People Are Using Mr. Clean Magic Eraser to Whiten Their Teeth

The latest and strangest trend in DIY teeth whitening involves rubbing your not-so-pearly whites with pieces of Mr. Clean Magic Erasers for some surprisingly impressive results.

When it comes to removing grime and leaving surfaces looking shiny, Mr. Clean is an established solution, but until recently most of the world had no idea that it could also be used on teeth. Last month, news reports of viral TikTok videos promoting Mr. Clean Magic Eraser as an effective and cheap way of whitening your teeth in the comfort of your own home went viral, attracting mixed responses from both the general public and dentists.

Photo: Rafael Rocha/Unsplash

According to KUTV, the unusual teeth whitening trend was kickstarted by a TikTok user called “theheatherdunn”, who claimed the big secret to having healthy, white teeth that dentists always compliment her on is using Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. In a clip that has gotten over 255,000 likes and over 2,500 comments, Heather shows how she uses a piece of Magic Eraser to rub her teeth without touching her gums.

“Number three, and here is where we all gasp. This is a Magic Eraser. Yeah, that’s what I said. I take a little, tiny piece of it and wet it, don’t touch your gums… I’ve been doing it for, like, two years,” the TikToker says. “Yes, I am prepared for all the dentists that are going to come on here and be like, ‘don’t do it, she’s crazy!’ I don’t care. I go to the dentist, and I don’t tell them what I do, but they’re like, ‘you have the healthiest, strongest, cleanest teeth,’ and I’m like, ‘why, thank you.'”

Some dentists did come out to discourage people from following Heather Dunn’s example, warning that Magic Erasers are basically melanin sponges, which act like very fine sandpaper that can potentially ruin the enamel on your teeth.

“Excuse me is that a Magic Eraser? Like, she’s afraid of fluoride but she’s cool with using a Magic Eraser on her teeth. A Magic Eraser is actually made of melanine foam. It’s basically foam that’s hard as glass and acts as a really abrasive sandpaper, meaning, yeah, your teeth are white because you scrubbed all the enamel off. So, in fact, no, don’t do this,” Dr. Benjamin Winters, an orthodontist from Plano, Texas responded on YouTube.

The Mr. Clean Magic Eraser box clearly warns users not to use the product “on the skin or other parts of the body”, and the list of ingredients, according to the product’s U.S. patent, includes melamine, sodium sulfurous acid and formaldehyde, of which the latter two are the most worrying. So maybe rubbing your teeth with Magic Eraser isn’t the smartest thing to do.

But there’s a plot twist. Although rubbing your teeth with fine sandpaper sounds like a terrible idea, there is actually some research that actually suggests it works. A 2015 study found that melamine foam proved an effective tooth stain-removal tool, with only minimal scratching, and another study, from 2013, found it to be more effective than brushing in removing stains off of artificial teeth.


As dumb as this trend sounds, it’s nothing compared to the Tide pod challenge from a few years ago…

Posted in News        Tags: , , , , ,