From Malbec to merlot, there’s nothing like kicking back and enjoying a glass (or two) of red wine with friends. But those feel-good vibes can quickly come to an end when you smile into the mirror and realize, “Yikes! My teeth look stained!”. Rather than swearing off reds or drinking your vino through a straw (so not the look you’re going for), you can still raise a glass without the worries of teeth stains. We’ll show you exactly how to do it with these 4 easy – yes, easy! – tips for protecting your teeth from red wine stains.
#1. Prep Before You Indulge
Red wine is a double whammy against our pearly whites because it contains both dark pigmentations and acid. Enamel has tiny pores in it, and drinks that are acidic like red wine erode the enamel and encourage stains to stick.
Fortunately, there are a few key things you can do to “prep your smile” before a night out:
- Pre-wine brush and floss your teeth. Why does this matter? Food particles that cling to the teeth can be highly absorbent, which means (gulp), they’ll take on the color of the wine you’re drinking.
- Pre-wine swish with a teeth-protecting mouthwash. Swishing with a teeth-protecting mouthwash will remove sticky plaque, which is like an acidic glue that invites stain-causing pigments to “join the party.” Mouthwash will also hydrate your smile as it freshens your breath. But keep in mind, to reap those benefits, you’ll need an alcohol-free mouthwash. If you buy that bright-colored bottle with the high alcohol content, it can throw off the pH of your mouth, cause dryness, and ironically, make bad breath worse!
Psst … Save some time in your Internet search and go for the wine enthusiast must-have: Oxyfresh Pro Formula Mouthwash. It’s the ultimate mouthwash protection for your smile because it’s uniquely free of dyes, alcohol, and artificial sweeteners, plus it’s pH balanced and super hydrating! You’ll LOVE the difference!
#2. Say Cheese!
Yes, a reason to eat more cheese! While you’re indulging in your glass of wine, pair it with your favorite hard cheese, like Pecorino Romano, Manchego or gorgonzola. (Is your mouth watering right now too?) The compounds in cheese adhere to the pores in tooth enamel and create a barrier that protects from stains. Cheese also stimulates saliva production, a natural defense against acid because it balances the pH in the mouth.
Can’t tolerate dairy? Go for hard, crunchy veggies instead. They’ll clean your teeth and help keep stains from sticking!
#3. Make H20 Your Best Drinking Buddy
Drinking water will do more than prevent dehydration and the dreaded wine headache – it will also help protect your pearly whites. The longer wine is in contact with your teeth, the greater the chance of stains setting in. For the best stain protection, alternate sips of wine with sips of water (and be sure to swish the water around in your mouth). Water also stimulates saliva flow to combat acid.
#4. Wait At Least 30 Minutes to Brush After Wine Night
Even though most of us were taught to brush our teeth right after meals and having stain-causing drinks, this is actually counterproductive to our smiles. When we drink acidic wine, our enamel is temporarily put into a weakened state. Brushing right away can damage the enamel and expose the dentin underneath, which is yellow in color! Simply wait 30 minutes to brush, and in the meantime, swish with water to prevent red wine stains.
Did you know that exposed dentin can also trigger tooth sensitivity? So can whitening treatments! A protecting tooth gel like Oxyfresh Pro Relief Dental Gel helps soothe that awful tooth sensitivity while improving the health of teeth and gums.
PRO TIP: Trade Out Your Toothpaste
WHOA. Did you know that your toothpaste alone could be yellowing your teeth? So many toothpastes, especially whitening formulas, are way too abrasive. So while they may buff off surface stains, they could be stripping your enamel at the same time. Remember – underneath the enamel is the yellow dentin! (See where your current toothpaste ranks).
Switching to a low-abrasion toothpaste is one of the best things you can do for a brighter smile. Oxyfresh Pro Formula Toothpaste is our favorite option because it’s incredibly low abrasion, has zero dyes, and is formulated with natural mint oil to soothe and hydrate your smile. You’ll be obsessed with the light, refreshing taste too (but please, don’t eat it)!
Did you love these stain-fighting tips? Share them with your favorite wine-drinking friend!