The most requested smiles in Scotland

A great smile is often noted as the most attractive trait a person can have – so it’s no wonder that so many people are fixated on achieving the perfect smile, whatever that means to them.

Statistics say that 82% of dentists believe that celebrity culture has boosted demand for dentistry, with cosmetic treatments like whitening and alignment in particular seeing a rise in popularity. And celebrity in particular is what’s influencing Scots, with 60% of dentists here reporting that patients reference a specific celebrity smile they want to recreate when it comes to their own dentistry.

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We’ve spoken to the team at New Town Dental Care, Edinburgh’s premier dentistry clinic, to find out which celebrity smiles are the most popular in Scotland, and why they’re so high in demand…

“Celebrity and social media, or the two combined, have really boosted the demand for cosmetic dentistry in the past few years,” explains Dr Alastair McGill of New Town Dental Care. “We have patients across the board who come into the clinic with a very specific idea in mind, and over the years, we’ve seen many more who show us Instagram accounts or photographs of the celebrities or influencers whose smile they want to emulate. In particular, we see regular requests for the same small number of celebrities who appear to be especially popular with our patients at the moment.”

And why is it celebrity smiles in particular, rather than just a desire to have ‘better’ teeth?

“As a whole, we are so exposed to celebrity culture now, with magazines showing off red-carpet photos alongside personal snaps from celebrity Instagram accounts, giving us an insight into the celebrity lifestyle like we’ve never had before. Celebrities sharing their personal lives with us via social media makes them more relatable, so it’s natural that their audiences want to emulate them.  It makes everything from their lifestyles to their looks appear more achievable, and it also sets a precedent for what is perceived to be beautiful. Having great teeth and an attractive smile has always been in-demand across the dental industry, but we now find that patients are more committed than ever to doing what it takes to achieve a celebrity-worthy smile of their own, to look just as good on their own social media profiles.”

So, who’s the most popular celebrity request?

“When it comes to our female patients, we see the most requests for a natural-looking, approachable yet beautiful smile, like Margot Robbie or Meghan Markle. Margot’s smile is actually the most-requested across the UK, so we’re not surprised that so many of our patients reference her specifically. Both Meghan and Margot have beautiful smiles, with teeth that are even in width and length, beautifully aligned and white in a very natural, glossy way. Their teeth look great without being obviously cosmetically-enhanced; it’s a style that looks as if they were genetically blessed, when in reality, it’s far more likely that they have undergone alignment procedures, possibly like Invisalign or lingual braces, as well as professional whitening, to get them to this stage. It’s more about subtle work to elevate the smile, rather than create something that looks obviously enhanced or overly glossy or fake.”

How about the male patients, who do men want to look like?

“Our male patients are split into two camps when it comes to their smiles. We find that men in their thirties and forties favour a more subtle look, straightening and whitening but maintaining the natural effect of the teeth. Jake Gyllenhaal and Ryan Reynolds are both popular requests for this kind of look, and we know that when patients mention either, they are looking for a smile that looks effortless, natural and healthy. For this kind of smile, we usually look at alignment (again, very subtle treatments like Invisalign and lingual braces are especially popular, to disguise the effect of the work being done) and professional whitening to lighten the colour.

However, younger male patients are spiking a trend for a much more obviously-enhanced look, requesting veneers and a very bright white colour to the teeth. When this look is discussed in-clinic, they often mention celebrities like Love Island contestant Jack Fincham or other reality TV stars; they want that very obviously-enhanced look, with very bright teeth and a precisely straight, even, glossy finish. It’s actually the second most-requested treatment across the UK as a whole, so it’s clearly very popular! This kind of look carries a few things to bear in mind; it’s high-maintenance, it’s expensive and it will take hours in the chair to achieve. We would personally always advise our patients to learn towards a more natural look rather than something that is so trend-led, but we can discuss requirements with every patient to help them find the smile that’s perfect for them.”

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