Easy steps to a dazzling Hollywood smile

What is it that Cameron Diaz, Halle Berry and Britney Spears all have in common ? Well, a truly dazzling smile, for one thing. An attractive smile communicates warmth, humour, openness, friendliness and self-confidence. For those of us whose smile is maybe not quite so perfect, here are some suggestions for quick and easy ways to achieve a more attractive, glamorous smile.

Teeth and lips are the two major components of a smile, and modern cosmetic products can really help to enhance the appearance of both. Specifically, we’re talking here about dental cosmetics for whiter teeth and cosmetic items that give lips a healthier, more attractively colored and fuller, softer appearance.

Many people are not blessed by nature with sparkling white teeth. But the new generation of teeth whitening products can really help to achieve a whiter shade, safely and gently. The whitening agents (usually Hydrogen Peroxide or Carbamide Peroxide) in these products bleach away stains and discoloration on and in the tooth enamel. Teeth may require a touch up after 6 months or so due to the staining effects of items such as black coffee, red wine and cigarettes.

Do consult with a dentist as to the suitability for teeth whitening products for yourself, especially if you have visible tooth caps (crowns) or fillings which will not bleach. Although it’s really not necessary to let your dentist go to town on your teeth with expensive cosmetic dental treatment, regular visits to your dentist and dental hygienist can help maintain healthy looking teeth and gums. When you brush your teeth, protect your tooth enamel and gums by using a soft tooth-brush, a non-abrasive tooth paste and by brushing gently. Many dentists recommend using an electric tooth brush, as the urge to ‘brush hard’ is decreased. Healthy enamel is a must for white teeth.

Lips are just as important a part of a beautiful smile as are teeth, and there’s really no need to put up with unattractive dry, cracked, colorless or thin lips. A few minutes of care each day is all that’s needed for lips with a healthier, more colorful and fuller look.

For truly healthy looking lips, a good quality lip balm is indispensable. The skin of our lips is particularly thin, delicate and sensitive. Exposure to factors such as UV light in strong sunshine, dry air, wind and cold can soon lead to dry, cracked and peeling lips. An application of lip balm in the morning and evening is a good basis for daily lip care. Much more than a simple waxy coating, todays quality lip balms protect, sooth, moisturize and nourish the lips. Many also make an ideal base on which to apply lip color. For skiing, sailing or beach life, do use a lip balm with a high UV blocking factor.

The most naturally appealing lip colors are shades of pink through to red. Pink tones give a naturally healthy look, whilst red is somewhat more arousing and provocative. Paler shades give thin lips a fuller appearance than darker shades. For extra confidence in your appearance it is well worth investing in smudge free colors that won’t smear upon contact. Lip gloss (or lip shine) products applied over lip color add extra glamour for an evening look. Some lip gloss products even have moisturizing properties to further protect your lips.

There’s no denying that plump, full, pouting lips radiate a glamorous, sensuous appeal. Untill recent years, if you weren’t born with them, then risky (not to mention painful) cosmetic surgery or injections was the only way to get them. These days, however, there’s a whole range of cosmetic ‘lip plumper’ products available which can help to temporarily create fuller, softer lips – safely and painlessly. Lip plumpers come in a range of gels, creams and liquids that are applied directly to the lips. Most work by stimulating production of collagen in the lips. Over a number of days (up to a month) this can create a noticeable increase in lip volume and softness. Lip plumpers often combine other moisturizing and nourishing ingredients.

So now you know the keys to whiter teeth and healthier, more colorful and fuller lips, do explore for yourself which brand name products suit you best. Because choice of cosmetics is such a personal matter, you may want to try sample products first before you buy. You’ll even find free cosmetic samples from top name companies that can be easily ordered over the Internet, just look !

And finally, don’t forget that the very best smiles of all are a projection of the sunny, up-beat, radiant personality inside yourself !