Candid vs Byte

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Medically Reviewed
by Dr. Erica Anand
Alyssa Hill
Written by
Alyssa Hill
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Evidence Based
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10 sources cited
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Is Candid or Byte Better?

Candid and Byte offer at-home aligner treatment (also called direct-to-consumer aligners). Both provide affordable teeth straightening for thousands less than braces and Invisalign. 

Unlike braces, you don’t have to visit an orthodontist throughout treatment. The entire process can be completed from the comfort of home.

Candid is our #1 choice for at-home aligner treatment because:

  1. The aligners move all of your teeth, not just the front six.
  2. Candid has the only true telehealth system in the industry (CandidMonitoring). You’ll use the app to scan your teeth every two weeks and connect with your orthodontist. 
  3. They offer better patient care and remote monitoring for $1,895 (new low price as of October 2021). This is the same price as Byte’s ‘All-Day’ aligners. 
  4. Treatment typically takes longer than Byte. But this is for safety reasons. Moving teeth too fast can be risky and painful. 
  5. Candid only works with licensed orthodontists.
  6. Two ways to begin treatment. You can visit one of their 30+ studios, where you'll get panoramic x-rays and intraoral scans free of charge. Or, you can order an at-home impression kit.
  7. Candidates are carefully selected based on eligibility. Most minor to severe cases are accepted.
  8. Candid doesn’t have a night aligner option because they aren't proven to be safe or effective.
  9. If you aren't satisfied, you can request refinements within 30 days (Candid Guarantee).

Byte treatment is typically quicker than Candid (2-6 months vs. 6-11 months). For this reason, we only recommend Byte for mild cases of teeth misalignment. Moving teeth too fast can result in an improper bite, pain, and/or root resorption, which can lead to tooth loss. 

Candid is a great choice for most patients with mild to moderate teeth misalignment. However, they can also treat most severe cases of dental misalignment. Braces are the best and most effective option for patients with jaw misalignment. 

Candid (Our #1 Pick)Byte
Known ForBest Remote Monitoring & Patient CareQuickest Treatment Time
Cost$1,895$1,895-$2,295
Payment Plan$65/month$82-$99/month
Insurance CoverageYesYes 
Treatment CasesMild to SevereMild to Moderate
Social 6/12 or Full Arch*Full Arch (Moves All Teeth)Social 6/12 (Moves Front Teeth)
In-Person Scan OptionYes — Candid StudiosNo — Impressions Only
Mobile App ScansYes No 
Night Aligner OptionNo — For Safety ReasonsYes

* Social 6/12 addresses cosmetic concerns (i.e., straightening the front teeth). It does not fix the entire bite. Full arch addresses function first and cosmetics second. The aligners move all teeth, rather than just the front teeth. 

In this article, we’ll compare Byte and Candid in-depth to ensure you pick the best aligner for your needs.

Candid Aligners Overview

Candid is a popular and effective at-home aligner option. Treatment outcomes are similar to Invisalign but the aligners cost thousands less ($1,895 vs. up to $8,000). 

Candid aligners address function first and cosmetics second. They are designed to move all of your teeth, rather than just the front teeth. This is known as full arch orthodontic treatment.

Candid is also the only at-home aligner company that works exclusively with orthodontists (teeth straightening experts). 

You’ll receive high-quality care from a dental professional with years of experience in the industry. The same orthodontist who creates your treatment plan will track your progress via the CandidApp. 

How Candid Works
  1. Two ways to begin treatment: order an impression kit or visit a Candid Studio for a 3D scan.
  2. Studios are the best option — but they are not available in every state. A trained professional will take 3D scans of your teeth. With the impression kit, you have to take the physical molds yourself. This means there is a higher risk for error.
  3. A licensed orthodontist will review your impressions and create a treatment plan (if you are a candidate). Candid accepts most minor to severe cases of teeth misalignment. 
  4. After you approve the plan, you’ll receive all of the aligners in the mail within three weeks. Refunds are accepted if you aren’t a candidate. You can also back out of treatment if you haven’t paid for the aligners yet. 
  5. Wear the aligners for 20 to 22 hours a day. Your orthodontist will track your progress via virtual scans (remote monitoring). Candid has a mobile app that is available on iOS and Android. These scans are required every two weeks. 
  6. Treatment takes about 6 months, on average. The final set of aligners will act as your retainers. You’ll wear them every night to maintain your new smile. 

Byte Aligners Overview

Byte is known for its fast treatment time (between 2 and 6 months). Every customer receives a HyperByte® with their aligners. This is a dental movement acceleration device that claims to reduce treatment time by about 50 percent.

Byte offers two treatment options:

  1. Byte's All-Day Aligners are worn for 22 hours a day. They cost $1,895.
  2. Byte's At-Night Aligners are worn for 10 hours a night. They cost $2,295.

Byte aligners can treat most minor to moderate cases of teeth misalignment. We recommend them for minor cases. More complicated cases typically require longer treatment times. 

* Before you buy: Although 'quick treatment' is convenient, NewMouth is concerned about the safety of straightening teeth too fast. We also recommend regular aligners over night aligners. Learn why.

How Byte Works
  1. Order an impression kit. Treatment is completed remotely and there is no in-person option.
  2. The kit will arrive within a week. Take the impressions and send them back within 3 days.
  3. After reviewing your impressions, a dental professional will make a custom treatment plan using Byte's SmileScience system. The result is a digital 3D model that shows your smile before, during, and after treatment. 
  4. If you’re not a candidate for Byte, you’ll get a full refund for the impression kit. If you are a candidate, there is no obligation to purchase the aligners.
  5. If you approve the plan and buy the aligners, they should arrive within 3 weeks. You’ll wear them for 20+ hours a day and switch them out every 1 to 3 weeks.
  6. Send in progress photos every few weeks to ensure your teeth are tracking correctly. 
  7. Use the HyperByte® for a few minutes each day. This device claims to straighten teeth faster with HFV (high-frequency vibration). 
  8. After treatment, you’ll get a free retainer to keep your teeth straight. It should be worn every night. 

Candid vs. Byte Comparison

Here are the main differences between Byte and Candid: 

1. Treatment Costs 

Both Byte and Candid are affordable at-home aligner options.

Candid treatment costs $1,895. The impression kit is an additional $95. Candid aligners were originally $2,400 until October 2021. 

Candid also has an in-person consultation option. You can visit a Candid Studio for a free (and risk-free) scan. 

A Candid professional will take 8 diagnostic photos of your face, teeth, and mouth during the studio visit. They will also take x-rays and a 3D scan of your teeth. The result is a digital model of your mouth, teeth, and gums.

If you have a Candid Studio in your area, we recommend taking advantage of it.

Byte treatment costs $1,895 (all-day aligners). The night aligners cost $2,295 and treatment takes longer. The impression kit is an additional $95. Byte does not have an in-person consultation option. 

* Before you buy: We recommend regular aligners over night aligners. Learn why.

Retainers

With Candid, your first set of retainers are free. They recommend replacing them every six months ($99 per set).  

With Byte, you’ll get free replacement retainers biannually. They’ll also replace two stolen or lost retainers free of charge.

Payment Plans & Insurance

Candid and Byte both offer payment plans and accept insurance:

  • With Candid, pay as low as $65/month ($199 down) for 36 months, or $0 down and 0% APR. A credit check is required. Candid is also in-network with a few insurance providers, which can save you up to $1,000. If you have insurance, submit your information to Candid. They’ll send in the claim for you. 
  • With Byte, pay as low as $83/month ($349 down) for 29 months. The night aligners cost $99/month ($449 down). No credit check is required; everyone is approved for financing with BytePay. Byte is also in-network with a few insurance providers. 

2. Brand Track Records

At-home aligner treatment is still a fairly new practice. SmileDirectClub was the first home teeth straightening company that opened in 2014. 

Similar to Candid, SmileDirect offers in-person scans. But there are more SmileShop locations around the U.S. than Candid Studios. 

Candid is the second largest company. It has been around since 2017. 

In terms of patient care, Candid has surpassed both SmileDirectClub and Byte. They offer the most hands-on remote monitoring and provide comprehensive care. 

Candid is also the only at-home aligner brand that works exclusively with orthodontists (teeth straightening experts).

Byte is the youngest of all three. It opened its doors in 2018 but is quickly becoming more popular. 

Byte currently offers the best deals on refinements and has a Lifetime Guarantee. 

3. Treatment Quality & Safety

Based on our research, Candid and Byte are both safe and effective at-home aligner options. 

However, Candid is better in terms of overall treatment quality because they use the ‘full arch’ straightening method. In other words, Candid aligners move all of your teeth, rather than just the front teeth. 

This means you’ll receive a more comprehensive treatment plan that addresses function first and cosmetics second. The bite is treated as a whole to ensure long-term success. 

Byte aligners only move your top six and bottom six teeth. This form of treatment is referred to as 'social 6' or 'social 12.' It consists of flaring the front teeth out without moving the molars. The bite is not treated as a whole, which can negatively affect results and cause bite problems in the future. 

Candid also doesn’t have a ‘night aligner’ option. This is because there is no proof that night aligners are safe or effective.

Without a more consistent wear schedule, your teeth can be left in a limbo state of inflammation. It would take your teeth and gums longer to heal. This results in more discomfort and longer treatment times.

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4. Remote Monitoring

Of all at-home aligners, Candid has the best remote monitoring. 

Candid treatment is monitored remotely through the CandidApp. This app is available on iOS and Android. It allows you to connect to your virtual orthodontist office at any time. 

You’ll send in progress photos every 2 weeks using the CandidScan and Smile Stretcher. The scan box connects to your phone and takes detailed images of tooth movement. You can also set up push notifications to ensure you don’t miss a scan.

Once you submit the photos, you’ll hear back from your orthodontist within a few hours. They will let you know if it’s safe to move on to the next aligner set.

If treatment isn’t tracking correctly, your orthodontist will send screenshots of your teeth showing what went wrong and steps to get it back on track. 

Byte does not have a mobile app for remote monitoring. But you are asked to send in progress photos every few weeks. Also, your treatment case may not be overseen by a licensed orthodontist. Byte works with orthodontists, general dentists, and doctors.

5. Treatment Speed 

Candid treatment takes between 6 and 11 months. Byte treatment takes between 2 and 6 months. 

Candid doesn’t sacrifice clinical oversight over quick results. Because of this, treatment typically takes longer than Byte. 

Although this may seem like a drawback, longer treatment times are actually safer. Moving teeth too fast can result in an improper bite, more pain, and/or root resorption.

This is why we recommend Byte for minor cases of teeth misalignment. Candid is a better choice for complex cases. 

6. Aligner Material

Candid aligners are fabricated in Silicon Valley. They are made of Zendura FLX, a tri-layer material that provides a mixture of comfort and force. It is a textured, frosted plastic that looks similar to your tooth surfaces. 

Byte aligners are made of a shiny, smooth, clear plastic. This can make your teeth look abnormally shiny. Despite this, many reviews say the aligners are still very natural-looking. 

Both aligners are stain-resistant, durable, and BPA- and phthalate-free. A gentle whitening foam is also included in every purchase. 

We recommend only drinking water with the aligners in. Also, don’t drink hot liquids as they can warp the plastic. 

Other substances like coffee and red wine can discolor the aligners over time. But since you switch them out every 2 to 3 weeks, discoloration isn’t usually an issue. 

7. Customer Service

Candid and Byte both have good customer service. You can expect a reply within 24 hours, although they usually respond within a few minutes. 

Byte’s customer service is available daily from 8am to 6pm (Pacific time). Candid’s customer support is available daily from 9am to 7pm (Eastern time). This includes weekends. 

Candid has several platforms where you can reach customer service, including a chatbot and video chats. The CandidApp also has a 4.9/5 star rating on the App Store. This app allows you to connect to a customer service representative very easily. 

Byte is available via phone, email, and on social media channels. Candid support is also available on social media, including Instagram. 

8. Refinements, Guarantees & Refunds 

If you aren’t a candidate for treatment, Candid and Byte both offer refunds on impression kits. But you can't get a refund once you accept the treatment plan and pay for the aligners. 

Candid also offers risk-free scans at Candid Studios. You are not obligated to follow through with treatment during this consultation. And if you do pay for treatment at the end of the visit, you can still get a full refund until you accept the plan. 

If you are unhappy with your results after treatment, both companies offer refinements (additional aligners). 

Candid offers free refinements within 30 days (Candid Guarantee). This means you can request more aligners if your smile isn’t perfect, even after your initial treatment ends. 

Byte offers a 5-year Smile Protection Plan and a Lifetime Guarantee. If your smile moves out of alignment, they’ll help get it back at no additional cost. 

9. Getting Started With Treatment 

It is very easy to begin treatment with Candid or Byte. Both brands offer candidacy quizzes online that you can take before ordering an impression kit. The kits cost under $100. 

The main difference is that Candid offers in-person scans at Candid Studios. Scheduling an appointment is easy and 100% risk-free. The studios are currently available in 10 states around the country. 

Lastly, Candid’s ‘onboarding process’ is more comprehensive than Byte’s. When you receive the impression kit, you’ll get access to a portal with step-by-step instructions. The portal also includes video tutorials for how to take the diagnostic photos and physical impressions. 

Byte also provides instructions — but they are not as detailed. They also don't force pictures prior to treatment, which may affect results. 

With both brands, you’ll receive a digital treatment plan within 3 weeks of taking the impressions. From there, you can decide to approve or deny treatment.

The Final Verdict: Which Aligner is Right for You?

Byte and Candid are both good options for at-home aligner treatment. But Candid is our #1 choice overall. Here’s why: 

  1. Treatment costs – Candid wins (treatment costs $1,895 vs. up to $2,295 for Byte).
  2. Track records — Candid wins (they’ve been around since 2017 and have the best patient care).
  3. Treatment quality — Candid wins (the aligners move all of your teeth, not just the front ones). 
  4. Remote monitoring — Candid wins (they offer remote monitoring via a mobile app, have an in-person consultation option, and work exclusively with orthodontists) 
  5. Treatment speed — Depends on needs (Byte treatment times are typically faster than Candid). Because of this, we only recommend Byte for minor cases of teeth misalignment. Candid is best for most mild to severe cases. 
  6. Aligner material — Too close to call (based on reviews, both aligners are clear, discreet, and relatively comfortable). The main difference is that Candid aligners are ‘frosted’ to blend in with your natural tooth structure. 
  7. Customer service — Candid wins (based on reviews, both Byte and Candid have responsive customer service). But Candid has more avenues of communication, including a chatbot and video chats via the CandidApp. 
  8. Refinements, guarantees & refunds — Byte wins (they offer a ‘Byte for Life’ guarantee. If your teeth shift after treatment, Byte will send you new aligners to fix your smile). Candid also offers free refinements after treatment (but only for 30 days).
  9. Getting started with treatment – Candid wins (two ways to begin treatment: in-person studio or at-home impression kit). 

Resources

(1) FAQs About Invisible Aligners, byte. 

(2) Hyperbyte: The Technology Behind Faster Invisible aligner results, byte.

(3) Insurance Coverage for Our Invisible Aligners, byte.

(4) Ke, Y., Zhu, Y., & Zhu, M. (2019, January 23). A comparison of treatment effectiveness between clear aligner and fixed appliance therapies

(5) Weir, T. “Clear Aligners in Orthodontic Treatment.” Wiley Online Library, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 14 Mar. 2017

(6) Wexler, Anna, et al. “Direct-to-Consumer Orthodontics: Surveying the User Experience.” The Journal of the American Dental Association

(7) Candid. “Candid Clear Aligners.” Candid.

(8) Candid. “Candid Starter Kit.” Candid.

(9) Candid. “Our Most Frequently Asked Questions.” Candid.

(10) Candid. “What's the Difference between Candid and Invisalign?” Medium, Candid, 11 Feb. 2020.

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