Advertised by Oral-B as the world’s first Bluetooth toothbrush, the SmartSeries Black 6500 promises to take your brushing to the next level.
But is it the future of a cleaner, whiter smile, or is it all just a bit of a gimmick?
The SmartSeries 6500 is packed with technology to transform your daily brushing. As well as the Bluetooth functionality, it also has different cleaning modes to suit a range of scenarios. It’s a mid-range toothbrush in terms of price and works with a range of brush heads.
- Get real-time feedback on how you’re brushing
- 5 different cleaning modes to choose from
- 3D technology gives a better clean
- Not the best battery life
- Takes a long time to fully charge
- Bluetooth isn’t for everybody
About the brand
Oral-B was started by a dentist back in 1950 and has since become part of the major Proctor & Gamble company. It claims to be the number 1 brand of oral care product used and recommended by dentists worldwide, based on surveys carried out by Proctor & Gamble on a regular basis.
They make a wide range of electric toothbrushes powered by Braun technology, with prices varying from around £30 for the entry models right up to £300 for the most expensive. They also manufacture toothpaste, water flossers and traditional string floss, manual toothbrushes and mouthwash.
Buy choosing an Oral-B toothbrush you know you’re getting a named brand renowned for quality. It will be tested extensively, so you know that it will perform effectively and be completely safe to use in a bathroom.
What’s in the box
When you buy the SmartSeries 6500 toothbrush you’ll get a number of accessories included. Alongside the main toothbrush, you’ll get a charging station along with a 2-pin plug designed for shaving plugs. The charging station has space to store spare brush heads. You won’t get an adapter with it so if you intend to charge it outside the bathroom you’ll need to buy your own 3-pin adapter.
You’ll also get a separate Bluetooth timer, which tells you when you’ve finished your two minutes of brushing, and a travel case for the brush and one brush head when you’re on the go. Finally, you get four different brush heads included, including the main crossaction brush designed to give the deepest clean. There’s a precision clean head, which tackles hard-to-reach areas, a sensitive clean head for anyone with sensitive teeth and gums that has extra-soft bristles, and a 3D whitening brush head with a polishing cup.
Look and Feel
The SmartSeries 6500 has a sleek black and silver finish and feels solid without being too heavy. The rubber grip doesn’t feel too premium though, and may not be to the tastes of everyone. Also, a lot of customers have reported that the black and silver style looks dirtier faster than a more traditional white model, so you’ll need to make sure you take proper care of it if you want it to look its best.
Where it does stand out is the stylish lighting up the sides of the toothbrush and on the power/settings buttons, when they’re actually illuminated. It’s a shame that the brush heads are white though – black or silver brush heads would arguably look a lot smarter when paired with the body.
As an Oral-B electric toothbrush you can count on it being effective at cleaning your teeth. It has Oral-B’s 3D technology which combines various movements – the round head oscillates, rotates and pulses to help break down up to 100% more plaque than manual toothbrushes, so you get the best clean possible.
You also get to choose from 5 different cleaning modes with your brush. The standard mode is Daily Clean, which you should use for most of your standard brushes. There’s also a more intense Pro Clean setting, designed to give a better clean with faster and tougher movements. You should avoid using this regularly, as it could end up damaging your gums if overused.
The third setting is designed for sensitive teeth. This will still give a good clean, but it won’t be as abrasive on your teeth if you have issues with sensitivity. Combine it with the extra soft sensitive brush head for a gentle yet deep clean.
If your teeth are fine but you have sensitive gums, use the gum control setting. It’ll tone down some of the vibration to avoid damaging your gums, without sacrificing too much in the way of cleaning power. Finally, the whitening setting is best if you want to remove some of the surface stains on your teeth. It uses more rotations, so that when partnered with the whitening brush head’s polishing cup you can start to see your teeth looking brighter.
Also, the Bluetooth functionality helps to make sure you’re getting the most effective use out of your toothbrush. Simply download the companion app to your smartphone and make sure you’ve synced your toothbrush with your phone.
It’ll then start timing you automatically as you start brushing, recommending when it’s time to change zone in your mouth and letting you know if you’re brushing too hard. You don’t have to always have your phone in your bathroom either as the toothbrush can store some data, letting you review it once you’ve brushed. This means you’ll get real-time feedback on how effectively you’re brushing.
However, some customers may not feel like the Bluetooth connectivity is worthwhile. And for those customers you may find alternative Oral-B toothbrushes that are cheaper but are just as effective. We’re always adding new toothbrush reviews to check out some of the less expensive options if you don’t feel like you’d make use of the Bluetooth feature.
The battery life of the SmartSeries 6500 may be one of its biggest downfalls. Fully charged, the toothbrush should last you for two weeks according to the manual, which is fairly standard for electric toothbrushes if slightly on the lower end of the scale. The problem is that the charging time to get to fully charged is 24 hours.
This means that, in reality, you’ll spend a lot of time with your toothbrush on charge – which can wear out the battery quicker. Some customers have reported issues after less than a year, with the battery struggling to retain much charge or just giving up completely. While these aren’t the majority of customers, it could be indicative of a problem with having a lower battery life that needs more charging than alternative options.
The price for the Oral-B SmartSeries 6500 can vary depending on when you buy it. However, despite a Recommended Retail Price (RRP) of £229.99, you shouldn’t ever expect to pay anywhere near that. It’s usually on offer for less than £90 and often around the £70 mark.
This makes it approximately twice the price of Oral-B’s entry level models, but significantly cheaper than the top-end Io series of toothbrushes.
Is it good value? In terms of performance, it’s probably at a similar level to slightly cheaper models, so it will depend on whether you value the Bluetooth functionality, which is where the premium comes in. If not, you can probably find a cheaper toothbrush that does just as good a job.
Using the Oral-B SmartSeries 6500 with clear aligners
Your teeth deserve the very best care, which is a great reason to choose a toothbrush like the Oral-B SmartSeries 6500. If you wear clear aligners to straighten your teeth, these deserve the best of care as well. Regularly cleaning your clear aligner trays keeps them stain-free and free from bacteria. You’ll reduce your risk of gum damage, dental problems and yellowing aligners.
Before you use your clear aligners, check how you should clean them every day. Some providers suggest just using warm water, rinsing your aligners very thoroughly. Other providers recommend a mild soap or detergent to keep your trays clean. Always use cool or warm water, never letting the water get so hot that it melts or damages aligners.
In a majority of cases, using an electric toothbrush is the best way to clean your clear aligners. An electric toothbrush is powerful and thorough, as well as fitting easily into small gaps in your aligner trays. Just make sure that your aligner provider doesn’t warn against electric brushes. On rare occasions, manufacturers use softer plastic to make their aligners. Some plastics may not withstand an electric toothbrush’s power.
The Oral B SmartSeries 6500 is a reliable electric toothbrush with a number of features to help give you a deeper clean. The Bluetooth functionality will split customers – some will find it useful while others probably won’t bother to keep checking their phone – but the choice of cleaning settings and the 3D cleaning technology used by Oral-B ensure you will get a good clean. The battery life is an issue, since it doesn’t hold a huge charge and takes a while to power up when the battery is low, and you may find similar toothbrushes that are slightly cheaper that may have a longer battery life. Overall it’s best suited to someone who would really engage with the companion app and find the Bluetooth features useful.