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My Honest SmileDirectClub Review (first month)

Looking for an honest review of SmileDirectClub? In this post, I share my first month of wearing my aligners and my honest thoughts on the experience.

Note: This post is sponsored by SmileDirectClub and contains affiliate links. All opinions are 100% my own. Read our disclosure policy here.

Smile Direct Club box

Back in December, I posted an in-depth post about my honest experience with SmileDirectClub. In that post, I shared about how it works to get your teeth scanned, what the process is like, and what you can expect if you sign up with SmileDirectClub.

Psst! Missed my Completely Honest Review post? Read it here.

A woman getting a smile direct club scan

Why I Signed Up for SmileDirectClub

Many of you asked whether I had decided to go through with the SmileDirectClub treatment plan. I’m happy to report that I worked up the courage to move forward with getting the aligners. 🙂

As I mentioned in my first post, I didn’t have braces as a child. I often wish that I had when I am doing live videos and I notice my crooked teeth. So I was thrilled to have the opportunity to work with SmileDirectClub and do an honest review of my experience.

My hope is that this honest review will help those of you who have considered trying SmileDirectClub make a very informed decision. In addition, I hope to help some of you who are considering getting braces be inspired to look into a less expensive alternatives.

By the way, my treatment plan is only supposed to be 5 months total, if all goes well. I should have a great new smile by my 38th birthday in October. I’m excited!

Smile Direct Club box

How SmileDirectClub Works

If you missed that post, you can read it here. Here’s a basic recap of how SmileDirectClub works:

  1. You go to a SmileShop to get a 3D scan of your smile (it’s FREE!) OR you use an at-home impression kit (use coupon code MSMDEAL to get 50% off the price) to make an impression so they can build a 3D impression of your smile. (You can see what the at-home impression kit is below.)
  2. Your 3D smile is reviewed by a duly licensed dentist or orthodontist, who will guide your new smile from beginning to end.
  3. They send you a preview of your new smile showing how your smile will transform and begin production of your invisible aligners, as unique to you as a fingerprint.
  4. They send you aligners in the mail that you wear 24/7 (except for when you eat) during a 6-month process. You change these out every week or every other week during the process. (They send you texts to remind you when you need to change the aligners). (Be sure use coupon code MSMDEAL to save an additional $100 off the cost of your aligners!)
  5. You work with a licensed dentist or orthodontist the entire time and they ask you to send periodic photos to help them make sure you are on track.
  6. At the end of 6 months, you can purchase a set of retainers for $99 to help maintain your smile. You just wear them at night to keep your new smile in place.

Smile Direct Club box

What the First Month Has Been Like

I had prepared myself that the first month was going to be rough. Kathrynne currently has braces and I watched her suffer through a lot of mouth pain for the first few weeks after she got them.

To my great surprise, I’ve only experienced mild discomfort with the aligners. I’ve follow their instructions to put the new set on before I go to bed. My teeth have been somewhat sore, but nothing like what I expected.

When you first get your SmileDirectClub kit in the mail with all of your aligners, you go in to their website and set up your plan. You put in the day you started wearing them and then they send you email and text reminders when it’s time to change out aligners. This is perfect for someone like me who gets busy and might not always remember.

By the way, you are supposed to wear the first two sets for one week each and then the third set for two weeks. You repeat this every month.

How Smile Direct Club works

I’m already about 12% done with my treatment plan — and I can already tell that my teeth have shifted and gotten straighter! YAY!

Smile Direct Club box

What I Love About SmileDirectClub

  • I love that the price is less expensive than getting braces. While it depends upon your doctor and insurance, you’re typically going to pay at least $3500 for traditional braces. The SmileDirectClub treatment plan only costs $1895 to $2290 for the entire process! And they do work with some insurance companies, too.
  • I love that I don’t have to go to appointments. Seriously, I know it’s silly, but it’s true. This was one big factor holding me back from moving forward with getting braces was the time involved going to so many orthodontist appointments.
  • I love that they are so thorough in explaining the process and setting you up for success. They send you emails with lots of details, they provide links to in-depth articles, and there is a booklet in your kit that answers all the questions you could have.
  • I love that you can take them out. Okay, call me weird, but the thought of having something semi-permanently stuck in my mouth that only an orthodontist can take out just makes me feel uncomfortable. I love that I can take these out a few times per day to eat and drink.

Smile Direct Club box

What I Don’t Like About SmileDirectClub

  • I don’t like that you have to take them out to eat or drink. You can only drink clear cool water with the aligners in. It can be a bit of a hassle to have to take them out every time to you eat or drink.
  • I don’t like that they seem to attract lipstick. I haven’t changed anything with my lipstick routine, but ever since I got the aligners, I have to be so careful about what lipstick I wear and how I put it on. Multiple times, I’ve discovered that
  • I don’t like that they feel unsanitary sometimes. It feels kind of gross to be taking things in and out of your mouth multiple times per day — especially when I’m out and about or am eating with friends. I’ve gotten better at being able to quickly take them out and stick them in the case, but it feels a little gross to do it in front of people. (Hey, I’m just being honest!)
  • I don’t like that my speech sounds and feels a little garbled. While it doesn’t sound too bad, I can’t talk as clearly as usual with the aligners in. Because of this, I’ve taken them out when I’ve recorded podcasts or spoken at a conference.

(Please note: The aligners are only going on your teeth. They aren’t doing anything with your jaw so they will not correct overbites or other really misaligned teeth issues. You can take a 30-second quiz on their site to see if you are a candidate for their services based upon how your teeth are. I’d recommend getting a second opinion from a local orthodontist if you aren’t sure. I also would highly, highly recommend going into a local shop. This way you can get a scan and make sure you feel comfortable with going through this process.)

Smile Direct Club box

Want to try SmileDirectClub?

If you can’t go into a local SmileShop to get a 3D Scan done, you can order an at-home Impression Kit (shown above). Again, I would personally recommend going into a SmileShop. It’s completely FREE to do so and they do such a great job of giving you such a high-quality scan.

But you if you do end up ordering an at-home Impression Kit, use coupon code MSMDEAL to get 50% off the price.

And if you decide to sign up with SmileDirectClub, you can also use coupon code MSMDEAL at checkout to get $100 off the price of your Invisible Aligners.

Have you used SmileDirectClub before? If so, I’d love to hear your honest opinions and experience with it. If you have any questions about the process, leave them in the comments. I’ll do my best to answer them for you or find out an answer for you!

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16 Comments

  • Esther says:

    What is the total cost?

    • Like I mentioned in the post, it’s $1850 to $2170 depending upon which plan you choose.

    • Teri says:

      I went for my initial exam, told them we would paying cash, but that we’d be saving for it (i.e. “I’m not buying today.”) They sent weekly emails afterwards for *several* weeks, each with a different discount. The first few weeks, it was $100 off. A month later, it was $150 off. Meanwhile, I just kept ignoring the emails because I was waiting til the cash was saved. About 2.5 months after my appointment, I received a coupon code for $300 off!! We had the cash by then, so I jumped on that discount. So, if you’re ok with waiting, you may end up getting a great coupon code. I’m curious to know how much more of a discount they would have offered if I’d waited even longer, lol.

  • Stephanie says:

    Another tip…
    For families with children needing orthodontic work, there are two organizations that offer a ‘scholarship’ of sorts for braces depending on family income and the needs of the child.
    We were so thankful for our teenager to be able to have braces at a substantially reduced cost. The two organizations are:
    Smiles 4 Life: http://www.s4l.org and Smiles Change Lives: http://www.smileschangelives.org.

    The application process is involved, and you do have to submit proof of income, but our total cost was under $1,000 for the entire treatment. Local orthodontists donate their time. It’s really a neat program.

  • Emily C says:

    I just finished my 6 months with Smile Direct Club and couldn’t be happier with my experience. I had a 6 month plan, and did have some soreness, some gum tenderness and bleeding, but nothing dreadful.
    Within the first 3 days of wearing my aligners, I could easily floss around every tooth – something that I had not experienced as an adult because of my crowding!
    There is also a Facebook support group for clients and Perspective clients of Smile Direct, that anyone can join. It’s a great place to vent, commiserate and share photos.
    Good luck!

  • Bernadine says:

    I went in for a consult when I saw an offer for a free $25 Amazon gift card just for attending the consultation, no need to buy. I went to the consult was impressed with the service, and seriously considered it, but didn’t buy them because they couldn’t fix the alignment of my back molars. Some time later I get an email with the amazon code. I input the code and amazon said it was invalid. I called smile direct’s number and the gal guaranteed I would get the code by midnight via email. No code was received. I replied to an email they sent offering me a discount on aligners to say that I feel that I can’t trust them with my money if they can’t even make good on a $25 promotion. I received an email saying they were looking into the gift card situation and I still haven’t heard from them. MoneySavingMom, if there is anything you can do to get me the $25 Amazon gift card code they promised I would appreciate it. Thank you.

    • I’m so sorry you had that experience. I would recommend contacting the people where you got the consult from and seeing if they could help. Unfortunately, I don’t have a direct contact with SmileDirectClub… I only have the company that I work with that works with them and they said they couldn’t help me with customer service issues. 🙁 But definitely call the number again and talk to them and also contact the place where you got the consult from.

      I have purchased multiple gift cards that were invalid, so I know it definitely happens. But it’s so frustrating when it does and SmileDirectClub should definitely make it right to you.

      • Bernadine says:

        Thank you for your help Crystal. I appreciate the response. I will try again with Smile Direct one more time and see what happens. I can’t wait to see your new smile.:)

    • Ronda Roberts says:

      I used Smile Direct because I wore the actual metal and wire braces as a child, for 3 years! My teeth and jaw alignment were awful and also involved oral surgery. So the big stuff has been corrected. However my orthodontist didn’t push retainers for maintenance. For most of my adult life my smile was gorgeous and I just thought I’m one of the lucky ones that didn’t need a retainer. I was wrong. So about 2 years ago I noticed my teeth were shifting and wanted to stop the movement before it got too bad. I really didn’t want to pay $5,000+ to go to an orthodontist so I contacted Smile Direct. The plan was easy, my teeth and gums were tender for each new aligner I switched too, but nothing unbearable. Customer service was always responsive to my questions. It was a very good experience. I’m getting ready to purchase my second set of retainers and I still don’t have any complaints.

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