to Score a Perfect Smile
sort through the plethora of fancy toothbrushes and whitening products
to give you the lowdown on what really works.
are putting a lot of money where their mouths are -- $3.4 billion a year
on oral care, to be exact. And why not? A great smile can make you look
younger and feel more confident. Our guide offers you the latest options
to chew on.
shapes: Worth it?
asked three top dentists (see list below) to weigh in on whether four
updated brush styles have major benefits
1.The new inexpensive battery-operated brushes -- likeCrest
SpinBrush Pro, Oral-B CrossAction PowerandColgate
Motion-- claim to remove more plaque. Our experts said:
Although manuals are also good at nixing plaque, power motion and a smaller
head size make brushing efficient and controlled and may encourage kids
to brush longer. Colgate ranked number one for its comfy handle; our docs
found its effectiveness comparable to that of pricey powered brushes.
SpinBrush Pro, $6.99, from Crest; at mass merchandisers. CrossAction Power,
$6.99, from Oral-B; at mass merchandisers. Motion, $5.99, from Colgate;
at mass merchandisers.
Radius toothbrush-- with three times more bristles than is standard
-- was created because its designers felt that normal brushes were too
small. Our experts said: The bristles are soft (which is a good thing),
but the large head can be difficult to maneuver, and some users may feel
it's too big for their mouth. Radius toothbrush, $8.99, from Radius; at
itsWhite & Clean"e;whitening
ribbon"e; helps remove stains. Our experts said: Unlikely. In their
opinion, the brush is fine, but the ribbon offers no added advantage.
White & Clean toothbrush, $2.99, from Mentadent; at mass merchandisers.
Oral-B CrossAction Vitalizer, Reach
Max, Colgate Massager
Massage Plushave rubber-pronged "e;massagers"e;
that the companies claim promote gum health. Our experts said: Massaging
isn't as important as plaque removal -- plus, due to the prongs' length
and thickness, you have to press hard to get the regular bristles to make
contact with your teeth. CrossAction Vitalizer toothbrush, $3.99, from
Oral-B; at mass merchandisers. Max toothbrush, $3.99, from Reach; at mass
merchandisers. Massager toothbrush, $3.29, from Colgate; at mass merchandisers.
Massage Plus toothbrush, $3.49, from Crest; at mass merchandisers.
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