FOREO ISSA 3 Toothbrush Review
You probably may not heard of FOREO unless you frequently visit Sephora or a fan of skincare. I got to know FOREO when Li Xiang is looking to replace her facial cleansing massager, and she showed me the famous LUNA 3.
FOREO is a Swedish beauty-tech brand famous for its iconic facial cleansing massager. I didn’t know they have toothbrushes which is under their ISSA collection.
ISSA 2 was launched in 2018. ISSA 3 is the third iteration of their adult electric toothbrush and retails for S$246 with a 2-year limited warranty.
The toothbrush comes in a hard plastic casing.
This kit includes the ISSA 3 body, ISSA 3 brush head, a traveling pouch, a USB charging cable, and a user guide. The USB charging cable is from USB-A to a barrel power connector.
You will find the Getting Started guide as you unfold the paper wrapping around the box.
The toothbrush comes in four colors, Fuchsia, Mint, Pink, and Black. I got the Black, and Li Xiang got the Mint. The body and toothbrush head are both made from medical-grade silicone.
There are three buttons on the ISSA 3, + (plus), power, and – (minus). Plus increases the intensity, and minus reduces. There are a total of 16 levels of intensity. ISSA 3 can produce 11,000 sonic pulsations per minute at the highest intensity.
ISSA 3 is not wirelessly charged. You’ll need to plug in the charging cable. To charge, turn to the back of the toothbrush and flip up the charging port cover.
There is an LED indicator at the bottom of the toothbrush. It blinks white when charging. When the buttons are pressed (+, on, -), the indicator flashes once as a visual cue.
When the battery is low, the LED indicator will turn red.
The brush head is detachable.
ISSA 3 comes with the hybrid wave brush head as part of the kit. It is called a hybrid because the brush head has both the brush bristles and the silicone bristles. Front for brushing your teeth and back for cleaning your tongue.
You can clean your tongue using the back of the brush head.
The entire brushing process takes three minutes, two minutes on teeth, one minute on the tongue. Similar to my Philips Sonicare’s experience, you are supposed to divide your mouth into four brushing quadrants, brushing each quadrant for 30 seconds. After every 30 seconds, ISSA will vibrate once to cue you to move on.
Once two minutes have passed, ISSA will vibrate twice. You will use the remaining time to clean your tongue with the back of the brush head. This portion of the process cannot be disabled, and I don’t have this habit.
A full charge of 2 hours is supposed to last you about six months, assuming you brush twice daily. The brush head will last you about six months as well.
Coming from a person who has been using electric toothbrushes for 17 years (since 2004), ISSA 3 will feel very different if you are trying for the first time. There are a few things I need to adjust to, which I will explain in detail.
First thing first, you will need to get used to silicone-based bristles. Compared with bristles-based ones from Oral-B and Philips, these create slightly more friction than usual. It is not an issue, and I got used to it after my second use.
The body of the ISSA 3 is also made of silicone. I feel this gives a better grip than most plastic body electric toothbrushes.
At its highest intensity, ISSA 3 pulsates at 11,000 pulses per minute while a Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 5100 Electric Toothbrush pulsates at 62,000 brush movements per minute. Not sure this is an apple-to-apple comparison, but ISSA 3 is too gentle for me.
I can’t feel the intensity difference when I play around. There is also no visual cue on the toothbrush, and I have to press the plus (+) button 16 times to make sure I am at its high-intensity setting.
ISSA 3 brush head has better ergonomics than the regular electrical toothbrush. It is slightly curved, like the arch of our mouth, and the bristles extend much longer on the brush head. Technically, you should get more contact points when brushing your teeth.
The curvature can be a disadvantage when I brush my inner teeth. I have to turn my toothbrush 90°, and only use a portion of the brush head to do the cleaning. Perhaps, I haven’t got the hang of it.
Overall, the build, the quality, and the ergonomics of the ISSA 3 are excellent. The only thing I would wish for is a stronger intensity.
Li Xiang Thoughts
Li Xiang is particular (and strict) with her oral routine and equipment to begin with. Now, she is on the Invisalign program, and she can easily brush up to three to four times each day before putting the aligners back on.
She loves ISSA 3 after her first try. She is new to electric toothbrushes and is quite resistant to using an electric toothbrush to this date.
She loves the weight distribution of ISSA 3. It is lightweight (73g) and has better weight distribution between the brush head and the body, whereas the Philips Sonicare is almost twice as heavy (130g), where the main bulk of the weight is at the body.
Li Xiang shared that she has receding gum issues, and brushing three to four times a day will do her more harm. Hence, the intensity levels are good enough. She uses it for gum massaging and lips exfoliating.
When she first sees the brush head, her first response is that this is long and clunky. After using it, she appreciates the curved brush head. Li Xiang doesn’t seem to have any problem brushing the inner quadrants of her teeth either. Guess this is really up to how individuals use it.
The hybrid wave brush head has been effective for her. She likes that there is some familiarity with the bristles in place. The only improvement she wishes for is to have longer, thinner, and tapered bristles for this brush head. Being more particular, she wants to ensure that cleaning reaches all the in-betweens.
Both Li Xiang and I are on the opposite spectrum. I prefer my electric toothbrush to be more intense, whereas she doesn’t mind this to be gentler due to her frequent use.
In this part, FOREO ISSA 3 really captivates most dentists’ recommendation to brush our teeth gentler.
We both love ISSA 3 for its better weight distribution and more ergonomic brush head.
The ISSA 3 is gentle, and hence it is suitable for people who need to pay attention to the force exerted on their teeth and gums.
Where To Buy
If you are interested in getting the FOREO ISSA 3 in Singapore, it is available in selected Challenger physical stores and online stores. You can visit Foreo Brand Page on Challenger.com for more information.