If you’re using clear aligners, or retainers after treatment, then you’ll need to keep them in good condition.
Various providers of clear aligners will have their own care suggestions, from brushing your aligners with toothpaste to using a mild liquid soap.
Using cleaning tablets, like Retainer Brite, can provide a more thorough clean. Tablets can be used to sterilise your clear aligners, removing the bacteria that you can’t see and ensuring an all-over clean.
If you’d like to make sure that your clear aligners stay in the best possible condition, then you can use Retainer Brite to reduce the risk of damage and staining.
Are cleaning tablets a worthwhile investment when you’re going through teeth straightening treament? Read on for our guide and review of Retainer Brite, including how to use Retainer Brite and what results you can expect, as well as our own experiences of using the tablets.
What is Retainer Brite?
Retainer Brite is a brand of retainer and brace cleaning tablets.
Inside the box, you’ll find individually packaged tablets, said to kill 99% of bacteria to reduce health risks, staining and odour.
The formula includes Bicarbonate of Soda, Sodium Carbonate and Citric Acid. There are also other Retainer Brite ingredients, working together for full effect.
It is important to read the full ingredients before using this dental appliance cleaner. These tablets are not suitable if you have a Persulfate allergy.
Retainer Brite can be used to clean many removable dental appliances. You should be careful if your removable braces have any metal wires or components.
The Retainer Brite manufacturer is a company called Dentsply Sirona. This company makes a wide range of dental equipment and products, sold worldwide and supplied to dental professionals.
The Retainer Brite manufacturer is a company called Dentsply Sirona.
Other products sold by Dentsply Sirona include anaesthetic instruments, whitening products, composites, dental implants and x-ray equipment.
How is Retainer Brite sold?
You will receive a box of Retainer Brite tablets. Each tablet is individually packaged, to maintain freshness and quality.
Tablets are sold in boxes that are labelled ‘Retainer Brite Cleaning Tablets – 36’, to last a little over a month, or ‘Retainer Brite Cleaning Tablets – 96’ sold as a 3 month supply.
How do you use Retainer Brite?
To use Retainer Brite, drop one tablet into a cup of warm water. Once the water has turned blue and is bubbling, add your aligners or retainers. Make sure that they are completely submerged.
After 15-20 minutes, remove your aligner/retainer trays and rinse them thoroughly with water.
It is a good idea to use Retainer Brite daily, as well as brushing or cleaning your aligners in the way that the manufacturer suggests.
The Retainer Brite instructions emphasise not to make the water too hot. This doesn’t reduce the effectiveness but can cause your plastic aligners to soften and warp out of shape. When we tested them, they dissolved in cooler water without taking too much agitation.
Can you leave Retainer Brite too long?
Don’t worry if you forget that you’re cleaning your aligners or retainers. Though the instructions for use will tell you to rinse your aligners after 20 minutes, occasionally forgetting is fine.
Clear aligners and plastic retainers won’t suffer lasting effects if you leave them to soak too long.
Removable braces with metal components can be damaged if they’re left for more than 20 minutes in liquid. Clear aligners and plastic retainers won’t suffer lasting effects if you leave them to soak too long. That said, it isn’t a good idea to use Retainer Brite overnight.
In most cases, you will be expected to wear your aligners or retainers as you sleep. We found that it works best if you find 20 minutes whilst you’re eating so that you can re-insert your aligners as soon as you’ve finished your meal (after brushing of course).
Can you use a sonic cleaner with Retainer Brite?
Many people choose to clean their aligners or retainers with a sonic cleaner. Sonic cleaners use small, fast vibrations to shake the dental appliance and cleaning liquid within. Using a sonic cleaner may increase coverage and improve cleaning results.
Retainer Brite can be used with a sonic cleaner, though there is no official Retainer Brite sonic cleaner available.
Can I use Retainer Brite every day?
It is recommended that you use Retainer Brite daily, for a thorough clean of your aligners.
You might find it easiest to submerge your retainers whilst eating your evening meal. Then, you can clean your teeth a final time before reinserting your retainer for the night.
Some people wonder ‘Can I use Retainer Brite twice a day?’. Though there’s no real harm in doing this, such frequent deep cleaning does not provide extra benefits. During the day, you are best cleaning your aligners or retainers according to the provider’s instructions. Usually, this means using your toothbrush and soap, mouthwash or toothpaste.
If you wear removable braces or clear aligners, you should always brush your teeth after a meal or any drink that isn’t plain water.
Are Retainer Brite products the best retainer cleaning tablets?
Retainer Brite products, though not available in many stores, are very popular. If you’re wondering ‘Does Retainer Brite work?’, then you may find mixed reviews of this product.
This brand may not be the cheapest, but effectiveness comparisons in customer reviews often show that Retainer Brite cleans better than competitor products. That said, many people are happier to choose a cheaper alternative and accept a slight increase in staining.
You may find that Retainer Brite leaves your braces or retainers clearer and less discoloured than other brands of similar cleaners. When we tried it, we definitely found that it was effective at reducing staining. But, be prepared to pay more for this product than most others.
Has Retainer Brite changed?
If you are already familiar with Retainer Brite, then you might have noticed some differences.
In 2018, the Retainer Brite formula changed. Some people that have been using the product for several years will say that the new tablets are better, though many preferred the older formulation which used more Potassium Persulfate instead of Bicarbonate of Soda.
If you are buying Retainer Brite, look to the packaging for clues. The older box was roughly 50% bluey purple, whilst the newer packaging is almost totally white. (Edit: to confuse things further, the new formula is now in the original white and blue/purple coloured box as pictured above. Generally, you won’t find many suppliers who stock the old formula.)
The original formula was altered to follow FDA regulations, which means that the previous formulation cannot be found in any competitor product.
There are some complaints, in Retainer Brite reviews, that the new formula is not working as well as the old one. Frequent complaints are that clear aligners show signs of yellowing even with regular use. However, this does not necessarily mean that you’ll find a better product elsewhere. The original formula was altered to follow FDA regulations, which means that the previous formulation cannot be found in any competitor product.
People that have been using Retainer Brite for a long time might be confused by the formula change. They might notice that the water doesn’t turn clear like it used to, and instead stays blue after 20 minutes. New Retainer Brite tablets leave the water blue, even once they’ve finished cleaning your aligners or retainers. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the new tablets aren’t working like the older ones.
The Retainer Brite new formula may not be as popular as the old one. However, comparisons with retainers that haven’t been cleaned with this product still show visible results, something we’ve tested ourselves. Retainer Brite cleaners make aligners look less yellow when used every day consistently.
Can you use Retainer Brite to clean Invisalign braces and Vivera retainers?
Vivera retainers are amongst the most popular, as an Invisalign product. If you have finished Invisalign treatment, you may have Vivera retainers.
You can use Retainer Brite to clean your Vivera and Invisalign products. These are made of the same transparent BPA-free plastics as other clear aligners.
Retainer Brite is widely considered to be one of the best products to use with Invisalign. It is formulated to be gentle on clear plastic aligners and can be used as an Invisalign cleaning crystals alternative.
Does Retainer Brite expire?
If you don’t use your tablets within a few months, there’s no need to worry. Retainer Brite does expire, though has a shelf life of several years. You could easily buy a 1 year supply of these aligner cleaning tablets.
Each box has an expiration date. Using the tablets after this date might mean that they’re less effective.
Does Retainer Brite work with metal braces?
If you use removable braces with metal parts, then you should not clean these with Retainer Brite. Submerging metal parts in a fizzing, abrasive cleaner could cause permanent damage.
Metal solder points can weaken and corrode, with sustained use of Retainer Brite.
If you use removable braces with metal parts, then you should not clean these with Retainer Brite.
If you do clean metal braces in Retainer Brite then you should leave them for no more than 15 minutes. Making this choice is risky, so always check for signs of wear before reinserting your braces.
Is Retainer Brite safe?
As long as you use it according to instructions, which we found to be very simple to follow, Retainer Brite is safe to use. It is formulated to be gentle to plastic aligners and retainers, so should not damage them. It is also safe for human use, but you should rinse your aligner thoroughly before you put it back into your mouth.
Most people will not have any problems using Retainer Brite daily. Some people are allergic to Persulfates, and if that’s true for you then you should avoid Retainer Brite.
If you experience Retainer Brite side effects, you should immediately stop using the product.
There is limited evidence regarding Retainer Brite and pregnancy. If you are pregnant, it is recommended that you stop using Retainer Brite. Don’t worry if you’ve been using it, as there is no evidence that the product is harmful, though the manufacturers also cannot say that there are absolutely no risks. You can use toothpaste or soap to clean your aligners during pregnancy and should visit your dentist for regular checkups as hormone changes can affect your teeth and gums.
Is there a Retainer Brite website?
There isn’t a specific Retainer Brite website, though you can find the product listed on the Dentsply Sirona UK website.
It is possible to buy Retainer Brite wholesale, by calling Dentsply Sirona. Most people don’t need to buy in bulk and can find this product elsewhere.
Retainer Brite: Where to Buy
Without a direct Retainer Brite website, you will need to buy this product elsewhere. Luckily, it is widely available on websites like Amazon, Chemist Direct and Dental Direct UK.
If you are buying Retainer Brite online, make sure that you use reputable sources of UK stockists. You can buy directly from the manufacturer, Dentsply Sirona, who sells on Amazon.co.uk.
You can find Retainer Brite eBay listings but should check these carefully before you finalise your purchase.
If you would like to buy Retainer Brite in person, then you are unlikely to find it at your local supermarket. It is not available in Morrisons, Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Aldi or Lidl. You also won’t find this brand in shops like Boots and Superdrug, though in all of these places you are likely to find other brands of similar products marketed, usually, as denture cleaners.
You may find Retainer Brite at your local pharmacy if you don’t want to buy online.
If you’re looking to buy Retainer Brite, you can search around to find the best price.
36 tablets will typically cost around £7-9 including UK delivery.
You may save money by buying in bulk if you expect to be using Retainer Brite tablets for at least three months.
What about a Retainer Brite alternative?
There are many other similar products on the market. Products similar to Retainer Brite are often sold as retainer cleaners, denture cleaners or aligner cleaners.
You can find denture cleaning tablets, often in plastic tubes, at most of the big supermarkets. You can also find denture cleaning tablets in Superdrug, Boots and most pharmacies.
One of the other leading brands of similar products is Steradent. There is very little difference between Retainer Brite and Steradent. The formulation is similar, so you can expect similar results. The most notable difference is in the packaging, with Steradent tablets not being individually packaged.