What Is the Best Teeth Whitening Toothpaste? See Our Review

The Best Whitening Toothpaste in 2022: Guide and Review

Whitening your teeth at home has become much more accessible, with effective treatments such as strips, emulsions, and toothpaste available. Whitening toothpaste offers a convenient way to freshen your smile with every brush, but choosing the right one is essential, especially if you have sensitive teeth.

We’re reviewing eight of the best whitening toothpastes on the market to see how they work and if they’re worth a try.

 

Our Top Picks

Hundreds of whitening toothpastes are on the market today; here are the products we rate as the best.

 

Brand Award Star Rating
Colgate Optic White Toothpaste Best Whitening Toothpaste Overall
Crest 3D White Toothpaste Radiant Mint Best Runner-Up 4.5
HiSmile PAP+ Toothpaste Best Whitening Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth 4.5
Bite Toothpaste Bits Mint Charcoal Best Eco-Friendly Choice 4.5
Supersmile Professional Whitening Toothpaste Best Whitening Toothpaste for Gum Health
Arm & Hammer Advance White Extreme Whitening Toothpaste Best Whitening Toothpaste for Smokers 3.5
Tom’s of Maine Fluoride-Free Antiplaque & Whitening Toothpaste Best Fluoride-Free Whitening Toothpaste 3.5
Sensodyne Extra Whitening Toothpaste Best Whitening Toothpaste for Braces

 

Best Teeth Whitening Toothpastes 2022

What are the best teeth whitening toothpastes of 2022? Here we take a look at our top picks’ benefits and drawbacks.

 

1. Colgate Optic White Toothpaste – - Best Whitening Toothpaste Overall

Colgate Optic White is one of the best whitening toothpastes on the market, with 2% hydrogen peroxide, it has the power to remove old, deep stains. According to Colgate, you should be able to see results within three days of consistent use.

Furthermore, in a study comparing traditional toothpaste to whitening products, Optic White demonstrated a superior ability to prevent enamel erosion [1].

Customers describe Colgate Optic White as leaving their teeth feeling stronger and whiter. It is also an affordable option, with a listed price of $4.96 at Walmart and $5.49 at Walgreens.

Hydrogen peroxide might exacerbate sensitivity, so if you have sensitive teeth or gum you may want to consider a toothpaste with charcoal or disodium pyrophosphate.

Bottom Line:

Out of the best whitening toothpastes, time-honored fluoride toothpaste Colgate Optic White is our top pick with its safe level of peroxide and scientific evidence.

Pros

  • Contains a safe concentration of hydrogen peroxide
  • Laboratory-proven to reduce tooth enamel erosion
  • Proven to reduce coffee staining of resin composites
  • Mouthwash and overnight treatment versions are available

Cons

  • Contains two ingredients, calcium pyrophosphate and silica, which are known abrasives

2. Crest 3D White Toothpaste Radiant Mint – - Best Runner-Up

Crest 3D White contains disodium pyrophosphate as the key whitening agent. Pyrophosphates are anti-redeposition agents, meaning they prevent surface stains and tartar formation [2].

Similar to Colgate Optic White, Crest 3D White is effective in preventing tooth erosion. However, it contains carrageenan, a substance that can irritate the gastrointestinal lining in susceptible individuals [3].

Learn how to use Crest whitestrips, or see the best whitening strips, including Crest, here.

Bottom Line:

Crest offers a gentler path to whiter teeth than peroxide-containing products, but loses points with its carrageenan content.

Pros

  • Higher fluoride concentrations than Colgate Optic White (1500ppm)
  • Laboratory-proven to prevent enamel erosion
  • Non-abrasive active whitening ingredient

Cons

  • Contains carrageenan, which can irritate the gastrointestinal lining if you are sensitive

3. HiSmile PAP+ Toothpaste – - Best Whitening Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth

HiSmile PAP+ is ideal if you struggle with tooth sensitivity caused by thin enamel, as it uses PAP (Phthalimidoperoxycaproicacid) instead of peroxides or abrasives.

PAP+ has been shown to work as effectively as peroxide, without damaging the enamel. Furthermore, the toothpaste works to increase the microhardness of your teeth, with ingredients such as calcium hydroxyapatite [4].

Although it has positive customer reviews, the downside to HiSmile PAP+ is its price, at $25 per tube.

Bottom Line: 

HiSmile PAP+ does not cause enamel erosion thanks to its unique active ingredient, making it the best for sensitive teeth.

Pros

  • Phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid (PAP) acts as a non-abrasive, non-free radical generating whitener
  • Efficacy verified by laboratory research
  • Peroxide-free formulation makes it more suitable for highly sensitive teeth
  • No carrageenan, phthalates, or triclosan

Cons

  • Expensive

4. Bite Toothpaste Bits Mint Charcoal – - Best Eco-Friendly Choice

Bite Toothpaste Bits is one of the best natural whitening toothpaste brands, without even a petrochemical plastic container in sight. Instead, your subscription includes a refillable glass jar.

It’s easy to use, just bite on a Bit and brush your teeth as normal.

Bite uses the whitening power of activated charcoal, a cleanser that gives you a whiter smile by latching onto substances that cause surface stains. To remineralize your teeth, Bite relies on hydroxyapatite, which works to prevent tooth decay [5].

Bottom Line:

Bite Toothpaste Bits offers a unique type of charcoal toothpaste that can give you healthy teeth without irritation.

Pros

  • Plastic-free; is sold in a glass bottle
  • Whitening effects of charcoal cleanses teeth
  • A natural fluoride-free alternative

Cons

  • May be abrasive for those with low tooth enamel

5. Supersmile Professional Whitening Toothpaste – - Best Whitening Toothpaste for Gum Health

Supersmile Professional focuses on using gentler, non-abrasive ingredients that won’t harm your gums. The proprietary ingredient Calprox is Supersmile’s main active ingredient, which removes surface stains without irritating your gums.

When used twice daily, the toothpaste provides 24-hour protection against stains, helping to keep your smile white. The only downside is the price, which is $25 per tube.

Bottom Line: 

Supersmile Professional may be a gentle path to a brighter smile, but with consistent use, you can achieve whiter teeth without compromising your gum health.

Pros

  • Free from abrasive silica, as well as triclosan and sulfates, which can be irritating
  • Gentle ingredients such as Calprox and baking soda
  • Subscription options so you never run out

Cons

  • Not as affordable as other options

6. Arm & Hammer Advance White Extreme Whitening Toothpaste – - Best Whitening Toothpaste for Smokers

Arm & Hammer Advance White Extreme combines two powerful whitening ingredients, baking soda, and peroxide, to remove even the toughest stains.

It’s one of the more affordable options on the market, with a twin-pack costing less than $6. Additionally, reviewers describe being left with fresher breath all day long. Although, some users have complained of a slightly salty taste due to the baking soda. 

Bottom Line: 

Arm & Hammer is a powerful whitening toothpaste that works effectively at removing and preventing stains.

Pros

  • Sodium carbonate peroxide reduces the spread of bleaching agents into the gums
  • Tetrasodium pyrophosphate for tartar control
  • Baking soda as a gentle antibacterial

Cons

  • Some users complain of salty taste

7. Tom's of Maine Fluoride-Free Antiplaque & Whitening Toothpaste – - Best Fluoride-Free Whitening Toothpaste

Tom’s of Maine is another fluoride-free alternative on our list. The active ingredient for protecting the enamel is calcium carbonate, which may even prevent erosion from stomach acid [6]. Other ingredients such as xylitol and zinc citrate, work effectively to remove plaque and harmful bacteria, leaving you with a fresh feel after every use.

The toothpaste is free of artificial dyes, preservatives, artificial sweeteners, and flavorings. However, it does contain carrageenan, which can irritate the gastrointestinal lining in some individuals.

Bottom Line: 

Tom’s of Maine is another worthwhile alternative if you are concerned about the potential effects of fluoride, but some ingredients may be irritating or abrasive.

Pros

  • Calcium carbonate is an effective alternative for protecting enamel
  • Zinc citrate and peppermint oil to freshen breath
  • Fluoride-free formulation

Cons

  • Contains carrageenan.

8. Sensodyne Extra Whitening Toothpaste – - Best Whitening Toothpaste for Braces

Sensodyne Extra Whitening is excellent for braces and individuals with sensitive teeth, as it’s free from peroxides which can exacerbate sensitivity. Reviewers describe it as providing a “just from the dentist” mouthfeel, despite lifestyle factors such as heavy coffee drinking.

The silica in the toothpaste helps to remove stubborn stains that are common when wearing braces. Furthermore, the paste works effectively at preventing new stains from sticking to the surface of your teeth.

Bottom Line:

Sensodyne’s inclusion of potassium nitrate may make it a helpful option if you have thin enamel or a history of dental trauma, including the use of adhesive braces.

Pros

  • Potassium nitrate may soothe hypersensitivity of the dentine
  • Sweet taste from glycerin and sweeteners
  • Formulated to reduce irritation and excessive concentration of actives

Cons

  • Abrasive silica

 

Does Whitening Toothpaste Work?

According to research, whitening toothpaste can be highly effective in whitening your teeth by removing surface stains. However, efficacy depends on factors such as the condition of your teeth and ingredients.

 

Common Ingredients

Common ingredients of whitening toothpastes include:

  • Fluoride, a naturally-occurring mineral. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends fluoride toothpastes, as the mineral can bind with calcium in the enamel to form calcium fluorapatite [7]. This is more resistant to acid erosion, and may even reverse the early decay process.
  • Hydrogen peroxide, also formulated as carbamide peroxide, for removing surface stains.
  • Calcium carbonate
  • Sodium bicarbonate, also known as baking soda.
  • Sweeteners such as saccharine and sugar alcohols
  • Hydrated silica
  • Solvents such as propylene glycol (PEG)
  • Flavoring, often mint
  • Tetrasodium pyrophosphate assists in controlling tartar.

 

How Long Does It Take for Whitening Toothpaste to Work?

How long it takes for whitening products to work depends on the active ingredients. A study comparing toothpastes with hydrogen peroxide, blue covarine, black charcoal, and abrasive microbeads found that peroxide toothpaste and blue covarine can significantly increase whiteness after just one use. However, these were only averages [8].

After four weeks of use, all toothpastes significantly improved whiteness over the control (a regular toothpaste). You can therefore expect great improvement within four weeks, but you may see results sooner.

 

What To Look For in Whitening Toothpaste

Finding the right toothpaste is essential, here are four things to consider:

4 things to consider before choosing a toothpaste

  • Ingredients
  • Flavor
  • Dentist-approval
  • Customer reviews

 

Ingredients

Toothpaste ingredients must be both safe and effective:

  • Hydrogen and carbamide peroxide.
  • Activated charcoal
  • Disodium pyrophosphate
  • PAP+
  • Hydroxyapatite
  • Calcium carbonate
  • Sodium carbonate peroxide

You must avoid anything with chlorine dioxide. Chlorine dioxide is a toxic bleaching agent that can cause throat irritation when inhaled, potentially leading to chronic bronchitis or worsening any respiratory issues you may already have [9].

 

Flavor

The flavor of your toothpaste can make or break whether you actually use it. Perhaps you prefer a gentle or strong mint, or something else entirely such as lavender or spicier options like cinnamon.

 

Dentist-Approval

Another key factor in choosing between whitening toothpastes is whether dentists approve of the product. If you cannot ask your own dentist, seek out reviews online from verified professionals. You can also check if the toothpaste is accepted by the ADA.

 

Customer Reviews

Finally, customer reviews should form part of your decision. Lab studies, research on individual ingredients, and company claims can only go so far. Reviews from real users can help you figure out how quickly you can expect results and whether the toothpaste is worth a try.

 

Is Whitening Toothpaste Safe for Your Teeth?

Toothpaste indicated for teeth whitening are generally safe, as long as they do not contain excessive peroxide. Those containing 6% of hydrogen or a substantial level of carbamide peroxide may irritate your mouth, cause teeth hypersensitivity, erode enamel and reduce hardness [4].

Other ingredients, such as abrasive agents, can contribute to erosion too. Sodium carbonate, however, does not have the same irritant effect on the gums as it releases less peroxide [10].

 

Potential Side Effects

Some ingredients that whiten teeth can have unwanted effects. Abrasives and higher concentrations of peroxide may wear down tooth enamel. The oxidative stress generated by peroxide can irritate the gums and inner cheeks too.

 

Benefits of Whitening Toothpaste

Whitening toothpaste and home whitening kits allow you to effectively camouflage or remove surface stains at home. They are cheaper than professional whitening treatments and more accessible. Some whitening toothpaste has additional remineralizing effects, and many are formulated for sensitive teeth and gums that cannot tolerate peroxide.

Whitening pens may provide you with added convenience. Read on to learn more about the best whitening pen here.

 

Disadvantages

Whitening toothpaste may take longer to remove surface stains compared to other treatments, such as whitening strips or pens. Professional treatments also prevent peroxide from irritating your gums and mouth, while toothpaste does not have that ability.

 

FAQ

What are the most important things to know when deciding between whitening toothpastes?

 

Can Yellow Teeth Become White?

What Is the Most Effective Teeth Whitening Product?

Do Any Teeth Whitening Toothpastes Work?

Is LED Teeth Whitening Safe?

Which Toothpaste Is the Best for Whitening?

 

Conclusion

Out of the best teeth whitening products, time-honored Colgate comes out on top with its Optic White formula. However, the effects of peroxide may be too irritating or erosive for you. In this case, Crest 3D White or HiSmile might be a better choice. If you want to avoid fluoride and reduce waste, we recommend Bite Toothpaste Bits.

 

References:

  1. Simões, Ana Clara Correa Duarte et al. “Do commercial whitening dentifrices increase enamel erosive tooth wear?.” Journal of applied oral science : revista FOB vol. 28 e20190163. 27 Mar. 2020, doi:10.1590/1678-7757-2019-0163
  2. Liu, Hongchun, and Jiazhen Tu. “Reduction of extrinsic tooth stain by a toothpaste containing 10% high cleaning silica, 0.5% sodium phytate and 0.5% sodium pyrophosphate: an 8-week randomised clinical trial.” BMC oral health vol. 21,1 113. 11 Mar. 2021, doi:10.1186/s12903-021-01484-5
  3. Tobacman, J K. “Review of harmful gastrointestinal effects of carrageenan in animal experiments.” Environmental health perspectives vol. 109,10 (2001): 983-94. doi:10.1289/ehp.01109983
  4. Pascolutti, Mauro, and Dileusa de Oliveira. “A Radical-Free Approach to Teeth Whitening.” Dentistry journal vol. 9,12 148. 9 Dec. 2021, doi:10.3390/dj9120148
  5. Bossù, Maurizio et al. “Enamel remineralization and repair results of Biomimetic Hydroxyapatite toothpaste on deciduous teeth: an effective option to fluoride toothpaste.” Journal of nanobiotechnology vol. 17,1 17. 25 Jan. 2019, doi:10.1186/s12951-019-0454-6
  6. Scandiffio, Priscila et al. “Anti-erosive effect of calcium carbonate suspensions.” Journal of clinical and experimental dentistry vol. 10,8 e776-e780. 1 Aug. 2018, doi:10.4317/jced.54994
  7. UCSB Science Line, http://scienceline.ucsb.edu/getkey.php?key=3252.
  8. Vaz, Vanessa Torraca Peraro et al. “Whitening toothpaste containing activated charcoal, blue covarine, hydrogen peroxide or microbeads: which one is the most effective?.” Journal of applied oral science : revista FOB vol. 27 e20180051. 14 Jan. 2019, doi:10.1590/1678-7757-2018-0051
  9. National Center for Biotechnology Information. "PubChem Compound Summary for CID 24870, Chlorine dioxide" PubChem, https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/Chlorine-dioxide. Accessed 16 January, 2022.
  10. Zoya, A et al. “Sodium percarbonate as a novel intracoronal bleaching agent: assessment of the associated risk of cervical root resorption.” International endodontic journal vol. 52,5 (2019): 701-708. doi:10.1111/iej.13035

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.