beauty

Four shades whiter teeth in 30 minutes? We put Philips Zoom Quickpro to the test.

Image: Candice before her treatment

I haven’t been much of a ‘bride.’ There have been no temper tantrums or bridezilla appearances, no outrageous requests, no early morning bridal bootcamp classes and certainly no three-month brow-scaping plans. In fact, it would be safe to assume that I have been a very laidback, very relaxed bride-to-be.

And then, like a pin to a balloon, the thought of two photographers and a videographer up in my grill began to unfold in my mind. There was going to be smiling, a lot of smiling, the type of smiling that forces your lips to twitch and cheeks to ache. And yes, my teeth, my not-so-pearly whites, were going to be on display.

While I’m sure my gnashers are completely un-intriguing to everyone around me, my teeth have always seemed a little too popcorn-coloured under my forensic gaze. Hoping to exchange popcorn for a perfectly white poached egg, I began by swapping out my regular toothpaste for an over-the-counter whitening toothpaste – but, I still wasn’t satisfied.

Perhaps a few small, barely noticeable, stains were removed but with the wedding fast approaching I felt it was time to try something a bit more professional.

BEFORE: "My teeth have always seemed a little too popcorn-coloured under my forensic gaze."

In search of a whiter smile I came across the Philips Quick Pro system, the quickest dentist-applied whitening product on the market. Offering a more subtle level of whitening than a full treatment, it’s perfect for those of us that don't feel as if they need a complete teeth overall, but still want them to look a little brighter - or a little less popcorn-coloured in my case. With a simple 10-minute application and 30-minute wear time, it sounded like the perfect solution for the time poor bride.

Quicker than you could say “four shades whiter,” I found myself at Sydney’s Pitt Street Dental Centre, with Dr Michael Cai and his team, ready for my test drive.

How does it work?

First up, the dentist began by applying a thick layer of vitamin E to my lips. You see, the next step is squeezing in a rather large mouthguard, so it pays to prep your lips beforehand.

After the mouthguard is in place, the dentist on duty applied a protectant, similar to play doh in texture, to my gums in an attempt to lower any possible sensitivity. She then painted the whitening solution, hydrogen peroxide to be exact, to my teeth before finishing with an innovative sealant to lock the peroxide in place.

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Now usually at this stage you would be free to remove the mouthguard, rinse and cleanse your mouth before getting up and heading back to work or picking up the wedding planning where you left off - peonies or fat white roses? But this time around my dentist suggested sitting in for the next thirty minutes to relax, recharge and write down any questions that might arise during the process.

What did it feel like?

For those of you worried about sensitivity or pain, I can report that I felt neither. I did experience a slight tingling sensation from time to time but the whole occurrence would last less than two seconds at a time. And after the treatment, well I was completely back to normal.

Check out these pearly whites. (Post continues after gallery.)

What were the results like?

Fellow Gen Y-ers, you’ll be pleased to hear that the results were instant - how often can you say that? As soon as I removed the whitening solution, with just a toothbrush and water, my teeth were noticeably brighter, noticeably less popcorn-coloured and still very much within the range of whiteness that is biologically attainable. Clearly Auburn’s Deputy Mayor hadn’t heard of the Philips Quick Pro system before he took the plunge.

AFTER: "My teeth were noticeably brighter, noticeably less popcorn-coloured and still very much within the range of whiteness that is biologically attainable."

Do I have to give up my coffee addiction?

Thankfully, abstaining from coffee is not part of the Philips Quick Pro system. I was instructed to avoid staining foods for two hours, meaning any food or drink that would stain a white shirt. This gives the teeth time to re-hydrate before they are subjected to staining foods (we’re looking at you red wine). After this time you are free to order that extra large, double shot, skim latte.

How much does the procedure cost?

The Philips Quick Pro system varies from dentist to dentist, but right now Pitt Street Dental Centre are offering the procedure for $228, including a full dental examination. That’s less than half the price of traditional dentist-applied whitening products.

For me, I suddenly found that I was confident enough to smile all the time - the effects of which last an awful lot longer than that three-month brow-scaping plan.

What methods of teeth whitening have you used?

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