Written by Cheryl Tan
It’s definitely a new situation, reviewing a toothbrush, but after hearing that the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Smart electric toothbrush is claimed to remove 100% more stains in three days, I thought I should give it a go.
Plenty of things stain our teeth, food, coffee, smoking and more. I’m a big coffee drinker, so I thought this would be a good test to see whether the Philips Sonicare toothbrushes are as good as I’ve heard.
In the box, you get a whole bunch of items. The handle, three brush heads, one tongue brush, a glass cup that sits on top of the charger for inductively charging the handle and a travel case that looks and feels pretty premium.
Since I was planning to just check out the stain removal feature, I went for the premium white brush head. One feature about this toothbrush is that there are chips in each brush head so that once one is clicked on, the handle automatically detects and sets itself to the appropriate mode and intensity.
Thanks to the chip, you even get to see approximately how many more brushing session each head can last for, and when it’s time to change the head. There’s a non-smart model, which doesn’t utilise the app, but I can confidently say that the app is a definite value-add.
You get to see a seven-day overview of how many times you’ve brushed in a day (the recommended minimum is twice), how long you’ve brushed for, whether you’re applying appropriate pressure and if you’re scrubbing too vigorously.
The handle vibrates with a flashing purple light at the base if you’re pressing too hard against your teeth or if you’re scrubbing too quickly, and the app will also have a popup to tell you to decrease the pressure.
For a more macro view, there’s a “Today” tab which allows you to see data from individual brushing sessions within the current day. Now, there are some problems with this system. If you’re a night owl like me, you’ll end up brushing your teeth past midnight and thus, it’ll register as you having skipped a brushing session for that day and log it as a new day instead.
It’s not that bad if you know you’re brushing twice daily, but it definitely doesn’t reflect on the app. Aside from that, if you don’t have the app open when you’re brushing your teeth, it won’t register either. But I do like the guidance if you use the app while brushing. The toothbrush segments the mouth into quadrants, and you get a set amount of time for each quadrant, for a total of 2:30 minutes each session.
You’re able to customise this in the settings by detailing which parts of your teeth require extra attention, and the brush handle vibrates to inform you to move the brush to another segment once it’s done. Unfortunately, another gripe I had was that you only have a single vibration for the sides, meaning if you’re prone to zoning out while brushing your teeth, you end up only brushing the outside or inside of your molars and premolars because there’s no reminder to switch sides, only to move onto the next segment.
I ended up countering that by doing a quick countdown from 10 to zero before flipping to the other side, but there were still moments when I tuned out and missed brushing one side. Thankfully, there’s a touch-up function, and after the initial session, you’re able to power on the brush to just focus on the parts you missed.
But don’t take our word for it. We took before and after photos to compare, so here they are. Unfortunately, we have to apologise that the before photo is slightly out of focus and that the lighting isn’t 100% consistent between the photos, but minor differences can be seen.
There was a bit of staining on my front teeth near the gumline previously, but in the after photo, my teeth are a more uniform white now.
Philips previously did a nation-wide survey, and 80% of the respondents believe that the whiter their teeth are, the more attractive others will find them. I can’t speak to the truth of that, but I definitely do agree that having whiter teeth makes me more willing to smile, so there could be a grain of logic in there.
Is the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Smart electric toothbrush worth the price? At S$399, it’s difficult. For some people who really value their dental health and are willing to consistently use the app to track their progress, it’s a no brainer.
If you don’t require the smart features, perhaps the slightly more affordable Sonicare DiamondClean would be a good option.
More information and purchase options for the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Smart electric toothbrush (S$399) can be found on Philips’ website.