When Invisalign first introduced clear aligners as an alternative to braces, they took the orthodontic world by storm. But it didn’t take them long to gain some competition.
One of their top competitors is ClearCorrect, the second-largest manufacturer in the entire industry.ClearCorrect is a fantastic clear aligner option, and they can treat the full gamut of cases. But are they the best fit for you?
In this guide, we’ll review and rank the best alternatives to ClearCorrect so you can get to work on achieving your dream smile.
Invisalign | #1
Invisalign was the first company to offer clear aligner treatment. Plenty of other providers have thrown their hats in the ring since, but Invisalign has managed to stay a household name. Let’s take a look at some of the main advantages and disadvantages of this industry mainstay:
- Discreet: Aesthetics are a huge part of why Invisalign and clear aligners are so popular. Invisalign’s clear aligners are practically invisible.
- Experienced: In their over two decades in business, Invisalign has treated more than 12 million people worldwide. There’s no doubt they’ve encountered a case just like yours. They invented this technology, so you’ll be in practiced hands when you choose this provider.
- Effective: Invisalign includes supplementary attachments to assist in complicated tooth shifts. Their SmartForce attachments are small, tooth colored buttons that your doctor will attach to certain teeth to create additional pressure. These attachments are partly why Invisalign can treat practically all of the same conditions that braces can.
- Cost: Invisalign’s cost ranges between $3,000-$8,000. So if you’re seeking alternatives to ClearCorrect because of cost, Invisalign may not be the right fit.
Six Month Smiles | #2
Six Month Smiles offers both clear aligners and ceramic braces through local partnered doctors. Six Month Smiles has been changing smiles since 2007, so they have plenty of experience backing them up. Let’s take a closer look at their main advantages and disadvantages:
- Variety: With Six Months Smiles, you can work with your doctor to decide whether clear braces or clear aligners are the best fit for you.
- Short treatment lengths: Six Month Smiles isn’t bashful about their short treatment lengths — after all, it’s in the company’s name. Though 6 months is their most common treatment length, their full range is 4-9 months. That’s quite a bit faster than the 12-18 month window for ClearCorrect.
- Discreet: Clear braces and clear aligners are both low profile treatment options. Clear aligners are a bit more disguised than clear braces, but both are discreet options.
- Cost: Six Month Smiles typically costs between $3,500-$5,000. That’s pretty similar to ClearCorrect’s pricing, but it’s still a pretty daunting price tag for most people.
- Treatable conditions: The clear aligners from Six Month Smiles can’t treat the same complex conditions as other in-office brands because they don’t use supplemental attachments. Their braces are better equipped to tackle more complicated movements.
At-Home Clear Aligners
At-home clear aligners use the technology that Invisalign created, but they’ve adapted it for remote care. These treatments have a lot to offer, but are they right for you? Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of at-home clear aligner treatment:
- Discreet: At-home clear aligners provide a low profile treatment — most people won’t even realize you’re wearing them.
- Affordable: At-home clear aligners are able to deliver safe treatments at a fraction of the cost of in-office options. Why? Less overhead. In-office options have to finance, well…an office! At-home clear aligners eliminate a significant amount of upfront cost to deliver an affordable treatment option. The average cost of at-home aligner treatment is around $1,900 — which is typically much less than ClearCorrect treatment.
- Convenient: At-home clear aligner treatments take place from the comfort of your own home. You won’t need to attend frequent in-person appointments as you would with ClearCorrect treatment. Remote oversight is usually much easier to incorporate into a busy schedule.
- Flexible: Many at-home clear aligner providers offer a nighttime only form of treatment. Instead of the typical 22+ hours of daily aligner wear, this option allows for just 10 hours of wear a day. Most people just pop in their aligners a couple hours before they go to bed and dream their way to a new smile.
- Short treatment lengths: At-home clear aligner treatments usually wrap up in about 6-9 months; which is especially impressive compared to the 12-18 month timeline for ClearCorrect.
- Treatable conditions: At-home clear aligners are best suited to correct mild to moderate conditions of crowding and spacing. So if your condition is on the severe side, then you’d be better off with an in-office option like ClearCorrect.
- Less one on one care: At-home clear aligners have a high level of oversight, but you won’t be chatting in real time with your doctor. If getting that kind of face time is important to you, then an in-office treatment like ClearCorrect may be a better match for you.
- Insurance coverage: Although some insurance companies contribute to at-home clear aligner treatments, you’re much likelier to receive coverage for an in-office option like ClearCorrect.
With all of that in mind, let’s take a look at some of our top ranked at-home clear aligner providers:
Byte | #1
ClearCorrect got its start in 2006, aiming to be the top competitor to Invisalign. By comparison, Byte is much newer — they started out in 2017. That said, in the short time they’ve been in business, they’ve turned heads with their short treatment times, quality products, and excellent customer service. They’re our #1 ranked home aligner company and a great alternative to ClearCorrect.
Here are a few key ways the two companies compare:
|Price: Byte has a price of $1,895 for daytime treatment and $2,295 for nighttime treatment.||Price: It’s tough to say a definitive price, but we’ve seen average patients quoting everything from $2,500 to $5,000. However, ClearCorrect’s Flex option lets you pay per aligner, so you only pay for what you need.|
|Treatment length: Byte is famous for their short treatment lengths, which last just 4 months on average (5 months for nighttime treatment).||Treatment length: ClearCorrect’s treatment ranges from 12 to 18 months. The exception is their Flex treatment, which (for mild cases) can rival Byte’s speed.|
|Financing: Byte requires a down payment of $249 and then monthly payments of $82 (financing for nighttime treatment is a bit different).||Financing: Your financing options with ClearCorrect will be determined by the provider you see for treatment. This may require a credit check.|
|Daily wear: With Byte you can choose between daytime or nighttime aligners. The daytime option requires 22+ hours of daily wear, and the nighttime option requires just 10 hours of wear.||Daily wear: ClearCorrect requires all-day wear (22 hours minimum).|
|Treatable cases: Byte is able to treat mild to moderate misalignments.||Treatable cases: Because ClearCorrect has add-ons like elastics and attachments, they can handle more severe cases than Byte.|
|Customer service: Byte gives each customer a personal “Byte advisor,” but all of your communication will happen remotely.||Customer service: Any questions or concerns about your ClearCorrect treatment should be directed to your specific dentist or orthodontist’s office.|
Byte is our favorite at-home aligner company, and that’s why we’ve ranked them number one. Their treatments wrap up in just 4 months, they’re affordable, and their Byte-for-Life guarantee ensures that your results last forever. If cost or speed is a big concern for you, then Byte should get your pick. But ClearCorrect is a great choice, too, especially if you have big changes to make.
Candid | #2
A major benefit of ClearCorrect is that you receive direct, in-person oversight from your dentist or orthodontist. This makes it easier to do things like modify the plan on the fly as well as offer feedback and ensure the teeth are progressing correctly. Most at-home aligner companies can’t do that. Candid is somewhat of an exception to this rule.
Though Candid began as a fully remote at-home clear aligner provider, they’ve recently shifted to “CandidPro,” a hybrid at-home/in-office treatment. This treatment balances the hands-on care of in-office treatment with the convenience of at-home options. Your treatment is administered by a local Candid partnered dentist, and overseen remotely via their sophisticated CandidMonitoring system.
Using your smartphone and a special imaging device (part of your treatment bundle), you’ll upload images of your progress every 10-14 days for the Candid team and/or your dentist to review. They can make any necessary tweaks to your treatment, and sometimes even suggest moving ahead to the next aligner ahead of schedule. This can shave a little time off your treatment length.
Treatment oversight isn’t the only difference between these two companies, though. Here’s how Candid and ClearCorrect compare:
|Price: Candid’s price is determined by the dentist administering your treatment. It will be at least $3,500, but it can cost more depending on your dentist’s fees and your location.||Price: With ClearCorrect, most people pay between $2,500 and $5,000. However, ClearCorrect’s Flex option lets you pay per aligner, so it is cheaper and ensures you only pay for what you need.|
|Treatment oversight: Candid’s oversight happens virtually, via their CandidMonitoring program. Every 10-14 days you’ll upload photos to the Candid app. If any issues arise you can visit your dentist again to course correct.||Treatment oversight: With ClearCorrect your treatment oversight will happen at in-person appointments every 4-8 weeks of your treatment.|
|Treatment length: Candid’s average treatment length is between 6-9 months, but if you respond well to treatment, you may get the go-ahead to move to the next aligner early, potentially speeding up treatment overall.||Treatment length: For ClearCorrect, treatment ranges from 12 to 18 months. The exception is their Flex treatment, which (for mild cases) is even faster than Candid.|
|Financing: Candid doesn’t have an overarching financing plan, those details will be determined by the dentist administering your treatment.||Financing: ClearCorrect doesn’t have any set payment plans; you have to talk to your dentist or orthodontist about your options.|
|Treatable cases: Candid can treat mild to moderate misalignments.||Treatable cases: Because ClearCorrect has add-ons like elastics and attachments, they can handle more severe cases.|
|Patient Support: Candid’s support is two-fold. You’ll have the full Candid support team, but you also have the support of the dentist overseeing your treatment.||Patient Support: Any questions or concerns about your ClearCorrect treatment should be directed to your specific dentist or orthodontist’s office.|
Candid is an all-around great company with no glaring issues. Their premium hybrid option offers the best of both at-home and in-office clear aligner treatment; all the expert oversight, none of the inconvenience.
AlignerCo | #3
If there’s an ever-present factor in purchasing decisions, it’s money. And money is a big part of orthodontic treatment, including with ClearCorrect and AlignerCo. Of the two, AlignerCo is going to have a much smaller impact on your wallet. But to make an informed decision between the two, you’ll need to consider other factors, too. Here are a few key ways they compare:
|Price: AlignerCo has a one-size-fits-all price tag of $1,145 for daytime treatment and $1,345 for nighttime treatment.||Price: ClearCorrect prices vary based on your condition’s severity, but you’re likely to pay between $2,500 and $5,000. However, ClearCorrect’s Flex option usually costs less because Flex lets you pay per aligner.|
|Financing: AlignerCo has two financing plans: SmileFlex and SmileFlex Easy. The first uses a credit check to determine if you qualify, and the second is open to everyone who can make a down payment.||Financing: ClearCorrect’s terms are determined by your individual provider, but you may need to pass a credit check.|
|Treatment length: AlignerCo’s average daytime treatment ranges between 6 to 11 months from start to finish. Nighttime treatment usually takes 8 to 12 months.||Treatment length: ClearCorrect’s typical treatment timeline is 12-18 months. The exception is their Flex plan, which (for mild cases) can be even faster than AlignerCo.|
|Treatable cases: AlignerCo can treat mild to moderate crowding and spacing.||Treatable cases: Because ClearCorrect can incorporate add-ons like elastics and attachments, they can address more severe conditions.|
|Customer service: AlignerCo’s customer support is handled by a remote team, but we’ve been impressed by their speed, assistance, and friendliness.||Customer service: If you have questions about ClearCorrect treatment, you need to contact your orthodontist.|
Long story short: AlingerCo is the most affordable at-home aligner company on the market. To be fair, though, ClearCorrect’s Flex option is pretty affordable. (If you’re a candidate for both ClearCorrect Flex and AlignerCo, you’ll have to pick your favorite.) But as we’ve mentioned, cost isn’t the only factor to consider. In fact, a lot of people aren’t even good candidates for AlignerCo treatment. You should opt for ClearCorrect if your teeth are more than “moderately misaligned.”
Smile Direct Club | #4
Smile Direct Club is a pioneer of teledentistry and the oldest wide-scale at-home aligner company. They’re the most popular, having helped over 1.5 million people straighten their smiles. Since they are an industry giant, they can offer certain perks that others cannot, including nighttime aligners and SmileShops. However, it is still a remote treatment, unlike ClearCorrect.
Here are a few important ways ClearCorrect and Smile Direct Club compare:
|Smile Direct Club:||ClearCorrect:|
|Price: Smile Direct Club’s price is $2,050 for both their daytime and nighttime treatment options.||Price: With ClearCorrect, the price depends on your treatment length. We’ve seen fees between $2,500 and $5,000. However, ClearCorrect’s Flex lets you pay a bit less in most cases.|
|Financing: Smile Direct Club’s payment plan requires a down payment of $250 and then monthly payments of $89 for 26 months.||Financing: ClearCorrect has no set terms since they are determined by your doctor’s office. You may need to pass a credit check.|
|Treatment length: Smile Direct Club’s average treatment times clock in at 6 months for daytime treatment and 10 months for nighttime treatment.||Treatment length: ClearCorrect treatments range from 12 to 18 months. The exception is their Flex treatment, which can be even faster than Smile Direct Club.|
|Daily wear: Smile Direct Club has two treatment options. All day (22+ hours of wear) treatment, or nighttime only treatment (10 hours of daily wear.||Daily wear: With ClearCorrect, you have to wear your aligners basically all the time (22+ hours per day).|
|Treatable cases: Smile Direct Club can treat cases of mild to moderate crowding and spacing.||Treatable cases: Because ClearCorrect can incorporate add-ons like elastics and attachments, they can handle more severe cases.|
|Customer service: Smile Direct Club’s customer support team is entirely remote, and even though they’ve had some rough patches over the years, they’ve made significant improvements.||Customer service: Any questions or concerns about your ClearCorrect treatment should be directed to your specific dentist or orthodontist’s office.|
Smile Direct Club isn’t our top-ranked at-home aligner service, but they’re near the top of the list for many shoppers. That’s not too surprising since they’ve made such a big name for themselves. In general, if you need an affordable option that’s relatively quick (or flexible if you want nighttime treatment), then Smile Direct Club is a better option than ClearCorrect.
That said, ClearCorrect is a great choice if you have an extreme case. They may be more expensive, but their aligners can handle a wider range of teeth movements.
Which ClearCorrect Alternative Should You Choose?
With so many great options, choosing a method for correcting your alignment can be difficult. However, we stand behind every company on this list, so if your gut is telling you one is right for you, go for it.
That said, our favorite services are Byte and Candid. Byte has the industry’s shortest treatment lengths, and their Byte for Life guarantee gives you a lot of peace of mind. Meanwhile, the hands-on care and robust treatment oversight offered by Candid can also provide plenty of peace of mind. Candid is an all around great option, which is why they snagged the #2 spot in our rankings. If you’d like to know more about either of these services, check out our in-depth reviews of Byte and Candid.
What is misalignment of the teeth?
In essence, it is when the relationships between the teeth, either side to side or top to bottom, are not correct. This can be due to gaps, crowding, twisted teeth, and even irregularities in the jaw. Most misalignments can be corrected with either clear aligners or braces.
Is it really important to have straight teeth?
Not always. Sometimes misalignment is just cosmetic, and if you like the way your smile looks, it has no impact. However, in many cases, misalignment can damage the teeth, cause pain, and even hurt your ability to chew and digest food.
What do aligners do to move the teeth?
They direct pressure against the teeth through their shape. Each aligner is shaped a little differently, changing where the pressure is applied and moving the teeth a bit more.
If I choose nighttime treatment, will it cause problems?
No, there are no inherent problems with nighttime treatment. Just know that if you choose it, you will see results slower than with all-day treatment.
Will I be required to visit the dentist during my treatment?
Not for mail-order aligners. However, you should see your general dentist prior to starting treatment and every six months for your usual checkup.
How can I keep my smile looking great after treatment?
You will need to wear retainers. At first, you will wear them pretty much all the time, then reduce your wear schedule according to your aftercare instructions. You can also do other cosmetic treatments to enhance your smile, such as teeth whitening.
What happens if I don’t love my results?
Most companies are willing to work with you to get the smile you want. You can contact them about your concerns and see if they will make a few more aligners to get your teeth to where you want them to be.
Why are treatment lengths shorter for mail-order clear aligners than traditional treatments?
There are a few reasons why treatment goes faster with online aligners.
- They’re limited to making small corrections, so treatment takes less time.
- You can move between aligners each week, while braces can only be adjusted every month.
- Some companies use special devices to speed up tooth movement.
What do I do if I have a dental problem during treatment?
If it is an emergency, especially if accompanied by a head injury, go to the ER or urgent care. If it is not an emergency, contact your general dentist.