The 8 Best Water Flossers of 2022—According to Testing

The Aquasonic Aqua Flosser is a cordless and affordable option that clears plaque with ease.

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best water flosser
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Water flossers are small powered devices that rely on pressure to direct a stream of water around your gum line and between your teeth, blasting away plaque and other build-ups that can cause inflammation, gum disease, and cavities. Flossing once a day is a good way to remove plaque from your gums and in between the nooks and crannies of your teeth. If you have gingivitis, wear braces or aligners, or simply have trouble with the fine motor manipulation of weaving dental floss between your teeth, a water flosser can take your flossing to the next level, removing more bacteria-causing plaque than string floss alone.

"Water flossers are [a great investment] for any dental patient," says Michele Bishop, DDS, founder, and owner of Ingram Hills Dental and the co-host of the YouTube Channel Tipsy Tooth Talk. "We still recommend flossing as the gold standard, but in the event, patients can not or will not [floss with string], a water flosser is a highly effective tool to aid in their oral health."

When testing water flossers in our Lab, our testers found that features like reservoir size, pressure settings, nozzle attachments, and how much space it will (or won't) take up on your bathroom sink are all important factors. We tested 14 different water flossers for effectiveness, ease of use, settings, and overall value. It quickly became clear that water flossers are not all created equal. The best ones were easy to use, comfortable to hold and have a big enough water tank to last through one full session.

Here are the best water flossers, according to our lab test.

Our Recommendations

Best Overall: Aquasonic Aqua Flosser

best water flossers
Amazon

Also available at Best Buy

Why We Like It: The cordless design is efficient and comfortable to use—at a fraction of the price you'll find on a brand name like Waterpik.

It's Worth Noting: This isn't the fanciest water flosser available; so if you want something with more advanced settings, you should keep reading.

This Aquasonic Aqua Flosser is our best overall because it impressed our tester with its easy-to-operate on-off switch and how simple it was to toggle between settings mid-use. That's because ergonomics—how comfortable the water flosser is to hold and operate—are so important, and that's just one area where this Aquasonic model really excels. Our tester noted that it is really well designed with a nice shape to the handle.

When it comes to separating good water flossers from great water flossers, pressure settings and reservoir size are important factors. We rated this flosser a 4.5 for settings because it only has three settings (fewer than some of the more expensive options on our list), but they are effective and get the job done. The pulse mode, in particular, was a tester favorite, with one noting that it did an excellent job getting gunk out from in between her teeth.

In order to get a thorough clean, you need a flosser with a large enough tank that won't require refilling or cut your session short before you can reach every nook and cranny of your mouth. Our tester was incredibly impressed with the tank size on the Aquasonic chiefly because it is a cordless design—typically cordless models sacrifice on tank size in order to be compact enough to handle. Plus, our tester found the tank easy to fill.

Finding a cordless water flosser that's high powered and has a tank long enough to last through an entire cleaning session is a tall order. And at this price, we don't think you can do better.

  • Dimensions: 3 x 4 x 10 inches
  • Reservoir Size: 150 mL
  • Pressure Settings: 3
  • Attachment Nozzles: 4
  • Extra Features: Includes travel pouch

Read more: This Colgate Smart Toothbrush Changed the Way I Take Care of My Teeth

Best Budget: H2ofloss Water Flosser Portable

best water flossers
Amazon

Why We Like It: Our budget pick has an impressive number of settings and different tips for such an inexpensive model

It's Worth Noting: The high pressure modes might be too intense for some people.

We chose the H2ofloss Water Flosser Portable as our best budget pick because our tester was surprised this flosser doesn't cost more, considering how versatile and functional it is. Where some more affordable flossers offer only the bare necessities, this one features five pressure settings, from low to super high, and includes six tips: two jet tips, an orthodontic tip, a tongue cleaner, a periodontal tip, and a toothbrush tip.

Our tester noted that the H2ofloss was intuitive and easy to figure out, even without a clear set of step-by-step instructions; it has a clean and practical design, earning a rating of 5 for ease of use.

The flosser was also effective at cleaning teeth and stores a good amount of water, especially for a portable unit. Our tester's mouth felt clean after use, but they did struggle to find the right intensity—the higher settings were a bit too strong and splashed excess water everywhere.

All in all, this is a budget-friendly pick that would be great for beginners. It doesn't include many extraneous pieces or accessories, but the variety you get in terms of pressure settings and nozzle choice elevates this affordable option beyond other less-expensive competitors.

  • Dimensions: 2.3 x 3 x 8.6 inches
  • Reservoir Size: 300 mL
  • Pressure Settings: 5
  • Attachment Nozzles: 6
  • Extra Features: none

Best Waterpik: Waterpik Aquarius

best water flossers
Amazon

Why We Like It: The Aquarius is a solid countertop flosser with a large reservoir so you won't feel rushed.

It's Worth Noting: The cord connecting the flosser to the reservoir is noticeably short.

In testing, we found the Waterpik Aquarius to be a solid flosser: not too complicated or too simplistic, with a long-lasting water tank that allowed us to get all the gunk out of our teeth without feeling rushed. It scored a 5 for effectiveness because our teeth felt spotlessly clean after using it, even when our tester opted for the lower, more gentler settings.

One of the toughest things about using a water flosser if you have braces is that they can be hard to manipulate, especially for kids who might have trouble managing a larger-size flosser. But our tester noted that the Aquarius has a smaller handle that would be perfect for kids.

As far as settings, the Aquarius scored a 5 there, too. It features 10 pressure settings, which are adjustable on the flosser base, a timer that alerts you after both 30 and 60 seconds of use, and seven nozzle tips for different purposes (or family members).

The only complaint our tester had was about the short cord connecting the flosser to the base; it made using the handle a little more difficult, and they wished it was longer. If you want a countertop water flosser with a long-lasting reservoir and don't mind sticking close to the sink while you floss, the Aquarius is a standout Waterpik.

  • Dimensions: 10.8 x 5.25 x 6 inches
  • Reservoir Size: 22 oz
  • Pressure Settings: 10
  • Attachment Nozzles: 7
  • Extra Features: built-in timer

Read more: The Oral-B Genius X Toothbrush Is The 'Number One Recommended Brush," According to Dentists

Best Cordless: Waterpik Cordless Advanced

best water flossers
Amazon

Also available at Walgreens

Why We Like It: It has a straightforward and minimalist design that's perfect for beginners looking to introduce a water flosser into their oral care routine.

It's Worth Noting: You won't find any special or standout features here; this is a basic flosser that simply gets the job done.

The Waterpik Cordless Advanced gets our pick for best cordless because both of our testers noted how perfect it would be for beginners, utilizing its lightweight, minimalist design in its favor. If you've never used a water flosser before and you aren't sure if it's right for you, a basic cordless option is the best way to experiment with a flosser without the commitment of a more complicated unit.

In terms of ease of use, this Waterpik earned a 5, with our testers commenting that the reservoir was easy to fill and the water lasted much longer than the 45 seconds indicated on the package. They also noted that it was easy to set up the product and actually use it.

However, with only three pressure settings, the Waterpik Cordless Advanced doesn't offer a highly customized experience (and it costs more than some models with 10 settings, like the Turewell). It did a decent job cleaning our teeth, with one tester feeling it got their teeth cleaned thoroughly in about a minute while our other tester noticed some residue and thought there was a little too much water to manage in their mouth.

Overall, the Waterpik Cordless Advanced is lightweight and ergonomic, making it a good choice for anyone unfamiliar with how to use a water flosser. While it might be too simplistic for some—and one of our testers felt it wouldn't be worth the price unless it was on sale—we recommend the Waterpik Cordless Advanced for first-time users and anyone concerned that string floss alone isn't providing enough benefit to their oral care routine.

  • Dimensions: 11.65 x 2.7 x 3.8 inches
  • Reservoir Size: 7 oz
  • Pressure Settings: 3
  • Attachment Nozzles: 4
  • Extra Features: travel pouch

Read More: The 7 Best Whitening Products for Sensitive Teeth and Gums

Best Portable: MySmile Cordless Water Flosser

best water flossers
Amazon

Also available at Amazon and Walmart

Why We Like It: You might sacrifice reservoir size for portability with other models, but not with the MySmile—it has the largest reservoir of any water flosser in our test.

It's Worth Noting: You may need to play around a little with the settings until you find one that works best for you.

Our tester found the MySmile to be a uniquely user-friendly experience, thanks to the combination of its digital design and travel-friendly features. Throw in a free travel pouch, and you get a water flosser that's perfect for stashing in a bag or suitcase and taking with you wherever you're going.

Although the MySmile is battery-powered and compact, it still manages to include a 350 milliliter tank, which is the largest of all the cordless flossers we tested. That means you get more use out of the flosser before needing to refill, but for roughly the same size and cost as other flossers featured here.

In testing, we appreciated the digital features of the MySmile, which made operation much easier: our tester could see the water temperature, pressure settings, and battery life at a glance, elevating the appearance and the actual usage of the flosser beyond some others we tried. We also liked the variety of nozzle attachments, especially the one with the bristle brush; our tester said using it felt like brushing and flossing at the same time, giving the MySmile a 5 for effectiveness.

One area where the MySmile came up short was ease of use; rating a 4, our tester found changing the pressure settings to be a little confusing and wasn't sure whether to use the "soft" setting or the "child" setting for the lowest pressure. But this didn't affect how well the MySmile worked—it gave us that "total clean" feeling and the digital design truly heightened our experience in testing.

  • Dimensions: not listed
  • Reservoir Size: 350 ml
  • Pressure Settings: 5
  • Attachment Nozzles: 8
  • Extra Features: none

Read more: This Dentist-Recommended Sonicare Toothbrush 'Blasts Plaque and Coffee Stains' Away - and It's 35% Off for Amazon Prime Day

Best Electric Toothbrush-Water Flosser Combo: Waterpik Sonic Fusion 2.0

best water flossers
Amazon

Also available at Bed Bath & Beyond

Why We Like It: You don't need to keep two separate devices on your sink—you can brush and water floss from the same base with this dual-purpose Waterpik unit.

It's Worth Noting: Because of the combination brush-flosser, you won't get any nozzle variety with this model.

As an electric toothbrush and flosser in one, the Sonic Fusion 2.0 allows you to brush, floss, or do both at the same time—and our tester found it super easy to toggle back and forth between settings, making it a clear choice for best electric toothbrush-water flosser combo.

The unit features a large reservoir but is still compact, a rarity in the world of countertop flossing units. In fact, our tester called it "sleek" and noted how it seemed designed to look good on a bathroom sink, giving it an overall value rating of 4.

The Fusion doesn't just look good, either: it also earned a 4 in both effectiveness and ease of use. Whether our tester was using the pik flosser or the toothbrush (or both), they thought the Sonic Fusion left their mouth feeling instantly clean, like they had just had their teeth scrubbed by a professional.

Our tester also found the interface simple to navigate, with a dial to control the pressure setting to specific levels and more convenient handheld-based controls to adjust function settings when switching from brushing to flossing. If you don't have time to mess around with an entirely separate oral care device, the Sonic Fusion performs both of its functions well and saves time.

  • Dimensions: 10.9 x 5.25 x 6 inches
  • Reservoir Size: 16 oz
  • Pressure Settings: 10
  • Attachment Nozzles: 2
  • Extra Features: built-in timer, travel case, recharge indicator

Read More: The 6 Best Electric Toothbrushes of 2022, Tested by Health

Best Oscillating Nozzle: Spotlight Oral Care Water Flosser

best water flossers
Spotlight

Also available at Target

Why We Like It: The oscillating feature simplifies the flossing process, making the Spotlight a good choice for anyone resistant to the idea of water flossing.

It's Worth Noting: Unless you need a lot of convincing to floss, the cost of the Spotlight is high compared to other products with similar features.

You might not think finding a water flosser with an oscillating head is that big of a deal, but our tester remarked multiple times just how effective (and easy!) it was to use our pick for the best oscillating nozzle thanks to this small but important feature. Utilizing more movement than other flossers, the Spotlight Oral Care Water Flosser is able to direct more water around and in between your teeth and gums—something our tester believed provided a more thorough clean with far less effort.

On other attributes, however, the Spotlight underperformed a little: our tester found that aside from the oscillating nozzle, there isn't anything special about this flosser that would justify its higher cost. The power button is slow to respond, but it does change color to signify the mode you're using; meanwhile, the reservoir is also a bit small.

Still, the total simplicity of blasting out gunky bits of food thanks to the oscillating head means the Spotlight earns its place on our list. Plus, our tester commented that the nozzle is on the smaller side, which makes it a good choice for anyone with orthodontics (especially when you combine that with the fact that the oscillation might help a reluctant water flosser remove more plaque in a shorter period of time).

  • Dimensions: not listed
  • Reservoir Size: 190 mL
  • Pressure Settings: 3
  • Attachment Nozzles: 4
  • Extra Features: none

Best with Additional Nozzles: Turewell Water Flosser

best water flossers
Amazon

Also available at Walmart

Why We Like It: Several different nozzle attachments and adjustable pressure settings for people with sensitive gums make this water flosser stand out from the rest.

It's Worth Noting: Attaching the nozzles can be tricky, so if you're planning to use a variety, you'll need some skill and patience.

Yes, the Turewell water flosser earned our pick for best with additional nozzles because it includes three jet nozzles and five issue-specific nozzles, but more importantly, our tester found that the flosser head itself was small enough to access hard-to-reach areas—which means you can utilize all those fancy nozzles heads in every part of your mouth, maximizing your oral health routine.

In fact, our tester thought the Turewell performed pretty closely to their own personal Waterpik unit at home, which says a lot about the Turewell's overall value. All of the various nozzles do require some fiddling as you change them out, per our tester, which lowered the unit's ease of use rating down to 4. Meanwhile, the unit's pressure settings are a standout, earning a score of 5; our tester liked that it only featured an on/off button and a pressure setting dial, which made it easy and intuitive to operate.

Our tester also said "the pressure dial was able to zero in on precise pressure settings most other wet flossers are unable to." This makes the Turewell suitable for people with sensitive teeth and gums, such as our tester, who might otherwise find the standard pressure settings of a flosser too intense for their liking. If you're looking for a more affordable alternative to a pricey water flosser and a thorough clean that's gentle enough for sensitive teeth and gums, the Turewell has the right combination of settings and nozzles to meet your needs.

  • Dimensions: 8.7 x 6.2 x 5.1 inches
  • Reservoir Size: 600 ml
  • Pressure Settings: 10
  • Attachment Nozzles: 8
  • Extra Features: none

Our Testing Process

We tested 14 water flossers in our Lab to determine the best ones to add to your oral care routine. Our testers set up each device filled the tanks with water according to the manufacturer's instructions and evaluated the different tips and pressure settings, familiarizing ourselves with how it maneuvers around our teeth. For consistency, we set a timer for one minute and used each device to clean near the gumline and in between our teeth.

Our testers took note of how well each water flosser removed debris and plaque from their teeth, whether it left anything behind, how it handled in hard-to-reach places, how easy the different settings were to navigate, and how quickly the device ran through water in the tank. We rated each device for effectiveness, ease of use, settings, and overall value.

Water flossers that left our mouths with that "just left the dentist" feeling of cleanliness rated high on our list, along with products that featured larger reservoir tanks, multiple pressure settings, and simple designs free of confusing assembly steps or instructions. Products that didn't make our list of recommendations missed the mark on one or more attributes: they were too awkward or clumsy to use, didn't offer enough variable pressure, or simply weren't worth their higher price point when compared to other similar flossers.

We're also testing these water flossers at home so we can rate their performance over weeks and months of daily use. We'll continue to update our recommendations based on insights from our long-term testing.

What to Know About Water Flossers

There's no single best water flosser since everyone's flossing and oral care needs are different, but there are some common features that most people should take into consideration when shopping for a water flosser that will be worth their while.

Reservoir Size

The reservoir tank is where the water from the nozzle's pressurized stream comes from. When you fill up the tank, the water then flows either into a tube connected to the nozzle attachment or directly into the nozzle attachment itself (on cordless models).

"A large, easy-to-fill, removable water reservoir makes it much easier and therefore much more likely that my patients will actually use the water flosser to maintain their oral health," says Ghias Jabbour, DDS, owner of Blanco Crossing Dental.

That said, there are some pros and cons to keep in mind before settling on a large reservoir:

  • Pro: You can use the water flosser for longer each session.
  • Pro: You won't have to refill it daily.
  • Con: Larger tanks are usually not cordless.
  • Con: It will take up more space on your counter or sink.

Pressure Settings

The best pressure setting is the one that you can use the most comfortably and get the most benefit from. It's helpful to have a variety of options, so you can adjust the water pressure as needed; maybe you only want low-medium pressure 90 percent of the time, but the ability to turn up the pressure to blast away a stuck piece of food in the back of your mouth.

"Water flossers have different speeds and strengths, and should always be used on the lowest setting to start off with and then gradually increase over time," advises Dr. Bishop.

Particularly if you have sensitive teeth or gums, you'll want to make sure there is a "low" pressure setting and that it's actually gentle enough for you. Using a too-high pressure setting can leave you with a sore mouth and additional sensitivity symptoms.

Nozzle Types

Many water flossers include a full set of nozzles that can be helpful for different users, including jet tips, orthodontic tips, tongue cleaners, and more. Dr. Bishop says the classic jet tip is the most used and recommended, because it delivers a steady stream of water directly between the teeth to disrupt plaque, but that the new specialized tips are good when used appropriately.

"The orthodontic tip has a brush that flexes around the brackets, the periodontal tip can deliver prescribed medications from the dentist right along the gum line, and the plaque tip has a brush that is very useful around crowns and implants, which can be harder to clean because of their small components," explains Dr. Bishop.

"Multiple specialized nozzles are an important consideration, especially for patients with braces," says Dr. Jabbour. "Different nozzles also allow multiple family members to share the same water flosser, which keeps costs down."

Alerts and Timers

Some water flossers, like the Waterpik, include auto timers to let you know how long you've been flossing. Most of these products are set to alert you at the one- or two-minute mark, which is a good guideline for how long you should spend flossing in a given session.

Ergonomics and Overall Footprint

Again, there's no right answer here, but Dr. Jabbour says it's worth it to spend a little more on a water flosser that's easy to use—that way you'll end up actually using it instead of just letting it take up space on your sink.

Speaking of taking up space on your sink, you should pay attention to how much real estate you can devote to a water flosser before committing to one. If you don't have a lot of room, a cordless or more travel-friendly option might be a better choice than a corded one with a large reservoir. The same goes for if you're planning to take your water flosser with you when you're away from home; a smaller option will definitely be easier to pack.

Finally, make sure you like the way the water flosser feels in your hand. Many of our testers noticed when a product was easy to hold or had an ergonomic, well-balanced handle, and since it can be awkward fitting the nozzle into the hard-to-reach places of your mouth, you need a flosser that maneuvers smoothly as you twist and turn it around.

Read More: The 9 Best Mouthwashes for a Healthier Mouth, According to Dentist Guidelines

More Water Flossers to Consider

We also tested these water flossers but ultimately decided not to include them in our list of recommendations. They fell short in our test when it came to technology, features, and functionality:

  • Waterpik Nano Plus: Our tester thought this flosser was small and compact, with a sizable reservoir, but for the costs we prefer some other options from Waterpik.
  • Waterpik Cordless Express: This is a powerful flosser that's nearly ready to use out of the box. It has two settings, which would work fine for someone who needs a lot of intensity—our testers noted that the lowest setting is still pretty strong.
  • Waterpik ION Professional: The Ion is sleek, compact, and easy-to-use, but we weren't as impressed with its quality. The nozzle attachment fell off mid-use and our tester struggled to reassemble it correctly.
  • Waterpik Cordless Pearl: We found the Pearl is better for travel than everyday use. Our tester noted that it was messy to use along the front teeth and the attachment needed re-inserting a few times.

Your Questions, Answered

How do water flossers work?

Water flossers use a small motor to send a pressurized stream of water through a nozzle at your teeth and gums. In doing so, they can remove plaque and bacteria sticking to the hard-to-reach places in your mouth, like along your gum line and between your teeth, that regular dental floss may not be able to.

They are especially if you have orthodontics such as braces (and might not be able to floss in between archwires and around brackets), if you have crowns or bridges, if you have gingivitis and need to take extra good care of their gums, and people who can't manipulate dental floss effectively because of conditions such as arthritis.

Are water flossers worth the money?

It depends on your oral care needs. If you have generally healthy teeth and gums and don't wear oral appliances or struggle to use traditional string floss, a water flosser might be more of a luxury addition to your oral care routine. (Not to say it couldn't be worth it, just that you might not get as much use out of it.) But if preventing and removing more than the average amount of plaque is critical to your health, we think water flossers are a solid investment.

Can Waterpiks and water flossers damage your teeth?

No, Waterpiks and water flossers cannot damage the teeth or the gums, per Dr. Bishop, since water alone can't damage the structure of your tooth. They can cause mild irritation at first, but that's often normal.

"Some individuals may notice some bleeding similar to flossing when first using a water flosser, especially if the tissue is inflamed or diseased," says Dr. Bishop. "As the biofilm and plaque causing the inflammation decreases, the bleeding should as well."

Who We Are

Sarah Bradley has been a freelance writer since 2017, tackling health commerce articles, product reviews, and shopping guides on everything from dry skin moisturizers and wart removers to menstrual cups and toothbrushes for braces. She has personally tested electric toothbrushes and water flossers, so knows what makes a good product stand out from a great one (and really, really wants to tell you about it).

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