The Best Electric Toothbrushes, Tested by HGTV Editors
We tested a variety of high-end, start-up and classic electric toothbrushes, tracking their features, cleaning capabilities and more, to find the best ones to introduce into your daily oral health routine.
Our Top Electric Toothbrush Picks
- Best Overall: Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 4100 Electric Toothbrush
- Runner-Up: Oral-B Pro 1000 Power Electric Toothbrush
- Best Smart: Oral-B Genius 7000 SmartSeries Electric Toothbrush
- Best Budget Smart: hum by Colgate Smart Electric Toothbrush
- Best Online Subscription: BURST Sonic Electric Toothbrush
- Best Design: Quip Electric Toothbrush
Did you know that your oral health can affect your body’s overall health? It’s true. Your mouth is full of bacteria, which is totally normal. But since your mouth is connected to your respiratory and digestive tracts, this bacteria can cause disease if you don’t practice good oral health care. The Mayo Clinic says: “Normally the body’s natural defenses … keep bacteria under control. However, without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease.” This is why it’s crucial to protect your oral health and practice good oral hygiene every day. Brushing your teeth at least twice a day is the single most important way to keep your mouth healthy.
So, now the real question: Does an electric toothbrush do a better job than a manual toothbrush? According to American Dental Association (ADA) dentist Dr. Richard Price, an electric toothbrush can be a better option if you have trouble holding a manual toothbrush. However, he says, an electric toothbrush and standard toothbrush can both do an equally great job, because “it’s not the brush — it’s the brusher.” This means that although electric toothbrushes come with touted benefits like greater plaque removal, reduced gum bleeding and whiter teeth, you still have to practice good brushing habits to reap those benefits. And since electric toothbrushes now come equipped with various brushing modes, from sensitive to gum care to whitening, and even Bluetooth capabilities to track your brushing habits, it’s easier than ever to stay on top of your oral hygiene between dentist visits.
We tested a variety of high-end, start-up and classic electric toothbrushes, tracking their features, cleaning capabilities and more, to find the best ones to introduce into your oral health routine. Shop our top picks below.
This Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean model doesn’t come with lots of bells and whistles, but that’s actually why it nabs our Best Overall spot. It’s a classic electric toothbrush that works — well. It claims to remove seven times more plaque than a manual toothbrush and helps protect teeth and gums with a pressure sensor so you avoid harmful over-brushing. (If you start brushing too hard, it responds with a pulsing sound.) It even claims to be safe on braces, fillings, crowns and veneers. Like most electric toothbrushes, it features a smart timer that buzzes in 30-second intervals and automatically shuts off after two minutes. Plus, there’s a brush-replacement indicator that reminds you it’s time to switch out your brush head. This model only offers one brush mode, but you can purchase different head options to target different hygiene concerns, like plaque, whitening, gum care and more. Plus, you can find replacement heads everywhere from Amazon to Costco with prices averaging around $9 per head in packs of two, three and even six. The 14-day battery life isn’t the longest that we tested, but it will certainly stay charged through weekend trips and extended vacations — no need to pack the charging base. Our favorite thing about this toothbrush, though, is the curved power tip that makes it so easy to reach the teeth at the back of your mouth. Overall, the affordable price tag, simple design and minimal features make this a great electric toothbrush for those looking for gentle yet effective oral care.
Our Editor Says: "It’s a classic option for a reason — it works. The Sonicare is a major upgrade from manual brushes, and it does an excellent job of cleaning my teeth. My dentist always comments on how wonderfully healthy my teeth and gums are, so my toothbrush must be working!"
Oral-B is known as the number-one brand used by dentists worldwide, so it’s no surprise that the Oral-B Pro 1000 is the runner-up to our Best Overall pick. Similar to the Philips Sonicare we tested, this classic electric toothbrush is simple yet effective, and that’s why we love it. The CrossAction brush head surrounds each tooth with bristles angled at 16 degrees, oscillating, rotating and pulsating to break up and remove up to 300 percent more plaque along the gum line than a manual toothbrush. If you start brushing too hard, the pressure sensor stops the pulsation movement, alerting you to ease off. An in-handle timer pulses every 30 seconds to let you know when to switch areas of your mouth and alerts you at the end of your two-minute brush cycle with a longer pulse. It doesn’t automatically shut off, so you can continue brushing beyond the two-minute limit. Like our Best Overall pick, the Oral-B Pro 1000 offers one brush mode — Daily Clean. You can, however, purchase replacement heads to target specific hygiene concerns, like Sensitive Clean, Precision Clean, ProWhite and FlossAction. Replacement brush heads are a bit cheaper than the Philips Sonicare too, averaging around $6 per head in packs up to 20. Instead of an indicator light that reminds you to change brush heads, the Oral-B features indicator bristles that fade in color when it’s time to change them. We found this method to be a less effective technique compared to other electric toothbrushes we tested. And although we love this classic model, it did offer the lowest battery life of just seven days. Overall, we prefer the round brush head to the oblong brush head because it feels like it’s removing plaque, tartar and food without an overly-aggressive vibration.
Our Editor Says: "I like the round brush head because it feels like it gets in the nooks and crannies better than an oblong brush. I can really feel it oscillating in my mouth."
If you’re looking for a dentist-inspired clean and the high-tech capabilities of a smart device without spending hundreds of dollars, the Oral-B Genius 7000 is a great pick. With the ADA’s seal of approval for oscillating-rotating-pulsating brushes, this electric toothbrush helps remove plaque 500 percent more than a manual toothbrush and helps prevent gingivitis. Bluetooth connectivity allows the brush to connect with your smartphone to give you real-time feedback on your brushing habits and senses when you brush too hard. It even tracks other optional habits, like flossing, tongue cleaning and mouth rinsing. You can choose to sync your brushing data to the Apple Health app and schedule reminders for when it’s time to change out your brush head, too. This electric toothbrush has a whopping six brush modes: Daily Clean, Deep Clean, Sensitive, Whitening, Massage and Tongue Cleaning. Until you memorize the order of the various modes, the app is also helpful for knowing which mode is which, since the brush itself doesn’t have a display indicator for the different modes. Just like the other electric toothbrushes we tested, the brush’s vibration patterns notify you every 30 seconds when it’s time to switch quadrants with a default two-minute session. (You can customize the length of a brushing session in the app and even change the interval breakdown from four quadrants to six.) There are several Oral-B brush heads to choose from that are compatible with this toothbrush, and they’re easy to swap out. In fact, the initial toothbrush set comes with three brush heads: a Cross-Action brush head, featuring angled bristles for a more precise clean; a ProWhite whitening brush head; and a Sensitive Gum Care brush head. Oral-B offers a replacement brush head subscription option, or you can purchase them a la carte from various retailers, averaging $10 per brush head. It’s definitely bulkier and less aesthetically pleasing than other electric toothbrush models we tried, but the basic charger does have a pretty slim footprint. We felt like it provides a deeper clean with a lot less work than a manual toothbrush, and while the vibration is pretty powerful, it doesn’t feel like too much pressure.
Our Editor Says: "I like that I can tell it cleans my teeth really well, is easy to use and the toothbrush basically does all the work for me. It's cool to be able to look back at your brushing habits, especially if you need help sticking to good habits. I do like that it has different settings so that you can switch between different intensity levels for tongue cleaning versus teeth cleaning, for example."
If you’re unsure whether a smart electric toothbrush is for you, the budget-friendly Hum by Colgate is a great introductory option. Bluetooth capability allows you to connect to a smartphone app to track the frequency, duration and coverage of your unique brushing style to help you brush better and target spots that may need extra attention. You don’t have to keep your phone by the sink either; Hum will track your progress with or without the app open and even saves your information to the Apple Health app. And if you need some motivation to improve your brushing habits, the app lets you earn points that unlock rewards, like a free 60-day trial to Headspace. Hum features powerful sonic vibrations in three modes — Normal, Sensitive and Deep Clean — so you can personalize your pulse. Like our other picks, it comes with a built-in two-minute timer and a rechargeable battery (with a 10-day battery life). An expert-designed ergonomic handle makes it easy to hold, and the sleek design and color options (we love the mint green!) look nice sitting on your bathroom counter. Replacement brush heads are the cheapest of those we tested at an average of $5 per brush head. You can even set up a subscription to receive a replacement head every three months — no reminder needed.
Our Editor Says: "This toothbrush has been one of my favorite electric toothbrushes I own. It's light, quiet, has a tongue scraper on the back and gets your teeth feeling clean. My favorite part is actually the charging stand: it's really small and doesn't get water everywhere, so it's perfect for a smaller bathroom or sink."
You’ve probably seen BURST pop up in your Instagram feed with endorsements from celebrities like Chrissy Teigen and Khloe Kardashian. This trendy oral care start-up has created an electric sonic toothbrush that looks good and works well. Its extremely powerful motor is clinically proven to remove up to 10 times more plaque than a manual toothbrush and reduce gum bleeding up to three times more than a manual toothbrush. Soft charcoal-infused bristles are specifically designed to remove surface stains, while three simple modes — Whitening, Sensitive and Massage — allow you to find the perfect option for your teeth’s needs. Like every electric toothbrush we tested, a built-in two-minute timer helps you stay on track, while 30- second pulses remind you to switch brushing quadrants. With an incredible one-month battery life, you can brush anywhere without the need to frequently charge up. While there’s no obvious or built-in reminder to change your brush head, the company offers an easy subscription service that delivers a brush head every three months for just $6, or you can buy a pack of three on Amazon. We also love the company’s lifetime warranty — while you’re subscribed to BURST, they will replace your brush free of charge if there’s ever a problem. If you’re looking to round out your oral care regimen, BURST now offers a sleek water flosser, whitening strips, toothpaste, oral probiotics and expanding floss — all environmentally-friendly with thoughtfully-curated ingredients with subscription options.
Our Editor Says: "My teeth are literally squeaky clean after brushing. It feels like I just left the dentist! Plus, I love that the built-in timer and subscription brush head replacement service encourages good oral care without me having to put in much work."
Although it wins our Best Design category, Quip is more than just a pretty (electric toothbrush) face. This editor favorite comes with all the guiding features teeth need without the wires or bulky charging base. Unlike our other picks, Quip is powered by a replaceable AAA battery or a rechargeable battery. Need one less thing to remember? You can get a $5 brush head and battery delivered — free — every three months. (We noticed, however, that the battery life can last longer than three months.) Timed sonic vibrations alert you every 30 seconds to switch quadrants and automatically turns off after two minutes, promoting and guiding good oral care. Beyond its timed brushing feature, there aren’t many bells and whistles to the Quip. We love it because it takes up basically zero space — about the same as a manual toothbrush. In fact, you can store it in a standard toothbrush holder or use the cover it comes with and mount it to a wall, mirror or cabinet in your bathroom. The vibrations of the Quip feel relatively gentle and mild, especially compared to a more powerful electric toothbrush that does a lot of the work for you. And while it does offer guiding pulses to help you spend the right amount of time brushing, you still have to move the brush and apply pressure yourself. If you’re looking for a slim, lightweight toothbrush with high-tech features, Quip now offers a smart version of their classic electric toothbrush. It’s the same sleek design yet with Bluetooth connectivity and app assistance. And as the first subscription electric toothbrush accepted by the ADA, we know it’s a trusted, top-notch pick.
Our Editor Says: "I love the sleek design of the Quip toothbrush — it looks so much better in my bathroom than a neon plastic eyesore. I also appreciate how the guiding pulses improve my brushing habits and how only replacing the brush head instead of the entire brush every few months cuts down on waste."