The 8 Best Electric Toothbrushes of 2020

Take care of your oral health with our top picks

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First Look

Best Overall: Philips Sonicare 4100 Electric Toothbrush at Amazon

"This sonic powerhouse has your daily oral care covered and a brighter smile is all but guaranteed."

Best for Travel: Oral-B The IO series at Ulta

"The high-design doesn’t deceive and is just a taste of the high-end brushing performance inside."

Best for Sensitive and Receding Gums: Sonicare Flexcare platinum at Amazon

"The pressure sensor and timer make it a premium tool for effective oral care."

Best for Sensitive Teeth: Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 5100 at Best Buy

"It protects your pearly whites with a pressure sensor that gently pulses at the first sign of brushing too hard."

Best for Whiter Teeth: Philips Sonicare HealthyWhite+ at Amazon

"There’s no reason to choose between aesthetics and health for teeth with this Philips Sonicare brush, which whitens teeth in days."

Best for Dental Work: Philips Sonicare FlexCare+ rechargeable electric toothbrush at Amazon

"The brush head boasts up to 62000 brush strokes per minute and a dynamic fluid action that cleans between teeth and along the gumline."

Best Budget: Oral B Pro-1000 at Amazon

"A professional-level electric toothbrush doesn’t have to come with a pro price tags, and this model is proof."

Best for Kids: Philips Sonicare for Kids at Amazon

"Parents can rest easy with brushing stats thanks to the brush’s Bluetooth connectivity and app that tracks it all."

Healthy teeth are the foundation for a bright, shiny smile. Neglecting your dental health is simply not an option, and when you only see a dentist twice a year, you need to take oral hygiene matters into your own hands. In fact, a 2018 survey conducted by the American Dental Association found that 85 percent of Americans believe oral health is incredibly important to their overall wellbeing, yet only 25 percent are satisfied with their teeth.

The good news is that there are easy and effective ways to up your oral hygiene at home and diminish that gap. Rob Raimondi, D.D.S. and co-founder of One Manhattan Dental, is a big advocate of electric toothbrushes. “Premium electric toothbrushes are our go-to recommendation for almost all of our patients in our practice,” he says.

Specifically, he says to look for “brushes with timers and pressure indicators to tell you if you are brushing too hard. And on their own, independent of your effort, brush effectively.” A great electric toothbrush with those features is essentially fool-proof.

“All you need to do is apply toothpaste and move the brush around your mouth slowly,” says Dr. Raimondi. “They are able to reach difficult areas like the most posterior parts of your mouth that are very hard to clean with other brushes. Since these are the most effective brushes at cleaning they are also the best at keeping your smile looking bright and clean.”

Dr. Raimondi says that everyone can benefit from an electric toothbrush, as they are recommended for all ages and even those with sensitive teeth. “Electric toothbrushes are generally better for people with sensitive teeth because they have controls that make them different strengths,” says Dr. Raimondi. “They are more efficient at brushing than manual toothbrushes therefore they can brush better with less effort.”

Looking to up your dental hygiene game? Here are a few of the best electric toothbrushes on the market.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Philips Sonicare 4100 Electric Toothbrush

This sonic powerhouse has your daily oral care covered and a brighter smile is all but guaranteed. It features the Philips pressure sensor to encourage gentle brushing technique to protect your teeth and gums from damage. Hitting the dentist-recommended cleaning is a breeze with the two-minute smart timer and quadrant pacer. 

The brush keeps a steady charge for 14 days, so no need to tote the charger everywhere you go.

Best for Travel: Oral-B The IO series

oral-b io series 9
Courtesy of Best Buy.

Feel free to judge this sleek electric toothbrush on appearance. The high-design doesn’t deceive and is just a taste of the high-end brushing performance inside. It comes with a charging travel case and an impressive battery life of over two weeks. When it does need more juice, the magnetic charger gets it zipping again in no time.

Another plus, the round brush head got a redesign with twisted bristle that hit every nook and cranny for a truly deep clean.

Best for Sensitive and Receding Gums: Sonicare Flexcare platinum

This Sonicare model is one of Dr. Raimondi’s top recommendations for patients at his practice. The pressure sensor and timer make it a premium tool for effective oral care, hence the platinum name. It cleans between teeth and along the gumline with sonic technology and the AdaptiveClean brush head, which follows the unique shape of each individual tooth and the gums. That means up to four times more surface contact and up to 10 times more plaque removal along the gum line and between teeth. Plus, the brushing experience is totally customizable with two modes and three intensities.

Best for Sensitive Teeth: Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 5100

Philips Protective Clean

The most sensitive teeth can stay clean and comfortable with the Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 5100. It protects your pearly whites with a pressure sensor that gently pulses at the first sign of brushing too hard. “Electric toothbrushes are more efficient at brushing than manual toothbrushes therefore they can brush better with less effort and sensitivity,” according to Dr. Raimondi. The brush head replacement reminder ensures the tool is at its best whenever you need it. Personalize your brushing experience with 3 modes: Clean, White and Gum Care.

The Smartimer with QuadPacer also ensures each mode makes for a dentist recommended two-minute brush time and a consistent clean.

Best for Whiter Teeth: Philips Sonicare HealthyWhite+

There’s no reason to choose between aesthetics and health for teeth with this Philips Sonicare brush, which whitens teeth in days. The Philips Sonicare HealthyWhite+ works to whiten away stains caused by food and drinks that are acidic and/or deeply colored. Common culprits are red wine, coffee, dark chocolate, and berries. A lifetime of discoloration can vanish, and according to the manufacturer, it cleans "up to 100 percent more stains in only one week versus a manual toothbrush.”

It also ensures the whitening power is evenly distributed with the QuadPacer, which alerts when you've spent just the right amount of time cleaning each part of your mouth.

Best for Dental Work: Philips Sonicare FlexCare+ rechargeable electric toothbrush

While most toothbrushes require direct contact with the tooth surface to clean, this Sonicare operates at such a high frequency that it blasts plaque off the teeth without actually touching a single one. The brush head boasts up to 62000 brush strokes per minute and a dynamic fluid action that cleans between teeth and along the gumline.

There are also a variety of brush-heads making it super versatile. On top of all that, it comes with a quadrant timer for the recommended brushing time.

Best Budget: Oral B Pro-1000

A professional-level electric toothbrush doesn’t have to come with a pro price tags, and this model is proof. It removes more plaque than an ordinary manual toothbrush and it doesn’t skimp on the features dentists recommend. It has a pressure sensor and alert for brushing too hard and the timer sends a pulse through the handle every 30 seconds to let you know when to move to a different area of the mouth.

Best for Kids: Philips Sonicare for Kids

Put an electric brush in your kiddo’s hands, and a chore transforms into play with the click of a button. “Electric toothbrushes are better for children again because they have built-in timers,” says Dr. Raimondi. “Children are notorious for brushing for much shorter than they are supposed to. Some of the children-focused brushes can make it more fun for them to use, too.” Add this child-friendly Sonicare to their routine, and their oral health will improve as well.

Its high-tech features help little teeth and kids who don’t love brushing. It has stickers to make the experience fun and dual cleaning modes connected to an interactive app to encourage lengthy brushing. Parents can rest easy with brushing stats thanks to the brush’s Bluetooth connectivity and app that tracks it all.

Final Verdict

Two brands stand out among the bristles for Dr. Raimondi: Sonicare and Oral-B. The top electric toothbrush is the Philips Sonicare 4100 Electric Toothbrush, which boasts all the dentist-recommended features for healthy teeth and gums. The Oral-B The IO series is another all-star that looks sleek in the bathroom cabinet and makes teeth shine like the star it is.

What to Look for in an Electric Toothbrush

Price: When it comes to electric toothbrushes, you get what you pay for. “Most inexpensive electric toothbrushes are typically below $50,” says Dr. Raimondi. “It is important to know that these are not much more effective than a manual toothbrush, the effectiveness of these are still highly dependent on your ability to clean and your attention to detail.” He recommends avoiding toothbrushes like Quip or the Crest Spin Brush for this very reason.

Top of the line electric toothbrushes can cost from $100 to $300. These models come with all the dentist-recommended features that make brushing easier and more effective. 

Automation: Timers, alerts, and multiple settings may seem like unnecessary bells and whistles, but these features actually make a big difference in your oral health. Timers ensure an effective and full cleaning, especially for keeping kids accountable. “Electric toothbrushes are generally better for people with sensitive teeth because they have controls that make them different strengths,” says Dr. Raimondi.

Plus, some brushes have Bluetooth connectivity, so brushing stats are recorded in an app. It’s just like a fitness tracker for your teeth to keep you or your kids accountable.

Brush heads: What’s inside and what’s outside the electric toothbrush definitely count. The brush head comes in contact with teeth and does all the actual cleaning, so you want to be sure it has what it takes. There are specialty brush heads, like the Oral B Ortho, made to work around braces and other orthodontia with ease as well as designs for comfort and sensitive teeth.

Why Trust Verywell Health

As a seasoned health writer, Jennifer Nied understands how vital quality product recommendations are for treating symptoms safely and effectively at home. For over 10 years, she has reviewed products, interviewed experts, scrutinized ingredients, and pored over research studies and claims, to help readers like you understand what works for your specific conditions. Every product in this piece was selected taking into account recommendations from doctors, published research, and real customer reviews.

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  1. Survey: More Americans want to visit the dentist. American Dental Association. 2018. https://www.ada.org/en/publications/ada-news/2018-archive/march/survey-more-americans-want-to-visit-the-dentist