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Which toothbrush cleaners are best?

Brushing your teeth twice a day is a habit most have adopted to maintain healthy teeth and gums, but how often do you clean the toothbrush you brush your teeth with?

If left unsanitized, a toothbrush can become a breeding ground for bacteria. Simply rinsing it off with water after every use doesn’t guarantee the removal of germs. Toothbrush cleaners can use UV rays to remove up to 99% of bacteria. Our top pick is TAO Clean Germ Shield UV Sanitizer, which is not only effective but also portable for travel. 

What to know before you buy a toothbrush cleaner

Benefits of a toothbrush cleaner 

You will never be able to completely sterilize your toothbrush, but most toothbrush cleaners that use ultraviolet light serve two primary functions when your toothbrush is not in use: 

  • Kill germs: Heat and humidity can build up in the bathroom, and that becomes a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and viruses that can find their way onto your toothbrush. Storing your toothbrush in a cleaner after every use can kill those germs.  
  • Eliminate odor: With bacteria comes the possibility of odor, so by removing germs you can eliminate any odor on your toothbrush. 


Most toothbrush cleaners were designed to fit all standard toothbrushes as well as electric toothbrushes. Even if a device can’t support the entire electric toothbrush, it should be able to hold the toothbrush head. But double check the manufacturer’s guidelines to make sure that your toothbrush is compatible with their device. 

Some models were designed to hold a single toothbrush and others can hold up to five individual brushes. Those larger models can be mounted on the wall, while many of the smaller devices are portable and are good to take on the road when traveling. 

What to look for in a quality toothbrush cleaner 

Electric or battery-powered 

While some models conveniently plug into an electrical outlet, some of the smaller and portable models are battery powered. If you plan to bring your toothbrush cleaner with you on the road, make sure you have backup batteries. 


Whether purchasing a model for a single toothbrush, or one for the entire family, a cover can be a good way to both protect your toothbrush and keep it clean when you aren’t using it. You just want to make sure there is proper airflow to avoid bacteria from growing inside the cover, which is why some models with a cover come with a built-in fan.  


You don’t have to worry about turning on your toothbrush cleaner and forgetting about it as most devices come equipped with a timer. These automatically turn the device off after 5 or 6 minutes to help save battery and prolong the lifespan of the device. 

How much can you expect to spend on a toothbrush cleaner?

The smaller, portable toothbrush cleaners that hold only one toothbrush can be found for as little as $10. The bigger models that hold multiple toothbrushes can cost over $35. But most quality toothbrush cleaners can be found for between $20-$30. 

Toothbrush cleaner FAQ

Are toothbrush cleaners safe?

A.  As long as you’re using an FDA-approved toothbrush cleaner and follow the instructions properly, they are perfectly safe. 

Do I still need to replace my toothbrush when using a toothbrush cleaner?

A. Yes! You can improve your oral health by utilizing a toothbrush cleaner, but the bristles can become worn over time, so it’s still recommended that you replace your toothbrush every 3 months, or as directed by your dental professional.

What’s the best toothbrush cleaner to buy?

Top toothbrush cleaner

TAO Clean Germ Shield UV Sanitizer

TAO Clean Germ Shield UV Sanitizer 

What you need to know: This battery operated and travel-friendly toothbrush cleaner can accommodate any manual and electric toothbrush. The ultraviolet c-rays kill 99.9% of germs. 

What you’ll love: After every use, simply open the UV sanitizer door and place your toothbrush with the bristles facing toward the door to sanitize your toothbrush whenever it’s not in use. Alkaline batteries are included and this product comes with a two-year warranty that covers any manufacturer defects.  

What you should consider: Some users feel that this device runs through batteries much too quickly. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Top toothbrush cleaner for the money

Pursonic S1 Portable UV Toothbrush Sanitizer

Pursonic S1 Portable UV Toothbrush Sanitizer

What you need to know: Good for either home or travel, this small and portable toothbrush sanitizer fits all toothbrushes’ electric toothbrush heads.

What you’ll love: The Pursonic case automatically turns on when the toothbrush is inserted and turns off after 5 minutes. It’s easy to open and clean. The case is made from environmentally friendly material. The UV bulbs last the lifespan of the case.

What you should consider: Some users have questioned the durability of this case, and reported a finicky UV light switch after extended use.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Sarmocare UV Toothbrush Holder with Sterilization Function

Sarmocare UV Toothbrush Holder with Sterilization Function 

What you need to know: Excellent for families, this toothbrush holder can sanitize up to five toothbrushes at a time. It even has a toothpaste squeezer dispenser, so you can get all of the toothpaste out of the tube without any fuss. 

What you’ll love: This not only cleans and sanitizes your toothbrushes, but it also comes with a sanitary dust cover and a built-in fan to improve airflow. The unit automatically turns off after 6 minutes, and the lithium polymer battery can last for 25 uses without being recharged. 

What you should consider: Some users had trouble mounting the unit to the bathroom wall. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Ryan Dempsey writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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