The Oral-B kids electric toothbrush is a perfectly satisfactory product.
It cleans the teeth well, with a more gentle, sensitive cleaning mode.
The different Disney themes of this brush are engaging for children and the associated app helps motivate kids to brush for the right time.
The battery life is greater than claimed but it could be better and it would be nice if there was a battery status icon.
It does the job it needs to do for a reasonable price, and I can’t really fault it for that.
However, all things considered, the Sonicare for kids electric toothbrush is a better product for children and parents alike.
- The grip on the handle helps to securely hold the brush
- Timer and pacer encourage brushing for the recommended time
- 2 cleaning modes with different power settings
- Stickers to personalise the brush handle
- Disney magic timer app helps encourage longer brushing
- The battery life is better than claimed
- No icons on the handle to show which cleaning mode is selected
- Battery life isn’t ideal
- No battery status feedback
- No connectivity to the Disney app
- Better alternatives exist
Consider these other brushes
I strongly advise considering the Philips Sonicare for kids connected toothbrush.
It feels like a more complete product that serves both the parent and child better. I believe it captures the imagination of the target age group more effectively and is from a parent’s point of view a more desirable brush to use on a daily basis.
If you have a limited budget the Oral-B kids brush is the more affordable option and still cleans the teeth as well.
For kids aged 6 or above you may want to consider the Oral-B kids 6+.
It is a more grown-up option for those independent youngsters.
For further explanation on suitable electric toothbrushes for kids, view our kids electric toothbrush article.
Oral-B kids 3+ in-depth review
As a parent myself, I know all too well the challenge of completing twice daily toothbrushing.
Getting the brush into the mouth is one thing, completing a thorough clean is another.
A manual brush is perfectly adequate, but electric brushes are proven to be more effective than manual and often bring additional benefits to the parent and the child.
The Oral-B kids 3+ one example and it uses bold colours and popular film/tv characters (amongst other things) to help encourage your kids to take better care of their teeth.
Variants of this toothbrush
The first thing to note is that Oral-B has a couple of ‘for kids’ electric toothbrushes.
Sadly, the names are not all that logical, Oral-B themselves just call each ‘Oral-B Kids Electric Toothbrush’.
However, amongst a number of differences, the primary one is the age range they are designed for. They are either 3 years + or 6 years +.
It is the 3+ that is featured in this review and is available in the variants spoken about.
The number of variants and the availability does seem to differ quite considerably, but at the time of writing, I count 6 variants of the kids 3+ electric toothbrush.
They are as follows:
- Super Tooth
- Toy Story
- Star Wars
- Disney’s Frozen
- Disney Princess
As you might have guessed, each has a slightly different theme.
What this means is each themed brush comes with 4 stickers that wrap around the lower third of the brush handle along with a brush head that too has a sticker (pre-fritted) to the neck of the brush.
Each handle has the same functions and features. But each has a different coloured rubber grip on the handle.
Those colours are as follows:
- Super Tooth – Blue
- Toy Story – Red
- Spiderman – Red
- Star Wars – Red
- Disney’s Frozen – Blue
- Disney Princess – Pink
All makes sense so far.
The exception to this rule, however, is the ‘Super Tooth’ variant.
This does not come with any stickers, nor does the brush have a particular theme, other than a superhero tooth that is shown only on the outer cardboard box for the toothbrush.
But, oddly the ‘Super Tooth’ variant comes with a standard (adult) sized sensitive brush head, whilst all others come with the slightly smaller, but still soft, Stages Power kids toothbrush heads.
Why does one variant have a different sized brush head? Your guess is really as good as mine.
What’s in the box?
- 1 x Oral-B kids 3+ electric toothbrush handle
- 1 x Kids brush head
- 1 x Charging stand
- Oral-B oscillating & rotating movement
- Removes 100% more plaque than a manual brush
- Rechargeable battery
- 8+ day battery life
- 2 minute timer
- 30 second pacer
- Smartphone app to encourage children to brush
Design, usability, clean & general use
As outlined in the variants section of this review, there are different versions of this toothbrush.
I have and show in the images throughout the ‘Spiderman’ variant, just be aware the sticker/colour differences exist.
I and the team here at Electric Teeth will be the first to tell you that a manual toothbrush is perfectly adequate when used correctly, there are many advantages to going electric.
The biggest appeals when going electric for kids are the extra movements in the brush head. Just a few seconds spent in use and the bristles are going to make many more passes over the teeth and gums than they would a manual brush.
Any parent will likely know how 2 minutes of teeth brushing can seem like a lifetime for a young child. Therefore the extra effectiveness of the electric brush can pay dividends.
Other benefits come as a result too. A timer and pacer, along with kids favorite characters are key to this brush and can make a big difference to the user and their ability to learn good habits and achieve healthy teeth and gums. More on all of these shortly.
So, let’s get into all the detail about this toothbrush then.
Starting with the outer box, it may come as no surprise that this is designed to capture the attention of you and your children.
Bold colours and in most cases the presence of a popular character from well known movies, resonate well and perhaps, initially at least, make wanting to own a toothbrush more exciting.
Once out of the box, it will be the toothbrush itself and the stickers that appeal most to the kids.
There is no child friendly user manual or educational documentation included, which I think is a shame. A toothbrushing chart or maybe a story on the importance of brushing would be nice.
However, I believe Oral-B would argue that the Disney magic timer app (more on that later) does a lot of this.
In addition to the toothbrush handle and head, you get a charging stand and user manual and nothing more. No extra brush heads or travel case.
These extras are far from essential but would be nice. Truthfully, it is not bad for the price.
The brush is relatively easy to hold. It has a tapered design where it is thicker at the top of the handle and thinner towards the bottom. Oral-B’s more premium models tend to have a more uniform shape down the length of the handle, which I prefer personally.
The body of the handle is made from plastic, which is gloss white in colour, but the red rubber grip that is wrapped around the majority of the brush handle not only makes the brush look smart and easy to hold, it reduces the very clinical look of the white plastic.
It is a 360 degree grip with small dimples all over it that really give the fingers something to grip onto.
You might think how hard can it be to grip onto a toothbrush handle, but for the small hands of children, it can make a big difference.
The gloss white plastic is visible in the lower third of the brush handle and at the neck of the brush, where the brush head attaches.
In the lower third, on the front is the Braun Oral-B logo and on the back is some regulatory information. There are also 2 dashed grey lines to help you align the stickers to the handle. When fitted the regulatory information remains exposed on the back, but the Oral-B logo on the front is covered.
It is this lower part of the handle which can be covered with 1 of 4 stickers that come included with select variants. Wrapping around the handle it continues the theme found on the box and the brush head.
The stem of the brush head is generally pre-wrapped in a sticker matching the theme of the handle too.
Easily missed, but a potentially useful feature is found on the rear of the brush handle. A small raised piece of rubber extends very slightly just below the neck of the handle. This stops the toothbrush from rolling if laid on a countertop.
On the base of the handle is a recess into which fits the charging prong on the charging stand.
The handle itself is a sealed unit, which means it is designed to resist water and can happily be rinsed under the tap.
The detachable brush head slides on and off the metal prong on the top of the handle. This prong feeds down inside the handle to the motor and battery, which are not user accessible.
1 brush head is provided in the box and should last 3 months on average.
It is beneficial to replace the head sooner if the bristles are frayed or show signs of wear.
This brush is designed for children aged 3 years and upwards and there is a natural tendency to believe that a child might need a smaller brush head.
There is varying opinion on what the right size brush head is and this plays out in the variants on offer from Oral-B.
The Super Tooth variant comes with a standard, adult sized sensitive brush head. All others come with a slightly smaller brush head, designed for kids.
I am not sure why one comes with an adult sized head and the others kids sized.
It is worth noting that the smaller kids head does have ‘extra soft’ bristles which are great for the more delicate mouths of young children. They appear marginally softer than the Oral-B Sensitive brush head.
Now, Oral-B’s standard brush heads are small in comparison to Sonicare brush heads so there are already some benefits here. However, I should point out that the Oral-B so-called ‘kids’ brush heads are only marginally smaller than the adult head. I would estimate about 10% smaller, so the actual size difference between adults and kids is minor.
Given that parents or guardians should supervise brushing up until the age of about 7 or 8 years, the adult brush head should be fine, but there may well be very marginal benefit if your child is a bit smaller with restricted space in their mouth.
As a parent, if you opt for one of the themed handles, you really need to continue to purchase the kids heads to keep that theme running through the life of the brush.
Adult brush heads are not wrapped with a sticker and are plain white plastic in most instances.
The whole range of adult brush heads fit and work fine on these handles, but just be aware you can’t buy the stickers for brush heads separately, they come pre-fitted when you buy them.
Given that there are multiple different themed brush heads at the time of writing, you might not be surprised to hear that not all stores will stock each theme and tracking down the right brush head for your child’s brush can be tricky. Larger stockists like Walmart will have you covered, as should Amazon.
The front mounted power button needs to be pressed once to turn the brush on.
There are 2 cleaning modes on this brush, Sensitive and Daily Clean. A single press of the power button will launch the Sensitive mode. If you press it again it will change to Daily Clean mode and a third and final press will turn the brush off.
The sensitive mode offered on this brush delivers fewer movements to the brush head from the brush motor. Your child in turn gets a softer and more gentle brushing experience. This is particularly useful if moving to an electric toothbrush for the first time or your child doesn’t like the increased power available from the daily clean mode.
Normally, on Oral-B toothbrushes, Daily Clean mode is offered first, rather than Sensitive, but it has been switched around on this kids brush, to offer the more gentle mode first. This is a nice touch.
It is not the biggest frustration, but the brush does not have any way of showing you what cleaning mode is running. Some brushes have LED icons, but not here.
The brush also does not remember the mode you are using. So, if the Daily Clean mode is your preferred mode, every time you power the brush on you need to press the power button twice.
A standard brushing cycle is for 2 minutes.
From the moment the toothbrush is powered on, the built-in timer begins working.
Once 2 minutes have passed, the timer will alert you as the user by pausing the motion of the brush head briefly 3 times.
This changes the brushing sensation, as well as the sound and is to you and your child a clue that you have hit 2 minutes.
The brush does not automatically turn off at the end of the clean, you or your child need to do this manually by pressing the button again.
The other part of the timer is the 30 second pacer, also known as the quadpacer.
What this does is try to encourage even brushing of the teeth over the 2 minute brushing period.
At 30 second intervals, the brush will pause briefly, changing the sound and cleaning sensation. Like the 2 minute timer, this is the clue to do something. In this case, it is to move from 1 quadrant to another.
The idea is you virtually break the mouth up into 4 sections (quadrants) and spend 30 seconds cleaning each.
Starting with the top right, you can move to the top left, bottom left and bottom right.
At the end of the 2 minute cycle, you will have in theory given the teeth an even clean and not focused purely on the front teeth for example.
Brushing for the full 2 minutes is very important, but just as important if not more so, is the right technique. Make sure you help your child learn how to clean your teeth properly.
Now where this kids toothbrush goes a stage further is with the Disney magic timer app that helps encourage this 2 minutes of brushing.
The app is free and available for Android and iOS.
Your 3 year old might have a smartphone or tablet to play their games on, but if not it’s going to be your smartphone that they will need to use, so do bear that in mind. Considering toothbrushing is usually completed in the bathroom that can be wet and have hard tiled surfaces, your smartphone may be at risk.
It is one app that is designed to work with a range of different brushes.
Once loaded on the phone, from within the app, you scan the brush/packaging using the phone’s camera and it intelligently detects what theme to apply to the app.
A nice touch is that you can set up different user profiles. So for example if you have 2 children and each has a different brush with a different theme, the app changes that theme as and when you load into each child’s profile.
The idea is that the app is used at the same time as brushing.
On-screen there is a countdown timer, an upbeat song is played and graphics are slowly revealed as the child brushes.
Providing they brush for the full 2 minutes then the graphic is shown in full and a reward is then gained. This is added to a virtual sticker book.
The principle is that the child is motivated by getting the stickers in the book. Completing the book is only achieved through regular brushing.
The app keeps a log of how often the teeth are cleaned via an on-screen calendar too.
Even if you have a super proactive child who tries to brush too often, the app says that you have brushed already and you should do it again in the evening or the morning.
As this countdown timer is shown on screen it does also show to change where the child is brushing in the mouth, thanks to animated graphics at 30 second intervals.
Sadly, the phone and brush have no Bluetooth pairing like some other models such as one from Sonicare for kids.
What this means is that the brush and app are not in sync. So, in theory, the app could be counting down but your child does not actually have the brush switched on and be brushing.
In practice, I believe they will go almost hand in hand and as a parent, you will likely be present, but you can probably understand my concern.
The app works and is engaging, but as a parent, you might have concerns about having to use or hand over your smartphone as the kids brush their teeth.
Ideally, the phone needs to be positioned in a way that a child can see the screen whilst keeping the device away from danger. Some sort of holder would be nice, but this is not included.
Other nice touches within the app include tutorial videos for kids too.
Of course, the results of this brush vary from child to child and how motivated they are by this sort of approach, but our own hands-on testing suggests that most children love this and find brushing much more enjoyable and more importantly brush for longer.
The handle itself is a sealed unit, which means it is designed to resist water and can happily be rinsed under the tap.
Placed inside the handle is a rechargeable battery. It is a Nickel Metal Hydride battery, which is ok, but many other models from other brands and Oral-B themselves use the more desirable Lithium-Ion batteries.
You get a minimum of 16 cleaning sessions of 2 minutes, or 8 days from brush, but no warning when the battery is low. More on this in the battery life section of the review.
The motor inside the handle is not the most powerful available on an Oral-B brush. But it is not all about power! It does deliver more movements than any manual brush can and is more than adequate for children.
Another small thing is that it does not offer ‘pulsations’ which is what adds the 3rd dimension to Oral-B’s 3D cleaning action you may have heard about.
The brush head on the kids toothbrush oscillates and rotates, but not pulsates. In other words, it is a 2D cleaning action. It is far from an absolute deal breaker, it still cleans the teeth well, but more premium models potentially do a better job.
If for any reason the toothbrush does stop working, there is a standard 24 month guarantee that comes with it.
Summary of design, usability, clean & general use
- Varying designs/colours to suit childs tastes
- Comfortable brush to hold and use
- Easy to grip onto
- 1 brush head included
- 2 cleaning modes (Sensitive & Daily Clean)
- No way to easily show which mode is selected
- Does not remember the last mode used
- Built-in 2 minute timer and quadpacer
- Smartphone app to help encourage brushing
- 2 year warranty as standard
I have already briefly mentioned the battery earlier in this review in that the battery built into this brush should last 8 days.
I can confirm from my time testing that it does in fact exceed 8 days by quite some margin.
I was achieving on average 17 days on a full charge. That is based on the usual 2 cleans a day, each 2 minutes in length. That is a total running time of 70 minutes or 34 brushing sessions.
This is double the claimed battery life.
Why don’t Oral-B claim a longer battery life if it lasts this long.
Did I just get lucky?
So, the good news is that 8 days should be the minimum rather than the maximum you get from it on a single charge.
I must admit that in the last few minutes of brushing (day 15/16), you are consuming the last bit of power and the brush does slow a little, so where possible avoid draining it completely flat.
Often I like to recommend toothbrushes that have at least 2 weeks of battery life. It feels like a good minimum, to cover situations like vacations etc.
Technically, the Kids 3+ is achieving this, but the manufacturer claimed life is some way below a 14 day benchmark. I am pleased but a little disappointed too.
The battery in this handle is a Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) battery. It is not user replaceable.
Functional it is, but lots of toothbrushes now use Lithium-Ion batteries, which many consider to be better. It is a shame this latest variant of the kids brush did not gain a new battery.
Frustrating is the fact that there is no battery status icon, so you cannot actually tell when the battery is running low. You get no feedback from the brush. Well, you might hear the motor straining a little.
The only feedback you get is when the brush slows down as the remaining power is used up.
Therefore you either need to track when you last charged the brush or keep it on the charging stand fairly regularly to keep it topped up.
The stand is a fairly typical Oral-B charger, white in colour with a 2 pin power adapter hardwired into it.
The stand itself supports voltages of 110-130, so fine for the USA and Canada, but you will need voltage and potentially plug adapters if you travel overseas to Europe for example.
It is perfectly fine to leave it on the stand all the time, when not in use.
Of course, because it has no battery charging light/status icon there is no way of confirming it is actually charging or if the battery is full. The brush should take about 16 hours to fully charge.
Summary of battery life
- Minimum of 32 minutes of usage time or 8 days usage based on 2 cleans a day
- Actual hands on testing achieved 70 minutes or usage time or 17 days
- No battery status icon on the brush handle
- Takes about 16 hours to charge fully
- A charger included in the box
- 2 pin power adapter hard-wired into the charging stand
- Charging stand supports 110-130v
- Can be left on the charging stand
Price & where to buy
I have included links to buying options here at the start of the review.
In the section below, I discuss the price more generally and in relation to similar products.
The suggested selling price of the Oral-B kids electric toothbrush is around $50 Canadian.
For the most part, these brushes sell around this price, but naturally, competition amongst retailers and offers from Oral-B themselves means that the prices fluctuate a little and it is often possible to purchase one of these for around $40.
The brush comes with 1 brush head in the box and that head should be replaced every 3 months.
Brush heads can be purchased in various pack sizes, but as an average, you are looking at a cost of CDN$8 per replacement head.
Assuming a typical cost of $40, over 3 years the kids toothbrush will cost $128 or 12 cents per day.
This is reasonable value, particularly when you compare it to the Sonicare for kids toothbrush at 16 cents per day.
With a 25 per cent price premium the Sonicare kids brush is expensive. This is not helped by the higher cost of the brush heads. However, the interactive nature of the Sonicare and the battery life might make it worth it.
Please note that all prices quoted are approximates and will vary based on location, supplier and time of purchase. These figures were correct at the time of writing and should not be relied upon as hard fact, but used as a guide during your decision process.
Summary of price & where to buy
- List of buying options included here
- Recommended retail price of $50 for the Disney themed brush
- Typical selling price of $40 for the Disney themed brush
- Brush heads are approximately $8 each
- Works out at around 12 cents per day over 3 years
- Good value all things considered
Reliability & long term use
When you are investing in a toothbrush you want it to last and on average you can expect most electric toothbrushes to last a minimum of 3 years, with the vast majority lasting longer than 5.
From extensive hands-on time with the Oral-B kids 3+, I cannot see any reason why this brush should not serve you well.
The weakest point tends to be the battery. After repeated charges and discharges it can fail and should it, they are not easy to replace.
Oral-B is a big brand within the industry and has the knowledge and experience to produce quality products. To back you up there is a 2 year warranty included with the brush which will cover you should it fail, providing it is not as a result of user damage.
To prolong the life of any brush giving it a rinse and a wipe down to remove grime that builds up is a must.
Putting aside the very confusing range of variants and designs that this toothbrush is available in, I can say that this is a perfectly satisfactory and functional toothbrush for children.
It offers a very important timer and pacer, your children can personalize the brush a little with stickers and you can be assured that the small round brush head will do the best job it can to clean the teeth.
The Disney magic app is useful, but it is a shame that there is no communication between the handle and the app.
Whilst this brush does the job, I think most parents and kids alike will prefer the Sonicare offering.
Yes, it is a little more expensive. But, for the extra spend, it could mean considerably less hassle when trying to encourage a good tooth brushing routine.
- Height (without head) – 7.08 inches/18cm
- Height (with head) – 8.66 inches/22cm
- Width – 1.25~0.98 inches/3.2~2.5cm
- Thickness – 1.25~0.98 inches/3.2~2.5cm
- Weight (without head) – 0.22 lbs/99g
- Weight (with head) – 0.23 lbs/105g
All are approximates
- Is the Oral-B kids an oscillating brush?
- Yes, the brush head oscillates and rotates.
- What brushing/cleaning modes are available?
- The brush offers 2 cleaning modes, known as Daily Clean and Sensitive.
- What brush head does this come with and what alternative ones can be used?
- The brush head included depends on the variant purchased. Primarily they come with a Kids Stages Power themed brush head.
- Adult brush heads fit and can be used with this handle. Oral-B primarily offers a total of 6 different brush heads, each of which can be purchased separately and used with this toothbrush. Those options are:
- 3D White
- Pro GumCare
- Sensitive Clean
- Precision Clean
- There are some more specialized brush heads available also.
- You can find out more about them and the standard Oral-B brush heads here.
- Does the kids toothbrush from Oral-B have a pressure sensor?
- No, it does not.
- Does this kids toothbrush have Bluetooth?
- No, it does not.
- Does it come with a travel case?
- No, a travel case is not included in the box.
- Does it come with a charger?
- Yes, a charging station is included.
- How long does the battery last?
- The battery lasts a minimum of 8 days on average, based on 2 cleans per day of 2 minutes in length.
- That is 32 minutes total running time.
- Our hands-on testing achieved 17 days, or 70 minutes of usage time.
- Can I use the kids toothbrush in the shower?
- The handle is water resistant, but is best not used when bathing.
- Does the Oral-B kids come with a warranty & how long is it?
- If purchased new from an approved retailer the brush will come with a 2 year warranty.
- Find out more about the Oral-B warranty.
Do you own or have you used the Oral-B Kids 3+.
Are there certain features that you really like or dislike?
Let us know what you think about this brush and let others who may well be considering purchasing one know your opinions before they do.