-- Product Review --
The Ultimate Smile Professional At-Home Teeth Whitening Kit was due to arrive from Amazon.com on August 4th - 5th but due to the forest fires (resulted in some border closures and poor traveling conditions) and some vehicle troubles on our end we were unable to cross the border (we live a couple miles North of the US border) to pick up the packages until August 15th. We took some extra time with this product to do the 10-day whitening session and witness the results a few days later.
The write up in Amazon.com states: “Also included, the Cheek Retractor, designed as an additional tool for better comfort “ however this was not included in the kit I received. Comes with two silicon mouth trays and 2 syringes of the whitening gel, each with 5 ml. of gel; however you can request gel refills instead of purchasing the entire kit again. The Ultimate Smile Case does not actually hold the mouth trays after you have formed them to fit your teeth.
The instructions seemed a little cheaply done – large font on small slip of paper – any older home computer/color printer could have done this. The instructions themselves were vague and unclear. i.e. the first step said to “Place thermal tray in hot water (approximately 200 degrees) and get your teeth impressioned0. Ends may be cut to adjust to users size.” Typo’s and grammar errors were included in this quote – I copied it directly from the sheet. So how do you get your “teeth impressioned”? It didn’t say. Going by another kit I tried some time ago – the process involved getting a cup of boiling water, allowing it to cool several minutes, inserting a tray for up to 10 seconds and then placing in the mouth over either the upper or lower teeth and sucking into place firmly for about 30 seconds. You may have to repeat the process to get a good fit. You can also, as this kit’s instructions suggested, cut the ends of the mouth trays to fit your mouth correctly.
It did say to use 1 ml of the gel per session, so that would be 0.5 ml for each of the upper and lower tray, but this is too much gel and the excess rides on the gums stinging them – I’d use maybe 0.2 ml. Hold the trays in the mouth for 15 minutes (set a timer) and then it says to rinse the tray in cool water and return to the case. For one thing – I think it would be more sanitary to wash the trays and set in the open case to dry, and then store. However the case will not hold both mouth trays, no matter how you adjust them to try and fit them in. Also the instructions say to rinse the mouth with water, however I personally would rinse and then brush my teeth after the session to make sure that the residue was washed away. I personally would also brush and floss prior to each session to ensure that there is nothing impeding the product from reaching the entire surface of the teeth and in-between them as well.
The other kits I’ve tried (only two brands besides this one) suggested the steps I mentioned above and that was where I got that information from - I was surprised that the instructions with this kit didn’t say anything about the steps to take. Also – I was surprised to see that there was no recommendation for the frequency of using the kit – i.e. does one use it for 5 days in a row, and do this once a month? The kit just doesn’t say a word about this – leaving it up to the user to decide what to do. And finally I also noticed there were several typos and grammar errors in the instructions.
Neither the packaging or the instructions gave any indication as to the ingredients – however the description on Amazon did mention “The special Whitening Gel is our latest innovation-a patent-pending "primer for teeth" that accelerates the release of stain-fighting oxygen ions, while eliminating discomfort.” The write-up also mentioned a “priming” step, but didn’t go on to explain what that was. The long write-up via Amazon later listed the ingredients as: propylene glycol, kosher glycerin, carbomer, triethalanomine, carbamide peroxide, and peppermint oil.
Interestingly the write-up on Amazon also mentioned that the trays have “holes on either side to create an easy-breathing and comfortable experience.” The trays do not have holes in them… and reading that sentence my husband asked “Why does one need to breathe through their teeth?”.
However I did like the fact that there was very little packaging involved – other than the small paperboard box, there was only a small amount of bubble plastic packaging inside. Also, the product is manufactured in the US. As such, there is a smaller impact on the environment.
What astounded me was the original list price on Amazon.com - $168.88 (US) for this kit. It was slashed all the way down to $24.99 (US) however, a much more reasonable price for what you are getting – but I don’t know if that is a temporary price reduction or not.
I can’t really recommend this kit. As mentioned, there were several aspects that were troubling to me and I personally feel that the amount of gel you receive with this kit is much less, about half as much as the other kits I have tried in the past.
Award-winning authors Dave and Lillian Brummet: