Maybe you want to correct the alignment of your teeth for purely aesthetic reasons. Or perhaps it’s a more serious issue. In fact, there are a lot of reasons why people with crooked teeth consider correcting it, including gum disease, worn enamel, or even TMJ.
Leading invisible braces brands like Invisalign make it easy, but now there are a variety of Invisalign alternatives to offer a similar process for a lower price.
With crooked teeth, you are more prone to gum disease because it’s a lot harder to clean between your teeth when they are crooked. Unfortunately, plaque can build up, increasing the bacteria in your mouth, ultimately leading to gum disease.
Also, if it’s your bottom row of teeth that have some crowding, one or more of your teeth are likely to protrude out and rub against your upper teeth. This can lead to excess wear of the enamel on your teeth over time.
Lastly, TMJ is a common disorder for people with a teeth alignment issue. TMJ is caused from too much wear on your jaw and the hinge joint. It’s really painful and can cause your jaw to pop and lock, as well as create pain in your face, neck and shoulders. Often times, crooked teeth is associated with TMJ.
If you are interested in correcting the alignment of your teeth, but want the discretion of a clear set of aligners that aren’t as noticeable as traditional braces, then you’ve probably considered Invisalign.
More and more people are turning to clear aligners to correct their crooked teeth since they can be quicker and cheaper than traditional braces.
Unfortunately, Invisalign does come with a pretty hefty price tag. If you aren’t interested in investing quite that much money in your aligners, the good news is that there are a lot of Invisalign alternatives on the market.
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One of the big things to consider when evaluating the various Invisalign alternatives out there is how severe the misalignment of your teeth is. You also want to take into consideration whether or not you have time (or the desire) to go into an office for the impressions and check-ups.
Generally, the aligners that can correct a more serious misalignment are going to be more expensive and require in-office visits. They are also typically more expensive. However, the aligners that have you create impressions at home and do virtual visits are going to be cheaper in price.
Is there a cheaper alternative to Invisalign?
Yes. And not just one cheaper alternative to Invisalign. As at-home aligners, as well as in-office aligners have gained a lot of popularity, the number of competitors in the market has increased. They are practically all cheaper than Invisalign, but of course, there are some features that make them different than the Invisalign aligners.
Best Invisalign Alternatives
We’ve put together a guide of the best Invisalign alternatives, reviewing each of them for you below. That way, you can review each and determine which will be the best Invisalign alternative for you and your teeth. Depending on the severity of your alignment issues, as well as your preference to have in-person visits or do everything from home, you will be able to find the right system for you.
Byte (review) is a very affordable, at-home aligner system that is a popular alternative to Invisalign. The company is based out of Los Angeles, but the orthodontists and dentists that oversee the treatment plans are located all over the country.
With Byte, you receive an impression kit for you to take teeth impressions at home. Based on those impressions, Byte’s orthodontic team creates your custom clear aligners made of BPA-free, medical grade, polymer film. You can also opt for a nighttime-only treatment plan.
They are meant to correct your teeth safely and slowly, so you wear each aligner for one week and then move on to the next set of aligners. You will need to commit to wearing the aligners for 22 hours a day in order to achieve the fastest results.
In addition, you will have to use HyperByte for 5 minutes each day. Hyperbite uses a vibration-based therapy that can help reduce the discomfort of the aligners and get them to fit around your teeth better. The end result is that the treatment time ends up being much quicker than with other Invisalign alternatives.
On average, it takes 2-4 months for your teeth to be corrected. Overall it is widely-regarded as one of the best Invisalign alternatives.
- BPA-free, medical grade, polymer film
- Quick results
- Exclusive Hyperbyte system
- Need to wear aligners 22 hours a day
Another popular Invisalign alternative is Candid. Candid (review) is unique in that it offers the option for you to either have an impression kit delivered to your home to take your teeth impressions, or if you prefer, you can visit a Candid studio and have your impressions done there.
Unlike some other companies that only require 3 photos, Byte requires 8 photos of your face and teeth to go with the impressions or digital scans.
Another thing that makes Candid different from its competitors and other Invisalign alternatives is that they work exclusively with licensed orthodontists. Many aligner companies work with a dentist or orthodontist, but Candid focuses on the fact that orthodontists go for more schooling, which is better for you as the patient.
Once you receive your aligners, you will notice that you get a series of them so that you gradually move your teeth into the corrected position. As you progress, you will take scans from your phone and check in with your orthodontist remotely, every 10-14 days. And, each time you have a check-in, it will be the same orthodontist so they can properly track your teeth’s progress.
The aligners from Candid are durable and stain-resistant, as well as BPA-free and phthalate-free. The average time to see results is 6 months.
- Option to do at home or in office
- Work only with licensed orthodontists
- Frequent check-ins
- Can be a longer process
Straight My Teeth (UK)
With Straight My Teeth, you have the option to wear them during the day or nighttime only. Nighttime only will be more discreet if you don’t want anyone to notice you wearing aligners, but it will be a longer process.
Something that Straight My Teeth points out about their teeth aligners is that they are handcrafted and trimmed to the gum line. This ensures a very snug fit as well as helps them be more comfortable to wear. That’s a big deal considering the amount of time you are wearing the aligners every day.
You are sent an impression kit so that you can create your dental impressions in the comfort of your home. The kit comes with enough impression trays to take up to 5 impressions, as well as disposable gloves, cheek retractor, and a pre-paid return label. They really make it as easy as possible to get the impressions done and returned back to them.
Once the impressions are received, your custom treatment plan is developed. Then, you just need to start wearing your aligners! There will be no in-office visits, so if you aren’t a fan of going to the dentist, then this is probably a good thing for you.
On average, most teeth are corrected between 6 and 14 months. Unfortunately of all the best Invisalign alternatives, this one is mainly for UK and EU patients.
- Option to wear during day or night
- Aligners are trimmed to the gum line
- Includes gloves, cheek retractor, and return label
- Can be a length process, especially if you choose nighttime only
AlignerCo is another Invisalign alternative that provides at-home aligners, offering a cheaper option that doesn’t include office visits. You will order an impression kit in order to get the process started.
Once you receive the kit, you will take your dental impressions at home, mailing it back in to AlignerCo so that they can create your custom aligner treatment plan for you. The aligners are not only customized for you, but are also handcrafted and trimmed to the gum line, which really optimizes their comfortability while you wear them. Since you need to wear them 20-22 hours a day, comfort is key here.
Each set of aligners is worn for two weeks, at which point you change to a new set that will help to gradually correct the alignment of your teeth. Typical treatment time for patients is 6 to 12 months.
- Less expensive
- Handcrafted and trimmed to the gum line
- Impression kit includes cheek retractor, gloves, practice putty, and a pre-paid shipping label
- Longer treatment time
New Smile is an at-home aligner brand that is an Invisalign alternative. To determine your treatment plan, you will order an impression kit that allows you to create dental impressions at home.
You can video chat with an impression specialist from New Smile that will help you with step by step instructions to make sure that you are doing it properly.
And, if you choose to just purchase the impression kit before purchasing the whole kit, you will have the option to get a full refund if the New Smile orthodontist determines that you aren’t eligible for treatment, based on your impressions.
You’ll also get to see a 3D treatment preview of what your teeth will look like once they’re corrected. What’s nice about this is that you have the opportunity to approve it before your custom aligners are made.
In addition to receiving the aligners, which are made from Raintree Essix plastic, you also get retainers and teeth whitener, too, as part of the package. Most people see results with corrected teeth between 4 to 6 months after wearing them.
- Video chat to walk you through the impression process
- Fully refundable impression kit
- Retainers and teeth whitener included
- Have to wear the aligners 22 hours a day
Smile Direct Club
Smile Direct Club is another Invisalign alternative, that, similar to Candid, allows you the option of either ordering an impression kit for you to do at home or visiting a SmileShop to have the impressions done in person. This is nice for people who want the flexibility and option of either going in-person for the impressions or not.
Once you receive your aligners that are printed in BPA-free plastic, you will wear each set until you graduate to the next tray so that the straightening of your teeth is gradual.
With Smile Direct Club, you have options as to when you wear the aligners, depending on your timeline and how comfortable you are wearing them during the day. If you choose to go with the original clear aligners, you will need to wear them for 22 hours a day in order to correct your teeth alignment. The advantage here is that teeth are usually straightened for most patients in 4-6 months.
If you don’t want to wear the Smile Direct Club aligners for 22 hours a day, you can always choose the Nighttime Clear Aligners. You only need to wear these for 10 hours each night. But, it will be a longer process before your teeth are corrected. It’s really a matter of personal preference when it comes to treatment options.
See how Smile Direct vs Candid compare here.
- Option for at-home or in-person impressions
- BPA-free aligners
- Can wear all day or nighttime only
- Nighttime only choice means longer treatment time
ClearCorrect may just be the most similar alternative to Invisalign. That’s because with ClearCorrect, it’s actually a dental lab that offers office visits, and they based your aligners on a dentist’s prescription for you.
In fact, your dentist or orthodontist must be registered with ClearCorrect in order for you to use their system. Of course if your dentist or orthodontist isn’t registered, then you can always search to find one who is registered with ClearCorrect.
You will have your impressions done in the office, and based on those, they will put together a treatment plan and create a set of clear aligners customized to fit your teeth and get them corrected. In order for the aligners to work properly, you will need to wear them for 22 hours a day, similar to other aligner brands.
As you progress, you will meet with your doctor in the office for check ups. This is again, the differentiating factor with ClearCorrect from other brands, and the thing that makes them most similar to Invisalign. Also, the price for ClearCorrect is much closer to Invisalign, due to the office visits.
- Most similar alternative to Invisalign
- Meet with a doctor in person to check progress
- High quality aligners
- More expensive than other options
Six Month Smiles
Another Invisalign alternative, Six Month Smiles offers something unique, stating that they have the world’s most advance aligner material. They use Zendura® FLX™ for their aligners, which is supposed to provide a more comfortable experience for the patient. Not just that, but the material also provides good clarity, durability, and a scallop shape for the aligners that flex easily against your teeth.
Once you sign up with Six Month Smiles, they help match you with a dentist in your area that works with Six Month Smiles. The dentist will take 3D images of your teeth to better understand your particular teeth concerns. Then, the dentist will work directly with an orthodontist with Six Month Smiles to create your custom treatment plan and clear aligners.
You wear each set of aligners about two weeks each, changing them out as your teeth begin to gradually change and become corrected. You will meet with your dentist for check in appointments in person so that he can evaluate your teeth and their progress. At the visit, he will give you your new aligner set to wear.
When you go for your first visit to the dentist, it’s possible that he will put “attachments” or “buttons” on your teeth. The attachments are small and tooth-colored, and will help your teeth move more accurately. The good news is that there’s little to no discomfort with them and the attachments are what makes the Six Month Smiles system work so well. In fact, 6 months is the average time for teeth to be corrected, but it can range from 4-9 months.
- Use Zendura® FLX™ material for aligners
- Meet with a dentist for check ups
- Short treatment time of 6 months
- Might end up getting attachments on your teeth if necessary
What is comparable to Invisalign?
ClearCorrect is the closest alternative to Invisalign. That’s because they are both capable of handling more severe teeth misalignments. With ClearCorrect, like Invisalign, you will go into a dental lab and meet with a dentist who will take impressions of your teeth right there. Once you begin wearing the clear aligner system, you will check in with the dentist from time to time to make sure your teeth are progressing the way they need to be.
Is ClearCorrect as good as Invisalign?
biggest competitor of Invisalign. Probably the biggest difference between the two aligners is that the Invisalign aligners are a thicker plastic, which makes them very durable. ClearCorrect aligners are a bit thinner in material. The advantage to that though is that they aren’t as visible when you are wearing them.
How can I straighten my teeth without Invisalign?
If you have decided to straighten your teeth without using braces, and are not using Invisalign, there are certainly a number of Invisalign alternatives on the market. We’ve discussed a lot of the major competitors in our guide above. They are all good brands, each offering a little something different depending on your needs.
What is the most convenient alternative to Invisalign?
When it comes to convenience, you may prefer an at-home aligner brand since that means you won’t have to go into a dental office for in-person visits. Not only does Byte work for you form the comfort of your home, but also because of its unique Hyperbyte system, you will achieve your results much quicker than with a lot of other brands. On average, people see results from Byte in 2 to 4 months. So, if you are looking for the convenience of no office visits and the shortest amount of time to wear the aligners, then you probably want to consider Byte.
Are clear aligner financing plans available?
Clear aligners are costly. Not as costly as traditional braces, but it’s still an investment. And if straight teeth is what you are after, then it may be worth it for you.
The good news is that even though they can be expensive, many of the clear aligner brands offer payment plans that usually include a down payment, followed by smaller monthly payments. This flexibility with aligner companies is great in that it makes it an affordable option for almost anyone.
Which clear aligners are the least noticeable?
When it comes to clear aligners, the whole point of having them instead of traditional braces is because they aren’t as noticeable. You can be a bit more discreet with your aligner system than you can braces. And while all the brands have aligners that are clear in color, some are going to be a bit more visible than others.
The clear aligners from ClearCorrect are very thin, which means they are not going to be as noticeable as other clear aligners. The disadvantage could be though that since they are thinner, they may not be as durable as some of the other brands.
Does insurance cover clear aligner treatment?
Many dental insurance plans will cover a portion of the cost for clear aligners, just as they do for traditional braces. However, the coverage can vary, so you will want to make sure you understand exactly how much will be covered and how much you will be responsible for paying. You can usually get a good idea of this by talking to the aligner company and letting them know what your insurance carrier is.