If you’re racking your brain for gift ideas this week, a practical present such as an electric toothbrush might be the answer. But which one to choose?
They may not be filled with the wonder of Christmas or likely to elicit a gasp upon unwrapping, but at least you know an electric toothbrush has a decent chance of being put to good use.
Whether you’re buying for a pre-teen or a tech-savvy early adopter, there’s plenty to choose from. Read on as we run through some available options tailored to who you’re buying for.
Check out all our electric toothbrush reviews.
Electric toothbrushes for kids
Getting youngsters to brush their teeth properly can be a real challenge, especially if they’re using a manual toothbrush. But the simpler mechanics of an electric toothbrush can make it easier for children to master the task.
Philips Sonicare for Kids
Some electric toothbrushes aimed at children now come with features and functions that help keep them entertained while they brush. The Philips Sonicare for Kids (HX6322/04), for example, can connect to a game within an app that lets your kids earn points and prizes each time they brush. But it costs close to £50.
A cheaper alternative, minus the frills, is the Oral-B Junior (£25), which is aimed at children aged six and over. It has a handy two-minute timer to encourage children to brush for the dentist-recommended amount of time. The two minutes is divided up by a ‘quad pacer’, which makes the brush buzz every 30 seconds to let the user know they should start brushing a different section of their mouth.
If you find getting your child to brush for long enough is a real chore, this feature can help keep them on track. Check out our Oral-B Junior first look review to see what we made of this electric toothbrush.
Colgate Extra Soft
If you don’t want to spend that much, but still want an alternative to a manual one, you might have seen the Colgate Extra Soft AAA battery-powered option (£3.50, available with Barbie, Trolls and Minions branding).
We haven’t tested that model, but we have tested the Colgate 360° Whole Mouth Clean electric toothbrush, which also runs off two AAA batteries.
See our Colgate 360° Whole Mouth Clean electric toothbrush review to find out how well a replaceable battery-powered toothbrush fares in our tough tests.
Basic electric toothbrushes
Minimalists can be easy to buy for, but you’ll still want to make sure you pick an electric toothbrush that nails the basics.
You can skip past the high-end electric toothbrushes with smartphone compatibility and additional brushing modes, and go straight to the no-frills models.
Oral-B Pro 600
The Oral-B Pro 600 is one such toothbrush. It costs around £25, but you still get a two-minute timer and an internal pressure sensor that reduces the speed of the motor until the normal amount of applied pressure is resumed.
Features such as that can help someone develop brushing habits that’ll get them a sticker from the dentist on their next visit.
Our Oral-B Pro 600 Cross Action electric toothbrush review reveals how good it is at removing plaque and shows how long the battery charge will last.
Superdrug ProCare Advanced Clean
Superdrug’s own-brand electric toothbrush, the ProCare Advanced Clean, is another straightforward model. It’s currently half price (£14.98), so could be the one if you’re on a tighter budget.
A two-minute timer is the only extra function, just what the no-nonsense Spartan in your life wants. Read our Superdrug ProCare Advanced Clean electric toothbrush review to find out if it’s a genuine bargain or money down the drain.
On a small budget? Our rundown of the top five cheap electric toothbrushes can help narrow things down.
Smart electric toothbrushes
At the upper-end of the market is the new generation of Bluetooth-compatible electric toothbrushes that connect with smartphone apps.
With in-app brushing tips and guidance, it’s claimed these toothbrushes can help take your oral hygiene routine to another level. There’s enough in these apps to keep the nuttiest of tech nuts busy for a while.
These expensive electric toothbrushes typically come with additional brush heads, multiple brushing modes, pressure sensor, travel case and more. Some Philips Sonicare models even come with a tumbler that doubles as a rinsing glass and inductive charger.
Oral-B Genius 9000
The Oral-B Genius 9000 was one of the first smart electric toothbrushes on the market. It’s still widely available and is now one of the cheaper smart options you’ll find, although it will still set you back around £110.
But that’s almost a steal when you compare it with Oral-B’s latest release, the iO, which costs between £180 and £250, depending on the model you buy.
Be sure to check out our Oral-B Genius 9000 review before deciding to opt for this high-end electric toothbrush.
Which? has tested electric toothbrushes for 57 years
- We did our first test of electric toothbrushes back in December 1963, and although prices and technology have changed a fair bit since then, our dedication to rigorous testing has remained the same.
- During our tests we collect more than 2,000 before-and-after plaque readings, so we can tell you exactly which toothbrushes will do the best job of keeping your teeth clean and healthy. Some brushes only manage a paltry two stars in this part of the test, while the best brushes achieve five-star ratings.
- We also check to see how long it takes for the battery to recharge. The fastest go from flat to full charge in under six hours, while the slowest can take more than 32 hours to fully recharge.
Read our guide to find out more about how we test electric toothbrushes.
Prices correct as of 14 December 2020.