There are so many different teeth whitening options – how do I know what’s right for me?

Ask Smilie’s Dentist,
Dr. Tankard

Dear Dr. Tankard, there are so many different teeth whitening options – how do I know what’s right for me? – Bec J

Dear Bec, great question: The good news is there is an enormous range of teeth whitening products on the market to choose from; whitening strips, whitening kits, or you can have professional teeth whitening done by a dentist.

With so many different options available, it can be difficult to decide what’s right for you and your budget.

As a dentist, with over 15 years’, experience, I’ve had many of my own patients ask the same question, so let me break down a couple of whitening solutions that are available, so you can make an informed decision that’s right for you.

In-chair whitening with your dentist

In-chair whitening is a treatment that uses an activated bleaching agent and high intensity light to lift stains or discolouration off the tooth’s enamel. It’s a simple, non-invasive procedure that usually takes between 45 minutes to 1 ½ hours.


Pro’s of in-chair whitening

  • In-chair whitening releases high levels of hydrogen peroxide, therefore the results are instant and visible, after the first treatment
  • The treatment is performed by a registered dental professional, in a controlled and safe environment
  • A convenient, quick solution (particularly for time-poor people)

Con’s of in-chair whitening

  • It’s an expensive option, with prices ranging from $500 to $1200, compared to at-home options
  • The high-level, active agent can cause sensitivity, both during and after treatment
  • The process isn’t permanent, with the effects lasting between 12 and 24 months
  • Not recommended for those with sensitive teeth

Teeth whitening strips

Whitening strips contain a thin layer of hydrogen peroxide or other active ingredients, adhered to a plastic strip. The whitening strips are applied to the teeth and work to bleach surface stains.

Pro’s of whitening strips

  • Affordable option with pricing starting from as little as $20
  • Easily available, from your pharmacy, supermarket or online
  • Low-levels of the active agent make it ideal for those with tooth and gum sensitivity

Cons of whitening strips

  • Much slower process, it may take longer to see results
  • Does not work as effectively as other methods such as Smilie home whitening
  • One size doesn’t always fit all – the strip may not cover the entire surface, meaning you may get an uneven result
  • The results are not long lasting

Charcoal toothpaste

Activated charcoal is a form of carbon that’s been treated to make the surface of its particles porous. A popular choice due to the rise of charcoal products readily available online.

Pro’s of activated charcoal teeth whitening

  • Affordable option, with pricing starting from as little as $9
  • Loads of different brands available from stores, pharmacies and online
  • Can be effective for lifting surface stains

Cons of charcoal toothpaste

  • Be prepared - it’s messy!
  • It’s not suitable for those with fillings or underlying dental problems as the charcoal particles can get caught in the gums, causing irritation
  • The active ingredient isn't in contact with the tooth surface for enough time to have a meaningful whitening effect
  • Abrasive which can cause loss of tooth structure
  • Does not work on intrinsic stains
  • Not very effective

At-home Teeth Whitening Kits

There are dozens of at-home teeth whitening solutions on the market. The Smilie Teeth Whitening Kit comes with dual-light LED technology, dental-grade formula and 3 x gel pens for precise application.

Pro’s of teeth whitening kits

  • At-home teeth whitening kits are a convenient option for those who are wanting to achieve fast results, from the comfort of your own home
  • Safe, simple and effective to use, with results after the first treatment
  • The Smilie kit is developed by a Dentist, so you can feel assured knowing you’re getting dentist-quality results, at home
  • You have control over how white you want your teeth
  • Easy to touch up to maintain your white smile

Con’s of Teeth Whitening

  • The quality of a kit will vary depending on the brand, so check reviews to ensure you get the best teeth whitening kit available, this is why we have developed Smilie which is effective and easy to use

About smilie

Smilie is an Australian-owned business, backed by Doctor Daniel Tankard (member of the Australian Dental Association), who has over 15 years’ experience in the dental industry.

Smilie is the combination of research and testing to ensure we deliver the very latest in advanced at-home teeth whitening technology that is effective, easy and affordable.