A beautiful, straight, white smile is a coveted asset, and unfortunately, one that most of us don’t luck into naturally. Over the course of your life, you may be willing to overlook minor imperfections like a bit of an overbite, slight overlaps or gaps in teeth, or other small issues that you don’t think warrant a full set of traditional orthodontic braces. You might even be willing to live with major issues because, let’s face it, braces are expensive.
You’ll be glad to hear, though, that the field of orthodontics has seen incredible advances of late, resulting in an entirely new way of addressing misalignment and malocclusion. With invisible aligners, you no longer have to resign yourself to two years of wearing metal braces, with brackets that cut the soft tissue of your mouth and uncomfortable (and highly visible) hardware that makes you self-conscious.
Traditional braces do a great job of delivering a perfectly straight smile and aligning your teeth and jaws, but for teens and adults alike, they can definitely cause some embarrassment in the meantime. Plus, they cost roughly twice what you’ll pay for convenient, custom, invisible aligners.
The only snag is that you have to choose from several brands, many of which may seem, on the surface, to offer the same thing. As it turns out, comparison shopping is essential to making an informed decision about your oral health. Let’s deep dive on Smilelove and Smile Direct Club reviews and info – to see which is the better option.
Smilelove vs. Smile Direct Club: The Different Specs
Although you won’t wear invisible aligners for two years like braces, you’re still committing a significant amount of time to the process, considering you’ll wear your invisible aligner trays almost constantly (22 hours per day recommended, although you can remove them to eat, drink, brush, and floss) for 6 months, on average.
It’s also not without cost, even though invisible aligners are approximately half the price of traditional braces. The point is:
'You want to choose the brand that’s going to deliver the best experience and the best overall results.'
At first glance, Smilelove and Smile Direct Club seem similar since both offer a series of custom, invisible aligner trays that are sent directly to your home.
'What separates one from the other?'
Both are BPA-free products, but Smilelove immediately stands out because of scalloped edges that match your gum line (Smile Direct Club aligners are straight, overlapping the gums in some spots). The custom fit with Smilelove equates to less irritation of gums and greater invisibility during wear. Your kit even comes with a file, just in case you experience any discomfort along the edges, and you’ll also get chewies to help seat aligners perfectly and a handy removal tool.
Smilelove Aligners vs. Smile Direct Club
There are several factors to weigh when trying to choose between Smilelove and Smile Direct Club. Let’s start with the products you receive. Although both products offer custom fitted trays, only Smilelove delivers products that take both your teeth and gums into consideration, maximizing comfort and minimizing visibility.
As for the process, Smilelove works only with licensed orthodontists who have undergone the specialized training required to diagnose and treat misalignment and malocclusion (one of the reasons Smilelove reviews always point out the professional treatment offered). Smile Direct Club advertises care by both licensed dentists and orthodontists, so you might not get the same level of expertise and care.
Reputation is something to consider, as well. Whereas Smilelove seems to consistently generate 4.5 to 5-star averages across review sites, Smile Direct Club has garnered a 2.5-star average (although these are not the same review sites and they feature different numbers of reviews). The determining factors separating the two companies focus on product quality, timeliness, and most importantly, customer services, all of which Smilelove earns rave reviews for.
Smilelove vs. Smile Direct Club: The Timeline
What can you expect when you use Smilelove or Smile Direct Club invisible aligners? Smilelove starts by sending you an easy, at-home impression kit, which you send back for review by board certified orthodontists.
You’ll then be presented with a treatment preview showing the planned progression from your current smile to the perfect alignment you’ll enjoy when the process is complete. From there you simply select your payment plan, your custom aligners will arrive by mail, and you can get started. You’ll also get a set of retainers to wear following treatment, as well as a code for a free teeth whitening kit so you can make the most of your new smile.
The process for Smile Direct Club is similar. To get started, you can either visit a nearby SmileShop to get a 3D scan (20-30 minutes in-office) or you can order an at-home impression kit. Unlike Smilelove, Smile Direct Club refers cases to both licensed dentists and orthodontists, meaning your case might not be reviewed by an orthodontic specialist.
Next, you’ll be presented with your treatment plan, and if you choose to move forward, you’ll receive your invisible aligner trays in the mail, along with a teeth whitening kit. Once treatment is complete, you can order your retainers to maintain your newly straightened smile.
Smilelove vs. Smile Direct Club: Price
Like many invisible aligners brands, both Smilelove and Smile Direct Club offer different ways to pay for your treatment.
Normal pricing for Smilelove is $1895 for the Fast-Track Bundle, which includes the impression kit, aligners, retainers, and whitening, as well as extras like chewies, a removal tool, and a precision file for maximum fit and comfort. Smilelove also offers periodic discounts, like the Mother’s Day Special for just $1420, so you’ll want to keep an eye out. Other payment options include the Kit First Plan, where you pay $79 for the impression kit and then $1895 for aligners, retainers, whitening, and the rest should you choose to commit to treatment (for a total of $1974). For those on a budget, the $79/month payment plan is appealing, especially with discounts (like the Mother’s Day Special for $66/month).
Smile Direct Club offers a Single Pay option for $1950 that includes the impression kit or 3D image, as well as aligners and whitening kit, or you can opt for the SmilePay option, including a $250 down payment and monthly payments of $89 for 24 months (for a total of $2170). At the end, you will have to pay extra to purchase retainers for $99 either way.
Although Smilelove and Smile Direct Club appear to offer similar products, services, and prices, the details define the differences between these two invisible aligner companies, and they quickly add up in favor of Smilelove. The products are better, with precision, scalloped edges following the gum line for greater comfort and invisibility.
The care is better, thanks to partnerships with only licensed orthodontists, and reviewers consistently site the outstanding customer service Smilelove provides. The pricing is similar, but considering what you get for your money (impression kit, aligners, retainers, teeth whitening, and extra tools), not to mention periodic specials for pricing, you get a lot more bang for your buck with Smilelove. There’s no two ways about it. An apples to apples comparison puts Smilelove ahead of Smile Direct Club in every way that matters.