Whitening still the star of oral care category

Today’s consumers are not only more interested in their appearance, they also want more convenience and better-performing products. Heeding the call, manufacturers have developed for 2008 an arsenal of oral care products that tout all-in-one benefits and innovative features that are sure to rival the competition.

“Products that promise to make proper oral care simpler and more convenient have been driving growth in an otherwise stagnant sector,” stated market research provider Euromonitor International in its most recent U.S. oral hygiene report.

According to research by Euromonitor, U.S. retail sales of oral hygiene products are expected to inch up less than 2 percent by 2012 to about $6 billion from $5.9 billion in 2007. Products driving that growth through 2012 include whiteners, toothbrushes and dental rinses.

It is innovation that will help drive the tooth-whitening segment to an estimated $397.8 million, up about 5 percent from $378.8 million in 2007, according to Euromonitor.

One such example is Procter & Gamble, which is launching in March its new Crest Healthy Radiance Toothpaste System. Touted as the “first and only daily paste and weekly strip system,” the system is designed to give consumers healthy and beautiful teeth inside and out.

The system contains daily fluoride Radiant Mint toothpaste and weekly 30-minute session deep-clean strips that can be used instead of a consumer’s current toothpaste. When used together, the system promises to strengthen enamel, fight tartar, remove plaque, prevent cavities and remove stains. The suggested retail price is $11.99.

Also under the Crest brand is the new Crest Whitestrips Daily Whitening Plus Tartar Protection, marking the first time that Crest Whitestrips has stepped beyond a whitener to actually protecting teeth against daily tartar build up.

Looking to appeal to time-crunched beauty shoppers, the new strips, which launch in March, are to be used five minutes every day. Each kit contains 38 days of whitening and has a suggested retail price of $39.99.

Church & Dwight has not only developed new age-defying Toothpaste with patented Liquid Calcium but it has also developed the new Arm & Hammer Whitening Booster, available in April.

The Whitening Booster, which can be squeezed on top of toothpaste, is infused with peroxide gel that, according Church & Dwight, contains two times more whitening agent than the leading whitening strip when used as directed. It also is positioned as a more cost-effective solution compared with whitening strips and trays. It will retail for about $4.99.

While the Whitening Booster can be used atop any toothpaste, Church & Dwight recommends that it be used with its own toothpastes, including the new Arm & Hammer Age-Defying Toothpaste.

Available in April, the new toothpaste features liquid calcium ACP (amorphous calcium phosphate) to strengthen teeth and gums and help de-mineralize enamel and dentin.

Meanwhile, Remedent, a Belgium-based company specializing in oral care and cosmetic dentistry products, stated that it has received an order for its iWhite teeth whitening system from CVS Caremark.

The iWhite product will be available at more than 6,200 CVS locations in April.

The iWhite light activated teeth-whitening kit introduces light technology in a compact mouthpiece, which is powered by a 3-volt battery that pulses the light into whitening foam strips.

Brushing up on brushes

Expected to experience the biggest percentage growth through 2012, according to Euromonitor, are toothbrushes. By 2012, U.S. retail sales of toothbrushes are expected to reach about $1.87 billion, up nearly 10 percent from $1.7 billion in 2007.

Looking to further leverage the power of Gillette brands and the technology of P&G, P&G is launching in March its new Oral-B CrossAction Pro-Health toothbrush.

The toothbrush marks the first in Oral-B’s portfolio that combines three features: CrissCross bristles, gum stimulators and the introduction of a new textured tongue and cheek cleaner.

P&G studies have shown that the new CrossAction Pro-Health toothbrush removes up to 90 percent of plaque in hard-to-reach places, reduces gingivitis in four weeks of use and removes up to 50 percent more plaque along the gumline versus a manual brush. Furthermore, the new brush is positioned as an “all-in-one” solution as it promises to polish away surface stains, remove odor-causing germs on the tongue and stimulate gums. It has a suggested retail price of $4.49.

Church & Dwight, which acquired the SpinBrush brand from P&G in 2005, has developed several new SpinBrushes, including a version to appeal to women.

The new SpinBrush Pro-Women toothbrush offers women a lighter, slimmer battery-powered toothbrush. It features the SpinBrush Pro Whitening head, a whitening bristle system to deliver whiter teeth in 14 days. The suggested retail price is $7.99.

Also new is the SpinBrush Swirl, which features a circular bristle head that oscillates up to 6,000 rotations per minute. The fully disposable brush has a suggested retail of between $3.99 and $4.49.

For children, Church & Dwight has developed a Kids SpinBrush featuring Pikachu, the Pokemon mascot. The brush has a smaller brush head and a three-dimensional handle designed for small hands. In the summer, the company will also debut a Skateboard and Butterfly Kids Spin-Brush. The suggested retail price is $5.99 each.

For those consumers who find brushing on the go inconvenient, Kimberly-Clark has developed DentaBurst Freshening Teeth Cleaners.

Available in mint or cinnamon flavors, the teeth cleaners are individually wrapped and are smaller than a credit card. They are packaged in a 12-pack.

To keep toothbrushes bacteria-free, VIOlight has added the new ZAPi to its line of UV toothbrush sanitizers.

This oval-shaped device that functions to store and sanitize a single toothbrush actually “rocks” without falling over when touched via a non-slip weighted bottom.

ZAPi, which will be in stores in September, uses the same UV germicidal technology found in the company’s other toothbrush sanitizers to kill up to 99.9 percent of bacteria that live on the toothbrush in between brushings.

ZAPi, which is available in four different colors and includes a free color-coordinated toothbrush, has a suggested retail price of $29.95.

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