The Best Travel Toothbrush: Electric vs Manual

Last Updated on May 24, 2020

In Summary: We decided to pick out and review 10 of the best travel toothbrushes that keep your teeth clean when you are on the move, and we found that the Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 was a step above the rest.

It was chosen because of the advanced technology it uses, the unparalleled cleaning ability it has, and its extra-long battery life.

Other products might be smaller and cost less but the Genius Pro 8000 uses technology to tell you how clean your teeth are.

It won because:

  • It has a convenient traveling case that keeps it clean and safe
  • It can charge while inside of the traveling case
  • This electric toothbrush be charged with any USB cord
  • It has an ergonomic design that’s lightweight, comfortable, and convenient to use
  • It gives your teeth a damn good clean!

The Genius Pro 8000 is a technologically advanced electric toothbrush with every extra option you can imagine. It works well for me because I am lazy to I like to get powered assistance 🙂

If you are thinking of getting a folding travel toothbrush… don’t. Or at least be cautious, most of the designs we looked at are not very good.

The best manual travel toothbrush for anyone that brushes properly for at least 2 minutes is just a regular toothbrush.  But pack it in a toothbrush case to stop your drool getting everywhere.

The Best Travel Electric Toothbrush

Electric toothbrushes are not better than manual toothbrushes IF the manual toothbrush is used correctly.

That’s a big IF. It’s easy to become lazy and not brush with the correct technique or for as long as you should.

If you suffer from this Lazybuggeritis like I do then an electric toothbrush can help you.

In terms of travel, this is where it gets a little more complicated. You need to think about weight, keeping it charged and storage.

If you are traveling internationally you might need to take a plug adapter to be able to charge your electric toothbrush.

For most people that don’t travel often then a dedicated portable electric gadget might be overkill. Keep a good electric toothbrush at home and when traveling made do with a manual.

But if you are a frequent traveler then you might want to find an electric toothbrush that works well on the road.

But if you are a frequent traveler then you might want to find an electric toothbrush that works well on the road.

Bear in mind that any device with batteries should not be put inside checked baggage. TSA rules will want you to take those batteries into the cabin with you. This includes the batteries inside portable electric toothbrushes.

Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Electric Toothbrush Review

The Phillips DiamondClean is the first electric toothbrush that I’m reviewing from one of the most loved toothbrush brands in America. It uses powerful technology to clean teeth.

Things That I Liked:

You will get better results when using this brush. Whiter teeth are possible in as little as one week, the health of your gums can be improved in two, and plaque will be removed seven times better than when you use a regular toothbrush. It will remove coffee, tea, red wine, and cigarette stains gently.

Things I Didn’t Like:

For a toothbrush with such good things said about it and for having such a high price tag, this electric toothbrush has quality issues. There’s a gasket issue that ends up making it not work anymore. The charger seems to be built in a way that it will occasionally turn your toothbrush on while you aren’t there. I have heard some awful things about their customer service as well.

  • Whiter teeth in a week
  • Gum health improved in two weeks
  • 7x better plaque removal
  • Removes tough stains gently
  • After time gasket leaks make them fail
  • Complaints about bad customer service
  • Low quality construction and materials for such a high price
  • Charger can turn toothbrush on when you’re not there

Oral-B 3D White Action Toothbrush Review

The Oral-B 3D White Action Toothbrush is made for traveling and has a long battery life. It’s easy to use, gentle on your teeth and gums, and cleans your whole mouth well.

Things That I Liked

It whitens teeth naturally by removing stains on their surface. The bristles are rubberized, hugging each tooth and helping to hold the toothpaste where it needs to be for actually removing stains. It’s designed to reach between teeth and break up plaque.

Things I Didn’t Like

The motor that rotates the head is extremely loud. The aggressive attack of the Oral-B can cause irritation of your past dental work. The battery doesn’t last nearly as long as other electric toothbrushes, and the battery and the heads are both hard to replace. The toothbrushes head is too big for some to even fit in their mouths.

  • Naturally whiter smile by removing stains on the surfaces
  • Bristles made from a type of rubber
  • Holds toothpaste in the right places to remove stains
  • Reaches between teeth
  • Breaks up plaque
  • The motor is extremely loud
  • The battery doesn’t last long
  • Battery and head replacement is difficult
  • Can cause irritation at the site of previous dental work
  • Toothbrushes head is too big

Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Review

The Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 is my favorite travel toothbrush. It’s got technology other companies are only dreaming about, and has so many features and extras to improve your oral health.

Things That I Liked

This toothbrush pairs with smartphones enabling position detection. This uses facial recognition to show you where you brushed and what spots you might have missed. A SmartRing can be customized to visually aid you on how long to brush or how much pressure is recommended. Six different cleaning modes focus on daily brushing, gum health, whitening, sensitivity, tongue cleaning, and professional cleaning. The awesome travel case allows you to charge your phone and your toothbrush at the same time. They’re really tried hard to design the best portable electric toothbrush.

Things I Didn’t Like

The SmartRing is blinding. Far too bright. The Bluetooth connectivity requires you to pull out your phone every time you brush your teeth which can be annoying. The software doesn’t work nearly as well as they say it does either.

  • Toothbrush pairs to your smartphone
  • Position detection uses facial recognition to show you where you missed
  • Pressure technology alerts you if you are pressing too hard
  • Six different specialized cleaning modes
  • The smart travel case is awesome
  • Bluetooth abilities require getting your phone out every time you brush
  • The software doesn’t seem as cool as advertised
  • SmartRing is extremely bright
  • Customer service hotline is an automated system

Philips Sonicare 3 Series Review

The Sonicare 3 Series is a popular electric toothbrush that will work well for travel.

Things That I Liked

The battery in this toothbrush will last three weeks without needing a charge. This makes it great for taking with you. Three adjustable intensity settings provide a comfortable teeth cleaning experience. The brush will vibrate every 30 seconds alerting you that it’s time to move to another part of your mouth. When you have brushed a full two minutes, you should have hit all four corners of your mouth.

Things I Didn’t Like

If you have sensitive teeth, the brushes intensity may be an issue for you. The motor is extremely loud, even on the lowest setting. The button that turns it on and off is also the button that changes the vibration intensity which can cause issues and annoyance when you mean to do one thing and do the other.

  • Improves gum health better than a manual
  • Removes up to six times the plaque from along the gum line
  • Three adjustable intensity settings
  • Three week battery life
  • Vibrates loudly
  • The button that turns on/off also adjusts vibration which can be annoying
  • Vibration intensity can cause problems with sensitive teeth

The Best Manual Travel Toothbrush

Here’s the deal. Most of the folding manual travel toothbrushes are crap. It’s not that I’m against innovation they just are.

I mean… a toothbrush is already pretty light and small. It doesn’t really need to fold in half… that’s just a gimmick.​

You are much better off using a regular toothbrush and thinking about how you are going to store it in your carry on. A regular toothbrush is a portable toothbrush already!

You can just pop your regular toothbrush in your toiletries case.

And if you are worried about your toxic drool contaminating everything then you can use one of these.​

A manual toothbrush can get you an A+ clean if you have great cleaning technique and are not lazy.​

If that sounds like you then your regular manual toothbrush can be a good travel toothbrush.​

Electric toothbrushes are great to have at home but do you really need it when traveling? If you are only going away for 1 or 2 nights then I guess you could use one of these manual travel toothbrushes:​

GUM On-the-Go Folding Travel Toothbrush Review

The GUM On-the-Go is suited perfectly for a portable toothbrush. It only weighs an ounce and a half and is the size of a standard toothbrush. The ability to fold it up and throw it in your pocket is great for traveling. It is a simple option when it comes to choosing a travel toothbrush to use on your travels.

Things That I Liked

This toothbrushes tri-fold design allows the head of the brush to fold down into the handle for sanitary and convenient storage anywhere. The multi-level bristles deep clean in between teeth while the tongue cleaner helps to remove bacteria. A patented antibacterial agent maintains the hygiene of the bristles. It’s a compact travel toothbrush designed to be taken with you.

Things I Didn’t Like

When you are using the toothbrush, it will sometimes try to fold closed, and it’s a little tricky to keep it held open sometimes. After some extended use when the bristles begin to show wear they want to try and pop out of the sides of the toothbrush when you fold it up. This is pretty unsanitary if you think of all the places it comes in contact with. It was made with very little focus put on the quality and durability. The bristles are also extremely soft.

  • Comes as a two pack
  • Front pocket is great for organization
  • It folds up with the cap protecting the brush
  • Bristles coated with a patented antibacterial substance
  • Includes tongue cleaner
  • After time the bristles stick out when folded up
  • Doesn’t like to stay together making brushing difficult
  • Low quality and durability
  • Bristles are very soft

Colgate Value Travel Toothbrush

The Colgate Value Travel Toothbrush is designed to clean your teeth while traveling, participating in sports, or going to work. It weighs 1/5 of an ounce and folds up into an easy-to-carry size minimizing the space it occupies.

Things That I Liked

The small space that this toothbrush takes up when folded up is completely portable. The bristles are kept clean while it’s folded because the cover flips down over them. Two levels of bristles fit the contour of your teeth providing it the ability to not only clean the surface but between teeth as well. Six brushes come together with this one purchase.​

Things I Didn’t Like

​This brush has a cheaper quality when compared to other brushes in their lineup. Its head is also very inflexible making it harder to clean hard to reach places. It’s great that you can fold these brushes up, but they are tough to pry open and can cause you to lose your patience.

  • Six toothbrushes for a very low price
  • Easy to carry and travel with
  • Cover to keep bristles clean
  • Built to clean in between as well as surface of teeth
  • Soft bristles are anything other than soft
  • Hard to open once they are folded up
  • Not very flexible
  • Built cheaply

Colgate Wisp Portable Mini-Brush Review

This Colgate Wisp package contains 24 travel mini-brushes allowing you to clean your teeth just about anytime and anywhere. They are ideal for traveling or carrying with you anywhere.

Things That I Liked

These mini-brushes have a sugar-free bead of toothpaste that will easily dissolve delivering a rush of minty flavor. The bristles can then be used to remove particles of food from hard-to-reach spots in your mouth. The brush is effective at removing plaque and will gently work around your gum line. You don’t need any water or even to rinse your mouth out after you use it. There’s a pick on the base of the handle that you can use as a toothpick to remove food particles. These are great to have with you for using after you drink coffee, before you go out on a date, when you’re stuck in traffic, or anytime you wish to make a good impression on someone.

Things I Didn’t Like

These Colgate Wisps are pretty small making them hard to use by anyone with bigger hands. Even for smaller individuals, they are a little too small to be used effectively. The package even states that they are not to be used in the place of a regular toothbrush. The peppermint flavor is disgusting, and if you have them open to air for too long, they will completely dry out. If it’s not dry, there’s hardly enough there to do a thorough job of brushing.

  • Single-use travel toothbrush
  • Sugar-free toothpaste is used
  • Pocket-sized and portable
  • No water necessary
  • Soft pick no handle for cleaning between teeth
  • Should not replace your full size toothbrush
  • Too small to get to everywhere in your mouth easily
  • Toothpaste included tastes horrible
  • Known to dry up in the package
  • Not enough toothpaste for a good cleaning

AIM Travel Toothbrush Review

The AIM Travel Toothbrush is another manual toothbrush made for traveling with. This two toothbrush package has one firm and one soft bristled toothbrush.

Things That I Liked

I liked that this toothbrush is clinically recommended for effectively cleaning, removing plaque, and protecting gums. It’s another brush with the ability to fold up into an even smaller size while protecting the bristles from germs.

Things I Didn’t Like

The quality of the bristles on this toothbrush is very poor, and they don’t work well at all for getting particles from between your teeth. It has a tendency to fold up on itself while you are using it. When folding it up, it has too little room for the bristles to make it inside easily.

  • Two brushes, one firm and one soft
  • Dentist recommended
  • Folds down to a smaller size for travelling
  • Poor quality bristles
  • Doesn’t get between teeth well
  • Tends to want to fold closed while you are brushing
  • Bristles don’t fit inside very well when you fold it up

Best Travel Toothbrush Buyer’s Guide

With the popularity of electric toothbrushes on a rapid rise, you can find more available products for cleaning your teeth than ever.

Here are the most important things to keep in mind while you are looking for a toothbrush that will travel with you.

Shape and Size

Electric toothbrushes are available in different shapes and sizes because they are designed with other options in mind.

Search for one that is the right size for you. It needs to be big enough to fit your hand comfortably while saving you as much room as possible in your luggage. The more compact a brush is, the better suited it is for travel.

Traveling Case

A good traveling case makes all the difference giving you somewhere to organize and store all of your teeth cleaning tools. Your toothbrush should be kept dry, so you don’t have to walk around with a wet messy toothbrush wrapped in a bag anymore.

You don’t want a travel case that seals airtight. You want something that breathes so your drool can evaporate.​

Some toothbrushes have classy travel pouches made of special materials that are very sleek. If your toothbrush doesn’t have one included, you can also buy one separately.

Length of Battery Life

It’s very convenient to have a toothbrush that only needs to charge every couple of weeks. Make sure it’s charge before you leave so you don’t have to bring a charger with you. For those who have visits extending more than a couple of weeks look for a brush that can be charged with a generic USB cord.

USB Chargers

These make charging your toothbrush effortless. You can charge it with your computer instead of having to use a separate charger that takes up more room.

Voltage Features

The standard for voltage in America is 110 volts while most sockets you find in other countries use 240 volts. For traveling out of the country, make sure that you purchase a toothbrush that offers the ability to charge with either voltage. This will save you from buying a power converter later down the line.

The standard for voltage in America is 110 volts while most sockets you find in other countries use 240 volts. For traveling out of the country, make sure that you purchase a toothbrush that offers the ability to charge with either voltage. This will save you from buying a power converter later down the line.

Benefits Of An Electric Toothbrush Over A Manual

There are more and more reasons to use electric toothbrushes and as technology improves they keep getting better and better.

  • Your teeth feel very clean
  • They are an investment and a commitment to your tooth and gum health

The downsides are:

  • You need to charge them or plug them in
  • There is more to break
  • They’re more expensive
  • For packing they are heavier

An electric brush might have more power, have a brush head that was inspired by dentists, have a two-minute timer making sure that you are brushing long enough, or have different cleaning modes for different results.

All this technology is something that a manual brush will never be able to do and will always fall short of.

Lastly, I believe investing in a good electric toothbrush has a psychological benefit.

With great power comes great responsibility!​

If you invest money in a powerful electric toothbrush then you are someone that values their choppers, and someone that will care for their teeth over the long term.​

When it comes to manual toothbrushes the benefits are simple:

  • They are lightweight & Portable
  • Inexpensive & Easy To Find

But on the downside…

  • Do they say you are less committed to your oral hygiene?
  • They need to be powered by willpower

Don’t Forget Your Toothbrush

Well, that should have covered toothbrushes for traveling in its entirety.

There are jackknife design toothbrushes that can conveniently be folded up and carried with you as well as electric toothbrushes with superior cleaning ability.

If buying a new toothbrush, keep in mind all of the things I shared with you earlier about what makes a travel toothbrush great.

If you are just going on a trip for 1 or 2 nights then perhaps a simple folding travel toothbrush will do the job.

If you are going for a week or a fortnight once a year then you could just use a regular toothbrush with a hygienic travel cap.

If you travel frequently or long term then you don’t want this travel to interfere with your dental care. so consider investing in an electric toothbrush.​

Thanks for reading. Let me know in the comments if you have any tips for our readers!

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