Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D

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A Flash of Lightening: Glo Brilliant Personal Teeth Whitening Device
A smile-brightening gadget.

When I noticed, one overcast Saturday morning, that the luster of my teeth had likewise dimmed, it seemed the right moment to try the Glo Brilliant Personal Teeth Whitening Device ($275; Along with a hydrogen peroxide gel, it uses a mouthpiece (which is hooked up to a control you can wear around your neck) that combines heat and light to hasten the whitening process. Warning: After you charge the device but before you paint your teeth with the gel and chomp on the plastic mouthpiece, clear the room of animals and small children, who might be permanently scarred by the sight of your contorted, eerily glowing mouth. I almost scared myself. But it was worth it. I did four applications of the gel followed by eight minutes of the heat and light (total 32 minutes) three days in a row. And if my smile wasn't quite as dazzling as a summer sunrise, it was bright enough to light up the room when my son and daughter-in-law dropped by for an unexpected visit. —Valerie Monroe