Brushing teeth is often viewed as a chore with a standard domestic tool called the toothbrush. Over 50% of Americans fail to brush their teeth at least twice a day and brush for less than 2 minutes. People lack a personal connection with these tools and, as a result, their oral hygiene suffers.
Oral hygiene such as bad breath, a nice smile, and avoidance of dentists are the main reasons why people brush their teeth.
There are only three main factors that ensure a clean/healthy mouth - How we brush our teeth, spending two minutes brushing, and brushing twice a day - first thing in the morning and the last thing at night.
There are no electric toothbrushes that perfectly compliment the bathroom aesthetic and many electric toothbrushes have redundant functions. The truth is, toothbrushes all achieve the same result, it is more a psychological and marketing game that doesn't take into account real human emotion and interaction. Finally, specifically with the UK market, 2 pin shaver sockets are not commonplace in bathrooms.
This storyboard highlights the pain points relating to brushing teeth. it shows how; toothbrushes are often left on the side of the sink, charging the battery is a burden, and interchangeable heads are rarely environmentally friendly.
Exploring the internals of an existing electric toothbrush allowed a baseline to create a framework for the architecture of the product.
Heavily resting upon the CMF style of bathrooms and beautiful smart devices. Sophisticated, geometric blended forms, clinical colours and high gloss material finishes. This aims to achieve a beautiful end product that feels like it belongs in the bathroom.
I used CAD evaluation tools such as curvature and zebra stripes to ensure G2 and G3 continuity was achieved on the A-surfaces of the product.
Designed to do all the thinking for the user, the app will track; time, technique and frequency of brushing - the only 3 important factors according to experts. It gives personalised suggestions for users based on their habits.
A flexible PCB is utilised to make the most of the surface area inside the organically formed body.
An 3003, polished aluminium handle ensures a long lasting, strong brushing experience. The high gloss, polypropylene body paired with the aluminium handle reflects the bathroom style beautifully.
To reduce waste, only the head is removable (not the neck). Furthermore, the bamboo composite head allows the replaceable heads and bamboo bristles to biodegrade.
Rather than a single-device, proprietary charger, Way’s battery pack utilises type-C charging. With the new type-C legislation being introduced, this means 1 cable for all your devices.
Not just a toothbrush. With its elegant, minimalist, holder using a subtle suction cup, Way fits into the typical bathroom style. It is a considered purchase for people who care about home aesthetics.
"Design a smart toothbrush" was the brief I was given when working on this project for Layer. There are a couple of definitions of the word ‘smart’. The first is “having or showing intelligence” and the other is “Clean, tidy and stylish”. Alongside this skeleton brief, I was also given other specifications:
Powered electric toothbrush
Acknowledgements: Photography (Cate Castleton Photography), Review (Hubert, B and Dale-Brown, J at Layer)
Date: September 2022