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The 6 cheapest teeth aligners for 2021

Compare invisible braces on costs and payment plans

Profile picture of Kathryn Parkman
by Kathryn Parkman ConsumerAffairs Research Team
SmileDirectClub and Byte
woman holding clear aligner

For many people, teeth aligners are a popular alternative to braces. You enjoy more flexibility wearing them, plus they usually cost less. Below, compare our favorite affordable straightening treatments, all starting under $2,000 and with financing available.

Teeth straightening cost considerations

There are a few big factors that affect the cost of your aligners. The main one is the length of time you need to wear them. If you have a more severe case, you’ll likely need to wear your retainers for a longer period of time, meaning more retainers to switch out and in. This leads to higher costs with certain companies, though some sell their aligners at the same price regardless of how many you need.

Look for deals like rebates or half-price discounts on starter kits.

Invisible braces are getting cheaper all the time. A few years ago, average prices started between $1,800 and $2,000. These days, it’s common to see base pricing closer to $1,000. Look for a company with transparent pricing information. Some of the most recommended brands offer regular discounts and specials, such as rebates and half-price impression kits.

Other factors to consider include insurance. Many aligner companies accept insurance, but make sure you contact them ahead of time to see if your specific provider is included on the list. An HSA or FSA can also help save you on overall treatment costs.

Our 6 picks for most affordable teeth aligners

All of our recommendations for cheap aligners have an average starting cost under $2,000. Each company offers transparent cost information, making it easy to understand the available financing terms, whether in-house or through a third party. To meet our standards, companies also had to offer aligners made from BPA-free plastic. Some, but not all, of our selections participate in the ConsumerAffairs Authorized Partner Program.

Our pick for the most affordable overall
AlignerCo

Company nameContact
alignerco cta logo
LogoSummary
  • Base starting price: $995 to $1,195*
  • Financing terms: $90 to $109 per month over 11 to 12 months. Down payment may be required.*
  • Impression kit: $39.99*
Read more

*As of publishing. Financing terms can vary.

With aligners that cost $995 as of publishing, AlignerCo offers the cheapest invisible braces that meet our vetting criteria. The company offers both all-day and night-only teeth aligners. Day aligners cost $995 and can lead to a straighter smile in as little as six months. Nighttime aligners start at $1,195 and give results after about eight months of treatment. Military discounts are available.

Eligible customers can pay in installments starting at $90 per month. Installment plans are available with or without a credit check. AlignerCo refunds the cost of the impression kit if you return it and are determined not to be a good candidate for treatment.

Our pick for fast treatments
Byte

Company nameContact
byte logo
LogoSummary
  • Base starting price: $1,895 to $2,295*
  • Financing terms: $83 to $99 per month for 29 months with $349 to $449 down*
  • Impression kit: $29.95*
Read more

*As of publishing. Financing terms can vary.

Byte is an at-home, orthodontist-directed invisible aligner treatment. Treatments are monitored remotely to make sure everything is working as it should. Customers can see results in as little as three months with all-day aligners. All purchases include a lifetime guarantee.

Byte offers financing with 100% approval. Daytime aligners are available for $83 per month over 29 months with a $349 down payment ($2,763 total with 7.76% APR); nighttime aligners are $99 per month over 29 months with a $449 down payment ($3,336 total with 7.76% APR). Byte includes the first set of retainers free. Military and student discounts are available. For more, compare byte vs. SmileDirectClub.

Our pick for no required down payment
SnapCorrect

Company nameContact
snapcorrect logo
LogoSummary
  • Base starting price: $1,749*
  • Financing terms: $80.84 per month over 24 months*
  • Impression kit: $49*
Read more

*As of publishing. Financing terms can vary.

SnapCorrect sells what it calls a “truly invisible” clear aligner. You can compare the look of aligners from different companies on its website. Customers see results in three to 18 months. As of publishing, aligner treatments cost $1,749 when you make one payment upfront. Monthly payment plans are available through Affirm.

We like that SnapCorrect offers a refund of the impression kit fee with its Truly Happy Smile Guarantee if it decides you aren’t a good candidate for treatment. Plus, you get your first retainer set free. Additional sets are $95 each.

Our pick for in-office consultations
SmileDirectClub

Company nameContact
smiledirectclub logo
LogoSummary
  • Base starting price: $1,950*
  • Financing terms: $89 per month over 24 months with a $250 deposit*
  • Impression kit: $0 to $29*
Read more

*As of publishing. Financing terms can vary.

SmileDirectClub is an invisible braces company that offers both day and night aligners. Both cost $1,950 when you pay upfront. Payment plans require a $250 deposit and include $89 payments over 24 months ($2,386 total). No credit check is necessary. Costs include premium teeth whitening. Retainers cost $99 per set.

You can get treatment entirely online or visit a SmileShop for a free, in-person consultation and teeth scan. SmileDirectClub has locations in 34 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. Customers can complete treatment in as little as four months. For more information, compare SmileDirectClub vs. Invisalign.

Our pick for flexible financing terms
Smilelove

Company nameContact
smilelove logo
LogoSummary
  • Base starting price: $1,895*
  • Financing terms: $62 per month over 24 months with $250 down payment; 12-, 18- and 24-month plans*
  • Impression kit: $250 or included with bundle*
Read more

*As of publishing. Financing terms can vary.

Smilelove's upfront costs are comparable to those from similar brands. Its financing options are what make it stand out. Through the Smilelove Monthly Plan, you can pay in installments as low as $62 over 24 months, with 100% approval. You can also opt for a 12- or 18-month payment plan.

Smilelove includes the impression kit when you make a bundle purchase, which also includes post-treatment retainers and free teeth whitening. However, keep in mind that there is an additional $300 charge if your treatment requires more than 40 aligners. The average treatment time is between six and eight months.

Our pick for financing with 0% APR
NewSmile

Company nameContact
newsmile logo
LogoSummary
  • Base starting price: $1,195 to $1,295*
  • Financing terms: $84 to $92 per month over 12 months with a $295 down payment*
  • Impression kit: $49 or included*
Read more

*As of publishing. Financing terms can vary.

NewSmile offers both daytime and nighttime aligners. You can pay $1,195 or $1,295 upfront or $84 or $92 per month over 12 months. Payment plans require a one-time $295 deposit. All applicants are approved.

NewSmile treatment plans include the impression kit, aligners, whitening and retainers. You can also choose to start by ordering just an impression kit for $49, which is refundable if you are not eligible for treatment. Service members receive a $200 discount. Treatment with NewSmile aligners takes four to six months.

Invisible braces cost comparison

Below, compare our picks for most affordable aligners on impression kit prices, monthly payment plans, financing terms and total treatment costs.

Impression kit*Monthly payment plan*Financing terms*Total treatment cost*
alignerco logo mini$39.99$90 to $10911 -to12 months with $275 to $345 down$995 to $1,195
byte mini logo$29.95$83 to $9929 months with $349 to $449 down$1,895 to $2,295
snapcorrect logo mini$49$80.8424 months$1,749
smiledirectclub logo mini$0 to $29$8924 months with $250 down$1,950
smilelove logo mini$0 to $250$6212, 18 or 24 months with down payment$1,895
newsmile logo mini$0 to $49$84 to $9212 months with $295 down$1,195 to $1,295
alignerco logo mini$39.99$90 to $10911 to 12 months with $275 to $345 down$995 to $1,195
byte mini logo$29.95$83 to $9929 months with $349 to $449 down$1,895 to $2,295
snapcorrect logo mini$49$80.8424 months$1,749
smiledirectclub logo mini$0 to $29$8924 months with $250 down$1,950
smilelove logo mini$0 to $250$6212, 18 or 24 months with down payment$1,895
newsmile logo mini$0 to $49$84 to $9212 months with $295 down$1,195 to $1,295

*Costs are as of time of publishing. Terms and conditions may apply.

Teeth aligner FAQ

How do you use teeth aligners?
You wear teeth aligners in your mouth either all day (22 hours or more) or overnight (typically eight to 10 hours), depending on your treatment plan. You’ll have multiple sets of aligners with instructions on when to switch out old ones for new ones. Eating and drinking anything other than water generally requires you to remove your aligners and brush your teeth before reinserting them.
Are cheap teeth aligners safe and effective?
Most of the time, yes. It’s important to work with a reputable company for treatment. It’s also essential to follow your professionally directed treatment plan.
Why are invisible braces cheaper than traditional metal braces?
Traditional metal braces are usually more expensive than invisible braces because of the office visits and adjustments. Companies offering plastic aligners often use telehealth platforms for virtual visits instead of in-person visits. Keep in mind that while most aligner treatments are cheaper than traditional metal braces, Invisalign can be as expensive as or more expensive than metal braces.
If my treatment takes longer, will it cost more?
Sometimes, yes. If your treatment requires more retainers, the company may charge extra. If you are concerned about this possibility, be sure to ask a company about its policy for longer-than-expected treatments.
Can I pay for invisible braces with insurance, FSA or HSA?
Yes. Most companies accept all three options for payment, although they may have limitations on which insurance companies they work with.

Bottom line: Which is the cheapest clear aligner brand?

Aligners aren’t cheap, but companies offer financing options that help you cover the cost with affordable monthly payments. Out of all of the companies we featured, AlignerCo sells the cheapest clear aligners; at the time of publishing, its daytime aligners cost $995 if you make a one-time upfront payment, including the impression kit and a set of retainers. You can also choose a monthly payment plan with or without a credit check.

We don’t always recommend going with the cheapest option; instead, make sure you compare a few brands to figure out what one makes the most sense for your smile. If you still aren’t sure which aligner brand is right for you, learn about Candid next.

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Profile picture of Kathryn Parkman
by Kathryn Parkman ConsumerAffairs Research Team

As a member of the ConsumerAffairs Research Team, Kathryn Parkman believes everyone deserves easy access to accurate and comprehensive information on products and businesses before they make a purchase, which is why she spends hours researching companies and industries for ConsumerAffairs. She believes conscious consumption is everyone's responsibility and that all content deserves integrity.