Fabulous’ editor defies the adult brace shamers and reveals why she has no regrets about fixing her teeth in her 40s


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Brace yourself

Sinead McIntyre was self-conscious about her brace at first, and put up with jibes from her nearest and dearest, but here she explains why it was all worth it.

MANY years ago, a male friend told me he loved my crooked teeth.

“They make you you,” he added. And for decades I lived by this mantra.

 Fabulous' Editor Sinead McIntyre has been wearing a brace for 18 weeks and loves her new teeth

Fabulous

Fabulous’ Editor Sinead McIntyre has been wearing a brace for 18 weeks and loves her new teeth

But in my 40s, something changed. I became obsessed with straight teeth.

Maybe because these days almost everyone – from Kate Middleton and Cheryl to Mark Wright – has very straight, super-white teeth. They are everywhere.

Then, two summers ago, one of my dearest friends took a selfie of us and put it on social media, and I was horrified. There, glaring out from my mouth were crooked, yellow teeth stained from years of coffee-drinking and my love of red wine.

It was all the more obvious because hers were lovely. So I decided I had to get a brace.

Thankfully, these days it is so much easier to wear a brace as an adult.

Celebs including Tom Cruise, Gwen Stefani and Amanda Holden have blazed a trail. And they no longer have to be the unattractive, scary-looking metal train tracks famously worn by Ugly Betty – a rite of passage for many teens.

 Celebs like Tom Cruise have helped normalise wearing braces in adulthood

Rex Features

Celebs like Tom Cruise have helped normalise wearing braces in adulthood

Instead, there’s a wide selection of discreet options available, and many dentists offer interest-free ways to pay them off, which is perhaps why so many adults are doing it.

According to my dentist, Dr Sandra Garcia Martin of Harley Street Dental Studio, 80% of brace enquiries at her practice are from people over 35.

“A nice smile is a sign of self-confidence, but years ago it wasn’t always an option because of the cost,” she says. “It’s become much more affordable, so it’s not surprising so many people are booking in.”

In my friendship group alone, I know of four people who wear them or have worn them as an adult. One told me: “I can’t afford a house but at least I can fix my teeth.”

 Scary-looking metal train tracks famously worn by Ugly Betty used to be a rite of passage - but not anymore

Splash

Scary-looking metal train tracks famously worn by Ugly Betty used to be a rite of passage – but not anymore

Another started to notice hers were moving and wanted to sort them, and two are getting married.

However, to my nearest and dearest, me getting a brace was the funniest thing they’d ever heard.

“What’s next – a boob job?” exclaimed my husband in astonishment. (The answer is no, by the way. My boobs are just fine the way they are).

My mum – a typical straight-talking Irish mother – was equally horrified: “At your age? Why on earth would you?”

To my nearest and dearest, me getting a brace was the funniest thing they’d ever heard.

Sinead McIntyreFabulous’ editor

It’s almost as if, at 45, my life is practically over. I mean, why bother with new clothes and cutting my hair?

Despite the negativity, I ploughed ahead. I investigated various options and visited several dentists – even scoping out a Groupon offer that looked great, apart from the fact that the dental surgery was miles from anywhere.

In the end I chose a dentist who didn’t insist I had to do both my lower and upper teeth, and I went for a clear Invisalign brace that is removable.

At the start I was terribly self-conscious about taking it out in front of people to eat and drink, as well as the small lisp it gave me. But no one could tell I was even wearing it.

 Gwen Stefani with braces in 1999

PA

Gwen Stefani with braces in 1999

And now, after 18 weeks, I’m almost done. My top teeth are nearly straight, and the confidence boost it’s given me has been absolutely worth it. I no longer feel ashamed to smile at people.

Yes, my teeth are a part of me, but that doesn’t mean I can’t fix them.

Recently I texted my mum a smiling selfie and said: “You see! And you told me not to do it.”

She replied: “Whatever makes you happy.”

Absolutely.

Want whiter teeth? Caprice and Casey Batchelor share their beauty tips






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