If your smile isn't as bright as you'd like, we feel your pain; it's annoying to have pearly whites that aren't so white. Luckily, there are solutions—and quick ones at that! Just try these simple tricks to make your teeth seem whiter ASAP.
Try Berry-Colored Lipstick
Ever notice how a yellow shirt can make your face look sallow by reflecting the yellow tones in your skin? Well, lipsticks with yellow undertones can do the same thing with your teeth. Bluemercury CEO Marla Malcolm Beck suggests colors with blue undertones instead, such as Susan Posnick COLOR ESSENTIAL in Paris or MAC in Russian Red . If you're not a red girl, go for a blue-based pink like Hard Candy's Ombre Lipstick in Cheerful . These shades will make your teeth seem whiter and brighter. And if you can't bear to part with your signature shade, try a product like Benefit California Kissin' . It has a subtle blue shine you can apply over any lipstick.
Highlight Your Lips
Try applying a lip liner and gloss around the lips and a light concealer around the outer border of the lips. "This makes your lips appear fuller and makes your teeth seem whiter in contrast to your lip color," says makeup artist, Annie Mayo, founder of Advanced Mineral Makeup.
Choose the Right Eyeshadow
"Opt for cooler shades of eye makeup such as purples and greens or blue eye liner," suggests Timothy Stirneman, D.D.S., a family dentist at All Smiles Dental in Algonquin, Illinois. These shades on the eye lids help to deflect any yellow from the teeth, creating an optical illusion that works in all the right ways.
Eat More Fruits and Veggies
Jen Austin is a TV news anchor and pageant coach, and one thing she tells women who want to brighten their smile is to eat a lot of strawberries. "It's not only good for you, but it whitens your teeth naturally in between pro teeth whitening sessions," says Austin. Strawberries are natural teeth whiteners because they contain vitamin C (which helps to clear away plaque) and a natural astringent (which helps remove stains). Other edible teeth whiteners include crunchy fruits and veggies like apples and celery.
Coat Teeth in Petroleum Jelly
"As odd as it may sound, applying a layer of this right on the teeth will prevent any unwanted stains like coffee or lipstick and give your teeth a shiny look," says Jessica Emery, a cosmetic dentist and owner of Sugar Fix Dental Loft in Chicago. A lot of photographers use this trick when photographing models.
Brush on Bronzer
Another great trick for brightening your smile is contouring your face with bronzer. "By blending a matte foundation or bronzer under your cheekbone and down the bridge of your nose in a shade darker than your skin tone, you can contour the shape of your face to enhance your smile," says Tessa McCullough, a makeup artist at G2O Spa and Salon in Boston. Bonus: The sun-kissed glow you will achieve from bronzing will make your chompers seem even whiter.