Picture of a Sonicare toothbrush.

Sonicare Electric Brush

The best Sonicare brush heads - Sonicare's replacement heads compared according to design, intended purpose, brushing effectiveness, interchangeability, size.

Models - Plaque Control, Gum Care, White, AdaptiveClean, DiamondClean, InterCare, SimplyClean, ProResults, Sensitive, For Kids, TongueCare+ | C3/W3/G3/C2/G2/C1 Series heads | E-Series | BrushSync | Replacement intervals and indicators. | Click-on vs. Screw-on heads.

Sonicare replacement brush heads.

If you own a Sonicare that uses click-on brush heads, you've made a good choice.

That's because even though your toothbrush came with a specific type(s) originally, when it's time to buy replacements, you can choose from any of the other click-ons we show on this page. And that's a big assortment.

How do you choose a replacement head?

There are a number of factors that you should consider. They include: brush design and purpose, size, brushing effectiveness, convenience of use, interchangeability, replacement intervals and cost. We discuss all of these issues on this page. We also explain what Sonicare BrushSync brush heads are.

What brush head choices (styles/designs/sizes) does Sonicare offer?

We periodically visit the Sonicare (USA) website to see what brush heads they currently have listed. Right now, this is the group of replacement heads they show.

The Sonicare brush head lineup.

Save one, all of these brush heads are Click-On style.

With the exception of the E-Series, all of the other brush heads we discuss on this page feature Sonicare's newer Click-On (snap-on) design. It's this style that can be used universally with all of Sonicare's toothbrush lines, with the exception of the PowerUp Battery and Essence.

Preface to the remainder of this page.

For the most part, our information below is self-explanatory. It's all been taken directly from the Sonicare (USA) website. It's just been formatted into a single page so it's easier for you to make comparisons between each kind of head.

Sonicare brush head "Ratings."

We think it's important to make mention of the "Sonicare Rating" information we show. These details are a list of in-house traits ("10X more," "100% more," etc...) that Sonicare selectively uses as selling points for their brush head designs.

As you read through this information, you may notice that we were unable to find the exact same set of traits reported for all heads. And that the precise wording used by Sonicare in association with some, sometimes varied.

Despite these (substantial) deficiencies, we still chose to show these ratings because we know of no other similar source for this kind of information. And as such, we consider it the only available proxy (no matter how incomplete or inconsistent) for making comparisons between individual Sonicare brush heads.

Beyond that specific application, however, we think it's important to state that we'd be very hesitant to endorse the use of this (concocted) rating system at all.

Pictures of Sonicare toothbrush brushheads.

Our affiliate links can be used to shop  Sonicare replacement brush heads  on  Amazon.com  or  Walmart.com

Tip:  Keep in mind that if your toothbrush model uses click-on heads (all but Essence and PowerUp do) you're not restricted to just using the kind your brush came with. You can choose from any of the click-on designs.

The Sonicare brush head lineup.

Notes and impressions -

It seems safe enough to say that Sonicare considers this first group of heads we discuss to be their most effective brushers (10X plaque removal, and surface contact ratings reported).

They are also BrushSync brush heads. (Required by some toothbrush models for full functionality. See our Sonicare Lineup page for details about which toothbrush lines offer which BrushSync features.)

Picture comparing Sonicare C3, G3 and W3 Premium brush heads.

C3 Premium Plaque Control | W3 Premium White | G3 Premium Gum Care.

▶  C3 Premium Plaque Control -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 10X | Surface contact = 4X
  • Bristle stiffness = Medium Soft
  • Standard size only.
  • BrushSync capable.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $10.00

Sonicare uses the phrase "our deepest cleaning brush head" on their website for the C3. We'll take that as meaning they feel it has their most effective brush head design for removing dental plaque.

▶  W3 Premium White -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 10X | Surface contact = 4X | Stain removal = 100% whiter in 3 days.
  • Bristle stiffness = Medium soft. Side bristles are embedded in soft plastic to give them greater flexibility.
  • Standard size only.
  • BrushSync capable.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $10.00



From its name, one would assume that Sonicare considers this to be their best brush head for removing surface staining from teeth. We don't have much to say about that claim.

We will point out that in regard to stain prevention, any of their "10X" plaque removers should be an equivalent choice. That's because preventing tooth staining (in terms of something that toothbrushing can remedy) has to do with completely removing plaque and debris from tooth surfaces before it has had a chance to calcify and subsequently pick up discoloration.

Bristle design.

We couldn't help but notice how similar the bristle arrangement of the C3 and W3 heads are (see picture above). And with an essentially identical design, one would have to assume that any extra benefit that the W3 can provide would primarily be due to differences in bristle stiffness.

We do notice that Sonicare uses the term "polishing bristles" when describing the W3. But whatever difference that specifically entails, they describe both brush heads as being "medium soft."

▶  G3 Premium Gum Care -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 10X | Surface contact = 2X | "7x healthier gums" in 2 weeks.
  • Bristle stiffness = Soft
  • Standard size only. (But this head is comparatively smaller than the C3 and G3.)
  • BrushSync capable.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $10.00


Sonicare suggests that this brush head provides "superior plaque removal at the gum line." And they state that the soft sides of this head (the portion that holds the bristles, see picture above) are able to flex, thus allowing them to "adapt to the contours" of the person's gumline.

This "flexing sides" design is also mentioned in regard to the C3 and W3 heads. Although in our picture above, you can see how the design of the W3 is slightly different, which may allow it to provide more of an effect.

Notes and impressions -

This next brush head is similar to the C3, W3 and G3 in the sense that Sonicare categorizes it as a "10X" head (in regard to plaque removal). But note, this is not a BrushSync-capable head.

▶  AdaptiveClean -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 10X | Surface contact = 4X |
    "Improves gum health" in 2 weeks
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular
  • Standard size only.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $10.00


In terms of bristle appearance, this head seems essentially identical to the C3 Premium Plaque Control head shown above. And Sonicare tends to describe it in a very similar fashion (flexing sides, similar rating values, etc...).

Notes and impressions -

The next heads we discuss (C2 Optimal Plaque Control, G2 Optimal Gum Care, W DiamondClean and i InterCare) are all BrushSync capable.

But different than those above, Sonicare evidently considers these heads to have a less effective design. (They are designated as "7X" brush heads in regard to plaque removal.) Some of these are "top" designs from previous years.

Picture comparing Sonicare C2 and G2 Optimal brush heads.

G2 Optimal Gum Care | C2 Optimal Plaque Control

▶  C2 Optimal Plaque Control -

(Formerly the ProResults plaque control.)


▶  G2 Optimal Gum Care -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 7X | "Helps to improve" gum health.
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular
  • Standard size only.
  • BrushSync capable.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $8.30


Picture comparing Sonicare W DiamondClean and i InterCare brush heads.

W Diamond Clean | i InterCare

▶  W DiamondClean -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 7X | Stain removal = 100% whiter in 7 days.
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular
  • Standard size only.
  • BrushSync capable.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $6.75


▶  i InterCare -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 7X | "Improves gum health" in 2 weeks.
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular (This head is designed with extra-long bristles intended to aid with removing plaque from in between teeth.)
  • Standard size only.
  • BrushSync capable.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $10.00


Notes and impressions -

The remainder of the brush heads described on this page are not BrushSync capable. Generally, they are either specialty or else older (less efficient) Sonicare designs.

▶  InterCare -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 6X | "Improves gum health" in 2 weeks.
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular (This head is designed with extra-long bristles intended to aid with removing plaque from in between teeth.)
  • Standard size only.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $10.00


▶  C1 SimplyClean -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 3X
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular
  • Standard size only.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $7.00


Picture comparing Sonicare DiamondClean and ProResults brush heads.

DiamondClean and original ProResults brush heads.

▶  C1 ProResults -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 3X
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular
  • Standard size only.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $8.10

▶  SimplyClean -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 2X
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular
  • Standard size only.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $8.30


▶  S Sensitive -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = "Helps to remove plaque." No number is reported like with other brush heads.
  • Bristle stiffness = Ultra-soft
  • Standard size only.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $8.20


This seems to be Sonicare's head specially designed for those whose gums and teeth are ultrasensitive and therefore require a soft-bristled brush head.

We will point out that it would be expected that a head that has ultra-soft bristles would be a less efficient plaque-remover than those that feature Sonicare's "Regular" or "Medium Soft" ones.

This point is possibly evidenced by the fact that Sonicare does not state a "plaque removal" rating for this brush head like it does its other ones.

▶  For Kids -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = 2X
  • Bristle stiffness = Soft
  • Standard and Compact sizes.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $10.00


The For Kids heads are intended for use with the For Kids toothbrush handle. The heads (both sizes) are smaller and have softer bristles than Sonicare's heads intended for use by adults.

▶  TongueCare+ -

  • Bristle design = 240 latex-free rubber MicroBristles.
  • Standard size only.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $5.00


FYI: The use of this head is just one way of cleaning your tongue. Here's our page that covers manual tongue brushing and scraping.

▶  E-Series -

  • Sonicare rating for: Plaque removal = Currently no number is reported on the Sonicare website like with other brush heads. Historically this was reported as a 2X brush head.
  • Bristle stiffness = Regular
  • Standard and Compact sizes.
  • Replacement interval = 3 months.
  • Estimated cost per brush head = $6.50


Note: Unlike every other brush head described on this page, the E-Series has a screw-on design (not click-on). It can only be used with a very limited number of Sonicare models (Essence or other old-style Sonicare toothbrush models.)

About the prices we show in the information above.

It's been our experience that we've found the MSRP information reported on the Sonicare (USA) website incomplete (some brush head models do not have an MSRP stated). As a workaround for this shortcoming, we've chosen to list actual prices we've found on online retailer websites.

Since we assume that most people will buy in quantity, we've looked for offerings where the head comes packaged in multiples (usually 3 but in some cases 2 to 5). And then based on that product's price, we've calculated the per-brush-head cost we show above.

FYI: It would have been our assumption that as you descend on down our page that each brush head listed would tend to be lower in cost. As it turns out, we absolutely didn't always find this to be the case, so pay attention when you compare or shop. You may find that older, less-efficient brush heads may not be any less expensive than one of Sonicare's current models.

Pictures of Sonicare toothbrush brushheads.

Our affiliate links can be used to shop  Sonicare replacement brush heads  on  Amazon.com  or  Walmart.com

Tip:  Keep in mind that if your toothbrush model uses click-on heads (all but Essence and PowerUp do) you're not restricted to just using the kind your brush came with. You can choose from any of the click-on designs.

Brush head features and issues to consider.

Which Sonicare brush heads are the most effective?

Sonicare has a couple of different "rating" systems that they cite when touting the effectiveness of their various brush heads. Three of these "statistics" that we've taken from their website (USA version) and included in the information above are their claims about plaque removal, tooth surface contact, and gum health.

a) Which Sonicare brush heads are best at removing plaque?

Here's how Sonicare ranks the comparative effectiveness of their heads in regard to "plaque removal as compared to a manual toothbrush."

  • "10x more" - C3 Premium Plaque Control, W3 Premium White, G3 Premium Gum Care, Adaptive Clean
  • "7x more" - C2 Optimal Plaque Control, G2 Optimal Gum Care, W DiamondClean, i InterCare
  • "6x more" - InterCare
  • "3x more" - C1 SimplyClean, C1 ProResults,
  • "2x more" - SimplyClean, For Kids, E-Series.


Using the ratings - Observations and comments.

a) Sonicare brush heads vs. a manual toothbrush.

We want to point out that a person can be very effective in removing dental plaque from their teeth just using a plain-old manual toothbrush. And in fact, suggesting that using an electric brush is substantially more beneficial than a manual one is generally the more difficult case to make. (Note: With either method, flossing is still needed to complete the job.)

When cited on its website's pages (USA), Sonicare doesn't link to the study parameters, data or statistical analysis on which their rating system is based, so we don't have that information to look at and understand.

But we would suggest that whatever first goes through your mind when you see the words "10x more" probably isn't what was actually measured by their study and rating system. So we wouldn't be overly swayed by the statement.

b) Sonicare brush head vs. Sonicare brush head.

We would expect that the rankings above probably do fairly accurately reflect the comparative effectiveness/efficiency of Sonicare's brush heads.

So when trying to pick out a head that is best for removing plaque, choosing a 10X head probably does make a better choice than a 2X one. (We tend to think of it as the 10X head probably does a better job when identical amounts of time and effort are expended.)

But beyond that, we'll simply state that their 10X heads are a relatively new design, and there are literally decades of published scientific studies that have documented that using previous generations of Sonicare models are good plaque removers.

So, apparently you can be effective with either. And as stated above, we would think that whatever goes through your mind when you see the term "10X more" probably isn't exactly what was actually measured by their study and rating system, so don't be overly swayed by it.

b) Brush head surface contact.

This rating that Sonicare bestows on some of their brush head designs is an indication of the level of tooth-to-bristle contact that takes place during use. A higher value would generally be associated with heads that are more effective plaque removers.

The basis of comparison used is "X" times "more surface contact than a DiamondClean brush head."

c) Gum-health rating.

This rating system has the qualifiers: "X" times "healthier gums" in "X" weeks, with the toothbrush set in Gum Care Mode vs. a manual toothbrush as measured by GBI (Gingival Bleeding Index, which is a measure of gum tissue bleeding when probed).

We have no comment to make here other than to say that we're not unduly impressed by this "statistic."

Which Sonicare models can be used with which brush heads?

a) Click-on style -
Sonicare came out with their click-on brush head design a number of years ago. These heads snap in place over a rod that extends from the toothbrush's body. (We discuss the advantages of this design below.)
To their credit, each major model that's come out since then has continued to support this design. And this gives owners a very wide selection of replacement brush heads to choose from.
In regard to which models can use this style of head, the Sonicare (USA) website states that click-on heads fit "with any Philips Sonicare toothbrush handle, except PowerUp Battery and Essence."
b) Screw-on style -
In contrast to the above, screw-on (E-Series) brush heads can only be used with older style Sonicares, like the Essence.

How long do Sonicare brush heads last?

Suggested replacement intervals.

Sonicare's standard recommendation is that brush heads (all styles) should be replaced every 3 months.

Blue indicator bristles.

Sonicare incorporates blue "reminder" bristles into their heads. Their color gradually fades to white with use.

We will point out that Sonicare has used the word "reminder" when naming these bristles, meaning they're not necessarily a precise indication. We've read online user comments that suggest that the color change sometimes signals replacement before a full 3 months has elapsed.

BrushSync brush head replacement indicator.

Toothbrush models that utilize BrushSync brush heads can track brushing session pressure and duration. Using that information, the brush then calculates and signals when brush head replacement is due.

An equally good test.

A perfectly reasonable evaluation of brush head integrity is to just compare it to a new one. For example: Do the bristles look frayed and worn? Does the bristle arrangement itself look misshapen or damaged? After using the head, do you notice a lack of effectiveness?

If you answer yes to any of these questions, then it's time for a replacement.

Other things to know about brush head longevity.

Here are some additional points we've noticed when reading Sonicare user manuals.

  • It's recommended that brush heads that have bent or crushed bristles should not be used. Damaged bristles may break off while brushing.
  • If the toothpaste you use contains peroxide, baking soda or other types of bicarbonate (these are ingredients frequently found in "whitening" toothpaste), be sure to rinse your brush off thoroughly after use.

    Residual amounts of these compounds can cause damage to plastic components, like brush heads or even your toothbrush's handle.


Brushing efficiency- New vs. old brush heads.

There is no question that newer brush heads tend to clean more effectively than older ones. But of course, this would be true for any type of brush, manual or powered.

To quantify this effect for Sonicare brush heads, a Philips "data on file" paper compared the plaque-removing effectiveness of new and used (3-months-old) ProResults heads. They found that the new ones removed 28% more plaque.

Section references - Jenkins

BrushSync brush heads.

Sonicare's newest toothbrush lines require the use of BrushSync brush heads (for full functionality). These heads contain a microchip whose presence can be detected by the toothbrush handle, which then gives it the ability to perform various added functions. Examples:

  • Brushing mode paring - The toothbrush handle is able to identify the type of brush head that's been installed. It then switches to the brushing mode that Sonicare feels is best to use with it (or else the mode you have programed the brush to switch to).
  • Smart Sensor Technology - BrushSync heads make it possible for toothbrushes to monitor brushing pressure and brush head location (which makes mouth-map and touchup reporting possible). Other signaling includes scrubbing motion detection and brush head replacement.


Toothbrush models vary by way of which BrushSync capabilities they feature. Our Sonicare Lineup page makes note of these differences.

Things to know.

Since they have Sonicare's standard click-on design, BrushSync heads can also be used with most all of Sonicare's other toothbrush handles too, although doing so provides no extra advantage.

And for BrushSync enabled toothbrushes, the opposite is true too. Standard non-BrushSync heads can be used but, of course, no BrushSync features would be functional.

Standard vs. Compact brush head sizes.

For some people, the choice of using a smaller brush head size might be an option that they'd like to have. Unfortunately, Sonicare seems to have discontinued some of its previous "Compact" offerings (DiamondClean, ProResults).

  • We're under the impression that the For Kids is the only click-on head that currently offers a Compact option. (Note: Both the Standard and Compact versions of the For Kids are already smaller in size than Sonicare "adult" brush heads.)
  • Sonicare states that the G3 Premium Gum Care head is smaller in size than its other "adult" heads.
  • The screw-on E-Series head comes in both Compact and Standard "adult" sizes.


Which size should you use?

As you might expect, Compact heads are frequently favored by people who have a relatively small mouth or limited oral access (children, some adults).

Additionally, people who have special needs or circumstances, such as hard-to-reach locations or dental braces, frequently find using a smaller head helps.

Size vs. brushing efficiency.

You might anticipate that just using a Standard-sized head makes the best choice for most adults. They may, but research doesn't necessarily seem to confirm this.


#1 -We ran across a Philips Sonicare "data on file" document (Putt) that included an evaluation of the brushing effectiveness of both DiamondClean heads, Compact and Standard.

As compared to the study's reference brush, the Standard version showed a performance improvement of just 33%, whereas the Compact was documented at 45%. Yes, the Compact head was the more effective brusher.

#2 -We also found a published research study (Biesbrock) that included the evaluation of Sonicare e-Series brush heads in both Compact and Standard form.

It determined that when compared to the study's reference toothbrush, the Compact style was more effective in removing dental plaque than the Standard.

Section references - Biesbrock, Putt

You'll need to consider all factors.

The discussion above is meant to simply point out that you owe it to yourself to experiment. Don't just use a Standard-size head because you think you're supposed to. If you struggle with the larger size, try a smaller head and determine which seems best to you.

We do need to point out that the studies above involved Standard and Compact versions of the same brush head model, an option that's not available in today's line up. And choosing the comparatively smaller G3 vs. the C3 or W3 heads can't be considered a truly lateral alternative because of differences in bristle arrangement and stiffness. So you'll need to pay attention to how these factors affect your brushing experience.

From reading consumer comments online, it's our impression that people frequently prefer using a smaller brush head. However, these same posters also frequently mentioned that smaller heads tend to wear out more quickly than Standard ones, thus making them the more expensive option.

Click-on vs. screw-on brush heads.

Almost all current Sonicare models have a design where their brush head snaps into place over a rod on the toothbrush handle. This is in comparison to the older-style e-Series brush heads that have a large screw-on fitting (currently, only the Essence model uses this type of head).

a) Snap-on heads are more convenient.

If your situation is one where you'll share your brush, the click-on design is convenient because it makes the process of switching heads easier and quicker.

b) Brushes that use click-on heads are easier to keep clean.

Due to their design, toothbrush models that use snap-on brush heads tend to be easier to keep clean than screw-on ones.

With the latter, gunk tends to accumulate underneath the head's screw-on collar. Debris entry is via gasket joints where the stem of the brush passes through the head's casing, and then also where the casing meets the brush's body.

Especially in the case where the brush head is seldom removed, the amount of debris that can accumulate can be surprising. In online reviews on retailer websites, this is a very common mention.

There are some solutions for this problem:

  • Placement of a silicone cover (e.g. Sonic Seal) over the brush head. It acts as a barrier to seepage.
  • Removal of the brush head after each use and cleaning and drying both it and the toothbrush body (This is the most time-consuming option.)
  • The application of silicone grease at each joint may help to prevent/minimize leakage.


[Philips and Sonicare are registered trademarks of Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V.]

Pictures of Sonicare electric toothbrushes.

Our affiliate links can be used to shop  Sonicare toothbrushes  on  Amazon.com  or  Walmart.com

Tip:  The higher-end Sonicare models are great toothbrushes, and more refined, but they're pricey too. It's our opinion that the mid-price models HealthyWhite+ and ProtectiveClean 6100 make a good middle-of-the-road, best-value purchase.


 Page references sources: 

Biesbrock AR, et al. Clinical Evaluations of Plaque Removal Efficacy: An Advanced Rotating-Oscillating Power Toothbrush versus a Sonic Toothbrush.

Jenkins W, et al. Plaque Removal in vivo study Plaque removal efficacy of "new" vs. "old" Philips Sonicare ProResults brush heads.

Putt M, et. al. Plaque removal efficacy of two novel Philips Sonicare DiamondClean brush heads.

All reference sources for topic Electric Toothbrushes.


Electric Brush Heads

We use the Sonicare and love it. I've always used the generic Sonicare replacement heads but we recently signed up for brusher club replacement brushes from a friends recommendation and they are a great cost saver for us.


I have found your website to be very helpful and thorough. It has helped make what seemed like an overwhelming amount of information understandable.

Compact Brush Head

Years ago I decided the compact size cleaned my teeth the best. I think it's because, in addition to being more maneuverable for reaching difficult places, each bristle receives more energy when the motor's full force is concentrated on a smaller area.


Sonimart makes a replacement brush Sonimart Standard Replacement Toothbrush Heads for Philips Sonicare ProResults HX6013, HX6014 4 pack that sells on Amazon for $14.95. Amazon labels these as the #1 best seller, and 2,180 reviews give them an average of 4.3 of 5 stars. What do you think of these?


Having never seen one of these brush heads in the flesh, we really can't say anything definitive about them.

We can say that the Sensitive and ProResults heads they mimic are older technology. And while we don't swallow everything that Sonicare has to say, the ProResults (and likely the Sensitive too since it's similar looking) is likely a less-efficient brusher than the heads with a more modern design.

On the Amazon page you mention we see a claim of "proven to reduce gingivitis up to 100% better than a manual toothbrush." However on the company's website couldn't find a page detailing this "study." (Their website also seemed to lack information about a physical address for the company, or even what company actually owned/ran this business. Even their domain name registration hid this information.)

The Amazon page makes mention of "OEHHA Prop 65 approved." That regulation has to do with the materials used to make the heads. That's not a standard dealing with issues such as bristle stiffness or whether the tips of the brisles are rounded or not. Both of these factors could affect product safety to oral tissues.

Philips Sonicare Diamond Clean

The part coming from the handle to attach the brush head is wiggely and is louder than usual. Is there a place that can replace it or fix it? Could I send it somewhere to repair?

Mary Ann

We noticed this support page on Philips.com. Look in the column on the left side of the page. Hope this helps.


Your reviews and information was extremely helpful and comprehensive.

Also, your sponsor ads were not over-the-top intrusive, which seems to be the current trend.

thank you

super helpful articles, thank you!

Question about brush heads

I'm about to order a new Sonicare HealthyWhite toothbrush to replace my old one. The old one takes the screw-on brush heads, so I'm moving into unfamiliar territory with the snap-on heads. Do you know if it's possible to get a "sampler pack" of one each of the different snap-on brush heads? I'm not really sure which kind will be best for me, aside from the fact that I've tended to prefer the compact brush head size. Thanks!


No, we're sorry to say we're not familiar with a sampler-type kit.
You're going to get a DiamondClean with your brush.
The other brush heads that come with other top-end models are the: AdaptiveClean, InterCare, Gum Health and Plaque Control.

In terms of plaque-removing capabilities, Sonicare ranks then in this order:

Adaptive Clean (10X more than manual brush)
DiamondClean (7X more)
InterCare (7X more)
Gum Health (6X more)
Plaque Control (6X more)


My wife and I would like to share an Essence+. I've heard there is a way to distinguish between which would be my brushhead, and which would be hers (colored rings, markings, etc.), but I can't find anything online to confirm this. Could you elaborate on this? Thanks.


Here's your answer. The heads have different geometrical shapes etched on them.

I will only use the recommnded Sonicare brushes

I always had great teeth but I took it for granted. I then lost a tooth and after all the grief of that happening I only brush with the recommended Sonicare brushes. I brush twice a day, floss every single tooth daily and use antiseptic mouthwash for at least 30 seconds. It must say antiseptic on the bottle. My teeth have been perfect now for years.


We agree. We find it hard to believe that the "knock off" brushes adhere to the same stringent standards of the Sonicare brush heads (proper bristle stiffness/flexibility, rounded bristle ends, etc...).

Nobody has "great" teeth, so

Nobody has "great" teeth, so that statement is a lie. If that were so, tooth problems would not exist. Doing all those things has merely improved your teeth for the better.


Greatness does not imply the elimination of all problems. It is an ability, quality, or eminence considerably above the normal or average.
So in effect, your statement is the lie.

Differences in softness

Note that there is apparently a difference in "bristle stiffness feel" in some of these brush heads. Comparing the "10x more" brush heads, they come in standard, medium soft, and soft.

Thanks for posting JJ.

We've revised this page so it contains the information you mention.

Flexcare+ original head?

Which replacement head is closest to the one originally supplied with the toothbrush?


We're under the impression that the original FlexCare+ model came with two ProResults brush heads (one standard and one compact size).
Later on it came with the ProResults Gum Care head, standard size.

Originally, those two styles of heads had bristle designs that looked pretty ordinary (similar to a regular toothbrush).
Since that time, Sonicare has redesigned both. The tufts of bristles are arranged differently. The heads look more "modern," which is why you don't equate the new version with what you had before. We'd expect the cleaning effectiveness is improved with this newer design and that's why they made the change.

For your model, no reason to buy the more expensive heads that are preceded by a letter (like "C" or "W"). Just buy the cheaper regular heads.

Adaptative Brush Head

Ive been looking for the adptative brush heads for my HealthyWhite model, the site says they "no longer available"?? Are you guys aware of this? Has the adaptative been replaced with something else similar?


No, we weren't really aware but like you, we see the Adaptive Clean still listed on the Sonicare website but when following its links are unable to access its pages.

We do see this head still listed available from reputable online retailers (but didn't actually try to make a purchase). Now might be the time for you to stock up.

Sonicare eternally comes up with a new spin for new products but seldom seems to state that a new product is intended as a direct replacement of something previous.

We do have this list that arranges brush heads according to what Sonicare states is their comparative effectiveness. That might be a place to start.

Bristle stiffness

I used a Sonicare toothbrush for several years but at some point, I put it away and started using a manual brush. I just purchased another Sonicare and have been looking at replacement heads. ALL of the heads I have seen online and in the store are marked MEDIUM (aside from the sensitive ones). I have always used a soft bristled toothbrush because most, if not all dentists recommend doing so. I want to get the most out of my Sonicare but dont want to cause damage to my gums or enamel by using a medium bristle brush. Oral b doesn't seem to rank as high but they offer more soft bristle options, and their heads are only a fraction of the cost.

Is using one of Sonicare's premier heads (only available in medium) long term, potentially causing harm?


For most people, we'd anticipate that they don't have anything to worry about in regard to Sonicare bristle stiffness. Oral-B and Sonicare are like two bickering children. If there was a proven risk for harm, there is no question in our mind that Oral-b advertising would bring it up.

On the Sonicare website we see this page that can be used to access studies they have conducted.
We limited the search using the following parameters and were served up a few studies that had evaluated this issue.
Product: Toothbrushes and heads.
Dental Indication: Gentleness

If you're really concerned, you might consider using a "sensitive" brush head and the "sensitive" setting on your brush. Also keep in mind that the way you brush with your Sonicare is an important factor too.

Is Philips phasing out DiamondClean compact brush heads?

FYI: I looked today for DiamondClean OEM compact heads on usa.philips.com, walmart.com and amazon.com without luck. Also, no indication of replacement models on Philips site.

Anyone who knows where to buy them?


We don't have a definitive answer for you.

Like you report, we only see 3 compact heads listed on the Sonicare website. One of them is the snap-on For Kids compact head. Actually both the For Kids standard and compact heads (both diminutive in size) should fit your Sonicare handle. We're under the impression though that you'll find their bristles softer than the DiamondClean.

We still see the compact DiamondClean sold on Walmart.com, via a 3rd party. Possibly this is the end of an era.

Kids brush

Hi can i use the kids brush if im an adult whats the differance in the standard kids size and the adult size ? Is it the same amount of brush strokes ? Thanks david w

* Comment notes.


Sonicare promotional materials specifically state 31,000 brush strokes per minute (that's the same as on the good adult brushes).

As far as the size of the head, you'll need to compare at the store. The Standard For Kids head is similar in size to the adult DiamondClean (which is a smallish head). Other of the adult brush heads are as much as about 1/3 larger. And then compared to available heads, the Compact Kids head is smaller yet.

Kids brush heads have softer bristles than most adult brush heads.

And yes, according to Sonicare the Adult snap-on brush heads will fit on the For Kids model.

Angled brush heads

I love the way you distilled the information down to those features that seem to matter most. I'm wondering which of the Sonicare models feature angled brush heads. I found on the Philips web site that some features may be present but not called out, and it is difficult to tell based on photos depending on which angle the picture is taken from. The reason I'm checking for this feature is because I think it will help reach the back teeth.

* Comment notes.


You might try the following to get the details you want:
Do a Google.com search for this exact combination of words -- sonicare toothbrush heads mea philips --
Then at the top of the page, below the word "Google," click the "Images" (image search) link.
For us, the first image shown is a picture of several of the current brush head models, all in a line, all positioned at the same angle.
Click on the picture to enlarge it.
The brush head in that picture that is most angled is for the older style Essence brush.
The other heads are for the more modern Sonicares.
Most larger department stores will have replacement brusheads on their racks, although in their packaging.
The way we remember these displays, the packaging was clear and you could see through it somewhat.

Some stores have mock ups of Sonicare models on display, where you can actually pick them up and touch them.
Since different models come with different heads, you'll possibly have an assortment of different ones to examine.
(Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond have models on display in our local stores.)

fluid dynamic cleaning

Does any particular brush head facilitate fluid dynamic cleaning? Intercare? Thanks

* Comment notes.


We "chatted" with an online Sonicare representative who stated that no one brush head held an advantage over the others in terms of creating non-contact (dynamic fluid) cleaning.

Holder for the brush heads

The older screw on brush head models included a holder that allows you to store two brush heads in the upright position. Other than the UV models, do any of the newer click on Sonicare models include a similar brush head holder? If not, how are you supposed to store them between brushings?

* Comment notes.


You'll need to look closely at the packaging of the products you are comparing.
The charging bases of some Sonicare models have an extra numb (one, possibly two) sticking up that you can store extra brush heads on.
We see storage nubs on the Flexcare models as well as some of the HealthyWhites.
The DiamondClean, since it features the "glass" charger doesn't offer this feature.
We don't believe you'll find it on the lower-end Sonicares either but to be sure you'll simply have to look.

Standard sized brush heads?

Does Philips, or any aftermarket manufacture, have FULL sized brushes for the Sonicare?

All of the brushes I've seen for these are half the size a as standard manual toothbrush. I also want a medium bristle not a soft.



As a guess, the current brush head designs that you understandably dislike make it easier for the brush to consistently maintain the brushing frequency Sonicare promises (by way of being smaller and lighter). So no, this seems to be a design feature and we're not aware of any "oversized" alternatives.

Most knock-offs just seem to mimic original products, so from that standpoint, we're unaware of any alternatives either.

It's generally our impression that the heads on this page ranked "7X" for plaque removal (Sonicare's nomenclature) tend to be the "stiffer" heads. So if you haven't tried one of them you might.

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