I’m not gonna lie – I was expecting more of a difference the first time around. Nothing huge – maybe just a shade or two difference. Just enough to make people stop and comment, the way they do in all the commercials for traditional teeth whitening products. “There’s something … different about you! Did you lighten your hair? Did you have a vacation? Are you working out?”
As if you can’t tell what’s different. You’re standing right next to the White-Toothed Wonder, who is sporting a frighteningly large smile, and you can’t tell what’s different. So believable. That’s about as believable as Taylor Swift’s eternal amazement at winning awards. (“Oh my God! No – no way! Oh my God!”)
One of the things I don’t always enjoy about being Mother Nature’s Maid is that sometimes it’s more difficult to make your own stuff than just going up to Walmart and picking up a product. I used to be a big fan of Listerine teeth whitener – so easy to use. It comes in something like a gallon jug, and you use it exactly like mouthwash – swish, spit, done. (I sill never got comments, but at least I was making an effort … about once a week.)
What is Mother Nature’s solution for this one? According to Herbal Home Remedies, my favorite natural recipe book, natural teeth whitening involves a mashed-up strawberry, baking soda and cream of tartar. Herbal Home Remedies recommends mashing up 3-6 strawberries for a single treatment, but this seemed rather excessive to me, especially when I considered how difficult it is to fit more than two average-sized strawberries in the average-sized mouth. So I scaled back:
- 1 strawberry, mashed
- ½ tsp Baking Soda
- ½ tsp Cream of Tartar
- Rub the strawberries on your teeth and let sit for 5 minutes. Rinse with the Baking Soda/Tartar mixed in water.
The first time I tried this, it was hard to tell how much strawberry stayed on my teeth, and judging by the amount I swallowed, I’d say it wasn’t much. The second time around, I put the fruit in my retainer (the clear plastic kind you get form the orthodontist), and that was much easier.
As I said, I haven’t noticed much difference yet, but when I mentioned this, my mother – the queen of oral hygiene – said I have to give it time. So I’m going to keep up with it – hopefully more frequently than once a week – and see how it goes.
If you see me in the next few weeks and notice a change, it’s not because I lightened my hair or went to the beach or started working out. Actually, the way it’s going now, it looks like the change won’t be my frighteningly white teeth either. It’s probably just a little extra greasiness in my hair.