Includes two-minute timer and three levels of intensity for a thorough and customized cleaning session. Effective at whitening and removing plaque.
Occasional complaints about the durability of the toothbrush.
Toothbrush guards against "overbrushing" with pressure sensor. Two-week battery life before need for a recharge.
It does not have the varying intensities that some other Sonicare toothbrushes offer.
Many buyers say their dentists notice the change when they switch to this model. A high-quality choice with long-lasting battery that leaves buyers' mouths feeling great.
Some note that this toothbrush runs rough and excessively vibrates. There have been issues with this option breaking down or not holding a charge after a few months.
Economically priced. Users report that their dentists recommended this model and have noticed the cleanliness of their teeth after its prolonged use. Multiple speeds help to ease manual brush users into it.
Mold growth seems to be a common problem with this model, particularly where the brush fits into the base.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
For years, Sonicare has led the way in electric toothbrush technology. Although other manufacturers have tried to usurp the top spot, Sonicare continues to innovate with new and convenient features. The company produces enough choices now that it can be hard to decide on one model.
If you’re unsure what Sonicare toothbrush you need, you've come to the right place!
Our shopping guide was created to help you narrow your choices by providing in-depth information about the available models and their features. We've also included some top picks so you can see the products we think provide the best value for your dollar.
Charger vs. battery power
The vast majority of Sonicare toothbrushes use a rechargeable battery and a charger. These models have more power and longer battery life, but they take up more counter space (wireless and cup chargers use the most) and aren't always attractive. While battery-powered models may not have as much power, and they do require battery replacement, these toothbrushes are more portable and a great option if you have limited counter space.
Sonicare toothbrush features
Timer(s): This one of the main reasons people purchase an electric toothbrush. Dentists recommend brushing for a full two minutes to completely clean teeth. Most Sonicare toothbrushes come with a built-in Smartimer that runs the vibrations for two minutes.
Some models also include a Quadpacer, a quadrant timer that breaks the two minutes down into 30-second intervals. A pause in vibration marks the end of one interval and start of the next. A quadrant timer can be used to brush your teeth in quadrants: bottom front, bottom back, top front, and top back.
Speed/intensity settings: Several models have up to three speed or intensity settings. If you're a first-time user, we recommend starting on the lowest setting to give yourself time to adjust to the feel of the sonic vibrations. Those with sensitive teeth may also be happier at the lowest speed. However, you can also try the other speeds if you have hard-to-clean teeth.
Pressure sensor: Excess pressure on the gums can cause gum recession, which can lead to periodontal disease. Some Sonicare toothbrushes have a pressure sensor that alerts the user or stops the vibrations if too much pressure is applied.
Brush heads: Some toothbrushes come with two identical brush heads, while others include different types. If you have special brushing needs, a model that comes with several different brush heads make sense. But if you just want to make sure to brush your teeth for two minutes, you probably don't need more than one type of brush head.
A few high-end models have smart brush technology. These brush heads have an embedded chip that automatically selects the correct mode and intensity for you. All you have to do is turn the toothbrush on.
Battery life: Battery life determines not only the power of the toothbrush but how long it can hold a charge before you need to replace the batteries or recharge. Even the most basic models can go several days to a week without recharging, while high-end models may last two to three weeks. Check the battery type of the model you're considering because some types of batteries, like lithium-ion, last longer if they’re never fully drained.
Charger style: Chargers come in three different styles: stand, cup, and wireless.
Stand chargers have an electrical cord attached to a base with a peg to hold the toothbrush in place while charging.
Cup chargers have a charger hidden in the base of a glass cup. The toothbrush rests inside the cup while charging. Cup chargers can also be used as a cup for rinsing.
Wireless chargers have a charging pad onto which you place the toothbrush. Sonicare’s wireless chargers are compatible with most Qi-enabled devices, including some smartphones, giving you a bigger bang for your buck if you can charge more than one device.
Bluetooth technology with brushing app: Bluetooth technology helps take your oral health care to the next level. Bluetooth-enabled toothbrushes transmit information to a smartphone app that tracks where and how long you've brushed. Armed with this kind of information, you’ll be able to adjust your brushing habits to improve your oral health.
Movements per minute: You can get a good cleaning no matter the brush head’s movements per minute, but to give you an idea of the power available, we’ve included Sonicare’s three levels:
15,000/minute: Battery-powered toothbrushes use 15,000 brush movements per minute, making them the weakest of the toothbrushes.
31,000/minute: Several Sonicare models use 31,000 movements per minute.
62,000/minute: Most Sonicare toothbrushes can reach a top speed of 62,000 movements per minute. You may or may not want that much power, but many of the models that reach top speeds have several intensity settings, so you can find a speed that’s comfortable for you.
Electric toothbrushes can get accidentally turned on while in a suitcase or backpack. If travel is in your future, you’ll need a carrying case for your toothbrush. Some Sonicare toothbrushes come with a case while others don’t, but you can purchase one separately.
Unplug your charger when it’s not in use to save electricity. Sonicare toothbrushes can go several days without charging.
Proper handle and charger maintenance are important to the longevity of the toothbrush. Wipe any water or buildup off the charger and regularly sanitize the handle by wiping it clean with a dry or damp cloth. Do not submerge the charger or handle in water.
Battery-powered and the most basic rechargeable toothbrushes sell for under $20. These brushes don’t have all the bells and whistles and may function at the low speed of 15,000 movements per minute, but they still have Smartimers and clean better than the best manual toothbrush.
The toothbrushes that fall in the $25 to $150 range offer some excellent benefits like quadrant timers, additional cleaning modes, and multiple intensity settings. At this price, you’ll also find kits that come with two toothbrushes and carrying cases, doubling the value.
Between $150 and $300 are more multi-toothbrush kits or kits that include replacement or specialty brush heads. Models with cup chargers and a few Bluetooth-enabled toothbrushes with coordinating apps also come at this price.
For over $300, you’ll find kits with multiple handles, heads, and carrying cases. Cup and wireless chargers are more common at this price, too. Most of these toothbrushes are Bluetooth-enabled, so you can fully track and modify your oral hygiene.
Whitening power with impressive battery life
The HealthyWhite+ combines performance and battery life at a reasonable price. The whitening mode works beautifully. Plus, it comes with several speeds so you can adjust it for the sensitivity of your teeth. It’s hard to beat the three-week battery life, which provides an opportunity to travel without packing the charger.
Clean and dry the toothbrush head after every use. Bacteria and mold can accumulate if the toothbrush isn’t properly cleaned and stored. Regularly remove the head to check for water or toothpaste at the seam, and be sure to dry it on a towel or paper towel.
Choose a model with a gentle mode if you have sensitive teeth. The rapid motion of some electric toothbrushes can sometimes be too much for people with sensitive teeth. Some models have a Gentle or Sensitive mode that slows the bristles and reduces irritation.
Tough, basic cleaning power
This the model to buy if you’re on a budget, but don’t let the low price fool you. This toothbrush still has excellent cleaning power. The Smartimer keeps you brushing the recommended length of time while the sonic technology and 31,000 movements per minute do their work.
Sonicare produces some excellent toothbrushes, so narrowing them down to our top five was no easy task. Here are a couple that didn’t quite make the list but are worth considering.
The Sonicare DiamondClean Smart Electric Toothbrush packs a powerful teeth-cleaning punch. Bluetooth technology lets you track your brushing habits, and the cup charger looks classy and doubles as a rinsing cup. We also love the sleek carrying case to keep it all together while you’re on the road.
And we want to mention the Sonicare for Kids Electric Toothbrush, in case the youngest members of your family are ready for an electric model. The smaller head and handle design helps kids stay in control. It’s Bluetooth-enabled and comes with an app that lets kids interact with fun characters while they brush.
Q. Can a toothbrush have both a Quadpacer and a Smartimer?
A. Some older models only have a Smartimer while newer models have both.
Q. Do Sonicare toothbrushes come with a cover to keep the brush head clean while not in use?
A. Yes. Electric toothbrushes come with a plastic cover that should be put on the toothbrush after it has dried to protect it from bathroom germs and bacteria.
Q. How often should I replace the toothbrush head?
A. Because of wear and tear on the brush head, Sonicare and dentists recommend replacing it every three months.
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