A Full Buyer’s Guide to Invisible Aligners

woman wearing invisible alignersGone are the days when your only option for straightening your teeth was wearing clunky, metal braces. Since the first plastic aligner was produced in 1964, invisible aligners have exploded in popularity. From Invisalign® to Candid, there are a number of invisible aligner brands on the market for you to choose from. 

But not all invisible aligners are made the same. Some brands offer direct-to-consumer options while others, like Invisalign, require you to receive their aligners through an orthodontist. They can be pretty pricey too. However, most brands offer payment plans for people who don’t want to pay the entire upfront cost.

Have you been thinking about getting invisible aligners? Looking through all of your options can feel a little overwhelming. That’s why we’re featuring a full buyer’s guide to some of the top brands on the market! We’ll also be reviewing accessories, extra aligner options like Invisalign refinements, and more!

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Choosing the Right Aligner Brand

When it comes to finding the right invisible aligners, you need to take the following factors into account.

person holding invisible alignersYour journey to a brighter and better smile is almost ready to begin!

Choosing an invisible aligner brand can feel daunting and intimidating. It’s not a small or inconsequential choice. Your journey with these aligners will sometimes feel long and tedious. However, this long process will feel worth it once you see your new, dazzling smile! Choosing the right aligner brand will make a huge difference as well. 

When looking into different invisible aligner brands, there are several factors that you have to keep in mind such as their:

  • Price
  • Fitting procedure
  • Treatment Process
  • Reputation

Price

Invisible aligners typically cost around several thousand dollars. However, many dental patients can pay for some of these costs with the help of their insurance company. You’ll just need to make sure that your chosen aligner brand accepts your insurance. Some brands also offer monthly payment options for patients who need to stick to a strict budget. 

Fitting Procedure

Some brands will require you to make an impression of your teeth before sending it back to them. Taking an impression usually takes about 30 minutes. If you’d rather skip the putty, you can find a brand that takes 3D scans of your teeth instead. For instance, orthodontists can use the iTero 3D Scanner to take 3D images of their patients’ teeth in minutes. 

Treatment Process

Treatment usually takes several months. However, the timeline will vary depending on your respective smile issues as well as the brand you choose to work with. You’ll have a clearer idea of how long the treatment will take after you submit your impressions and your contact formulates the full treatment plan. 

Reputation

Like most people, you have probably already begun looking up reviews for different aligner brands. Speaking with different people who have received Invisalign, Candid, or other popular aligner brands can be extremely helpful. Many bloggers will also discuss their experiences on their websites or YouTube channels. That said, you will have to take some of their reviews with a grain of salt, as different people’s experiences with aligner brands can drastically vary.

Most Popular Invisible Aligner Brands

Invisalign, Candid, and SmileLove are just a few of the biggest aligner brands on the market.

dentist and patient with invisalign traysMake sure you do your research before selecting a brand!

Looking for different aligner brands? Check out these popular brands below!

Invisalign

Out of all of these options, Invisalign is probably the most well-known. Unlike the below aligners, Invisalign must be procured through an orthodontist. After your initial appointment, you will need to come back for follow-up appointments. Because of this, Invisalign might not measure up as highly as its competitors in terms of convenience. But it does give you some extra security knowing that your orthodontist can accurately track your progress and look out for potential problems.

Candid

Candid is another popular invisible aligner brand. Patients can either take impressions by themselves or visit an in-person Candid Studio to get them professionally fitted. If their team of orthodontists ends up deciding that you aren’t a good candidate for invisible braces, they will give you a full refund.

SmileLove

SmileLove distinguishes itself from competitors by its low price. The company does not offer payment plans for customers, but it does accept HSA and FSA insurance plans. Along with a full aligner kit, customers will also receive retainers and a whitening kit. 

Invisalign Refinements

Some patients will need extra aligners like Invisalign refinements for their smile journey.

invisible aligner and red caseInvisalign refinements are normal.

During your treatment, you might need to wear a couple of extra aligners. If you have Invisalign, they are known as Invisalign refinements—an option that is included in your Invisalign treatment pricing. These extra aligners are meant to help you get back on track if you have some stubborn teeth that are taking a while to move. You may also need them if you don’t wear your aligners enough. So make sure you are wearing them for at least 20 to 22 hours a day. Many other aligner brands do not offer refinements, which makes the ability to refine treatment an added benefit of choosing Invisalign.


Starting the journey to a straighter smile can be both exciting and nerve wracking. As soon as you get your first set of aligners, you need to make sure you are wearing them for the recommended amount of time and are regularly cleaning them. You might need Invisalign refinements to help you stay on track or experience some discomfort. But our fresh, edible Movemints™ are great for helping your aligners track properly and ease any discomfort from wearing them. Shop our full Smile Journey collection now!

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