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Oral B Indicator

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4 Reviews

Brand: Oral B / Type: Whitening Product

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    4 Reviews
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      25.03.2012 17:42
      Very helpful
      1 Comment



      A clever idea - a toothbrush that indicates when it needs to be changed!

      I make a big effort to take care of myself to the best standard possible (healthy eating etc) and in my opinion, personal and oral hygiene are as equally as important as the other aspects of my beauty regime. I take great pride in having flawlessly white, clean teeth and do the best that I possibly can to keep them strong, clean and white. I am quite fussy with toothpastes, mainly due to having sensetive teeth, however when it comes to toothbrushes, I am not too fussy although I do make sure to steer clear of cheap ones as a majority of cheapo toothbrushes are of awful quality and 'shed' their bristles. Oral B is a brand i've been aware of for a while and although I am familiar with a majority of their products, it didn't really cross my mind to pick up one of their toothbrushes - well, not until I saw a pile in the 'reduced' section of my local Tesco's priced at just twelve pence each! The RRP for these toothbrushes averages at a £3ish which in my opinion is still a reasonable price - not extortionate but not worryingly cheap and it's cheap enough to stock up on a couple at a time because toothbrushes aren't the most long-lasting items as dentists advise you to get a new one every 3 months.

      This particular toothbrush is a manual toothbrush which is marketed as an 'indicator' toothbrush, however Oral B also sell a majority of others including electric. The indicator toothbrush is described by Oral B as being gentle on teeth and gums, and they state that the new design of the bristles helps you to see when they're starting to wear down and get old, making it easy to decide when to replace your toothbrush. The name 'indicator' comes from the bristle's abilities to indicate when the brush needs replacing. The bush has a curved design which helps it fit around the corners of the mouth and clean better. The brush comes attatched to a rectangular piece of cardboard which has a predominantly blue colour scheme along with white font stating the product and brand name. The toothbrush itself is available in a range of basic colours including blue, pink, red etc. There is a colour for everyone and I imagine it would encourage younger people to brush their teeth as they're more brightly coloured so not too boring and basic.

      My toothbrush has a white handle with blue detailing and the bristles are white with a blue band. The blue band is used to indicate when you replace your brush - when the bristles have faded half way (from a blue colour to a light blue/white colour) it is time to replace it. The brush head is a good size but not too big and it's more long than wide so cleans the teeth length ways. The bristles are soft but if I brush too hard it can feel a little harsh, so I am careful not to put too much pressure onto the brush when I am using it. The design of the brush is long and slim with a slight curve, making it easy to grip. The brush has a soft rubbery feel to it meaning it's comfortable to hold. The brush is lightweight too. The brush head is just the right size to transfer toothpaste onto it straight from the tube in a quick and mess-free way and it fits into my mouth fine - it's an average size and I have not noticed it feeling any larger or smaller than the brands of toothbrushes I have used in the past.

      Cleaning my teeth with it is easy, it takes less than a couple of minutes to do all of my teeth - the sides, underneath etc and the bristles aren't scratchy or unpleasant - they're soft yet still sturdy and are compacted. I brush close to my gums and the brush has never felt too harsh and my gums never feel sore. It leaves my teeth feeling clean and smooth and it doesn't feel like it's missed any of my teeth. Once I have brushed my teeth it's easy to wash my brush. I just run it under the tap and then dry it off and place it back into my toothbrush holder. The toothbrush fits into my toothbrush holder fine, it's a bit of a tight squeeze but never the less, it fits! I have had this toothbrush since late January and it hasn't faded noticeably yet. It's not lost any bristles and the bristles don't look worn down or yucky. It's still its original white colour but I do make sure that I wash it thoroughly. I would certianly reccomend these toothbrushes and am very happy with mine.


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      • More +
        02.12.2011 12:28
        Very helpful



        I will continue to buy and use this brand

        Oral B is a brand I really know and trust in toothbrushes and I have personally bought and used many Oral B toothbrushes over the years and our little lad uses one at the moment. This particualr one I really like as I think it is really very clever and not too expensive. My other half thinks its a bit gimmicky, but I personally do not agree.

        I have used this particular type of toothbrush before mainly because you are supposed to change your toothbrush fairly regularly to maintain good dental hygiene, I have read about once every three months. I tend to forget or lose track of how long I have had it for and for this reason I thought this Oral B Indicator would be a good idea as it keeps me on my toes, so to speak!

        The idea is simple but clever. The toothbrush head is white and long and slim and the one I have has medium textured bristles (but you can get them either hard or soft). There is a blue line of bristles on this brush head which runs side to side. Once you have almost worn the brush out you will gradually see the blue part of the bristle changing and fading in colour until eventually it becomes white, then you know it is time you need to change your brush for a new one. Clever!

        The handle is long and slim and allows for a really good grip and also the head itself is long but slim at the same time, and this allows me to be able to reach right at the back of the mouth to get to areas which can often get missed.

        I really do recommend this brush - I think it is great value for money and worth the three pounds price tag.

        Review also posted on Ciao as sorehead


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      • More +
        23.11.2010 20:48
        Very helpful



        A Good Toothbrush with a selling gimmick.

        Most of the time you always know when you need to buy a new toothbrush. The bristles are worn and bent out from the head, the handle is discoloured, and there's that unspeakable build up of un-dissolved toothpaste and other unknown entities that have congealed around the base of the bristles. So, I thought it was time to change my faithful mouth cleaner, thus consigning it to the retirement duties of toilet rim cleaning. It's replacement was a blue handled Oral-B Indicator, mainly chosen because of the offer Sainsbury's had it on when I visited. It cost me a mere £1, but I gather that the regular price is considerably higher, around the £3.50 mark. Here are my findings on my new toothbrush.

        --Brush up on your Knowledge--

        One of the most well-known toothbrush brands for the last few decades has been Oral-B, producing standard and special toothbrushes for adults and children, as well as electric brushes, dental floss and other various oral healthcare products. The original Oral-B Indicator toothbrush was released in 1991, and in some shape or form has been a mainstay in pharmacies and supermarkets since then. This version has the full title of 'Oral-B 1,2,3 Indicator', 35 Medium.

        The first Oral-B toothbrush was designed by a periodontist in California in the early 50's, and was started as a small family company. In 1984 the company was bought by the massive health and beauty giant Gillette, that was in turn acquired by another American firm Procter & Gamble in 2005. Their UK base is in Weybridge, Surrey, although this toothbrush was manufactured in Ireland.

        A little known fact, an Oral-B was the first toothbrush to go to the Moon onboard the Apollo 11 mission.


        The toothbrush comes sealed in a blister-pack style package, a clear plastic bubble moulded to match the shape of the toothbrush mounted upon a thin card backing. The toothbrush sits securely inside, visible so you can guarantee it's unopened and clean. There is a hanging hook at the top of the pack for the shops to display the product easily. As with many blister-packs, it can be a little though opening it up, and be wary of the plastic edge, as it may give you a small cut if you are not careful.

        The design is not very unique at all I feel, with swathes of blue and white gradients giving the mental impression of freshness and cleanliness. The brand 'Oral-B' logo is prominent on the base of the layout in side profile, with '1,2,3' above it in the same fashion. The word 'Indicator' is printed in bold just off-centre to the brush inside, and there are also coloured bars to give the impression of the 'Indicator bristles' along with the head size. It's all very 'by-the-book', and although the actual design isn't original, it doesn't have to be. The brand logo really does stand out and is instantly recognisable among other brands on the shelf.

        On the reverse are statements of what this toothbrush can do for you, IE; 'Cleans Teeth', 'Gentle on Gums' and 'The Indicator bristles fade to tell you when the brush needs replacing'. It also states that the Oral-B brand is used by more dentists worldwide. I cannot prove or disprove these claims, but does make good reading to gain your trust in this product. These statements are (oddly) repeated in Swedish and Finnish . Also printed are the contact details for Procter & Gamble, and other small bits of company information. All of this is printed in block capitals and in blue text against the plain card backing.

        --Design and Quality--

        The toothbrush is approximately 19 centimetres in total length, with the head measuring 2 and a half centimetres, the neck 4 and a half centimetres and the remainder for the grip and handle. At it's widest (on the grip) it is just over 1 centimetre, with the bristles protruding 12 millimetres out from the head. It is very light indeed, about 20 grams, but feels sturdy, robust, and difficult to snap or break by accident. It is nice to know that it won't be in two pieces after stuffing it into an overnight bag or rucksack. The Oral-B logo is once again clearly printed at the very bottom of the brush handle.

        The bulk of the body is made from clear, strong plastic, with no visible air bubbles trapped inside to possibly create weaknesses. There is a nice amount of give in the neck to prevent you brushing to hard, but not enough to just uselessly bend away from your teeth. The grip is of a slight rubbery feel, which is easy to hold and difficult to slip out of your hand, and has 7 rows of the gripping material for where you would place your thumb. This gives you a secure but gentle grasp which is great for the actual brushing action.

        There are 30 tufts of bristles on the head, all flat cut to the same length, with 8 coloured ' Indicator' bristles in the middle. The bristles do feel a little soft, and can be easily pressed flat with minimal effort, but do not split or fall out and are secured well inside the head. On a quick comparison to other toothbrushes I have owned, it definitely ranks as one of the most comfortable to hold, as others have been either too short, not enough or no grip at all, and sometimes just generally cumbersome.

        --Indicator: Is there any point to it?--

        The indictor is supposed to advise of when your brush needs replacing, and after a few weeks the bristles should start to fade away, and when they reach halfway, it's time to replace the brush. Although I haven't had this toothbrush for long enough to see this happening, I really cannot see the point, and feel it is really a gimmick to sell this particular line of brushes. In my experience, it is quite obvious when your brush has worn out, namely when it's bristles have started to splay out, when it cannot remove soft tarter, light stains or pieces of food from between your teeth, or when the head becomes generally unhygienic to look at with toothpaste remnants and such like.

        Dentists recommend replacing your toothbrush every three months anyhow, so if the bristles have faded or not, your own judgement should determine weather you need a new one or not. Some would argue that they would find it difficult to 'feel' if the toothbrush is worn out, but if this is the case then just change every three months as suggested. If I was being really cynical, I would suggest that Oral-B place these bristles deliberately to fade faster than it actually takes for the brush to wear out naturally, thus them being able to sell more. I don't for one second think this is the case, but it is a thought to ponder.

        --Environmental Issues--

        The plastics and card used in the packaging are made from sustainable and recycled materials, and can be disposed of for recycling again.

        --Test 1: Brushing--

        Everyone's teeth brushing routine varies from person to person, I personally wet the brush thoroughly first, put toothpaste covering 2 thirds of the head, and start in circular movements around the back teeth and move forward as I go. The bristles do retain a fair bit of water, and the paste goes on without seeping down between them. At first the head feels too small to be effective, to a few seconds into brushing changes this opinion.

        The brushing action feels comfortable and doesn't scrape or irritate your gums. I have particular sensitive gums, which are sometime liable to bleed a little, and I was glad to find this didn't happen using this brush. (As it did with my previous one) I put this down to the texture of the bristles, and although they are indeed soft, they clean very well and get in the gaps easily where them little bits of food can sometimes lurk. The size of the head now becomes apparent, it can reach into the small crevices at the back of your mouth, round caps and over fillings. I gave this brush a pretty hard task to do, having had pork chops for dinner, and it removed the tiny bits of meat from my teeth with no fuss at all and without me having to brush ferociously or push harder.

        --Test 2: Cleaning--

        After the rinse and spit, holding the head under cold water does wash most of the remaining toothpaste away quickly, but I always give the bristles a quick flick for good measure as well. No toothpaste stuck to the handle or neck and again washed off without problems. Like I said before, the bristles do seem to retain the water quite a bit, so do shake or squeeze out any water left. In my experience, leaving a toothbrush full of water and placing it inside your bathroom cup makes the water drip down and slowly fill the cup up with a lime scale/paste mixture which doesn't smell nice after a week or so. (Proof of my student days there!)

        --The Verdict--

        As far as manual toothbrushes go then, it does the job very well, and my mouth was left feeling refreshed and minty clean, with no evidence of what meal I had just consumed. The design is nice and the grip is good to hold. It has been moulded very well from quality plastics, and designed to accommodate a fair amount of punishment whilst not giving a sensation like your cleaning your teeth with a garden broom.

        A well designed and functional product, yes. Does it need the indicator to tell you when it needs replacing? If you brush your teeth twice daily, and most of us should, (if you don't, I'm telling your dentist!), then you will know from experience when you need to buy a new tooth polisher, so I really cannot see the point in this. I have to admit however, it does makes a good sell. I'm sure people will, and have succumbed to this kind of gimmick, fearing that they cannot trust their own judgement enough and following Oral-B's indicator as professionals advice.


        It's a toothbrush. It cleans your teeth well, and for £3.50, you cannot complain about comfortable gums and clean set of teeth. There are cheaper toothbrushes on the market of course, but having used some of these in the past, their cheapness becomes very clear to understand. Unlike them, this is a quality and widely trusted branded product and therefore justifies the cost, and I would say one of the better toothbrushes I have owned. Whether is has an Indicator or not, it doesn't matter to me.
        Remember, don't forget to brush before bedtime. Goodnight.

        For more information on Oral-B products, visit there website at - www.oralb.com
        Thanks for Reading. Also Poasted on Ciao.co.uk. ©Novabug


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          21.11.2010 20:16
          Very helpful



          The brush with a handy feature

          I'll start this review with a confession... I own four toothbrushes. I didn't intend to buy four, they just gradually accumulated. One is of the sonic variety, and the second has a gimmicky whitening device. Brush number three is a small-headed, soft-bristled number, whilst the fourth is an 'Oral-B Indicator'. I've used Oral-B brushes for more years than I care to remember, although i'm not entirely sure why I prefer them to the other leading brands - they're just the ones that go into the supermarket basket more often than not. I'm not going to get bogged down with details and dates, but the Oral-B company is owned by Procter and Gamble (who seem to own everything these days), and is predominantly based in the USA. Oral-B's first brush was released in 1950, and since that time the company has prided itself on being at the forefront of innovation in the toothbrush industry. The 'Indicator' which I am reviewing today first hit the market in 1991, and has become one of Oral-B's bestselling products - but what is an indicator? and why should I own one?

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - THE INDICATOR - time to change your toothbrush? - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

          How do you know when your faithful tooth-scrubber has reached the end of its life? Is it when the bristles start to fray at the sides? or do you simply wait for the handle to drop off!? Oral-B's Indicator takes the guesswork out of the equation with its blue bar which is embedded into the bristles. This handy visual guide gradually fades with use, changing from its original shade to a washed out white colour. When the indicator bristles are half blue, half white, you'll know it's time to visit the shops - clever stuff! You should, in theory, replace your toothbrush every three months, and the Indicator simply functions as a reminder to do so.

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - PRICE & AVAILABILITY - the shopping options and cost - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

          Oral-B's Indicator brush is widely available from chemists and supermarkets, with the price heavily dependent on the choice of retailer. I normally purchase my indicator brushes from Tesco, although this time around I bought a new one for the purposes of this review from my local Boots. The Boots price is £1.58, whereas Tesco, Sainsbury's and Ocado are much cheaper at only £1. Compared to the other brushes on the market, I feel that the (supermarket) price is very reasonable, as many of the Colgate products are up there in the region of £2.50. Actually, it was only recently that the Oral-B Indicator sold for in excess of £3 - so it's great to see a reduction in cost.

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - PACKAGING - the protective enclosure for your plastic bristle friend - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

          The toothbrush arrives packaged in a cardboard and plastic container which is illustrated with a clinical and predominantly blue pattern. The reverse side contains a passage of text which explains "why the Oral-B Indicator is right for you", and its subsequent translations into other languages. A further sentence in bold tells us that Oral-B is "...the toothbrush brand more dentists use themselves worldwide" which, if true, probably will instil a fair amount of confidence from potential users. It's good to see that there isn't an overload of information, and happily the overly patronising 'how to brush your teeth' instructions are missing. Releasing the brush from the packaging is only moderately taxing due to an inclusion of a perforated section at the back which aids the removal process - a quick rip and you're done. Overall, the packaging design is pretty much bog-standard for a toothbrush, and is neither over-the-top or excessive.

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - DESIGN & APPEARANCE - a brush like no other - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

          At this stage it should be pointed out that the Oral-B Indicator is available with two bristle options - 'soft' and 'medium'. I generally choose the 'medium' variety as I feel that a slightly harder brush is able to remove more plaque from the teeth (even though it will probably not be as friendly on the gums). There's also a decent number of colours to choose from - blue, red, green, pink, and purple to name just a few. This time around, I went for the light blue (see pic), even though I was tempted by the pink (i've never owned a pink toothbrush). All of the colours are fairly pastel in tone and not too garish - this gives the brush a professional look which will probably appeal more to adults than kids. In terms of the measurements, the brush has a length of 19.3 centimetres, with a width of 1.3 centimetres at the widest point near the handle. The brush head measures 3 centimetres in length, and one centimetre in width - the size is just right, and it's a very well proportioned brush. So let's take a look at the design and ask whether it's better or worse than the competition.

          On first glance, the Indicator appears to be a fairly straightforward brush without any frills or fancy features - and apart from the special Indicator bristles, this is exactly the case. The brush head is small and perfect for cleaning those hard to reach areas at the back of the mouth, and the bristles are arranged in an ovular pattern rather than the usual rectangular layout - this actually doesn't seem to affect the brush's performance in any way whatsoever. The brush has a predominantly clear plastic construction, with a rubberised section running down the side of the handle. This provides a decent amount of grip, and ensures you'll have no nasty slippage incidents (don't ask...!). Compared to the Colgate 'Max White' brush that I also use, the Indicator is incredibly simplistic - where the Max White features a dramatically contoured handle which is tailored to the shape of the hand, the Indicator is only moderately curved, yet still manages to be comfortable. At the end of the day, it's a design lesson which teaches us that less can often be more.

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - THE INDICATOR BRUSH IN USE - the all important test section - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

          I would love to say that 'cleaning my teeth with the Oral-B Indicator is a beautiful experience' (or words to that effect) - but actually, the quality is very similar to the other brushes from the well known brands that I also use. The bristles, although classed as 'medium' on the packaging, actually feel quite firm - just right for my personal preference in fact. With a fairly gentle brushing action, the Indicator feels like it's doing its job rather well, removing whatever plaque has built up on the teeth. In and around the gums, the brush feels a little rough, but not so rough that it causes bleeding or any other issue. The shaft of the brush isn't completely rigid (it almost is, but not quite), and this works to protect the gums to a certain extent when brushing. An amount of flex is actually an important feature in a brush, and something which is often lacking in the cheaper makes. After i've finished brushing, teeth feel clean and debris free - although this of course is dependent on the brushing technique as well as the quality of the brush. I generally find that the Indicator section begins to fade in the region of three weeks to a month after purchase, and only reaches the 'please change me' stage at around four months. I know that three months is the recommended time to rid yourself of the old brush and get a new one - but i've got a few toothbrushes remember, so each one is going to be in my possession for a little longer.

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FINAL WORD - a brush with destiny? - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

          I'm not someone who is ever going to get over-excited about a toothbrush, as at the end of the day the quality from all of the leading brands seems to be of a similarly high standard. That said, Oral-B's Indicator adds a genuinely impressive feature in the form of its blue fading bar. Normally I keep my toothbrushes for too long - sometimes to the point of horizontally frayed bristles, so the Indictor serves as an important reminder to buy a replacement. Yes, many people may view the Indicator as a gimmick, but anything which prootes proper dental hygeine has to be a good thing.

          The overall design of the brush is good, with a fairly simple and slim handle which should comfortable fit into the majority of commercially bought toothbrush holders (not that I have one of those). Perhaps most importantly, the Oral-B Indicator provides a decent brushing experience, cleaning teeth in an effective manner and allowing the user to reach all areas at the back if the mouth. I personally can't find any real fault with this effective brush which has been "accepted" by the American Dental Association - although 'accepted' doesn't necessarily mean it has been approved over any other make. l personally think that four dooyoo stars would be a fitting reward for a brush which is a pleasure to use, and a real bargain at only a pound - excellent.

          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ADDITIONAL INFO - the Oral-B website - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

          If you're someone who has an unhealthy obsession with toothbrushes, the UK version of the Oral-B website can be located at www.oralb.co.uk. Here you can access information relating to all of the company's products including the Indicator range. There's also articles on choosing the right toothbrush for you - just in case you can't make up your own mind when in the supermarket!


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        • Product Details

          So smart, it reminds you when it's time for a new one / Did you know that a new toothbrush removes up to 30% more plaque than a 3-month-old toothbrush? The blue Oral-B Indicator bristles on the Oral-B Indicator fade to white when it's time to replace your brush and its new ergonomically designed handle offers exceptional comfort and control /

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