It's not that I want Sofia's whole body -- I just want her best feature. You know what I'm talking about. They are rounded just right, and line up perfectly. Plus, unlike so many other celebs out there, hers aren't too big or too small -- they're just the right manageable size.
Wouldn't you agree Sofia's most beautiful feature is her teeth? (C'mon, what did you think I was talking about?!)
Well, even if they're not what you're obsessed with, her teeth are the one feature I can actually, feasibly, copy. And I found a way to get her sterling white smile without coughing up three months' rent. I talked to the best and the brightest (pun intended) dentists across the country to find out how to avoid all the surprising things ruining my smile. And they shared genius tips on how to whiten my teeth without sitting in a dentist's chair. Check out their tips and get your Sofia Vergara-worthy smile in just 30 days.
Monday: Skip the bananas
"Most people snack on carbohydrate-rich foods, like chips, which are especially bad for our teeth," says Pankaj J. Singh, DDS, founder and CEO of Arch Dental Associates in New York City. "All carbohydrates eventually break down into simple sugars, which are converted by the bacteria in your mouth into plaque -- the primary trigger of gum disease and cavities," he says. The biggest plaque culprit on Singh's list? Bananas. Their "chewy, adhesive texture" makes it easier for them to get caught between teeth or under the gum line, where bacteria can accumulate.
Tuesday: Swap those bananas for strawberries
Who has time to brush their teeth after every meal? Irwin Smigel, DDS, creator of SuperSmile, recommends eating strawberries for dessert. They have a high percentage of folic acid, which Smigel says naturally exfoliates and cleans your teeth.
Wednesday: Order the pinot noir -- not the pinot grigio
We all know the big culprits when it comes to staining: coffee, tea, soda, and red wine. But did you know it's not their dark colors that cause staining, but their high level of acidity? In fact, Smigel says white wine is generally much more acidic than red and can erode the enamel on your teeth, leaving them vulnerable to staining.
Thursday: Ease up on the condiments
Mustard, ketchup, soy sauce -- these condiments all have high levels of acid and can leave your teeth susceptible to stains. This doesn't mean you need to order your burger sans the special sauce, but remember to rinse your mouth with water after eating.
Friday: Suck on a lemon
Just as they naturally highlight hair, lemons can lighten and brighten teeth. Just make sure to not overdo it -- lemons have high acidity, which can be damaging, says Steven E. Roth, DMD, of SmilesNY in New York City.
Monday: Re-think your birth control
Oral contraceptives may help prevent an unwanted pregnancy, but the Pill also tricks your body into thinking it's pregnant, causing hormonal changes that may make you more susceptible to periodontal disease, says Nicholas Toscano, DDS, a periodontist in New York City. If you must take the Pill, Toscano recommends seeing your dentist every three months for cleaning, as opposed to the normal six-month interval.
Tuesday: Pack a toothbrush with your bikini
Swimming in pool water that is excessively chlorinated can erode and stain tooth enamel, says Singh. "Excessive chlorine lowers the pool's pH level, making it dangerously acidic." So if you're a frequent swimmer, pack a toothbrush along with your towel. "Brushing your teeth and using a fluoride rinse immediately after swimming will help," he says.
Related: 8 Quick Ways to Whiten Your Teeth
Wednesday: Buy a mouth guard
If you wake up with a sore jaw, you may be clenching your jaw at night. "The force generated by this habit can be really destructive," says New York City-based dentist, Laura Torrado, DDS. "Protective mouth wear is really a must," she says.
Thursday: Steer clear of diet pills
Popping pills for a thinner waistline may be destructive to your teeth, says Singh. "Certain diet pills contain chemicals that cause a decreased salivary flow, which results in a higher risk of tooth decay and oral problems," he says. Saliva naturally removes the food particles in your mouth that cause decay, and helps neutralize acid levels. High acidity can "thin the enamel, making the teeth appear darker, not to mention more brittle and prone to chipping and cracking."
Friday: Use a retinoid
Your lips are a big factor when it comes to having a great smile. As you age, the collagen around your lips starts to break down, causing your lips to thin and the corners of your mouth to droop, says Singh. While lip injections can successfully plump and shape thin lips, over-injecting your lips can cause the dreaded "duck lips." Use retinoids in your night cream instead to help boost collagen production.
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