Smile Brilliant Teeth Whitening

smile brilliant

I’ve never whitened my teeth before in fact I hate anyone seeing my teeth as they are so stained and misaligned. If I’m completely honest I don’t really understand how teeth whitening works, I know that celebrities always have perfectly white teeth but I assumed it was down to veneers rather than whitening.

What I do know is that teeth whitening will NOT alter the natural colour of your teeth. So why use it then? The tooth is composed of 2 main visible components which are Enamel and Dentin.

Enamel is a clear and hard protective coating that rest on top of the dentin which is a soft bone like tissue. Everyone’s enamel is clear and collects tough to remove stains over time however not everyone’s dentin is naturally bright white. Some are fortunate to have naturally bright white dentin while others have an off white or in rare cases a yellow colored dentin. Teeth whitening will only remove the stains from the enamel thus revealing the true colour of your dentin.

I have no idea what the original colour of my dentin is, I’ve tried to take good care of my teeth and only have one filling but I do love coffee, tea and other things that cause teeth staining so my teeth are a bit of a nasty colour.

smile brilliant

smile brilliant

I tried the The LED teeth whitening system* by Smile Brilliant which is perfect for those who want great tooth whitening results but are on a budget. The LED system is far more effective than something you would buy from a chemist due to its 22% carbamide peroxide tooth whitening gel and high strength LED light which accelerates the whitening process.

smile brilliant

The ingredients in the teeth whitening system are: Glycerin 77.1% | Carbamide Peroxide 22% | Carbomer 0.5% | Menthol 0.2% | EDTA 0.2% and the product has a shelf life of 2 years refrigerated or 1 year at room temperature (unrefrigerated).

smile brilliant

I’m only interested in actually whitening my front teeth as they are the only teeth that people can see when I open my mouth or smile so I expected to get around 5-8 applications from the gel.

The process is really simple, you pull off the teeth whitening pen cap, twist the bottom clockwise to move the gel to the top of the pen, paint the gel evenly on the front surface of your front upper and lower teeth and the crevices where your teeth come together and finally insert the mouth guards.

The LED light is placed up to your teeth and you wrap your lips around the plastic guard, treatment times vary based on individual sensitivity levels but it is recommended you leave the light in your mouth for the first 20-40 minutes and the gel and protective tray for 1-3 hours.  The first timescale is manageable for me but there is no way I could possibly leave the tray in my mouth for 1-3 hours so when I started the treatment I wasn’t expecting great results.

After 3 weeks of use there is a definite change of colour not brilliant white but a much whiter shade than I had. I’ve only managed 40 mins at a time as it’s not comfortable for me to keep the tray in my mouth any longer, although I don’t have the confidence to post pictures of my teeth on my blog I have been smiling more in public with my mouth open so I look like I’m actually smiling and not grimacing which is great.

*Press Sample*

Cheeky Wipes – Reusable Wipes

cheekywipes

I’ve been using reusable baby wipes since Arthur was a couple of weeks old primarily because baby wipes are just so expensive and at the rate he needs his nappy changed I could quite easily get through 2-4 packs a week.

My friend Diane alerted me to Cheeky Wipes so I decided to purchase a mini kit of 25 wipes and a separate mucky box to put the dirty wipes into.

I figured that £26.95 worked out the same as around 11 packs of my usual baby wipes so in just under 3 months they had paid for themselves.   I noticed when I started to use these wipes that I used far less than I would have done with disposable wipes and they are so much easier to use.

inside

Cheeky wipes couldn’t be easier to use, you basically fill the bottom of your wipe box with water to the first line inside. Put a couple of drops of essential oil blend into the water, my oil is lavender and chamomile as I’m using the one included in the kit. Pop your baby wipes into the box and turn over a couple of times so they absorb the water and you’re ready to go.

wipes

When you’re ready to use the wipes just squeeze the excess water into the box and use as you would use a disposable wipe.  The wipes are super soft to the touch and I’ve had no problems using them on Arthur’s sensitive skin.

To discard your wipes you can either pop them in a mucky box which is filled with water and essential oil or pop them straight into your nappy bin if you use cloth nappies.

I have a mesh bag in my mucky wipe box that I just lift out and pop into the washing machine with my nappies, I hang the wipes to dry on the washing line and have found that so far I’ve not had any staining of the wipes, this could be a mixture of the rubbing in the machine or sunlight.  The wipes dry outside in next to no time and I was really surprised at how well they kept their shape even after being in a full nappy wash.

When you’re out and about you fill up the waterproof bag with a couple of wipes which is included with the cheeky wipes set and you’re all set.

I now have 50 wipes in my stash and although we have been using these wipes for 12 months they still look in perfect condition which is astounding.  I do a wash every two days and find that 50 wipes is a perfect amount for us but families with a child who doesn’t go through as many nappy changes will find the 25 wipe set suits them just fine.

I’ve got my eye on some hand and face wipes next or even some cloth sanitary pads as I’m trying to make a conscious effort to lower my household waste in a one woman bid to save the environment step by step.  I did ask my family at the weekend their thoughts on using reusable toilet paper which was met by a firm NO!

 

Cloth Nappy Week The Results

Reusable nappies

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This time last week I had just started using cloth nappies again after quitting when Arthur was still a tiny baby.  I owned 8 nappies that I received as part of the Reusable Nappy Challenge, a week later I own over 50 nappies and I can honestly say I’m hooked on cloth.

The Nappy Gurus and Fill Your Pants sent me a fantastic selection of nappies to trial and after a week of use I’m happy to share my thoughts with you.

Smartipants

 

smartipants1

The first nappy I tried was the Smartipants One Size Pocket Nappy (£10.80).  This nappy is quite unique because you don’t need to remove the insert in the wash, it comes out itself. I really like the fit of this nappy, it doesn’t leak and you have no hassle when it comes to changing as you don’t need to get your fingers wet removing the insert.  The only downside to this nappy is that it only comes in plain colours, this is very trivial and most people wont be bothered at all by this but I love prints so I really do hope the designers bring out a range of printed nappies so I can add them to my growing pile.

Charlie Banana

charlie banana1

I love the Charlie Banana One Size Pocket Nappy (£12.63) so much that I bought 4 more in various prints.  The elastic can be tightened to get a better fit of the nappy which is a huge bonus, both liners can be used at the same time for extra absorbency which is great for heavy wetters like Arthur.  One big bonus to this nappy is that disposable inserts can be bought which can be handy if you are going on holiday, I’ve just purchased some for our summer holiday to save on the washing.  Charlie Banana are without a doubt in my top 3 nappy brands.

Little Lamb One Size

Arthur_Little Lamb

I own 4 Little Lamb One Size Pocket Nappies (£8.25) and I can’t seem to get the fit right so I end up with compression leaks.  The bamboo boosters do seem to soak up a lot of liquid but after around an hour of wear I find Arthur is wet around his legs so if any one has any tips about how I can prevent this I would love to hear them.

Little Lamb Cotton

little lamb_wrap

I adore the Little Lamb Cotton Nappies (£10.00) for night time use so much that I bought 5 more.  My Nappy Guru Sarah gave me a great tip about boosting these nappies and I now lay an extra booster between the nappy and wrap which is working really well.  The downside to these nappies is that they do take a while to dry so if I can’t get them outside they can take until the next day to be completely dry to touch.

Grovia_Hybrid

 

Grovia Soaker pads

The GroVia Hybrid (£9.99) is another nappy that is in my top 3, I’ve recently purchased 3 more as I love them so much. I think the biggest appeal to me are the Soaker Pads (£11.83) and like the Charlie Banana the inserts come in a disposable option too.  Unfortunately I don’t have an action shot of this nappy as I’ve been using it when we have been out and about and a nappy change has been required before we arrived home.  I find the pads super absorbent and the shell takes no time to dry, you do have to be careful when drying the soaker pads though as they need to be turned inside out halfway through drying to ensure they dry all the way through.

Grovia All in One

The GroVia All In One (£17.45) is a great alternative to the hybrid nappy, it has a sewn in liner with the option of an additional liner which attaches with poppers making it perfect for heavy wetters.  These nappies are a slim fit and look really good when worn, the only reason I haven’t purchased more is purely because of the cost, they are a very expensive nappy and I personally prefer the hybrid but that’s just personal choice.

totsbots_bag

totsbots

Anyone who follows me on Instagram will know that I am slightly obsessed with TotsBots Easyfit One Size (£13.59) I own 15 of these beautiful nappies and have more on order.  The absorbency of these nappies is great, the fit is perfect and of course the patterns are beautiful.  I know a few people who can’t use these nappies as their child can open the hook and loop fastening but I’ve been really lucky and Arthur hasn’t tried to take his off so far.  Readers may be interested to know that you can get a range of Frugi prints in TotsBots nappies, I’ve just purchased the transport one in the hope that David can be as passionate about using cloth nappies as I am.

Bambino Miosolo

miosolo

Finally we have the Bambino Miosolo One Size Nappy (£11.99).  I love these nappies and have 9 in my collection.  The Miosolo is an excellent all rounder and I’ve also been using it at night with an extra liner and a wrap.  I’ve had no leaks and get 3-4 hours wear when using during the day.  Out of all of my nappies I probably get the best fit and absorbency from this one and the London Calling nappy is my current favourite.

I hope you have enjoyed reading my cloth nappy posts, if you have taken the plunge into cloth I’d love to read your journey so please leave links in the comments.

*All Nappies shown are press samples.  Prices correct at the time of writing.

The Nappy Gurus

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I’ve mentioned The Nappy Gurus a few times already this week and you’re probably wondering who they are so let me explain.  Since 2009 The Nappy Gurus have been providing their expert advice on reusable nappies and wipes to parents throughout the UK.  All of the gurus are mums who have used reusable nappies on their own babies so know what they are talking about.  They can help you choose which nappies to use if you are starting out and can help with any issues a cloth using parent may have.

The word Guru implies knowledge to me and my nappy Guru Sarah is definitely knowledgeable about all things cloth, she has been amazing and inspiring. She talked through each of my nappies and explained how it was best to use them and the pros and cons of each style.  We discussed how to wash the nappies,using cloth wipes and how to deal with a heavy wetter at night time.  After seeing my post yesterday Sarah offered advice about how I should wash my nappies and a cream I could use on his bottom which I think is fantastic, it’s refreshing to know I’m not alone on my cloth nappy journey.

Sarah talked to me about Infant potty training (EC) which I found fascinating and I would love for her to write a post about it on my blog if she has time as I think other parents would also love to find out more.

Sarah can offer free advice to any mum who wishes to start using cloth nappies and can even give advice to mums who are already using cloth nappies and if you would like to speak with her just send me an email and I can put you in touch.

Check back tomorrow for my nappy post where I will be talking about each brand individually and highlighting what I like and don’t like about the nappy and how it’s working for us.

Halfway Through Cloth Nappy Week

Today we’re halfway through Cloth Nappy Week and it’s been great fun, I’ve entered lots of competitions, tried lots of different nappies and gained a lot of knowledge about cloth nappies. (I’ve also spent a lot of money but we will keep that one quiet).

Arthur is currently teething and has awful nappy rash which has been very testing especially since I can’t use my usual nappy cream with cloth nappies.  I’ve been using cloth wipes to clean with a camomile and lavender essential oil treatment and have been changing the nappy every hour and it seems to be working. So far today I’ve gone through a bucket load of nappies (not an exaggeration) I think there are 14 nappies ready for the wash in the morning.

I’ve put Arthur to bed in a disposable which I’m not really happy about but it was the only option I had as I wanted my nappy treatment to work overnight and it couldn’t be done in cloth.  Hopefully he will wake up with healed skin and we can go back to cloth again in the morning.

I’d love to know if any of my readers have taken advantage of any offers on nappies so far this week and what you have been buying.