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~Is there a toothbrush in your pocket or are you just pleased to see me?~
Life provides us with plenty of small embarrassments and annoyances and my use of Oral B electric toothbrushes has given me more than my share of both. There are only so many times that colleagues can point out that your luggage is 'buzzing' before your stuttered explanations that it's a toothbrush get met with 'Yeah, whatever you say' and a leering wink. Second only to the embarrassment is the annoyance when you realise that your brush, freshly charged up for your journey, has been buzzing away throughout your flight and is now flatter than a pancake. A flat small-head electric toothbrush is only slightly better than utterly pointless.
I've been using electric toothbrushes faithfully for over 15 years and always I've used Oral B. They are wonderful toothbrushes but they suffer a serious design fault - that the switch is easily knocked on when you pack it in a suitcase or even your handbag. I travel every week so unlike most people who probably won't be too bothered if their brush isn't good at travelling, the problem of brushes that get knocked on accidentally has been bugging me for a long time. I went through a phase of travelling with an Aquafresh 'buzz' brush which was the best alternative I could come up with - but a poor substitute.
I'm away so much that not having a proper electric toothbrush will impact on how much I get told off by my dentist at my 6 monthly check-up. Consequently I was excited to a degree that most people would find entirely unnatural when I discovered I could get a travel box for my toothbrush.
~So I got on the case~
Despite knowing I needed a case, I hesitated for quite a long time because the price used to be around £15 which seemed a lot for a plastic box. After yet another week of flat brush frustration, I gave in and bought one for the rather more reasonable price of just under £9. I tracked down my toothbrush case through Amazon.co.uk and bought it from one of their traders - Seaview Shavers. I went through Seaview's site direct to save an additional pound on the product and postage compared to buying with Amazon. With a choice of white or silver, I went for silver - recognising that bathrooms have too many white things in them already and it's easy to miss a white box on a white sink and leave it in a hotel room. It's also easier to see if you've cleaned the box properly when the background plastic is not white. (I use an old manual toothbrush to get the gunk out of the corners).
~How do you know if it's the right one?~
To make sure that your brush will fit, you need to turn it over and read the number on the bottom - in my case my Oral B 500 has a handle model 4729. Brushes with the numbers 3728, 4736, 4729 will all fit in this box. These cover most of the current product range but do check before you order.
The box arrived after a couple of days and I have used it constantly for the last year without any problems. The plastic is grey with a slightly sparkly mica effect to give it a bit of (very mild) bling. It's a toothpaste box - how much bling can you deal with?
~How it works~
There's no need for an instruction book unless you're really not very practical. It is - as the computer people always like to say - intuitive! The case has space to securely hold the brush handle and up to two brush heads. This means when my husband is with me on a short trip, he can put his brush head in as well and we don't need to take two full brushes. The heads clip neatly and firmly into place with very little wasted space. You'll need to turn the handle on its side if you have the same model as me - others might go in straight, I'm not sure. The box has a panel of small holes on both top and bottom to allow air through the box and stop things getting too icky inside. It closes firmly and has never yet fallen open in transit.
~Worth every penny~
It might seem like a ludicrously silly thing to give me so much pleasure but I'm pretty obsessive about looking after my teeth and I don't feel they are clean if I'm forced to use a manual toothbrush. Getting this case gives me confidence that my brush is safe and will arrive at its destination with as much charge on it as when I pack it into the box. I won't have any unpleasant hotel experiences having to scrounge nasty throw-away brushes from reception in the middle of the night when my brush decides to go flat. Additionally, the case means that the brush head doesn't get squashed in a wash bag or covered in leaky shampoo or such like. Electric toothbrushes also have a nasty tendency to get a bit coated in toothpaste splashes and in my pre-case days, I regularly found toothpaste marks on clothes in my suitcase.
This won't suit everyone. If you never travel, never take your toothbrush anywhere or are happy to substitute with a manual brush when you need to, you can save a few quid and not bother. But if you use an Oral B electric toothbrush and travel a lot, this is just what you need.
Oral B / Type: Travel Case / Toothbrush