In-person care. At-home monitoring. Candid has combined both in a unique “hybrid” treatment program. Provided by a local dentist who collaborates with Candid to oversee your entire treatment remotely, Candid is an effective and streamlined clear aligner system with the perks of at-home treatment and traditional in-person care combined.
However, Candid treatment is certainly not without its downsides, and there are several other clear aligner brands out there. In this guide, we’ll outline the best alternatives to Candid (including at-home and in-office options) so you can confidently choose the best fit for you.
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Best At-Home Candid Alternatives
If you’re drawn to Candid because you can complete most of the treatment remotely, then an at-home clear aligner service might be right up your alley. Instead of visiting a local dentist, your treatment plan will be designed remotely by one of the companies’ dentists and the aligners will be mailed to you directly. You won’t get the advantage of hands-on care, but by eliminating dental office visits, these services have made clear aligner treatment much more convenient and affordable.
Since being founded in 2018, Byte has delivered efficient results for their customers and contributed innovative technology to the teledentistry space. Byte offers fast average treatment times, personalized customer service, and competitive pricing. If you want an aligner brand that’s on the cutting edge of technology and trends — yet doesn’t sacrifice a bit of quality — Byte could be a great option.
- At $1,895, Byte treatment is significantly more affordable than Candid.
- Some Byte customers see final results in just four months, which is faster than Candid’s 6-9 month average.
- The Byte-for-Life warranty guarantees your smile forever. If your teeth ever shift after you’ve finished treatment, Byte will create new aligners to correct them, as long as you’ve purchased their retainers every six months and worn them as directed.
- Byte provides financing plans for every customer, regardless of credit score. For Candid financing, your financing options are dictated by the dentist’s office who provided your treatment.
- If you’d rather not wear your aligners for 22+ hours per day, Byte offers a nighttime-only treatment that only requires ten hours per day.
- Byte does not yet have any physical locations. You’ll need to purchase an impression kit and submit molds of your teeth to get started, which can be difficult.
- Compared to Candid, Byte doesn’t provide the same level of clinical oversight during treatment.
Byte - The Bottom Line
Do you like the convenience of Candid treatment, but not the price point? If so, Byte is worth considering.
At-home aligners are already fairly affordable, but AlignerCo takes it to the next level. When it comes to affordability, this young upstart leads the pack. Not only do they have an attractive price tag, but they offer flexible financing plans to help make payments more manageable.
Their remote oversight isn’t as robust as Candid’s, and they don’t provide the reassurance of in-person care, but they accommodate with their attractive prices.
- At just $1,145, AlignerCo’s treatment price is by far the lowest in the industry.
- AlignerCo doesn’t require a credit check for their SmileFlex Easy financing plan, so everyone qualifies (their standard SmileFlex plan requires a soft credit check). Candid’s financing terms are up to your specific dentist.
- Because they’re a smaller company, AlignerCo can provide individualized customer service.
- Like Byte and SmileDirectClub, AlignerCo offers a nighttime-only treatment that only requires ten hours of wear per day.
- AlignerCo requires photo check-ins every 14 days, but they don’t provide special remote monitoring equipment, a mobile app, or a local dentist who’s involved throughout treatment like Candid.
- They have fewer customer reviews than larger brands like Byte and Candid, so it’s difficult to get a reliable gauge of the customer experience.
AlignerCo - The Bottom Line
On a tight budget? AlignerCo might not have the pedigree of quality that Candid does, but you simply can’t beat their prices.
Special Offer: Get $250 off AlignerCo treatment
SmileDirectClub is the largest and most experienced at-home clear aligner company out there. They kickstarted home aligners’ popularity and have straightened over 1.5 million smiles since 2014.
SmileDirectClub has a huge retail presence with 300+ SmileShops nationwide, and they continue finding ways to facilitate more convenient treatment.
- SmileDirectClub has 300+ “SmileShop” locations and a network of 1,000+ dental offices where you can kick off your treatment. The dentist, however, won’t be involved in your entire treatment like Candid.
- SmileDirectClub’s financing options don’t require a credit check, so every customer has access to a payment plan.
- SmileDirectClub offers a nighttime-only option that only requires you to wear aligners for ten hours per day instead of the typical 22. Candid does not have a comparable treatment option.
- SmileDirectClub only asks for photo check-ins every 90 days; Candid requires them every 14 days, providing much more consistent oversight.
- Online reviews suggest that SmileDirectClub’s customer support has not always been as responsive or helpful as Candid’s.
SmileDirectClub - The Bottom Line
No home aligner provider has a longer résumé than SmileDirectClub, so if you’re looking for a time-tested company that offers superior convenience, check them out.
Best In-Office Candid Alternatives
If you like Candid for their in-person care, at-home aligners might not be your cup of tea. But there are a few traditional, in-office options that provide the hands-on touch of a local dentist or orthodontist. While these clear aligners can often correct severe, complex misalignments, they also take a little longer to achieve your final results. But if you want face-time with your dentist, you can’t beat them.
This is the brand that sparked the clear aligner revolution. And today, Invisalign is still the most established and widely used aligner brand in the U.S. Through regular office visits and supplemental orthodontic attachments, their aligners can treat just about any dental misalignment you throw at it, even ones that Candid might not be able to handle. Invisalign is a pricier, more time-consuming treatment, but it’s tough to beat their effectiveness.
- Invisalign can correct a wide range of dental and jaw misalignments, while Candid is typically best for mild and moderate crowding and spacing.
- Dentists can add Invisalign’s proprietary Smartforce attachments, which help their aligners exert more force and make more intricate dental shifts. Candid aligners can’t incorporate attachments.
- Invisalign treatment gives you regular hands-on care from your dentist or orthodontist, so they can make adjustments and ensure that your aligners are working as expected.
- Their aligners are backed by more than two decades of experience and research, and they’ve transformed millions of smiles.
- Invisalign costs $3,000 – $8,000 on average, which is often more expensive than Candid.
- The regular office visits, while reassuring, are more time-consuming than Candid’s remote monitoring.
- Invisalign’s 12-18 month average treatment time is longer than Candid, which typically takes 6-9 months.
Like Invisalign, ClearCorrect is an extremely thorough and comprehensive clear aligner treatment, one that involves trips to the dentist throughout the process. The second-largest clear aligner producer in the U.S., their products can treat even severe cases and bite issues, and while they might be more robust than Candid, they’re also less streamlined.
- ClearCorrect’s in-office application allows for the addition of “engagers” – tiny, tooth-colored shapes that assist with complex tooth movements, similar to Invisalign’s “Smartforce” attachments. This means that ClearCorrect can treat a whole spectrum of dental and jaw misalignment issues.
- ClearCorrect charges dentists less for their aligners and lab fees than Invisalign, encouraging dentists to pass along these savings to their patients.
- Like Invisalign, ClearCorrect can be administered by a standard dentist (not necessarily an orthodontist), which makes treatment more convenient.
- Throughout ClearCorrect treatment, patients make office visits every 4-6 weeks, which gives their dentist time to assess their progress, make adjustments, and head off any potential problems.
- ClearCorrect’s office visits provide peace of mind, but they’re also time-consuming.
- ClearCorrect treatment generally takes 12-18 months compared to Candid’s 6-9.
- Even though ClearCorrect can be less expensive than Invisalign, it’s still usually pricier than Candid.
Six Month Smiles
Anyone who likes Candid’s timeframe but would rather have in-person care the entire time will likely love Six Month Smiles. They started out selling clear braces, but Six Month Smiles now offers clear aligners as well. Given their shorter timeline, they’re typically suitable for milder cases, but they provide the reassurance of meeting with your dentist or orthodontist for the extent of your treatment.
- The six-month average timeframe is shorter than other fully in-office brands.
- Because they take less time, Six Month Smiles treatments require fewer office visits, so they often cost $3,500+, similar to Candid.
- The company offers flexible in-house financing plans that can help make the cost more manageable.
- Six Month Smiles offer clear aligners and clear braces, so your dentist can choose the option that’s best for your specific condition.
- Given their shorter treatment time, Six Month Smiles is not designed to treat severe cases of tooth and jaw misalignment (like overbite, underbite, etc.). It’s more effective in treating milder cases of crowding and spacing, like home aligner systems.
- If your dentist recommends Six Month Smiles’ clear braces instead of their aligners, they’ll be significantly more noticeable.
How Should I Evaluate My Options?
Every clear aligner company excels in different ways, so when making a decision, you should consider your timeline, budget, preferences, and more. It’s important to avoid focusing too much on just one aspect of a particular company, like price or treatment time. When evaluating your options, we recommend researching and considering all of the following categories:
Who is in charge of your treatment plan? Where are your aligners manufactured? How are they designed? All of these things can influence a treatment’s effectiveness and efficiency. Dig into these details to know whether you’re receiving safe, high-quality products.
If you’re on a budget or just a habitual bargain hunter, low costs might be your priority. This isn’t just the initial cost that you might see online. You should also consider potential financing options, payment plans, and what items the sticker price includes.
Whether or not a particular treatment requires office visits or not is one way to evaluate convenience, but there’s a lot more to it. Startup methods, treatment schedules, and wait times each play a role as well.
Clear aligners are pretty discreet, but by experimenting with different plastics, surfaces, and designs, home aligner companies have made them even more so. Aesthetics somewhat depend on personal preferences, though, so what looks “best” might vary based on a customer’s tastes and style.
Contact channels, responsiveness, helpfulness, and refund policies all play into the quality of a company’s customer care.
While you should consider all of the aspects above, it’s natural to focus on one or two in particular. That’s why we’ve created guides showing which home aligner companies excel in each category:
At the end of the day, Candid is an excellent all-around option that prioritizes product quality and customer safety. There’s a reason that they’re #2 in our overall rankings. Despite all of Candid’s advantages, we understand that they won’t be a perfect fit for every situation.
Your teeth are important, so make sure to carefully evaluate all of your options before making a final decision. In the meantime, we’re here to help you measure each one up against your unique priorities so you can take a confident step toward your smile goals!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the cheapest alternative to Candid?
If you’re looking for quality aligners on a budget, AlignerCo has the lowest prices out there. They’re not the only company that’s dedicated to working with your finances, though. Our review of the Most Affordable Clear Aligners offers a full overview of the most cost-effective clear aligners on the market.
Are home aligners better than Invisalign?
Invisalign is a very effective option, although it’s not one that you can complete from home like the companies outlined in this guide. Instead, your dentist will create and administer your treatment during regular office visits. This makes Invisalign a bigger investment of time and money ($3,000 – $8,000 on average), but it also allows your dentist to treat more severe cases of crowding and spacing, as well as bite issues.
If you’re worried about the severity of your condition or would rather have one-on-one dentist interaction as part of your treatment, Invisalign could be a great fit.
Which clear aligner companies offer nighttime-only treatment?
SmileDirectClub, Byte, and AlignerCo. Byte and AlignerCo charge more for nighttime treatment than daytime treatment, while SmileDirectClub charges the same amount. Candid recommends wearing your aligners for 22+ hours per day for best results, so they don’t offer nighttime treatment.
Which clear aligner company is right for me?
If you have a complex misalignment or prefer in-office care, it’s tough to beat Invisalign or ClearCorrect. But if you’re looking for a service you can complete entirely at home, Byte is a great option. In the end, it all comes down to you specific condition and priorities.
What is the most convenient alternative to Candid?
SmileDirectClub takes convenience a step further than the competition. They have easier startup options and more flexible treatment plans than most competitors. If convenience is your top priority, read our review of the Most Convenient Clear Aligners for the full scoop on some other great options.
Which conditions can clear aligners treat?
It depends on which clear aligner treatment you choose. Comprehensive in-office brands like Invisalign and ClearCorrect can correct almost any misalignment that braces can. At-home aligners, on the other hand, are primarily designed to treat mild-to-moderate cases of crowding and spacing, along with some mild bite issues.
Does insurance cover clear aligner treatment?
It depends entirely on your provider and plan. If your condition affects your overall oral health and you pursue an in-office treatment, insurance is more likely to cover your treatment than if you’re making cosmetic corrections. But having orthodontic benefits doesn’t automatically mean you’ll be covered. You should check with your insurance provider to find out for sure.
How do I get started with clear aligners?
If you’re going with Invisalign, Candid, or another in-office option, you’ll need to find a provider near you and schedule an appointment. The dentist or orthodontist will provide an initial consultation as well as take X-rays and teeth scans that will inform your aligner design.
For at-home options, you’ll need to order an impression kit and create molds of your teeth, then send them to your company of choice. Or, if you choose SmileDirectClub, you can visit one of their physical locations for a free teeth scan, which replaces the impression kit process.
Is at-home treatment safe?
Yes! While administering treatment from home might seem daunting, the process is very safe. Home aligner companies use licensed dentists to create your treatment plan and design your aligners.
Even though you won’t meet with them in person, each company offers robust customer support services if something doesn’t feel quite right. Read our guide to safe home teeth straightening treatment for more information.
Do clear aligners hurt?
Customers often report experiencing tightness or discomfort during the first 1-2 days wearing a new set of aligners, after which the discomfort subsides. Some companies provide “chewies” or other devices to help ensure a more comfortable aligner fit.