There are few things more beautiful than a great smile. So, it should come as no surprise the tools that help us get gorgeous grins – toothbrushes, toothpastes and whitening agents – are starting to infiltrate beauty stores.
The dental tools of today, however, are completely retooled. For example, a new oral hygiene product to enter Sephora is Issa, which Foreo, the Swedish company that makes it, bills as the first electric toothbrush entirely out of silicon. That’s right, this brush is nylon bristle-free. Instead, its silicon surface pulsates to generate friction that rids nasty stains and plaque. An added benefit is a soft massage for the gums to improve blood circulation in the soft tissues of the mouth.
Issa should be used like any manual toothbrush, but Antonius Hanegraaf, senior marketing manager for Foreo, stresses the experience of using it is quite different. It will not harsh your mellow. “A main advantage of silicon is that it is gentle. You can’t brush so hard with it,” says Hanegraaf.
“One of the biggest dental problems around the world is people are brushing too hard, and they have a retracting gum line that exposes teeth, leading to sensitivity.”
Issa isn’t cheap. At $199 for a full-sized version and $119 for a mini version ideal for children, Hanegraaf acknowledges it is above the $60 to $150 price range where he estimates most electric toothbrushes sit. He vows Issa is worth the price because it has a six-month battery life, a two-year limited warranty and a 10-year quality guarantee, and brush heads have to be replaced once annually instead of four to six times a year. Replacement brush heads are $24.90.
Issa users might just save on visits to the dentist, too. Hanegraaf says, “We are quite confident that overall oral health should be better because the cleaning and removing of plaque should be on par with standard toothbrushes, but standard toothbrushes don’t have benefits for the gums.”
Issa isn’t the only retooled toothbrush vying for mouth money. Neiman Marcus sells a Supersmile electronic toothbrush paired with whitening items for $159 that is also fueled by sonic pulses, but distinguishes itself with angled bristles, a handle ergonomically designed for comfort, and three brushing speed options. Technology and teeth become companions with the $29 Beam Toothbrush that boasts sonic power and a six-axis motion sensor to record daily brushing activity for tracking on iPhones and iPads.
Ulta’s aisles are teeming with toothbrushes. Smile savers with a stylish edge are the retailer’s beauty sweet spot. Violight has $14.99 toothbrushes accented with Zebra prints, confetti and kisses. Pop Dental’s $89.99 hot pink and polka dot-covered sonic toothbrushes are simultaneously lightweight and forceful. Pop Dental toothbrushes are available at Nordstrom as well, where 32 Oral Care is taking on bad breath with breath crystals selling for $5 to $25 developed by dentist Thomas Connelly that eliminate foul breath for up to four hours.
Another competitor for canines is Quip. The subscription service promises to remedy the scourge of poor dental upkeep (Quip reports half of Americans don’t brush their teeth twice a day) by sending customers brush head and toothpaste refills for $5 to $10 every three months after they initially buy a manual toothbrush for $5 or an electric brush for $25 to $40. Quip says its mission is to “to elevate your daily tooth-brushing chore into an engaging ritual like makeup, hair care and the rest of our daily routine.” That’s certainly something to smile about.