Invisalign vs SmileDirectClub

The invisible aligner industry is booming, with several new companies emerging with their own unique way to make your new picture-perfect smile a reality. Invisalign is likely the most recognized name in the invisible braces industry, launching their product/service over 20 years ago. On the other hand Smile Direct Club has been around since 2014, but has shown tremendous growth by serving over 750,000 customers so far. 
 
Many people are torn between Invisalign and Smile Direct Club. When comparing the two companies side by side, there are a few similarities, but there are also some major differences. While both companies rely on clear, plastic trays to gently move your teeth into the desired position, the treatment process and delivery are entirely different. 
 

Invisalign vs Smile Direct Club

Invisalign is known for its innovative technology, high-quality products and trusted dentist led invisible braces treatments.

Smile Direct Club is know for its affordability, at home convenience, and short treatment time.

Below will show a side by side comparison of the key factors that make Invisalign vs Smile Direct Club different. The most notable factors include —
  • The average cost of each invisible braces treatment
  • The down payment and monthly payment requirements
  • The number of payment options
  • The average length of invisible braces treatment time
  • The average cost of the impression kit
  • The customer service ratings
  • The companies trustworthiness
  • The quality of the product
Invisalign logo
#5 Invisalign
6.6 Overall Score
4.5
starstarstarstarstar_half
(57)
SmileDirectClub logo verified_user
#3 SmileDirectClub
6.7 Overall Score
2.1
starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
(75)

Overview

Invisalign

SmileDirectClub

Down Payment
Down Payment
Varies
$250
Monthly Payment
Monthly Payment
Varies
$85
Contract Length
Contract Length
Varies
24 Months
Impression Kit
Impression Kit
Undisclosed
$49
Cost of Additional/Replacement Retainers
Cost of Additional/Replacement Retainers
Undisclosed
$99
Average Duration of Treatment
Average Duration of Treatment
15 Months
6 Months
Number of Payment Options
Number of Payment Options
4
5
Time In Business
Time In Business
22 Years
5 Years

Ratings

Invisalign

SmileDirectClub

Overall Score
Overall Score
6.6 of 10
6.7 of 10
Review Score
Review Score
4.5
starstarstarstarstar_half
2.1
starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
Value for Money
Value for Money
4.3
starstarstarstarstar_half
2.2
starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
Quality of Product or Service
Quality of Product or Service
4.5
starstarstarstarstar_half
2.2
starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
Customer Service
Customer Service
4.5
starstarstarstarstar_half
2.1
starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
Company Trustworthiness
Company Trustworthiness
4.6
starstarstarstarstar_half
2.0
starstar_halfstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Likely to Recommend
Likely to Recommend
8.0 of 10
2.2 of 10

Reviews

Invisalign

SmileDirectClub

Number of Reviews
Number of Reviews
57
75
Review Breakdown
Review Breakdown
4.5
starstarstarstarstar_half
5 star
65%
4 star
28%
3 star
2%
2 star
4%
1 star
2%
2.1
starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
5 star
12%
4 star
12%
3 star
4%
2 star
11%
1 star
61%

Reviews for Invisalign

Helpful Favorable Review

starstarstarstarstar
Angie Burnett
December 12th, 2019 Orem, UT DETAILS
Value for your money
starstarstarstar_borderstar_border
Quality of product or service
starstarstarstarstar
Customer service
starstarstarstarstar
Company trustworthiness
starstarstarstarstar

I wanted to straighten my teeth and had adult orthodontia insurance, I went to my orthodontist and received Invisalign. The whole process was very smooth. I did have to have brackets put on my teeth during treatment. On top of that I had to do 2 refinements. But considering that they were clear and invisible I didn't mind.


Helpful Critical Review

starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Nancy Estrada
March 26th, 2019 DETAILS
Value for your money
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Quality of product or service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Customer service
starstarstarstarstar_border
Company trustworthiness
starstarstar_borderstar_borderstar_border

I’m not too happy with Invisalign I wish I could rate it zero. Too expensive and little to no progress. Wish I could get a refund


Reviews for SmileDirectClub

Helpful Favorable Review

starstarstarstarstar
Jackie C.
November 13th, 2019 Nashville, TN DETAILS
Value for your money
starstarstarstarstar
Quality of product or service
starstarstarstarstar
Customer service
starstarstarstarstar
Company trustworthiness
starstarstarstarstar

I started nighttime only aligners which no other companies offer. It would be really difficult with my job to have to wear aligners all day so night time only is perfect. I am almost done with the plan and my teeth look INCREDIBLE!!!! The process has been really painless and the folks at the Smile shop I visited were incredibly helpful. I am just LOVING my new smile!!!! FINALLY... a solution for me that doesn't require months of ugly trays in my mouth all day. : )


Helpful Critical Review

starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Logan Rosselli
November 18th, 2019 Corona, CA DETAILS
Value for your money
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Quality of product or service
starstarstarstar_borderstar_border
Customer service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Company trustworthiness
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border

Would not recommend at all. Everything was fine with my aligners, and then I had to get my retainer. They sent me the wrong one. Not a big deal - mistakes happen, I'll just let them know to resend it. So they send me a new one. It's the wrong size again. So now I'm annoyed but I get sent new ones. Wrong AGAIN. Now they have just sent me two months worth of new aligners. I don't need aligners, I need retainers! Horrible job done by a horrible company.


The Final Word

As shown in the table above, If you want to straighten your smile, both companies can make that happen. However, there are several factors you should consider before settling on one company. Below will highlight the differences the standout in the Invisalign vs Smile Direct Club face off.
 

 1. How the average costs compare    

The average Smile Direct Club cost is going to be significantly cheaper compared to the cost of Invisalign — Why?
 
Smile Direct Club relies solely on virtual communication, meaning there are no trips to the dentist or office visit fees. You are only paying for the product, there is no up charge to compensate for time spent one on one with a dentist. To start the entire process, you'll take a free 30-second online smile assessment. If approved, you'll get your at-home impression kit. Then a licensed dentist or orthodontist will create a treatment plan and your aligners will be shipped to your home. 

Depending on how you look at it, this can be a pro or a con. 
 

 2. The quality of orthodontist treatment vs. at-home treatment  

Smile Direct Club does the whole clear aligner process remote. The send supplies to your door and you consult with their professionals over the phone. While you might be thrilled at the fact that you won't ever have to visit a dentist's office again, it also means you won't be able to consult directly with your dentist if there are any problems or concerns. You'll have to rely on a stranger over the phone — who doesn't personally know you or your teeth — for advice and guidance. 
 
Those that choose Invisalign love the trusted assurance that they get from going into their orthodontist. It brings many patients peace of mind to know that for the extra money, their misaligned teeth will receive personalized attention to ensure the straightest smile in the end possible.

Another thing to consider is the quality of impressions versus the quality of scans. Smile Direct Club has its customers take their own impressions with a putty-like substance. By having the customer make the molds themselves, this increases the likelihood of needing a second or third impression — which can delay your straightening process by several weeks. Additionally, a putty mold isn't the most reliable method for capturing exact details. 

Invisalign eliminates the need for goopy putty molds and instead uses the iTero Element® scanner to get a 3D image of the patient's teeth. A high-resolution, interactive image of your teeth, taken by a professional is going to be more accurate and reliable than a putty mold. 

If you prefer you can visit a SmileDirectClub SmileShop (located throughout the country) and get a 3D scan instead of making an at-home impression. This is free of charge; however, it kind of negates the convenient, do-it-from-home aspect that SmileDirectClub advertises. 
 

 3. Customer service  

Lastly, before choosing a company, it's important to consider the company's customer service. The advantage Invisalign has over Smile Direct Club is the fact that people are working with their personal dentist and everything comes through them. Unfortunately, SmileDirectClub when it comes to customer service has struggled to keep up with consumer demands resulting in late shipments, mixed up orders, and other poor customer service experiences. 

If you want to straighten your teeth but don't want to have to visit the dentist every few weeks, Smile Direct Club might be for you. However, keep in mind that while straightening your teeth from home is convenient, it leaves ample room for user error and complete trust in someone you've never met. 
 

The bottom line 

The cost of Invisalign's clear aligners are going to cost more. You're going to have to visit the dentist's office every few weeks since your dentist/orthodontist will be your Invisalign provider however, at least you can sleep at night knowing that if a problem occurs you have someone you know and trust who can help solve the problem. You are also more likely to get better fitted aligners that can fix your crooked teeth due to the dental in house 3D image scanner compared to the traditional putty impressions.
 
The cost of Smile Direct Club is thousands of dollars cheaper and, on average, treatment time is significantly shorter than Invisalign's with the average time coming in at around six months. The convenience of the remote at-home treatment can be a huge bonus for some, or turn off for others who prefer more personalized supervision during their treatment.
 
Both are great companies with great customer reviews. We highly recommend customers in search of straighter teeth choose the the invisible braces provider that best suites their needs. For more info and customer reviews about Smile Direct Club, Invisalign and other top clear aligners companies, compare all top clear aligner companies here

top choice

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