Does the $20 TikTok Teeth Whitening Pen Actually Work? Here’s Our Honest Review (2024)

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• Value: 18/20
• Functionality: 18/20
• Quality/Ease of Use: 19/20
• Aesthetics: 20/20
• Speed of Treatment: 20/20

TOTAL: 95/100

Forget Instagram face. These days, all the significant beauty trends are born on video platforms, and we’re here to kick the tires on a recent micro-trend we’re calling “TikTok teeth.” Thanks to a highly circulated viral TikTok video, hordes of people are heading online a to buy the Spotlight teeth-whitening pen (and once in the semi-privacy of their cars, brushing this solution on their teeth for instant brightening).

Since I live in Los Angeles, the land where high-definition cameras have made a blinding smile as necessary for survival as a reliable set of wheels, I had to visit two Ulta locations before I found a Spotlight pen in stock. Side note: I was pretty skeptical to start.

Even though I’d seen people get instant results using the pen on TikTok, I assumed it was some sort of camera manipulation. I was also apprehensive about trying anything that had enough bleaching agent in it to produce fast results. You see, years before, I used teeth whitening strips, which left my teeth permanently sensitive to temperatures. And besides, it wasn’t like I had a big toothy grin to show off anyway…so what’s the big deal if my teeth were a little coffee-stained?

Well, the deal became big (at least to me) when I started going out in public without a mask. Recently, I was headed to a friend’s pool party when I looked in the mirror—like really looked at my reflection for the first time in months—and thought, wait, when did my canines start to resemble the yellowed fangs of our family’s beloved (and now deceased) mastiff? So began my teeth-whitening journey.

And now, a word about my personal grooming habits to give you some additional context. If I had to choose one word to describe my beauty behavior that word would be “intermittent.” As in, the only thing I can remember to do daily is brush my teeth, and that’s thanks to childhood indoctrination.

Since the age of 11, I’ve been polymorphously perverse when it comes to beauty. I’ve had brief forays into scrupulously tending to my face, hair, cellulite, etc., but in terms of being committed to a regimen for an extended period of time? Not so much. Which is why I was enticed by the Spotlight pen’s promises of instant results and cumulative effects even when used sporadically. Add to that, the minty fresh flavor that claims to transmit a “light, just-brushed aroma” from your mouth and I had try it.

So, did it work? To my surprise, yes it did. After I pulled the silver pen from its recycled paper packaging, I twisted the base 20 (!) times to release the fluid onto the bristles. I just brushed a thin coat on my front and side teeth. (I didn’t bother with my molars because they aren’t really visible when I smile). Then, I held my mouth open for the recommended five minutes to let the solution dry. This is also when I learned that my drool reflex is very healthy and the only way I could stop from spitting up everywhere was to make loud sucking sounds as I waited for the time to elapse. My dogs looked at me in alarm as though I were some sort of zombie.

A few minutes in, my formerly yellowed teeth looked whiter overall, and in my case, my teeth on the sides more closely matched the bright porcelain hue of my front two crowns. As I splashed water from the sink onto my teeth to rinse off the solution, I marveled that my teeth didn’t feel sore, nor did my gums feel achy. And they did look brighter—even after just one application.

I’ve used the pen a few times over the past week and have come to look forward to this moment of self-care. It’s low lift and high reward. And the results aren't just anecdotal; there’s real science behind the pen. The hydrogen peroxide and hydrogen carbonate calcium in the formula have shown demonstrable results in clinical studies. Oh, and these whitening pens are part of a line of oral care products started by two dentist sisters in Ireland (who we love following on TikTok by the way). Thanks to them, I’m genuinely happy to smile at my maskless self in the mirror.

Does the $20 TikTok Teeth Whitening Pen Actually Work? Here’s Our Honest Review (2024)


Does the teeth whitening pen really work? ›

Teeth Whitening Pens are a great way to achieve a whiter smile at home. They are easy to use, convenient and affordable. If teeth whitening pens are not for you, there are plenty of other whitening options to explore. Be sure to speak with your dental professional to discuss your options.

What do dentists say about teeth whitening pens? ›

No, whitening pens don't make your teeth whiter for good. The effects of whitening pens are temporary, so you'll need to use them often to keep your teeth at the level of whiteness you want.

What is the Tiktok teeth whitening? ›

3% hydrogen peroxide with mouthwash

The ingredient itself is safe for whitening and is in professional grade whitening formulas at higher concentrations. Some dentists say it'll kill all the bacteria in your mouth - both good and bad. Others say it can be swished twice a day, undiluted, for 30 seconds and be okay.

How long does it take to see results from whitening pen? ›

Whitening pens take from 2 days up to a week. They provide minimal results that are usually not long-lasting. Whitening pens are small, plastic tubes containing whitening gel that are transportable and used for spot stain removal.

Can yellow teeth become white? ›

Yellow teeth can be completely whitened with teeth whitening technologies at the dentist or at home. Depending on the status of your yellow teeth as well as your needs, the doctor will advise and prescribe the appropriate method.

Do whitening pens work to whiten teeth? ›

Teeth whitening pens work the same way as other whitening products, but they use a serum to apply whitening ingredients to your teeth. Most teeth whitening pens use a peroxide formulation—either hydrogen or carbamide—to break down stains.

Are teeth whitening pens better than strips? ›

Teeth whitening pens can reach narrow crevices, but one must use them diligently so the saliva does not wash away the whitening gel. On the other hand, the whitening strips create a barrier between the saliva and the teeth whitening gel, thus ensuring the gel works better.

Is it OK to use whitening pen everyday? ›

For that, make sure to read the application instructions at the back of the product as they can vary. Some recommend using the whitening pen daily, 2-3 times a day, to see any results. You may end up using it 30-60 times in 2 weeks. However, make sure that the frequency of usage isn't more than what's considered safe.

Do you wash your teeth after using whitening pen? ›

SLEEP: The dried coating stays on your teeth to whiten overnight. BRUSH: The next morning, brush like normal to remove the coating and reveal your brighter, whiter smile. REPEAT: Two weeks of treatment is recommended for the best results.

What is the number 1 teeth whitening? ›

The Crest Whitening Emulsion with LED Light stands out as the best overall teeth whitening product due to its ease of use, effectiveness, and comfort. Its simple, straightforward process, coupled with the ability to carry on with normal activities during treatment, makes it highly convenient and user-friendly.

Does purple toothpaste actually whiten yellow teeth? ›

Purple toothpaste is based on the principle of color theory, where the purple hue is supposed to neutralize yellow stains on teeth. While this might sound scientifically plausible, the reality is it's more of an optical illusion than an oral health solution. The effect is purely cosmetic and extremely temporary.

Is there anything that actually whitens your teeth? ›

Brush with baking soda and hydrogen peroxide paste:

Baking soda has teeth whitening properties; that's why it's prevalent in toothpaste commercials. It helps in rubbing off stains from the tooth surface due to its mildly abrasive nature. Hydrogen peroxide, on the other hand, is a natural bleaching agent.

Can you use a whitening pen twice a day? ›

*For best results, use your teeth whitening pen twice a day, morning and evening for 14 days uninterrupted or until desired results are achieved. For maintenance, continue to use whitening pen 2 – 3 times per week.

How can I whiten my teeth at home? ›

Seven Ways to Naturally Whiten Teeth
  1. Eat Strawberries. One of the simplest ways to naturally whiten your teeth is just by eating strawberries. ...
  2. Eat Plenty of Fruits and Vegetables. ...
  3. Brush After You Eat or Drink. ...
  4. Rinse with Apple Cider Vinegar. ...
  5. Apply Coconut Oil. ...
  6. Brush Your Tongue. ...
  7. Use Baking Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide.

Is the Colgate teeth whitening pen safe? ›

The ingredients in the Colgate Optic White Overnight Teeth Whitening Pen have been proven safe.

How often should you whiten your teeth with pen? ›

Frequency of Application

Teeth whitening pens tend to work best when they are used once a day for at least a week, but generally longer than a week.

How often should you use a teeth whitening pen? ›

Instructions will likely have you use it twice daily.

Is Colgate whitening pen safe for enamel? ›

Yes, the Colgate Optic White Overnight Teeth Whitening Pen has an enamel safe formula.

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