Table of Contents
- Our Top Pick
- The Basics On How It Works
- General Use
- Health Warnings
- Some Perspective On Whitening
- Best Whitening Mouthwash Wrap Up
Are those pearly whites not quite as “pearly” as you’d like? Maybe they’re not as “white” as you’d like them to be either. I’ve suffered from gross, yellow looking teeth for a long time and know first hand that it’s not fun.
Whitening can be a lot of work though. Whitening strips and at-home gels can take anywhere from 20 minutes to 2 hours to be effective, and that’s every day! The benefits are awesome, no doubt, but finding the time every day to do that can be more than a challenge.
Bonus: Download our free whitening tips to give your smile a boost. Includes a comparison and explanation of whitening techniques using toothpaste, mouthwash, whitestrips and at-home gels and kits.
Few seem to know that mouthwash can help brighten their smile though. As it turns, it can! And there are tons of different possibilities.
That’s why we put together this guide – to learn more about whitening mouthwash and to see which one works best. We’ll walk you through the basics of how mouthwash can help whiten your teeth and then show you which products we think are the best.
Our Top Pick
Our top pick is Crest’s 3D Lux Glamorous White Mouthwash. Despite being one of the more ridiculously named products we came across, it does a great job of utilizing both fluoride and hydrogen peroxide to keep your teeth white and shiny. It’s also got the major benefit of being alcohol free, so you won’t have to concern yourself about the huge burn most mouthwashes have nor the common problems with dry mouth!
Check out the table below for the rest of our top picks!
The Basics On How It Works
So how does this stuff actually whiten your teeth? Well, there are three basic ways that your teeth will get whitened.
The first one is through using abrasives – you’ll mainly find this in a whitening toothpaste. The idea is that you’re rubbing rough stuff on your teeth to rub off the discoloration.
This obviously isn’t used in mouthwash (unless you’re gargling sand or something…) so we’ll focus on the other two. The main ways your teeth get whitened using a teeth whitening mouthwash are bleaching and protection. We’ve got the basics listed below.
The first way a whitening mouthwash will help to make your teeth whiter is by bleaching. This is the same idea that your dentist office uses when they stick that goup on your teeth.
The main whitening agent used to bleach teeth is hydrogen peroxide. The higher the concentration of hydrogen peroxide, the stronger the whitening agent. With great power comes great responsibility though and higher levels of hydrogen peroxide can start to be dangerous. Most of what you’ll find in take-home products is pretty weak compared to the stuff at the dentist’s office. That’s fine though, it still works well in lower concentrations.
Further Reading: Check out our full guide on the best mouthwash.
You’ll also find carbamide peroxide used as well. This will mix with water and turn into hydrogen peroxide, so it’s the same idea.
The idea behind these chemicals is that they literally bleach your teeth to make them whiter. The longer your teeth are exposed to these bleaching agents, the greater the effect. We’ll cover this more in depth later, but this is why it’s important to swish for the full recommended time (usually 60 seconds).
The second way a whitening mouthwash will help to protect your teeth is through simply protecting them from stains. This will happen by protecting your enamel and helping to strengthen it.
Chemicals such as sodium fluoride will help to minimize the wear on your enamel. This will give it time to rebuild and strengthen, thus help your teeth to become not only stronger, but whiter.
Other ways to protect and build up the enamel of your teeth include balancing the pH levels and protecting your teeth from acid. You’ll also find this will significantly help bad breath or halitosis issues as well. But that’s a different topic for a different time.
If you’re planning on picking up a whitening mouthwash, it’s important to keep a few basic ideas in mind when using it. Below we’ve listed the main concepts to remember on how to use a whitening mouthwash:
As we mentioned above, consistency is key. In order to see effective results, you should be using your whitening mouthwash at least twice a day. More than that is fine as long as you’re not experiencing any adverse health effects, such as sensitivity.
Forgetting here and there isn’t a big deal. However, if you’re regularly rinsing less than two times a day, you’ll likely see way worse results.
Make sure to read the directions on the bottle thoroughly before using. Most teeth whitening mouthwashes will recommend use for a full minute. Again, as long as you’re not seeing any negative health effects, it’s okay to go over that.
Some of you may find that getting through a full 60 seconds is pretty tough, particularly with an alcohol based mouthwash. That’s totally fine – just work your way up to it. Start at as long as you can go and then increase by one second every week. As you use the mouthwash more, your gums and oral tissue will become stronger. This will make it easier to get to that 60 second mark so you can make full effect of your whitening mouthwash.
Rinsing and Eating
A big part of using a teeth whitening mouthwash is to not rinse afterwards. The chemicals used to bleach and protect your teeth will continue working for up to a half hour afterwards. If you rinse, drink, brush or eat within that time you’ll see much worse results.
My basic plan is to brush my teeth and then use my whitening mouthwash right after I get up. Then I’ll go about the rest of my routine and by the time I’m done, my half hour is up and I can eat.
Whatever your routine, just make sure to let those chemicals take full effect.
This is a bit obvious, but we still feel compelled to say it. You’ll see the best results if you have a healthy oral health routine. This includes brushing twice a day (for a full two minutes), flossing and doing your best to avoid drinks and foods that stain.
Nobody’s perfect and keeping up your oral health can be tough at times. Regardless though, you’ll see your teeth get whiter much faster if you supplement your whitening mouthwash with careful attention to the rest of your mouth.
Whitening teeth can be incredibly satisfying. Seeing your teeth get shades whiter over the course of a month or two is awesome. It can also be a bit dangerous though.
First, make sure to continually see your dentist regularly. If you can, try to start your whitening effort within a month or two of your next dentist’s visit. This way you can get a full check up to make sure everything is going okay.
Next, make sure to watch your mouth closely. The most likely issues you’ll find are sensitivity and peeling gums. Peeling gums are usually associated more with whitening gels and not with teeth whitening mouthwashes, but it’s still good to watch out.
Sensitivity issues can often be caused by over use of bleaching agents. If you’ve got issues with sensitivity, stop use immediately. Use a fluoride based mouthwash and toothpaste to help build everything back up and then try again in a few weeks. You can always cut back a bit and you’ll still see effective results. Overdoing it can lead to some pretty nasty problems though, so make sure you’re careful and cautious.
Finally, many of these products are not kid friendly. You’ll find that most whitening mouthwashes list use for ages 12 and up. In general, we’d recommend a more kid friendly mouthwashes for your kids to use. If you do decide you want them to use a whitening mouthwash, make sure to supervise them closely.
Some Perspective On Whitening
Before we go any further we feel it’s important to note how relative whitening can be. Everybody is starting at a different spot, and it’s important to remember that. Someone who has excellent oral health will have a totally different experience than someone who has heavier staining on their teeth.
Keep this in mind as you start your quest for whiter teeth by using a whitening mouthwash. If you’ve got heavier staining, you’ll likely see progress much faster than someone who has less staining.
Many products will advertise a brighter smile within several days. This may very well happen to a number of customers, but others may not see results for several weeks.
Usually our rule of thumb is three months. If you don’t see progress after 12 weeks of consistent, daily and responsible use the product likely isn’t going to work for you. We’d encourage you to continue using up until that point to be able to make a full assessment.
Okay, so now that we’re done with all of the info, let’s get on to the product suggestions. We’ve scoured the world to find the best whitening mouthwashes out there and this is what we’ve come up with. At Oradyne, we try to find something that works for everyone. Below we’ve got six very different whitening mouthwash options. Whatever your goals and lifestyle choices, you should be able to find something that works for you.
#1 Pick: Crest 3D White Luxe Glamorous White Mouthwash
Out top pick for whitening mouthwashes is Crest’s hydrogen peroxide based mouthwash, the Crest 3D White Luxe Glamorous White Mouthwash. This is part of their flagship whitening line, the 3D White products. This line also includes their 3d White toothpaste and their Crest 3D White Strips.
This whitening mouthwash works similar to the Rembrandt Deeply White Mouthwash in that it bleaches and protects as well. The hydrogen peroxide will help to bleach your teeth and the fluoride will help to protect. The Crest 3D White mouthwash will also works to freshen your breath as well.
The big benefit to Crest 3D White Mouthwash is the fact that it’s alcohol free. If you’ve had issues with the burning sensation of alcohol based mouthwashes in the past, you’ll not have that issue here. It’s great for those with more sensitive skin who wish to whiten their teeth using a teeth whitening mouthwash.
Otherwise you’ll find the experience of this Crest whitening mouthwash pretty similar to anything else. It’s got the standard minty-fresh taste to it along with the standard hydrogen peroxide foaminess.
If you’re looking for an alcohol free whitening mouthwash, the Crest 3D White Mouthwash will do you well.
#2 Pick: Rembrandt Deeply White Mouthwash
Rembrandt Deeply White Mouthwash is a pretty excellent option as far as whitening mouthwashes go. It works with their famous one-two punch. First, it uses hydrogen peroxide to help bleach and whiten your teeth. Then it uses sodium fluoride to protect your teeth and build back your enamel. Both of these in conjunction work pretty well to whiten your teeth.
The other thing we like about Rembrandt is their more realistic expectations. They’re up front and honest that it may take up to 12 weeks to see the effects of their whitening mouthwash. Not that the others are lying per se, but it’s nice to see a company set the bar at a more realistic point.
You’ll notice the taste is pretty subtle with a hint of mint – pretty standard. The foaming action will be pretty intense, but any mouthwash with hydrogen peroxide will have that happen.
Rembrandt Deeply White Mouthwash is a very strong competitor for the best whitening mouthwash.
#3 Pick: Essential Oxygen Organic Mouthwash
The Essential Oxygen Organic Mouthwash kind of counts, because it’s technically a mouthwash/toothpaste combo. The idea here is that while you can use it as a regular whitening mouthwash and swish it around, you can also put some on your toothbrush and brush with it. Not that more options is a bad thing though.
The big reason why we put this option here is because it’s a much more natural option that the others listed. If you’re about ingredients such as alcohol, glycerin, sodium lauryl sulfate or fluoride then you’ll like this whitening mouthwash. It’s got none of those. It does include hydrogen peroxide though, so you’ll still get that teeth bleaching effect.
This whitening mouthwash is based around more natural ingredients. It’s main ingredients include:
- Purified water
- organic aloe vera
- food-grade hydrogen peroxide
- organic essential oils:
Essential oils and aloe vera have been major mainstays in the natural mouthwash market. Mixing those with hydrogen peroxide results in a fantastic but still natural whitening mouthwash.
#4 Pick: Colgate Optic White Mouthwash
The Colgate Optic White Mouthwash is one of the two biggest competitors to the Crest 3D White Mouthwash (the second is listed right below this). That’s not a bad thing though – competition drives down price and spurs innovation.
You’ll see a lot of similar stats on the Colgate Optic White Mouthwash as you do on the Crest 3D Mouthwash. Both use hydrogen peroxide to help bleach teeth. They both also use fluoride for protection and work to freshen breath.
The Colgate Optic White Mouthwash has a few not-so-awesome reports of intense burning, bleeding gums, massive amounts of pain, etc. I’m not sure where all this comes from. We had absolutely no issue using this whitening mouthwash and wouldn’t expect you to have any similar issues either.
If you’re not interested in getting the Crest or Listerine whitening mouthwash options, this Colgate’s Optic White Mouthwash should do you just fine. If you do happen to have any major issues, please let us know.
#5 Pick: Listerine Whitening Mouthwash
Rounding out the third of the trio is the Listerine Whitening Mouthwash. There are several different variations of the Listerine whitening mouthwash, so make sure you pay attention to which one you buy. The version that we’ve linked still uses hydrogen peroxide to help bleach teeth. Other versions, such as the Listerine Gentle Whitening Mouthwash doesn’t include hydrogen peroxide.
If you’re looking for a more effective teeth whitening mouthwash, we suggest you go with the standard version. If you’ve suffered with tooth sensitivity in the past, the gentle option should work well for you.
Aside from that, you’ll find the standard hydrogen peroxide and fluoride mix with the Listerine Whitening Mouthwash. Nothing original, but it works.
Vegan Option: Oral Essentials Teeth Whitening Mouthwash
For those of you who have chosen the vegan lifestyle, we present the Oral Essentials Whitening Mouthwash. This whitening mouthwash is completely cruelty free. It’s also free from hydrogen peroxide, baking soda and fluoride.
While we believe the best results for whitening will be obtained from using a mouthwash with at least one of those ingredients, we realize that’s not always a viable option.
The nice thing is that Oral Essentials has a 30 day, money back guarantee. If you find your teeth no whiter after the first 30 days of use, simply contact them and ask for a refund.
Best Whitening Mouthwash Wrap Up
So there we have it. A bit of education, a few help products. Hopefully this article will set you on the right path to getting your teeth white. If you have any product suggestions, please let us know. It’s difficult to look through all of the options out there. And as always, if you have any questions, comments or concerns, please let us know. Either drop a comment below or contact us.