Best Electric Toothbrushes 2019 - Toothbrush Reviews, Comparisons
We started testing electric toothbrushes in 2014, and we’ve spent hundreds of hours since researching and comparing the best models and brands on the market. Most recently, we spent more than 40 hours evaluating and testing toothbrushes in our lab – including more than five hours of brushing. This is the equivalent of one person brushing twice daily for 75 days. Once our teeth were sparkly clean, we compiled our testing data and selected the Philips Sonicare 2 (HX6211/04) as our Best Overall pick. Time-tested and reliable, this toothbrush gives you all the benefits of sonic wave technology without fancy features to drive up its price.
Philips Sonicare 2 (HX6211/04)
The Philips Sonicare 2 is a high-performing electric toothbrush without a high-end price. It has a comfortable grip and uses sonic wave technology to leave your teeth feeling smooth and clean.
Oral-B Pro 1000
The Oral-B Pro 1000 is the best electric toothbrush you can buy for less than $50. Its waterproof handle is slim by design, and it has a built-in brushing pressure sensor.
Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Smart
The Philips Sonicare DiamondClean is the Rolls-Royce of electric toothbrushes. Classy and intuitive, it has a slim, LED-lit handle and features Bluetooth capability, smartphone integration and an interactive, downloadable app.
|Product||Price||Overall Rating||Price||Performance||Design||Features & Accessories||Cleaning Technology and Sonic Strokes per Minute||User Experience||Battery Life||Battery Type and Recharge Time||Design||Grip||Ease of Changing Brush Heads||Timer||Pressure Sensor and Alert||Cleaning Modes and Intensity Settings||Bluetooth Capability with Brushing App||Accessories||Warranty||Support||User Guide|
|Philips Sonicare 2 (HX6211/04)||View Deal||4.5/5||4.3||4.7||4.7||2.4||Sonic / 31,000||A-||14 Days||NiMH / 24 Hours||A-||Slim, Ergonomic||A||✖||Not Available||1 Mode - Daily Clean||No||Handle, 1 Brush Head, Travel Charger, 1 Travel Cap||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||A-|
|Oral-B Pro 1000||View Deal||4/5||3.7||4||4.3||2.3||Oscillating, Rotating and Pulsing Movements||A||7 Days||Rechargeable / 22 Hours||B||Slim, Ergonomic, Waterproof||A-||2 Minutes, 30-second Stutter||B||1 Mode - Daily Clean||No||Handle, 1 Brush Head, Charging Station||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||B|
|Philips Sonicare DiamondClean||View Deal||4/5||1.7||5||5||5||Sonic / 31,000||A+||14 Days||Lithium Ion / 24 Hours||A+||Slim, Ergonomic||A+||2 Minutes, Resume Memory, Auto Shut-off, Added Zone Notifications and App Interaction||A+||4 Modes - Clean, White+, Deep Clean+ and Gum Health; 3 Intensities - Low, Medium, High||Yes||Handle, 3 Brush Heads, Charging/Rinsing Glass, Charging Travel Case with Integrated USB Cord||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||A-|
|Philips Sonicare FlexCare||View Deal||4/5||2.2||4.8||4.8||4.8||Sonic / 31,000||A||14 Days||Lithium Ion / 24 Hours||A||Slim, Ergonomic||A+||2 Minutes, Resume Memory, Auto Shut-off, Added Zone Notifications and App Interaction||A+||3 Modes - Clean, White, Deep Clean; 3 Intensities - Low, Medium, High||Yes||Handle, 2 Brush Heads, Travel Charger, Travel Case, 2 Travel Caps||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||A-|
|Oral-B Pro 5000||View Deal||4/5||3.3||4.3||4.5||3.2||Oscillating, Rotating and Pulsing Movements||A-||10 Days||Rechargeable / 10 Hours||B+||Slim, Ergonomic||A||2 Minutes, 30-second Pulses||B+||5 Modes - Daily Clean, Gum Care, Sensitive, Whitening, Deep Clean||Yes||Handle, 1 Brush Head, Charging/Storage Station, Travel Case||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||A+|
|Waterpik Sensonic SR-3000||View Deal||4/5||4||3.7||4.8||2||Sonic / 30,500||B+||7 Days||NiMH / 12 Hours||A||Slim, Ergonomic||A||2 Minutes, 30-Second Notification||Not Available||2 Modes - High, Low||No||Handle, 3 Brush Heads, 2 Brush Head Covers, Docking/Charging Station, Travel Case||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||B+|
|Oral-B Genius Pro 8000||View Deal||4/5||2.2||4.5||4.7||4.2||Oscillating, Rotating and Pulsing Movements||A||12 Days||Lithium Ion / 12 Hours||A-||Slim, Ergonomic||A+||✖||A-||6 Modes - Daily Clean, Gum Care, Sensitive, Whitening, Tongue Cleaning and Pro-Clean||Yes||Handle, 3 Brush Heads, Charging Station, Storage/Refill Case, Smart Travel Case, Smartphone Holder||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||A+|
|Wellness HP-STX||View Deal||4/5||4.4||3.7||4.4||2.4||Sonic / 38,000||B-||14 Days||Rechargeable / 24 Hours||B-||Slim, Ergonomic||A-||2 Minutes, 30-second Alert, Auto Shut-off||Not Available||3 Modes - Power/Clean, Soft/Gentle, Massage||No||Handle, 10-20 Brush Heads, Charging Station with Storage/Refill Case||1 Year||Online Service Request Form||B-|
|Philips Sonicare Essence 5600||View Deal||3.5/5||5||3.8||2.7||2.4||Sonic / 31,000||B-||14 Days||NiMH / 24 Hours||B-||Rounded, Rubber Grip||C-||2 Minutes, Resume Memory, Auto Shut-off||Not Available||1 Mode - Daily Clean||No||Handle, 1 Brush Head, Charging Station, 1 Travel Cap||2 Years||Phone, Email, Chat||A-|
|Pursonic S520||View Deal||3.5/5||4||3.7||4||2.3||Sonic / 40,000||C+||14 Days||Rechargeable / 12 Hours||A-||Slim, Ergonomic, Rubberized||B||2 Minutes, 30-Second Vibrations||Not Available||3 Modes - Power/Clean, Soft/Gentle, Massage||No||Handle, 18 Brush Heads, Storage Case, Docking/Charging Station, 2 Travel Caps||1 Year||Phone, Email||C|
The Philips Sonicare 2 is our Best Overall pick in electric toothbrushes because it provides a deep sonic wave clean without cleaning out your wallet. In our well-researched opinion, the Philips Sonicare 2 doesn’t need frills to make it an excellent choice.
It has an angled brush head to help you easily access your back teeth, and it comes with Sonicare’s exclusive easy-start feature. We like how this feature helps you transition to using an electric toothbrush over the course of two weeks by gradually increasing its power.
The toothbrush is available in five colors, and it comes with a slim, ergonomic handle. You’ll also get Sonicare’s ProResults brush head, a protective travel cap and a travel charger. Its built-in Smartimer automatically stops your toothbrush after you’ve brushed for the dentist-recommended two minutes, and if you need to pause mid-brushing to rinse or add toothpaste, it resumes right where you left off. The toothbrush’s sonic wave cleaning technology vibrates at up to 31,000 brush strokes per minute, and its fluid dynamics help you clean between your teeth.
Our testers thought this toothbrush felt “velvety” in their mouths, and they said its handle was comfortable to hold. It has a quiet operational volume, and a full charge gives you up to 14 days of twice-daily brushing. When it’s time to plug in the charger, the handle has a built-in battery light to let you know when it’s ready to be used again. Like most of the toothbrushes we tested, the Sonicare 2 comes with a two-year limited warranty. You can access Sonicare’s customer service by phone, email and chat.
The Oral-B Pro 1000 uses oscillating, rotating and pulsing movements to clean your teeth thoroughly. We chose it as our Best Value pick because it offers the two features most recommended by dentists at the most affordable price we’ve seen.
First, it has a two-minute timer that stutters every 30 seconds to help you focus on each quadrant of your mouth. Second, its built-in pressure sensor automatically stops the brush’s pulsation if you’re pressing too hard.
The toothbrush’s round CrossAction head has bristles angled at 16 degrees. Because all nine of Oral-B’s brush heads are compatible with the Pro 1000’s handle, you have a variety of brush head options to choose from when it’s time to replace the original. The rechargeable battery gives you up to seven days of brushing between charges, and a built-in battery display tells you when it’s time for a recharge.
Oral-B markets the Pro 1000 toothbrush as especially effective in removing plaque along your gumline. It is also one of the first electric toothbrushes on the market to have received the American Dental Association’s ADA Seal of Acceptance. It comes with a two-year limited warranty, and you can reach Oral-B’s customer service by phone, email and chat.
The Philips Sonicare DiamondClean is so high-tech that its brush heads are equipped with microchips to tell its sleek black handle which one you’re using. The handle then automatically adjusts its cleaning mode and intensity to match.
Featuring four cleaning modes with three intensities, the toothbrush uses sonic wave technology to vibrate at up to 31,000 brush strokes per minute. It provides Clean, White+, Deep Clean+ and Gum Health cleaning modes, and it enhances the brushing experience with Bluetooth capability and an interactive app to help you maintain proper technique, track your brushing habits and even order replacement heads.
The DiamondClean’s brushing pressure sensor includes a light ring on the end of the handle. The lights flash and the handle vibrates if you press too hard, and there’s also a built-in scrubbing sensor to alert you if you’re brushing improperly. The toothbrush comes with three brush heads and a tongue brush, along with a charging travel case and a charging glass that doubles as a rinsing glass.
The toothbrush’s lithium-ion battery gives you 14 days of operating time, and its built-in battery life indicator flashes white until the toothbrush is fully charged. The DiamondClean toothbrush is backed by a two-year limited warranty, and Philips Sonicare customer service is available by phone, email and chat.
The Pursonic S520 is a moderately priced electric toothbrush that uses sonic wave technology to clean your teeth. It has more accessories than any other toothbrush we tested, and you can choose from four handle colors.
Pursonic bundles the S520 with 12 color-coded brush heads and a storage case that holds six. You also get a pair each of interdental brush heads, tongue cleaners and floss holders, along with two travel caps and a docking and charging station. The S520’s battery lasts for up to 28 two-minute brush cycles. Once the battery depletes, it takes up to 12 hours to charge, and an LED indicator shows you its progress. This toothbrush has a two-minute timer and three cleaning modes. However, switching between modes isn’t easy. Another drawback is the S520 doesn’t have a pressure sensor to alert you if you brush too hard. Pursonic provides a one-year warranty on the S520. Customer support is available only by email.
Best for Under $100
The Waterpik Sensonic SR-3000 is a high-quality electric toothbrush priced below $100. Like the Philips Sonicare products we tested, it features sonic wave cleaning technology, and its brush heads have soft, end-rounded bristles.
The Sensonic has two cleaning modes, and its contoured, rubberized handle is comfortable to hold. Though it doesn’t have a pressure sensor, its cleaning motion is gentle, and it has a two-minute timer that reminds you at 30-second intervals to move to a different area of your teeth and gums. The Sensonic has global voltage compatibility for travel, and its battery lasts for up to a week of brushing twice daily. An LED indicator notifies you of battery life in thirds, and a full recharge takes 12 hours. This toothbrush comes with three brush heads, two brush head covers, a docking and charging station, and a travel case. Waterpik warranties the Sensonic for two years, and you can reach customer service by phone, email and chat.
Why Trust Us
Beyond the research and testing we conducted in our lab, we reached out to dentists and dental hygienists to learn what’s important to consider when you’re looking for an electric toothbrush. Dr. James Doll, a graduate of Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health, gave us great advice.
"Talk to your dentist about your particular situation,” he said. “If you’re more prone to gum recession, I’d suggest something that cleans well but is ultra-gentle to the gums. At the same time, some people may build up plaque or debris that is thicker or more difficult to remove, and a different brush may work better to get between the teeth or to remove difficult types of buildup. There are a number of excellent choices out there and a number of excellent brush heads. Asking your dentist or hygienist is always an excellent way to go.”
Keeping Dr. Doll’s recommendation in mind, we reviewed the best toothbrushes we could find to help you make a well-informed decision for you and your family.
How We Tested
Because electric toothbrushes range widely in price and features, we evaluated basic, mid-range and higher-end units. We chose models using either sonic wave technology or rotating, oscillating and pulsing movements to clean your teeth. Our research ended in the purchase of 12 toothbrushes, 10 of which made it to our final lineup.
The Quip brush, in our preliminary testing, failed to impress based on the quality of teeth cleaning it offered. On first blush, it seems that it’s intended to work like the sonic devices we recommend. Regrettably, we found that it does little more than buzz. While that feels pleasant on the teeth, there was little evidence that teeth were being cleaned properly. Juxtaposed against that was the performance of the Goby. Its oscillating brush head cleaned well but was uncomfortable to use. On its lower setting it was more tolerable but still was not the sort of product we’d be likely to use on a continuing basis.
Please keep in mind that at least two of the Philips Sonicare models we tested have recently been upgraded to newer models. The Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 4100 Plaque Control and the Philips Sonicare Essence+, respectively, are the newest iterations of the Philips Sonicare 2 HX6211/04 and the Philips Sonicare Essence 5600. Once the upgrades have been on the market a bit longer and are more widely available, we will update our lineup to reflect the changes. Also, as cleaning technologies and features continue to advance across the board, we’ll keep you in the know when our top brands introduce improved products.
In the meantime, here’s how we tested our current favorites:
- We meticulously outlined and compared each toothbrush’s features and accessories.
- We evaluated each toothbrush handle’s weight, grip, brush heads and charging station for ease of use and durability.
- We downloaded and tested the apps included with four of the higher-end toothbrushes on our list.
- We (repeatedly) ate gooey chocolate cookies and then brushed our teeth.
Once we finished our testing, we compiled and analyzed the data we gathered to provide you with our best recommendations. We’ve selected our Best Overall, Best Value and Best Premium picks, and we’ve provided in-depth reviews of all 10 toothbrushes we tested to help you choose an electric toothbrush that makes your smile bright.
Finding a Smile-Worthy Toothbrush
With name-brand manual toothbrushes priced below $10, it can be hard to justify spending 20 times more for a top-of-the-line electric toothbrush. However, dentists and hygienists increasingly recommend electric toothbrushes over manual options. Dr. Doll, who has been practicing dentistry since 2009, noted several reasons why.
“A lot of the newer electric toothbrushes can sense pressure and therefore can clean well without overcleaning things and damaging the gums,” he said. “Also, their rotary movements or sonic movements enable, in my opinion, better plaque removal.”
How Much You’ll Pay
The least expensive electric toothbrush we tested costs just under $25, and prices jump very quickly from there to more than $300. However, most people can find an excellent toothbrush with all the features and accessories they need for $50 to $90.
The consensus among our testers was that if we were given a $300 toothbrush as a gift, we’d love it – but we wouldn’t spend so much money on our own. While the more expensive models may be tempting, people don’t consistently use the premium brushes’ higher-end features and specialty cleaning modes. Keep in mind that the price of your toothbrush over time also includes the price of replacement brush heads. Dentists recommend swapping out old brush heads at least every three months, and the cost can add up. Most companies offer value packs to help you save money, and there are several compatible knock-off brands available.
It may be helpful to think of the differences in a specific brand’s toothbrushes like you think about trim options with cars. The two most popular electric toothbrush brands, Philips Sonicare and Oral-B, each have a growing line of toothbrushes available in value, midrange and premium price tiers.
The electric toothbrushes we tested use either of the technologies Dr. Doll mentioned. Toothbrushes with rotary movements clean your teeth as a motor-driven toothbrush head oscillates, rotates and pulsates. Sonic wave toothbrushes, by contrast, use a brushing mechanism powered by high-frequency vibrations to clean your teeth. A resulting fluid dynamics process drives liquid between your teeth to clean beyond where the toothbrush heads’ bristles actually touch.
The American Dental Association has given specific toothbrushes using either technology its seal of acceptance. This designation means a product has passed lab tests and met standards to demonstrate that, based on the ADA’s guidelines, it “is safe and has shown efficacy in removing plaque and helping to prevent and reduce gingivitis, when used as directed.”
As a result, you can feel confident that a choice between rotating, oscillating and pulsating and sonic wave technologies is based more on personal preference than on effectiveness in cleaning your teeth. Manufacturers of both kinds of electric toothbrush make bold claims about how well their products work, and they back those claims with data gathered during clinical trials.
“My wife uses the sonic, and I use the rotary,” said Dr. Doll. “I like them both. They both give a clean feel when finished but do it in a different way. I’d have a tough time picking just one.”
Design and Performance
When you’re making your own pick, you’ll want to decide which cleaning technology you prefer. If you’ve never used an electric toothbrush before, it might take a week or two to get used to its cleaning movements, and you’ll want to avoid scrubbing motions because they can irritate your gums. Look for a toothbrush handle that feels comfortable in your hand and has a nice grip. You might also want to think about the ease of changing brush heads, especially if you’ll be sharing a single handle with multiple members of your household.
Features and Accessories
It’s a good idea to think ahead about the features and accessories most important to you. If you have specific cleaning goals, dental or orthodontic hardware in your mouth or sensitive gums, multiple cleaning modes might be helpful. If not, a single cleaning mode will likely work just fine. If the idea of Bluetooth technology and a downloadable app is appealing, go in to your purchase knowing that these features come at a premium price. Other add-ons to consider include interdental brush heads, tongue cleaners, flossers, smartphone integrated travel cases and rinsing glasses. One toothbrush we reviewed even has a model with a UV sanitizer.
What Is Waterpik?
We didn't test them, but Waterpik water flossers have become popular in the dental care world. This isn't your average electric toothbrush but might be the best solution if you have particularly sensitive gums and teeth or simply want an extra deep cleaning. The idea behind the Waterpik is that brushing isn't enough. This device shoots a pressurized stream of water at your teeth, like a miniature pressure washer. This cleans effectively at the gumline and between teeth. But don’t worry – it doesn’t hurt. And as an added bonus, clinical studies of the Waterpik have found that the water flosser is 51 percent more effective at reducing gingivitis and twice as effective at reducing gingival bleeding than plain old flossing, according to OGLF.org.
These devices come in a countertop version with a rather large water reservoir that gives you 90 seconds of teeth cleaning. There are also cordless models available that run on AA batteries. Regardless of the model, you can change the pressure and pause the flow at any time during brushing. It takes some getting used to, but since the Waterpik has the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance from the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs, it's worth checking out.
The downside to the Waterpik is its price. These machines cost anywhere from $60 to $140 depending on the model. Some are available in varied colors, and we'll be honest, even the portable model is pretty bulky. Aside from that, these little pressure washers look like an interesting development in dental care worth trying out. If you want something more affordable or simply different, other dental hygiene brands make water flossers, including Panasonic, ToiletTree and H20floss.