From Fresh Breath to White Teeth, Here’s How to Maximize Your Smile

Including the perfect lip colour.

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woman drinking wine with a smile and white teeth

How to whiten your teeth

Whether your weakness is a steaming cup of drip coffee or a goblet of robust Bordeaux, essential adulting beverages aren’t kidding around when it comes to leaving their mark on your smile. You don’t have to go without either, just step up your game when it comes to your pearly whites.

Truth: there are lots of reasons to stay committed to twice-daily brushing and flossing. Eyes are the windows to the soul, but the mouth gives insight into overall health. “The bacteria that is found in the mouth travels through the bloodstream and has been linked to, and can be a contributing factor to, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, adverse pregnancy outcomes and Alzheimer’s disease to name a few,” says Irene Iancu, a Toronto-based dental health professional. If the goal of achieving a dazzling smile takes the lead on the road to staying in tip-top shape, so be it!

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Oral-B Genius toothbrush

Go electric

Start by investing in an electric toothbrush. “Research has been in favour of power versus manual [toothbrushes] for decades,” says Iancu, who sees positive effects firsthand. “Aside from the decrease of inflammation and gingivitis, I see noticeable changes in the reduction of surface stains from extrinsic factors like coffee, tea, wine and dark juices.” (Seeing red? Here are 6 reasons why your gums are bleeding.)

Pretty and powerful — this interactive beauty is equipped to protect gums while tracking neglected zones. Oral-B Genius Pro 9600 ($290) in Orchid Purple, available exclusively at shoppersdrugmart.ca. Additional colours available at amazon.ca (Black) and walmart.ca (Sakura Pink).

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crest whitestrips

Next-level at-home whitening

Free of cavities and have no dental pain? Then you’re an ideal candidate for an at-home whitening kit. “I love that it is completely controlled by you, and the applications are easy to use and relatively gentle on the teeth,” says Iancu. She also recommends getting a dental checkup and cleaning beforehand. “By making sure there is limited plaque and tartar, you are ensuring the active ingredients are in contact with the enamel, therefore having an easier time reaching your teeth.”

Blue LED light technology targets yellow stains for next-level brightening. Crest 3D White Whitestrips with Light, $120 at mass market retailers

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lip scrub

Smooth lips

With a radiant smile in play, your lips deserve equal attention. Get a jump on chapped lips season. Have a gentle exfoliator on standby to whisk away inevitable flakes, and stock up on balm to create a protective barrier.

Blended with organic goodies (sugar and coconut oil) to buff away dry skin. Henné Organics Nordic Berries Lip Exfoliator, $31 at shoppersdrugmart.ca/beauty

A leave-on gel that gently exfoliates while nourishing. Fresh Sugar Lip Wonder Drops Advanced Therapy, $32 at sephora.ca

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lipstick for a whiter smile

Pick a complementary lip colour

Sporting a bright lipstick remains the surefire way to dress up a smile. Vibrant pink is the go-to of Christy Coleman, chief artistic officer for Beautycounter. “It enhances a person’s natural lip colour. Unlike red, it’s a much softer option and thus more forgiving,” she says, “It’s very cheery, and you can blot it out to create a stain effect as well.”

What does your lipstick shape reveal about you? Find out with our quiz.

Protects lips with moisturizing oils, green tea powder and vanilla. Winky Lux Matcha Balm, $18 at shoppersdrugmart.ca/beauty

Delivers universally flattering, long-lasting colour with a clean beauty POV. Beautycounter Color Intense Lipstick in Garden Party, $42 at beautycounter.com

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mouthwash

Serious refreshment

And don’t forget the final step: fresh breath.

Refreshing and portable. Just add a sip of water. Lush Mouthwash Tabs in Crème de Menthe, $10 at lush.ca

Don't miss these 7 things your mouth is trying to tell you.

Originally Published in Best Health Canada