The 5 Best Water Flossers, Tested By Dentists

Best Overall Water Flosser

Waterpik ION Professional Cordless Water Flosser Teeth Cleaner

ION Professional Cordless Water Flosser Teeth Cleaner

Best Overall Water Flosser

Waterpik ION Professional Cordless Water Flosser Teeth Cleaner

Now 20% Off

Pros
  • Tabletop but also cordless
  • Small compact size
  • Large water reservoir
  • 10 pressure settings
Cons
  • Needs to be charged
  • Not portable

Both Dr. Kahng and Dr. Aguilera recommend Waterpik water flossers, especially this one, because “they’re products tend to last longer” and this one specifically is “reliable and durable,” says Dr. Kahng. It’s a classic tabletop model with a few upgrades that integrate professional style water flossing with user friendly versatility.

Because it’s a larger tabletop model, it’s packed with features like 10 different pressure settings, a large water reservoir that allows for 90 seconds of water flossing and a built-in timer that pauses every 30 seconds to help you keep track of the time (so you know if you’ve spent too much time on one area, for instance). It also comes with seven different tips and a rotating head that allows you to reach every nook and cranny of your teeth and gums.

All those features are packed into a small but mighty package. This tabletop model is smaller than many others (it’s only about 6 inches by 6 inches) and best of all, the entire base is rechargeable, so you don’t have to keep it plugged in to use it. That’s a godsend for people with small bathrooms or limited outlets. The rechargeable lithium-ion battery holds about 4 weeks of charge, so even if you use it every day, you only need to charge it once a month. There’s even an LED charge indicator to let you know when the battery is running low.

Read more: Best Oral Hygiene Products

Tabletop or Portable Tabletop
Corded or Cordless Cordless
Reservoir Capacity 20 oz
Water Pressure 10-100 psi
Tips 7
ADA Seal? Yes
Battery Life Up to 4 weeks

Best Portable Water Flosser

Burst Water Flosser

Water Flosser

Best Portable Water Flosser

Burst Water Flosser

Now 26% Off

Pros
  • Long-lasting USB charge
  • Water-resistant
  • 360 degree swiveling head
  • Travel bag included
Cons
  • Only three settings
  • Small reservoir

When you choose a portable water flosser, you often need to sacrifice some features only because they’re smaller devices with less space to pack in technology. This portable flosser, however, seems to have hardly sacrificed any. Notably, the lengthy charge (up to 80 days!) which Dr. Khang says is why she recommends this one for patients looking for a portable option. It’s charged with a USB, as well, which means you don’t have to hunt down a special cord every time you charge it (or carry it with you on the go).

In terms of cleaning ability, this one is powerful with 160 psi pressure. While you can’t choose your own pressure, there are three different settings – standard (the gentlest), turbo (stronger) and a pulsing mode that is meant to massage your gums. The head also rotates, allowing you to easily clean hard to reach areas of your mouth and get in all the nooks and crannies.

The reservoir is on the small side, which is expected in a portable device, but the whole package is water resistant which means you can use it in the shower if that’s the kind of thing you want to do. The reservoir is easy to refill, as well, and you don’t need to take the whole thing apart in order to refill it, which is the case with some other portable models.

Tabletop or Portable Portable
Corded or Cordless Cordless
Reservoir Capacity 110 mL
Water Pressure 160 psi
Tips 1 included (others can be purchased)
ADA Seal? No
Battery Life Up to 80 days

Best Designed Water Flosser

Quip Cordless Water Flosser

Cordless Water Flosser

Best Designed Water Flosser

Quip Cordless Water Flosser

Pros
  • Sleek design
  • Large reservoir (for a portable model)
  • Tip refill subscription option
  • Long lasting charge
Cons
  • Only two pressure modes
  • Custom charging cable

We hate to say it, but lots of water flossers rely on functionality and aren’t necessarily the nicest to look at. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but for those of us that like form and function, the Quip water flosser sits perfectly in the middle of that venn diagram. This sleek, well-designed water flosser looks great sitting on your bathroom counter but also effectively cleans your teeth both at home and on the go.

From a functionality standpoint, “Quip’s technology can’t be beat,” says Dr. Rubenshtein. “It has a rotating magnetic floss tip, two pressure modes, two water flow settings, plus a large reservoir with extra-wide top-open lid and magnetic charging cable.” Those two pressure modes, gentle and deep clean, allow you to choose your pressure based on your comfort level (we suggest starting with gentle since the brand doesn’t disclose the exact psi) and the water flow modes allow for either a continuous steady stream of water or “on demand,” meaning the water only flows when you’re pressing the button. That’s a good thing if you’re trying to reach certain areas or if you’re new to water flossing.

The large (for a portable device) water reservoir is the full length of the flosser itself, allowing for more water storage and thus a longer floss time (a full 60 seconds on gentle mode). It’s also easy to refill, with a, flip up top, but we should note that it works best if you have a pretty deep sink to get the full device under the faucet. The magnetic charging cable is innovative as well, and uses a USB adapter to plug in to the wall (though the charging cord itself is custom). Overall, it’s a sleek, well designed water flosser that pretty much anyone will find effective.

Tabletop or Portable Portable
Corded or Cordless Cordless
Reservoir Capacity 5 oz
Water Pressure Undisclosed
Tips 1
ADA Seal? No
Battery Life Up to 8 weeks

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Best Classic Water Flosser

Waterpik Aquarius

Aquarius

Best Classic Water Flosser

Waterpik Aquarius

Pros
  • 10 different pressure settings
  • 90 seconds of use with no refills
  • Swiveling head
  • Reservoir is dishwasher safe
Cons
  • Must be plugged in to use

When you think of a water flosser, this is probably what you picture. It’s one of the more classic models from Waterpik, which remember both Dr. Aguilera and Dr. Kahng endorse (they both mentioned this one by name as well). It’s on the larger size – in fact, it’s the largest on this list – so you’ll need ample room in your bathroom to store it – not to mention an easily accessible wall plug to keep it plugged in. But if you have both of those things, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better water flosser than this one.

From a features standpoint, this has it all. There are 10 different pressure settings, which are easily changed with a dial on the side, that allow you to adjust the pressure between 10 and 100 psi so you can find the exact right pressure for your comfort level. There are two modes (floss and massage) and it comes with seven different interchangeable tips. There is also a built-in timer that pauses every 30 seconds that allows you to easily keep track of how long you’ve been flossing, not to mention a swiveling head that allows you to clean even the smallest nooks and crannies of your mouth.

Since this water flosser is large, the water reservoir is equally large. It holds 22 ounces of water, which allows for a full 90 seconds of flossing without the need to refill. It’s also dishwasher safe, which means cleaning is a breeze. If space isn’t an issue for you, and you don’t care about portability, this classic water flosser is one of your best bets from both a functional and efficacy standpoint.

Tabletop or Portable Tabletop
Corded or Cordless Corded
Reservoir Capacity 22 oz
Water Pressure 10-100 psi
Tips 7
ADA Seal? Yes
Battery Life N/A

Best Luxury Water Flosser

Proclaim Custom-Jet Oral Health System

Proclaim Custom-Jet Oral Health System

Best Luxury Water Flosser

Proclaim Custom-Jet Oral Health System

Now 11% Off

Pros
  • Process is only 7 seconds
  • Uniform pressure and water volume
  • Can replace flossing
  • Large water reservoir
Cons
  • More expensive compared to other water flossers
  • Large size can take up space in smaller bathrooms

Calling this futuristic device a water flosser may be dumbing it down a bit. Unlike traditional water flossers which use a small tip to manually clean between your teeth, the way you would use traditional floss, and are recommended to be used in addition to flossing, the Proclaim “pulses 22 ounces of water through a [custom made] mouthpiece in just 7 seconds and can replace flossing,” says Dr. Marashi, who was not a fan of water flossers until he tried this.

Here’s how it works: you visit an accredited dentist who makes a 3D scan of your mouth which is then used to create a custom mouthpiece. Once the mouthpiece is made, it can be attached to the machine, which then floods water through the mouthpiece into your mouth with precision. Using it takes a bit of getting used – you have to lean over your sink to allow the water to drain – but the whole process is a fraction of the time it takes to use a traditional water flosser and without any movement on your part.

“The custom-fitted mouthpiece allows for precision placement of the water jets and each area is subjected to the same amount of time and volume of water,” says Dr. Marashi. “It eliminates user error, removes both food and bacteria and can improve overall oral health.” It’s a high price tag for a water flosser, but the ease of use and effectiveness makes it ideal for beginners to advanced users and the same device can be used with multiple custom mouthpieces so more than one person in your household can safely use it.

Tabletop or Portable Tabletop
Corded or Cordless Corded
Reservoir Capacity 22 oz
Water Pressure Undisclosed
Tips 1 custom mouthpiece
ADA Seal? No
Battery Life N/A

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How To Use a Water Flosser

Most water flossers, except the Proclaim which uses a custom mouthpiece, can be used the same way. Using the proper tip (most people can use the classic tip – unless you have certain kinds of dental work), “start by following along your gum line” before moving into the areas between your teeth, says Dr. Kahng. “It’s best to begin at a low setting and work your way up to a high setting as your gums adapt.”

Remember you want hard-but-tolerable pressure in order to adequately clean between your teeth and gums. Pressure that is too low won’t be effective. Position the tip at a 90-degree angle to your teeth and gums and make sure it’s not touching or resting on your gums.

Most dentists recommend following a water flossing session with traditional floss to really make sure you clean between teeth effectively, especially if you don’t have much space between teeth. If you want, you can use traditional floss in the morning and a water flosser in the evening, says Dr. Aguilera. He also says that you can “increase the antibacterial benefits of your water flosser by filling the water basin with a combination of alcohol-free mouth rinse and water.”

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