20 years ago, clear aligners became the superhero of modern orthodontics. They rescued adults everywhere from the unsightly wires & brackets of traditional braces, replacing them with smooth, clear plastic aligners.
The most well-known option is Invisalign, but they don’t have a monopoly on the market. One of their earliest competitors was ClearCorrect, and in recent years, at-home treatments have become equally attractive options.
At-home clear aligner brands like Candid offer a faster and more affordable treatment alternative for busy adults on a budget.
But how do these competitors—ClearCorrect and Candid—compare? That’s the question we’re here to answer.
In this comparison review, we’ll put Candid and ClearCorrect side by side to see how they stack up in terms of cost, quality, customer experience, and more. By the time we’re finished, you’ll have a much clearer image of which company better lines up with your needs!
Candid wins! We think Candid treatment could be a great match for people seeking sophisticated treatment oversight without losing any convenience.
That said, Candid is more expensive than their at-home clear aligner competitors. If you’re interested in remote orthodontic care, be sure to compare all the top-rated providers before making a decision.
4 Things They Have in Common
ClearCorrect and Candid are two very different companies, but they do have similar products. It comes as no surprise, then, that they have a few things in common:
1) Discreet: Both ClearCorrect and Candid are far less noticeable than braces. Trade wires and brackets for clear aligners and that’s bound to happen. Some people find that they ‘lisp’ a little bit when they first start wearing the aligners, but most people adjust pretty quickly. Most users find that other people rarely (if ever) spot their aligners.
2) Safe: We’re talking about the future of your smile here, so safety is crucial. But rest assured, both ClearCorrect and Candid are safe ways to straighten your teeth. Both companies use similar technologies and although ClearCorrect has a few add-ons that Candid doesn’t, the basic principle of both is the same. Both companies use safe, BPA-free plastic in their aligners and dental professionals to design your treatment.
3) Convenient: If you ever talk to a friend who had braces back in the day, you’ll probably hear horror stories about avoiding popcorn or gum, the pains of dislodging food from the wires, and other hassles. Clear aligners take these hassles down several notches. You’ll have to remove your aligners every time you eat or drink (excluding water), but you’ll get to eat all of your favorite foods. And cleaning your teeth is just as simple as ever, too. Just pop out your aligners to brush and floss, then reinsert them.
4) Insurance Coverage: Both ClearCorrect and Candid may be covered by your insurance. If your plan includes orthodontic benefits, there’s a good chance you can receive partial coverage. Some general dental policies may cover your treatment, too. However, insurance providers are more likely to cover in-office treatments like ClearCorrect than at-home ones like Candid.
5 Ways They Differ
This wouldn’t be a comparison review if these two companies didn’t have a few differences, now, would it? Here are a few key differences between ClearCorrect and Candid:
1) Who can get treatment: One of the biggest differences between ClearCorrect and Candid is who can receive treatment. Candid can treat only mild to moderate cases of crowding and spacing. More extensive cases—like those caused by an overbite, underbite, or misshapen jaw—need to be monitored in-person by an orthodontist. ClearCorrect, however, can handle the full gamut of cases, from mild to severe.
2) Cost: There is no one-size-fits-all price tag for ClearCorrect. That’s because your price depends on your orthodontist’s personal fees and the severity of your case. The more severe your case, the more it will cost. They also have Limited 6 and Limited 12 options for mild cosmetic cases that are often significantly cheaper. On average, most people will spend between $2,500 and $5,000. The dentist administering your Candid treatment determines your price. You will pay at least $3,500, but it can also cost more than that depending on your dentist’s fees and your location.
3) Treatment Length: ClearCorrect’s average treatment times range between 12 to 18 months, although Flex may take as little as a few months. Candid’s treatment lengths are much shorter, wrapping up between 6-9 months. However, their CandidMonitoring service might allow you to progress through your aligners quicker, potentially shortening the overall timeline.
4) One-on-one care: With ClearCorrect, you’ll have direct, in-person care from your orthodontist each time you visit the office. Typically the biggest disadvantage of at-home aligner companies is that you don’t actually meet in-person with a doctor. Candid is the exception to this rule. Candid’s treatment is administered by a Candid partnered dentist, and overseen remotely via the CandidMonitoring program. If any issues occur during your treatment, you can return to your local dentist for course correction. It’s not likely, but it’s nice to know you have a local option if the need arises.
5) Financing: Both Candid and ClearCorrect offer financing. ClearCorrect partners with beWell, which can require a credit check; alternatively, you might be able to get a customized plan directly from your dental provider. With Candid, the financing options will vary from office to office, so be sure to ask about your options during your initial consultation.
The Rundown: How ClearCorrect and Candid Stack Up
Invisalign was the first clear aligner option, but ClearCorrect followed closely on their heels. In 2006, founder Dr. William Pumphrey realized that over 400 patients needed clear aligners, but there wasn’t a good manufacturer in line to fill that need. So Dr. Pumphrey made a critical decision: he was going to produce his own. The rest is pretty much history. Now ClearCorrect is the second-largest clear aligner producer in the industry.
What really stands out about ClearCorrect’s treatment is the wide variety of conditions they can correct. That’s largely due to the attachments and extra plastics that your dentist or orthodontist can use. These ‘extras’ are attached to your teeth and work in conjunction with your clear aligners to create powerful, nuanced movements. Your dentist or orthodontist can also add any spacers, elastics, or other attachments you may need. That flexibility and technology allow ClearCorrect to treat more extreme cases.
Compared to ClearCorrect, Candid is much, much newer. But “newer” doesn’t mean they’re inexperienced! Though Candid got its start as a premium, fully remote clear aligner service, they’ve recently pivoted to “CandidPro,” a hybrid at-home/in-office treatment option. Your treatment is administered by a local dentist in the Candid network, and overseen with the CandidMonitoring system.
Using your phone and a special imaging device, you’ll take photos of your teeth every 10-14 days for the Candid team and/or your dentist to review. This helps keep your treatment on track and can even reduce your overall treatment length.
|Customers served||No published number||100,000+|
|Claim to fame||Second largest clear aligner manufacturer||Most robust treatment oversight of any at-home clear aligner treatment|
|No food restrictions?||✓||✓|
|No office visits?|
|Covered by insurance (with orthodontic benefits)?||✓||In some cases|
|Personalized customer service?||✓||✓|
|Price Tag?||Ranges from $2,500-$5,000||$3,500+|
|Financing Available?||Varies office to office, may require credit check||Varies from office to office, may require a credit check|
|Treatment Length?||12-18 months, though Flex program can wrap up in just a few months||6-9 months|
|Start-Up Process?||In-person appointment with a ClearCorrect dentist or orthodontist||In-person appointment with a Candid partnered dentist|
Every clear aligner provider makes their aligner trays from safe, BPA free plastic. Though there’s plenty of similarities from aligner to aligner, there are also some differences worth noting too.
Aligners are usually trimmed in one of two ways: straight across, or scalloped to match the gumline. Straight cut aligners overlap the gums, which actually helps them exert more force. This overlap also makes them a little bit easier to spot, so of the two aligner cuts, scalloped is a little more low profile. Basically, it’s a tradeoff either way.
This might sound a little counter intuitive, but the clearest clear aligners aren’t necessarily the most discreet. Our teeth have a matte, porous surface; so clear shiny plastic tends to stand out. Some providers manufacture their aligners to be slightly frosted, which better mimics the natural surface of your tooth.
Let’s take a look at what you can expect from your ClearCorrect and Candid aligners:
|Materials||BPA free Zendura plastic||BPA free, tri-layer Zendura thermoplastic|
|Aligner Cut||Straight cut||Straight cut|
|Aligner Transparency||Slightly frosted plastic||Slightly frosted plastic|
ClearCorrect and Candid have made pretty much the same choices across the board with the make of their clear aligners. Funny enough, Candid actually used to have their aligners manufactured by ClearCorrect. They’ve recently shifted to making their aligners in-house, but it seems like you can expect the same high quality as before.
Regardless of which of these providers you choose, you’ll have aligners that are safe, discreet, and effective.
Both of these providers keep a close eye on your treatment, but they go about this in different ways. Let’s take a closer look at the details of your treatment oversight from ClearCorrect and Candid:
|Frequency of check-ins||Every 4-8 weeks||Every 10-14 days|
|Photos sent via||In-person appointments||CandidApp|
|Treatment Length||12-18 months on average; Flex program can be just a few months||6-9 months|
|Customer Support||Varies from office to office||Candid support every day from 9am-7pm; plus the hours of your Candid dentist’s office|
During your ClearCorrect treatment you’ll visit your provider for regular check-ups. Your doctor will ensure that your teeth are shifting as they should, and make any necessary tweaks to your treatment plan.
With Candid, all your treatment oversight can occur from the comfort of your own home. Thanks to CandidMonitoring, if an issue ever arises, the Candid team or your local dentist can intervene early without causing treatment delays.
If you have a question or need help resolving an issue outside of your regular appointments or check-ins, you’ll need to contact patient support.
There isn’t an overarching support team for ClearCorrect. Instead, you’ll contact your chosen dentist or orthodontist whenever you have questions about your treatment, payment, lost aligners, and so on. They’ll know the ins and outs of your case, so if you need to get a repair, replacement, or treatment modification, your local provider is the best way to get it.
Due to the hybrid nature of Candid’s treatment, your support is two-fold. Candid offers traditional support methods: phone, email, and webchat. Their customer support hours are from 9:00 am to 7:00, even on weekends. If you contact them through social media, you should get a response within 24 hours. The more ‘traditional’ channels are usually a touch faster; a phone call, for example, will get you an almost immediate response. Your dentist’s availability will vary, but it’s great to know support comes from all sides during Candid treatment.
Even though you can’t contact ClearCorrect’s customer support directly, we think that the one-on-one care you’d get from your personal dentist or orthodontist provides excellent support. That said, it’s tough to argue with Candid’s two-pronged patient support; not to mention the convenience of most of your treatment happening from the comfort of your own home.
Bang For Your Buck
A million-dollar smile is exciting, but it shouldn’t cost you a million bucks. The overall price tag of each service matters, and it’s also important to consider what your money gets you.
Let’s take a closer look at what these treatments will cost you from start to finish:
|Aligner Kit||$2,500-$5,000 on average||$3,500+|
|Financing||Payment plans are likely to be available, but the details will vary from office to office and may require a credit check||Varies office to office, but most dentists will have some kind of payment plan available; though it may require a credit check|
|Insurance||If your plan includes orthodontic benefits, there’s a good chance you can receive partial coverage||If you have orthodontic insurance benefits you may receive partial coverage; be sure to reach out to your insurance company to learn about your coverage.|
|Post-Treatment||Varies||Retainer prices will be determined by the dentist overseeing your treatment|
If your condition is very mild, your treatment is likely to be less expensive with ClearCorrect than it would be with Candid. But for moderate conditions, it’s likely that Candid will be the more affordable option. Candid’s price tag also affords you time, since it includes the CandidMonitoring system, which saves you from having to attend frequent in-person appointments.
Of course the cost and quality of your clear aligner treatment are important, but so is how your provider treats you throughout the process. After all, you’re trusting these companies with your smile!
Let’s take a closer look at the way these providers treat their customers:
In the age of Amazon and other internet retailers, online shopping is pretty common. But savvy shoppers are careful to read online reviews before clicking “Buy.” But this is especially important when it involves your health, like clear aligners do.
Here’s a quick glimpse into the online reviews for Candid:
- Top loves: Excellent patient support, helpful communication throughout the process via their app; convenient, effective treatment
- Top complaints: Database does not work with Firefox browser; a little more discomfort than other aligners; emails can get spammy
We tallied up Candid’s total average score for a total of 4.2/5 stars.
It’s a bit harder to tally up a score for ClearCorrect. There are precious few customer reviews online because treatment is provided through independent dental offices. It’s easiest to get a full review (beyond what we’ve included here) directly from your dentist or orthodontist. That said, their long-term reputation speaks pretty well to their quality and service.
We should note that since CandidPro is so new, there are virtually no reviews detailing this particular aspect of treatment. However, we think that all the great reviews Candid amassed when they were a fully remote clear aligner provider should still be taken into consideration.
Overall, Candid has a pretty good reputation, too. We expect that the shift to local dentist involvement will only improve the already great treatment they provide.
With ClearCorrect, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll be too dissatisfied with your treatment. That’s because your orthodontist or dentist will be able to make small adjustments throughout the process. If there are any issues, your dentist will spot them before they become major problems, keeping your treatment on track and ensuring your satisfaction.
That said, the exact warranty you’ll get will depend on your individual provider. You’ll have to ask your orthodontist or dentist to know for sure.
Like many other clear aligner treatment options, Candid doesn’t have refunds or overarching guarantees about the results of your treatment. All of those policies are determined by the dentist administering your care.
ClearCorrect and Candid are both great companies, so if you’re drawn to either one, you’ll get excellent service. However, these two aren’t the only good options.
If you’re still curious about other companies, we’d recommend checking out Byte, our top-ranked at-home aligner company. They leverage excellent value with an equally good product, and they’re significantly cheaper than Candid. Eager to see your perfect smile? Byte is the only choice. Their average treatment length wraps up in just 4 months. Byte also offers nighttime-only treatment, so if you’re unsure about wearing aligners for 22+ hours per day, you have an alternative.
Alternatively, if you’re looking for the most affordable option, check out AlignerCo. At just $1,145, they’re the most budget-friendly method and among our top rated at-home aligners. You won’t get a lot of bells and whistles, but you will get the smile of your dreams at a fraction of the cost. And like Byte, they also offer nighttime treatment, but it doesn’t cost nearly as much. AlignerCo’s NightOnly program will run you $1,345.
Which is Best for You?
Let’s be clear: ClearCorrect and Candid are both good options. However, what works for someone else may not be what’s best for you. Here are some general guidelines for who should choose ClearCorrect and who should opt for Candid:
- Choose Candid If: You want the oversight offered by an in-office treatment with all the convenience of at-home options. Candid offers a ‘best of both worlds’ treatment model that we think could be a good fit for many of our readers.
- Choose ClearCorrect If: You need more extensive adjustments, bite corrections, or you just want the security of having a professional handle your treatment in person.
If you discover that your condition is too severe for home aligner treatment, or if you’re simply more comfortable with fully in-person care, ClearCorrect is a great option. That said, Candid is more convenient, offers more frequent oversight, and in some cases may be more affordable than ClearCorrect.
We think Candid’s unique hybrid offerings could be a great match for people seeking premium treatment oversight with plenty of convenience.
That said, clear aligner treatment is a big purchase, and we understand if you still want to weigh your options. If you’re interested in remote orthodontic care, be sure to compare all the top-rated providers before making a decision.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does either aligner kit offer discounts?
ClearCorrect doesn’t really offer discounts in the traditional sense. However, your individual provider may give you benefits or perks as part of your treatment. Candid’s pricing is determined by the dentist administering your treatment, so any discounts will vary office to office.
Which provider is more patient-focused?
With ClearCorrect, you’ll work directly with an orthodontist or dentist, getting individualized attention along the way. Candid’s hybrid treatment offerings give you the hands-on care of a local dentist, but sophisticated remote oversight via the CandidMonitoring system. ClearCorrect’s in-person appointments may give them an edge here, but we think Candid’s two pronged support centers the patient’s needs for all of treatment.
How exactly does at-home teeth alignment work?
At-home aligner kits like the one from Candid borrow the technology Invisalign pioneered. The Candid team and your dentist will use advanced software to create an individualized treatment plan. That technology can predict exactly how your teeth will move when you switch to the next aligner in your kit. Using each new aligner as a step in the process, Candid gradually moves your teeth from their initial positions to their final destination.
Is there an age requirement for using either ClearCorrect or Candid?
ClearCorrect does not post an explicit age requirement for their treatment; your dentist or orthodontist will consider age on a case-by-case basis. Candid, on the other hand, will treat anyone age 16 and up provided all of their baby teeth are gone. Both companies must receive parental consent before treating a minor.
Can I use ClearCorrect or Candid if I live outside the USA?
Candid is limited to the United States, but ClearCorrect is also available in the UK. If you live abroad, you may want to look into Invisalign or Smile Direct, which are available in multiple other countries.
How do I know whether at-home or in-office treatment is right for me?
Unless your case is very severe, you’re probably a good candidate for at-home aligner treatment through Candid. You can also take a preliminary assessment on Candid’s website, or schedule a complimentary appointment with one of their partnered dentists.
Will either of these clear aligners make me talk funny?
Most clear aligner users find that their aligners are practically imperceptible to others, including during conversation. That said, some people find that they may speak with a slight lisp when they’re first adjusting to their aligners. After a couple of days, this feeling usually goes away.
If I lose my aligners during or after treatment, do I have to pay for new ones?
Candid doesn’t usually replace an aligner if you lose one during treatment. Instead, you’ll just wear your previous aligner until it’s time to move on to the next step. ClearCorrect, however, depends on your individual provider. Your dentist or orthodontist should be your go-to if you lose an aligner. You’ll likely need to pay for a new one, but how much depends on your provider’s policies.
Can I drink coffee when using ClearCorrect or Candid?
You can, but you shouldn’t. Aligners from Candid and ClearCorrect are fairly resilient, but coffee is good at creating stains. Drinking coffee with your aligners in—or any beverage besides water, for that matter—puts you at the risk of staining them.
Are there any hidden costs?
Neither Candid nor ClearCorrect has a whole lot of hidden costs. There will be costs if you lose an aligner, but that’s an added expense that you can prevent. One cost you might not be expecting is post-treatment retainers. They’re an important part of your post-treatment care. Retainers are durable, but not indestructible; you’ll need to replace them about every 6 months.
Are at-home aligners as effective as in-office treatment?
In most mild and moderate cases, yes. Thanks to the tested technologies used by remote treatment companies like Candid, your aligners will fit your teeth as snugly as they would with ClearCorrect. That said, there are exceptions. Some people’s teeth may not shift as quickly as predicted. Other people might not follow the prescribed treatment perfectly. These cases tend not to be as effective.
If you do choose an at-home aligner company, make sure you follow your treatment plan extra carefully. And on the off chance that something seems “off,” you should contact customer support right away. The sooner you correct a minor issue, the more effective your whole treatment process will be.
Which is easier: at-home or in-office aligner treatment?
Once you get past the impression kits, we think it’s a little easier to use at-home aligner treatments. That’s simply because you never have to schedule, remember, or travel to appointments; you’ll get an email or text notification that it’s time to move on to your next aligner instead. For many busy adults, it’s easier to complete all of the steps at home.
Can I still use ClearCorrect if I’m not a candidate for Candid?
In most cases, yes. Candid cannot treat some cases remotely because they require extensive orthodontic oversight. So if your dentist and the Candid orthodontic team determine that they cannot correct your issue—for example, you need an added appliance to help shift your jaw—then you’ll be declined. Since ClearCorrect has extensive orthodontist oversight, it’s usually a good option for people with tougher cases.
Why don’t these treatments have a set price?
Both Candid and ClearCorrect have varying costs. With Candid, your price will vary based on your dentist’s fees, as well as your location. Those factors can also affect the cost of your ClearCorrect treatment, but ultimately the biggest factor affecting your Clear Correct price is the severity of your condition. Generally speaking, the more severe your condition, the more expensive your treatment will end up being.