Philips Sonicare vs. Oral B
We all know that brushing our teeth, and oral hygiene is extremely important. You only get one set of teeth. So you better treat them right. Not brushing properly can lead to a host of oral health issues, some very serious, and they can even lead to more serious issues throughout your body if left unchecked.
This is why you need to brush your teeth properly. Nowadays, the electric toothbrush is the go-to option. With that being said, there are many brand names out there, but which is the best? The two most popular brand names for an electric toothbrush are Philips Sonicare and Oral B.
For the past few decades, the Philips and Oral B Braun companies have been competing for who offers better dental care products.
It is important to say that these companies don’t specialize in every oral health product out there, but rather mainly in electric toothbrushes.
In the same way that the Waterpik brand is the leader when it comes to water flossing innovations. Philips and Oral Braun are the leaders when it comes to electric toothbrushes.
As you might know, the Philips brand is recognized for its Sonicare toothbrush series while Braun offers Oral B products. Bear in mind that both are set as market leaders with their products being recommended by dentists all around the world, and it is hard to come up with the final verdict on which one is better for you.
While there are many similarities when it comes to the way these companies do business and the features that their products are highlighted by, there are also differences that may help you make your decision. It is important to note that for the most part, it all comes down to your budget and personal needs.
Along with that, we will be analyzing how their electric toothbrushes are made and what the pros and cons of both brands are. So without further ado, let’s go ahead and compare the Philips Sonicare vs Oral B.
Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
What We Were Looking For
Before we move on to the essential features, we want to give you a glimpse of the test method that we have used. What we did is set two major brushes from each brand, including items in both the affordable and high-end price bracket.
While we will not get into the specifics of these comparisons, we are rather going to review the brand as a whole. We were mostly looking for the differences in how these brushes are made as well as the performance that they allow.
With this in mind, our key points were the technology, features, accessories, noise levels, battery life and durability.
Let's dive into their key features.
The Features Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
Another thing that you might be interested in comparing between these two brand names is what kind of features they come with. Depending on how serious you are about brushing your teeth, it’s something you definitely want to keep an eye on.
To be quite honest, Sonicare electric toothbrushes really do not have all that many impressive features, per se. Now, as we have already mentioned, these toothbrushes do a great job at cleaning teeth, but in terms of overall features, this brand name does seem to be a bit lacking.
One cool feature which most Sonicare toothbrushes have is that they come with a 14 step easy start feature. This allows you to start out with some really light brushing, and then over the next few brushing sessions, it upgrades to some heavier cleaning.
Also, keep in mind that most Sonicare brushes come with 1 or 2 cleaning modes at the most, with only the highest end models featuring 5 or 6 cleaning modes. Sonicare brushes do have a couple models with Bluetooth connectivity to share and track data.
In terms of features, Oral B brushes tend to have a ton of features which are worth taking a look at. For one, an important note here is that Oral B brushes usually always come with between 4 and 6 cleaning modes, which is true even for the options that are not exactly high end.
Another great feature which most Oral B brushes come with is a pressure sensor, a very important feature which tells you if you are using too much or too little pressure for brushing. Moreover, Bluetooth connectivity, which allows you to share and keep track of brushing data, is really big with Oral B, with around 7 or 8 models currently featuring it
The bottom line here is that Oral B takes this section of features, as it simply has more of them. Yes, Sonicare brushes still have some decent features, but generally speaking, to get a hold of the best features, you need to spend a lot more cash than with Oral B. Oral B brushes often come with high-end features for a low end price.
The Technology Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
The first point of comparison which is important to look at between these two brands is what kind of technology they each employ. In other words, what kind of brushing tech is used by each brand, and how do the brush heads function to clean your teeth?
The Sonicare brand uses what is called sonic technology to brush teeth. This is quite an innovative, yet already proven method of brushing teeth, as it uses sonic vibrations in order to remove plaque, tartar, and stains. One of the biggest benefits you get here is that these sonic vibrations provide for a really deep clean and it helps take the hard work out of brushing.
The highest end Sonicare brush heads can pump out up to 31,000 sonic vibrations per minute, which is quite impressive to say the least.
At the end of the day, according to various scientific studies, Sonicare does take the lead here. Now, both brand names are shown to be highly effective at removing plaque, tart, and reducing gingivitis, but Sonicare did come out on top in terms of brushing depth and reducing gum inflammation.
In terms of the Oral B brand name, the brushing technology employed is a bit different from that of Sonicare, but it does still get the job done. Oral B electric toothbrush heads feature a rotational as well as an oscillating movement.
The vast majority of Oral B brush heads still use this combination of oscillation and rotation to achieve a fairly deep clean. Some of the newer Oral B brush heads even feature a pulsation aspect to further help dislodge plaque and remove tartar.
The highest end models can pulsate up to 40,000 times per minute and oscillate up to 8,000 times per minute.
The Accessories Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
The next point of comparison to make here has to do with the average amount, type, and quality of accessories which each respective brand name usually comes with. This might not be a key factor for all, but extra accessories can come in handy.
Sonicare electric toothbrushes come with some fairly useful accessories. Although, as seems to be the theme here, you do have to pay a fair amount of cash to get good Sonicare brush accessories. One such accessory which you might like is the UV sterilizer, which uses a special little UV light bulb to kill germs and bacteria on your brush heads.
If you are often worried about germs and bacteria, then this might be great for you. Another cool accessory that you might get with your Sonicare brush, if you are willing to spend some extra cash, is a mobile travel case and combination charger.
It’s a nifty little travel case that features a USB port for charging your brush on the go, so you don’t have to take the whole charging stand with you whenever you go out for a few days. However, generally speaking, your average Sonicare brushes really don’t come with many accessories, if any at all.
Oral B is a great option to go with if you are looking for a healthy assortment of accessories, but don’t want to pay too much cash. They usually always come with multiple brushing heads, a stand, a charger, and everything else you need to get started, and you don’t even have to spend all that much money.
No, the Oral B accessories are usually not as technologically innovative as those from Sonicare, as you really won’t see a UV sterilizer or portable charging case with Oral B. However, they do have some nifty travel cases and other small accessories.
The verdict here is kind of mixed, because as you might have gathered by now, Sonicare does have some really nifty and innovative high end accessories, but they also cost a heck of a lot of cash to purchase.
Sonicare doesn’t come with many basic accessories for a low price. On the other side of the equation, Oral B doesn’t really have high end and innovative accessories, but even their basic models come with a host of basic accessories, all for a very decent price.
The Noise Level Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
Alright, so this may not be the number one most important point of comparison, but many people do complain when their toothbrushes are way too loud. So, which brand name is quieter when brushing, Sonicare or Oral B? This one is going to be short, but concise.
Sonicare brushes, due to their sonic vibrations, which you might think sound like they would be loud, are actually not very loud at all.
Chances are that you could brush your teeth with a Sonicare in the middle of the night, bathroom door open, and nobody would hear a thing.
Yeah, there is no question about the fact that Sonicare toothbrushes are indeed much quieter than Oral B brushes, although it’s definitely not the most important point of comparison.
Oral B electric toothbrushes are indeed quite loud. Due to their rotating and oscillating brush heads, they have this fairly loud mechanical noise which is emitted.
Chances are that if you are brushing with an Oral B in the middle of the night, bathroom door open, you are probably going to wake somebody up.
The Battery Life Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
One very important point of comparison between Sonicare and Oral B, in our opinion, is how long the batteries last for on a single charge, or with a single set of disposable batteries. So, which brand name needs to be refueled less and lasts longer?
Sonicare toothbrushes, as discussed above, use sonic vibrations and have fairly quiet motors. This is then combined with their lithium ion batteries, which are very quick to charge and extremely long lasting.
Sonicare simply has out-of-this-world long-lasting batteries. Why do we say this?
Your average Sonicare toothbrush battery life is going to be between 2 and 3 weeks on a single charge, sometimes even longer depending on your specific brushing routine. Simply put, Sonicare toothbrushes have outstanding battery life.
In terms of battery life, when comparing Sonicare and Oral B toothbrushes, Sonicare has Oral B beat every single time. The batteries last a heck of a lot longer, and yes, this helps make life a bit easier for those of you that brush a lot.
Oral B toothbrushes have a much louder motor and use a mechanical brushing method which tends to use up quite a bit of battery.
Moreover, although some Oral B brushes now also use lithium ion batteries, most still use nickel metal hydride batteries, which are not all that powerful or efficient.
When using an Oral B toothbrush, and you have a good brushing routine, you might get 7 or 10 days out of a single charge at the very most.
The Durability of Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
Now, electric toothbrushes, whether Oral B or Sonicare, do cost a decent amount of money. It’s not like buying a regular toothbrush. With that being said, if you are spending a significant amount of cash on a new electric toothbrush, you probably want something that is going to last a long time to come.
So, which one of these brand names tends to be the more durable of the two?
As you might know by now, Sonicare toothbrushes tend to be the more expensive of the two, and yes, you do usually get what you pay for. Sonicare toothbrushes tend to be quite heavy and solid.
They feel like really strong and durable materials are used in their designs, ones that last for a long time to come. Dropping a Sonicare toothbrush from mouth-height, to the ground, should not break it. Moreover, Sonicare toothbrushes tend to be much more resistant to water. Most models can be fully submerged without issue.
When all has been said and done, there is really no questioning the fact that Sonicare features much more durable brushes than the Oral B brand name, but you will pay a significant amount more for them.
Oral B toothbrushes, on the other hand, do usually cost less, and once again, you get what you pay for. Now, this is not to say that Oral B toothbrushes are not decently durable, and they can easily last for 4 or 5 years.
However, in the grand scheme of things, their shells and level of water resistance just don’t hold up. Dropping your Oral B on the ground or fully submerging it in water might just spell the end of it.
The Brush Stroke of Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
What kind of brush stroke are you looking for in your electric toothbrush? Both the Philips Sonicare and Oral B have a different style of brush head and also a different brush stroke. Let's compare to see which brush stork is better.
The first question that might affect your decision is the type of electric toothbrush you are looking for. Yes, both brands offer a number of great products with Philips being highlighted by the DiamondClean Smart 9700 and Braun being highlighted by the Oral B 8000. But is the cleaning process and the main components the same?
Philips uses the concept of sonic-motion which features oval brush heads and big side-to-side movements. While not as comfortable initially, this brushing style leaves you with great results and clean, plaque-free teeth.
This style of brushing is a little different and some people find it a little uncomfortable at first, but the toothbrush does come with a setting to help you get used to it.
The Oral B electric toothbrush, is important to note that these run using a rotary-motion. What this means is that the brush heads perform circular left/right movements to thoroughly clean your teeth, removing any plaque or material that might be hiding in your mouth between your teeth.
One of the biggest benefits of this system is that you will be able to clean hard-to-reach spots and prevent cavities on your back teeth. Also, if you do as recommended and brush your teeth for at least 2 minutes, you will be able to properly clean every tooth.
Depending on which method you find more enjoyable, the cleaning motion may or may not affect your decision.
In our opinion, we think that Oral B has a leg up due to the comfortable and detailed cleaning that the rotary motion allows.
The Design Philips Sonicare vs Oral B
While it doesn’t have to be a deal-breaker, the design does matter. First of all, we looked into the build of the electric toothbrush handles. In both cases, we found that they were ergonomic and comfortable to hold for a longer period of time.
Philips Sonicare takes on a more classic design when it comes to the toothbrush. It tends to be a little bit more slim and has a more elegant design to it.
What do we mean by that? Well, in most cases (apart from the DiamondClean series where you have pink, rose gold, and black accents) Philips toothbrushes are matte white and don’t feature a lot of colored design details.
While maybe not as flashy and colorful, it certainly looks more clinical and clean.
Philips has tried to stay more professional and uniform.
Once again, it is up to you to make the final decision, but we think that the Philips Sonicare brush does a bit better when it comes to appearance and design and we found that is fit more comfortably in our hands.
It has a cleaner and more professional look to it.
The Oral B toothbrush is somewhat thicker, which is not the best if you have small hands. However, the Oral B toothbrush has experimented with more colors than the Philips Sonicare.
Oral B products are highlighted by their gloss white body and the grip that can be in almost any color including black, green, and blue.
If you are a fan of colors you might prefer the design of the Oral B
As for the front panel, both brands offer a classic appearance with the power/pressure sensor indicators and cleaning modes being included just below the on/off button.
The Electric Toothbrush High-End Battle: Oral B 8000 vs Sonicare DiamondClean
Before we get into discussing which one is better for your needs, we want to note that the Oral B 8000 model certainly wins this battle if we are talking about the number of features. Still, the question remains – are all those features really necessary?
The Sonicare is more elegant and simple, while the Oral B 8000 stands as a thicker electric toothbrush that includes a more detailed front panel. One of the main concerns with the Sonicare DiamondClean is the fact that it doesn’t put a lot of focus on the pressure sensors which can lead to consequences of aggressive brushing.
On the other hand, Oral B has got it all sorted out when it comes to pressure and tactile sensors allowing optimal customization and full control over the brush.
This is probably one of the departments where there are the most similarities. Both brushes are extremely focused on ensuring optimal gum health and plaque removal. Not to forget, these do have teeth whitening among their goals as well.
The Oral B 8000 model includes the Daily Clean, Gum Care, Sensitive, Whitening, and Pro-Clean modes. On the other hand, Philips Sonicare comes with three intensity levels as well as five modes including Clean, Polish, White, Gum Care, and Sensitive. As you can see, both brands don’t leave much room for concern.
This one doesn’t come as a surprise. The Philips Sonicare DiamondClean has a much better battery life that can perform for almost two times as long as the Oral B 8000 once it is fully charged. It also comes with a high-quality Lithium battery that doesn’t take a long time to charge.
This one is hard to answer, because it all depends on your preference. They are both just as easily portable and easy to use. However, the battery life is going to last much longer with the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean.
This all depends on whether you are more into durability or practicality. Yes, Oral B 8000 is a good choice if you enjoy brushes that come with tons of smart features and design details that may allow easy use and is a great practical choice, because it is cheaper than the DiamondClean.
On the other hand, the Sonicare DiamondClean is the product you should go for as someone who relies on optimal performance. It is the best toothbrush on the market, but it is also the most expensive.
The Electric Toothbrush Budget-Friendly Battle: Oral B Smart 5000 vs Philips Sonicare HealthyWhite
Both of these brushes are good quality and are choices that you will not regret, especially if you are someone on a modest budget. Much like with their high-end products, the Oral B model beats Sonicare when it comes to the number of features and design detail.
Once again, it is the pressure sensor that is the main difference. Along with it, Oral B Smart 5000 features great Bluetooth connectivity and an app that will track your progress and motivate you by awarding you with achievements after you finish brushing your teeth.
On the other hand, Philips Sonicare HealthyWhite features a sturdier design and a better battery that can hold for up to 3 weeks of daily use.
The Pros of Owning an Electric Toothbrush
Before we move on to the final verdict and suggestions on whether you should buy an Oral B or Philips Sonicare electric toothbrush, let’s discuss some of the benefits of owning an electric toothbrush in the first place.
- Better At Removing Plaque- First of all, electric toothbrushes do a much better job when it comes to removing plaque and bacteria from your teeth and gums. This is mostly due to the better mobility and maneuverability that electric brushes offer compared to manual ones. The pulsating cleaning that is featured in both the Sonicare and Oral B electric brushes can go a long way when it comes to those hard-to-reach spots.
- Less Waste- Another huge benefit is that you will be motivated to actually brush your teeth for those 2 minutes instead of skimping and doing a minute or just 30 seconds. Most electric toothbrushes have built-in timers and pacers that will alert you when to move on to the next part of your mouth. Also, you will be producing less waste with electric toothbrushes (better than getting a new manual toothbrush every couple of months).
- Less Toothpaste- Since the brush heads tend to be smaller you won't over use your toothpaste, which most people do when they brush with a manual toothbrush. This will help you save money.
- Easier To Use- Last but not least - electric toothbrushes are easy and fun to use!
At the end of the day, you are the one that will be making the decision. Still, we want to emphasize the importance of knowing what you need. Comparing the two market-leading brands, Philips and Braun, has led us to a conclusion that while both offer high-quality products, there are key differences that set each apart.
If you are looking for a toothbrush that is going to have a long long lasting battery and a nice clean design it is better to go with the Sonicare. If you are looking for a cheaper design, but still want a good quality toothbrush you will most likely prefer the Oral B
Whatever you decide, remember – brush and floss daily and don't forget to go visit your dentist.