Most of us have used a teeth whitener at some point in our lives, whether it's a post-braces treatment at the dentist as a teen or a drugstore buy like Crest Whitestrips. Of course, continued use of these products can strip your tooth enamel, which is the outer surface layer that protects your teeth from everyday wear and tear, like chewing, biting, and grinding. Tooth and gum sensitivity is another common side effect.
These concerns are what led Business Insider's Mara Leighton to the best-selling teeth-whitening product on Amazon: Active Wow Teeth Whitening Charcoal Powder ($25). The all-natural product has a staggering 13,300 customer reviews on Amazon, 80% of which include five-star ratings, and it surpasses the ever-popular Crest 3D Whitestrips ($30) by roughly 11,000 reviews.
So does it work? According to Leighton, who tested the product herself, the short answer is yes. "I noticed a change after the first few uses, which is impressive, in a more uniform and natural whitening of my teeth," she writes. "The refined charcoal powder is loose inside, so you have to be careful opening the container, but from there it's pretty simple: Dip your damp toothbrush in the powder, and brush the powder over your teeth as you regularly would with toothpaste for a few minutes."
She does admit that the effect is more gradual than using a standard Whitestrip, which usually gives you results in 30 minutes. "This is now a helpful tool in my weekly arsenal rather than an immediate conversion from not-so-great to perfect," she adds. "Personally, I'll continue to use it to maintain my teeth and would likely buy another once this empties—which should be awhile since there really is a ton in there for $25." Shop Amazon's best-selling natural teeth whitener below.