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PAP Teeth Whitening: How Does It Work, Is It Safe, and What Are the Best Products?

Amanda Dexter
Amanda Dexter
Medically reviewed by
Dr. Sarah Abbas
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Are you in the market for teeth whitening and exploring all your options? Perhaps you've stumbled upon PAP teeth whitening and are curious about what it entails. Unlike the commonly used hydrogen peroxide, PAP teeth whitening is a newer and less known technique.

But don't let its novelty deter you – it's gaining popularity and could be a safe and effective teeth whitening alternative for you. If you're eager to learn more about PAP and its safety, you're not alone.

This article will all answer all your questions about PAP and PAP+ teeth whitening, including:

  • What is PAP teeth whitening? 
  • How does it work?
  • What is the difference between PAP and PAP+ teeth whitening?
  • How does PAP compare to hydrogen peroxide teeth whitening? 
  • What are the best PAP teeth whitening products?

Or if you just want some quick PAP teeth whitening product recommendations, check out the following options. We have more information on each of these later on.

Best PAP Teeth Whitening Products

  • Treatment time: 16 minutes

  • Main whitening ingredient: phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid (PAP)

  • Contains remineralizing hydroxyapatite

  • Treatment time: 30 minutes

  • Contains 14 treatments (28 strips total) 

  • Main whitening ingredient: phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid (PAP)

  • Contains remineralizing nano-hydroxyapatite and desensitising potassium citrate

  • PAP+ whitening formula in powder form

  • Just dip your toothbrush with toothpaste on it to transform any toothpaste into whitening toothpaste

  • Main whitening ingredient: phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid (PAP)

  • Contains remineralizing nano-hydroxyapatite and desensitising potassium citrate

There are a lot of benefits to using PAP teeth whitening products, especially if you’re not too sure about using ones with peroxide as the main ingredient. So let's start with finding out exactly what PAP is and how it works to whiten your teeth. 

teeth-whitening?ref_cca=mango_shake_limited" target="_blank">Get a long-lasting brighter smile with SmileWhite

What is PAP teeth whitening? 

What is PAP teeth whitening and is it safe?

PAP, the abbreviation for phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid, is the main whitening ingredient in some whitening products. Brands such as Hismile and Smile Avenue use PAP or PAP+ as the main ingredient in all their whitening products, including whitening kits, strips and mouthwash. 

It is a non-peroxide whitening agent that has been clinically proven to be just as effective as hydrogen peroxide when it comes to whitening teeth.  

PAP isn’t as widely used as peroxides due to the fact that it is a relatively new concept. More recently though, some companies have created a safe and effective formula to use in their whitening products that are gaining in popularity. 

How does PAP teeth whitening work? 

Although PAP is an alternative ingredient to hydrogen peroxide for whitening teeth, it does work much the same with some key differences. Let's start with how teeth whitening works before diving into how PAP whitens teeth. 

There are two types of whitening: physical and chemical. Physical whitening is the removal of stains on the surface of your teeth through abrasion, and chemical whitening bleaches your teeth on both the surface and removes stains embedded slightly deeper. 

There are three main ingredients that can be used in chemical teeth whitening:

  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Carbamide peroxide
  • Phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid (PAP) 

Each of these ingredients whitens teeth by oxidising stains and lightening the overall tooth colour. They work by entering through the enamel layer and altering and breaking down the molecules that hold colour: the smaller the molecule the lighter the colour. 

The difference between these whitening ingredients is that when peroxides get to work they release free radicals that can damage your teeth and gum tissue. PAP does not release free radicals when it oxidises stains, making it much safer for you to use to whiten your teeth. 

In the following video, Professor Laurie Walsh explains the science behind PAP teeth whitening:

What is the difference between PAP and PAP+?

Smile Avenue and Hismile both use phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid (PAP) whitening, but you may have noticed that Hismile refers to their whitening formula as PAP+. This may sound like they use different active whitening ingredients, but the difference between the two formulae is the other added ingredients.

The + in Hismile's PAP+ formula actually refers to the ingredient nano-hydroxyapatite (Nano-HAp). Both Hismile and Smile Avenue include the ingredient hydroxyapatite (HAp), a naturally occurring form of calcium apatite found in bones, saliva and teeth. HAp helps to remineralise teeth by replacing minerals and strengthening weakened enamel.

Hismile uses a nano-synthetic version which works slightly better because the particles are smaller, and can therefore fill in more damaged areas of enamel. Nano-HAp has been proven to remineralise enamel, specifically initial lesions, at a higher rate than fluoride. 

Hismile’s PAP+ formula also includes Potassium citrate to help with any pre-existing sensitivity you may have prior to whitening your teeth.

So, in short, a PAP+ formula is no more effective at whitening teeth, but it should do a better job of remineralising enamel.

Before/after results with our #1 recommended teeth whitening kit

What are the best PAP teeth whitening products? 

Smile Avenue and Hismile are both brands that have PAP teeth whitening products available. Our top pick is Amile Avenue's whitening kit, but Hismile has a whole range of PAP+ whitening products including whitening strips, powder, and mouthwash and their world-famous V34 Colour Corrector

Smile Avenue Teeth Whitening Kit 

The Smile Avenue Whitening Kit is a popular whitening kit in the UK. It is made in the US but conforms to all EU and UK legislation. The whitening formula in this whitening kit is gentle and peroxide-free and uses PAP as the main active ingredient

phthalimidoperoxycaproic acid
Smile Avenue uses PAP in its teeth whitening gel formula

The kit contains everything you need for a professional whitening experience at home, and you should see results within days. To get results of up to 3 shades or more you just need to use this kit for 16 minutes per day for 10-14 days. 

Smile Avenue's Whitening kit contains:

  • 4 syringes of whitening gel (24-30 applications)
  • A fixed-shape mouth tray with LED lights
  • Adaptors to fit USB, USB Type-C and lightning (iPhone) sockets
  • A shade guide 
  • Instruction manual

To use this whitening kit you paint the PAP whitening gel directly onto your teeth and then connect the mouthpiece to your phone and wait for 16 minutes. Then just wash off the gel and try not to swallow any! 

Even though PAP is not known to damage your gum tissue, painting it directly onto your teeth ensures you don't get any on your gums. The built-in LED lights mean that you get greater coverage than other kits that use exterior lights. 

PAP whitening strips
Hismile's PAP+ Whitening Strips

Hismile PAP+ Whitening Strips 

These whitening strips work just like other types of whitening strips except they use Hismile’s PAP+ formula. This means that you get the same remineralising and desensitising benefits as you do when you use the whitening kit. 

While you won’t get quite the same results as you do when using the whitening kit, they are a quick and convenient way to whiten your teeth on the go. 

Unlike other types of strips, you won’t have to suffer through sensitive teeth after you have used them, and your teeth may even feel less sensitive after whitening

Hismile's Teeth Whitening Powder

Hismile PAP+ Whitening Powder 

Hismile’s Whitening Powder is one of their newer whitening products to become available. It includes all of the benefits of their PAP+ teeth whitening formula in powder form. All you have to do is apply your regular toothpaste to your toothbrush, and dip it in the whitening powder. 

Then just brush your teeth, as you normally would. The whitening powder turns your regular toothpaste into a whitening toothpaste without you having to change from your favourite brand of toothpaste. You can read more about teeth-whitening powder in our guide here.


PAP teeth whitening is a safe and effective way to whiten your teeth without causing the damage that you sometimes get with peroxide products. 

Smile Avenue have a whitening kit that use phthalimidoperoxy caproic acid (PAP) as the main ingredient. They also include other ingredients to help remineralise, desensitise and strengthen your teeth. Hismile has a full range of PAP+ whitening products including whitening kits, strips, powder, and mouthwash

The PAP+ formula is slightly different from PAP because it includes the ingredient nano-hydroxyapatite. This is a nano-synthetic version that has smaller particles to help remineralise your teeth enamel more effectively. 

Our top recommendation for PAP teeth whitening are Smile Avenue's Whitening Kit. Another brand you might want to check out is the SmileTime teeth whitening kit. But for general whitening maintenance or for fast and convenient whitening, check out Hismile's full range of PAP+ whitening products.


What is PAP teeth whitening?

PAP teeth whitening is a revolutionary teeth whitening treatment that utilises a unique formula containing a natural compound known as phthalimido peroxy caproic acid (PAP) to whiten teeth.

How does PAP teeth whitening work?

PAP is a chemical compound used in teeth whitening that causes oxidation on teeth, breaking down surface stains and reducing their hue. The breakdown of these stains results in a whiter smile.

Is PAP teeth whitening safe?

Yes, PAP teeth whitening is considered safe and effective for teeth whitening. The natural PAP compound used in the gel doesn't damage teeth or gums. Follow instructions to avoid side effects.

How long does it take to see results with PAP teeth whitening?

PAP teeth whitening results may vary based on discolouration and product. Visible effects can be seen after a few uses, while optimal results require 1-2 weeks of use.

Can PAP teeth whitening be used on sensitive teeth?

Yes, PAP teeth whitening is safe to use on sensitive teeth. However, it is important to choose a product specifically designed for sensitive teeth and to follow the instructions carefully.

How long do the results of PAP teeth whitening last?

PAP teeth whitening results can last 6 months to 2 years. It varies based on the frequency of touch-ups, oral hygiene practices and lifestyle habits of the individual.

Best Teeth Whitening Kits 2023

  • Designed & developed by UK dentists

  • FDA approved

  • Includes 2 FREE visits at your local SmileWhite dentist

  • 3 Year Guaranteed Results

  • Use code DENTALY5OFF to save an additional 5%!

"Best Professional Teeth Whitening with long-lasting results."


  • Made in the USA

  • 24-30 days of treatment included

  • Reusable components and affordable refills available

  • Ingredients to remineralize teeth and prevent sensitivity

  • 30 day money-back guarantee

  • Free shipping and 10% off with code DENTA10

"Best affordable At-Home Whitening Kit."


PAP Teeth Whitening: How Does It Work, Is It Safe, and What Are the Best Products?
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