Your smile can be your most showstopping feature. Even so, when it comes to beauty care, many people skip over it in favor of beauty blenders, highlighter kits, and hair products. But what if instead of selecting a lip shade that makes your teeth pop, you sported a bright smile from the start?
This is the drive behind the MOON line collaboration with Kendall Jenner. Once upon a time, even Kendall Jenner lacked confidence in her smile. So she helped launch the MOON Teeth Whitening Pen, aiming to make oral beauty part of everyone’s routine. Let’s find out if it delivers on its promises.
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MOON Teeth Whitening Pen at a Glance
Although Jenner is the face of the MOON whitening pen, MOON was actually founded by Shaun Neff, whose goal is to transform the oral care experience from just another item on your daily to-do list into an act of self-care. It’s all about better design, better ingredients, and a better experience overall.
The Kendall/Neff partnership aims to reframe oral care as oral beauty. Just like you might keep lipstick or hair supplies in your bag for a midday refresher, they want you to have your MOON pen on hand. A bright smile just becomes part of your polished look. According to the company, you can notice a difference after just one application, and you’ll get lasting results after two weeks of consistent use.
The MOON doesn’t want oral care to be boring. Their packaging is sleek, their formulas contain essential oils, and the whole experience is designed to make you feel like you are pampering yourself, not engaging in a chore. You can purchase the pen online through their virtual store and Amazon or as part of a beauty-centric shopping day at Ulta.
Pros & Cons of the MOON Whitening Pen
The MOON Teeth Whitening Pen isn’t just another celeb-backed gimmicky product; it gets the job done. Still, not everything about this product is perfect. Here are the biggest pros and cons to be aware of.
- The sleek design makes it an item you aren’t afraid to display or use in front of others.
- The flavor profile completely masks the taste of peroxide.
- It delivers fast results. Some customers even said they noticed a difference after the first application.
- The formula is designed to reduce tooth sensitivity.
- You can only buy it in person at Ulta.
- The gel can burn if it gets on your gums.
When oral care becomes beauty care, you have high expectations for your products. They need to make you feel pampered, offer a certain elegance, and easily fit into your existing routine. However, more than anything, they need to get the job done.
MOON claims that you can see results within 30 seconds of your first application. That is a bold claim, but it is one that customers frequently back up in their reviews. Is this even possible?
Not exactly. Even when using plain old hydrogen peroxide to whiten your smile, you need to keep it in contact with the teeth for about two minutes to see a difference, and the MOON formula includes a lot of other ingredients that ultimately curb peroxide’s power. This probably leaves you wondering why so many people, and MOON itself, claim that you can see a difference so quickly.
It isn’t just the placebo effect of purchasing a Kendall Jenner product; depending on which version of their pen you buy, the formula contains light-reflecting pigments. This gives the appearance of an instant smile transformation, even if it isn’t a lasting effect. But that doesn’t mean the pen won’t make meaningful changes; it just takes more than 30 seconds.
To see long-term effects, you need to use the product twice a day for two weeks. You also need to try to keep your lips out of contact with your teeth for about a minute after application. This gives the peroxide in the formula enough contact with the teeth to make a difference.
As for how big of a difference it makes, this seems to vary significantly between customers. While some claim they didn’t see any improvement, most state they have a whiter smile. Some find that they have a Hollywood smile after two weeks, while others claim the difference is more subtle.
This could be due to teeth-staining habits like drinking coffee or smoking cigarettes. The MOON Whitening Pen product page says you should cut out teeth-staining substances while completing treatment, or it could hinder your results. Either way, the pen does seem to be effective, even if the results aren’t as predictable as we might like.
From lip kits to swimsuits, Kylie and Kendall have been blowing up the internet with their endorsements for years now. There are plenty of reasons why Jenner products go viral, but affordability isn’t one of them. Well, get ready for a surprise: the MOON Teeth Whitening Pen is highly affordable.
Each pen costs just $19.99. This isn’t the lowest price tag you’ll find for a whitening pen. However, to understand the value it offers, you need to break down that cost per whitening session. According to MOON, each pen gives you 30-40 applications, depending on how heavily you apply the gel. On the pricier end of the spectrum, that breaks down to $0.66 per application, and on the more affordable end, just $0.50 per whitening session.
Let’s compare this to another viral teeth whitening pen: SNOW. With this kit, you get an LED light for enhancing the whitening process in addition to the pen. The cost breaks down to $2 per whitening session, which is pricey for a pen, but given the enhanced effects, you might feel it represents a better value.
Yet out of all the whitening pens we reviewed, MOON is the most affordable. Colgate Optic White Overnight Teeth Whitening Pen comes the closest with a $24.99 price tag and a per-application cost of $0.71. The Philips Zoom Whitening Pen isn’t far off either, costing $0.77 per application, and Lumineux comes in at a hefty $1.25 per application.
Keep in mind that how many applications you get per pen depends on how much gel you apply. The company recommends about three clicks to get all the gel you need.
Quality of Ingredients
Every whitening pen needs a whitening agent — typically either hydrogen or carbamide peroxide. MOON uses hydrogen peroxide, which is the more powerful of the two.
We reached out to MOON to find out the concentration of peroxide in their formula, as this determines the gel’s power. We got two different answers. One claimed the peroxide concentration was 3%, which is pretty standard for whitening pens. The other stated the concentration is 10% — higher than what you typically find in any over-the-counter whitening products.
Of course, there is more to the formula than the active ingredient. And the MOON Teeth Whitening Pen’s inactive ingredients play as big of a role as the peroxide, giving it the flavor and sparkle that have so many people making it their whitening pen of choice. Here are all the ingredients in the MOON Teeth Whitening Pen.
- Urea Peroxide: This is just a fancier name for hydrogen peroxide, the active whitening agent.
- Propylene Glycol: This helps keep the gel in liquid form and dissolve the other ingredients.
- Glycerin: Used to speed up the dehydration of your enamel, helping the peroxide get deeper into the teeth to lift out stains.
- Tris(hydroxymethyl)aminomethane: This ingredient is meant to reduce tooth sensitivity triggered by peroxide.
- Carbomer: This is an adhesive agent. It helps the gel hold firm on the teeth rather than sliding off.
- Tetrasodium EDTA: This helps enhance absorption, allowing the gel to get into the pores of the teeth faster.
- Organic Stevia Rebaudiana Extract: This sweetens the gel to make it taste more pleasant.
- Mica (Violet): This gives the gel a slight shimmer, which makes your teeth appear instantly brighter.
- Titanium Dioxide: Used to accelerate oxidation, this allows the formula to make a bigger impact in minimal time.
- Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract: This plays a big role in MOON’s great flavor.
- Fragaria Ananassa (Strawberry) Fruit Extract: Combines with the honeysuckle extract to create a great-tasting whitening gel.
- Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil: Lavender oil is used for both flavor and fragrance.
- Flavor: Finally, there is an unnamed flavor, though based on their marketing materials, it is vanilla.
Whitening your teeth will always demand some effort on your part. That said, whitening pens are perhaps the most convenient method. They don’t require you to keep trays or strips in place, and you don’t need to measure out gel. You just prep your teeth, click or twist the pen, apply the gel, and you’re done.
Prepping your teeth is pretty simple. Just brush, floss, and dry your teeth. Use a fluoride-free toothpaste for this step since fluoride coats the teeth and prevents the peroxide from working. After brushing, you can use a washcloth or paper towel, but many people just suck in air through their teeth until surface moisture is eliminated.
Once your teeth are dry, keep your lips off of them by smiling. Click the button on the pen until enough gel is visible for whitening your teeth. The first time you use the pen, this can take 15-20 clicks. From then on, it should be about three.
To apply the gel, start at the gumline and brush towards the edge of each tooth. This helps to keep it off the gums and prevents chemical burns. Use the brush to get into the crevices of the teeth for even results. Once you’ve coated all your visible teeth with the gel, keep your lips pulled back for another 60 seconds, then wait about 30 minutes before eating or drinking. Overall, using the MOON Teeth Whitening Pen is pretty convenient.
Whitening your teeth can be a little awkward. The good news is that whitening pens tend to remove the most uncomfortable aspects of the process — you don’t wear bulky trays and you don’t need a sticky strip in your mouth. However, three aspects of discomfort remain: sensitivity, flavor, and texture.
The MOON Teeth Whitening Pen doesn’t typically cause tooth sensitivity. While the hydrogen peroxide in the formula can cause discomfort, the tris(hydroxymethyl)aminomethane combats it. The exception is if you get the gel on your gums. According to customers, not only does this burn the gums, but the burning happens pretty much instantly — there is no room for application errors.
Flavor is where MOON Teeth Whitening Pen truly excels. The formula includes the Elixir III, which is a blend curated by Kendall Jenner herself. It includes lavender oil, strawberry extract, and honeysuckle flower extract, which all come together to make a pretty great-tasting gel.
As for texture, the MOON gel is pretty smooth and doesn’t harden into a film, so there isn’t anything awkward about it. Overall, it delivers a comfortable whitening pen experience.
What Are Customers Saying?
Overall, MOON Teeth Whitening Pen customers are happy with the product and the results it delivers. Most people note that it whitens their teeth by multiple shades, tastes great, and doesn’t cause sensitivity.
We noticed, however, that most of the glowing reviews were from people who use the full MOON oral care line. We aren’t sure if this indicates that the pen works best when used with their products or just that the users are big fans.
Not everyone loves the MOON Teeth Whitening Pen though. Most complaints are related to packaging errors, such as the pen arriving dried out or the gel leaking into the box. However, some did note that the whitening effect was only temporary, lasting a few hours until the light-reflecting mica washed away.
MOON’s Teeth Whitening Pen is more than just a celeb-endorsed product. It is an effective whitening pen with great flavor backed by the know-how of MOON. Affordable and attractive, it is ideal for taking on the go, keeping your smile looking its best throughout the day.
Of course, MOON isn’t the only whitening pen on the market. To learn about your other options, check out our review of the 5 best whitening pens below.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the main reasons to use whitening pens instead of strips or trays?
The primary advantages of using whitening pens are:
- Greater application control, avoiding the gums.
- A highly portable design.
- A controlled system for dispersing the gel.
- You can target just a few teeth.
Are there any tricks to keeping my lips off my teeth until the gel dries?
Most people just smile wide, but this doesn’t work for everyone. A simple hack is to use cotton balls under the lips and over the gums.
Isn’t it risky to whiten your teeth yourself?
If you go fully DIY, it can be. But if you are purchasing an over-the-counter product rather than whipping up your own formula, you should be just fine. To make the experience as safe as it can be, we suggest the following:
- Only purchase authentic products. Some websites sell MOON knock-offs, so be careful.
- Read the instructions carefully and follow them exactly.
- Check the ingredients list and make sure you aren’t allergic to anything in the formula.
Aren’t whitening pens just for maintenance between more comprehensive treatments?
Not always. SNOW is a comprehensive treatment and it uses whitening pens as the applicator. The Philips Zoom Whitening Pen doesn’t include any extras, but it is still designed to offer complete whitening.
My teeth used to be bright white. Why are they duller now?
Our teeth go through a lot. Some things that can change their color include:
- Drinking pigmented beverages.
- Eating pigmented foods.
- Enamel loss from dental work, aging, and injury.
Do whitening pens reduce all types of stains?
No. Some stains are the wrong color; for example, whitening pens have trouble with brown stains. Also, some stains simply cannot be corrected. Enamel loss that allows the dentin to show through can only be covered, not lightened. The same is true for antibiotic staining.
Is it safe to whiten your teeth while wearing braces?
It isn’t dangerous, but it also isn’t a good idea. Whitening gel can’t get underneath braces’ brackets, so it will brighten your teeth unevenly. If you have removable appliances, like aligners, then whitening your teeth should be fine, but check with your doctor first.
Will whitening pens change the color of restorative dentistry?
They can remove surface stains but they will not alter the original color of caps, crowns, or veneers.
If I use my whitening pen more often than the directions say I should, will I damage my teeth?
You might. Too much peroxide can harm the enamel. It is best to stick with the instructions when using a whitening pen.