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The Best Alternatives to Philips Sonicare Toothbrushes

A man, a child, and a woman brush their teeth.

Philips Sonicare toothbrushes use special technology to make cleaning your teeth easier and more effective. They don’t come cheap, though. Fortunately, there are some more affordable alternatives to the Sonicare line that provide the same benefits!

Sonic toothbrushes have become increasingly popular in recent years due to their speed and superior cleaning ability. We’ll discuss how they work below, as well as what the best alternatives are to the pricey Philips Sonicare models.

How Sonic Toothbrushes Work

All electric toothbrushes clean your teeth with either vibrating or rotating bristles. Oscillating rotary brushes (commonly used by Oral-B) have small circular heads that rotate to clean each tooth. The extra motion can really help clean between the nooks and crannies of your teeth.

Another form of electric toothbrushes is the sonic toothbrush. These move their brush heads from side to side at extremely high speeds. Sonic brushes typically vibrate about 260 times per second, or about 31,000 brush strokes per minute.

For comparison, the average electric toothbrush rotates at about 5,000 strokes per minute, and manual brushing results is about 300 brush strokes per minute. Ultrasonic models can have frequencies in the millions.

Sure, you can brush your teeth effectively with a cheap, manual toothbrush, but sonic models make the process a bit more efficient. Those high vibrations help break up plaque and food debris, so less gunk stays stuck on, or in-between, your teeth.

You’ll still need to brush twice per day, floss daily, and visit the dentist regularly to keep your mouth healthy—even the most awesome toothbrush in the world will never replace that.

However, if you hate brushing or want to improve your routine, a sonic toothbrush can make the process a lot more effective. Unfortunately, the popular Philips Sonicare toothbrushes cost anywhere from $50-$300, depending on the model.

That’s why we searched high and low (on the internet, anyway) for the best alternatives at much lower price points.

Best Overall: Fairywill UltraSonic Powered Electric Toothbrush

A black sonic toothbrush with three extra heads sits next to a woman brushing her teeth.

The Fairywill UltraSonic Powered Electric Toothbrush has over 60,000 reviews on Amazon, the vast majority of which are positive. This brush has been accepted by the American Dental Association as a safe and effective way to remove plaque and help reduce gingivitis.

You’ll get 40,000 brushes per minute for a powerful clean every time you use it. One four-hour charge will last for about 30 days of use, making it easy to use at home and take on trips without worrying about a charger.

It also features five different brushing modes that adjust based on your teeth and gum sensitivity to help you find the most comfortable clean. The built-in timer will help you make sure you’re brushing for the recommended two minutes each time.

This set comes with four brush heads, each of which should be replaced every three months. The blue bristles will begin to fade when it’s time to replace, which is yet another useful feature. Overall, this is one of the best sonic toothbrushes you can buy.

Best Value: ATMOKO Sonic Electric Toothbrush

A black sonic toothbrush with seven brush heads sits next to a dentist showing how to use the toothbrush.

The ATMOKO Sonic Electric Toothbrush kit comes with 6 normal brush heads, 1 tongue scraper head, and 1 interdental brush head all for a low price. That’s almost two years of use before you’ll need to replace anything, making it the best value on this list.

Like the previous option, this model also generates 40,000 brush strokes per minute and has a long-lasting charge. It doesn’t have a base to sit on, which some users found annoying, but the entire thing is waterproof so you don’t have to worry about resting it near the sink.

This brush also has a two-minute timer while brushing, that pauses every 20-30 seconds to remind you to switch to a different part of your mouth. You won’t get any reminders to change out the brush heads, though, so make sure to write it down. Ideally, you should replace them every three months to keep cleaning effectively.

Best with Wireless Charging: AquaSonic Black Series Ultra-Whitening Toothbrush

A black sonic toothbrush with a wireless charger sits next to a man brushing his teeth.

The AquaSonic Black Series Ultra Whitening Toothbrush doesn’t require a USB cord to charge like many other versions. This makes it great for people who are always misplacing things like cords and hate trying to hunt them down.

It also makes this brush great for long trips (each charge lasts about a month) or when moving. One less thing to worry about, right?

This option includes many of the same features as the others on this list. You get 40,000 vibrations per minute, brushing timers, and four different operation modes. The set also comes with eight brush heads that will last you over two years. It’s also accepted by the American Dental Association.

Best with Wireless Charging

Best for Kids: Fairywill 2001 Kids Sonic Electric Toothbrush

A yellow and blue sonic toothbrush sits next to a child brushing their teeth.

If you have a kid who hates brushing his or her teeth, a vibrating sonic model might just be interesting enough to get them into the daily habit. The Fairywill 2001 Kids Sonic Electric Toothbrush has a smaller head and softer bristles, so it’s safe for your child’s mouth.

It also vibrates at a slightly lower frequency (38,000 brushstrokes per minute) to ensure it doesn’t harm their softer gums.

Kids will like the bright, colorful design of this model. It also has three brush modes for ages 3-12, and older. The handy timer will let them know if they’re brushing long enough. The handle is slimmer and easier for your child to grip than adult sizes.

Pair it with a great-tasting toothpaste, and they might actually look forward to brushing!

Anne Taylor Anne Taylor
Anne Taylor is a writer with a BA in Journalism and a passion for storytelling. Her work has been published on a variety of websites including Mental Floss and Well + Good, and she recently published her first novel, What it Takes to Lose. When she's not writing, Anne loves to travel (19 countries and counting), spend time outside, and play with her dog, Pepper. Read Full Bio »
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