We’ve analyzed dozens of oral irrigators that are available on the market right now. We believe that the best water flosser for most consumers is the Waterpik WP-672 Aquarius. It comes in attractive black design, offers 10 pressure settings, and comes with 7 water flossing replacement tips.
However, it’s quite large and isn’t really meant to be portable. When it comes to smaller and portable water flossers, our choice is the X-WAVES IPX7. It has four operating modes, a powerful battery that works up to 50 days with a single charge, and comes with a wireless quick-charge station.
Why you should trust us
We have talked to several dentists and dental hygienists who helped us understand two things.
- What are the advantages of using a water flosser
- What to look for when buying one for personal use
On top of that we have tested and analyzed over 20 different portable and countertop water flossers from 5 brands that are available on the market.
We compared them side by side and picked the ones we believe are most suitable for average consumers who want to improve their dental hygiene and replace a clumsy string floss for an alternative.
Before we continue with our buying guide that will help you understand everything about all the different things water flossers bring to the table, check out the comparison chart of what we believe are the ultimate water flossers on the market right now.
Best water flosser: 2020 comparison chart
|Water flosser||Pressure settings||Tips||Portable?|
|1. Waterpik WP-672 Aquarius||10||7||No|
Are water flossers really worth it?
Water flossers (also called “oral irrigators“) are meant to be a substitution for dental string floss. Studies and surveys suggest that majority of U.S. adults don’t floss at all which is very alarming. The fact is that flossing might be even more important than brushing, but flossing habits have a lot of caching up to do.
A toothbrush is great for cleaning the surface of the teeth, but it has limited capabilities when it comes to removing plaque and food leftovers that are stuck in areas between the teeth. And those hard-to-reach areas between the teeth are the perfect place for food leftovers and bacteria to start forming into plaque and make the teeth rot.
The benefit of replacing the dental string with a water flosser is that flossing is usually more fun when it’s done with an electric device that uses water. Mechanical scrubbing of dental floss is also more aggressive which can often lead to pains and bleeding from gums.
Efficiency of water flossers has been well documented and researched in several clinical studies. However there are two very important things to take in consideration while analyzing the results.
- Many clinical studies are sponsored by certain big companies which can be very creative when it comes to manipulating statistics. Their job is to sell their products and if they can tweak certain statistics to pursue their customers into buying something, they certainly will.
- Many clinical studies are outdated. The technology behind water flossers has improved during the past 20 years which means that results of older clinical studies aren’t relevant any more.
Here are a couple of latest clinical studies that we believe are the most relevant.
- A 2017 clinical study included 45 patients ages 19 to 23 and tested them for reduction of gingivitis and plaque. The study concluded that patients using electric toothbrush experienced more plaque reduction and more improvement in gingival health compared to the patients that were using a traditional toothbrush.
- Perhaps the most famous evidence that electric toothbrushes gave the edge was presented by the Cochrane Oral Health Group. After carrying out a review of 56 existing clinical studies published from 1969 to 2011, the study concluded that switching to an electric toothbrush reduces plaque for approximately 11% after one to three months of use, and even up to 21% after three months of every day use. Switching to electric toobhbrush also reduced gingivitis for 11% after three months of use.
Now you know everything about the efficiency of water flossers. If you are still sure that you need one, it’s time to read our buying guide that will help you make the best decision possible.
Here are the five factors we think are the most important when buying a water flosser.
1. Pressure settings
- Importance: 8/10
The first difference between a basic and a high-end water flosser is the number of pressure settings. Basic flossers offer a single pressure setting, so if you aren’t comfortable with it wether it’s too powerful or too gentle, you have no choice but to stick with it. The more advanced flossers offer up to about 10 different pressure settings which can be adjusted with a simple press on the handle.
We believe that having more than a single pressure setting is one of the most crucial factors of a water flosser. Sometimes people suffer from sensitive gums and powerful water pressure coming from flossing tip might irritate them even more. This is where choosing a gentler pressure setting makes a huge difference.
2. Noise levels
- Importance: 7/10
Some flossers can produce a lot of noise, especially when operating at full power. This usually isn’t a big deal, but some (especially older) water flossers produce up to 75 decibels of noise which is somewhere between a normal conversation and the sound of a lawn mower in action.
No one wants to wake up to the sound of a lawn mower, so if you are planning on using the flosser while others in your house are asleep, you better find the one that is less noisy.
- Importance: 5/10
There are two types of water flossers in general; portable and countertop.
Countertop flossers are larger of the two types. They have a big water tank and the flossing tip is usually attached to a small handle that’s connected to the tank through a flexible hose. Most countertop flossers are powered by electricity from an outlet because they aren’t really meant to be portable.
Portable (also called “cordless”) water flossers are smaller in size. They are powered by rechargeable in-built batteries that provide around 2 weeks of flossing on average. Because they are portable, the water tank is smaller and built into the unit.
If you like to travel a lot, having a portable flosser is probably a good idea. However, countertop flossers have larger water reservoirs and usually offer more of everything.
- Importance: 4/10
Water flossers aren’t very expensive compared to similar dental care products such as electric toothbrushes. The average water flosser on our top 10 list costs somewhere around $40 while the most expensive ones reach about $70.
Because the price difference between basic and high-end flossers isn’t that different, we don’t believe that it should play a huge factor in the final buying decision.
- Importance: 5/10
The main purpose of a water flosser is to clean the spaces between teeth and along the gum line and the appearance of it doesn’t play a role in that. However if you are a design freak and you will be storing your water flosser in an open spot, it’s logical that you want a device that will look good and won’t spoil the appearance of your bathroom.
Top 5 reviews
Now without a further ado, here’s a list of what we believe are the best water flossers on the market right now.
1. Waterpik WP-672 Aquarius
- Several designs to choose from
- 10 pressure settings
- Comes with 7 flossing tips
- 3 year warranty
- It’s not the most affordable flosser on the market
Waterpik is the world’s most popular brand when it comes to water flosser. The company has been around since 1962 and when they invented the world’s first oral irrigator and started selling it on the market.
There are several different Waterpik flossers on the market and picking the best one wasn’t easy because many of them share almost identical features. However, the WP-672 offers everything one could expect from a high-end water flosser, it looks great and it was awarded the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Acceptance.
We believe that the older generation of Waterpik flossers was quite outdated and most of their models looked like old kitchen appliances from the 80s. But Waterpik has done a great job redesigning their water flossers and we believe that they will continue to look great for years to come. The WP-672 comes in several different designs to choose from (black, white, blue, grey, purple, pink, and several others).
The Aquarius offers 10 different pressure settings which is more than enough for most people to find the sweet spot. The gentler modes are appropriate for gum massage and for people suffering from gum sensitivity while more powerful modes are able to penetrate deeper between teeth and provide a more thorough clean.
Using the Aquarius is quite easy as well. The power button is located at the side of the unit just above the button for selecting appropriate pressure setting. The flossing tip is attached to a small handle that feel great in hand and has the button with an option to pause the water flow.
There are 7 Waterpik flossing tips included in the package which should last for well over 2 years of regular use.
The Aquarius is only compatible with 120VAC/60Hz outlets. It’s meant for use in North America only, so there’s little chance that you will find one in other parts of the world. Another downside is that although it’s quite compact, it isn’t the smallest flosser in the world and not very appropriate for traveling.
- 2 designs to choose from
- 4 operating modes
- Long battery life
- Wireless charging
- It’s not the most affordable flosser on the market
The X-WAVES is not the oldest player in the water flosser market and it’s nowhere near as popular as water flossers from Waterpik, Philips and other brands. But we believe that it brings enough to the table to be ranked on the second spot on our list of recommendations and it definitely has a few unique features that make it one of the most interesting portable flossers on the market.
It has a super long battery life, comes with a modern charging station and it’s ultra light. In fact, it’s lighter than a can of cola which makes it portable enough for backpacking.
Battery life and wireless charging
The battery of most portable flossers has limited capabilities and can last for up to about 14 weeks with a single charge. The X-Waves is equipped with a built-in 2000 mAh battery that can provide up to 50 days with a single charge which is exceptional by all means.
Another thing that stands out is the wireless charging station. When the battery is running low, simply place the device on the charging base and the battery will get fully charged in about 6 hours. The charging base can be plugged into an outlet, or an USB port, so you can charge it with your laptop or any other device with USB port. Although most of us don’t have a problem sticking the charging cable into the unit every now and then, the wireless charging makes a life with a watter flosser a little bit easier.
The X-Waves has four different operating modes. There’s a pulsation mode that pulses the water at high frequency for a gentle gum massage, a 40 PSI mode for sensitive teeth, a 60 PSI standard mode, and a 80 PSI mode with high water pressure for deep cleaning. Switching between them requires a simple press on a button that’s located below the 3 battery indicators in the middle of the unit.
Perhaps the biggest downside of this flosser is that it comes from a brand that isn’t as old or popular as the Waterpik.
- Black or white design
- 10 pressure settings
- UV sterilizer
- Comes with 7 flossing tips
- Water tank could have more capacity
The next flosser on our list comes from another company that’s quite unknown, but is starting to make an impact on the water flosser market; THZY. They offer an attractive countertop water flosser that comes in black design, has a large 600mL water tank and a storage compartment for replacement tips at the side, and offers adjustable water pressure.
It has a few nearly identical specs as our top pick, the Aquarius, but it has global voltage, so you can use it in Europe and other parts of the worlds as well.
The design is a matter of personal preference, but we think that the THZY is one of the best looking flossers out there. It comes in white or black design and it feels built nicely. There’s a storage compartment at the side of the unit where you can store your replacement tips. The best part about the storage compartment is probably UV sterilizer which keeps the replacement tips sterilized and free from germs and bacteria.
There are 7 replacement tips included in the package. 3 ordinary high pressure jet tips, 1 periodontal tip, orthodontic tip, dental plaque tip and a tongue cleaner.
The most powerful pressure setting of the THZY feels a little bit weak compared to the highest pressure setting of similar flossers. Is that a problem? Personally we prefer using medium settings, but some users might find the most powerful pressure setting too weak for their preference.
- Affordable option
- Large tank capacity
- 5 pressure settings
- UV sterilizer
- Comes with 12 flossing tips
- The highest pressure level could be more powerful
Despite the fact that the H2ofloss is probably the cheapest flosser on our list, it has the largest water reservoir and comes with the highest amount of replacement flossing tips. It’s quite a beast in an affordable package, but comes with a few minor downsides. But considering the fact that it’s about 3 times cheaper as a few top-end flossers, it’s an interesting option for consumers who want to save a few dollars.
Perhaps the biggest downside of the H2ofloss is the design. It looks similar to older Waterpik flossers which have already been outdated for years. Should this be a problem? Certainly not. It feels well built and the design doesn’t play a role in the cleaning efficiency.
4 pressure settings
The H2ofloss has 4 different pressure settings to choose from. While this is the average you get from a portable flosser, it’s not up to the standards of most top-end countertop flossers. The pressure settings range from 5 to 110 PSI and there’s a pause button on the handle to pause the water flow whenever you don’t need it.
Another area where the H2ofloss outshines most of its competition is the number of replacement flossing tips that are included in the package. There are four jet tips, 2 periodontal tips, 2 orthodontic tips, 2 tongue cleaning tips, 1 cleaning irrigation and 1 moisturizing mist spray tip.
- Contemporary design
- 3 pressure settings
- The package could include more replacement flossing tips
The Mospro is another portable flosser that comes from one of the less known brands. It looks attractive and we believe that it’s built better and offers more than many overpriced flossers that we decided not to include on our list of recommendations.
The Mospro looks contemporary and elegant and the unit feels well built. It looks like most other portable flossers, but there are a couple of minor differences. The tank is fully detachable which makes it easy to clean. There are a number of manufacturers who didn’t think that it would be great to detach the tank and give it a thorough clean from time to time which is an absolute shame.
There are two downsides of the Mospro. The first one is that there are only 3 different pressure settings to choose from which is about 1 less than we could expect from a high-end portable flosser. The second downside is the lack of replacement tips. There are two included in the package which is a lot less than you get with most other flossers. However it’s advised to replace the tips every 6 months which should leave you equipped for 12 months if you plan on using the flosser only by yourself.