The seemingly simple process of whitening your teeth is rarely ever easy. Brightening kits don't always work, and they're tedious beyond belief. Further, dental insurance doesn't cover cosmetic services like professional whitening, and at-home kits that promise quick results require wearing uncomfortable mouthpieces and applying unsavory gels and serums. (Try doing literally anything else with a massive mouthpiece in!)
We believe the best way to make whitening a part of your routine — in a way you'll remember to do it, too — is to buy a whitening toothpaste. Options are aplenty nowadays, and we've done the work of narrowing the field for you. These are the 10 best whitening toothpastes.
Best Overall Whitening Toothpaste: Colgate Optic White Renewal Toothpaste
A patented formula comprising 3 percent hydrogen peroxide lends Colgate's Optic White toothpaste its whitening powers. In four weeks, the brand states, you'll see a near-complete reversal of up to a decade's (give or take, I guess) worth of stains. For those prone to mouth sores, perhaps steer clear; Colgate says SLS within can exacerbate such issues.
Best Upgrade Whitening Toothpaste: Native Wild Mint Whitening Toothpaste
You know Native? The ones you see selling $10 dollar deodorants? Yeah, they make $10 dollar toothpaste, too. (It's good stuff, I swear!) Available with or without fluoride, their whitening iteration can be used daily to prevent cavities, restore enamel and, over time, lift stains.
Best Affordable Whitening Toothpaste: Schmidt's Wondermint Activated Charcoal Toothpaste
Toothpastes with activated charcoal added are a dime a dozen, but Schmidt's all-natural option tastes better than most, courtesy of a blend of infused botanicals: goji and pomegranate extracts and organic aloe leaf juice.
Supersmile Professional Teeth Whitening Paste
Sure, spending $75 on some toothpaste sounds insane, right? Well, consider the cost of whitening services at the dentist — which insurances rarely cover. Supersmile's professional-grade polishing system promises instant results of up to six shades lighter, and applying the paste and accelerator proves as simple as mixing both on your toothbrush and cleaning twice daily.
Hello Naturally Whitening Toothpaste
Fluoride and farm-grown mint form the basis of Hello's bad-breath-battling whitening toothpaste. Sugar and artificial sweetener-free, it's the tea tree oil that offers the fresh-out-of-the-dentist tingle.
Dr. Sheffield's Extra-Whitening Toothpaste
Dr. Sheffield's makes a strange assortment of flavored options for kids — strawberry banana, mixed berry, chocolate — and a line of fluoride-free extra-whitening pastes, too. The brand's named after a real-life Dr. Sheffield, who's credited, at least in some capacity, with inventing an alternative to tooth-cleaning powders.
Crest Charcoal 3D White Toothpaste
Mmmm, activated charcoal. Buzz words like "3D white." All joking aside, Crest's most popular whitening toothpaste lifts surface stains and remineralizes weakened enamel.
Snow Morning Frost Whitening Toothpaste
Snow's Morning Frost flavored toothpaste — think more peppermint than mint julep — doesn't foam like most options but rather remains somewhat slick and gel-like the whole time. That might not be for everyone, but it works for what's intended to do.
Sensodyne Gentle Whitening Toothpaste
Do your sensitive teeth deter you from trying out whitening products? Sensodyne offers a Gentle Whitening option that addresses damage done by fruit, soda and wine acids — the primary culprits behind stains and heightened sensitivity.
Davids Natural Whitening Toothpaste
Davids all-natural peppermint option is SLS-, fluoride- and sulfate-free and ultra-smooth. Plus, it comes with a tiny key roller for easy squeezing, too.