use.

Crest 3d strips product shot

What’s Included:

  • 14 treatments total — 28 teeth whitening strips (14 upper; 14 lower)
  • Instruction manual
Delivery Method: Whitening strips
Active Ingredients: Hydrogen peroxide (5.25%)
Application Time: Once daily for 30 minutes (up to 14 days in a row)
Cost: $40

Pro Tip

For better grip, dry off your teeth with a paper towel before applying the strips

Strengths

  • Affordable
  • Reputable and well-known
  • Quick whitening results
  • Approved by the American Dental Association (ADA)
  • Whitens teeth with minimal to no sensitivity (lower peroxide content)

Weaknesses

  • The gel may come into contact with the gums and tongue, causing minor discomfort
  • Longer treatment sessions
  • More expensive than other strips 

4. Snow® At Home Teeth Whitening Kit

Best Value
Snow whitening kit

Ease of use 4/5
Ingredients 4/5
Value for money 4.5/5

Cyber Week: Buy one, get one on devices

We chose Snow’s At Home Teeth Whitening Kit as the ‘best value for your money’ because each kit contains about 75 treatments. Other kits on the market come with 14 treatments or less, so Snow stands out in this category. 

Snow’s whitening gel also includes a mixture of hydrogen and carbamide peroxide. These active ingredients are effective and safe whitening agents.3, 4

Snow offers original and extra-strength whitening serums. Our testers tried both. The extra-strength serum (more peroxide) generally caused more sensitivity. Because of this, we recommend using the original serum with less peroxide. Both were effective tooth whiteners.

snow whitening kit

What’s Included:

  • 3 teeth whitening wands (75+ treatments) 
  • 1 extra-strength whitening wand 
  • 1 LED mouthpiece 
  • Shade guide
  • Instruction manual
Delivery Method: Whitening strips
Active Ingredients: Hydrogen and carbamide peroxide
Application Time: 10 to 30 minutes (up to 30 days in a row)
Cost: $149

Strengths

  • Good value for the money (75+ treatments per package) 
  • A best-selling whitening kit; premium packaging
  • Comfortable mouthpiece

Weaknesses

  • More expensive than other options
  • Peroxide concentration isn’t listed on the website or packaging

5. Spotlight Oral Care Whitening Strips

Best Value
Spotlight Teeth Whitening Strips

Ease of use 4.5/5
Ingredients 4.2/5
Value for money 4.3/5

Spotlight Oral Care was founded by a team of dentists, Dr. Lisa and Dr. Vanessa. These professional-grade whitening strips are made with the active ingredient hydrogen peroxide. They recommend using the strips for one hour a day for 14 days to achieve a whiter, brighter smile.

Our testers tried more than 10 different whitening strips. Spotlight Oral Care’s strips stood out because they stuck to the teeth well, caused minimal sensitivity after multiple uses, and were easy to apply and take off. 

The results were noticeable after just one use, which is rare for whitening strips. The packaging is high-quality and includes a carrying case. The comforting gum oil was also a nice addition (apply for 5 minutes after using the strips to reduce discomfort).

spotlight whitening strips 1

What’s Included:

  • 14 treatments total — 28 teeth whitening strips (14 upper; 14 lower)
  • Carrying case for the strips
  • Comforting gum oil pen to reduce discomfort
  • Instructions
Delivery Method: Whitening strips
Active Ingredients: Hydrogen peroxide (10%)
Application Time: Once daily for 1 hour (up to 14 days in a row)

Strengths

  • Dentist-designed 
  • Gum oil included to reduce discomfort after whitening 
  • Noticeable changes after first use
  • Easy application; strips adhere to the teeth and don’t slip
  • Perfect for travel (comes with a carrying case)

Weaknesses

  • Longer wear time 
  • May cause temporary sensitivity due to higher peroxide content

6. Opalescence Go (10% Hydrogen Peroxide)

Best Prefilled Tray
Opalescence Go 10 Hydrogen

Ease of use 4.8/5
Ingredients
3.6/5
Value for money
4.1/5

Opalescence Go (10% Peroxide) is our top pick for prefilled whitening trays because they are extremely convenient and easy to use. 

Of all the whitening products we tested, these were the most comfortable. The trays adhere to the teeth instantly and cover your entire smile (not just the front six teeth). This provides more even whitening results. 

No gel leaked through, and the trays stayed in place throughout the treatment session. Whitening strips often leak midway through treatment, but these trays did not. Overall, the quality of these whitening trays is superior to any whitening strip or tray we tested. 

Opalescence product shot

What’s Included:

  • 14 treatments total — 28 teeth whitening strips (14 upper; 14 lower)
  • Nice carrying case for the strips
  • Instructions
Delivery Method: Prefilled trays
Active Ingredients: Hydrogen peroxide (10%)
Application Time: 30 to 60 minutes a day (up to 10 days in a row)

Strengths

  • Almost immediate whitening results
  • Inner trays mold to all teeth, providing even whitening
  • Very comfortable and easy to apply/remove
  • Single use trays; great for travel

Weaknesses

  • Contains potential allergens (SLS and flavorings) 
  • May cause temporary sensitivity due to higher peroxide content

Our General Recommendations for At-Home Whitening

Before getting into specific recommendations, we developed general guidelines based on our experience using various at-home whitening products. Keep in mind that these are opinions. Talk to your dentist if you have any concerns about whitening your teeth. 

  • We believe whitening kits offer better value for the money than whitening strips. The results last longer (sometimes a couple of months) after completing a full course of treatment. This is because they often have higher levels of peroxide than the strips. 
  • Whitening strips are a great option if you are on a budget and don’t mind the upkeep. Whitening kits are usually more expensive because they include higher-peroxide gels, trays, LED lights, etc.
  • We recommend whitening strips over pens because they provide more even whitening, aren’t as messy, and require less upkeep. Pens must also be used daily, sometimes twice daily, to maintain results. 
  • We prefer kits, strips, and pens more than whitening toothpaste (they can be abrasive, and the results aren’t as vibrant). We recommend choosing a product with a low relative dentin abrasivity (RDA) score and using it for maintenance. 
  • Professional, in-office whitening is best if you have severely discolored teeth; one treatment lasts up to a year, and results are immediate.
  • Talk to your dentist before starting any whitening treatment, especially if you have weak or thin enamel, cavities, or gum disease.

Other Whitening Products We Tested

We tested other products that didn’t make our top recommendations list. However, the products below were easy to use and provided decent results with minimal side effects:

Based on our experience, these products caused unpleasant side effects, lacked convenience, and/or weren’t worth the money:

  • Whitening Pens (caused burning sensations in the mouth; require frequent use) 
  • iSmile Teeth Whitening Kit (caused immediate sensitivity; lacked quality) 
  • Opalescence 15% Peroxide Kit (peroxide content is too high for at-home use) 
  • Crest 3D White Whitestrips (caused too much sensitivity to use consistently) 
  • Crest Whitening Emulsions (messy compared to whitening strips) 
  • Auraglow Prefilled Whitening Trays (trays are too small for teeth; not enough whitening gel per tray)

What to Look for in Teeth Whitening Products 

The primary factors to consider when buying whitening products are the ingredients, bleaching concentration, application time, and delivery method

Delivery Method 

At-home whitening products come in a few different delivery methods. Dr. Aggarwal recommends starting with whitening strips or kits without lights (like prefilled trays and gels). But it ultimately depends on your preference and dental health status. 

Prefilled Trays

These consist of potent whitening gels that are ‘prefilled’ into universal whitening trays. One of our testers prefers prefilled trays over any other whitening method for comfort and convenience. 

Dr. Aggarwal also recommends prefilled trays because the efficacy of LED lights hasn’t been well-studied. A whitening gel containing an active ingredient like peroxide will whiten your teeth.

Custom Trays 

These trays are similar to prefilled options, except they mold to the shape of your teeth and mouth.

You also have to manually fill the gel into the trays and put them in warm water before use. One of our testers said there isn’t enough room in many of these trays to fit the whitening gel. They can also be a hassle because they require more time.

LED Kits

Most of our recommendations in this article include LED mouthpieces because many brands include them now. Some research shows these lights help speed up the whitening process. Others show the opposite. 

The dental experts we interviewed also agreed that more studies are needed to determine their effectiveness. However, the mouthpieces do provide a more comfortable whitening experience. 

Strips

Whitening strips are the most popular at-home whitening products. You simply peel the strips from the packaging, dry your teeth, and place the strips on your teeth for 10 to 30 minutes. Strips peel off quickly and provide vibrant results with consistent use. They are typically cheaper and contain lower peroxide levels than other at-home products. 

Pens

Whitening pens are marketed as convenient ways to whiten teeth on the go. They don’t require lights or strips. All you do is ‘paint’ your teeth surfaces a couple of times a day. 

We don’t recommend pens in this article because our testers experienced more burning sensations with these products. They are also significantly messier than other options. We only recommend using pens for upkeep between whitening sessions. 

Toothpaste

Whitening toothpaste is also a good option for maintaining whitening results after using strips or trays. We recommend choosing a product with a low Relative Dentin Abrasivity (RDA) score.

Professional

Whitening products generally remove external stains from the outer surfaces of teeth. Bleaching products (in-office) penetrate deep within the tooth structure, changing the internal color of the tooth. 

Professional teeth bleaching systems are administered and overseen by dentists and their dental teams.

Application Time

Depending on the product, treatment times can fall between 10 and 60 minutes per session. Some recommend 7 to 14 days of consistent use, then repeating the process every few months. Others recommend 14+ days of treatment. 

Generally, the higher the peroxide level, the shorter the session. If you have sensitive teeth or thin enamel, check your progress after a few days of use. Take a break or try something different if you experience discomfort. 

Active Ingredients

According to experts interviewed in this article and our research, the following active ingredients are effective whitening agents:

  • Bleaching agents like perlite, hydrogen peroxide, and carbamide peroxide (dissolve stains via a chemical reaction).
  • Abrasives like hydrated silica and calcium carbonate (scrub away stains).
  • Peroxide alternatives like phthalimido peroxy caproic acid (PAP), which also causes a chemical reaction (oxidation) to dissolve and break down stains.

Ingredients to Avoid (Common Allergens/Irritants)

We asked licensed dentists to list common ingredients to avoid in whitening products, including potential allergens and irritants. Here’s what they recommend avoiding:

  • Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), which can cause an allergic reaction and cause peeling of the gums.6 
  • Propylene glycol and certain flavoring agents can also cause allergic reactions.7
  • Alcohol (which can be found in mouthwashes) can dry out the mouth significantly.8
  • Cocamidopropyl betaine, which is associated with cell death.9
  • Other toxins include desensitizers, anti-plaque agents, anti-inflammatory agents, anti-odor agents, preservatives, artificial colors, and essences.9

Brand Track Record

Another factor to consider when choosing a whitening product is the brand’s track record. How old is the company? How many reviews do they have? Where was the product made? 

Dr. Sidhu says to be careful with ‘overseas’ whitening products, as the whitening agents can contain contaminants or dangerous levels of peroxide and may not be approved by the FDA. 

Bleaching Concentration

According to Dr. Aggarwal, “the stronger the peroxide concentration, the more effective the whitening product. However, this also increases the likelihood of developing adverse effects.” The most common effects include tooth sensitivity and gum discomfort, which are usually harmless and short-lived. 

Methods with longer application times (whitening strips) will be more effective than those with decreased tooth contact (mouthwash and toothpaste). She recommends avoiding products with sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and alcohol, as these can have adverse side effects. 

At-home products containing higher levels of peroxide, which is common in whitening kits, should be used cautiously. Follow the instructions carefully. 

Also, people with weak or worn-down enamel and sensitive teeth should use products with lower peroxide levels. Talk with your dentist before starting a new whitening regimen. 

LED vs. No Light: Do LED Lights Actually Work?

The dentists we spoke to had mixed opinions on the effectiveness of LED lights in whitening. Research results are also conflicting. 

For example, one study reported a larger difference in bleaching with an LED light after the first session than without it.12 Other studies state that using an LED light made no difference with higher hydrogen peroxide concentrations.10

According to Dr. Zoumboukos, LED lights accelerate the bleaching product's reaction on the teeth. The LED light itself will not whiten teeth. 

Professional Whitening Lights vs. At-Home Lights

There are also key differences between using at-home LED whitening systems vs. in-office light-based ones, says Dr. Zoumboukos. Typically, office products differ in bleach concentration, the type of bleach, and the light system. 

Many in-office bleaching systems use higher concentrations of bleach, resulting in an immediate whitening effect. This is not the case with at-home products; results usually take longer to notice.  

Current independent research in support of LED at-home whitening systems is not widely available. More studies are required to determine these products' effectiveness and overall value. 

Is At-Home Teeth Whitening Safe?

At-home teeth whitening is generally considered safe if you follow the product instructions, don’t overuse it, and choose the right delivery method for your needs. For example, if you have thin enamel, you’ll likely benefit from ‘gentle’ whitening strips or a peroxide-free alternative (like PAP). 

“If you overuse the gel, it can cause decalcification of teeth leading to increased wear and cavity susceptibility,” says Dr. Sidhu.

ADA Seal of Acceptance

Choosing products with the ADA Seal of Acceptance will ensure you purchase a safe and effective product. Here’s a list of the accepted whitening products:

  • Crest 3D White Whitestrips
  • Crest 3D Whitestrips
  • Crest 3D Whitestrips Gentle
  • Burt’s Bees Whitening Toothpaste
  • Colgate Total SF Whitening Toothpaste
  • Crest Gum & Enamel Repair (Advanced Whitening) Toothpaste
  • Crest Gum Detoxify (Gentle Whitening) Toothpaste

An oral health product submitted to the ADA must include data from clinical and/or laboratory studies. These tests must demonstrate safety and efficacy according to category requirements developed by the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs.

“I always recommend products with the ADA Seal of Acceptance,” says Dr. Zoumboukos. “Currently, none of the at-home LED whitening kits have the ADA Seal of Acceptance. The Seal of Acceptance process takes time, and the products are thoroughly evaluated.” 

What Type of Whitening is Right for You? 

All of the dentists we spoke to said it’s important to discuss whitening with your dentist before starting at-home whitening or professional bleaching.

“There is a risk that your teeth or gums will become sensitive to the bleach solution,” according to Dr. Zoumboukos. “Teeth bleaching will not alter the color of your existing dental restorations, and discussing with your dentist possible outcomes before starting any treatment will help clarify possible outcomes.”

Frequently Asked Questions

All of the questions below are answers from the three dental professionals interviewed for this article.

How can you maintain whitening results?

Avoid coffee, tea, dark sauces, dark chocolate, acidic foods, and smoking, and use straws to drink dark liquids. Brush and floss to extend your teeth whitening to the highest levels for 72 hours after whitening.

What are the risks of overusing peroxide whitening products?

If you overuse the gel, it can cause decalcification of teeth, leading to increased wear and cavity susceptibility.

What are the primary differences between professional and at-home whitening?

The primary differences are the level of peroxide, cost, and depth of whitening. In-office bleaching provides immediate results that last 6 months to a year. This is due to the high peroxide content and intensive bleaching method.

However, professional whitening can cost a couple of hundred dollars per session, whereas most at-home treatments cost under $150.

Are LED whitening kits or whitening strips better?

The main benefit of LED whitening kits is that they often provide faster results than other at-home options. Cons: increased sensitivity and higher costs.

Pros of whitening strips: least expensive and least amount of sensitivity. Cons: weakest strength, meaning weakest results. Usually, only the front six teeth are treated.

What are the benefits of peroxide vs. ‘natural’ or ‘peroxide-free’ options?

Natural options such as baking soda may use abrasives to mechanically remove extrinsic stains.2 Depending on how abrasive these products are, they may cause more harm than peroxide. You can use the relative dentin abrasivity scale to determine how abrasive a substance is.

12 Sources Cited
Last updated on November 23, 2022
All NewMouth content is medically reviewed and fact-checked by a licensed dentist or orthodontist to ensure the information is factual, current, and relevant.

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only cite from current scientific research, such as scholarly articles, dentistry textbooks, government agencies, and medical journals. This also includes information provided by the American Dental Association (ADA), the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
  1. Bizhang, Mozhgan, et al. “Effectiveness of a New Non-Hydrogen Peroxide Bleaching Agent after Single Use - a Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Short-Term Study.” Journal of Applied Oral Science, 2017.
  2. Epple, Matthias, et al. “A Critical Review of Modern Concepts for Teeth Whitening.” Dentistry Journal, MDPI, 2019.
  3. Greenwall, Li Y. “Safety Issues of Tooth Whitening Using Peroxide-Based Materials.” British Dental Journal, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2013.
  4. Cvikl, B, et al. “Enamel Surface Changes After Exposure to Bleaching Gels Containing Carbamide Peroxide or Hydrogen Peroxide.” Allen Press, Allen Press, 2016.
  5. Pascolutti, Mauro, and Dileusa de Oliveira. “A Radical-Free Approach to Teeth Whitening.” Dentistry Journal, MDPI, 2021.
  6. AJ;, Kasi SR;Özcan M;Feilzer. “Side Effects of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate Applied in Toothpastes: A Scoping Review.” American Journal of Dentistry, U.S. National Library of Medicine.
  7. Zirwas, Matthew J, and Sarah Otto. “Toothpaste Allergy Diagnosis and Management.” The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, Matrix Medical Communications, 2010.
  8. Tartaglia, Gianluca M, et al. “Adverse Events Associated with Home Use of Mouthrinses: a Systematic Review.” Therapeutic Advances in Drug Safety, SAGE Publications, 2019.
  9. Tabatabaei, Masoumeh Hasani, et al. “Cytotoxicity of the Ingredients of Commonly Used Toothpastes and Mouthwashes on Human Gingival Fibroblasts.” Frontiers in Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, 2019.
  10. Baroudi, Kusai, and Nadia Aly Hassan. “The Effect of Light-Activation Sources on Tooth Bleaching.” Nigerian Medical Journal: Journal of the Nigeria Medical Association, Medknow Publications & Media Pvt Ltd, 2014.
  11. Torres, Carlos, et al. “Assessment of the Effectiveness of Light-Emitting Diode and Diode Laser Hybrid Light Sources to Intensify Dental Bleaching Treatment.” Taylor & Francis, 2011.
  12. Hahn, Petra, et al. “Efficacy of Tooth Bleaching with and without Light Activation and Its Effect on the Pulp Temperature: an in Vitro Study - Odontology.” SpringerLink, Springer Japan, 2012.
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