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At last, British dentistry has something to smile about

Name: British teeth.

Age: Miscellaneous.

Appearance: Fantastic!

Wait a minute. The whole world knows that British people are sexual deviants with good manners and bad teeth! Not any more. I mean we’re definitely still perverts. And we do say sorry for standing near each other. It’s just that we have finally got our teeth fixed.

What, all of us? A lot of us. Apparently, Britain’s 100 largest dentist companies recorded a collective turnover of nearly £1bn last year, representing a rise of 22% since 2010.

But that’s just an approximately 5% annual growth rate compounded over four years, not very different from how the FTSE index of 100 leading shares has performed over the same period! And perhaps 2010-2014 was a period of consolidation within dental services, meaning that the top 100 firms just became bigger companies? Oh shush. The point is that British people are spending a lot more money on cosmetic dentistry. We all used to look like Austin Powers. Now we all look like, I don’t know, Prince George.

Has the little chap even got teeth? I neither know nor care.

So have you had your teeth whitened? I haven’t had my teeth whitened. I couldn’t say for certain that I have even brushed them every day since 2010. Oh it’s not just whitening we’re talking about. There’s smile analysis software and invisible tooth straighteners now. And much of it is becoming routinely available on the high street.

Goodness. When did teeth stop being biting implements and start being fashion accessories? I think they are still quite widely used for biting, to be fair. It’s just that people care more about their physical defects once they know it would be easy to do something about them.

Such as shaving off your enormous ponce-beard? Actually, I think that’s more of a fashion choice. But we do seem to be heading for a future in which cosmetic dentistry becomes as normal as back waxing or fish pedicures.

Seems hard to imagine, doesn’t it? It does indeed.

Do say: “Does this mean that Americans will stop mocking British teeth?”

Don’t say: “If only there were some funny generalisations that could be made about Americans …”

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