Judging by your responses to this week’s Co-op call, the only toothbrushes that matter have rotating brush heads. I’m inclined to agree. Your dentist probably agrees. Buuuuuuuuuut, anything electric and ripe with vibration is better than manual brushing, and many of these brushes offer meaningful benefits, if not imparted directly to the cleanliness of your mouth, then at least to your happiness and quality of life.
Let’s be honest: most people aren’t going to drop $280 on an electric toothbrush. That’s how much the top-recommended Sonicare DiamondClean costs, and based on customer reviews and dominance of online lists, it may well be worth the asking price. But that’s not your only option.
Oral-B’s rotating brush heads are also recommended by many folks, especially with a budget-friendlier price point around $50 for some, plus there are much cheaper Sonicare options out there. Your dentist will either thank you or gripe about how these fancy toothbrushes are putting them out of business.
We saw other cool recommendations, too, like the Quip, which has a mirror holder for brush heads with built-in UV cleaning. Like all matters of health, taking care of your teeth is a lifelong endeavor, so let’s get serious about it and find your molars’ new best friend!
I nominate the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Smart 9750.
Sonicare is basically the OG of electric toothbrushes. They were in every dentist and orthodontist’s office I went to growing up, and it wasn’t until I was an adult and could justify spending $300 on a toothbrush that I figured out why.
First off, it’s just a damn good toothbrush. My teeth have never been as clean as they have been since starting to use it, and I haven’t had a cavity in the decade that I’ve been using it, despite consuming lots of sugar.
Second, it’s easy to recharge. Just drop it on the charger base after you’re done in the morning and it’s ready by bedtime. Or, just keep the included glass on the charger and drop it in after you’re done for the same effect.
Third, it’s great for travel. It’s a little piece of home you can take with you. Every brush head comes with a travel cap to keep stuff off of it.
Fourth, brush heads last a surprising amount of time—usually 2-3 months between replacements.
And fifth, it comes in a snazzy navy blue. – MonkeyBiz
It’s pricey but I got mine on Prime day for half off and love it. Between Plackers and my Sonicare Diamond, the dental assistant never has any complaints when I get a teeth cleaning (which I only do about once a year) – Strossus
Best Oral-B: Oral-B 1000 CrossAction | $45 (Clip coupon)
I’ve used Sonicare in the past which worked OK, but had issues where the battery needed to be recharged daily in order for it to work, so I had to find a replacement. I’ve been using the Oral-B for the past two years without issue—it recharges for regular brushing for a week’s usage (twice each day) for a 2 minute cycle. It’s not a crazy high price point like their higher-end models if you’ve never had an electric brush before, but it gets the job done and the battery life is still going strong after this long. – TacosRule
Sonicare. Any model, really. I’ve been using them for close to 20 years now and get compliments from hygienists every time I go to the dentist. I’ve tried Oral-B brushes, but they don’t seem as effective to me. – Donut Resuscitate
I recently got myself and my partner one of these each (I went with silver, they got copper), and we both love them. It takes a single AAA battery, so no recharging required unless you’re using a rechargeable battery. That also means no bulky docking station! The toothbrush itself is a super comfortable size; I used a Sonicare toothbrush before for years and man is it huge. This one also travels super well, and the travel case you see for it actually can attach to a mirror or similar surface as a toothbrush holder, which I find super handy. It also does the normal 2-minute timer (with four 30-second increments to switch quadrants of the mouth), which keeps my ADHD self on task. It’s also way cheaper than any comparable electric toothbrush I’ve seen, and they have $5 refills that they schedule for every 3 months; the refills for the toothbrush alone contain a new brush head + AAA battery, but you have the option of adding toothpaste and floss as well. Also, can we just admit that it looks about as cool as a toothbrush is going to? – Petrosphia
I’ll nominate the Quip. It’s not the strongest of the lot in terms of vibration, but it’s a noticeable improvement over my old manual toothbrush, and they have a simple form & usability I appreciate. But the deciding factor for me was that it’s the only(?) brush that runs on a single triple-A battery—which means you don’t need to keep a charging station for it, which means no unsightly plug and wire dangling around your sink all the time. – Silge
Basically the size of a standard toothbrush, subscription brush + AAA battery plan helps keep track of and cycle clean heads. Includes a mirror-attachable brush holder that doubles as a travel cover. Good motor strength. Brush cycle is broken into four 30-second intervals to help distribute attention while brushing.
There are likely “better” brushes, but none are as no-frills, portable, enjoyable to use as the quip. They just released a “smart” model, too, with Bluetooth tracking for those that find that interesting. – Saccharomyces
Best Budget: Aquasonic Black Series | $33 (Clip Coupon)
Aquasonic Black Series. Comes with 8 Dupont brush heads, protective/travel case that holds two brush heads. The battery lasted about 45-50 days for me on two brushes/day. Each brushing has a 2 minute time broken down into auto 30 second timer x 4 per so you brush each quadrant for 30 sec. Four different brush modes: clean/soft/whiten/massage. – yaosbaos
Our own Gabe Carey can attest to the unique cleaning capabilities of the Colgate Hum, which not only is a fine electric toothbrush but also gamifies the experience with a smartphone app and rewards for brushing.
If that sounds like the kind of thing that’ll keep you brushing on a regular basis, check out the Hum, available in AAA battery-powered ($50) and rechargeable ($70) versions direct from Colgate.
As a reformed gamer, it helps that the Colgate Hum gamifies the act of brushing your teeth by rewarding you with “Smile Points” in its accompanying mobile app after each session. Better still, those points can be exchanged for real-world currency, which you can apply to purchases including replacement heads and even a new Hum brush. In other words, brush your teeth every day and you’ll get yours … sort of.