13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (2024)

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (1)

Teeth whitening kits can be a little hit and miss. You either find one that works a treat but leaves your teeth feeling super-sensitive, or fail to notice a difference at all — and that's before you've even considered the sometimes harmful ingredients found in a handful of unregulated buys, the consistency they often require and the sometimes eye-wateringly expensive price tags.

In our quest for whiter, brighter teeth, we were able to separate the wheat from the chaff — here's a quick guide to the at-home teeth whitening products that actually make a difference.

Do At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits Work?

The best option for whitening is via the dentist's chair. However, if that's not an option, cosmetic dentist Dr Nina Bal advises: 'Bear in mind that over the counter kits may not have a high enough percentage of the whitening gel to make a professional level result,' so don't expect miracles! She adds that you shouldn't ever try brushing with 'natural remedies' such as bicarbonate soda as it is too abrasive on the enamel.

Much like anything where you want to see a noticeable change, discipline and consistency are key. For the best results, carefully follow the brand's instructions, finish the entire course or amount of product provided, and use it as often as recommended.

The kits should also be used alongside a good dental hygiene routine. That means brushing twice a day and flossing, regular dentist appointments, and avoiding drinks such as coffee or red wine that can stain teeth (or at least drinking them through a reusable straw, if cutting them out isn't an option).

How We Test

In the ELLE Lab, asked 318 testers to try a range of top-notch whitening kits to see which ones really delivered results. We took pictures of their teeth using our VISIA complexion analyser before and after using each product and then used a whiteness scale to determine any differences in shade. Our panel also assessed the whitening products at home, noting how easy each one was to use, how long it took, its overall effectiveness, and whether there was any sensitivity issues.

The ELLE editors have also selected their favourite kits, so you're sure to find your perfect match.

1

Best teeth whitening kit

Billion Dollar Smile Cosmetics USB LED Teeth Whitening Kit

1

Best teeth whitening kit

Billion Dollar Smile Cosmetics USB LED Teeth Whitening Kit

Our winning kit can be powered by your laptop, or even your phone, so you can whiten your teeth any time or place – just be prepared for the looks.

Simple to get to grips with, our testers were pleased to see results after just four days. The handy LED light turns itself off after the 16-minute treatment time is up too, so you don’t accidentally overdo it and end up looking like Ross from Friends. Could whitening your teeth be any easier?

Key specifications

Treatment time16 minutes
Treatment duration6 days
FormatLED light and mouth piece

2

Best professional teeth whitening kit

Spotlight Oral Care Teeth Whitening System

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (8)

2

Best professional teeth whitening kit

Spotlight Oral Care Teeth Whitening System

Designed by the pros, this kit claims to tackle the reddest of wine stains. Its hero ingredient is hydrogen peroxide, the OG for penetrating the top layer of your enamel.

Did it work? Testers were pleased to report it did, with the average person seeing a difference in their smile in just eight days. It didn’t spark any painful sensitivity and was commended for how mess-free it was to use compared to other kits.

Key specifications

Treatment time1 hour
Treatment duration14 days
FormatStrips

3

Best portable teeth whitening method

Moon Kendall Jenner Teeth Whitening Pen

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (9)

3

Best portable teeth whitening method

Moon Kendall Jenner Teeth Whitening Pen

If you want a smile that looks as expensive as Kendall Jenner’s, this will give you whiter teeth in a matter of clicks – literally. The brush applicator is a handbag must-have for brightening your pearly whites, while the vegan vanilla-mint flavour made the whole process more enjoyable.

Some found the 30-second wait time a bit too long to keep your mouth open for, but half saw more dazzling teeth by the end of the trial.

Key specifications

Treatment time10-30 minutes
Treatment durationInstant
FormatPen

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4

Best teeth whitening kit for travel

Mr. Blanc Teeth Whitening Strips

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (10)

4

Best teeth whitening kit for travel

Mr. Blanc Teeth Whitening Strips

Now 64% Off

A perfect travel companion, this kit individually wraps each set of strips, so you can save on mess while you’re out and about.

The peroxide-free formula didn’t cause sensitivity for the majority. Half noticed a visibly whiter smile too, with one raving about how 'comfortable, quick and easy to use' this portable kit was.

Key specifications

Treatment time30 minutes
Treatment duration14 days
FormatStrips

5

Best teeth whitening kit for stain removal

Boots Expert Teeth Whitening Kit with Blue Light Activation

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (11)

5

Best teeth whitening kit for stain removal

Boots Expert Teeth Whitening Kit with Blue Light Activation

Now 43% Off

This kit comes with the bold claim of leaving your teeth 10 shades whiter in just one week, so safe to say, we were intrigued. The majority of our testers found it helped eradicate stubborn stains, leaving most with a brighter, red carpet-worthy smile.

However, our panel found it a bit fiddly to use, and said it could have done with clearer instructions. But it didn’t cause any sensitivity, with one tester impressed with how comfortable the mouth tray was to wear.

Key specifications

Treatment time15-20 minutes
Treatment duration7 days
FormatLED light and mouth piece

ELLE Editors' Picks

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (12)

Not found your favourite yet? Take a look at the kits the ELLE editors recommend...

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6

Smile Time Teeth Whitening Pen - £18.99

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (13)

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Smile Time's portable teeth whitening pen is the answer to our coffee, wine and tea-stained teeth woes. No longer will you be caught red (wine) handed when someone whips out the camera mid-Pinot Noir, simply brush this gel formula on before any photo ops and wave goodbye to unwanted stains cropping up in your tagged photos.

7

Colgate Max White Ultimate Whitening Toothpaste - £11.99

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Like the idea of getting whiter teeth but can't be bothered with the faff? Adding no extra time to your morning and night-time routines, this whitening toothpaste contains hydrogen peroxide (the ingredient used by dentists when whitening teeth) to gradually lift stains from your gnashers.

8

L.A. Pacific 4-in-1 Enzyme Whitening Toothpaste - £4.46

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (15)

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If anyone knows how to do a dazzling white smile, it's those LA folk. This formula is a world first thanks to its inclusion of a whitening enzyme which turns the sugars in your mouth into natural hydrogen peroxide. Clever.

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9

Snow Teeth Whitening Kit All-In-One - £147

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For those that want to experience the closest thing to dentist-level results at home, this comprehensive whitening kit does the trick. Simply apply the serum to your teeth with the brush, pop in the LED mouth guard and chill for 9 minutes while it works its whitening magic. No scary dentist chair required.

10

Pro Teeth Whitening Co. Activated Charcoal Teeth Whitening Powder - £9.45

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (17)

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Brushing your teeth with powder takes a bit of getting used to. But do persevere, as the results can be brilliant. Harnessing the natural whitening ingredient of charcoal, this gently removes stains over time. A great option for those with sensitive teeth or gums.

11

Wisdom Intense White Charcoal Whitening Strips - £17.99

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In a hurry to get those gnashers pearly white? These strips claim to whiten in just a few days, with the charcoal helping to speed the process. They're quite strong, so not recommended for continuous use, but are fab for whitening your smile before a big event.

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12

Curaprox Black Is White Charcoal Whitening Toothpaste - £19.84

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Not only for detox face masks, Curaprox's whitening toothpaste also harnesses the purifying properties of charcoal to keep stains from settling. Even though the texture is slightly gritty, it's definitely not gag-worthy like some charcoal-infused products. Brush for two minutes, rinse your mouth out thoroughly, et voila.

13

BlanX White Shock Treatment + LED Bite - £10.67

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (20)

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A pea-sized amount of the BlanX treatment in place of your regular toothpaste is capable of blurring yellow stains into oblivion, all without subjecting your teeth to any abrasive ingredients which so often sensitise – ouch. Using the LED might seem like a bit of a faff when all you want to do is fall into bed at the end of the day, but you only need a minute each time; the key is consistency.

13 At-Home Teeth Whitening Kits That Actually Work (2024)

FAQs

Can a 13 year old use a teeth whitening kit? ›

The Right Age To Whiten

Most dentists agree that teeth whitening should be done no earlier than age 14-16. Many pre-teens do not have all of their permanent teeth yet, so it's best not to undergo teeth whitening until all adult teeth are present, and there are no longer any baby teeth in your child's mouth.

Do teeth whitening kits at home work? ›

So, yes, they are as effective. The active ingredient in the over-the-counter whitening kits that you can buy is one of the two active ingredients that we talked about. And it's the same ingredient that we use in a dental office when we're doing a professional cleaning.

What teeth whitening products actually work? ›

Selected. Our top picks
  • Best teeth whitening strips. Crest 3D Whitestrips Classic Vivid. ...
  • Best whitening toothpaste. Nu Skin AP 24 Toothpaste. ...
  • Best LED teeth whitening kit. Colgate Optic White ComfortFit LED Whitening. ...
  • Best teeth whitening mouthwash. ACT Whitening + Anticavity Fluoride Mouthrinse. ...
  • Best teeth whitening pen.
Apr 4, 2024

What actually whitens teeth at home? ›

Hydrogen Peroxide

It's the bleaching agent found in most home whitening kits. It actually changes a tooth's color. One study found that painting an over-the-counter gel with 6% hydrogen peroxide on teeth made a noticeable difference after 2 weeks.

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