Do you rely on a cup of coffee — or two…or three — to get you going each morning? Pair red wine with dinner a few times a week? If so, those choices could be showing up on your teeth!
Whether it’s from our beverage choices, genetics, or aging, most of us experience teeth yellowing at some point, but we don’t have to live with it forever. At-home whitening kits like GLO Brilliant lift stains out of your teeth so you can smile with confidence. In this review, we’ll outline the pros and cons of GLO Brilliant to help you decide if it’s the right solution for you.
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GLO Brilliant at a Glance
GLO Brilliant takes its name from the lights in its brightness-boosting wearable device. Guided Light Optics (GLO) combine the wavelengths of LED light with heat, accelerating and deepening the whitening process. This kit was developed by leading cosmetic dentist Dr. Jonathan B. Levine for GLO Science as a scaled-down version of the whitening systems the company sells to professional dentists.
GLO Brilliant is the only widely available at-home whitening product that uses guided light optics technology. But this isn’t the only thing that sets it apart. It has also received two Edison Awards for excellence in product development.
Plus, their gel is vegan, gluten-free, cruelty-free, and designed to reduce tooth sensitivity, which is a common side effect of whitening products.
GLO Brilliant whitens your teeth over five to ten days, with four 8-minute-long whitening sessions each day, which you can do consecutively. The GLO Brilliant light features a built-in timer, ensuring you don’t go over the time limit with each session. All the vials of the whitening agent are pre-measured as well, which makes using the system a breeze.
You can purchase GLO Brilliant on the company’s website, through many major online retailers, and even through your dentist’s office. However, some buyers report that purchasing through third-party websites sometimes resulted in receiving expired gel or lights with nonfunctional batteries, so you might want to stick to ordering from GLO Science directly.
Pros & Cons of GLO Brilliant
We’re big fans of GLO Brilliant. In fact, it is our top choice for LED-enhanced teeth whitening at home and our favorite DIY teeth whitening kit overall. Still, it isn’t perfect. Here are the biggest advantages and drawbacks to using GLO Brilliant to enhance your smile.
Pros of GLO Brilliant
- The light is designed to last for years, so in the future, you only need to repurchase the whitening solution.
- Since their device combines heat with LED lights, the whitening process is faster.
- Their whitening solution is vegan, gluten-free, and cruelty-free, so it works for almost every customer.
- Backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee and limited warranty when purchased through GLO Science.
Cons of GLO Brilliant
- Four applications each day can be less convenient than a single application, which is what most other products require.
- The light’s battery tends to run out quickly, so you may need to charge it every day.
GLO Brilliant Effectiveness
If a teeth whitening product doesn’t actually brighten your smile, then what’s the point in using it? As you would imagine, some products get teeth whiter than others.
GLO Brilliant performs incredibly well; in a clinical trial the average improvement was five shades in five days.
The company says that GLO Brilliant has been proven effective in clinical settings — and they’ve backed up their claim. This isn’t shocking when you consider that GLO Brilliant takes the technology behind GLO Science’s in-office treatments and makes it pocket-sized. The wearable device has ten LEDs whose light is the right wavelength for accelerating the whitening process.
Combined with a warming effect, this device may accelerate the process and help the whitening agent penetrate deeper into the teeth.
Some studies suggest that heat can help whitening agents work faster. And this heat allows GLO Brilliant to work with lower whitening gel concentrations, making it a great option for people with sensitive teeth.
All of this is great, but there is also the question of how quickly it works and how long those results last. Good news: GLO Science says their initial results are visible after a single day of treatment (four eight-minute sessions). Most people achieve maximum results in five days, though people with particularly dark stains should consider a ten-day course of treatment.
To keep your bright new smile bright, the company suggests that users complete a maintenance treatment once per month (one set of four eight-minute sessions), and if you drink coffee or other staining beverages, complete a five-day course of treatment every six months.
GLO Brilliant Affordability
One of the main advantages to home whitening kits is their comparative affordability to traditional in-office whitening treatments. However, at first glance, GLO Brilliant may not look as affordable as some of its home whitening competitors.
GLO Brilliant’s sticker price is $199.
That’s one of the highest home whitening kit prices on the market, but GLO Brilliant makes their price tag more approachable through financing. If you buy your kit through their website, you can finance your purchase with AfterPay. Instead of paying everything at once, this allows you to pay in four interest-free installments of $49.75.
If purchased through GLO Science directly, your kit comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee and a year-long limited warranty.
Your GLO Brilliant kit includes an LED Whitening Mouthpiece.
This little wearable device brings the technology of in-office whitening to your home, representing incredible value. Each kit contains enough whitening agent for two complete five-day treatments. But GLO Brilliant doesn’t stop there. The kit also includes a mouthpiece storage case, a rechargeable remote, a hands-free lanyard for the light device, lip balm, a universal power cord, and a zippered travel case for all the accessories.
The LED Whitening Mouthpiece is reusable, so if you’d like to keep whitening your smile in the future, you’d only need to purchase their inexpensive whitening gel vials (as opposed to buying another complete kit).
Although their price tag is steeper than some of their competitors, GLO Brilliant offers a great deal of value for people looking to keep their smiles white in the long term.
Quality of GLO Brilliant Ingredients
Most teeth whitening products use some type of peroxide — typically hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide — as their primary whitening agent.
GLO Brilliant is no different. They use 6% hydrogen peroxide supported by distilled water, polyethylene glycol, potassium nitrate, glycerin, edetate disodium, sodium saccharin, sodium fluoride, sodium hydroxide, and flavor.
All of these ingredients are vegan and gluten-free.
However, it’s worth noting that the GLO Nourishing Lip Care included in the kit contains beeswax. So although the whitening gel is vegan, this element is not. According to a GLO rep, petroleum jelly can be used as a substitute.
The only difference between the GLO Brilliant gel and the gel used in their professional treatments is the percentage of hydrogen peroxide (24-30% for the professional treatments vs. 6% here). This helps to ensure that the product is safe to use without doctor supervision and unlikely to cause tooth sensitivity.
GLO’s percentage of hydrogen peroxide is slightly lower than some other at-home whitening options.
Home kits can have over 10% of hydrogen peroxide concentration, so GLO’s formula is less potent than many of their competitors. Still, research suggests that hydrogen peroxide is still effective at lower concentrations, and GLO Brilliant’s light and heat can help too.
GLO Brilliant Convenience
Busy adults aren’t looking for complicated treatments that require a lot of time or have a steep learning curve. And we will be honest — this is a category where GLO Brilliant falls short compared to the competition.
Before you get started, you need to charge the GLO control, which powers the mouthpiece (a full charge takes about four hours). Once charged, you’ll plug the mouthpiece into the side of the control.
Next up is applying GLO Lip Care to the inside and outside of your lips. This helps prevent drying, a common side effect of LED teeth whitening devices. Then, open a GLO Vial and squeeze a drop (about half the size of a pea) onto the brush tip and brush it onto the front surfaces of your teeth.
After applying the gel, put the mouthpiece into your mouth and turn on the control, illuminating the LED lights and starting the device’s heat.
Here is where things can get slightly inconvenient.
After eight minutes, the light will turn off. You will then need to remove it, reapply the gel, and put the light back in for another eight minutes.
Repeat this process two more times. It’s a total of 32 minutes, and the reapplication can be annoying when compared to other products that require just one application per day.
In other ways, however, GLO Brilliant offers more convenience than other options. It comes with a case for the mouthpiece and a carrying case that fits the entire kit, making it easy to transport or store at home.
The system itself is meant to be used while walking around and going about your life, with the lanyard making the control hands free.
The GLO app will even remind you when it’s time to apply a treatment. And you only need to wait 20 minutes after finishing your treatment to eat, drink, brush, and floss — about ten minutes less than most kits.
GLO Brilliant Comfort
Whether you are sporting gooey strips on your teeth or wearing big trays, teeth whitening can be an awkward process. And while GLO Brilliant is no exception, don’t expect each whitening session to be eight minutes of torture. Their whitening gel can actually be fairly comfortable.
GLO Brilliant doesn’t cause sensitivity, which means that even well after you finish treatment, it’s more comfortable than many competitors.
It also comes in a nice mint flavor, helping to mask the taste of the peroxide. Still, the gel isn’t perfect. Many people note that between the treatment and brushing their teeth, it can make their teeth feel strange.
Then there’s the mouthpiece itself. Like most LED whitening lights, it’s slightly bulky and somewhat uncomfortable. Luckily, you get a break from it every eight minutes and only need to wear it for a total of 32 minutes per day.
Overall, the discomfort associated with GLO Brilliant isn’t any worse than similar treatments from other companies, and in some aspects, it is even more comfortable.
What Are GLO Brilliant Customers Saying?
Overall, GLO Brilliant customers are thrilled with their results. Most customers report seeing a difference in their teeth after just one to two days and say their smile is significantly whiter after the full five days.
Customers with sensitive teeth and gums especially love the GLO Brilliant system. Multiple customers shared that while they had extreme sensitivity after whitening with other DIY kits, they had no pain at all after using GLO Brilliant.
The biggest complaint about GLO Brilliant is its price, but customers often say it’s still a great value. Specifically, they love how it can achieve significant results without the cost of purchasing a whitening kit from a dentist or brightening their smile in-office.
If a brighter, whiter smile is your goal, GLO Brilliant can get you there. It takes GLO Science professional whitening technology and repackages it for safe and easy to use at home. Although the price might seem a little steep at first, it’s still a decent value, especially because you can reuse the light for years to come.
But is it the perfect fit for you? You won’t know until you check out the competition. Visit our review of the 9 best at-home teeth whitening products to compare your options.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is GLO Brilliant different from GLO Science’s GLO Lit product?
Yes, though not by much. Both use a device that combines light with heat to accelerate whitening, and the gel in both kits is identical. The difference is in the power pack. The one that comes with GLO Lit interacts with the GLO app more and charges a little faster. Since these aren’t features we feel make a significant difference in the user experience, we prefer the GLO Brilliant.
What does heat do that LED lights can’t accomplish on their own?
The application of heat may help accelerate the whitening process. Just like changing your hair color, heat can help the bleaching agent penetrate deeper and faster.
Does the LED light actually make a difference or is it more of a gimmick?
According to some research, it does make a difference. However, it isn’t as powerful as the lights typically used at a dental office.
Is it really safe to whiten your teeth at home?
At-home whitening treatments have been in use for decades and are typically considered safe. However, there are caveats.
- Only purchase reputable products.
- Use your whitening kits exactly as directed.
- Avoid whitening your teeth if you are contraindicated to do so — for example, if you have cavities, gum disease, tooth decay, or other health concerns.
Should I get a dental cleaning before whitening my teeth?
Yes. Teeth whitening is best when your teeth are free of plaque and tartar. If you don’t get this removed before whitening, your teeth will look splotchy after your next cleaning.
Why are my teeth not as bright as they used to be?
Discoloration occurs naturally due to age as the enamel thins, allowing the yellow dentin of the teeth to show through. Additionally, medications, foods, and beverages can all discolor the teeth.
Can I whiten my teeth if I have a fixed appliance like braces or a retainer?
If the appliance is fixed to the front of the teeth, it is not a good idea. The whitening agent cannot lift stains below the appliance, so you would be left with the shadow of your braces on your teeth after they are removed. If your appliance is on the back side of the teeth, it is up to you. The same shadow will be present, but no one would ever see it.
Is it safe to whiten your teeth when pregnant or breastfeeding?
There is not a lot of research on this. So, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding and want to whiten your smile, speak with your gynecologist or child’s pediatrician for advice.
Can I whiten caps, crowns, fillings, and veneers?
You can remove surface stains from cosmetic and restorative dental work. However, teeth whitening kits cannot alter the original color.
Can I get my teeth whiter faster if I use my kit more often than the directions state?
It’s not advisable. Doing this can damage the enamel and put you at greater risk for developing whitening-related sensitivity.