Does peroxide-free whitening work?

Does peroxide-free whitening work?

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Peroxide free teeth whitening is a growing product segment that has become quite vocal in the whitening sphere in recent years. It may sound great with taglines such as "peroxide free", "natural ingredients" and "bleaching crystals", but does it actually make the teeth whiter? That's another story.

To simplify the issue, let's draw a parallel to hair coloring! If you want lighter hair color, you need a hair color/bleach compound with hydrogen peroxide - whether you go to the hairdresser or get at-home-products. Sure, there are DIY home remedies with lemon juice, but anyone who has tried it will agree that the results are not comparable to "the real deal". Then there is the silver shampoo, which can neutralize some yellow tones, but after a few weeks they are back again. Teeth whitening can work in a slightly similar way, where hydrogen peroxide corresponds to "the real teeth whitening", while peroxide free products are like a silver shampoo or lemon juice.


Most of us have discoloration and coatings on the tooth surface, but especially we all have deeper discoloration that over time has been packed into the enamel structure. What we call "real” teeth whitening does not involve painting white color onto the teeth. Instead it removes the discoloration that is packed inside the tooth, with the help of hydrogen peroxide or similar oxidizing substances.

Hydrogen peroxide is an oxidizing substance that releases free oxygen radicals, which in turn breaks down organic material.
The enamel itself is white and consists of non-organic material. The organic material that is broken down is in fact residue from coffee, tobacco, foods, beverages etc. that have been packed into the enamel structure. This deep discoloration can only be removed by an oxidizing substance (where hydrogen peroxide is the most common variety).
Tooth whitening products without peroxide are sold both online and in various stores today. These products do not contain any oxidizing substance, and thus cannot remove deep discoloration inside the tooth. Peroxide free whitening remedies can provide a certain perceived effect, by removing surface stains, however the result is temporary and disappears within a few weeks. These are the most common “whitening agents" in peroxide-free products:
  • Sodium bicarbonate that helps to loosen up superficial discoloration on the tooth, in the same way as the Brilliant Smile Oral care products do (using active ingredients).
  • Calcium crystals that attach to the tooth surface and provide an optical illusion of whiter teeth. Brilliant Smile’s Oral care products also contain a dye that produces the same optical illusion.
When you as a consumer compare prices, you need to make sure you are not comparing apples with oranges. Peroxide-free products normally hold a lower price level compared to the “real” teeth whitening with hydrogen peroxide, but as explained above, the results are not comparable at all. In terms of results, peroxide free whitening remedies are more similar to an effective whitening toothpaste, which in fact also tends to be much cheaper.
Therefore, we recommend that you use hydrogen peroxide whitening if you want to get rid of deep discoloration. It may be a bit pricy, but it does the job and gives a lasting result.

If you don’t need a big change in color shade, it may be enough for you to use a product that removes surface stains. Then Brilliant Smile whitening boost toothpaste is a better option than peroxide free whitening treatments, because it gives the same result for a cheaper price.

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