Candid claims to be the future of teeth straightening, using the power of AI to align teeth up to 30% faster than treatment with an orthodontist and at a lesser cost. These attractive promises naturally drew attention, from crooked teeth sufferers to media outlets like Forbes and Business Insider. This Candid teeth review explores the brand and its products in detail, to help you decide if Candid is worth the buy.
Overview of Candid
This Candid teeth review will only relay the truth, giving you an honest look at the brand and if it really deserves all the hype it’s getting. There are tons of teeth aligners and whiteners on the market like SmileDirectClub and Invisalign. Does Candid bring anything new to the table? Read on to find out.
Candid has a cool entrepreneur-on-a-mission founder tale. In 2012, recent Stanford graduate Nick Greenfield worked at Lyft and received dental insurance for the first time in his life. He looked into getting his teeth straightened, but that avenue proved to be a dead end—he found out that this treatment would cost thousands of dollars. Nick wouldn’t accept a future with crooked teeth, and set his Ivy League brain power to the task of developing a low-cost alternative.
Greenfield was inspired by the success of Warby Parker, Casper, and other businesses that thrive in the direct-to-consumer market. Greenfield and co-founder Lilla Cosgrove launched Candid in the fall of 2017, having raised $63 million (!) to offer a better option than braces.
As a Millenial who wore braces for 6 years, I’m inwardly cursing at the timing of this innovation. I repped those babies throughout high school and the first year of my undergrad, dreading picture day and yearbook photos. A four-year-old I used to babysit once asked if I was a robot because of my “metal teeth.” Gotta love kids’ brutal honesty, right?
Fortunately, Candid customers numbering in the tens of thousands are benefitting from this new and improved era of teeth straightening. The Candid team includes a network of 50 leading orthodontists, with 13 retail locations throughout the US and counting. We’ll get into the orthodontic science behind their teeth alignment program next in this Candid teeth review.
How Aligners Work
Why does Candid claim to offer such a special treatment? After an appointment at a Candid Studio, you’ll receive personalized 3D-printed aligners (this is the fancy AI we mentioned earlier). This is as modern as teeth alignment gets, and it’s pretty clear that braces will soon be left in the past. Good riddance, you will be missed by no one.
Aligners work by keeping your teeth in their new position guided by a customized mold structure. Your teeth will constantly shift leading up to their final alignment. Most Candid customers are only required to wear their aligners at night in the first two weeks, followed by all-day use.
If you don’t have time to read the juicy details of this Candid teeth review, here are the highlights:
- Better Business Bureau accredited
- Personalized treatment through AI/3D-printed clear aligners
- Approximately $1900-$4600 less costly than competing treatments
- Average treatment time is 6 months
- No commitment to continue treatment
- 100% remote monitoring by orthodontists
- Free priority shipping
- 10,000+ satisfied customers
- Treatment not eligible for bite correction or serious alignment and spacing issues
- Only available in the US
Candid vs. Competitors
Our Candid teeth review found helpful details on how the brand differs from its competitors—and those differences are huge. The average Candid treatment is 6 months, whereas braces are worn for approximately 18 months.
Candid’s teledentistry model provides the same quality of care as you’d receive in-office, without the extra costs. Candid cut out clinical overhead, office visits, and clinical markups, resulting in approximately $1900–$4600 in savings compared to the cost of alternative treatments.
Check out how Candid pricing differs from its top competitors:
|Price||100% remote monitoring||Doctors are orthodontists|
Candid customers have the option of paying the $2400 up front or $99/month for 24 months, beginning with a down payment as low as $399. These prices include the remote monitoring and all additional products that come with the aligners.
Are You a Candidate?
Potential customers are asked to fill out a 30-second survey to find out if they qualify for treatment. Several circumstances make you an unsuitable candidate, including having a permanent retainer or being under the age of 16 (unless all your baby teeth have fallen out). Candid does not treat severe alignment and spacing issues or offer bite correction.
Additionally, you will not be a suitable candidate if you haven’t been to the dentist recently or have upcoming work scheduled. Primary oral care needs have to be addressed before treatment, including cavities, tooth decay, and unhealthy gums.
Next up in this Candid teeth review, we’ll get into specific products and their associated costs.
Candid Starter Kit Review
Candid’s Starter Kit is the first step in their treatment. You take photos and impressions of your teeth, then a Candid orthodontist assesses your case and designs your treatment plan, no office visits necessary. There is no commitment to buying aligners, which is definitely a good sign: Candid won’t pressure you to continue treatment and you won’t be stuck in a program if you’re not happy with your plan.
The Starter Kit comes with six items, including instructions on how to create your first aligner:
- Cheek stretcher
- Putty catalyst and aligner base
- Bite guide
- Lower teeth trays (2)
- Upper teeth trays (3)
- Prepaid return shipping box
The Candid Starter Kit has a regular price of $95, currently on sale for $47.
Candid Clear Aligner Kit Review
The Clear Aligner Kit includes the Starter Kit, so it’s essentially your entire treatment for $2400. Along with items in the Starter Kit, the Clear Aligner Kit comes with all your aligners for the treatment and free whitening foam.
Candid aligners are made of premium thermoplastic, free of BPAs and phthalate. This material makes the clear aligners comfortable, durable, and stain-resistant.
Candid Whitening Foam Review
Candid’s hydrogen peroxide-based Whitening Foam can be used along with aligners, allowing you to straighten and whiten your teeth all at once. This product is only available to Candid aligner customers for $25.
The Whitening Foam is easy to use: ½ a pump in each tray, pop the aligners back in, then spit out the excess foam. The solution gradually whitens teeth without causing tooth sensitivity. It’s also gentle enough to keep in your trays overnight and can be used as an aligner and retainer cleaner up to 4 times a day. Sweet bonus: it freshens your breath!
Candid Retainer Review
Retainers are slightly different than aligners: they’re thicker and are meant to be used after the alignment treatment. Retainers are highly recommended to maintain the new position of your teeth and are generally worn overnight.
Candid Retainers have a customized and comfortable fit. This product includes a retainer, carrying case, and free whitening foam for $99. This is a highly reasonable price, considering a retainer purchased through an orthodontist can cost up to $500.
Candid Whitening Pen Review
The Candid Whitening Pen is formulated to remove tooth stains within minutes, with effects lasting up to 60 days. You only experience these results if the solution is applied once daily, so you have to be diligent with application.
The whitening pen contains the same formula used by dentists, so no surprises there. The pens are available in packs of three and are currently offered for $20 at a $10 discount.
Candid Teeth Reviews: What Do Customers Think?
Brands can make as many promises as they want, but it really comes down to customer feedback in this Candid teeth review. There are 1087 reviews for Candid on their website, with an impressive 900 rated 5 stars. These are some of the glowing testimonials:
“My goal for my wedding was perfect teeth, and Candid got me there.”
“My overall experience was great! I’m very happy with my new smile, highly recommended!”
“Good price, easy process, fun and my teeth look straight and my smile is beautiful!”
There were a few minor negative comments. One customer said that he experienced serious dry mouth after wearing the retainer at night. Others complained of shipment delays and difficulty getting in touch with customer service. There were only four 1-star and seven two-star reviews out of over a thousand, and all of these complaints received a reply from customer service.
Website reviews can be deceiving, so we looked elsewhere to get the full story for this Candid teeth review. Candid was rated 5/5 by theteethblog.com and 4/5 by customersadvocate.org. A Candidco review on Business Insider had this to say: “You’ll like Candid’s services if you want to straighten your teeth with subtle, non-obtrusive aligners without spending an exorbitant amount of money or time.”
Candid has a Better Business Bureau accreditation, with an overall rating of A+. Despite this rating, the company has 52 complaints related to product and service, most of which describe the aligners as unsuccessful, despite progressing through the entire treatment.
Our Verdict on Candid
After hours spent researching the brand, we now come to the crux of this Candid teeth review—are Candid aligners really worth it? Many signs point to yes. Having an A+ BBB accreditation is relatively rare, and positive reviews vastly outnumbered the negative ones.
Candid is designed to fix several types of teeth issues through custom-fit aligners, but every set of teeth is different. The aligners may not work for you, but it’s much more likely that they will.
Alongside highly complimentary reviews, the treatment is significantly less costly and time consuming than other alignment methods. You don’t have to rationalize a higher price point for good results, which is true for other products on the market.
All in all, this Candid teeth review recommends the aligner treatment. A straight and brighter smile for less money and within a shorter time frame? Do you hear that? Listen… It’s the sound of braces choking in aligner’s dust.
Candid Promotions & Discounts
Our Candid teeth review turned up some promising promotions. Candid is currently offering 50% off starter kits for a limited time. They also have a Refer Friends and Family Program: you receive a $100 e-gift card for individuals who you refer that purchase Candid aligners. Candid runs contests throughout the year and you can sign up for notifications to stay in the know.
Sign Up for Candid
Starting the alignment process with Candid is pretty easy:
- Have your teeth scanned at a Candid Studio
- Get your clear aligners within 2-3 weeks, additional treatment products included
- Set up the Dental Monitoring app by logging into portal.candidco.com
- An orthodontist tracks your process with scans you take from your phone
Given that you’re required to visit one of their retail stores to begin treatment, Candid is only available if you live in the US. Bummer.
Candid Retail Stores
Candid stores are currently closed due to COVID-19, but you can sign up with your email on their website to receive an update on their reopening. For now, Candid is allowing new customers to order starter kits and skip the initial in-person visit.
If you prefer to wait until you can consult an alignment expert in person, once stores reopen again you can visit a Candid Studio in Austin, Boston, Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Irvine, New York City (Chelsea, Upper East Side), San Francisco, San Jose, Santa Monica, Washington DC, and West Hollywood.
How do you clean aligners?
Cleaning your aligners is really simple: rinse them off with cold water, plus an optional scrub with a soft bristle toothbrush. Never rinse your aligners with hot water or soak them in mouthwash.
Can you eat and drink with aligners?
You can eat and drink with aligners. Candid recommends that you rinse them off with cold water and brush and floss your teeth when you’re finished. Hot liquids like tea and coffee are fine, unless you like your drinks scalding hot. In that case, take your aligners out first.
How long do the aligners last?
Candid recommends that you change your aligners every six months.
Can you play musical instruments, exercise, and kiss with aligners?
Good news: yes, yes, and yes.
Is Candid treatment covered by insurance?
This depends on your specific coverage. You may be reimbursed for up to $1300 by your insurance provider, depending on your policy. Candid can file a claim with your insurance provider on your behalf with procedure code D8040 (limited orthodontic treatment for adults).
In-network customers can save upfront on treatment, no waiting for reimbursements or after-the-fact savings. Candid will take off the price before you begin treatment. This policy applies to customers with Anthem insurance group including Anthem Blue Cross, Anthem BlueCross BlueShield, Empire BlueCross, and Empire BlueCross BlueShield.
Candid Shipping Policy
Candid customers receive free shipping throughout the US. After your initial visit to the Candid Studio and after your treatment plan is generated, you’ll receive your aligners by mail in approximately 2-3 weeks.
Candid Return Policy
You Are Not a Suitable Candidate
In this case, your payment will be refunded in full. However, this policy does not apply if you send back a starter kit with distorted or unusable models.
Candid Studio Customers Only
Once you receive your treatment plan, you’ll work with the team to adjust the plan and have it approved by the orthodontist if necessary. If you’re still not satisfied with your treatment plan, you’ll receive a full refund. Note that once you accept your treatment plan, Candid begins producing your custom aligners and a refund will no longer be available.
Kit Return Policy
Since your Starter Kit or Alignment Kit cannot be used by anyone else, returns for these products are not accepted (unless your orthodontist deems you an unsuitable candidate).
If you receive a defective product from Candid, call them at 1-844-295-6915 or email portal.candidco.com to request a replacement.
New Treatment Plan
Given your orthodontist feels that a new treatment plan is clinically advisable, you will receive one at no extra charge.
If you have questions beyond this Candid teeth review, contact the team via:
- Customer service phone: 1-844-295-6915 (Monday-Sunday 9am-7pm EST)
- Chat form on their website
- Email: portal.candidco.com