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Published: May 21, 2024

Instafloss – initial thoughts and reaction

Author: Jon Love (17 Comments)
Instafloss - initial thoughts and reaction 1
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In spring 2024 we received the unit we paid for as part of Instafloss crowdfunding campaign back in June 2020.

Giving some allowance for the challenges that come with designing and producing an innovative product, what we received was of an unsatisfactory standard.

We have provided extensive feedback to Instafloss, which has been acknowledged and we are advised that many of our points are being addressed to improve the product.

At this time we are actively choosing not to review the product. We may look to do so when Instafloss are shipping new and updated units that are more ready for consumers and everyday use. As and when this will be, we do not currently know.

Instafloss is a slightly different take on the very popular water flosser product, which I have been covering for some time here at Electric Teeth.

It has finally begun shipping in Q4 of 2023 — we have one on order and will update this page until a full hands-on review is available. You can order here from Indiegogo

In the sections below I give my initial thoughts and reactions based on the previous testing of similar products and explain in detail what Willo is and how it works.  

Jon's thoughts

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Jon Love

Around 32% of Americans never floss.  

A somewhat alarming statistic, it’s not all that surprising, given how awkward, painful and time consuming it can be.

With plenty of practice, flossing does become easier and your mouth will be healthier.  Yet, many of us still don’t do it or do it regularly enough and when we do, we use the wrong technique.

Instafloss is a possible solution that addresses both convenience and speed and appears to be less technique sensitive.

The theory is you will be able to floss all your teeth in just 10 seconds, and do so thoroughly.  

This is thanks to 7 water jets that push pressurized water to the gum line and around the teeth. The power of the water cleans away plaque and debris that can lead to dental health problems such as gum disease.

I am certainly in favor of any product that makes managing oral health easier and entices more to maintain a good routine.  

Waterpik have been making water flossers for years and I can clearly see how Instafloss's approach improves on an already tried and tested product.  Cleaning both arches of the teeth at the same time, rather than tooth by tooth.

Some of the stats in the marketing of this product whilst correct, actually come from studies on Waterpik products and could be misunderstood as being specific to Instafloss.  The approach used here is slightly different, so the clinical results could be too. Potentially significantly better!

It is not a ‘cheap’ tool.  Basic dental floss is more cost effective. You are also tethered to a power socket with this. But, it is a product I can see being very appealing for many because of the benefits it brings.

Timeline of updates

  • Q1 2024 - We receive our unit.
  • December 2023 - Instafloss begins shipping
  • 28th Spetember 2023 - Initial shipments have begun. Some reliability issues have arisen impacting further shipments. We have agreed to accept a unit from one of the next batches to be shipped. We await confirmation of dispatch.
  • 3rd June 2023 - Issues in production - Delayed shipping until some point in July.
  • 22nd February 2023 - Scratched components - Delayed shipping until the end of Q2 2023.
  • 13th December - Further issues with components & manufacturing. Delayed until Q1 2023.
  • 9th May 2021 - Problems with molds used in production. These have to be adapted & re-made. Delay of 6 months. Now expected November 2022.
  • 30th September 2021 - Further delays with parts and manufacturing. Earliest manufacturing will begin is end of Q1 2022. Likely to then be shipping during Q2 2022.
  • 26th April 2021 -
    • Production will be completed in Q3, 2021 for orders placed before March 26th 2021. This includes us.
    • Later orders expected to ship in Q4 2021.
    • A third production run due in Q2 2022 with continual stocks due after this.
  • 26th March 2021 - Computer chip shortages delaying the shipping of the first batch until Q3 2021. A further batch expected in Q4 2021 with all orders not expected to be fulfilled until Q2 2022.
  • 23rd October 2020 - Notification that shipment delayed until July 2021.
  • 27th September 2020 - Notification shipment date will be delayed. ETA to be confirmed, likely early 2021
  • August 4th 2020 - Reaches $1 million in funding
  • July 9th 2020 - Campaign moves to Indiegogo
  • July 9th 2020 - Campaign ends with 6,595 backers $812,272 raised
  • June 9th 2020 - Reaches funding goal within 6 minutes!
  • June 9th 2020 - Project launches with a goal of $20,000

Instafloss explained

Countertop water flossers have been around for many years.  They are dominated primarily by one brand, Waterpik.

Instafloss is a slight rethink on the way that a traditional countertop water flosser works.

Instafloss water flosser unit

Rather than the nozzle sending just one jet of pressurised water, with Instafloss, there are 14 jets continually pushing water out.

This is 7 jets per arch of teeth.  The mouthpiece has 2 sides, so you are cleaning both the top and bottom teeth in your mouth at the same time.

Instafloss Cleaning Action

3 jets focus on the back of the teeth, whilst 4 jets are aimed at the front of the teeth.  

Held at a perfect 90 degree angle to the gumline, the water dislodges and cleans away bacteria and plaque that sits on and under the gumline as well as in between the teeth.

Instafloss - initial thoughts and reaction 2

It is said to give a 360 degree clean of the teeth and does so with more ease and convenience than regular string floss.

In fact, it reaches areas of the gumline that string floss simply can’t.

Instafloss vs String Floss

The pressure of the water can be controlled by a rotating dial on the unit.  It is not clear how many pressure settings there will be.  Waterpik typically offer 10 settings ranging from 10-100PSI.

It is not clear to me whether the water flow is switched on and off via the handle or the main unit, but it looks like it will be controlled via the main unit itself.

The base unit is where all the electronics are located, sealed inside.  A water tank or reservoir sits on the top (capacity unknown) and a pump inside pushes this out through the 2 foot hose and through the mouthpiece attached to the handle.

It has a 5” diameter and is 10” tall.  This is a similar size to most other water flossers.  It comes in white, but colored sleeves in grey, mint, and black can be purchased to personalise your unit.

Instafloss Water Flosser Unit Black

The power supply is dual voltage, and it should come supplied with the appropriate plug/adapter for your country.

Mouthpieces are interchangeable, so multiple users can share 1 Instafloss unit.  

The recommendation is that each user replaces their mouthpiece every 3 months.  This seems quite frequent, given the relatively short space of time you will be using it for each day.

There is only 1 size of mouthpiece, which is said to be suitable for 98% of people. Made from silicone so it should be soft on the teeth and gums should it come into contact with them.

If you have seen a mouthpiece toothbrush, this is essentially a mouthpiece flosser of sorts!

The design is such that you are said to be able to floss your teeth in just 10 seconds, 12x times quicker than regular methods.

The company claims it is 2x more effective than manual flossing as well as being more comfortable and I would be inclined to agree based on what I have seen and know.

Water flossing has been proven in clinical studies to be effective.

Instafloss quotes some of the results in their marketing materials.  Whilst they don’t specifically state they apply to their product, it could be interpreted as such. 

They state:

Compared to string, water flossing is:

  • 151% as effective at reducing gingivitis (Barnes CM, et al)
  • 129% as effective at removing plaque (Goyal CR, et al)
  • 200% as effective at reducing bleeding (Rosema NAM et al)

The study by Goyal (available here) claims a 29%, not a 129% improvement.  This was actually carried out using a Waterpik water flosser.

The reduction of bleeding shown in the study by Rosema (available here) was also conducted using a Waterpik product.

I am a little concerned about how the claims have been displayed because at least 2 of these are based on a product, similar, but different to Instafloss.  It is fair to some extent to assume similar results, but it is not fact.

I suspect their approach could actually deliver better results, but without proper testing, we won’t know. 

Instafloss Logo

I think what Instafloss will do considerably better is getting around the molars at the back of the mouth which traditionally are the hardest to clean around.

There are a team of engineers and dental professionals creating this device and they are all headed up by Eli Packouz.

$179 will be the retail price for this unit, but if you head over to Indigegogo you can get a discount for pre-ordering and backing the project early.

Instafloss looks to be an exciting new take on water flossing.  It is not really revolutionary, but it is an enhancement on an approach we already have.  Sometimes, the simplest adaptations are the best and I am inclined to suggest this could be one such example.

And to close out, here is Instafloss’s own promotional video.

Author: Jon Love

Leave a comment

A
Amelia
July 8, 2024

I've used the very earliest version of the Instafloss that they gave to early backers for feedback and I've also used the updated version for about two months. (I understand they're still making changes, but I gave a lot of good feedback to the old version, so they were willing to let me try the most updated version.)

The new version is VASTLY improved. The old version didn't really feel like water flossing, but the new version feels as good as my Aquarius Professional Waterpik. I actually enjoy the experience a lot more.

But the most important thing is that I got my perio charts done at the hygienist and my pockets have all improved and I have far fewer bleeding points after using the updated Instafloss for about 2 months, which is amazing.

So my bottom line: Instafloss is going to be a game changer for a lot of people and while the newer version is already great, I can't wait to see what they come out with when they finally release the product. I gave them my feedback and it's great to see them communicative and responding to it. I think the early backers didn't realize that they had agreed to test an early version.

S
Shane
April 30, 2024

After using this product as a primary flossing tool for the past 6 months, I CANNOT recommend it.

I was an early adopter of this product. I purchased it on pre-order in 2020, during the early development phase. After several production delays, it was shipped to me roughly 6 months ago and I have used it since. This time line coincided nicely with my last professional teeth cleaning. So this review is, in essence, a full blind split test of flossing traditionally vs. Instafloss. And I was the lab mouse.

I was initially hopeful about the tech, to decrease the amount of time spent flossing daily. Upon assessment by my dental hygienist of my daily dental routine after the professional cleaning, she said my gums bled as if I had not flossed at all in the past 6 months. She said that it is clearly not effectively cleaning the bacteria out of the gum line. She did mention that the rest of my routine seemed to be effective, as I had an average amount of plaque build up, and that it was clear to her that I was brushing effectively. NOTE: She did NOT attribute the average plaque build up to the use of Instafloss but to an effective daily brushing routine.

I would post this review directly on the Instafloss website, but that is unfortunately not possible at the time of this review. I suspect it will never be a feature.

If you are looking for an expensive ($200), totally ineffective supplementary flossing tool this is the product for you. I do advise any potential buyer, based on my personal research test of the past 6 months, NOT to purchase this product.

Any future potential buyer should keep using traditional flossing methods daily to keep their gum line healthy and hygienic. I am personally disappointed that this tool did NOT work as a dental hygienic tool. Like many people, I am not a fan of traditional flossing because of the time it takes daily to do it correctly and clean effectively. That said, it is much better to invest your personal time on flossing your teeth traditionally, as the Instafloss has no value in replacing the act of flossing.

Other cons, it uses an excessive amount of water per use. As a native Californian we are very conscious of water usage. And although I'm not thrilled about generating micro-plastics via the use of traditional dental floss, the amount of water Instafloss uses is unreasonable. Especially considering that it does NOT work, and should NOT replace a traditional daily flossing routine.

I would like to thank the reader of this review for taking the time to consider these points when choosing to save your money on the purchase of Instafloss. I advise you to put all that hard earned money somewhere special, you deserve it. The team at Instafloss does not, and should be ashamed of such an underdeveloped, wasteful product, that does not hold up to any sort of testing in the professional field.

JL
Jon Love - Chief tester
May 2, 2024

H Shane.
Thank you for sharing your expereince. You have gone into great detail and the timing of the testing alongisde your teeth cleaning was superb.

D
Daniel
April 18, 2024

Here to chime in my 2 cents. I received my unit in late December 2023. Unfortunately I did not open the box until just this week in April 2024. I was aware of the valve issue as the communicated that before I received my unit. However, to my surprise, this flosser is terrible. Its loud, messy, and poorly built.
I'm looking forward to hear your thoughts when you receive your unit.

G
Gigi
April 5, 2024

I so wanted to love this but it’s a disaster. Spills water everywhere I have to clean up the entire counter every time I use it. The valve leaks which means every time you remove the container to fill and empty (which they say you have to do to prevent the valve leakage) you end up with a puddle of water on your counter. They won’t take it back probably because everyone wants to return theirs. Such a disappointment.

JL
Jon Love - Chief tester
April 8, 2024

Thanks for your feedback GiGi. A new valve is under development as far as we are aware which will resolve this siutation and they are sending it out free to customers soon.
Have they explicitally told you they won't take the unit back?

G
Gigi
April 9, 2024

That is correct. I have two units purchased through the Indiegogo campaign. One is unused and still in the shipment box, unopened, and the other is the one I have trying so hard to get to love. They will not take them back because it has been more than 60 days. After waiting almost 3 years with constant delays it’s disappointing that they are sticklers about time now. I will admit it’s my fault that I didn’t sent the unused unit in sooner, but even when they do accept a return they make you pay for shipping, and I didn’t have time to go seek out the best shipping option for something that is big/heavy enough that it’s not likely to be a minor cost. Maybe valve 2.0 will help, but in the meantime it’s a useless machine unless you want to use it to spray down your bathroom counter.

BG
Bob Gaul
March 13, 2024

Have you tried calling their phone number posted on their website? You get a fast busy. I ordered it, received it, tried it, hated it, and have tried contacting the company ever since. They do not answer emails when asking for a refund (which by the way states on their site you have 30 days to return). So, phones don't work, emails go unresponded to and zero customer service. I'm curious to know if you will reply to this and what you will do if you follow my comments.

JL
Jon Love - Chief tester
March 14, 2024

Hi Bob.
I have not tried calling the number on their website, as I have had no reason to. It is dissapointing to read your experience and I have no explanation as to why this might be. But I have no insight into the company to why you have been treated this way.
I have within the last few days received my unit that I paid for several years ago via the crowdfunding campaign. I have yet to actually test it to see what it is like.
I have exchanged a few emails with them. If you want to email us (via our contact us page) with more details about your problem/order, I am happy to pass your details on in the hope that they reach out.

BG
Bob Gaul
March 14, 2024

In fairness I wanted to let you know that they have finally reached out to me. Of course they are saying I need to return the product within the 30 day period and they have taken over 2 weeks to reply to me even though I contacted them immediately upon trying the product. The fact that their phones do not work should be a HUGE red flag to anyone dealing with this company.

SS
Sadhish Siva
January 4, 2024

I received the instafloss (finally after 2+ years of waitin) and have been highly disapopinted with it. First off it looks nothing like the photo in this article. It is absolutely massive than the waterpik that most people are used to (I would easily say 2x the size in height). The cord attaching the flosser to the main unit is also awful, it is super thick and does not bend well. The way they want you to floss is also very awkward with a tremendous amount of water coming out at once (be prepared to have a counter that is messy b/c of this). Plus water comes out of the flossing head even when not turned on if there is water in the tank that is higher level than where you position the floss head.

G
Gigi
April 5, 2024

This is right.

JL
Jon Love - Chief tester
January 5, 2024

Thanks for sharing your feedback Sahish. I shall bear this in mind when I get mine to test very soon. It is ultimately dissapointing to read that it hasn't deivered in the way you expected.
I beleive the water leak issue is a known fault and they are working on new valve to solve this.

D
Dab
December 7, 2021

Well markted but not replacing floss

C
Citogal
December 23, 2020

I am intrigued by this flosser, but moving it to Indiegogo reduces my confidence it will be delivered.

S
Stephen
October 27, 2020

A slight nitpick, saying Product A is 129% as effective as Product B is the exact same thing as saying Product A is 29% more effective. The difference lies with "AS effective" vs "MORE effective". It's just a way of wording it to entice people and catch their attention since people tend to respond more to bigger numbers.

I'm highly interested in this device, been seeing ads for their Indigogo campaign for a few months now and it may entice me to pull the trigger and try out a water flosser. My concern was that it wouldn't be as effective as traditional flossing, but if it's not only as good but BETTER, then I'm sold. Looking forward to your review!

JL
Jon Love - Chief tester
October 27, 2020

Hi Stephen.

Thanks for the comment. It is definitely all designed to catch the attention.

I would encourage you to stick with regular flossing for now until we have received and tested the unit. As it happens, I have just received notification that it is now not due to ship until July 2021, so about 9 months to wait.

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