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We all want to experience whiter teeth for a brighter smile, and many of us will go to great lengths to get there. There are so many different whitening products on the market that it can be difficult to navigate and understand what works and what doesn’t.
One such popular trend in the teeth whitening industry is a teeth whitening pen. Do teeth whitening pens work, and are they good for your teeth? While this simple, portable solution might seem like it’s whitening your teeth, it’s really only best for short-term results or maintaining an already white and bright smile.
In this guide, we will discuss more specifics so you know just what you can expect from using a teeth whitening pen and understand just how they work overall.
1. What is a teeth whitening pen?
A teeth whitening pen is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. These convenient pens can be carried on your person, whether you have them in your car, purse, or pocket. Each pen is filled with a whitening formula (this could vary by the manufacturer) designed to whiten your teeth on the go.
Most pens work by twisting to release the serum, just as you might twist a writing pen to release ink. The serum inside the pen will coat your teeth, helping to cover and reduce dark spots. You simply brush the top of the pen across your tooth surface and let it do the work.
The unique thing about whitening pens is they typically do not require any brushing or rinsing as part of the process. You just brush it on and go.
If you look at the details of the pens, you will find that most of them tell you that they work best when paired with other whitening products or when used to touch up challenging stains on your teeth.
2. How do teeth whitening pens work?
You will find that not all teeth whitening pens are made the same. They can contain a variety of different ingredients. However, most of them will be similar in function. Teeth whitening pens typically contain either carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide to bleach your teeth and break up stains.
When you apply the whitening formula to your teeth using a pen, you may notice bubbling on the surface. That is a sign that the whitening is working, but there remains some question as to how long it works or how effective it is overall.
When you use the pen, it is meant for touch-ups or use in between other whitening processes. For example, if your teeth are prone to stains, you could use a teeth whitening pen after drinking things like coffee or soda that are more likely to leave stains behind.
Teeth whitening pens work best as a maintenance response than used primarily as a whitening treatment on their own. It can help prevent some of those “sticky” foods and drinks from sticking as much to your teeth, keeping your teeth bright.
3. Benefits of Teeth Whitening Pens
There are some great benefits to teeth whitening pens. If you’re looking for lasting and strong results, you will need to pair the teeth whitening pen with other whitening solutions. However, for quick results and on-the-go solutions, teeth whitening pens can be really helpful.
Check out these benefits of teeth whitening pens.
- Affordable solution. A teeth whitening pen is often affordable, and you can typically find them at your local drug store. If you want whitening capabilities that won’t cost a lot, this could be a good solution. It might also be good for upkeep if you have used other more expensive solutions.
- Simplicity. Using a teeth whitening pen is easy and convenient. You don’t need to let it sit, and you don’t need extra accessories or an appointment. You simply brush on the solution at your convenience and avoid food and drink for 20-30 minutes. Apply it whenever and wherever you please.
- Effective application. If you use a high-quality whitening pen, it can be effective for reducing stains, covering hard-to-handle stains, and providing maintenance between other techniques. It is effective as a short-term solution and quick fix.
- Gentle to use. Teeth whitening pens are gentle on your teeth for the most part. You will want to pay attention to active ingredients, but these typically will not cause added sensitivity to your teeth like some whitening solutions might.
4. Downsides to Using Teeth Whitening Pens
There are always downsides to be aware of with any product, and the same rings true of teeth whitening pens. While they do work effectively for short-term and spot use, their capabilities are limited.
Here are some potential downsides to using teeth whitening pens.
- The results are short-lived
- Saliva can easily break down the active ingredient
- It’s not a sustainable option for long-term results
- Teeth whitening pens may reduce your tooth enamel
- The formula or serum in the pens can sometimes cause gum irritation
- Teeth whitening pens might cause sensitivity
- Whitening might be inconsistent or uneven
5. Do Teeth Whitening Pens Really Work?
Essentially, teeth whitening pens really can work, but keep in mind that they are best when used as a quick fix or as a maintenance tool as opposed to the ultimate whitening solution. Most times, teeth whitening pens will need to be paired with other whitening processes to be effective.
6. Final Words
Teeth whitening pens certainly can have a time and place that they will work for you. We recommend that you pair this solution with some other process and rely on the pen for spot fixes and upkeep rather than your only whitening process.