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What is Candid Co?
Candid Co is an online service that ships custom teeth aligners to your door, helping you get a straighter smile without a single trip to the dentist. Their aligners look and feel like Invisalign — they fit right over your teeth and are much less visible than traditional braces. They gradually straighten your teeth over the course of four to five months.
Candid Co is not the only company to offer this type of service. A few other companies, including Smile Direct Club and Smile Love, offer a similar home teeth straightening solution. However, CandidCo stands out by guaranteeing that every customer’s treatment plan is overseen by a licensed orthodontist.
Candid Co vs Invisalign
On the surface, Candid Co appears to be very similar to Invisalign. Both companies create translucent clear aligners to straighten the teeth. However, there are a few key differences:
- Candid Co makes getting straighter teeth more convenient than Invisalign. With Invisalign, you need to go in-person to meet with a local orthodontist or dentist many times throughout your treatment. With Candid Co, all of your check-ins are conducted online and you receive your clear aligners in the mail.
- Candid Co is much cheaper! Invisalign typically costs between $4,000 and $8,000. It’s so expensive because you need to buy Invisalign from a dentist or orthodontist, who will typically markup the cost of treatment by several thousand dollars. By selling directly to the customer, Candid Co is able to offer straighter teeth for $1,995.
- Candid Co is only suitable for mild to moderate cases of misaligned teeth. When you go in-person to get Invisalign treatment, the dentist or orthodontist has the opportunity to place special attachments on your teeth, which can speed up or enhance the quality of your treatment. Because treatment with Candid Co is conducted remotely, attachments cannot be included in your treatment plan. This makes Candid Co less ideal for more severe cases of misaligned teeth.
Candid Co vs Other Home Aligner Services
Over the past few years, several new companies have launched home aligner services similar to Candid Co. Based on our research, the top four at-home invisible aligner services are: Candid Co, Smile Direct Club, Smilelove, and SnapCorrect.
Of these four, we rate Candidco as the top choice for most consumers. Here’s a summary of how Candid Co stacks up to the competition:
Candid Co Advantages
- With Candid Co, your treatment will be taken care of by an orthodontist (a dentist with additional years of training in teeth straightening). With all other at-home aligner services, you cannot be sure an orthodontist will handle your case.
- Candid Co is beginning to offer physical locations where you can get your teeth scanned before starting treatment, instead of mailing in impressions of your teeth. Smile Direct Club is the only other provider that offers this convenience.
- Candid Co includes a free set of retainers in the purchase price. Other services charge you an extra $99+ for retainers, which are required to keep your teeth in alignment after treatment.
- Through the “Candid Smiles Back” campaign, a portion of sales goes toward providing orthodontic treatment to kids who have been treated for cleft palate in Argentina and Brazil, as well as educational programs for orthodontists in Mexico.
Candid Co Disadvantages
- While significantly cheaper than Invisalign and comparable in price to most other home aligner solutions, Candidco is a bit more expensive than Smilelove.
- If you are looking to finance your treatment, CandidCo’s third party financing provider will require a credit check and may charge extra financing fees. Smile Direct Club offers a more compelling financing option.
Who is Candid Co Right For?
If you’re looking to save money on your teeth straightening, but aren’t willing to sacrifice on quality of care, Candid Co may be the best option for you.
The total cost to purchase an aligner kit from Candid Co is $1,995. This makes Candid Co significantly cheaper than Invisalign, which usually costs more than $4,000, and comparable in price to similar home aligner services like Smile Direct Club and Smilelove.
Something that sets Candid Co apart from other clear aligner services is their commitment to excellence. Through Candid Co, all treatment plans are created by orthodontists instead of general practice dentists. This may improve the end result of your new smile.
Here’s another big plus – Candid Co includes a teeth whitening kit with every purchase.
Candid Co also includes your first set of retainers in the purchase price — something not all companies do.
Overall, Candid Co is an excellent value for the cost. We are giving Candid Co four stars for Value.
Service Quality –
Based on our research, it appears that Candid Co has partnered with ClearCorrect to create their clear aligners. ClearCorrect aligners have been FDA-approved since 2009 and is the company is one of the leading clear aligner manufacturers in the United States. Their aligners are made with a high quality plastic that is BPA-free. This is the same plastic that Invisalign used to be made with.
Candid Co is the only at-home teeth straightening service to ensure your treatment is taken care of by an orthodontist rather than a general dentist.
With Candid Co, the treatment plan you receive will be crafted by an orthodontist. Your orthodontist will oversee your case and approve you for treatment, and they are also responsible for the details of your treatment plan.
Because Candid Co is partnered with a reliable company to produce their aligners and because they only work with orthodontists, the aligners and the treatment plans they make are likely to be of a high quality. Due to this, Candid Co earns four and a half stars for Service Quality.
At-home teeth straightening is by definition more convenient than seeing a dentist month after month. Candid Co is therefore very convenient compared to Invisalign, but there is some room for improvement.
When getting started with Candid Co, there are two different ways to send the company images of your teeth. The most common option is to have a teeth impression kit (which Candid Co calls a “Modeling Kit”) sent to your home. The impression kit is used to make a mold of your teeth so Candid Co can make a care plan for your unique smile.
However, if you’re eager to start treatment and live in New York City, you could instead make an appointment and stop by The Candid Studio, a physical story where a Candid Co Care Specialist will scan your teeth so they can get started on your treatment plan as quickly as possible. You’ll leave The Candid Studio with the excitement of having jumpstarted your teeth straightening journey.
Don’t live in New York City? Candid Co is planning to expand the number of physical locations. Because the number of physical locations is currently limited, Candid Co earns four stars for Convenience.
Customer Support –
Candid Co makes customer support a top priority. The team is extremely responsive to customer requests for help and advice. They are also available to help you take your at-home impressions before you start treatment through a video chat. If something goes wrong with your impressions, you can order a second set for half the original cost and apply that cost toward the cost of treatment.
Candid Co earns five stars for Customer Support.
With Candid Co, there are two primary ways to pay for your care: pay upfront, or finance your care using Affirm.
No matter how you choose to pay, you will also need to pay $99 for a modeling kit (or scan your teeth for free at The Candid Studio). The cost of the modeling kit does not apply to the cost of your treatment plan and aligners. The impression kit is not covered by insurance, even if your clear aligners are.
Option 1: Pay Upfront
Your first option is to pay out of pocket the $1,995 for Candid Co. The price of $1,995 includes your modeling kit, your treatment plan, your clear aligners, and your first set of retainers.
Option 2: Finance through Affirm
Your second option is to finance your clear aligners with Affirm. When you apply for Affirm, they will do a credit check. Rates start at $88 a month for 24 months, but you may be offered a higher monthly payment, depending on your credit score. Affirm is available to residents of all states except for Iowa and West Virginia.
No matter how you pay, you can tack on additional savings if you have an eligible dental insurance plan or a health savings plan. These savings can significantly reduce the cost of your aligners.
- Insurance Refund: If you have dental insurance, your plan may include a refund for clear aligners. After you complete your Candid Co purchase, you will have the opportunity to enter your insurance information. Candid Co will take care of filing your claim to your insurance and you will receive your refund from your insurance company.
- Health Savings Accounts (HSA) or Flexible Savings Account (FSA): If you happen to have a Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA), you can use these to help pay for your clear aligners through Candid Co.
Candid Co is a newer company and is not currently the most popular choice, but we believe they are the best at-home teeth straightening service. We believe that because they prioritize customer’s needs, work exclusively with orthodontists, and have partnered with experienced clear aligner manufacturers, they offer the best clear aligner service system.