Well-built, stylish and more environmentally considerate than its rivals
The SURI toothbrush is slim, stylish, durable, well-designed and capable of achieving good cleaning results.
You get most of the dentist recommended features. The most notable downsides are the lack of a pressure sensor and a 1 year warranty, unless subscribed.
It certainly isn’t perfect, and SURI doesn’t claim to be. But, the brush is more considerate than most with repairability built-in.
SURI sets a new benchmark for electric toothbrushes that I am excited about.
- Environmentally considerate premium materials
- Slim, stylish & easy to keep clean
- Magnetic wall mount
- USB C powered travel charging case with UV-C cleaning
- Brush head recycling program
- No pressure sensor
- 1 year warranty
- USB charger makes it less convenient for some
Where to buy the SURI toothbrush
The SURI electric toothbrush is currently available direct from www.trysuri.com.
You can’t yet purchase from your local pharmacy or grocery store.
SURI has stronger environmental pledges than the competition
You get a good clean of the teeth from the Smart 1500 and you also gain the dentist recommended features at an affordable price.
However, Oral-B (and other leading manufacturers) don’t come anywhere near as close in terms of environmental pledges and actions.
In this respect, SURI is in a class and category of its own. There isn’t a brush that competes in terms of the environmental promises it is making.
If being environmentally considerate is your aim, then the best possible alternative is not to use an electric brush at all. Instead, you want to use our recommended best eco-friendly toothbrush.
|Oral-B Smart 1500 - Blue||15,734 Reviews||$79.99||View on Amazon|
It achieves good cleaning results despite some drawbacks
As an experienced electric toothbrush user I have been more than satisfied with the cleaning results offered by SURI. I’ve used considerably more expensive brushes that have performed worse in my plaque disclosing tests.
Clinically proven cleaning results
There is a reassurance that comes from the clinical testing that has been carried out for SURI. It has been demonstrated that this brush is 3 times more effective than a manual brush for whole mouth cleaning and as much as 5x more effective in hard-to-reach areas.
It is confirmation for those skeptical that the plant based bristles are no less effective than the more typical nylon option.
Although no clinical trials have yet compared it directly to other sonic brushes, these results are on par with the competition.
A low and high power setting for a gentle or intense clean
Everyday clean is the gentler of the 2 modes available, ideal for first time brush users or those with sensitive teeth and gums.
Personally I prefer Polish mode, which offers a stronger and more intense cleaning sensation. It suits more experienced users as it offers 33,000 vibrations per minute vs the 25,000 of Everyday clean.
The button used to switch between the two cleaning modes is a bit firm. It doesn’t provide the same satisfying click or feedback to the fingertip as some other models. You can switch modes at any time and the brush will default to the last used.
You distinguish between the 2 via the notification LED. It’s white for everyday clean or blue for polish mode. You can hear and feel the difference too.
It’s not as powerful as its rivals, but power isn’t everything
For experienced electric toothbrush users like myself, you might notice that SURI feels a little less powerful than models offered by the likes of Philips Sonicare.
Bristles on the brush head sweep back and forth just like other sonic toothbrushes, but the MicroSonic magnetic motor sealed inside SURI offers up to 33,000 vibrations per minute, which results in a slightly less intense brushing sensation.
More power doesn’t equal a better clean and I know many people like a softer and more gentle sensation as they brush.
I’ve not used a toothbrush that feels as powerful for its size. It certainly isn’t a deal breaker and should be of little concern if considering SURI.
If you’re new to electric brushes it will feel like it is giving a very thorough clean.
The timer and pacer help you brush for the right amount of time
There are far more fun things to be doing than brushing your teeth, but it’s very important all the tooth surfaces in the mouth get cleaned evenly.
The pacer is a dentist recommended feature that helps you achieve this. It’s configured to 30 second intervals and works as expected.
You will know if you haven’t achieved the advised brushing time because you will have to manually turn the brush off, rather than it powering off automatically.
Depending on how long you like to brush your teeth for, automatic power off can be helpful or annoying, but it’s not a big factor overall.
Do be aware, unlike most brushes that allow you to pause your brushing and resume where you left off (within 30 seconds) you can’t with SURI. The timer is reset as soon as you press the button.
If you know you brush too hard, this isn’t really the brush for you
If you are like many people who risk wearing their teeth and gums by brushing too hard, unfortunately, the SURI S1 toothbrush is not for you. There is no pressure sensor available to notify you of your mistake.
A pressure sensor is a feature we really wish was present in SURI and many other brushes.
No, it isn’t an absolute deal breaker, but I can’t recommend SURI for anyone who suspects they brush too hard.
The metal handle feels premium and well built — it’s easy to keep clean
This is one of the slimmest and best looking electric toothbrushes I have handled.
Made from aluminum with an inner steel core, it’s not a perfect cylinder. Wider than it is deep, there is some curvature but squared sides give a more industrial appearance and makes it feel solid and secure in hand.
With a very minimal look and just 1 function button, it is easy to keep clean. There are no textured surfaces for the toothpaste to get trapped in like the Oral-B Vitality Series, for example.
Residual toothpaste builds up most on the brush head and upon the metal plate at the attachment point. This is easily rectified as the water resistant (IPX7) handle can be rinsed under the tap, or used in the shower if that’s your preference.
Those with dexterity issues might find SURI a little more difficult to hold due to the smaller size and the lack of raised grips and textured surfaces.
The toothbrush lays quite happily on a countertop and isn’t prone to rolling. It will also stand upright, too.
You wouldn’t know the brush heads are plant-based and recyclable
SURI brush heads look and perform like any other regular sonic toothbrush head, but rather than being made from petroleum based plastic, they are made from plant-based material.
Whilst the corn starch PLA used for the head is still plastic, it is industrially compostable. The castor oil used for the bristles is a bio-based plastic. It is made from a renewable rather than a finite resource and is subsequently better for the planet.
The 14 clusters of bristles have a W profile to them. SURI calls this 3DWave. This means longer bristles at the top, middle and bottom of the head. These help cup the teeth, reach the interdental spaces and give a good overall clean.
The bristles are of a soft/medium firmness and from what I can tell they have been rounded at the tip to provide a soft brushing experience. I have found them very pleasant to use.
The tongue is a common cause of bad breath, so it is well worth making use of the tongue scraper on the back of the head.
Just like a regular toothbrush, the head should be replaced every 3 months. Unfortunately, there are no fading bristles or alert systems built into SURI to remind you. It will be up to you to remember when to replace them.
Where most toothbrush heads get thrown into your regular rubbish bin, SURI has a recycling program available. Included is a prepaid biodegradable bag that can be used to return the heads. Theoretically, the cornstarch PLA can be industrially composted. However, there is a lack of facilities that can offer this at the moment, so SURI will send used brush heads to a specialist recycling partner.
Recycling schemes are being introduced by other brands, with some accepting more waste streams, such as floss and interdental brushes. At the time of review, they are not as effortless as SURI.
It must be said that whilst SURI’s brush heads and return system are an improvement compared to the competition, there is still a long way to go to reduce their overall impact.
The optional travel case is one of the best I have used
The S1 toothbrush is available in 4 different color options, your choices are:
- Midnight black
- Winter fern (soft green color)
- Sea mist (white/grey color)
- Morning waves (blue/grey color)
Technically, they are all the same.
You can purchase the brush only, or you can buy it with an optional UV travel case. Morning waves is the exception, this is sold with a UV case only.
There is approximately a $20 premium for the case, but in my opinion, this is worth paying for as it is one of the best travel cases available for an electric toothbrush today. If you travel at all you will welcome the protection and features this offers.
The case holds the handle and 1 brush head and has vents that allow the brush to dry. It closes securely using magnets and isn’t any bigger than it needs to be. Most impressively, you can recharge the toothbrush and sanitize your brush head simultaneously, whilst inside.
SURI claims that the UV-C light kills 99.9% of bacteria in 1 minute. Our best sanitizer article highlights how this might not be enough time to be effective, but you can run multiple cycles if this is a big concern.
Excluding the UV element altogether would have minimized the carbon footprint further. As it stands the power cable must be connected. Perhaps including a small battery to power this, would have been useful. It’s not a sustainable approach but far more convenient given you are likely to want to run the cycle more frequently than you need to charge the handle.
It should be noted that the case isn’t made from bio-plastic and irrespective of handle color you get the same 2 tone case.
You won’t pay a big premium for doing the right thing
Too often doing the right thing costs a lot more and isn’t financially viable for the majority of us, but thankfully that isn’t the case with SURI.
Yes, it is marginally more expensive, but the ownership costs are pretty comparable to major brands.
The brush only retails for ~$92 with the UV case option adding ~$24.
Discounts on retail prices are quite common, averaging around 15%.
This reduces the price to $78 and $99 respectively.
With replacement heads costing a little over $6 each, the total ownership cost of SURI is $147 or $168 for the UV case variant.
Our top recommended Philips Sonicare brush, the 4100 Series, costs about $150.
For $20 you can get a brush notably more environmentally considerate, and a UV charging travel case. For me, this is a no-brainer (as long as you don’t need a pressure sensor).
Oral-B’s Smart 1500 is $30-50 cheaper and one of the best value electric toothbrushes today. But, it’s bulkier, less stylish, has no travel case, no eco credentials and is noisy too.
Hear what others say as you brush: SURI is quiet in use
SURI is refreshingly quiet when compared to many other brushes. There are quieter models from other brands, but to put this into context, I can hear my wife talking to me when using SURI, something that can’t be said when using Oral-B.
The magnetic wall mount is fantastically simple
I was pleasantly surprised by how well the SURI magnetic wall mount works. It’s easy to implement and reduces clutter in the bathroom.
The mount adheres to a flat surface. The magnetic tension is just enough that the brush is securely held in place, but it isn’t at all difficult to remove when required.
I’m sure I’m not alone in having a toothbrush holder with multiple brushes all coming into contact with each other or having experienced the domino effect of knocking a toothbrush over. This isn’t a problem if you adopt SURI’s approach.
The battery is excellent – 40 days on a full charge
Given that the average battery life of an electric toothbrush is around 3-4 weeks, SURI is spot on, if not slightly better than average, particularly considering the slimmer profile of the handle.
40 days is the claimed life of the rechargeable 800mAh Lithium-Ion battery, but I achieved 42 days.
The magnetic USB charging stand can be used in a bathroom
When the battery is low 3 beeps will be emitted from the brush alongside a flashing red light.
Place it upright on the provided magnetic charging stand and replenish the battery in about 3-4 hours.
Compact at 6 x 3 x 1.5cm, the mottled grey stand has a white USB cable hardwired into it to connect to a USB port. No USB power adapter is supplied, but can be purchased separately.
When charging, a blue LED will flash on the handle. Once fully charged it turns a solid white.
Recharge via the travel case when on the go
SURI can be charged inside the case, provided it is connected to a power outlet.
A detachable USB type A male to USB type c male cable is provided. Unfortunately, this cable has to be carried separately.
There is no LED on the outside of the case to confirm it is charging, so you will need to have the case open to see the LED on the handle.
It’s a bit picky on what cables/power sources will power it. The user manual recommends a 5v USB 2.0 or 3.0 wall charger.
The battery is replaceable, but not by the user
SURI is one of, if not the only company to design their brush to be easily repairable.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean a DIY battery replacement. It will be a chargeable service available from their US based service centre. Most repairs should cost in the region of $15-30. We were quoted $25 for a new battery.
You shouldn’t expect a shorter battery life as a consequence, SURI just wants to ensure you can get the maximum life from the handle compared to their counterparts which are by design usually rendered defunct when a battery fails.
You don’t need 100 days to decide if you like it or not
Known as ‘The SURI Promise’ you can return the brush for a full refund within the first 100 days should you not be satisfied.
I really don’t believe you will need this long to decide. You’ll probably know within the first few days, maybe a couple of weeks at worst if this brush is for you.
There are few things to dislike about it and I’ve tested hundreds of brushes.
1 year warranty is less generous than the competition
The supplied 1 year warranty falls below the 2 years that are now pretty standard from the major manufacturers.
For a company that has designed a brush to be more environmentally considerate, I expected better, perhaps setting a new higher standard of 3+ years.
All being well it won’t fail, but a small benefit is if it does, it can be repaired affordably.
In the UK SURI offers a lifetime warranty, when you subscribe to replacement brush heads. All being well this will be implemented stateside soon.
SURI is designed to be repaired affordably
Unlike established multinational competitors we don’t have a track record of reliability when it comes to SURI. Early signs are positive with no obvious concerns surrounding the durability of the brush.
Should the worst happen and it fails inside or outside of warranty, in most instances it will be possible to get it repaired without significant financial impact.
Where some companies don’t offer repair outside of the warranty or deem it economically unviable, SURI’s approach is to minimize the impact on global resources.
Removing a screw on the base of the brush gains access to the internals, but repairs can only be completed by SURI’s appointed service center. Only time will tell how well this system works, but early indications are positive.
A closer look at SURI’s environmental pledges
SURI refer to their brush as the Sustainable Sonic Toothbrush. Sustainable is a very general term, often overused and without explaining exactly what is meant. Their brush is arguably more sustainable than other electric toothbrushes, but that does not necessarily mean the brush itself is sustainable.
An electric toothbrush has 11 times more impact on the environment than a manual toothbrush. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t use one. You need to balance effective cleaning and disease prevention against the environmental impact.
Only a lifecycle assessment will really be able to rank SURIs impact in comparison to other brushes, but no such data is available yet.
SURI is the only electric toothbrush company to be B Corp certified. By no means is this the pinnacle to rank a company by, but it demonstrates a high standard of transparency and accountability.
That being said, their products are made in and shipped from China. It would be preferable if they were made elsewhere, but the reality is China is one of the most well-equipped countries to produce these products. It will take time before SURI can establish its own manufacturing in other, arguably better places.
SURI works to be climate neutral by offsetting 100% of their brush emissions, including manufacture and transportation. It would be ideal if they didn’t have to use this approach, but the reality is that even with recyclable packaging, the use of plant based plastics and a brush head recycling scheme, an electric toothbrush is never going to be that low in its carbon footprint and offsetting is the best alternative at this time.
SURI will be the first to acknowledge they are not perfect, but they are pushing boundaries that we haven’t seen from other oral care companies. They make it clear how their product is different and have processes to make their offering more environmentally considerate than competitors.
Conclusion: A worthy competitor to established brands
Of all the toothbrushes I use, few remain as my daily brush, but SURI has.
The stylish aluminum handle, 2 minute timer, great cleaning performance, magnetic mount and fantastic travel case are reasons why I am still using it, more than a year on from purchase.
The lack of a pressure sensor is a real shame, though.
Using an electric toothbrush undoubtedly has a greater impact on the planet than using a manual one. Whether you opt for electric over manual is a personal choice and depends on the state of your oral health.
SURI have produced a brush that competes technically and financially with the best options available today. They are challenging the status quo by making environmental pledges that those with larger budgets should already be pushing beyond. Hopefully, they can continue to deliver on these and set a new standard for others to follow.
- Height (without head) – 19.5cm / 7.68 inches
- Height (with head) – 22cm / 8.66 inches
- Width – 2cm / 0.79 inches
- Thickness – 1.6cm / 0.63 inches
- Weight (without head) – 78g / 2.75 oz
- Weight (with head) – 84g / 2.96 oz
- Length – 24.2cm / 3.02 inches
- Width – 3.2cm / 1.26 inches
- Depth – 3.2cm / 1.26 inches
- Weight (without brush) – 103g / 3.63 oz
- Weight (with brush) – 187g / 6.59 oz
Retail box (includes brush & all accessories)
- Weight – 460g / 16.23oz
All are approximates
What brush head does SURI come with and what alternative ones can be used?
The SURI toothbrush comes with 1 plant based brush head included in the box.
Additional or replacement heads can be purchased in packs of 3.
Heads are provided in the same colours as the brush handle, so that they match.
There is just 1 style of brush head, no different bristle configurations or cuts exist.
Only SURI branded heads fit and work with the SURI handle.
Does SURI have a pressure sensor?
No, it does not.
Does SURI have Bluetooth?
No, it does no
Can I use the SURI sonic toothbrush in the shower?
Yes. SURI is IPX7 rated and is in their words, waterproof so if you choose you can use it in the shower. Avoid submerging it in water.
Does SURI come with a warranty & how long is it?
If purchased new from an approved retailer the brush will come with a 1 year/360 day warranty.
You do also get a 100 day smile guarantee, also known as the SURI promise.