At the risk of being bombarded by dissenting opinions and angry toothpaste companies, I thought I would share with you a small nugget of beauty wisdom. My advice is this: don't use whitening toothpaste. It makes you break out.

Scientific it's not; observed it is. And I'm not the only one who has found this to be true. Lots of my friends have asked me over the years for skin-clearing advice, and my first question to them is, "Well, do you use whitening toothpaste?" If they say, "no" I just shrug and suggest a more gentle cleanser. If they say "yes," I suggest that they give it up for a few weeks to see what happens. If they nix the whiteners, invariably the breakouts follow suit.

Lots of people worry that switching to regular toothpaste will make their teeth look dull and old. I suppose that is a possibility, but if you brush well and try to use baking soda toothpastes, you'll have about 70 percent of the same effect without the breakouts. Decide for yourself, but I think it's worth it.