This Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 4100 came close to making it into the main review stream, but it just slightly fell into the off-topic section since it wasn’t exactly “smart” in the connected kind of way. However, it was still worth mentioning since it does seem to be quite the hit for its recent price range.
We have come across a number of Sonicare models, but of them all, this one happens to be (what we consider) the perfect model for the average person. Much better than the normal “entry-level” Essence model (which is even more affordable, but just doesn’t quite live up to the performance of this one). Especially, when the 4100 is on sale. Recently, it has been falling into the $35-$40 range, which is proven to be quite successful in allowing it to break into the entry-level market and moving the Essence out of the picture.
The 4100 is far more compact and user-friendly for travel than the Essence, uses the smaller heads (the normal size that is compatible with so many other models), and doesn’t seem to have the same issues with mold and residue build-up that the Essence is plagued with (the Essence, you have to take it apart and clean it almost every other day it seems).
Cleaning this model is so much easier. It might be due to the design of the head and the gap that allows excess water to drain easily without building up inside. Also, the base doesn’t cup the button of the brush like the Essence did, which is one less area for water to collect and cause troubles.
It vibrates when you place it on the charging base, letting you know the charging has commenced (and that it is working). The footprint of the base is almost the same as the handle, so it is prone to be knocked over if you aren’t careful. However, having a small base like that keeps things neat looking and it doesn’t stand out like a sore thumb.
It cuts off for a quick second every 30 seconds and then goes right back into working. This is its way of telling you to move onto the next section of your teeth. A bit unneeded for most consumers, except for children, but then they have much better brushes out there for kids when it comes to teaching them this. It’s more for reminding everyone else to spend a little more time brushing. You can’t turn this off, so it may bother some who have roughened levels of pride. Else you eventually get used to it and it doesn’t really bother you and may actually promote you to brush longer.
After two minutes of brushing it does automatically turn off, letting you know you have brushed for the recommended time. If you feel like that isn’t enough, you’ll have to just turn it back on (this shouldn’t be a likely scenario though for most). There is no turning this feature of either. If you buy into the more expensive Bluetooth versions, you typically have an option to control some of these features. However, this one isn’t connected (as mentioned earlier), so what you see (in settings/features) is what you get.
There is both a white and black handle version of the product that you can choose from. The head that comes with the black model is white, although you can find both the official heads and generic options out there that are black if you want to match things up for whatever reason. However, thanks to the button featuring a white accent around it, the colors between the handle and head work out just fine. We do recommend some of the generic options though as they will keep you going for a long time at a reasonable price. Just make sure to read the reviews deeply to make sure they are a good source and not a cheaply designed generic option that doesn’t keep a tight fit to the brush.
Overall (thus far), this seems to be a wonderful brush. From this point, it all depends on longevity. If this brush can express the same longevity as some of the other models we have run across, it will maintain this great score and maintain itself as the perfect entry-level–and possibly only model–you’ll ever need.
Are you a manufacturer or distributor that would like us to test something out for review? Contact us and we can let you know where to send the product and we will try it out.
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