Whitening Strips vs Whitening Gels — Which is Better?

  1. How does teeth whitening actually work?
  2. So which one is better? Strips or Gels?


We all remember those commercials that promised whiter teeth by using a solution that appears to whiten teeth instantaneously. We’ve all seen those ads of toothpastes that show the before/after montage that seemed too good to be true. We’ve all wondered how the models for those commercials seem to have miraculously whiter teeth. The question we’re going to answer today is if these solutions actually work and which one works best. 


How does teeth whitening actually work?

In spite of the plethora of products that are available on the market. All of them make use of either of these 2 methods to facilitate whiter teeth:

  1. Chemical Action — Products that employ a chemical action of whitening make use of bleach to chemically remove stains on teeth. Typically bleach is used in whitening trays , gels or strips
  2. Physical Action — Products that employ abrasives (as found in toothpastes) to physically scrape the stains off of your teeth. These products are typically whitening toothpastes that aid in the physical removal of stains


So with these 2 methods of whitening in mind, I say let there be light! Light you say? How does that work? Well, light is used to facilitate the chemical reactions that gel based or whitening strip products use. The whitening solution in these products react chemically to light which produces the chemical reaction that provides whiter teeth. Here are the two methods that light based whitening systems use:

  1. Heat Based Light Systems — In theory, these systems employ heat given off from light to help increase the rate of the whitening reaction. The problem with these, however, is that excessive heat applied to your teeth could damage the soft tissues and nerves within your teeth. Additionally, the excess heat dries out the teeth which helps to promote whiter teeth; however, once the mouth re hydrates you could be back to square one.
  2. Photocatalyst Based Light Systems — These systems make use of Blue Light LEDs to help speed up the rate of the whitening reaction allowing for whiter teeth over just a few treatments. These do not use heat, and thus safer to use and less damaging in comparison to heat based lighting systems


Close of of tooth mock up, for AutoBrush blog

All teeth have an intricate network of nerves and soft tissue

So which one is better? Strips or Gels?

The fact of the matter is that both aid in the whitening of your teeth. The factors that affect this are the amount of whitening solution used and the amount of time it’s sitting there. Whitening strips make use of bleach solutions that whiten the surface of your teeth, but gels allow for a more localized treatment. The issue with most at-home whitening kits is that it can cost upwards of $200 dollars, which isn’t that much different from the cost of going to a dentist.

Whatever you choose, at AutoBrush, we offer whitening products that are significantly more affordable than most at home whitening kits. Our products make use of photocatalyst based reaction mechanisms to help whiten your teeth with only 10 minutes required between whitening sessions. Additionally, if you prefer to not use a chemical method of whitening, we also offer toothpastes that help facilitate whitening. Here’s a quick video on how our whitening kits work:



We’ve got you covered with whatever you decide to choose. You can check out some of our whitening products here: https://tryautobrush.com/collections/dental-grade-whitening

The Total Package product image, for AutoBrush blog


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