Reader supported. We may earn a commission on recommendations.

Published: November 23, 2022

Oral-B Coloured Rings – what are they for?

Author: Jon Love (9 Comments)
Quick Summary
  • The coloured rings help you to tell brush heads apart. They are useful when sharing a toothbrush handle between people
  • Some Oral-B brushes do not have them.
Oral-B coloured rings next to a brush head

The coloured ring at the bottom of an Oral-B brush head is put in place to help distinguish multiple brush heads from one another.

For example, if you had a family with a mum, dad, son and daughter, each may have their own brush head that can be used on their Oral-B electric toothbrush.

The colour of the ring is what can be used to identify whose brush head is whose.  Mum may have a red coloured ring, whilst Dad has a blue ring, the son green and the daughter pink.

The coloured ring serves no purpose other than that.


Why they are needed?

It may not apply to you but taking the above scenario, if every member of that family uses the same style of brush head, how would you ever tell the difference?

You should always use your own toothbrush/brush head and not share one as doing so can pass potentially dangerous bacteria between mouths.

When you have 4 brush heads all lined up next to each other, the only way to tell the difference is by the coloured ring.


I have lost the coloured ring, does it matter?

The coloured ring serves no purpose other than to tell brush heads apart, so if you are not in a scenario as described above whereby there are multiples brush heads in close proximity, then do not worry.

Without the ring, the brush will perform no differently.

If you've lost the coloured ring and you do need a way to distinguish it from other heads, you could find another way to differentiate it, for example with a small sticker.

Can I swap coloured rings from other brush heads?

Whilst the brush head itself should be changed every three months, the coloured ring has no predetermined lifespan.

When it comes to disposing of your brush head, if you want to keep the coloured ring you can use your fingernail to pull the ring off and attach it to a new Oral-B brush head.


How can I buy more coloured rings?

Oral-B does not sell the coloured rings on their own.  There are some third party sellers on Amazon and eBay who may sell the rings, but due to their low value and low demand, they are not readily available.  You will not find them at your local supermarket.

Do remember any new brush head purchase will come with a coloured ring.

Can I choose the colour ring on the brush head?

Yes and no.  When you buy a new brush head you cannot request or determine the exact colour of the ring(s) included in the pack.

If buying in person you may well be able to see these through the packaging, but not if you are buying online.


You may choose to take a coloured ring from an old brush head or your preferred colour from the pack of heads and swap it each time you change the head.

Why do other electric toothbrushes not have this?

Generally speaking coloured rings only come with Oral-B brushes.  Other brands may have their own way of differentiating brush heads or work on the basis that in reality, whilst it makes perfect sense to share a toothbrush handle, even in a family environment users often have one electric toothbrush each, thus the need for the coloured ring is redundant.


The Oral-B iO does not have coloured rings

The coloured rings do not fit and are not compatible with the Oral-B iO brush heads (Ultimate Clean and Gentle Care).

The iO Series, which we cover in detail in our Oral-B iO comparison, has a new design of brush head, which does not use coloured rings.

However, there is still a way of telling the difference between the iO brush heads.

Rather than coloured rings, each brush head has printed on it 1 of 12 different icons.

The icon is printed on the front of the long shaft of the brush head, at the bottom, just above the bottom edge of the head.

Each brush head included in refill packs has a different icon on it.

The icons essentially do the same job as the coloured rings.

To learn more about the various heads, see our post on the best Oral-B brush heads.

Oral-B iO Brush Head Icon

LED Smart Ring - A different type of coloured ring

A different type of coloured ring found on some Oral-B toothbrushes is the LED Smart Ring.

Unlike the rings that fit at the bottom of the brush head, this smart ring is quite different.

The ring is built into the brush at the time of manufacture and comes on some of the more premium Bluetooth enabled Oral-B electric toothbrush models.

When connected to a smartphone, via the Oral-B application, the smart ring can be changed to 1 of 12 different colour options.

The brush then illuminates the ring with the chosen colour whilst the toothbrush is turned on.

The smart ring is designed for adding a personal touch and is not aimed at differentiating one toothbrush or brush head from another.

Having said this, the smart ring does double up as the visible pressure sensor, lighting up red when too much pressure is applied.  It will on some models also flash at 30 second and 2 minute intervals as part of the built-in timer mechanism.

Author: Jon Love

Related Topics

Leave a comment

I accept the Privacy Policy

July 8, 2022

I have the Orsl b in. Why does the ring change colors while brushing

Jon Love - Chief tester
July 8, 2022

Hi Joy. If the colour of the ring is changing during use, this likely means you have an iO model. This is the pressure sensor. It normally has a white light, that turns green when you are applying the correct pressure and red when you are applying too much.

Ellen Cruise
May 23, 2019

Great to know what the ring represents. Have just bought a Pro 600 and the coloured ring disappeared down the drain on the second use. Would love to replace but can't with buying further brush heads. No fair!!

Jon Love - Chief tester
May 24, 2019

Hi Ellen. You can get spare rings on ebay etc, but probably not worth it. Just wait until replacing the brush head in 3 months time.

Linda Redman
July 22, 2018

Thanks so much for that. I am a newbie to electric toothbrushes and have had a job finding replacements thinking I need a specific colour. Lol. Now I can use all 4 recently bought from boots and not just the yellow ringed one.

July 10, 2018

Good little article, short, informative and straight to the point 👍

June 26, 2018

Great article thanks

Taniya Brown
February 18, 2017

Thanks this tooth brush is life to me?????

Jon Love - Chief tester
February 19, 2017

What model brush are you using Taniya?

Never neglect your teeth again. Sign up to our newsletter today for honest advice and transparent reviews