Having a smile you’re proud of is a big part of being confident and vibrant in our conversations and day to day interactions. If you’re always worried about the color of your teeth, it can hinder some of that confidence and hold you back. A lot of the time, that lack of confidence shows! If your teeth are more discolored than you’d like, there’s a few different things you can try at home before spending money on expensive treatments or possibly damaging the health of your teeth and gums with store bought whiteners.

Most of these options use simple ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen, and are very inexpensive! Of course, don’t try anything without consulting your dentist first!

  1. Coconut oil and baking soda! You probably already knew I was going to suggest baking soda. It’s widely known that baking soda is a mild abrasive and can work to gently whiten your teeth over time. A lot of tooth pastes already have this common ingredient in them! Mix a teaspoon of baking soda with a teaspoon of coconut oil and you have yourself a cheap option for whitening your teeth. Plus, coconut oil has anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties and can help kill bacteria that cause bad breath.
  2. Hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. Here’s another mixture you can most likely go and mix up right now! Mix 1 part hydrogen peroxide and 1 part baking soda and brush your teeth as normal. You can also just rinse your mouth out with diluted hydrogen peroxide. It works to kill bad breath germs, helps whiten teeth and can even help heal certain mouth sores and swollen gums.
  3. Here’s a fruity one! You can crush up strawberries into a paste, and put them on a banana peel. Rub the banana peel on your teeth and work in the paste! The acid from the strawberries will work to whiten teeth and the minerals in the banana peel help as well. Use once a week for up to 7 minutes at a time! Be cautious with using treatments that utilize acid, as this can damage the enamel on your teeth and leave them more prone to discoloration.
  4. Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is another thing you can try to whiten your teeth at home. Always use raw apple cider vinegar in your treatments, the kind with “The Mother”, which has enzymes and friendly bacteria that fight bacteria that cause bad breath, and gently whiten teeth. Mix 1 part apple cider vinegar to 2 parts water and swish for 2 minutes. This is another method you don’t want to do too often, because of the acidic properties in ACV. Try this 1-2 times a month!

The number one way to keep your teeth from getting discolored is to practice healthy habits and brush twice a day. Avoid drinks that can stain your teeth like coffee and tea, and when you do have them, brush your teeth right after for 2 minutes! These DIY methods can help whiten your teeth at home, but of course don’t use them in place of these regular habits.