At Home Teeth Whitening: Does it Work?

I’m not the type of girl who obsesses over hair and makeup but what I do care a lot about is my smile.  I’ve tried several things from teeth whitening strips (didn’t work well and messy) to gel you get at the dentist (they always made my teeth white but they also made my teeth so sensitive)!

IMG_1515

I was pretty pumped when Smile Brilliant reached out to see if I’d like to try their custom teeth whitening system. I researched the company and the ingredients they use and decided it was worth a try!

The Process

I’m not going to walk through the entire process for you because the kit includes detailed instructions but here is the general process.IMG_8079

  1. Make the impressions.  This part was actually kind of fun, my husband even enjoyed watching me do this.  You receive 3 sets of catalyst + base paste. You will only need two sets, but they include and extra in case you mess up. You will mix them up, according to directions, until you form a bright blue paste.  Once you have your paste, you press it into your molds and follow the instructions for creating your impressions.IMG_8082.jpg
  2. Mail the impressions. After the impressions have hardened, you simply place them in the provided envelope and mail them off!  Easy, right?
  3. Time to whiten! Once you receive your trays in the mail (the company is very fast at this) you’re ready to whiten! You receive 4 syringes each of the whitening + desensitizing gel. I got 4 treatments out of one syringe (I also have a tiny mouth), these will last me a while. You brush and floss your teeth and then put the Whitening Gel in the trays.  I did this treatment for 60 minutes (they recommend 60-90 minutes) and they recommend doing this for 7-14 times the first time you do this, depending on the amount of staining.IMG_1275 2IMG_1513
  4. Desensitizing gel.  After you’re done with the whitening, you immediately brush your teeth (pat them dry) and then put the desensitizing gel in for 15 minutes.  You don’t brush your teeth or eat/ drink for a while afterwards, this ensures the gel gets into your teeth/gums.

The Results

I did this treatment 8 times. I knew it was working but I didn’t realize how much until my mom made several comments about how white my teeth were, I actually went to the dentist and the first thing she said was, “wow, your teeth are really white”, and I had 2 people message me on Instagram asking me what toothpaste I use (this made me lol).cropped-img_0977

Here’s my before and after —I hate even showing you this because it’s really hard to take pictures of your teeth.  I took these pictures at different houses so the lighting was completely different. My teeth were pretty white to begin with; however, my teeth are definitely whiter (picture doesn’t really justify how much) and a lot brighter now.

IMG_1520

What I Loved:

  • You get to make the impressions at home and then they ship you your trays, very convenient and like I said above, fun!IMG_1274
  • This process takes longer than other systems that I’ve tried, but it delivers permanent results because it lifts the stains, rather than just whitening the surface
  • My teeth aren’t sensitive when using these because it includes a sensitivity treatment
  • EASY to use!  I made dinner, I cleaned, or just relaxed while wearing the trays.IMG_1514IMG_1265 2
  • I 100% believe it’s worth the cost (which isn’t much at all) —as you’ll have the trays forever and just need to get more whitening gel

I’m hosting a giveaway for $149 Smile Brilliant Credit.  You can enter here: www.smilebrilliant.com/g/adventuresofatwinmom  It’s open for 2 weeks to USA, UK, Australia and Canadian residents.

You can also use adventuresofatwinmom15 to get 15% off your order.

<!– SMILE BRILLIANT ARTICLE WIDGET START –> <a id=”smilebrilliant_widget_article” ishidden=”1″ title=”Professional Teeth Whitening”>Professional Teeth Whitening</a> <script src=”//www.smilebrilliant.com/widget-article/adventuresofatwinmom” type=”text/javascript”></script> <!– SMILE BRILLIANT ARTICLE WIDGET END –>

1 Year as a Stay-At-Home Mom

IMG_3235

It’s officially been one year since I became a stay-at-home mom (SAHM)! I feel like I just blinked and an entire year has passed!  This has me feeling ALL THE FEELS!   Today, I’m answering a few questions that I often get asked, sharing a short review of the past year,  and sharing a few random thoughts/opinions from other stay-at-home friends.

  1. What is the hardest part? I became a stay at home because I wanted to spend more time with our kids and I didn’t want to miss any more special moments. But… I was naïve and honestly thought my life would become drastically easier, I was in for a rude awakening. I had a stressful job but being at home all day chasing two toddlers around is way more exhausting than work ever was.  There has been so many times that I thought “what I would give to be at work right now.”  My husband jokes when the kids are being a handful that he can’t wait to head into work to get a “break”.  What we mean by “getting a break” is when you have twin toddlers, it’s nonstop.  Working isn’t technically a “break” but it’s a change in pace, it’s a change in scenery.  When you’re a stay at home mom, you don’t ever really get a change in scenery, you’re always with your kids and you never have any me time. At work, I at least had time by myself and time to not be focusing on my kiddos.
  2. How do you afford to stay home? My husband and I have always lived off of one income even when we were both working full time. We made the decision while we were engaged that one of our incomes would just go straight into savings for the future. When we decided that it was best that I stay at home while the kids were young, we just said goodbye to less money going into our savings. A big thing for me is I didn’t want our family to make any sacrifices financially for me not working… if we had to cut out anything in our life or change our lifestyle in any way then I would or will go back to work.
  3. What’s the best part of being a stay-at-home mom? Not waking up at 5 am anymore… just kidding! The best part by far is spending my days with Camden and Ella! I am so grateful for this extra time I get with them. I will never take being a stay at home mom for granted!

This picture was my last day of work (even though technically I’m employed until January 2019, my wonderful work approved a leave of absence for a year in case I change my mind), it was so exciting to come home and realize I could spend 100% of my days focused on my little family.  Can you tell how happy I was? This will forever be one of my favorite pictures because I was filled with joy and so excited for the future.

IMG_8065 4Soon after, we celebrated the kiddos first holidays…

Halloween23032542_10209914723770678_3215651202357807018_n

ThanksgivingIMG_1118

ChristmasIMG_1107

IMG_1877Judd got an amazing job offer in Charleston and we started building our dream home.IMG_1789IMG_3057IMG_3018IMG_2911

We played, played, and played.IMG_1652IMG_1894

Camden and Ella turned 1 and we had the cutest little birthday party for them! You can read more about this here.IMG_34681-59231592311-5923959239IMG_2857

They were both teething hard around their birthday! 😦 IMG_2858

We were so proud of surviving the first year as twin parents!IMG_3568

We took our first international vacation as a family of 4 to Canada.IMG_5363 2

We played hard…

IMG_6200IMG_5355 2IMG_5885IMG_5797

They kept growing and growing.IMG_6910IMG_6176IMG_5934IMG_5619

IMG_5231IMG_5229IMG_3937

We went on vacation to Florida. You can read about that here.

IMG_7034IMG_7347IMG_7016IMG_6916

We stayed very busy playing at home, visiting family, and going places…

IMG_7423IMG_7660IMG_7926 4

36955756_10217967743731186_8014906155455217664_o

We sold our first home and moved to SC!IMG_7949

We couldn’t be happier in Charleston!  Our days are spent at the beach or at our new home…IMG_8866IMG_8896IMG_8922IMG_9321IMG_9666

The area we moved to is a kid (and SAHM) dreamland.  We live in a master planned community… the neighborhoods all have pools, playgrounds, ponds, and bike trails connecting everything that we have access to.  When the kids are older, we will get to ride our bikes (or a golf cart) to school every day!  SO fun, right?IMG_1358IMG_1005IMG_1047IMG_0825IMG_0876IMG_0891IMG_0942IMG_1096

I am so excited to see what the next year brings us.

As you can tell, I love being a SAHM.  I won’t do this for forever but for now it’s perfect for me and it’s perfect for our family! I am going to continue to soak up every minute with my two miracles…IMG_0919

I asked my Instagram SAHM friends if they had anything they’d like to share for this post.  Here are some of their thoughts:

  • “It’s the best job in the world!”
  • “If you can somehow swing it financially, do it! You won’t regret it.”
  • “It’s not all glamorous! Somedays I am so happy and somedays I cry.”
  • “It can be lonely. I miss interacting with people.”
  • “Your kids are only little once. When days are tough, I remind myself that someday I won’t be at home with them. That puts everything in perspective.”
  • “I am a SAHM. That doesn’t mean I am uneducated, I have a PhD.  That doesn’t mean I am lazy, I don’t get lunch breaks. I chose to be this and I’m proud!”
  • “I used to worry about my career potential being wasted but then I realized, the workforce will always be there. My son won’t always be young.”
  • “It’s the best and the hardest job in the world.”
  • “It’s best for our family that I stay a home. I miss my job but my daughters need me.”
  • “You can’t forget about self-care, as a SAHM we usually get put on the backburner.”
  • “Oh my, there is no down time, no lunch. I feel like my days fly by.”
  • “THIS IS NOT A VACATION!”
  • “I worry everyday if I’m doing enough but when I see how well my kids are doing, I know I’m doing plenty.”
  • “The days go SOOOO damn fast and the years even faster.” 
  • “Even though we want to be home with our children, it doesn’t mean we don’t need a break too. Sometimes we want a break and need one.”