The 10 Very Best Electric Toothbrushes (2024)

best in class

Including rotating, oscillating, and sonic toothbrushes.

By Arielle Avila, a writer at the Strategist covering wardrobe basics and personal care. She joined the Strategist in 2020 as a junior writer. Previously, she wrote about style at Texas Monthly.

Additional Reporting by Karen Iorio Adelson, Ambar Pardilla, and Jenna Milliner-Waddell

The 10 Very Best Electric Toothbrushes (2)

Photo: Marcus McDonald

The 10 Very Best Electric Toothbrushes (3)

Photo: Marcus McDonald

In this article

  • Best overall
  • Best app-enabled
  • Best Sonicare
  • Longest battery life
  • Best with water flosser
  • Nicest looking
  • Best for kids

As the Strategist’s personal-hygiene writer, I find brushing my teeth is much more enjoyable with an electric toothbrush. Plus, it’s nice knowing I’m always getting a thorough brush thanks to quadrant timers and pressure sensors. Buying an electric toothbrush doesn’t have to be expensive, either: There are plenty of budget-friendly options out there as well as souped-up models for anyone obsessed with tracking their health stats.

Many dentists think electric toothbrushes have a slight edge over manual ones because they can be better at reducing plaque, gingivitis, and the risk of gum recession since they lessen the force we put into cleaning our teeth and gums. When shopping for an electric toothbrush, start with a model that has an ADA Seal of Acceptance to make sure it’s safe and effective when used as directed. After that, you shouldn’t really stress — at least not when it comes to picking among the dentist-approved electric options. Sonya Krasilnikov, a dentist and co-founder of Dental House, says, “Choosing between Sonicare and Oral-B is like picking between a Mercedes and a BMW. It’s mostly personal preference.” Since the differences between them can be so subtle, to put together this guide, I brushed my own teeth with some of the dentist-recommended picks below and tested features like pressure sensors, two-minute quadrant timers, and more.

What we’re looking for

Brush movement

Electric toothbrushes tend to fall into three camps: rotating, oscillating, and sonic. “Rotating or rotary toothbrushes have small circular heads that rotate back and forth to clean each tooth, and there’s sonic toothbrushes that have vibrating brush heads that move the bristles side to side at really high speeds, sometimes up to frequencies of 50,000 movements per minute,” says Dr.Cooper. Sometimes you will hear oscillating and rotating used interchangeably because they both refer to the actual movement of the bristles — unlike sonic which refers to the vibration of bristles — but rotating indicates movement in a circle while oscillating refers to a side to side motion. Some dentists say that one isn’t necessarily better than the other, while others appreciate the power of sonic slightly more. Dentist Sharon Huang of Les Belles NYC explains that sonic toothbrushes use a sonic wave to dislodge debris all on its own, which she likes because it requires less force to get the job done. “The rotation mechanism, you actually have to touch the tooth and it’s rotating and it’s helping you clean it,” she says. “The sonic toothbrush has a sonic wave. So if you’re in the vicinity, and you’re not even touching your tooth, it’s supposed to be dislodging bacteria.” The sweet spot is a toothbrush that does it all, but orthodontist Janet Stoess-Allen, says that because teeth are curved, “rotating heads are more effective in getting to all sides of them.”

Bristles

“Hard-bristled toothbrushes are wonderful if you’re going to clean the grout from your bathroom tile, but they’re not for use in the mouth,” says Messina, who explains that harder bristles can damage gums and enamel. Every expert we spoke with said a soft-bristle brush was the way to go in all cases, but especially if you have sensitive teeth and gums.

Pressure sensor

Brushing too hard can be just as damaging as brushing with too hard of bristles, which is why dentist Inna Chern likes brushes with pressure sensors that beep or stop moving when you’re being too aggressive to “eliminate the possibility of overzealous brushing.” A pressure sensor shouldn’t make or break your decision when deciding on what brush to go with, but Huang does think it’s a good idea for people switching from a manual brushes to an electric one for the first time who might be used to be putting some extra umph behind their strokes, which electric toothbrushes don’t require.

Timer

Built-in timers are more standard than pressure sensors and a little more essential. Leonard Umanoff of Brooklyn-based LuxDen, recommends toothbrushes that have a built-in timer, as this helps make sure you’re brushing long enough to adequately get rid of plaque. Some will just run for the recommended two minutes,while others have a quadrant timer that will alert every 30 seconds when it’s time to move to the next quadrant of your mouth.

Brush-head size

The consensus is that the smaller the brush head the better. Chern says it’s a good pick “if your mouth is on the smaller side or you have gagging issues.” It also makes it easier to reach your molars, a hard to clean area that people often miss, according to Dentist Hemita Klose of West Village Dental Studio. There are a few cases where a larger head might be better. Orthodontist Heather Kunen reminds us that a toothbrush is only as good as it’s operator, so for brushers who are less meticulous about moving a small brush around every corner of each tooth, they’ll benefit from a broader head.

Best electric toothbrush overall

Brush movement: Rotating, oscillating, and sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: Yes | Timer: Yes | Brush-head size: Small

While the Oral-B Pro 1000 is a pretty basic and affordable entry-level electric toothbrush (high-end models could run you upwards of $300), it has all the main features dentists recommend. That’s why I bought this toothbrush myself back in 2020 when I first upgraded from a manual one. I have since upgraded again —more on that below —but revisited the Pro 1000 for testing. In the past three months, my teeth feel as squeaky clean as they do with my souped-up toothbrush. While I miss the tracking capabilities of my current model, all of the features that make brushing with an electric toothbrush easier and more effective are here: The built-in two-minute quadrant timer vibrates every 30 seconds, and the pressure sensor stops the pulsation if I’m brushing too hard. Oral-B brushes are known for their small round heads, which allow me to brush around each tooth.

Cosmetic dentist Lana Rozenberg likes that Oral-B brushes generally “have more features” and are “more advanced than the others.” They have a slight edge over competing popular electric toothbrushes because they rotate, oscillate, and pulsate (or vibrate), combining all three technologies. This brush can rotate 44,000 times per minute, which dentist Jonathan Levine says causes “a lot of disruption of plaque.” According to the Oral-B website, all of its round toothbrush heads rotate 45 degrees to the rightand back to 45 degrees to the left, as well as oscillate back and forth.

The 10 Very Best Electric Toothbrushes (6)

Brushing with the Oral-B Pro 1000. Photo: Arielle Ava

Best less-expensive electric toothbrush

Brush movement: Rotating and oscillating | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: No | Timer: No | Brush-head size: Large

If you want to try out an electric toothbrush without dropping a lot of cash, this is one of the few ADA-approved models you’ll find in the drugstore. Unlike the Oral-B Pro 1000, it doesn’t have a timer or pressure sensor, but Levine says it’s “a good starting point, good for travel, and better than manual.” The brush head moves in two directions: The top part rotates in a circle while the bottom bristles oscillate up and down. The bristles are soft and conveniently change color when it’s time for a new head. This brush is battery-operated, which certainly has its cons, but, as opposed to others on this list that will just be dead when their internal battery dies, this toothbrush’s AA batteries are at least replaceable. That might be the only thing you can fix though. Low-cost brushes tend to be “disposable in the sense that you’ve got plastic mechanical parts … and those will wear out,” Messina says.

Best app-enabled electric toothbrush

Oral-B iO Series 8 Toothbrush

$230

$250

now 8% off

$230

Brush movement: Rotating, oscillating, and sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: Yes | Timer: Yes | Brush-head size: Small

I upgraded from my Oral-B Pro 1000 to its newer iO Series toothbrush about a year ago. Off the bat, it’s a much sleeker model, with its OLED display on the brush handle and magnetic charging stand, but its souped-up features stand out most. Like the Pro 1000, it combines rotating, oscillating, and sonic technology, plus a two-minute quadrant timer to make sure you’re brushing the right amount of time. Rather than one mode, it comes with seven: daily clean, gum care, sensitive, super-sensitive, whitening, intense, and tongue clean. I personally use the two-minute daily-clean setting twice a day, which leaves my teeth feeling squeaky clean. And the less-intense 30-second tongue-clean mode got me in the habit of brushing my tongue more regularly (I try to use it at least every other day). I now have fresher breath than when I was brushing my teeth and swishing around mouthwash.The toothbrush’s pressure sensor is more advanced, too. A light at the top of the brush turns red if you’re brushing too hard, white if you’re not brushing hard enough, and green if you’re brushing just right. What I found most helpful, however, is the app it uses to track brushing habits. The toothbrush uses an AI technology called 3D Tracking to show real-time feedback on the app: a rendering of your teeth progressively gets whiter until it tells you that section is fully cleaned. Over time, you can see your progress on the app too. It tells you which spots you frequently miss, so you can easily change bad brushing habits. While it is pricey, I think it’s worth a splurge if you’re wanting a high-tech option.

Best less-expensive app-enabled electric toothbrush

Brush movement: Rotating, oscillating, and sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: Yes | Timer: Yes | Brush-head size: Small

For $70 less, Strategist associate editor Jenna Milliner-Waddell recommends the slightly older Oral-B 8000. It also features a light-up pressure sensor that turns red if you’re brushing too hard and Bluetooth technology for real-time feedback on your brushing habits. Rather than an AI technology that the iO uses, the 8000 relies on using your phone’s front-facing camera. You can easily see the diagnostic report using the included phone holder that suctions onto the mirror. This brush also comes with a charging case, and has six different cleaning modes. And it has a charging dock that has room for additional brush heads. All of these features made this toothbrush a standout to Pia Lieb, founder of Cosmetic Dentistry Center NYC. She’s particularlya fan of the app. “Having the app really does work because it makes you self-conscious of really brushing for two full minutes,” says Lieb, who says that most people don’t come close to the recommended time on their own.

Best Sonicare toothbrush

Brush movement: Oscillating and sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: Yes | Timer: Yes | Brush-head size: Large

Our best overall pick is an Oral-B, but for those who want to go with the other major player in the space, Sonicare, we’ve found the best option for you, too. Sonicare brushes are distinguishable from Oral-B brushes mainly by the brush head. They’re large and flat compared to Oral-B’s small round brushes and long-lasting, according to Wellspring Dental dentist Mandy Nebel, who prefers Sonicare over other brands. They don’t rotate but instead move the bristles from side to side and use more of an ultrasonic vibrational energy to disrupt plaque and tartar, aiding in the removal of gingivitis-causing, bacteria-holding compounds. This specific model —one of two from the brand accepted by the ADA — is a more entry-level Sonicare. It’s similar to the entry-level Oral-B above, our overall pick, as it has all the basics and few extras. It features a timer, a pressure sensor, and dentist-recommended soft bristles. The bonus? This brush also has a light that tells you when to replace the head.

Best electric toothbrush with long battery life

Brush movement: Sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: No | Timer: Yes | Brush-head size: Large

This toothbrush has a large, long head similar to Sonicare brushes. It doesn’t have the name recognition of some of the bigger brands, but the Pro-Sys sonic brush is marketed to dentists, and many sell it directly to patients in their offices, Levine says. Its soft bristles and oval brush head easily reach back into the mouth. It comes with five different brush heads, all variations of soft, making it safe for even the most sensitive teeth and dental implants; there are also five levels of cleaning power, meaning there are 25 potential settings on this toothbrush. The biggest standout is the battery life: While most toothbrushes on this list will last about two weeks on one charge, this one can go for about a month. If you travel often or just forget to plug yours in, you’ll rarely have to worry about traveling with your charger or about the Pro-Sys dying on you.

Best electric toothbrush and water flosser combo

Brush movement: Sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: Yes | Timer: Yes | Brush-head size: Large

If you’re shopping for an electric toothbrush and a water flosser, consider this two-in-one model that combines the best of both devices. It has three functions — brushing, flossing, and both — and two brush speeds. Compared to regular flossing, water flossing can be easier for those with limited mobility or certain dental work, like braces or implants. And it even “removes the harmful bacteria and debris deep between teeth and below the gumline that traditional brushing and dental floss can’t reach,” says Dr. Jacqueline Fulop-Goodling, an orthodontist at New York’s Dr. Smiles. But while it shouldn’t replace traditional flossing, it’s the next best thing, says Rabinovich, who uses one herself and recommends it to patients. She even says that after using it, her mouth feels like “I just had my hygienist go at it.”

Best less-expensive electric toothbrush and water flosser combo

Photo: retailer

Brush movement: Sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: Yes | Timer: Yes | Brush-head size: Large

This two-in-one flosser and toothbrush system recommended by Dr. Elisa Mello, owner of NYC Smile Design, is about $50 cheaper than the Fusion Professional model above. You won’t get the same convenience of water flossing and brushing at the same time, but if you’re looking for an all-in-one device where you have options to do both, this is a great affordable model. The brush has three sonic modes (clean, whiten, and massage for gum stimulation) and three speeds, so it actually has more brushing options than the Fusion. The flosser itself has ten different pressure settings, ranging from 10 to 100 psi, and the 22-ounce tank holds enough water to run for 90 seconds. And while the toothbrush has a two-minute quadrant timer, the flosser does not.

$120 at Best Buy Buy

Best electric toothbrush for kids

Brush movement: Rotating and oscillating | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: No | Timer: Yes | Brush head size: Small

Generally, you’ll want to wait to introduce kids to electric toothbrushes since toddlers’ gums may be too tender for bristles, Rabinovich tells us. Usually, kids’ electric toothbrushes are marketed for ages 3 and up, but Rabinovich recommends them for those older than 5. If you’re having trouble acclimating your kid to an electric toothbrush, Dr. Rashmi Ambewadikar of Astoria Smiles Pediatric Dentistry recommends starting with front teeth and moving toward the back to avoid gagging and the feeling of vibration on the tongue, and brushing small sections at a time to give them breaks. Steven C. Cohen of Livingston Smiles and Rabinovich both advise going with a brush with their favorite character or cartoons. “Are they in a Disney Princess or PAW Patrol stage? Kids are more likely to use a toothbrush with their favorite characters on it,” Rabinovich says. Cohen approves of Oral-B’s collection of kids’ brushes. This one is rechargeable andhas a sensitive brush head with soft bristles and a built-in timer.

Best less-expensive electric toothbrush for kids

$20

Brush movement: Sonic | Soft bristles: Yes | Pressure sensor: No | Timer: Yes | Brush head size: Small

Quip, a start-up toothbrush company, is known for making sleek-looking, minimalist toothbrushes at an affordable price. Rabinovich’s kids use the brand’s kids’ toothbrush, which “does offer some ultrasonic vibration, but it’s not overwhelming” for teeth that are still growing. I’ve tried the brand’s regular toothbrush in the past and can say it’s much gentler than the other ones I’ve tried on this list, but my teeth always felt clean after using it. Rabinovich says that’s because its soft bristles are surrounded by rubber massagers, which are gentler on tender gums with loose and erupting teeth. “And the subscription service for replacement heads and batteries means one less thing for me to remember to do as a parent,” Rabinovich adds. Dr. Ambewadikar also recommends Quip’s brushes for kids because its smaller handle is easier to grip. Another major benefit I found is that it doesn’t require a charging base and frees up counter space —something families sharing a bathroom might appreciate. Bonus: It comes in four bright, kid-friendly colors: blue, pink, purple, and green.

Our experts

• Inna Chern, dentist and founder of New York General Dentistry
• Steven C. Cohen, dentist at Livingston Smiles
• Ada Cooper, dentist and ADA spokesperson
• Stephanie Dumanian, owner of Park Lex 60 Dental
• Dr. Jacqueline Fulop-Goodling, orthodontist at Dr. Smiles
• Sharon Huang, dentist and founder of Les Belles NYC
• Hemita Klose, dentist at West Village Dental Studio
• Sonya Krasilnikov, dentist and co-founder of Dental House
• Heather Kunen, orthodontist at Linhart Dentistry
• Jill Lasky, dentist at Lasky Pediatric Dental
• Jonathan Levine, dentist and CEO of JBL New York City
• Pia Lieb, founder of Cosmetic Dentistry Center NYC
• Matt Messina,dentist and ADA consumer adviser
• Jenna Milliner-Waddell, Strategist associate editor
• Mandy Nebel, dentist at Wellspring Dental
• Yuliya Rabinovich, owner of Dental Muse
• Lana Rozenberg, cosmetic dentist and founder of Rozenberg Dental NYC
• Marc Schlenoff, dentist and vice-president of clinical development at Tend
• Janet Stoess-Allen, orthodontist and owner of Park Avenue Orthodntics
• Leonard Umanoff,dentist and founder of LuxDen

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

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The 10 Very Best Electric Toothbrushes
The 10 Very Best Electric Toothbrushes (2024)

FAQs

The 10 Very Best Electric Toothbrushes? ›

As the most gentle electric toothbrush that offered a near-instantaneous brighter smile with each use, the Philips Sonicare 4100 Power Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush is the clear-cut winner among this list. Not only is it fairly priced between $35 and $50 on the market but its quality is second to none.

What is the #1 dentist recommended electric toothbrush? ›

As the most gentle electric toothbrush that offered a near-instantaneous brighter smile with each use, the Philips Sonicare 4100 Power Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush is the clear-cut winner among this list. Not only is it fairly priced between $35 and $50 on the market but its quality is second to none.

What is the best electric toothbrush money can buy? ›

What is the best overall electric toothbrush? The Oral-B Pro 1000 made the top of my list due to its competitive price, cleaning power, brush timer, oscillating head and affordable replacement brush heads. It is also ADA-accepted -- meaning that the American Dental Association has deemed the brush safe and effective.

Do dentists recommend oral-B or Sonicare? ›

Sonicare's heads are large and flat compared to Oral-B's small round brushes, and they're long-lasting, according to Wellspring Dental dentist Mandy Nebel, who prefers Sonicare over other brands. This specific model — one of two from the brand accepted by the ADA — is a more entry-level Sonicare.

What is the best electric toothbrush for plaque removal? ›

  • Philips Sonicare - ProtectiveClean 6100 Rechargeable Toothbrush - White. ...
  • Philips Sonicare - 2100 Power Toothbrush, Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush - White Mint. ...
  • Oral-B - iO Series 6 Electric Toothbrush with Replacement Brush Head - Black. ...
  • Oral-B - iO Series 8 Connected Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush - Violet Ametrine.

Which is better, oral B or sonicare? ›

Nearly equal. Oral B works by oscillating and rotating while Sonicare vibrates. Both are equally effective as long as vibrations/oscillations occur at 31,000+ vibrations/oscillations per minute.

Is vibrating or rotating toothbrush better? ›

From the data of this study, researchers concluded that to maintain good plaque control and improve gingival health, the oscillating rotation electric toothbrush offers clinically relevant advantages compared to the sonic toothbrush, albeit with a small but significant difference.

Do more expensive electric toothbrushes make a difference? ›

Generally, expensive electric toothbrushes are designed with better build quality and more durable materials, which can contribute to a longer lifespan compared to cheaper models. They may also come with better warranties and customer support.

What toothbrush do dentists recommend? ›

Although toothbrushes with medium bristles have been shown to be effective at biofilm removal, the ADA recommends use of a toothbrush with soft bristles because they minimize the risk of gingival abrasion.

Are more expensive electric toothbrush worth it? ›

Dental experts often recommend expensive electric toothbrushes for those seeking advanced oral care solutions. However, experts underscore that while the price of the toothbrush plays a role, it's not the sole determinant of its effectiveness.

How to pick an electric toothbrush? ›

What to look for
  1. Powerful motor. A quality electric toothbrush does most of the “brushing” for you. ...
  2. Two-minute timer. Dentists recommend brushing for two minutes twice a day. ...
  3. Affordable refills. We prefer toothbrushes that are compatible with a wide range of affordable replacement brush heads.
Aug 18, 2023

What is better than Sonicare? ›

Oral-B is cheaper

Not only do its toothbrushes skew cheaper, replacement brush heads cost less, too. The Oral-B Pro 1000 is the company's popular entry-level model and it offers similar specs and cleaning prowess to the Sonicare ProtectiveClean 5100, which costs significantly more.

Does Oral-B remove more plaque than Sonicare? ›

Plus, an Oral-B electric toothbrush like the Oral-B Pro 1000 even removes 26% more plaque than Sonicare DiamondClean* and 100% more plaque than a regular manual toothbrush.

How can I remove stubborn plaque from my teeth at home? ›

The best way to remove plaque and tartar is to practice good oral hygiene. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. They also recommend flossing once a day. Flossing first will remove pieces of food and plaque from between the teeth and hard-to-reach areas.

How do dentist get hard plaque off teeth? ›

To perform a dental scaling, the dentist or dental hygienist will use either a hand held, manual instrument or may prefer an ultrasonic instrument. Hand Held Manual Instruments: If this is the method used, the dental professional will use s dental scaler and a curette to remove tartar from the surface of the teeth.

Which Oral-B electric toothbrush is best for periodontal disease? ›

The Bluetooth connectivity and customizable features on the Oral-B app make the Oral-B io Series 9 toothbrush a strong choice for people with receding gums or who are prone to over-brushing.

Why do dentists recommend Oral-B? ›

Historical studies show that Oral-B electric toothbrushes are more effective removing plaque than manual toothbrushes. Oral-B improves your brushing behaviours over time with customizable settings.

What type of toothbrush is the most recommended? ›

Nearly all dentists recommend a soft bristle toothbrush. In fact, if you can pick a toothbrush with extra soft bristles, it is even more beneficial. This is because a brush with soft bristles won't harm your gums and cause bleeding or irritation.

What electric toothbrush is best for sensitive teeth and gums? ›

Best for Sensitive Teeth

The Oral-B iO Series 5 toothbrush is an excellent choice for sensitive teeth, thanks to its specialized sensitivity modes and gentle brushing experience. The toothbrush offers multiple settings (sensitive, extra sensitive, intense, polish) and various intensity levels.

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