Samuel L. Jackson shot by John Russo for Gentleman's Journal

How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

We asked the real experts the questions you’ve always wanted answers to, for the gentleman in hot pursuit of that elusive Hollywood smile…

If the thought of baring your teeth to offer a lacklustre “cheese” before a camera fills you with self-conscious dread, we are willing to bet that you’re in the market for a whiter pair of pegs.

The Age of the Selfie has dawned, and it is quite simply impossible to avoid your less-than-sparkling smile being revealed to the world. And, a megawatt smile is no longer the punchline to an iconic episode of Friends, it’s as crucial to scoring a right swipe as taking a photo with your puppy.

How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist
Dr. Mark Hughes, founder of Harley Street Dental Studio.

Now, the challenge for the modern gentleman looking to straighten up his smile, is separating the decent from the duds in the dentistry aisle. As ever, GJ are on hand to get the best advice from those in the know, and lead you towards the pearly white light at the end of the tunnel.

We called on Dr. Mark Hughes, Founder of Harley Street Dental Studio and celebrity dentist of choice, to bust some myths and give some advice on how to achieve that Sinatra-esque smile.

Invest in an electric toothbrush...

A swathe of TV adverts polishing away animated pieces of plaque would have us believe that a manual toothbrush simply cannot compare to its supercharged counterpart. But, are they really worth the extra money?

Dr. Mark says:They really are better, in so many ways. They assist with technique, penetrate and clean further than a manual brush can. Plus, they have timers to let you know how long to keep brushing for.”

How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

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Get to know the secret stainers...

So, we all know that indulging in a few too many glasses of Burgundy can lead to a less-than-sterling smile. But, there are a few lesser-known culprits which might be staining your teeth, too.

Dr. Mark says: “Anything that would destroy a crisp white shirt! Turmeric, tomato sauce – it doesn’t always have to be the unhealthy things. Drinking chilled still water after every meal or rinsing your mouth with water will help to swill away any debris that could stick to teeth and linger and I’d advise using floss or interproximal brushes twice a day to dislodge build-up between the teeth”

How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

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How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

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Do your research around at-home kits...

They are a pound a dozen across the internet right now, but how can you be sure that you’re buying the real deal? The key (unfortunately) seems to be that you really do get what you pay for, and that a trip to your dentist for an accurate fitting will prove invaluable.

Dr. Mark says:The best professional kits are home-based, but come with very well made and custom-fitting trays and professional gel systems. I always advise a combination of home and in surgery.”

How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

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How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

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Brush before breakfast...

We finally have the definitive answer on what the correct etiquette is here…

Dr. Mark says: Always before. To reduce the bacterial built up over the night. Acid is produced after eating so brushing after eating just brushes or scrubs the acid even further into the enamel”

How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

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How to get whiter teeth, according to a Harley Street dentist

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Further Reading