When they created the first mass-marketed clear aligner system in 1997, Invisalign changed the teeth-straightening game. No longer were visible metal braces the sole option for adjusting and straightening teeth. Instead, adults could choose Invisalign’s much less noticeable clear aligners (aka “invisible braces”).
SmileDirectClub was one of the first companies to pioneer a clear aligner treatment that can be administered entirely from home. Place their aligners side by side and they’ll look similar, but Invisalign and SmileDirectClub actually deliver very different treatments and procedures.
If you’re trying to decide between them, you’re in the right place. This review will dig into the details of how Invisalign and SmileDirectClub actually compare.
Table of Contents
Our Overview and Recommendation
SmileDirectClub and Invisalign both make reputable clear aligner treatments, but that’s about where the similarities end. These are two very different options, each best-suited to different cases.
|Price||$3,000–$8,000 on average||$2,250|
|Treatment Scope||Mild to severe misalignments, including bite issues||Mild and moderate misalignments, only mild bite issues|
|Average Treatment Plan Length||12–24 months||Standard: 4–6 months|
Nighttime: 8–10 months
|Oversight||Office visits every 4–10 weeks on average||Virtual check-ins every 90 days|
|Startup Options||In-person exam and scan||Impression kit or in-person scan|
|Financing||Depends on the provider||$250 down, 28 monthly payments of $89|
SmileDirectClub may work well for:
- People with milder misalignments.
- Anyone who wants to avoid going to the dentist every few weeks.
- Customers sticking to a tight budget.
- People who are comfortable administering aligner treatment from home.
Invisalign may work well for:
- People with more severe misalignments or bite issues like overbite, underbite, etc.
- Anyone who would prefer regular, in-person oversight.
- Customers who would rather not work with remote customer service representatives.
- People don’t mind paying a little more for treatment.
Before you choose, visit your dentist.
No one knows your teeth better than your dentist, and they’ll know which treatment would work best for you. That’s why we recommend consulting them early in the process. They’ll examine your teeth and take X-rays to make sure your mouth is healthy enough for clear aligners. Plus, they’ll let you know if you have any cavities, gingivitis, or under-the-surface issues to address beforehand.
Over two decades ago, a dental device company called Align Technology developed the first clear aligner series, called Invisalign, which was the only widely available clear aligner on the market for nearly ten years. Today, they partner with 100,000 dentists in 90 countries and have treated over 15 million patients. They’re still the clear aligner giant, although they’re no longer the only option.
Compared to Invisalign’s long history, at-home aligner systems are fairly young. But SmileDirectClub is one of the oldest, most experienced among them. They started selling aligners in 2014 and grew rapidly. Customers took note of home aligners’ convenience, inspiring the rise of several competitors.
Like The Idea of Home Treatment? Get To Know Your Options.
SmileDirectClub may have been the first company to offer at-home clear aligner treatment, but they’re not the only one. If you like the cost and convenience of at-home treatment, it’s a good idea to know all your options.
We recommend that anyone interested in at-home treatment also look into Byte, our #1-recommended clear aligner service. To compare the five best at-home clear aligner brands, visit our in-depth comparison review below.
Scope of Treatment Comparison
Invisalign and SmileDirectClub are easily the two most recognizable names in clear aligner treatment. But name-brand recognition only goes so far; to choose one of these systems, you need to feel confident they can deliver the smile you want. They’ve each treated millions of people, but for either to work for you, your misalignments must fall within its scope of treatment.
Invisalign Treatment Scope
SmileDirectClub Treatment Scope
- Treats all classes of malocclusions, including many skeletal components.
- Can move all the teeth, including the molars.
- Typically requires office visits every 4–10 weeks.
- Primarily for mild and moderate cases of crowding and spacing.
- SmileDirectClub says their aligners can move all the teeth.
- Requires “virtual check-ins” every 90 days throughout treatment.
What Invisalign and SmileDirectClub Treat
Invisalign was developed with the idea that it would compete with traditional metal braces. As a result, it can correct a wide range of conditions. Invisalign states that their aligners have “demonstrated success in treating Class I, II, and III malocclusions,” including:
SmileDirectClub, as a remote aligner service, is more limited but is still able to address a wide variety of concerns. As they state on their website: “SmileDirectClub aligners are designed for minor to moderate crowding, spacing, and general alignment concerns.” They claim their aligners can treat the following conditions:
- Mild-to-moderate crowding
- Mild-to-moderate spacing
- Mild-to-moderate overbite or overjet
- Limited underbite
- Localized crossbite
Invisalign was made to move all the teeth, including the molars. Depending on how your dentist or orthodontist uses attachments, it can even shift the jaw. Home aligners tend to focus most on the frontmost 6–8 teeth. However, SmileDirectClub claims that if they take on your case, their aligners will move any teeth that need to shift.
However, we couldn’t find info on how often they approve cases that require — or would benefit from — molar movement, and we also don’t have data on how SmileDirectClub’s range of molar movement compares to in-office options.
What Invisalign and SmileDirectClub Customers Say
Invisalign and SmileDirectClub are the two most prolific clear aligner producers on the market. Between the two, they’ve corrected more than 17 million smiles, and this translates to a lot of customer feedback.
Many Invisalign patients have shared their feedback directly with us. Based on what they’ve said, there is little Invisalign cannot treat. We’ve seen results for everything from simple crowding and spacing to complex bite issues and misalignments. Almost across the board, the after photos are impressive, and many users give their experience 4–5 stars.
Customers have also shared their SmileDirectClub reviews with us. Most cases are related to crowding, spacing, and overbite, and customers with these conditions tend to give four- and five-star ratings. More complex issues like crossbite, midline shift, and underbite are less common, and SmileDirectClub customers with these conditions gave four- and five-star reviews at a slightly lower rate.
The foundation of in-office clear aligner treatment is direct oversight. Expect to see your dentist or orthodontist every 4–10 weeks, depending on the complexity of your condition and your dentist’s preferences. At these appointments your doctor can apply attachments, adjust your treatment schedule, and catch problems before they worsen.
SmileDirectClub oversight isn’t as robust, but that is the nature of remote aligner therapy. They do require check-ins via their mobile app every 90 days, so there will be eyes on your progress and adjustments will be made if needed. And if you want to get some hands-on care while also enjoying the benefits of remote treatment, consider their hybrid model, called CarePlus.
Invisalign and SmileDirectClub Quality of Materials
Invisalign makes its own plastic, called SmartTrack. It’s a multilayer thermoplastic polyurethane/copolyester blend. That might sound like jargon, but it’s a widely respected plastic that’s safe for human use. Plus, it consistently performs well according to reviews of various studies and clinical data.
SmileDirectClub doesn’t disclose the type of plastic in its aligners. However, they state their treatment uses Comfort Sense technology. This means they use a progression of thicknesses in their aligners, designed to help you adjust to treatment. Their series starts with thinner plastics and gentler movements before progressing to thicker, more powerful aligners.
When considering clear aligner treatment, one of the first things people evaluate is cost, and rightfully so. Orthodontic treatment isn’t cheap. It’s an investment in the future of your smile.
The price difference between companies can also be significant, and at-home options like SmileDirectClub are often much more affordable than in-office ones like Invisalign. Invisalign’s higher price, however, allows your dentist to facilitate a wider scope of treatment.
- No set sticker price (depends on your dentist), the average cost is $3,000–$8,000
- Aftercare retainers cost anywhere from $100–$300, depending on the dentist.
- Financing varies depending on the dentist, may require a credit check or down payment.
- $2,250 sticker price.
- Charges $125 for retainers after treatment.
- Also charges $59 for an impression kit (unless you visit a SmileShop).
- Financing requires a down payment but no credit check (everyone is approved!).
Peruse any home aligner company’s homepage, and you’ll likely find their sticker price front and center. This is because home aligner companies like SmileDirectClub, Byte, and AlignerCo usually offer attractive pricing, especially when compared to in-office brands.
The cost of SmileDirectClub is $2,250 upfront, $59 for an impression kit (unless you visit a SmileShop), and $125 at the end of treatment for each set of aftercare retainers. If you go with their CarePlus option, you’ll pay $3,900 instead.
Invisalign doesn’t have a set sticker price because it all depends on your specific condition and dentist. Think about it this way: if you have a severe case that requires more office visits (not to mention the added cost of attachments, if your dentist chooses to use them), your treatment will be more expensive. But, minor cases will often cost less. Still, because you’re paying for your dentist’s time and hands-on care, Invisalign is more expensive than SmileDirectClub, typically running between $3,000 and $8,000.
What About Insurance?
Sometimes, insurance companies will consider this clear aligner treatment purely cosmetic and ineligible for coverage. But depending on your plan, you may get some help. Insurance companies won’t often cover the entire cost, but you might receive partial coverage. And in general, they’re more likely to cover in-office treatments like Invisalign than at-home ones like SmileDirectClub. Even so, there’s a chance you could receive assistance from your insurance company with either option, although the process for requesting this coverage varies.
Dentist’s offices can receive payments directly from insurance companies, so your insurer can pay them directly. SmileDirectClub has partnerships with several insurance providers who can pay them directly, including:
- Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
- Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield
- Dominion National.
Other companies and plans will require you to pay the full amount up front, then request a reimbursement. To know for sure whether you’ll receive coverage, contact your provider.
Most people are probably not prepared to pay thousands of dollars out of pocket. The good news is that you don’t have to. SmileDirectClub provides financing and payment plans for every customer through SmilePay, which doesn’t even require a credit check. It does, however, require a down payment of $250, and then you’ll pay $89 per month for 28 months. For CarePlus, it’s a $500 down payment, then 28 monthly payments of $115 instead.
When your planner is packed and your life is flying by, it might seem impossible to fit teeth straightening treatment into your schedule. After all, it takes time and dedication over several months to transform your smile. Convenience can mean remote oversight, low time commitments, flexible wear schedules, and more.
By cutting out office visits, we think SmileDirectClub and other at-home clear aligner services have streamlined the process, although Invisalign still might be a convenient option if you’ve got a complex misalignment.
- An in-person consultation with a dentist is required to get started, including X-rays and photos.
- Requires office visits around every 4–10 weeks to monitor progress and receive new aligner sets.
- Does not have a nighttime-only option, only the all-day, 22+ hour schedule.
- Average treatment time is 12–18 months.
- Option of either ordering an impression kit online, visiting a SmileShop location for a free 3D scan, or scheduling a consultation with one of their partnering dentists.
- You’ll complete treatment entirely at home — no office visits required.
- Offers a nighttime-only option that only requires aligner wear for ten hours per day.
- Advertised average treatment time is 4–6 months.
Sometimes the most difficult step is the first one, going from dipping your toe in the water to jumping in completely. Some customers say SmileDirectClub has streamlined their startup process, making it easy, fast, and comfortable.
Most home aligner companies require you to make and submit molds of your teeth using an impression kit, and some customers find this process difficult. As an alternative, SmileDirectClub has established 100+ SmileShops nationwide, where customers can receive free teeth scans that take the place of impressions. If you’d rather start your journey in a dentist’s office, the SmileDirectClub Partner Network includes more than 1,000 dentists nationwide, where you can begin your treatment with an in-office consultation and teeth scan. Note that this dentist will only take your scans and submit them to SmileDirectClub — they won’t be involved in the full process like they would with Invisalign.
Since a dentist will develop your Invsialign treatment, you can get started by scheduling an initial consultation. Your dentist will scan your teeth, take X-rays, and design your aligners if you’re interested in continuing. This is just as easy as visiting a SmileShop, although you might have to pay for it.
Note: If you get started at a SmileShop, you may have the option to sign up for a “Fast Track” service, which gets your aligners to your door as fast as possible. However, it also means you need to pay the full treatment cost upfront. And according to some customer reviews, after agreeing to fast-track their aligner production, they weren’t able to see their full treatment plan before receiving their aligners, so make sure you consider it carefully before signing up.
Office Visits vs. Home Application
Invisalign typically requires office visits every 4–10 weeks so your dentist can monitor your progress and fit you for the next aligner sets. This takes away from your precious free time and may require you to take time off work. Between scheduling the appointment, driving to and from the office, and sitting in the patient’s chair, you could be looking at a significant chunk out of your day.
SmileDirectClub and their at-home aligner contemporaries eliminate these regular office visits. After you’ve been approved for treatment, they will ship the aligners directly to your doorstep, no appointments necessary. They do, however, provide virtual check-ins where you’ll submit photos of your teeth every 90 days, so they can make sure your treatment is staying on track.
How Long Does Treatment Take?
Along with “how much will it cost?”, this is one of the most common questions people have about clear aligner treatments. The short answer is that your treatment’s duration depends on the severity of your condition. Complicated teeth movements simply take longer to complete.
But generally, at-home aligners work faster than in-office ones. Why? Because they’re usually treating milder cases. Just looking at the averages: SmileDirectClub claims their treatment typically takes around 4–6 months, while Invisalign takes closer to 12–18. Of course, Invisalign is capable of shorter treatment times, and SmileDirectClub treatment can exceed six months. It all depends on your unique case.
What About Nighttime-Only Treatment?
Nighttime aligners are a relatively new development in clear aligner treatment. Typically, you must wear your aligners for 22+ hours per day. However, SmileDirectClub, Byte, and AlignerCo have introduced nighttime-only plans, which only require you to wear them ten hours per day (overnight) instead.
SmileDirectClub’s Nighttime Aligners are the same ones that you would receive for regular, all-day treatment. You just follow a different schedule, wearing each set ten hours per day for two weeks instead of one. While this flexible schedule makes treatment more convenient, it also extends your overall timeline to ten months on average. Plus, not wearing your aligners for longer periods of time each day could allow your teeth to start shifting back to their old positions, causing additional strain on their roots.
Let’s talk about looks. The primary reason many people choose clear aligners over traditional braces is that they’re much less noticeable. Even though all clear aligners excel in appearance, many companies have taken extra steps to make their aligners the clearest, best looking, and least visible — and each company’s website will tell you that they’ve succeeded.
Aligner attractiveness is a fairly subjective category, as it relies on personal preferences. So, you’ll want to consider your own tastes and style as you weigh your options. In our opinion, both Invisalign and SmileDirectClub make discreet aligners, but there are a few small differences that set them apart.
- Uses a frosted, textured plastic.
- Scallops their aligners to match your gum line.
- Reasonably stain resistant.
- Supplemental appliances, such as attachments or elastics, will make aligners more visible.
- Uses a frosted, textured plastic.
- Their aligners slightly overlap your gums.
- Reasonably stain-resistant.
- Cannot incorporate attachments, so aligners stay clear and less noticeable.
All aligner companies use clear, BPA-free plastics in their products, but these plastics can either be completely translucent or matte and textured. Both Invisalign and SmileDirectClub use matte aligners, which look more natural in our opinion. Your teeth are full of tiny pores, which gives them a textured surface, one that we think is better matched by matte aligners. Translucent ones can be reflective, giving your teeth an artificially shiny appearance, although some people prefer this gleam in their smile.
Straight-cut aligners may transfer force better than ones trimmed to match your gum line. However, we think this can also make them slightly more visible. It’s not extremely noticeable, but in close quarters, someone might see where your aligner and gums overlap. Without attachments, Invisalign’s scalloped aligners are slightly less noticeable than SmileDirectClub’s, which overlap the gums. However, SmileDirectClub offers scalloped aligners to their CarePlus patients and providers.
Using Invisalign, dentists can treat a wide variety of conditions, even severe bite issues, but this could come at a cost. To treat more significant tooth and jaw misalignments, your dentist may employ additional orthodontics like elastics or SmartForce attachments. Each of these will automatically make your aligners more visible since they’re increasing the amount of hardware on your teeth.
How does your treatment provider handle questions? What do they do if a problem arises? How far will they go to make sure you get the results you want? All of these things contribute to the overall patient experience.
By all accounts, SmileDirectClub facilitates a decent customer experience. But that’s difficult to do remotely. Even though service varies depending on the provider you choose, we think Invisalign’s personalized, hands-on care from a dentist or orthodontist typically makes for a better all-around experience.
Invisalign Patient Experience
SmileDirectClub Patient Experience
- You can consult with your dentist in-person.
- Office visits can help your dentist keep better track of your progress and make adjustments.
- Refunds depend on the policy of your dental office.
- Customer service is available via phone, email, webchat, and mobile app.
- Received some negative reviews in the past, but has since turned things around.
- Offers virtual check-ins every 90 days.
- Will work to modify your plan if you’re not satisfied, plus offer full refunds within 30 days of starting treatment, and prorated refunds after that.
- Their Lifetime Smile Guarantee ensures your smile forever.
Knowing how and when you can contact your treatment provider is important. SmileDirectClub says that their dental care team is available seven days a week via phone, email, webchat, and their mobile app.
During Invisalign treatment, your dentist or orthodontist’s office functions as your primary customer support contact, so you’ll need to check their contact channels and availability. However, the company also has a contact page where you can submit a question or concern to their Smile Concierge Team.
Customer Support Responsiveness
We dug into numerous online reviews to assess SmileDirectClub’s general customer satisfaction, and we discovered that they’ve accumulated some complaints over the years. Customers have reported delays in communication and complaint resolutions.
It appears that, around 2017, SmileDirectClub’s rapid expansion caused it to outgrow its customer service. More recently, they’ve been implementing initiatives designed to improve customer support — like a mobile app to track your progress, virtual check-ins with dental professionals, and expanded availability. Based on more recent reviews, it seems to be working.
It’s more difficult to gauge Invisalign’s customer service satisfaction, as most questions and concerns go directly to the individual dentist or orthodontist and are handled within their office.
But we think having a personal contact (like a dentist’s office) is preferable to relying on remote customer support teams. It means that the people addressing your questions and concerns will be intimately familiar with you and your teeth. Plus, you can speak directly to your dentist instead of going through a customer service representative, so you’ll get an answer from an expert right away.
During your SmileDirectClub treatment, you won’t receive any in-person oversight. They offer virtual check-ins every 90 days with their dental team and progress tracking through their mobile app, so you can make sure you’re staying on track. However, 90 days isn’t as frequent as Invisalign’s office visits, and as a remote treatment, it’s harder for SmileDirectClub’s team to evaluate your progress. If something seems off or you don’t think your teeth are moving as they should, you won’t have a professional who can physically assess your progress (unless you choose their CarePlus option).
Throughout Invisalign treatment, you’ll need to visit your dentist every 4–10 weeks so they can evaluate your progress and make adjustments to your aligner plan, if necessary. Scheduling these office visits might be less convenient and more time-consuming, but it also gives you reassurance that your teeth will stay on track, plus an in-person resource if you’re concerned about your teeth.
Refund & Warranty Policies
You might have that nagging thought at the back of your mind: “what if it doesn’t work?” The good news is that these two companies are highly successful for a reason, and a large majority of their customers end up with the results they’re after. But, there’s always the slim chance that you might be dissatisfied with your treatment.
SmileDirectClub offers refunds within the first 30 days if you have a quick change of heart. After that, they’ll provide prorated refunds for unopened and unused aligners, but the amount depends on how many aligners you return. If you aren’t seeing the results you want, in most cases, SmileDirectClub will work with you to alter your treatment plan. These refinements don’t often cost extra, but you may need to complete another impression kit or go back to a SmileShop for another teeth scan. Just know that they don’t approve everyone for refinements.
On top of that, SmileDirectClub has a Lifetime Smile Guarantee, which provides free “aligner touch-ups” — AKA a couple of new aligners to make minor adjustments — after treatment if your teeth ever shift again. To qualify, you must order two sets of retainers ($125) per year and wear them as prescribed.
What Are Customers Saying?
We’ve gathered hundreds of reviews from real SmileDirectClub and Invisalign patients. Most of the reviews for both companies are positive — more than 75% gave them four or five stars. Here are some highlights.
SmileDirectClub Customer Reviews
Note: In June 2023, SmileDirectClub settled an action brought by the Attorney General of Washington DC alleging that the company had engaged in unfair and deceptive practices by requiring customers, as a condition for receiving refunds, to sign non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). Learn More.
Each set of aligners seems well-made, and while some customers say the aligners didn’t move their teeth as much as they’d hoped, they’re still often happy with their results. However, some people report frustration with needing refinements, although it seems like SmileDirectClub is helpful in that process.
- “Customer service has been amazing with communicating with me with getting my refinements done. I went to a smileshop and had a scan done and they were so friendly and explained everything.”
- “My teeth needed a little extra push after I finished the plan so I got a set of refinements that really did the trick and got my teeth exactly where the plan said they would be.”
- “The process of ordering them was very easy and customer support was always quick to answer any questions I had. I finished my aligners in September and since my teeth aren’t exactly as I had hoped (still a gap in the front), I contacted smile direct club and they are sending me some refinements.”
There’s plenty more where that came from. Check out all of our SmileDirectClub reviews from real customers. And here are some video reviews as well.
Invisalign Customer Reviews
Invisalign patients are typically satisfied with their results and impressed by the effectiveness of their aligners in correcting even severe issues. They like the personal touch of regular office visits, even though they can be time-consuming.
Patients often noted how expensive Invisalign can be, although many thought it was worth the price for the quality of care they received. Some customers said the attachments could feel rough or sharp, irritating their cheeks and tongue. However, after a few days, that discomfort typically subsided.
- “At first, I was intimidated by the buttons on my teeth and was worried about it making my Invisalign trays more noticeable, but now I don’t even notice them! The process of getting the buttons on my teeth took a few hours, but now I just go to the dentist’s office every 30 days for a check-up.”
- “I was born without my lateral incisors so basically I have two missing teeth which has created large spacing through my smile…Turns out that Invisalign really can fix anything!! I’ve made so much progress in a short amount of time.”
- “I don’t have insurance and am paying out of pocket. The price for me was pretty steep at $7500. My orthodontist allows me to make monthly payments that are manageable for me. The price includes my initial treatment, all my office visits, and refinements if needed. Overall, I feel it is worth it to be confident in my smile.”
If you’d like to read more personal Invisalign experiences, take a look at all of our Invisalign customer reviews. Plus, here are a couple of videos we found helpful.
Which Should You Choose?
Once again, we think both of these companies offer high-quality clear aligner treatments. Neither one is clearly or inherently better than the other. Rather, each one has its own strengths, and each excels in different circumstances. So, your decision should be based on your unique condition, goals, and expectations.
Who Should Use SmileDirectClub?
If you want superior convenience and a more affordable alternative to in-office treatments, and you’ve got a mild misalignment, SmileDirectClub might be a good fit.
Who Should Use Invisalign?
To correct a more severe condition, or if you’re more comfortable receiving face-to-face care from a dentist or orthodontist, we consider Invisalign an ideal choice.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I choose Invisalign or SmileDirectClub?
It depends. If you have a severe dental or jaw misalignment, or if you just prefer in-person care, Invisalign is probably better. But if you’re looking for a faster, less expensive treatment, SmileDirectClub might be an ideal fit.
How do I get started with Invisalign or SmileDirectClub?
You can’t begin Invisalign treatment without first visiting your dentist or orthodontist. They will assess your smile, take impressions or scans of your teeth, and get the ball rolling. You can get started with SmileDirectClub treatment entirely from home, although you don’t have to. If you want to do it on your own, purchase and complete an impression kit.
You can also visit one of their 100+ SmileShops for a free teeth scan, or schedule an appointment with one of more than 1,000 dentists in the SmileDirectClub Partner Network.
How much do Invisalign and SmileDirectClub cost?
Invisalign’s prices can vary based on your condition, your location, and your dentist’s rates. But most people end up paying somewhere between $3,000 and $8,000. SmileDirectClub has a flat rate of $2,250, but you’ll also need to pay $59 for an impression kit (unless you visit a SmileShop) and $125 for each set of aftercare retainers. If you opt for their CarePlus treatment, you’ll pay $3,900.
How long do Invisalign and SmileDirectClub take?
Your Invisalign or SmileDirectClub timeline depends on the severity of your condition. On average, Invisalign takes 12–18 months and SmileDirectClub claims their average treatment plan lasts 4–6 months. The difference typically stems from the fact that Invisalign typically treats more severe, time-consuming cases.
Can I wear my aligners only at night?
If you choose SmileDirectClub, you’ll have the option of a nighttime-only plan that requires only ten hours of overnight wear rather than all day long. Invisalign says that effective teeth movements require 22+ hours of wear per day, so they don’t offer a nighttime option. To find out more about SmileDirectClub’s nighttime-only treatment, check out our full review.
What conditions can Invisalign and SmileDirectClub treat?
Invisalign can treat almost any dental or jaw misalignment because it can incorporate supplemental attachments for more power and intricacy. Because SmileDirectClub doesn’t have the same oversight and options, it’s restricted to treating mild and moderate cases of crowding and spacing.
What clear aligner company has the widest scope of treatment?
Since they’re provided in-office by a dentist, Invisalign, ClearCorrect, 3M Clarity, and SureSmile can handle the widest range of conditions. We think Candid is another good in-office option. Their dentist-directed treatment isn’t quite as comprehensive as Invisalign, but it incorporates robust remote monitoring.
What is the cheapest clear aligner company?
AlignerCo. At just $995, their price beats every competitor we reviewed by a few hundred dollars, and sometimes they run promotions that drop it even lower. And if you can’t pay that up front, you can jump on a financing plan, regardless of your credit score.
Which other companies should I consider?
If you like the idea of at-home aligners, take a look at Byte, NewSmile, and AlignerCo. Byte utilizes innovative technology to facilitate highly efficient teeth shifts for some customers, AlignerCo has the lowest prices of any provider we reviewed ($995), and NewSmile boasts affordable prices plus free extras and remote monitoring.
Does insurance cover clear aligners?
Sometimes. Most insurance providers don’t cover home aligner treatment, although some might if you have orthodontic benefits. They’re more likely to cover an in-office treatment like Invisalign. The only way to find out for sure is to contact your provider and ask.
Are home aligners safe?
At-home clear aligner treatment plans are always designed and/or approved by a licensed dentist or orthodontist — as long as you’re buying from a legitimate clear aligner service.
The main concern regarding the safety of fully-remote clear aligner treatment is the lack of face-to-face care. Since you won’t be seeing a dentist in-person during treatment, you won’t receive the same level of support that you’d get with traditional in-office aligners like Invisalign or ClearCorrect. That said, a recent NIH-funded survey found the majority of at-home aligner customers were satisfied with their results, and only 6.6% experienced side effects necessitating a visit to their local dentist.
Read our guide to safe home teeth straightening treatment for more information.
Do home aligners hurt?
When you switch to a new aligner set every two weeks, you might experience some discomfort for the first day or two, but after that, you’ll hardly notice them.